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Balancing The Books



"6 For after all it is only just for God to repay with affliction those who afflict you, and to give relief to you who are afflicted and to us as well when the Lord Jesus will be revealed from heaven with His mighty angels in flaming fire, dealing out retribution to those who do not know God and to those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. These will pay the penalty of eternal destruction, away from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power, 10 when He comes to be glorified in His saints on that day, and to be marveled at among all who have believed—for our testimony to you was believed." 
Good Morning My Beloved,
Welcome to worship this Lord's Day!
We are so glad to have all of you here with us today. I pray that you will be richly blessed.
Let's be honest, there are times when life just wears us down and we need a break. If often seems like we just can't catch a break in this life. Trials and tragedies seem to be a part of our every day life. We discovered in last lesson, however, that our peace and our joy, is not dependent upon our circumstances, but on Jesus Christ! Relief will happen when Jesus comes back to receive His own unto Himself. Yes, Jesus comes to give rest to the believer; but retribution to the unbeliever and the make-believer. The believer is released from injustice and suffering.
However, the unbeliever's trouble will just begin. He will judge those who are not saved. Those who die without Christ as their Savior will be punished eternally. This reminds us that the only way to the Father is through the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Jesus Himself told us in John chapter 14, verse 6, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me.
The greatest punishment of Hell is not the darkness, screaming, or burning; it is the eternal separation from God. I'd like you to understand something, with this knowledge, you may not get relief from persecution or pain on this Earth until Jesus comes back. As I was talking to someone about the up's and downs with my health this week, while preparing our message for today, a friend, in attempting to make me feel better, said "God never gives us more than we can handle." I explained to this person that they were wrong. On my own, I can’t handle anything. The truth in that statement is this, "God never gives us more than we can handle through Him." For when I am weak, He is strong!
Let us bow our heads.
Heavenly Father,
We again, thank You for Your Word. We are so richly blessed by Your teaching, Your correction , help us that we might make application to our hearts what You have in store for us today. Father, we are overwhelmed that You could love us so much. We acknowledge that we are so unworthy of such great grace, mercy and love. 
Lord, we thank You for the hope, the eternal promise, that pain, sorrow and injustice would come to an end. Remind us that any suffering we endure pales in comparison to the glory that awaits us. And when Jesus is revealed as Lord, justice will at last be done. Lord, these teachings in Your Word for today, bear much fruit in our lives.
It is in His precious name we ask and pray
Today's Message: Balancing The Books

The opening of a letter typically sets the tone for the remainder of the letter. For example, when we write a letter of complaint, we generally do not begin with warm, fuzzy greetings. Similarly, a letter making a formal request will not generally begin with informal salutations. Such practices were also the case in antiquity, where the form and tone of the opening of a letter, set the stage for what was to follow, while reflecting the current relationship between the writer and the recipient.

Having dispatched Timothy and hearing his subsequent report, Paul penned I Thessalonians, what has been determined to be one of the earliest epistles in the New Testament. Still having some difficulties, Paul penned his second epistle to bring encouragement to the Thessalonians believers, whom he dearly loved. 

