Last Chance

IT WAS A COOL CLEAR MORNING IN THE YEAR 1446 BC. BARAK SAT ON A BOULDER WITH HIS BACK TO THE WIND AND THE SUN. THE WIND WAS BLOWING HARD AND THE SAND STREAMED AROUND HIM LIKE WATER. HAVE YOU EVER STOOD IN A FAST MOVING STREAM AND WATCHED THE WAY THE WATER SQUEEZES AROUND YOU? THAT IS WHAT THIS WAS LIKE. BARAK AND HIS STONE CREATED A DISTURBANCE IN THE PATH OF THE SAND AS IT HURRIED ON ITS WAY, AND THAT DISTURBANCE SPUN OFF LITTLE SAND DEVILS, LITTLE WHIRLWINDS DOWNWIND OF HIM.

THE STONE WAS BEGINNING TO ABSORB THE SUN'S WARMTH. HE COULD FEEL THE SUN ON THE BACK OF HIS ROBE. BUT HE WASN'T REALLY PAYING ATTENTION. HE DIDN'T NOTICE THE WIND, OR THE SAND DEVILS OR THE WARMTH OF THE SUN. INSTEAD HE WAS LOST IN THOUGH, IMAGINING THAT THIS WAS THE BEGINNING OF A NEW LIFE FOR HIM. HIS BIG CHANCE.

HE WAS YOUNG, ABOUT 25, BUT HIS LIFE HAD NOT BEEN VERY GOOD. ALL HIS LIFE, EXCEPT FOR THE LAST 13 MONTHS, HE HAD BEEN A SLAVE. BUT NOW HE, AND HIS FAMILY, WERE ABOUT TO ENTER CANAAN. A LAND WHERE THEY WOULD BE FREE, A PLACE WHERE THEY COULD PROSPER. THE LAND WOULD, IN A WORD, BE WONDERFUL. JUST HOW WONDERFUL HE WAS NOT SURE. THE SPIES HAD BEEN GONE FOR 35 DAYS AND THEY WERE DUE BACK SOON. BUT IT WOULD BE BETTER THAN THE WILDERNESS AND IT WOULD CERTAINLY BE BETTER THAN SLAVERY BACK IN EGYPT.

THOSE OF YOU WHO KNOW YOUR BIBLE, KNOW THE ENDING TO BARAK'S STORY. HIS STORY CONTINUES IN NUMBERS 13 & 14. TURN WITH ME. FIVE DAYS LATER THE SPIES RETURNED, AND THE MAJORITY REPORT MADE BARAK'S HEART FALL. READ 13: 32-33. FROM THE MOUNTAIN TOP OF HOPE TO THE PIT OF DESPAIR. IT WAS IMPOSSIBLE. THERE WOULD BE NO FUTURE IN CANAAN. READ 14:1-3.

WE LEARN IN NUM. 14:20 THAT GOD FORGAVE THEM FOR THEIR LACK OF FAITH. BUT THEY SPENT 40 MORE YEARS WANDERING IN THE WILDERNESS. AND THAT IS WHERE BARAK MADE THE TRANSITION FROM A YOUNG MAN TO AN OLD MAN. AND IN THE WILDERNESS HE DIED. HIS DREAMS OF A NEW LAND AND NEW LIFE IN CANAAN WERE NEVER FULFILLED. HIS ONE BIG CHANCE IN LIFE TURNED OUT TO BE HIS LAST CHANCE -- AND HE MISSED IT.

THE CANAAN EXPERIENCE HAS LONG BEEN RECOGNIZED AS A PARALLEL OR A SYMBOL OF OUR JOURNEY TO HEAVEN. OUR HYMNS SPEAK OF CANAAN OR CANAANLAND WHEN THEY REALLY MEAN HEAVEN. IN HEBREWS CHPT 3 & 4, THE FAILURE OF BARAK AND THE CHILDREN OF ISRAEL IS USED AS AN EXAMPLE OF THE FAILURE OF GOD'S PEOPLE TO ENTER INTO HIS REST. THE WRITER OF HEBREWS SAYS IN ESSENCE, "DO YOU WANT TO MAKE IT TO THE END? DO YOU WANT TO GO TO HEAVEN? DO YOU WANT TO ENTER INTO GOD'S REST? THEN DO NOT TURN AWAY WHEN YOU HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY TO ENTER IN."

