Who does this slogan belong to? "Spend the rest of your life"
Lottery - "spend the rest of your life". It's a great slogan because it's kind of half not there - you know - Spend the rest of your life…Yeah - doing what?
But that's just it - SPEND the rest of your life. SPEND MONEY! Be able to spend money and not worry about it!
Many of us dream of being able to do that - we buy the lottery and lotto tickets each week in the hope the big one'll drop on us!
Did you know that here are stacks and stacks of unclaimed wins at the NSW Lottery office? Most of them are less than $50. But SOME of them are a bit bigger that that…
TWO $2 Jackpot Lottery drawn in 1999 worth $100,000 ea!
Lotto 98/32 12/08/1998 $728,548
OZ Lotto 188 23/09/1997 $3,348,326
You just can’t imagine how someone wouldn't go in to claim $3.3 million dollars - can you?
The only explanation must be that they JUST DON'T REALISE that the prize is theirs.
That it's there for the claiming.
If I had that I could spend the rest of my life - you too!
I don’t know if you've notice yet but we're not that far away from Christmas! 3 weeks and one day to be precise.
And if you're anything like me you're looking at buying presents for people.
And you're worrying about the spending - how much to spend? How much on who? And HOW will I pay for it?
Christmas brings extra spending.
And not just gifts -
food & drink
Coop's March meltdown
I'm trying to be a 'saver' during the year so I can spend up at Christmas time and not get slugged by all the bills in January and February!
And wouldn’t it BE GREAT to be able to spend the rest of your life and not have to worry?
Christmas is our yearly celebration of
God spending HIS life -
sending HIS SON
to be a human sacrifice for the wrongdoings of all people everywhere.
Christmas is about arrival of this world's Saviour (not "saver")
Matthew's account of the birth of Jesus Christ
Mt 1:18 This is how the birth of Jesus Christ came about: His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be with child through the Holy Spirit.
Mt 1:19 Because Joseph her husband was a righteous man and did not want to expose her to public disgrace, he had in mind to divorce her quietly.
Mt 1:20 But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit.
Mt 1:22 All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet:
Mt 1:23 “The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel”—which means, “God with us.”
Mt 1:24 When Joseph woke up, he did what the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took Mary home as his wife.
Mt 1:25 But he had no union with her until she gave birth to a son. And he gave him the name Jesus. Christmas is about the arrival of Jesus - the Son of God.
Born miraculously from a virgin.
Born INTO this world in order to DIE for this world.
So IT'S ALL GOD'S FAULT - we're struggling with our own spending, all because LONG BEFORE today Jesus arrived in our world - a fact of history. You can go and see the town he was born in today. We know that he really was walking on this planet way back then.
But he didn't stay a baby, did he?
Talledega nights "The ballad of Ricky Bobby" saying grace at the table…
Jesus DID grow up. And as a grown man submitted himself to death - death on a Roman tool of execution - a wooden cross.
Y'see - Jesus spends ALL his life in order to save ours. He died on a cross
Easter - our other yearly celebration
We call GOOD Friday GOOD because it's the day Christ took on himself all of God's anger at people who don’t treat him as he should be treated.
His death in our place
1Peter 3:18 a swap
1Pe 3:18 For Christ died for sins once for all, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God. Y'see - you and me - the bible says - we NEED a Saviour because we are all guilty in God's eyes - guilty of NOT TREATING God as OUR God. He created each one of us - and we should give him our respect and honor and obedience.
But we don’t, do we? Most of us give God some credit for BEING OUT THERE SOMEWHERE. I mean we celebrate Christmas, don’t we?
But we don't always let God rule our thoughts
and our words
and our actions all the time do we?
I know I don’t. And I know the bible says NO ONE DOES.
So we're 'all in the gun' in God's eyes. God has a watertight case against each one of us. And when we die - when we face up to our maker - that's when the fertilizer will REALLY hit the fan.
THAT IS UNLESS we've latched onto the SAVIOUR whom God sent. The Saviour who SPENT his life as a SUPPLEMENT - a stand in - a scapegoat - for those of us who will believe.