Open your Bibles with to II Thessalonians chapter one, verses 6 through 10. As we continue in our study of this wonderful epistle, we will be unpacking the treasures of verses 6 through 10. I would like to encourage you to follow along with me, if you will, as I read to you to set the text in our minds. 
"For after all it is only just for God to repay with affliction those who afflict you, and to give relief to you who are afflicted and to us as well when the Lord Jesus will be revealed from heaven with His mighty angels in flaming fire, dealing out retribution to those who do not know God and to those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. These will pay the penalty of eternal destruction, away from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power, when He comes to be glorified in His saints on that day, and to be marveled at among all who have believed—for our testimony to you was believed." 
Jesus Himself, told us of His coming, in John 14:3, when He said " If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself, that where I am, there you may be also."
The key statement in this passage is in verse 7, "...The Lord Jesus shall be revealed..."  For ever and always. the Christian reads the Scripture and it points to the climax of history being the return of Jesus Christ. He has been exalted as the sovereign Lord of the church, as the faithful High Priest unto God for His people. The day is coming when He shall be revealed!
We read in the last part of verse 6 tells us that there is a future impending payday, "For after all it is only just for God to repay with affliction those who afflict you." The message is clear, people will eventually reap in accordance with what they’ve sown. God operates with a law of compensation. A day of judgment is coming!
I believe that the reason why so many people believe that God's judgment is unfair, if it even exists at all, is because they have a very low view of God's holiness and a very high view of their own righteousness. They have they illusion that their self-righteousness, is supreme over everyone and everything else.  And, when we make God appear to be small, we can easily make ourselves appear much bigger than we are. 
Beloved, do not be deceived! His perfect righteous character and great power is more than we can ever imagine. Even the earth, and all that is in it, will tremble at the sound of His voice!
As Christians, we are not to retaliate against those who hurt us. We are to trust God, that knows what He is doing, let God deal with those who hurt you. God will deal with those that hurt His children. I know that some of you are probably thinking, "It sure doesn't look like it. It seems more like those who hurt me prosper." Well, all I can assure you is, that God is in fact, in control, it is not up to you or me, to serve justice upon these people.. rest assured, the day will come! Because God is just, He will handle it! However, we must be careful that we do not see ourselves as the judge and executioner of God's holy vengeance. That said, I would to also remind you, that there is however, nothing wrong with crying out to God, asking Him to take vengeance on our enemies.
In Psalm 35:1, the Psalmist says "Contend, O Lord, with those who contend with me; Fight against those who fight against me."
And, in Psalm 139:21-22 "Do I not hate those who hate You, O Lord? And do I not loathe those who rise up against You? I hate them with the utmost hatred; They have become my enemies."
Beloved, allow me to tell that as we hate the ways of the wicked, we must also hate the wicked ways of our own heart!
In verse 7, Paul tells us that "and to give relief to you who are afflicted and to us as well when the Lord Jesus will be revealed from heaven with His mighty angels in flaming fire." It's important for us to understand the big picture that is presented in the word of God. You might think of it this way: there are two dominant themes in Scripture, God must redeem the people and he must also restore the kingdom. 
The concept of God redeeming the people, we see the Lord Jesus Christ pictured as the sacrificial Lamb, as the Savior, as the suffering servant; and with respect to the idea of restoring the kingdom. And, here, we see him presented in a very different way! Now, we see Him presented as the Lion of the tribe of Judah, as the Messiah, as the sovereign King. Lord Jesus. This is in complete contrast to the former image of Jesus. Once, the promised Lamb in the Book of Genesis, after the original sin, a substitute that had to die to cover that sin, now a picture of a coming Redeemer, that would one day make atonement for the sins of the people. Throughout Scripture, we see this Lamb pictured in Israel's deliverance from Egypt. We see it in the sacrificial system in the Old Testament, it's there in virtually every recorded story.
Then, we see the Lord Jesus as He arrives on the scene, God incarnate, the Son of God, in the Gospels; a Lamb that opened not his mouth; the one who would die to save sinners. All throughout the New Testament, we see all of these signs that point to His return as King of kings. Lord of lords. We see His humiliation. Then at the end of the New Testament, there in the Book of Revelation, we see him pictured in His exaltation, as the Lion of Judah, the King of Israel, who has promised to return in vengeance to judge those who have rejected him, to establish His glorious kingdom upon this earth for a thousand years, to display to the world, the splendor of who He really is.
For thousands of years, men have mocked Him. Especially that in His Word, of the promises of His return and judgement. II Peter 3:3-4, says "Know this first of all, that in the last days mockers will come with their mocking, following after their own lusts, and saying, "Where is the promise of His coming? For ever since the fathers fell asleep, all continues just as it was from the beginning of creation."
If you were to go up to the average person ask, "Do you believe the Jesus will return to the earth, in unimaginable glory, to pour out His wrath upon all who do not know Him as their Savior, those who refuse to obey His commands recorded in the Gospels?" Watch what happens! Given the society we live in today, it is reasonable to assume, that most people would look at you like you had lost your mind!
This is exactly what Peter is addressing in II Peter 3, verse 5-6 "For when they maintain this, it escapes their notice that by the word of God the heavens existed long ago and the earth was formed out of water and by water, through which the world at that time was destroyed, being flooded with water."
In verses 8-9, are some of the clearest, are what I believe are some of the most troubling words in the Bible about the fate of those who refuse to put their faith in Christ. "dealing out retribution to those who do not know God and to those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. These will pay the penalty of eternal destruction, away from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power."
When I read verses 8-9, the obvious picture that comes to my mind is the scene that is described in Revelation 3:20, "Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and will dine with him, and he with Me."
What does it mean in verse 8 when it says "those who do not know God." ? Allow me to explain, we all know those people today who claim that they know God, yet they fail to have a biblical understanding of who God really is.  Beloved, you have to truly know Him, in order to properly worship Him. In other words, those who do not know God refers to those who are willfully ignorant of who he really is. The God Whom they have willingly and continuously offended by violating His commands. 

