Appointed To Die!
Appointed To Die
"It is appointed unto men once to die..." Hebrews 9:27
There are few statements in the Bible which will be as little disputed as that.
Sooner or later we will all die! As sure as we live we die.
Death takes the beautiful and the ugly, the young and the old, the famous and the infamous,
the rich and the poor, the sinner and the saint.
No one seriously doubts that in twenty-five years or so, a very large proportion of the people now living
on this earth will be dead.
Someone has caculated that if one's life could be represented by the 16 waking hours
of the day from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m., the time clock of life would look like this:
George Bernard Shaw observed: "One out of one dies."
- If you are 10, it is now 8 a.m.
- If you are 20, it is now 10 a.m.
- If you are 30, it is now 12 noon
- If you are 40, it is now 2 p.m.
- If you are 50, it is now 4 p.m.
- If you are 60, it is now 6 p.m.
- If you are 70, it is now 8 p.m.
- If you are 80, it is 10 p.m. and getting close to midnight.
Mark Twain once said, "This life is a losing proposition; nobody gets out of it alive."
We try to tiptoe around death as if ignoring it will make it go away.
On the face of it, very few people seem to be seriously perturbed by having to live under the sentence of death.
Many just put it out of their mind as something that always happens to someone else.
Others would say that it is too morbid to think of - so forget it.
And in a somewhat different vein, we are all apt to think of death as a great calamity, such as:
Life is precious! Death is the great enemy lying in wait for us.
- Few fates worse than death
- Supreme penalty is death
- Hear of deaths in accidents,floods,etc., and we cry "What a shame!"
But we will all die!
I read an article entitled:"His One Mistake"
"He brushed his teeth twice a day - with fluoride.
The doctor examined him twice a year.
He slept with plenty of fresh air.
He watched his diet and took his vitamins.
He golfed, but never more than 18 holes at a time.
He got at least 8 hours sleep every night.
He never smoked, drank, nor lost his temper.
He was set to live to be a hundred - his funeral will be held Monday.
He is survived by 18 specialists, 4 health institutions, 6 gymnasiums,
and numerous manufacturers of health foods and vitamins."
We will all die!
Shouldn't we be prepared?
Death is as close as a stray bullet, the car just across the line on the highway.
Death is as close as one malignant cell, one heartbeat, or one piece of foreign matter in the blood stream.
We may be wise enough to determine the distance of stars, but we don't know when we will die.
We do not know how many grains of sand are left in the hour-glass of time.
No one knows the exact moment of their death.
Death catches many unaware and unprepared.
Dr.Wilbur Chapman, the great evangelist of the past, was met after the worship service by one of his deacons.
- Raphael died when his last picture was about half-finished.
The picture was carried in his funeral procession as a mute reminder of the uncertainty of death.
- Charles Dickens laid down his pen for the last time in the middle of his last novel.
- Franz Schubert left an unfinished symphony.
Aware of Dr. Chapman's poor health, he said, "Pastor, I wish you could enjoy the good health that I have.
I never have an ache, never need a doctor, and I never take any medicine. I am the picture of perfect health."
Three weeks later Dr. Chapman was interrupted by the early morning ring of the telephone.
He was asked to come quickly to the home of this deacon.
Dr. Chapman was met at the door by the deacon's daughter.
"This morning," she said, "Dad asked me to meet him in the kitchen for breakfast in fifteen minutes.
I dressed and waited for him.
After a few minutes of waiting, I went to his bedroom to see what was holding him up.
He was sitting in his favorite chair with the morning paper in his lap, and his head fallen to his chest,and he was dead."
Never an ache.
Never a pain.
Never needed a doctor.
Never had the need of medicine.
He was the picture of perfect health.
Yet, in fifteen minutes he was dead!
We will all die!
Shouldn't we be prepared for that moment of death which will surely come to us all!
Suppose in your home in your food cupboard - there are bread rolls.
And you were required to eat one roll every day.
And you were told that one of those rolls had poison in it.
I believe that you would begin to eat every roll with great caution - knowing that one of them would be your death.
Now you know that you have so many days, and one of those days will have the poison of death for you!
You do not know which one! It may be tomorrow!
Since we don't know the exact day or the exact moment, shouldn't we be prepared?
What a problem to those of us who have difficulty handling the everyday problems of life,
such as family difficulties, health problems, fears, etc.
Often our faith is not equal for ordinary emergencies.
What will we do when we come to the time of our death?
For that person without Christ as his Saviour it will be a terrible calamity!
To that person without Christ as his personal Saviour his dying memories will not be precious memories.
Like a flash of lightning, memory brings for the dying sinner the panorama of his entire life.
He will remember the days of his childhood and the many urgent warnings that came to him to prepare to meet God.
He will remember the prayers of godly parents and godly people who prayed for him.
He will remember the tears and testimonies of friends.
Dark memories like vultures will begin to gather and perch above his dying bed.
Memories of profanity, disregard and desecration of holy things, lust, adultery, fornication,
sexual immorality, pride, moral cowardice, lying, cheating, stealing,
and many other black ravens of memory will stick their beaks into the conscience of the dying man.
It is a terrible calamity because he must say goodbye to all his pleasure, but not his craving.
The rich man in hell cried for a drop of water indicating that he still had his thirst, but there was no relief.
But the most terrible calamity of all is that death ends the opportunity for that soul without Christ to be saved!
For it is "appointed unto men once to die, and then the judgment." Hebrews 9:27.
Knowing that death is sure to come, and that judgment is sure to follow -- we must be prepared!
Imagine a person going into an expensive hotel and enjoying all its services
and thinking that he doesn't have to settle up with the hotel.
Then, after spending two weeks running up an enormous bill, he is asked by the hotel manager to settle his account.
He exclaims, "I never dreamed that I had to pay."
That is how many are living today.
They never think of judgment day.
They never think that God will ask them to pay for their sins.
They never think that death could come soon.
We have been warned by God's Word that we must "Prepare to meet thy God!"
"Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness
by that man whom he hath ordained..." Acts 17:31.
You and I will be judged by what we do with Jesus.
The question on that great day of judgment will be, "What did you do with Jesus?"
YOU CAN RECEIVE JESUS AS YOUR SAVIOUR NOW!
Just invite Him into your heart and life.
Pray: "Dear God, please forgive me of my sins, and come into my heart.
I trust Jesus who died for me as my personal Saviour, and I will live for Him and serve Him as my Lord.
Thank you dear God for hearing my prayer."
Anyone Who Will Pray That Simple Prayer To God Will Experience A New Life In Jesus
Sermon by Dr. Harold L. White