This Week's Gospel Sermons
June 12 - 17, 2011 Gospel Meeting At Jackson Drive.
Speaker: Bob Hutto
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July 24, 2011
It Passes Away
Mankind seems to want thingsto last forever. We even get aggravated if something with a “lifetime guarantee” breaks down. Remember Ponce de Leon and others who searched for the “Fountain of Youth” so as to live forever young? There are religions, especially those related to sabbatarianism, that hold to the premise that earth itself will last forever and never be destroyed, only restored. I have an automobile that I have had for over thirty-five years already—and it was already eleven years old when I got it. It sure seems like it could be around “forever” in one shape or another.
“Do not love the world nor the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the boastful pride of life, is not from the Father, but is from the world.The world is passing away, and also its lusts; but the one who does the will of God lives forever.” (1John 2:15-17).
Following this admonition to love neither the world nor the things in the world, John says that both shall pass away. This original word for “world” is the word from which we get our current English word, “cosmos.” The cosmos and everything it contains will pass away; they are not worthy of following or putting one’s trust into after all. There are several other things which the Bible says will pass away; and since this striking promise is made, it is a good time to give some thought to these things that we are assured will pass away.
Not only will the world and the things in it pass, but all flesh will pass, too (1Peter 1:24). Each person’s flesh is important to him, but please don’t put very much hope there, for it will pass (Hebrews 9:27). Our lives, in this sense, soon pass: “Yet you do not know what your life will be like tomorrow. You are just a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away.” (James 4:14). Just think how deceived many are in this matter!
Not only will all flesh pass away, but all earthly things will pass away also. We have already noted that life will pass and since life is compared to plants, we can surely see that the flowers and grass of the earth will pass (1Peter 1:24). Man is likened to these in Job as well (Job 14:1,2). It is not just the simple grass that will pass away, but all the riches of earth will pass away (Matthew 6:19,20). The pleasures of earth will all pass away (Hebrews 11:25). These pass while they are in the process of taking place, and we often lament the fact that they pass. Still, more emphasis is placed on these than most things with many people. The wisdom of the world will pass (1Corinthians 1:19). Both the good wisdom and the evil wisdom will pass away. A lot of time we spend in learning of the wisdom of the world is quickly disappearing. The glory of the world soon passes away. So many are so concerned about obtaining glory. Don’t be deceived. It, like pleasures, passes as it arrives. The fashions of the world soon pass away (1Corinthians 7:31). Even the trials and troubles of life pass away (2Corinthians 4:17).
Finally, heaven and earth will pass away, too (Matthew 24:35). A description of this passing is found in 2Peter 3:10. Why put our emphasis on things here when all of this will pass away?
God’s word tells us of things which will pass, but also provides for us a contrast. He tells us there are things which will not pass away.
God’s word will not pass away: “Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will not pass away.” (Matthew 24:35). It will be here to judge us in the end: “He who rejects Me and does not receive My sayings, has one who judges him; the word I spoke is what will judge him at the last day.” (John 12:48).
The church (kingdom) of God will not pass away: “In the days of those kings the God of heaven will set up a kingdom which will never be destroyed, and that kingdom will not be left for another people; it will crush and put an end to all these kingdoms, but it will itself endure forever.” (Daniel 2:44) It will be delivered to God (1Corinthians 15:24).
The inheritance, which is promised to faithful Christians, will not pass: “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to obtain an inheritance which is imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, who are protected by the power of God through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.” (1Peter 1:3-5).
The crown of life will not pass away nor fade: “And when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the unfading crown of glory.” (1Peter 5:4).
Do you put your trust in things that will pass away or in those things are assured to be unwavering? Is your trust placed in a financial vehicle like a mutual fund? Perhaps you are like a man I know who buried his belongings in his yard. Do you put your trust in the “solid” ground? “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves do not break in or steal; for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” (Matthew 6:19-21).
Are you a Christian? If not, why not obey the gospel and make the start to these everlasting things? If you are a Christian, remember what passes away and what doesn’t. “Since all these things are to be destroyed in this way, what sort of people ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness, looking for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be destroyed by burning, and the elements will melt with intense heat! But according to His promise we are looking for new heavens and a new earth, in which righteousness dwells.” (2Peter 3:11-13).
— S. Scott Richardson Sr.