Where are You Looking?
If you are driving down a highway at 70 miles and hour and are trying to sight see along the way while driving, that might not be too good of an idea. It could be a very dangerous thing; it may even cause you to lose your own life or take someone else’s life. You need to keep your eyes straight ahead when you are driving or the consequences may be very serious.
Let me give you another illustration. If you are walking down main street, with all of its stop lights and cross walks, it would not be a good idea to walk down the street while looking straight up above your head at the same time. That might be the last day you may talk a walk on planet earth!
In what direction are you looking in a spiritual sense. Are you looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith (Heb.12:2)?
Let’s take a few minutes today to look at some of the “looks” or the “lookings” of the Word of God.
I. Look to the Cross
A. Pictured in the Brazen Serpent
Notice what God told Moses:
To verify this was a type pointing to Christ, Jesus quoted it in the New Testament in regard to Calvary.
15 That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life
B. Encouraged By the Writer of Hebrews
He is saying we are to look away from everything else and focus our attention upon the Lord Jesus.
If the believer focused his attention on troubles and heartaches he or she may get disheartened or depressed, but never when he looks at the Lord Jesus.
“Looking unto Jesus” ought to be a constant practice for us in our daily lives. Rather than being spasmodic or occasional like a nerve twitch, looking toward Jesus ought to be a way of life.
I still keep going to the cross now that I am saved, because that is where I get the spiritual help I need.
Look to the Cross
Why did Peter want them to look on Him and John?
B. They had an example to show
1 Thess 1:6-7
It is our responsibility to show others how to live by example, not by just our verbal instructions. In other words we do not say “do this” but “do as I do.”
Without a good example our words have no weight.
III. Look To Our Comrades
There was a day when if someone were doing the best they could do, and they needed some help in finances or in other things, people would be there to help them.
So many people today are looking out for themselves and just for themselves.
Quickly, the one man teached down and grabbed his tennis shoes and started putting them on. The other man looked at him and said, "What are you doing? Do you think you can outrun that grizzly bear?"
And the first man said, "No, and I don't need to. All I need to do is to outrun you!"
The Bible says, “Look to yourselves” means we are to take guard or take care of two matters.
How do we lost what we have wrought. It has reference to losing what we have worked for or those things we have accomplished.
Colossians 2:18---"Let no man beguile you of your reward in a voluntary humility and worshipping of angels, intruding into those things which he hath not seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind.
God saving us is not a “reward”—instead it is a free gift given to underserving sinners. We do nothing but repent and believe to have salvation as a gift.
Colossians 2:18 makes it clear that somethings we do can cause us to lose our reward. It is one thing to lose reward and a different matter to lose your salvation.
People who are filled with pride operate for themselves and thus if what we have not done for the Lord that means we stand to lose reward that could have been ours in Heaven.
What we need to do is live a consistent Christian life. We are not to be up and down like a yo-yo, but faithful to the Lord’s work inside and church and outside of the church.
It is that person that lives consistently for the Lord, day in and day out, that will receive a full reward when they stand before the Lord in the world to come. Let’s not live in a slid-shod manner for our Lord.
IV. Look to a Coming
Are you looking for Jesus to come?
I have people to ask me when I think Jesus will come back? My answer is when He is ready. That day and hour is unknown among angels. None of them know the exact time Jesus will come back to earth to take His bride out of this present world.
Both the Old and New Testaments are filled with promises of the Second Coming of Christ. There are 1,845 references to it in the Old Testament, and a total of seventeen Old Testament books give it prominence.
Of the 260 chapters in the entire New Testament, there are 318 references to the Second Coming, or one out of 30 verses.
Twenty-three of the 27 New Testament books refer to this great event. The four books that do not include three which are single-chapter letters written to individual persons on a particular subject. The fourth is Galatians which does imply Christ's coming again.
For every prophecy on the First Coming of Christ, there are 8 on Christ's Second Coming.
Would you be ready if Jesus came today, or would you be left behind to face the horrors of the tribulation period?
Jesus is coming in the near future so you had better be ready.
I am not looking for an alien spaceship invasion, brother and sister, I am looking for Jesus to return to take us to our heavenly home.