IN FACT MY FRIENDS, THE BIBLE IS FILLED WITH STORIES ABOUT OPPORTUNITIES AND CLOSED DOORS. WHEN THE DOOR TO THE ARK CLOSED, IT CLOSED. HALF OF THE TEN VIRGINS IN THE PARABLE IN MT. 25 FOUND THAT THE DOOR WAS SHUT. REV. 3 SPEAKS OF GOD HOLDING THE KEY OF DAVID AND OPENING AND SHUTTING THE DOOR TO SALVATION. IN THE EXODUS, THE FLOOD AND THE PARABLE OF THE TEN VIRGINS, THE TERRIBLE RESULTS OF BLOWING YOUR OPPORTUNITY AND LETTING THE DOOR SHUT ARE PLAINLY SEEN.

THIS IDEA ABOUT THE DOOR CLOSING IS A SOBERING THOUGHT. BUT MAYBE NOT SOBERING ENOUGH. WHEN I'M UP HERE TALKING ABOUT THE DOOR TO SALVATION CLOSING, YOU ARE PROBABLY DOWN THERE THINKING ABOUT BEING EATEN BY A SHARK, BEING HIT BY LIGHTNING, CHOKING ON A PEANUT SHELL OR SOME OTHER UNLIKELY EVENT THAT WILL END YOUR LIFE AND CLOSE YOUR PERSONAL DOOR TO SALVATION.

IF SOMEONE ASKED ME "WHAT ARE THE ODDS OF YOU LIVING TILL THE END OF THIS DAY?" I WOULD SAY, "PRETTY GOOD!" AND MY LIFE INSURANCE COMPANY WOULD BACK ME UP ON THAT BECAUSE MY PREMIUMS ARE STILL RELATIVELY LOW. (EVER THOUGHT ABOUT WHAT A LOSING PROPOSITION LIFE INSURANCE IS? YOU PAY THEM MONEY TO BET YOU ARE NOT GOING TO LIVE. AND THE COMPANY IS BETTING THAT YOU ARE GOING TO LIVE LONGER THAN YOU THINK. THE ONLY WAY YOU WIN IS TO DIE! AND YOU PAY FOR THAT!)

THIS MORNING I AM NOT HERE TO TALK ABOUT THAT. NOT LIFE INSURANCE (I HAVE IT), AND NOT THE END OF YOUR LIFE. WHAT WE ARE GOING TO BE DISCUSSING IS OUR OPPORTUNITY TO HAVE JESUS COME NOW. WHETHER YOU ARE GOING TO LIVE THE REST OF YOUR LIFE IN THE WILDERNESS---OR WHETHER YOU ARE GOING TO BE IN CANAAN.

YOU MIGHT REMEMBER THAT ALMOST EXACTLY ONE YEAR AGO THAT I PREACHED TO YOU A SERMON THAT ARGUED THAT THE WORLD SITUATION IS SUCH THAT THE EVENTS PREDICTED IN REV. 13 COULD, FOR THE FIRST TIME IN MY LIFETIME, COME TO PASS. WE LOOKED AT HOW THE U.S. WAS RAPIDLY REACHING THE POINT OF BEING THE ONLY WORLD SUPERPOWER--AND THUS IN A POSITION TO MAKE ALL THE INHABITANTS OF THE WORLD WORSHIP THE BEAST.

AT THAT TIME THE SOVIET UNION WAS COMING APART. IT HAS NOW COME APART.

I SHARED WITH YOU THE RECENT SUPREME COURT PRECEDENT THAT WOULD ALLOW YOUR RELIGIOUS FREEDOMS TO BE TAKEN AWAY. MY VIEW IS THAT THEY ARE ABOUT TO HAND DOWN ANOTHER DECISION THAT WILL FURTHER PAVE THE WAY FOR THE EROSION OF YOUR RELIGIOUS LIBERTY.

I AM NOT GOING TO REPEAT THE ARGUMENTS THAT I PRESENTED THEN, BUT I THINK THAT MOST OF YOU AGREED WITH ME THEN AND AGREE WITH ME NOW THAT EVENTS ARE UNFOLDING WHICH POINT TO THE TIME OF THE LORD'S SECOND COMING.

