Reading: Luke 12:35-40, Isaiah 11:6-10
Additional reading: Isaiah 65:25, Eph 2:14–18, Rev 21:4, 24–27
Blanks: ready, knocks, expect
(1) Do you know that Jesus said that he would return back to the earth?
Yes, Jesus talked about his coming back.
Jesus promised that he would be back.
He would be back because he needed to finish his work.
So, Jesus said something like this:
“I will return.
But you cannot guess the date of my return.
I can come on Monday.
I cam come on Tuesday.
I can come on Wednesday.
I can come whenever.
It can be in the morning.
It can be in the afternoon.
It can be at night.
So no one can guess the time.
But you can be prepared!
You can prepare your heart for me.
You can do that by listening to my words.
“Then God will help you.
God will help you live with me.
Then you can do some good works, having a good and right mind.
Then when I come, I will serve you and honor you.”
It is very obvious.
We can prepare to meet Jesus by trying to do what Jesus asks us to do.
Living according to his will is the best way to be ready to meet Jesus.
So, we come here to learn about his will for our lives.
We try to understand Jesus.
Because when that happens, Jesus can easily guide us.
Jesus can make our life very fruitful.
(1) There is another way that we can be ready to meet Jesus.
It is to love God more than anything.
It is to love God more than our nation.
It is to love God more than our parent or family.
It is to love God more than our job.
It is to love God more than our school.
It is to love God more than our way of life.
When we are like this, God can really get involved in our life.
God can do some good works for us.
God can give us a good health.
God can give us a good education and a good intellectual power.
God can take care of us.
God can take care of our life as well as our future life in heaven.
I think God knows better.
God can take good care of us better than we can do.
So, we can depend on God who helps us live a good life.
God loves us.
That is why God gave us Jesus, God’s only child.
Then when Jesus came, Jesus loved us.
He risked his life for us.
He offered his life to save us and provide what God wanted for us.
Then he called us to join him, offering our life to God.
God loves us more than anything.
But then God asks us to love God, as well.
Because then we will receive all God’s blessings and be able to live for the truth.
We will be able to do that because we will live being connected with God.
(1) The bible says that Jesus will come back.
When he comes, what kinds of things will he do?
What kind of world, will he make?
Will Jesus help us experience greater happiness?
Will Jesus introduce New Heaven and New Earth?
Will Jesus fulfill the ultimate hope of people?
Will Jesus give us rest?
Will Jesus help us worship God?
Will Jesus make us new people?
Will Jesus give us new jobs to do?
Will Jesus judge people?
Will Jesus make peace?
Will Jesus make people understand God and each other?
(1) In order to answer some of these questions, the bible says something like this:
“On that day, the wolf will live with the lamb.
The leopard will lie down with the goat.
The calf and the lion will eat together.
Then a little child will take care of them.
A little child will guide them.
(1) The cow will feed with the bear.
Their young will lie down together.
And the lion will eat straw like the ox.
The infant child will play near the cobra’s den.
The young child will stick his hand down the hole of a serpent.
But neither animal nor human will hurt or kill.
Then everyone will know God.
Everyone will know the value of the story of Jesus.
Then the nations will gather together to worship Jesus.
The place where Jesus dwells will be glorious.”
The bible wishes for peace.
The bible promises that people will live in peace.
Because they understand God.
Then they will be good to each other, as much as God is good to them.
They will live in peace because they sense God’s peace inside of them.
Then everyone will be changed for peace.
(1) But in order to create this kind of peace, Jesus had to suffer.
So, Jesus died on the cross.
It was painful events.
But in this way, Jesus took our sins away.
Then, Jesus could start to make the world purer and purer.
This process is still going on.
Then one day, there will be peace.
The bible says that even Jesus’ students suffered and died like him.
They worked to fulfill the story of Jesus.
They lived their life based on their knowledge of Jesus.
They helped people to understand the story of Jesus so that new people could also plan their life remembering Jesus.
Then these new people will have a good mind and a good life, because they are thinking about Jesus.
(1) Peace is coming.
One day the world will experience peace.
In the meantime, we are also called to make the world peaceful.
In this way, we can prepare for Jesus’ coming and his peace.
In this way, we can be ready to meet Jesus.
Waiting for his world of peace, we are asked to live loving our neighbors, welcoming the poor, and sharing our faith, until we meet him face to face.
Jesus, you open for us a new world of peace.
Help all of us to enter into that world of peace, by the power of Holy Spirit.
In Jesus name, amen.
The cave you fear to enter may hold the true freedom you seek.