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The Full Gospel Church

      Vol. II Number 10                    March 22,1998


A Thief in the Night

Have you ever been robbed? Has your house or business ever been broken in to? When does the robber come? Is it during a nice day when you are awake? Is it during the night when all are asleep? Of course the thief comes when all are asleep in the middle of the night. Today much of Christianity is asleep! They are settled on their lees and don't realize what time it is. They think that the rapture of the church is far off. They think that the Lord will tarry for another day.

How wrong they are to think that the Lord is going to delay his coming. How wrong they are to think that they have all of the time in the world to prepare for the coming of the Lord. How many will be caught on the outside of a locked door, seeking t0o enter after the door has closed?

2 Peter 3
10 But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up.

1 Thessalonians 5
1 But of the times and the seasons, brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you.
2 For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night.
3 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.
4 But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief.
5 Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness.
6 Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober.
7 For they that sleep sleep in the night; and they that be drunken are drunken in the night.
8 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.
9 For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ,
10 Who died for us, that, whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with him.

How many will be caught unawares? How many will be left behind, for they weren't ready for the trumpet call? How many will be wondering how was it possible for them to miss the rapture? Many are asleep and are saying peace and safety. There isn't a major war going on today, and the markets are doing well. The Christian community doesn't have anything top worry about. There isn't any ``real'' persecution of the Church going on, so the majority of the Christian community has been lulled to sleep.

Throughout history during times of prosperity and peace the Church fell asleep. During these times many Christians lost their spirituality. Then something happens to change the times and the church experiences a revival. We are living in a time where the church isn't praying. We are living in a time when the church isn't seeking the Lord. We are living in a time where the people are saying peace and safety. How dangerous a time that we are living in. Though we may have all of the conveniences of this modern age, is it for the best that the church doesn't have to seek and depend upon the Lord Jesus Christ? The era that we are living in conforms to the times that the Lord described as the conditions of the final days.

The great revivals happened during times of impending doom. They came about during times of war, economic calamity, and such. The great revivals came during times of great persecution of the Church. Today, people don't have to seek the Lord for their very existence. During the Viet Nam War, there were many ``hippies'' who repented of their sins and accepted Jesus as their Saviour. These ``hippies'' became known as the ``Jesus Freaks.'' They upset the religious establishment of the late 60's for they didn't look like a conservative Christian. But many of these ``Jesus freaks'' seeked the Lord with all of their heart and needed to depend upon the Lord Jesus. During that time there was a lot of tumult in the world and animosity. Many a young man was afraid of dying in the jungles of Viet Nam. So many gave their heart to the Lord and many received the baptism of the Holy Spirit.

The days that we are living in are perilous times. There is peace and safety. People are marrying and giving in marriage. And during times this is when the church slumbers. During times like this people are not seeking the Lord with all of their heart. What a terrible position to be in to find yourself standing outside of a locked door, knocking with all of your might, and not being able to enter. Many are in the condition where they are not prepared for the rapture. They have fallen into a deep sleep. They have lost their first love. they are slumbering not realizing what time it is.

Now is the time for the ones that have fallen asleep to wake up. Many don't even realize that they are asleep though. Their prayer life has slacked and they don't seek the Lord with all of their heart any longer. They think that everything is in order and that they don't to be as fervent as they once were. They feel that they are ``grown up'' in the Lord. They don't realize the perilous ground that they are walking on. They don't see that the time of the coming of the Lord is is at hand. They don't see the need to seek the Lord with their whole heart. The sleep has overwhelmed them, and they are content with their life. But Jesus is calling those who are asleep to come alive in Christ. Now is the time to revive and rejuvenate yourself and remember your first love. Now is the time to come to the door and enter the door.

Matthew 25
1 Then shall the kingdom of heaven be likened unto ten virgins, which took their lamps, and went forth to meet the bridegroom.
2 And five of them were wise, and five were foolish.
3 They that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil with them:
4 But the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps.
5 While the bridegroom tarried, they all slumbered and slept.
6 And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him.
7 Then all those virgins arose, and trimmed their lamps.
8 And the foolish said unto the wise, Give us of your oil; for our lamps are gone out.
9 But the wise answered, saying, Not so; lest there be not enough for us and you: but go ye rather to them that sell, and buy for yourselves.
10 And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came; and they that were ready went in with him to the marriage: and the door was shut.
11 Afterward came also the other virgins, saying, Lord, Lord, open to us.
12 But he answered and said, Verily I say unto you, I know you not.
13 Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh.

Luke 13
23 Then said one unto him, Lord, are there few that be saved? And he said unto them,
24 Strive to enter in at the strait gate: for many, I say unto you, will seek to enter in, and shall not be able.
25 When once the master of the house is risen up, and hath shut to the door, and ye begin to stand without, and to knock at the door, saying, Lord, Lord, open unto us; and he shall answer and say unto you, I know you not whence ye are:
26 Then shall ye begin to say, We have eaten and drunk in thy presence, and thou hast taught in our streets.
27 But he shall say, I tell you, I know you not whence ye are; depart from me, all ye workers of iniquity.
28 There shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth, when ye shall see Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, and all the prophets, in the kingdom of God, and you yourselves thrust out.
29 And they shall come from the east, and from the west, and from the north, and from the south, and shall sit down in the kingdom of God.
30 And, behold, there are last which shall be first, and there are first which shall be last.

How many will be standing on the outside seeking to enter? How many will miss the rapture? How many well be looking up from the pits of hell saying we have eaten with you? How many will be lost because they have lost their fervor? How many will be lost for they have fallen asleep?

The Full Gospel Church

	3014 E Street
	Philadelphia, PA  19134
	Church Office Phone: (215) 634-3637
	Published by: Rev. LeRoy D. Cressy (215) 535-4037 
Sunday School . . . . . . . . . . . . . .10:30 AM
Sunday Morning Worship . . . . . . . . . . 12 NOON
Sunday Evening . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6:30 PM
Wednesday Evening . . . . . . . . . . . . 7:30 PM
Last modified: Sun Mar 22 10:30:29 EST