IN FACT, THE RECENT REVELATION IN THE PRESS THAT PRESIDENT REAGAN AND THE POPE WORKED TOGETHER TO OVERTHROW THE COMMUNIST REGIME IN POLAND FURTHER STRENGTHENS THE EVIDENCE.

MY FRIENDS, I BELIEVE THAT WE ARE STANDING AT THE THRESHOLD OF ETERNITY. WE HAVE BEFORE US AN OPPORTUNITY. BUT I ALSO BELIEVE THAT GOD DOES NOT HAVE A HARD AND FAST TIME WHEN HE IS COMING AGAIN. IT IS NOT SOME FIXED TIME AND WHEN THE CLOCK HITS MIDNIGHT, BANG, HE IS OUT THE DOOR WITH THE HEAVENLY HOST.

AT THIS MOMENT YOU MAY BE SAYING, WAIT A MINUTE BRUCE, DO YOU HAVE ANY SCRIPTURE TO BACK UP THAT WILD IDEA? I READ IN MT. 24:36 WHERE JESUS SAID THAT NO ONE KNOWS THE DAY OR HOUR THAT JESUS IS GOING TO COME AGAIN--ONLY THE FATHER IN HEAVEN KNOWS. SINCE HE KNOWS, HE IS GOING TO COME WHEN HE IS GOING TO COME AND THAT IS ALL THERE IS TO IT! RIGHT!

WRONG!

THIS MORNING I WANT TO SHARE WITH YOU TWO BASIC PRINCIPLES OF BIBLICAL PROPHECY.

TURN WITH ME TO AS I READ ISAIAH 11:6-9. HOW MANY HAVE READ OR HEARD THIS PROPHECY BEFORE? WE UNDERSTAND THIS PROPHECY TO REFER TO HEAVEN, RIGHT?

I AM CERTAIN THAT IS NOT THE WAY THAT ISAIAH UNDERSTOOD IT OR HIS JEWISH LISTENERS UNDERSTOOD IT. AT THE TIME OF THIS PROPHECY THE NORTHERN KINGDOM OF ISRAEL HAD BEEN CONQUERED BY THE BABYLONIANS. ISAIAH WARNED THE PEOPLE OF THE SOUTHERN KINGDOM, JUDAH, THAT THEY WOULD BE BROUGHT INTO CAPTIVITY BY THE BABYLONIANS IF THEY DID NOT REPENT. AND IN 586 BC THAT VERY THING HAPPENED--JERUSALEM FELL TO THE BABYLONIANS.

IF YOU CONTINUE READING IN CHPTR. 11 OF ISAIAH, FROM v.10 TO THE END, YOU WILL SEE THAT THIS PROPHECY MAKES VERY SPECIFIC REFERENCES TO ISRAEL AND ITS NATIONAL ENEMIES. IN v. 10 IT SPEAKS OF THE PEOPLE BEING GATHERED FROM ASSYRIA AND BABYLONIA AND v.11 SAYS THAT GOD WILL REACH OUT HIS HAND "A SECOND TIME TO RECLAIM THE REMNANT." (THE FIRST TIME THAT GOD DID THAT WAS WHEN HE BROUGHT HIS PEOPLE OUT OF EGYPT.) NOW HE IS GOING TO BRING THEM OUT OF BABYLON.

WHAT GOD SAID TO HIS PEOPLE, WHAT ISAIAH BELIEVED, AND HIS READERS UNDERSTOOD, WAS THAT GOD WOULD LITERALLY RECLAIM THEM FROM THEIR CAPTIVITY IN BABYLON AND FULFILL THIS PROPHECY AGAINST THEIR ENEMY NEIGHBORS IF THEY WERE FAITHFUL. THIS PARADISE WAS TO EXIST ON EARTH! AND SOON!

BUT THIS PROPHECY WAS NEVER FULFILLED TO THEM.

