Check out this intriguing true story about the necessity of being warned and being ready!
A May 1984 “National Geographic” article showed via color photos and drawings the swift and terrible destruction that wiped out the Roman cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum in A.D. 79. The explosion of Mount Vesuvius was so sudden the residents were killed while in their routine: men and women were at the market, the rich in their luxurious baths, slaves at toil. They died amid volcanic ash and superheated gasses. Even family pets suffered the same quick and final fate. It takes little imagination to picture the panic of that terrible day.
The tragedy? People did not have to die. Scientists confirm what ancient Roman writers recorded: weeks of rumblings and shakings preceded the actual explosion. Even an ominous plume of smoke was clearly visible from the mountain days before the eruption. If only they had paid attention to Vesuvius’ warning!
The Bible is very clear in giving us a warning: The Lord is “not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance. But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away with a great noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat” (2 Peter 3:9-10). For the Christian, it will be a glorious day; a day that we look forward to and that gives us hope. For the non-Christian, that day will be a nightmare! It means their time of mercy is over and judgment is coming. There will be one verdict: Suffering for all eternity in the lake of fire.
When will that day happen? Jesus declares in Matthew 24:36, “But about that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.” Man tries to predict the day, but only the Father knows. For example, Harold Camping was a Christian radio broadcaster and evangelist who became famous trying to predict Christ’s Second Coming. He first predicted the Judgment Day would occur on or about September 6, 1994. When that failed to occur, he revised the date to September 29 and then to October 2. In 2005, Camping again predicted it to happen on May 21, 2011, when the saved would be taken up to heaven in the rapture, and that “there would follow five months of fire, brimstone and plagues on Earth, with millions of people dying each day, culminating on October 21, 2011, with the final destruction of the world.” He finally acknowledged his efforts to predict a date were sinful and he stopped. We do not know the day of Christ's return so we must be ready every day!
Today is the day of Salvation (2 Corinthians 6:2). The Father is so patient, giving people time to repent and surrender to Him. But one day, He will say “Enough!” As the Apostle Paul declares in 1 Thessalonians 4:16-18, “For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. Therefore encourage one another with these words.” Maranatha! Come Lord Jesus (1 Corinthians 16:22).
This Sunday, November 27, we will conclude our fall teaching series, “We Believe!” with the marvelous truth of “The Blessed Hope!” Someday, maybe even soon, Jesus will return for those who are looking for Him! Please invite someone to join you at 10:35am either in the building or online for the Live broadcast on either Facebook (Honolulu AG) or our YouTube channel (Honolulu Assembly of God). We Livestream every Sunday to both locations.
It’s time to “Deck the Halls!” After the service this Sunday, we will decorate the building for Christmas and then enjoy a delicious lunch together. (The lunch is provided and free; you don’t need to bring anything that day.)
A Big Mahalo to everyone who made last Sunday’s Thanksgiving Lunch so wonderful! Eddie, Marie M, and Shirley prepared the turkeys; Shirley and Karen organized the meal, and Everyone made a wonderful difference.
Coming Up: Our 11th annual Christmas Lunch and Treasure Trade for ladies and girls will take place Saturday, December 3, at 11:30am. It looks like this year’s event will be the largest attendance ever! Please bring your donations of new or very gently used items to the church before the event; they are greatly needed!
Aloha ke Akua!