Sunday service, Erlo Stegen, 03 April 2016
28 And they drew nigh unto the village, whither they went: and he made as though he would have gone further.
29 But they constrained him, saying, Abide with us: for it is toward evening, and the day is far spent. And he went in to tarry with them.
This happened when Jesus joined with the disciples who were going to Emmaus. And when they drew near to their home Jesus made as if He would go further, but this was the word they spoke to Him, ‘Lord abide with us, for it is toward evening’. It was getting dark.
Let us look at this spiritually. It is getting dark in the world. It seems as if the sun is indeed going down. It seems as if we’re coming to the end of the world and the end of time.
We read that in the last days it will indeed go difficult, and that the powers of heaven will be shaken (Matt 24:29).
Heaven was made for the children of God, they who are the light of the world. Jesus said that if the light goes dark, then how dark will it then be (Matt 6:23)! We Christians are the light of the world. As He was in the world, so are we. Jesus is our Sun. It’s heartbreaking when His light doesn’t shine through us as it should. Even the moon should shine because of the light of the Sun. It’s reflecting the light of Jesus who said, “I am the light of the world” (John 8:12).
22 For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now.
In the Bible the preachers of the Gospel are spoken of as the stars (Dan 12:3). And the word says that the stars will fall in the last days (Matt 24:29).
Why is it so dark in the world? Because many stars have fallen, the preachers of the Gospel have fallen. Ministers and preachers are being caught in evil things.
In the Bible also, the oceans are symbolic of the nations in the world. Just look at the nations. It’s as if the leaders cannot rule, as if they’ve lost control.
In Exodus 33 God said to Moses that He would send an angel with them but He won’t go with them. He said that he would keep His promise to lead them into the promised land, but He won’t go with them. But Moses answered that if God doesn’t go with them he also won’t go further.
15 And he said unto him, If thy presence go not with me, carry us not up hence.
To Moses, God Himself was greater than the promises and blessings. God was more precious to Moses than conquering the enemies. He wasn’t sidetracked by anything, not by the world or even the marvelous promises.
Paul said our spiritual life is like running a race to win a prize, and he won’t be sidetracked by anything. He was running to win the prize.
A certain king had a beautiful daughter. Many young men wanted to get married to her and many spoke to the king whether they could get married to the princess. But then the king thought of something. He decided to have a competition and let the young men run, and the winner could get married to his daughter. On the track the king put a golden shoe close to the road. On the day of the race, there was a young man who outran all the others, and in the distance he saw something glittering in the sun. When he got closer he saw this beautiful golden shoe and went off the track to look at the shoe, and spent quite some time looking at it. Suddenly he realised he was in the race and grabbed the shoe and ran further, but he couldn’t catch up again. He presented the shoe to the king but the king wasn’t interested, but insisted that the one that won the race would get the hand of his daughter.
In America there was a ministers conference and they hired a big hall and the ministers booked into the hotel. After the conference one of the caterers asked what type of conference it was since their pornography channel was the busiest ever. That’s why it’s so dark in this world, because the stars have fallen.
It’s a cursed thing when those who are called Christians are divided. Many missionaries fail because they cannot get along with other missionaries, and that brings a curse on their work.
The solution to our problem is that Jesus abide with us. However, it’s not sufficient just to say, “Lord abide with us”. God said to Moses that if they wanted Him to go with them, they had to part from sin. And so too if you want God to abide with you, you must part from sin.
1John 2:6, “He that says that he abides in Him ought himself also so to walk, even as He walked”.
You might ask God to abide with you yet you continue in sin! That won’t work. You have to get rid of the golden calves in you life.
May we not just be hearers but doers of the Word (James 1:22).
Quartet 01: Let me see
Quartet 02: You have searched me