THIS IS NOT THE ONLY PROPHECY LIKE THAT. THERE ARE TONS OF PROPHECIES IN THE OT WHICH POINT TO THE WORLDWIDE MISSION OF ISRAEL, THE INGATHERING OF THE GENTILES, DELIVERANCE FROM ISRAEL'S ENEMIES AND ETERNAL REST IN CANAAN. ( GEN 12:3; DEUT. 4:6-8; IS.2,11,35,42,49,52,56,60,61,65; ZECH. 2,8; JER. 17; EZK 37; JOEL 3; AND OTHERS. (SEE 4 SDABC AT p.34).

ANOTHER EXAMPLE IS FOUND IN EZK 38-39 WHICH TELLS OF THE BATTLE OF GOG AND MAGOG AND HOW ISRAEL TRIUMPHED OVER THESE ENEMIES. ONCE AGAIN, THIS NEVER HAPPENED.

WHY? BECAUSE GOD CAN NOT BE TRUSTED? BECAUSE THE PROPHET WAS LYING?

NO! BECAUSE THE PROPHECY WAS CONDITIONAL UPON OBEDIENCE. GOD MAKES THIS CLEAR IN DEUT. 28. HE SAID TO ISRAEL THAT IF YOU OBEY, THESE GOOD THINGS WILL HAPPEN TO YOU. BUT IF YOU DISOBEY, BAD THINGS ARE GOING TO HAPPEN. YOUR FUTURE IS UP TO YOU, ISRAEL.

SO THE FIRST PRINCIPLE OF BIBLICAL PROPHECY IS THAT IT IS CONDITIONAL-- CONDITIONAL UPON OBEDIENCE. THE PROPHETS PREDICTIONS ABOUT THE FUTURE WERE CONDITIONAL UPON THE COOPERATION OF THE PEOPLE.

THAT HAPPENED TO BARAK. THEIR ENTRANCE THE FIRST TIME THAT THEY APPROACHED CANAAN WAS CONDITIONAL UPON THEIR COOPERATION. BECAUSE THEY WOULD NOT OBEY, THE PROPHECY WAS DELAYED BY 40 YEARS--AND WAS FULFILLED TO THEIR CHILDREN!

THAT HAPPENED TO THE PROPHECY OF ISAIAH 11 THAT THE LAMB WILL LIE DOWN WITH THE LION. IT DIDN'T HAPPEN THEN, BUT WE BELIEVE THAT IT APPLIES TO THE SECOND COMING OF CHRIST.

THE SAME IS TRUE FOR THE PROPHECY CONCERNING THE BATTLE OF GOG AND MAGOG. IN REVELATION 20:7-9 JOHN PICKS UP THIS UNFULFILLED PROPHECY OF EZEKIEL AND THROUGH INSPIRATION APPLIES IT TO THE ATTACK UPON THE NEW JERUSALEM AT THE END OF THE MILLENNIUM.

ALTHOUGH THESE PROPHECIES ARE CONDITIONAL, WE SEE THEY WILL BE FULFILLED. FROM THIS WE LEARN THE SECOND PRINCIPLE OF BIBLE PROPHECY--THAT THE PROPHECY CAN HAVE TWO OR MORE DIFFERENT APPLICATIONS. THE SAME PROPHECY CAN BE FULFILLED IN TWO OR MORE FACTUAL SITUATIONS. GOD PROMISED THAT HE WAS GOING TO LEAD HIS PEOPLE INTO CANAAN. HE JUST DIDN'T SAY WHEN AND HE DID NOT SAY TO WHOM.

PAUL TALKS ABOUT THIS IDEA IN ROMANS 9-11. IN ROMANS 9:4-5 HE MENTIONS THAT THE ISRAELITES HAD A LOT OF PROMISES FROM GOD. THAT THEY HAD ENTERED INTO COVENANTS WITH GOD -- CONTRACTS ABOUT THE FUTURE. THE OBVIOUS PROBLEM WAS THAT THOSE PROMISES, THOSE CONTRACTS WERE NOT FULFILLED. SO PAUL SAYS DID GOD'S WORD FAIL? DID GOD BREAK HIS PROMISE?

