Didn't get to record the lesson this morning but I would like to share this outline with you all. I hope it blesses all who reads it. Use it to God's glory as you see fit.
“Sermon from a Shirt”
I saw a lady the other day in Panama City wearing a shirt with the following quote. “ I don’t want to go to Heaven, because none of my friends are there”. That quote was from a man by the name of Oscar Wilde. Wilde was a British playwright during the 1800s. He was a very immoral individual. He was a homosexual and lived a very promiscuous unrepentant life. When I saw this lady wearing this shirt, I saw a lady whose heart was hardened and didn’t care about that.
In our lesson today, I want to make some spiritual application to our lives to respond to this tragically sad comment/quote.
I.I want to go to Heaven because my father is there.
Heaven is the dwelling place of God. (Rev. 21:22-27)
I want to spend eternity with God. Notice 2 Corinthians 6:14-18
“14 Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?
15 And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel?
16 And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.
17 Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you.
18 And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.”
I want to be in sweet communion with my Lord, both now, and forever. There are several meanings to the word communion. One of those meanings according to Webster is “a close relationship”
If I am in communion with my God, He will dwell in us and will be our God and we shall be his people.
We are reminded to separate ourselves from the unfruitful works of darkness ( see also Ephesians 5:11)
The quality of a dwelling place is often determined by its inhabitants. God will be with us there therefore Heaven will be a place that is perfect. This world is not perfect.
I am reminded of that beautiful hymn we oft sing “ My God and I will go for aye together, we’ll walk and talk as good friends should and do. This Earth will pass and with it common trifles, my God and I will go unendingly”
We will also be face to face with Christ our savior, “face to face what will it be?’
We are promised that we will see his face. ( Revelation 22:1-5)
II. I want to go to Heaven because it will be home for me.
77 years ago, Judy Garland said famously as Dorothy Gale, “There is no place like home!”
For her, Kansas was home!
This world is not my home!
I look forward with joy to the day I can go home. Not to McMinnville, but to the home prepared by my father.
To live is Christ and to die is gain ( Phil 1:21,23)
Phil 3:20- Our Citizenship is in Heaven
III.I want to go to Heaven because my faithful friends and family will be there
When I saw this woman’s shirt, I thought, “you need new friends”
The fact that she said her friends wouldn’t be in Heaven says alot about their character and conduct
I Cor. 15:33
Psalm 116:15 “Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints”
I Thess 4:14 and I Cor 15:18 mention those who have fallen asleep in Jesus.
Revelation 14:13 “ Blessed are they who die in the Lord”
IV.I want to go to Heaven because of what will not be there
a.Rev. 21:4 And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.
Rev 21:8 But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.
Think about how many tears have been shed in this life due to sorrow. There will be never a tear in Heaven because there will be no cause for tears.
Think about how many funerals have been attended. There will never be a funeral in Heaven because there will be no death in Heaven. Death is the last enemy to be destroyed according to the Apostle Paul in I Corinthians 15:26.
Death is swallowed up in victory. In Heaven, the saints will never be stung again by death ( I Cor. 15:54-57)
V.I want to go to Heaven because of what will be there
My crown of righteousness will be there.
Paul speaks about it in 2 Timothy 4:8.
Jesus told the church at Smyrna in Revelation 2:10 to be faithful unto death and they would be given a crown of life.
What is the crown of righteousness?
a. Crown (stephanos) - "the wreath or garland which was given
as a prize to victors in public games" - Thayer, cf. 1Co 9:
b. "metaphorically the eternal blessedness which will be given
as a prize to the genuine servants of God and Christ: the
crown (wreath) which is the reward of the righteousness"
Thayer's Greek Lexicon
In Heaven, I will reap the benefits of living a faithful, Christian life.
I cannot stop thinking of the lady wearing that shirt with the sad quote on it.
Her heart is hardened, and honestly, when a person gets to that level, it is hard to do anything with that.
We know God gives people over to their vile affections ( Romans 1:26,28)
However, as long as man has life in his body, he has the opportunity to respond to Heaven’s invitation. I hope someone can reach people like this lady with the truth.
Extend invitation, Plea to respond.