The Crisis - Judgement is Coming

Uploaded by toongabbieanglican on 21.10.2012

>> STEPHEN LIGGINS: Well good morning everyone lovely to see you.
Let me pray for us
Loving Heavenly Father thank you that you make your thoughts known to us.
Thank you that you speak to us through your word
we pray this morning that we would hear what you have to say to us today.
We pray this in your Son’s powerful name Jesus Christ.
Faster than a speeding bullet.
More powerful than a locomotive.
Able to leap tall buildings in a single bound.
What’s that up in the sky?
Is it a bird?
Is it a plane?
No its Superman.
Superman perhaps the ultimate superpower superhero of all times.
The man of steel who from the late 1930s has been appearing in
radio plays, comic books, tv series and ah movies.
Superman who has these incredible powers
which he doesn’t just exercise for the sake of it
but he uses his powers for good
because we know that Superman fights a never ending battle
for truth, justice and the American way
[Congregration Laugh]
Now looking at those three things for which he fights
I thing most of us would agree that at two of them are good
Some of us may question the American way
Some of us may not
But truth and justice are things which it is worth fighting a never ending battle for
I think we still think that
And this morning we are going to be particularly thinking about justice
Justice being a good thing
Something worth thinking about
Justice a very popular idea.
We like the idea of justice
People getting what they deserve
We like it when people get what they deserve when they deserve something good to happen
to them
Do you remember the London Olympics?
Do you remember Sally Pearson in the Women's 100m hurdles?
She had been training hard for years.
She's the world champion
I think she went into the final as favourite
and she women by 0.2 of a second
and we were happy because well firstly she was Australian
but secondly because she got what she deserved didn't she we liked that
now we don't like it when people get what they don't deserve
lets stay with sport for a moment
and mention that unfortunate man Mr Lance Armstrong
it seems now that many of Lance's incredible performances
where assisted by incredible drugs.
People don't like seeing people getting the credit
when what they have done has been assisted by performance enhancing drugs in sport
and if the allegations are truth ah it seems that justice has been done
because he has now been found out for it.
We like seeing people get what they deserve when they deserve it
if they don't deserve it we don't really what they to get it.
Think of the area of criminal justice
we like people getting what they deserve.
Just over a week ago was the 10th anniversary
where we commemorated the Bali bombings.
You may recall on 12th October 2002
members of the extremist muslim group
JI detonated a number of bombs in the Kudda district of Bali
202 people where killed including 88 Australians
As you would recall people did not want the assassins
to get away with it they wanted justice didn't they
Since then the Indonesian police caught I think
all or most of the people responsible for those bombings
and they were brought to justice.
Three of them were actually executed for their involvement in it.
Now in the last week I heard a lady speaking on the ABC radio
She was the mother of one of the girls who had been tragically killed
in the Bali bombings.
And she was asked about those three gentlemen who'd been convicted
sentenced and executed for their involvement in the crime.
This lady said we're glad they got the bullet between the eyes
They deserved the bullet between the eyes and that's what they got.
Now you may or may not agreed with capital punishment.
That's a topic for another time.
But I think we call all appreciate that lady's desire that justice was done.
She didn't want the people who had murdered her daughter and 201 other people
to get away with it.
We want justice.
We like justice.
Justice. Judgement is a popular topic.
But at the same time while justice and judgement are popular
it's also an unpopular topic
particularly when that justice and judgement relates to God.
God's justice and God's judgement.
Suddenly when that case justice and judgement become unpopular.
Imagine you were thinking of inviting a friend to church next week.
Would you rather bring them to a church service where the topic was
God's love or God's Judgement?
If you were inviting your next door neighbour and saying hey
come along to church next week we've got a really good talk
on the topic of
would you rather say God's love or God's judgement at that point.
God's judgement is not in any way a popular topic for many people
Why is that? That justice is so popular
but God's justice is so unpopular.
Well I suspect people like justice when it involves someone out there
someone else
but when justice or judgement relates to them themselves
which I think most people realise when it comes to God's judgement
it's suddenly less appealing
it impacts on them
it may affect on what they do
it may suggest that they may change certain things
and people resent that.
Who is God to tell me what to do?
Who is God to tell me how to live my life?
They might think.
God's judgement also doesn't seem to fit with our tolerant culture.
God's judgement isn't that a medieval idea?
They think
Well for starters it's not medieval is it comes from a long time before that.
But that's what some people think.
And also people a suspicious of God's judgement because
announcements of God's judgement is coming are often associated with crackpots
People with long hair holding up signs saying
The end of the world is nigh
God's judgement is coming
On the 1st January 2000
Oh no the 1st January 2002
On no the 17th April 2002 you know
It's associated with things like that.
So judgement and justice which in one sense
is a popular subject particularly when associated with God
is a very unpopular subject.
I call it the unpopular popular subject.
Well this morning we are going to address that unpopular popular subject.
Because we are going through the book of Joel
and we have reached Joel chapter 3.
And Joel chapter 3 at least verse 1-16 is all about God's judgement
The judgement of God.
The bible doesn't avoid what maybe unpalatable topics for some
and because we at Toongabbie preach through the bible
we don't avoid what are sometimes to some people unpalatable topics.
But can I say God's judgement is not an unpalatable topic.
I want to suggest to you there are many good things about God's judgement.
The first one is that it's an encouraging topic
because we will be reminded this morning that God's judgement and justice is fair
it's fair.
Secondly it's good to be reminded about God's judgement
because it puts us in touch with reality.
The reality is that God is going to judge the world
now we can recognise that or we can stick our heads in the sand
and try and ignore it.
Isn't it better to live in the real world?
Thirdly and a good reason think about it is that God's judgement
puts things into perspective.
If we realise that God is going to judge the world
somethings strike us as important
somethings may strike us really at the end of the day as not being that important.
And fourthly it's good to think about God's judgement to see what the bible has to say
because so many weird and wonderful things are said about it
let's get back to the scriptures
and see what the word of God actually does have
to say.