NO! PAUL ANSWERS IN ROM.9:6 "IT IS NOT AS THOUGH GOD'S WORD HAD FAILED." INSTEAD HE TELLS US THAT WHAT WAS PROMISED TO LITERAL ISRAEL WILL NOW BE FULFILLED THROUGH SPIRITUAL ISRAEL. THAT THESE PROPHECIES ARE GOING TO HAVE AN ALTERNATIVE FULFILLMENT. THEY ARE GOING TO BE APPLIED TO A DIFFERENT SET OF FACTS.

IF THE PEOPLE DO NOT COOPERATE, THE DOOR CLOSES. GOD TRIES IT 40 YEARS LATER AS IN THE WILDERNESS, OR 400 YEARS LATER OR 4,000 YEARS LATER. IF THE PEOPLE FAIL THE DOOR CLOSES. GOD BRINGS EVENTS AROUND AGAIN AND THE DOOR OF OPPORTUNITY OPENS. FROM THAT WE SEE THAT WHEN THE PROPHECY IS FULFILLED IS TO A GREAT DEAL UP TO MAN.

ARE YOU WITH ME SO FAR? DO YOU THINK THIS PRINCIPLE THAT ONE PROPHECY CAN BE FULFILLED IN MORE THAN ONE FACTUAL SITUATION APPLIES TO CHRIST'S SECOND COMING? THAT DOOR OPENING AND SHUTTING STUFF APPLIES TO THE 2ND COMING?

OPEN YOUR BIBLES TO MATT. 24:3. READ. THE DISCIPLES ASSUMED THAT WHEN JERUSALEM WAS DESTROYED THAT WOULD BE THE END OF THE WORLD. JESUS SPENDS THE REST OF THE CHAPTER TELLING HIS DISCIPLES ABOUT THE DESTRUCTION OF JERUSALEM AND THE END OF THE WORLD. LETS READ v.27, 29-35.

TODAY WE BELIEVE THAT CHRIST SPOKE SEPARATELY ABOUT THE DESTRUCTION OF JERUSALEM AND THE END OF THE WORLD. THAT IS NATURAL BECAUSE THE WORLD DID NOT END WITH THE DESTRUCTION OF JERUSALEM.

BUT THE PART THAT I READ TO YOU DEALS SPECIFICALLY AND UNEQUIVOCALLY WITH THE SECOND COMING. DID YOU NOTICE v. 34? JESUS SAID THAT GENERATION WOULD NOT PASS BEFORE HE CAME AGAIN! AND IF THE DISCIPLES HAD ANY DOUBT ABOUT HIS WORDS, JESUS FOLLOWED v. 34 WITH THE STATEMENT IN v.35 THAT HEAVEN AND EARTH COULD PASS AWAY, BUT HIS WORDS WOULD NOT PASS AWAY! YOU CAN TAKE THAT TO THE BANK!

WHAT DID HE MEAN?

WITHOUT DOUBT THE DISCIPLES THOUGHT THAT HE MEANT THEIR GENERATION. MANY THINGS WRITTEN BY THE DISCIPLES IN THE NT LEAD ME TO BELIEVE THAT THE DISCIPLES THOUGHT JESUS WAS COMING BACK VERY SOON.

DO YOU REMEMBER THE PROBLEM IN THE THESS. CHURCH? THE PEOPLE WERE VERY CONCERNED WHEN A MEMBER DIED. THEY APPARENTLY UNDERSTOOD FROM PAUL THAT THEY WOULD BE ALIVE WHEN JESUS RETURNED. THEY WERE CONCERNED THAT ANYONE WHO DIED MIGHT LOSE OUT ON HEAVEN.

WE DON'T FIND PAUL SAYING, "SNAP OUT OF THAT SILLY IDEA! WE ARE ALL GOING TO DIE BEFORE CHRIST COMES." NO. WE READ PAUL'S ASSURANCE IN 1 THESS. 4:15 THAT THOSE WHO WERE ALIVE IN THAT CHURCH WHEN JESUS RETURNED WOULD NOT PRECEDE THOSE WHO DIED IN CHRIST. PAUL EXPECTED THAT JESUS WOULD RETURN IN HIS LIFETIME.

SO WHAT DO WE SAY ABOUT WHAT JESUS PREDICTED AND THE DISCIPLES UNDERSTANDING OF WHAT HE SAID?