Y'see - on the cross - Jesus takes God's anger at OUR unfaithfulness onto HIMSELF. Draws God's fire onto himself, which means God can SPARE those who ask to be spared.
read paper article…
Did you hear about a bloke from Cessnock, named Michael Thompson? A couple of weeks ago Michael saw a truck driver swerving his semitrailer on Wollombi Road, Bellbird about 6.50am as he was driving his car in the opposite direction to work. Mr Thompson turned his car around, sped past the truck and parked his black Holden Commodore after noticing the driver was slumped over the wheel.
He then ran across the road and climbed on to the moving heavy vehicle, pushed the semiconscious driver to the passenger seat, put the gear into neutral and pulled the brake.
The 50-year-old diabetic truck driver, had fallen unconscious because of low blood sugar levels, and was taken to Cessnock District Hospital and remained in a stable condition last night.
The ambulance officer who was called to the scene, Paul Alexander, said Mr Thompson's courage had averted a major calamity.
"In my 10 years in the service I have never seen or heard of anything like this. He is an absolute lifesaver. Even though the truck was not travelling at a great speed, it is an enormous vehicle and had he slipped and fallen under there is no doubt he would have been crushed to death.
"Had that truck driven into the nearby homes it would have been an absolute disaster ... and once we had stabilised the patient, [Mr Thompson] went off to work as though nothing had happened."
The scary part, said Mr Thompson, was running across the road toward the out-of-control truck. But once he climbed on to the truck's running board, his immediate threat was oncoming traffic and the rows of houses either side of the road.
"Personally I thought I was pretty safe, it was the people around me, the houses and cars coming the other way that I was worried about.
"I jumped in and pushed the driver to the passenger side and knocked it into the neutral gear and pulled up the brake. I was standing on the side of the truck trying to stop people to get help - one guy had a phone with him so I told him to ring the ambulance.
"[The truck driver] couldn't speak or anything ... I saw jelly beans lying on the floor so that indicated to me it was some type of fit."
How cool is that bloke - Michael Thompson? What a hero!
And y'see - the parallel is Jesus is our rescuer - we're headed for trouble with God and Jesus comes to our rescue! And Christmas is when we celebrate the arrival of the rescuer - who DOES the rescuing some 30 years later on the cross.
Really GOOD NEWS!
I mean it's really GOOD news God did this with Jesus! Great news. He loves you and me so much that he gives us a way to be in the right with him. Through trusting in - believing in - having FAITH in Jesus Christ.
Putting YOUR Faith in Jesus means being able to spend the rest of your life
spend it in connection with a church family who are spending the rest of their life too.
spend it growing to know and appreciate better day by day, week by week, year by year what Jesus has done
It means you can spend ETERNITY enjoying Paradise. Heaven. All good - nothing bad. The bible describes Heaven as a city, with rivers and trees and food and safety. An existence of only GOOD and NO BAD at all.
ONLY GOOD - enjoying living in perfection with God and with God's people.
So, you see, Christmas is about 'spending'
- God spending his son Jesus
- so we can spend ETERNITY with Him.
- so we can us spend the rest of our lives in response to this prize.
You just can’t imagine how people don’t get onto the Lottery office to claim their prizes can you? ESPECIALLY when we're talking millions of dollars!
I mean - mate - it's theirs for the taking isn't it?
But they just MUST NOT BE AWARE of their prize! So it sits there UNCLAIMED.
And SO TOO with Jesus Christ and SALVATION waiting in him -
If you haven't already, I encourage you to find out more about Jesus. Go to church - try it out - and see how good it is these days, and see if you want to spend the rest of your life 'in the right with God'. Getting to know more about following Jesus.
And if you have put your trust in Jesus, I hope you'll be encouraged to keep on growing in him - spending your life getting to know Jesus better and better
and encouraging new people to be spending the rest of their lives too!
I don’t know if you're a betting man or not.
But you've gotta reckon that the odds are in favour of God being fair-dinkum
- of being real.
And we already know for a FACT that Jesus is a REAL bloke who lived in our world.
So the odds are that when God says we can be right with him through Jesus IT IS TRUE. It's something you can BET YOUR LIFE ON!
Be right with God for the REST of this life
and RIGHT with God when you die and stand face to face with him.
So let me urge you again - put your life in Jesus' hands. He's a safe bet!