Watch and Be ReadyBro. David Chancellor
3/18/2007 6:00 PM
Let your loins be girded about, and your lights burning; And ye yourselves like unto men that wait for their lord, when he will return from the wedding; that when he cometh and knocketh, they may open unto him immediately. Blessed are those servants, whom the lord when he cometh shall find watching: verily I say unto you, that he shall gird himself, and make them to sit down to meat, and will come forth and serve them. And if he shall come in the second watch, or come in the third watch, and find them so, blessed are those servants. And this know, that if the goodman of the house had known what hour the thief would come, he would have watched, and not have suffered his house to be broken through. Be ye therefore ready also: for the Son of man cometh at an hour when ye think not.
Watch and be ready. Be on your guard. Be ready for him to come. This scripture would have us both looking forward and being on our guard. This probably is the most advanced warning we’re going to get. He’s coming. Get ready and stay read and you’ll be ready when he comes. If you wait until the last minute, you’ll miss out. Late just isn’t quite good enough. Not being ready at Christ’s appearing won’t be good enough. Be ready to go and be an example to those around you while you wait. Shine while you watch. Maybe you can get one more soul in while you wait. The time to reach souls is fast passing. It isn’t time to coast. There’s work for us to do. Spread the word so that people will be ready. Have an up and busy watch. There are many who won’t make heaven if something doesn’t change in them.
And now, behold, I know that ye all, among whom I have gone preaching the kingdom of God, shall see my face no more. Wherefore I take you to record this day, that I am pure from the blood of all men. For I have not shunned to declare unto you all the counsel of God. Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood. For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock. Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them. Therefore watch, and remember, that by the space of three years I ceased not to warn every one night and day with tears. And now, brethren, I commend you to God, and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up, and to give you an inheritance among all them which are sanctified.
Paul’s life wasn’t over, but he had been forewarned of trouble at Jerusalem. Because he didn’t know the outcome, he gave them his farewell. His warning to them is good to us all. Some will try to do things contrary to God’s purpose. The wolves are coming – be on your guard so that you’re not drawn off. We want people to watch because we don’t want them to fail. Keep committed to God. Keep your eyes on him above everything else. God is able to build you up and give you a part in heaven. The warning is there to remind people what God has provided. It keeps us on our guard. There are things that could take us away, but we want to keep close to God. If you stay close to God, the wicked one can’t touch you. When there is a question, shine a little more light on it. Check it out before you grab onto something. See if it matches God’s word.
Continue in prayer, and watch in the same with thanksgiving; Withal praying also for us, that God would open unto us a door of utterance, to speak the mystery of Christ, for which I am also in bonds: That I may make it manifest, as I ought to speak.
Prayer and watching are often tied together in the Bible. Prayer causes us to look for things and can help us to be on our guard. If you would keep the fire burning within, you need prayer. If you would keep it burning, you have to keep adding fuel. Your part of the keeping grace of God is to be faithful in prayer. When the rough patches come where everything is shaking, you need prayer to get through it. Prayer can help you to find the right path to take.
Then saith he unto them, My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death: tarry ye here, and watch with me. And he went a little further, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt. And he cometh unto the disciples, and findeth them asleep, and saith unto Peter, What, could ye not watch with me one hour? Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.
Jesus went to the garden to watch and guard against what lay ahead. He went so he could be ready for carrying out God’s plan. He prayed until it was settled that he would do God’s will. Jesus came back and found the disciples asleep. They were willing in their own minds to go to the death with Jesus that night, but they weren’t watching. The battle found them unprepared. Jesus gives us an example of what he meant when he said, "Watch." Jesus had not failed up to this point, and he didn’t want to fail in the last point. We need to watch to the very end. Keep watching and waiting. Stay ready. Be faithful in prayer in all stages of your life. We don’t want to step out of line at the moment of success. Jesus watched in the garden at the hour of his success. He wanted to be able to stand. The child of God wants to succeed. We need our hours in the garden to succeed. Have your "garden" of prayer. Have a place you can go to pray. When things would overwhelm, get to the garden. Stay there until the battle is won. Be ready. When trials and battles come, go to the garden and get the strength and help you need to overcome.
1 Thessalonians 5:1-9
But of the times and the seasons, brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you. For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night. For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape. But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief. Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness. Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober. For they that sleep sleep in the night; and they that be drunken are drunken in the night. But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for an helmet, the hope of salvation. For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ,
That day will come suddenly on those who aren’t watching. Everyone will taste death except those who are living when he comes back. Your end is coming whether the earth ends soon or not. If you’re ready, you’re not in darkness. We don’t have to be afraid of facing God if we’re ready. It doesn’t have to sneak up on us. We can be ready. If we’re looking for Jesus to come, we should be glad to have him come. We don’t want to get careless in our watching. We want to be ready. God wants people to find salvation. When we find it, we need to keep it until he returns for us. Keep looking for his coming. A hope of heaven helps you to guard against what would take it away. Stay ready in your soul. Keep a hope of heaven. Be ready when he comes.