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  • Writer's picturePastor Mike

December 31 2023

Sunday, December 31

We Must Be Prepared!


Psalm 118:1-4

1 Oh, give thanks to the LORD, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever.

2 Let Israel now say, "His mercy endures forever."

3 Let the house of Aaron now say, "His mercy endures forever."

4 Let those who fear the LORD now say, "His mercy endures forever."


We are about to close out an old year, and in a few hours, begin a new one and Psalm 118 is a great psalm that will help us do it with thanksgiving and praise. Whenever we come to the end of a year, I’m always greatly amazed and shocked that Jesus did not come back that year! I thought sure the Lord would have come back in 2023! It appears that everything in prophecy has been fulfilled or is currently happening to prepare for His coming! Who knows, maybe in the next few hours He will come, but no matter, when He comes the big question will be still be, “Are you ready?”


I believe that there is no better way to close out this old year than to know that your sins are forgiven, that your name is written in the Lamb’s Book of Life and if Jesus did come back that you know that you are ready! Or, if suddenly you died and you draw your last breath and your heart stops beating, you still know you are ready to meet the Lord! The Bible says in Proverbs 27:1, “Boast not yourselves of tomorrow for you know not what a day may bring forth.”


In Hebrews 9:27, it says, “It is appointed unto a man once to die, and after this the judgement.”  My friend, “You don’t know what shall be on tomorrow, for what is your life, it is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away!” (James 4:14). We since we don’t know when or where we will draw our last breath, we need to be prepared! You don’t want to gamble with your soul! Jesus said, “What shall it profit a man if he gains the whole world and then loses his own soul? Or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?” (Mark 8:36-37). Please, don’t gamble with your soul! Make sure today that Jesus Christ is your Lord and Savior!


We often say, “It is not about a religion, it is about a relationship. A relationship with Jesus Christ!” As you feel the full weight and burden of your sins on your soul, you simply need to be willing to repent of your sins and you need to believe that Jesus Christ is the only way of salvation. That He is the only One who can redeem your soul. That Jesus paid the full price for your sin with His own death, and He alone can buy you out of the slave market of sin and set you free (John 8:36-38; 14:6). My friend, today by faith you can receive the wonderful gift of God, the Lord Jesus Christ and experience His eternal life. Romans 6:23 tells us that, “The wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life though Jesus Christ our Lord!”


We should never forget John 3:16-17, “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever (That means even me), believes in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved!” If right now the Holy Spirit is convicting you of your sin, you can call upon His name and He promises you that you will be saved! “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved” (Romans 10:13).


Please finish out this year knowing that Jesus Christ is your personal Lord and Savior! My friend, you can know, that you know that your sins are forgiven and that you are saved! In 1 John 5:13 we read, “These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life, and that you may continue to believe in the name of the Son of God.” It is not because of something that you do, but because of something that has already been done through Jesus Christ, His death on the cross and His resurrection!


Now it is possible you have already made this great decision in the past and experienced His salvation but in 2023 as you look back and feel deeply disappointed over things you have done, things that you are very ashamed of, sins that you have committed against a holy God, and you are very discouraged over your walk with God today! Well, in closing I want to remind you that 1 John 1:9 is still in the Bible, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” 


This is why I love Psalm 118! As we look at it over the next few days it will greatly encourage you to remember “that God is good, and His mercy endures forever” and you can trust the LORD to forgive and help you every day to face the challenges of life whatever they are! Are you prepared?


Happy New Year and God bless!

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