I HAVE OFTEN HEARD IT SUGGESTED (POLITELY) THAT JESUS WAS "LYING" TO THE PEOPLE ABOUT WHEN HE WOULD COME. WELL, IT IS NOT SAID IN QUITE THAT WAY. IT GETS "GUSSIED UP." THEY SAY THAT IF GOD WERE REALLY UP FRONT WITH HIS DISCIPLES ABOUT WHEN HE WAS COMING, THAT THEY WOULD HAVE BEEN SO DISCOURAGED THAT THEY WOULD NOT HAVE WORKED SO HARD FOR HIM. THE BOTTOM LINE IS THAT GOD IS NOT REALLY BEING HONEST.

I REMEMBER ONCE THAT I HAD A NEW HONDA WITH LESS THAN 20K AND A SERIOUS ENGINE PROBLEM. I DECIDED THAT I WOULD TRADE IT IN AT A DEALER SO THAT THEY COULD FIX IT. SO I PATIENTLY EXPLAINED TO THIS ONE SALESMAN EVERYTHING THAT WAS WRONG WITH THE ENGINE OF THIS PERFECT LOOKING CAR. HE LISTENED ATTENTIVELY AND THEN SAID, "WHY DON'T WE KEEP THIS BETWEEN YOU AND ME. WE DON'T HAVE TO TELL THE MANAGER." I FIGURED THAT IF THAT FELLOW WAS WILLING TO LIE TO HIS OWN BOSS TO MAKE A DEAL, HE CERTAINLY WAS NOT GOING TO BE HONEST WITH ME.

THAT IS WHAT THESE PEOPLE ARE SAYING ABOUT GOD. IF WE KNEW THE TRUTH WE WOULD NOT "DO THE DEAL." SO THE BEST THING TO DO IS LIE!

I DO NOT FOR ONE MINUTE BELIEVE THAT OF MY GOD!

MY BELIEF IS THAT JESUS WAS WILLING TO COME AGAIN WITHIN THE LIFETIME OF THE GENERATION OF THOSE WHO SAW THE DESTRUCTION OF JERUSALEM! HE DID NOT LIE! HE WOULD HAVE COME!

BUT WHAT ABOUT THE PROPHECIES, YOU SAY? HOW COULD HE COME AROUND 70 AD WHEN JERUSALEM FELL WHEN HE WAS ENTERING THE SANCTUARY IN 1844?

IT IS A COMMON BELIEF AMONG CHRISTIAN SCHOLARS THAT THE 2300 DAY PROPHECY OF DAN 8:14 IS TIED TO THE DESECRATION OF THE SANCTUARY BY THE SELUCID KING ANTIOCHUS WHO SACRIFICED A PIG IN THE TEMPLE. LET ME HASTEN TO SAY THAT IS NOT THE POSITION OF OUR CHURCH. IT SAYS, "NO. THIS REFERS TO 1844 AND WHAT HAPPENED IN HEAVEN."

SINCE WE HAVE LEARNED THAT PROPHECIES CAN HAVE MORE THAN ONE APPLICATION, AND SINCE I BELIEVE THAT JESUS WAS NOT LYING TO HIS DISCIPLES, LET ME SUGGEST TO YOU THAT THE FIRST APPLICATION OF THIS PROPHECY MIGHT HAVE APPLIED TO ANTIOCHUS. BUT BECAUSE THE PEOPLE WERE NOT READY TO ENTER IN DURING THE GENERATION THAT SAW THE DESTRUCTION OF JERUSALEM, JESUS DID NOT RETURN THEN.

SO THE SECOND APPLICATION OF THE PROPHECY WAS TO 1844. LISTEN FOR A MINUTE TO WHAT EGW SAYS ABOUT THIS.

IN THE DA PP.631-32 SHE REFERS TO MT 24, THE SIGNS OF THE SUN DARKENING, STARS FALLING AND THE STATEMENT THAT THE GENERATION WHICH SEES THOSE WILL NOT PASS AWAY BEFORE CHRIST COMES. SHE SAYS "THESE SIGNS HAVE APPEARED." SHE WROTE THAT IN HER BOOK PUBLISHED IN 1898. STANDARD SDA TEACHING, IS THAT THE EVENTS SHE REFERRED TO--THE DARKENING OF THE SUN, OCCURRED IN MAY 19, 1780. THE FALLING OF THE STARS OCCURRED ON NOVEMBER 13, 1833.