There are many signs of His coming we do not have time to go over this morning, but Jesus Christ is coming again. If Jesus doesn’t come tomorrow, I will be looking for Him the next day. It is a fact that He will fulfill his promise to return for His own.
VI. Look to a Contemplation
There are many Greek N.T. words that can be translated look. This particular word in Rev. 4:3 is the one (hor/ah’/o) that means “to deeply contemplate or to gaze upon.” It is not a glance, it is a gaze. It is the picture of a person who is awestruck and cannot take his eyes off something or someone.
Look at the picture in Rev.4:3. It is a heavenly scene after the door opens in Heaven. There is one sitting upon a throne. Of course, we know who that is. He is the only one worthy of ruling the heavens and the earth.
It will be a blessed thing to see the Lord Jesus. I cannot imagine what it will be like when we finally are able to see Him.
We cannot even imagine what it will be like when we see Jesus……It will be a day like no other day in our existence.
These earthly eyes will become heavenly ones and we will look upon the Son of God in all of his glory and brightness…. THE GOOD THING IS WE WILL BE IN HIS GLORIOUS, MANIFESTED PRESENCE FOREVER AND EVER.
WHAT A GLORIOUS, WONDROUS FUTURE GOD’S PEOPLE HAVE TO LOOK FORWARD TO:
The jewels chosen to describe God proclaim a marvelous message to the hearer. They were considered the most brilliant and the most valued, precious, and desired gems on earth. Thus God is seen and described as the most brilliant and valued, precious, and desired Being—a Being of indescribable glory and splendor.
⇒ The countenance of God shone like a jasper stone. The stone referred to was different from the jasper stone of today. The idea is that the stone was some sort of translucent crystal through which light was shining. It was shining so brightly that it was apparently like the concentrated light of a laser. This represents the penetrating perfection and purity of God.
⇒ The sardine stone was a fiery red stone and it represents the justice of God.
⇒ The rainbow that surrounded the throne looked like emerald green. This represents the mercy of God and the new covenant of grace given to man by God. (Cp. the promise of mercy made to Noah. Cp. Genesis 9:11-17.)
That will be a sight of all sights.
Do you look forward to seeing that throne and the One who sits upon it? Thank God, one day we will all because Jesus showed us grace and mercy. Hallelujah!
VII. Looking Toward a Compensation
We wonder if God is ever going to judge unrepentant sinners. At one point, the psalmist had a problem with that issue. He finally went into the house of the Lord, realized their end, and settled the matter in his own heart. Will God judge the ungodly? Yes he surely will.
Note a final fact about the warning: a person who has rejected the word of truth and enjoys the practices sinning, has nothing to look forward to but judgment and the fury of wrath.
⇒ By judgment is meant the terrible day when the sins of men will be judged. And remember, there is no sacrifice that covers the sins of this person; therefore, he must bear his sins himself and face God.
⇒ By fiery indignation is meant a fierceness of fire the burning of wrath and indignation ---- a devouring fire and everlasting burnings.
In closing as we consider God’s wrath, there are five truths we must remember:
God’s wrath is said to be in perfect accord with God’s justice.
God’s wrath, then, is in proportion to human sinfulness.
J.I. Packer summarizes: “God’s wrath in the Bible is never the capricious, self-indulgent, irritable, morally ignoble thing that human anger so often is. It is, instead, a right and necessary reaction to objective moral evil.”
2. God’s wrath is to be feared.
God’s wrath is to be feared because we are justly condemned sinners apart from Christ (Romans 5:1).
God’s wrath is to be feared because he is powerful
God’s wrath is to be feared because God promises eternal punishment apart from Christ (Matthew 25:46).
We find immensely fearful descriptions of the wrath of God in both the Old and the New Testament.
4. God’s wrath is his love in action against sin.
Admittedly, God’s love for his own glory is a most sobering reality for many and not good news for sinners. It is after all, “a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God” (Hebrews 10:31).
5. God’s wrath is satisfied in Christ.
Where are you looking today? The primary place to look is to the cross. It is there you will see light; it is there you will be blessed; it is there you will get help from Almighty God.
Sermon From Dr. Tom Walker