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Staff Corner

Greg Spires – Teaching Pastor
Like A Thief
It seems strange to compare Jesus with a robber.  But that is exactly what the Bible does.  2 Peter 3:10 says, “But the day of the Lord will come like a thief.”  What does this tell us about the Lord?
            Nobody knows when a thief will try to break in.  A thief will not call a homeowner and tell them, “While you are out of town this weekend, I am going to break into your house and steal your valuables.” If a thief let us know when he was coming, we would make arrangements to catch him to face justice.  Another way of saying this: If we knew the thief was coming, we would do things differently than we planned.  We would rearrange our plans based on the coming of the robber.
            Like a thief, Jesus’ return will be unannounced and unexpected.  He will return at the least likely time.  Think about it: if somehow, we knew when that day would be would we do things differently than we plan?  Would we rearrange our plans based on our knowing the day of His return?  Of course we would!  If we rearranged our plans to prevent a common house burglar, we would certainly rearrange our plans for the return of the King!
            We know how to prepare for a thief: Get security cameras, set the alarm, hire a guard, and notify law enforcement.  So, what do we need to do if we are willing to live by faith in expectation of the return of Jesus?  Thankfully, the Bible tells us exactly what it means to trust Jesus’ return is soon.
            2 Peter 3:14 says, “Therefore, beloved, since you are waiting for these, be diligent to be found by him without spot or blemish, and at peace.”
            Be diligent: We must live with the intention to be found living in the power of Jesus.  It doesn’t happen by accident.  Diligence: we must decide and act.  We must choose to live by Christ’s priorities and let go of our own priorities.  We must be willing to make decisions about how we structure our lives that put God’s eternal purposes above our own very temporary desires.
            Found without spot or blemish:  We must, by faith, recognize that Jesus saved us from sin; therefore, to keep returning to it is folly.  We are saved by grace from our sin.  We are not saved by grace so we can keep on sinning.  We will struggle with sin until we see Jesus.  But we must struggle!  We must keep this fact in the forefront of our minds: our sin is not okay!
            Be at peace: We must get along with one another!  Why don’t we get along? Because we other people get in the way of getting what we want.  James 4:1-2 says it plainly, “What causes quarrels and what causes fights among you? Is it not this, that your passions are at war within you? You desire and do not have, so you murder. You covet and cannot obtain, so you fight and quarrel.” To have peace, we have to learn to love others (and unity) more than our personal preferences.
            Diligence, holiness, and peace in Christ.  It is by pursuing these things in faith we find ourselves ready for Jesus, no matter when His return might be.
I look forward to being with you this Sunday as we celebrate the work of God in Jesus Christ together!  This Sunday, we will be seeking God through His Word in 2 Peter 3:1-18.
See you Sunday,


Dennis & Luiza Strellman: Greater Europe Mission (GEM), Hungry
The Strellmans have joined a new organization, Greater Europe Mission, as mission strategists for the Focus Cities project and to help with the ministry and staff in Hungary and Romania.
Pray for their leadership training near Vienna, September 13-14.
Pray as they pioneer a new ministry and develop a team and website to reach Budapest.
Pray for a young couple from the U.S., Kyle and Marissa, who live and work in Hungary, but also desire to serve in ministry. They are excited to invest in the lives of the Hungarian people.
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