The prophet, Joel declared, “Blow the trumpet in Zion; sound the alarm on my holy hill. Let all who live in the land tremble, for the day of the LORD is coming. It is close at hand.” (Joel 2:1, NIV)
May I suggest that in the midst of our latest teaching series, we need to be sending out a clear warning?
What should we be warning people about? Here are 5 Tunes We Should Be Blowing…
1) Jesus is coming… soon! The signs are everywhere. The news outlets are covering them… shouldn’t we? Persecution, earthquakes, floods, volcanoes erupting in an alarming duet with violence around our nation and world. It is our job to connect the dots between these events and the eminent end. Sound a little to apocalyptic and alarmist? That’s because it is. Love your target audience enough to say it anyway.
2) It’s time to get right… tomorrow is not promised. These aren’t the “scare tactics” of yesteryear. Or, are they? And, why not? We are all going to die, if Jesus doesn’t return first. And, Hell is a pretty scary place. The time is now to come to Jesus and allow His infinite love and grace to change our eternal destination. He paid the way on the cross of Calvary and rose again to conquer sin and death for us. Preach John 3:16 (&17) like it’s never been preached before!
3) Jesus is the way… the ONLY way. Sound intolerant and lacking in an informed love for humanity? Consider this… what kind of human would we be if we truly believed that “The bridge is out!” but deliberately failed to warn those cruising in comfort down that same road?
One classic argument still works well. If we are wrong about Jesus then we have lost little, lived a comparatively good life and that’s really about all it takes for anyone to make it to Heaven (if there even is one). However, If we are right, then those who differs with us on this point have lost everything, forever. The only loving thing we can do is declare the Truth we believe. “Jesus answered, ‘I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (John 14:6, NIV)
4) Hell is as real as Heaven… and Jesus doesn’t want anyone to go there. So, you need to go there, pastor! Preach it, teach it, Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook, Tweet and blog about it. Weave the reality of reward and punishment into your repertoire of otherwise Biblically sound and grace-filled, relevant topics.
5) We are accountable… and will answer. Some of you reading this will end up being too concerned with a “radical” image and label to match. You will worry about losing your following as people think you have lost your mind (or at least your “cool”). Don’t be one of them. You will never have been more relevant than when calling everyone’s attention to the soon coming of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Consider the ancient warning of Ezekiel…
“The word of the Lord came to me: “Son of man, speak to your people and say to them: ‘When I bring the sword against a land, and the people of the land choose one of their men and make him their watchman, and he sees the sword coming against the land and blows the trumpet to warn the people, then if anyone hears the trumpet but does not heed the warning and the sword comes and takes their life, their blood will be on their own head. Since they heard the sound of the trumpet but did not heed the warning, their blood will be on their own head. If they had heeded the warning, they would have saved themselves. But if the watchman sees the sword coming and does not blow the trumpet to warn the people and the sword comes and takes someone’s life, that person’s life will be taken because of their sin, but I will hold the watchman accountable for their blood.’” (Ezekiel 33:1-6, NIV)
YOU are one of these “Watchmen,” pastor. It’s time to pick up that trumpet and blow!
PS – You gotta love some Louis Armstrong. Preach Jesus like “Satchmo the Great” played that trumpet!