SO WE ARE MORE THAN 200 YEARS PAST THE DARKENING OF THE SUN, ALMOST 150 YEARS PAST THE FALLING OF THE STARS AND NEARLY 100 YEARS PAST THE PUBLICATION OF EGW'S BOOK ABOUT THIS. BY ANY DEFINITION OF THE WORD "GENERATION," THAT GENERATION HAS PAST! AND IT DID NOT SEE THE SECOND COMING OF CHRIST!

EGW TALKS ABOUT THIS PROBLEM. SHE WROTE IN 1901, IN HER BOOK EVANGELISM (P.696) THAT BECAUSE OF INSUBORDINATION WE MIGHT HAVE TO LIVE IN THIS WORLD MANY MORE YEARS.

SHE BELIEVED THAT CHRIST SHOULD HAVE COME BY THEN. THAT AN OPPORTUNITY WAS MISSED, AND THAT A DOOR CLOSED.

OUR BIBLE COMMENTARY SUGGESTS THE SAME THING IN VOLUME 7 PAGE 729 "AT ANY ONE OF VARIOUS CRITICAL POINTS IN THE HISTORY OF THIS WORLD, DIVINE JUSTICE COULD HAVE PROCLAIMED, "IT IS DONE!" AND CHRIST MIGHT HAVE COME TO INAUGURATE HIS RIGHTEOUS REIGN....HE GAVE THE CHURCH OF APOSTOLIC TIMES THE PRIVILEGE OF COMPLETING THE GOSPEL COMMISSION. ANOTHER SUCH OPPORTUNITY CAME WITH THE GREAT SECOND ADVENT AWAKENING OF THE 19TH CENTURY. BUT IN EACH INSTANCE GOD'S CHOSEN PEOPLE FAILED TO TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THE OPPORTUNITY THUS GRACIOUSLY ACCORDED THEM."

CLAP (DOOR CLOSING)

MY FRIENDS, I WANT TO SUGGEST TO THIS MORNING, THAT ALMOST 2000 YEARS AFTER THE DESTRUCTION OF JERUSALEM, 200 YEARS AFTER THE SIGNS OF THE END OF THE WORLD AND 100 YEARS AFTER THE PERIOD OF 1844 AND EGW'S WRITINGS ABOUT HER BELIEF THAT THE END OF THE WORLD SHOULD HAVE COME BY 1901, THAT WE HAVE ANOTHER OPPORTUNITY TO ENTER IN: WE ARE AGAIN STANDING AT THE ENTRANCE TO CANAAN.

FOR AT LEAST THE THIRD TIME IN HISTORY EVENTS ARE TAKING PLACE SO THAT THE PROPHECIES ARE ABLE TO BE FULFILLED.

WE HAVE BEFORE US A WINDOW OF OPPORTUNITY TO ENTER INTO HEAVEN. WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO ABOUT IT?

THIS IS NOT LIKE SALVATION, AN INDIVIDUAL DECISION. CONSIDER CALAB AND JOSHUA. THEY WERE WILLING TO ENTER, BUT COULD NOT BECAUSE OF THE REST. THIS IS A GROUP MATTER. IF YOU WANT TO GO NOW, GOD IS WAITING. I HAVE NO DOUBT THAT HE IS WILLING TO WAIT A HUNDRED MORE YEARS. BUT THAT IS GOING TO BE PRETTY IRRELEVANT TO YOU.

IF YOU WANT TO ENTER IN, AND I DO, WE HAD BETTER GET SERIOUS. SERIOUS ABOUT ENTREATING OTHERS TO GO IN.

SERIOUS ABOUT SOUNDING THE WARNING THAT THE TIME IS NOW. SERIOUS ABOUT SHAKING OFF THE LUKEWARM NATURE OF LADIOCIA,

SERIOUS ABOUT PRAYING FOR THE LATTER RAIN,

SERIOUS ABOUT BELIEVING THAT WE CAN POSSESS CANAAN.

WE CANNOT DO IT ALONE, BUT IT CAN START WITH YOU.

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