By Jay Grant
We’ve been studying the Olivet Discourse these past few weeks. Jesus gives a very strong exhortation concerning His Second Coming, telling us several times to be always watching for His return, and not to fall into a mediocre or apathetic place in our relationship with Him. This call to alertness is repeated many times in the New Testament. Lots of these verses speak to being ready and alert, whether Jesus is coming in our lifetime or not.
Listed below are just a handful of these exhortations. Those of us meeting every morning have also felt the same exhortation to be praying, watching, and staying alert. We are living in a very chaotic world right now, and if ever there was an hour to be steadfast, it is now. May God encourage and challenge you in the selected verses chosen…
“Be on the ALERT, for you do not know which day your Lord is coming.” Matthew 24:42
Amplified version of “alert” – “Watch, give strict attention, be cautious and active.”
“Be on the ALERT, for you do not know the day nor the hour.” Matthew 25:13
“Take HEED, keep constantly ALERT, for you do not know what the appointed time is.” Mark 13:33
“You must be READY, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour that you do not expect.” Luke 12:40
“Be on GUARD, that your hearts not be weighted down with dissipation and drunkenness and the worries of life, and that day should come upon you suddenly.” Luke 21:34
“Know this, that is already the hour for you to AWAKEN from sleep (“rouse to reality” AMP), for now salvation is nearer to us than we believed.” Romans 13:11
“Devote yourselves to prayer, keeping ALERT in it, always giving thanksgiving.” Colossians 4:2
“Let us not sleep as others do, but let us be ALERT and SOBER.” 1 Thessalonians 5:6
Amplified – “let us keep wide awake, alert, watchful, cautious, and on our guard, and let us be sober (calm, collected, and circumspect)
“You too be PATIENT; strengthen your hearts, for the coming of the Lord is at hand.” James 5:8
“GIRD your minds for action, keep SOBER in spirit, fix your hope completely on the grace to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ.” 1 Peter 1:13
“The end of all things is at hand; therefore keep SOUND MINDED and ALERT for the purpose of prayer.” 1 Peter 4:7
“Be on GUARD lest, being carried away by sin, you fall from your own steadfastness.” 2 Peter 3:17
You’ll notice there is a strong emphasis on prayer in some of these verses. Praying is a great help in always being ready, in season and out.
Happy Rosh Hashanah: This feast, Rosh Hashanah, is the beginning of a new year on the Hebrew Calendar. Also known as the Feast of Trumpets, Rosh Hashanah is recorded in Leviticus 23:24, where it is called a “holy convocation.” In rabbinic tradition, the blowing of the trumpet signifies a threefold purpose: 1. A call to repentance from any habitual sin 2. A reminder of their covenant relationship with G-d 3. And a blast of the trumpet is to confound and confuse Satan, the one who accuses Israel of their sins and shortcomings. Rosh Hashanah, a ten day feast, began last Sunday. These ten days are also called “Ten days of Awe”, a time of introspection, self-analysis and a time of new beginnings.
Suggested Scripture This Week: Matthew, Chapters 24 & 25; read at least a couple of times