I'd like you to understand, that those who do not obey the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ, are rejecting the promise and the offer of salvation by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone, and we must understand that such a rejection is a punishable offense in the eyes of God. This is crucial to understand. You cannot claim Christ, and willingly disobey His Word. I believe that we have a lot of Christians today, who havebeen mislead into thinking, you just have to confess Christ, believing He is the Son of God, died and rose again on the third day to redeem the lost, and that's all there is to it. They are mislead into thinking they can be a Christian and lives just as the world lives! That's a foolish and damnable way of thinking! It is a clear act of high treason against God. 

Christians today need to understand that trusting in Christ as your Savior, that must never be a decision that a man makes merely for the purpose of personal benefit. We must understand that it is a decision that requires an act of obedience to His Word.

In verse 9, "These will pay the penalty of eternal destruction, away from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power." This is the idea is that of eternal destruction, eternal ruin, not of annihilation as some are teaching.  The torture and torment of Hell will not end, it is eternal.

Now, allow me to explain this further, biblically, because I know that some people get confused about this. I submit the parable that Jesus Himself taught in Luke chapter 16. The parable of the rich man and the poor man, remember the poor man, Lazarus. I'd like you to note, that the rich man was not annihilated, but rather he was in great torment in Hades, which is the realm of the wicked dead who await their final judgment.
Then, to further support this truth, Revelation 14:11, no need to turn there, I'll just quickly read that to you, "And the smoke of their torment goes up forever and ever; they have no rest day and night, those who worship the beast and his image, and whoever receives the mark of his name." 
And, just to make sure you get this, that you understand completely, in Isaiah 66:24 it says "Then they will go forth and look On the corpses of the men Who have transgressed against Me. For their worm will not die And their fire will not be quenched; And they will be an abhorrence to all mankind."
Scripture does not teach that "those who do not know God and who reject His Gospel" just one day disappear, that they will be annihilated. Scripture just doesn't teach that! What the Bible says, what Scripture clearly teaches, is that they enter into an eternal hell. Merriam-Webster defines eternal as being "continuing without interruption, lasting forever." This is not just merely a ceasing to exist, it is a ruination that is everlasting. It is a ceasing to enjoy anything enjoyable. Hell is not a place of partying, it is a place of eternal hopelessness and misery!

Beloved, this so critical, I want to give you just one more, before we move on, Revelation 20:10
"And the devil who deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are also; and they will be tormented day and night forever and ever." This is forever, it is permanent, for Satan, the deceiver, his angels and those who not know God, all those who reject the Gospel!
 Then in verse 10, Paul says "when He comes to be glorified in His saints on that day, and to be marveled at among all who have believed—for our testimony to you was believed."

Here, Paul is referring to the survivors of the pre kingdom judgments in the time of the tribulation. They are going to marvel at Christ as he comes. They are going to even marvel at all of us who are with Christ. As I  begin to think about this, I just find it difficult to contain my joy, my gratitude, I want to rejoice, knowing that, on that glorious day, I will finally be able to glorify Christ in the way that I’ve only hoped that I could throughout my life and you will as well. This will be a time when every vestige of sin will have been banished; when the effulgence of the glory of God will be able to emanate from me and from you; where the countenance of His majesty will blaze off of our face. 

I don't know about you, but when I often look in the mirror, I see things that I do not like. My hair thinning, my face aging, my body changing. I believe that most of you can understand what I'm speaking about here. There are things we just do not like about ourselves. And, quite frankly, I see more and more week after week, year after year. 
I don't believe that anybody looks at you and me, today, and marvels at Christ. That's not to say that they don't see some of Christ in us, but, compared to what they will someday see when the Lord returns, this is merely the flickering flame of a candle. I just marvel at this and they will marvel at it as well. When Christ comes to be glorified in His saints on that day and to be marveled at among all who believe.
I believe that this is precisely the reason that Paul said in Romans 8:18, "For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us."
Then, in verse 19, listen to what he says "For the anxious longing of the creation waits eagerly for the revealing of the sons of God." On that glorious day, He will transform our humble bodies into conformity with the body of His glory by the exertion of His power! What an incredible promise and truth! Beloved, what a hope we have in Christ.
In Closing....
For those of you who may still be unsaved, destined for an eternity in hell, I pray that today, would be that day, that you would humble yourselves, humble your hearts, while there is still time. That you would then obey the Gospel of Jesus Christ, so that you too may experience this day of our Lord Jesus, as one who will be with us in glory! And, not as one who will experience the most terrifying day, in all of history, a day like the world has never known, nor will again, the judgement of Jesus Christ.
May it be so.. 
And now may the Lord bless you and keep you;

the Lord make His face shine upon you,
And be gracious to you;

The Lord lift up His countenance upon you,
And give you peace.

Now and forever, in Jesus' name

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The Brian Monzon Ministries



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