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« Questions for the Judgment | Main | Fabulous Faith »

A Place for You

lonely.jpg1 Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. 2 In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. 3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also. 4 And whither I go ye know, and the way ye know. John 14:1-4

(Read hurricane plan from the State of Florida.  Reference cited at end of this article.)

We all have a place in life. Hispanic, African-American, Caucasian. Rebel, Yankee, Buckeye, Toledoan. Student, Employee, Boss, Home-owner, Renter, Shopper, Consumer. Single, Married, Divorced, Conservative, Liberal, Democrat, Republican. Believer, Agnostic, Atheist.

The labels we wear tell who we are, they define our identity, they represent a place for us.  All of us here are members of some sort of family. Dads, moms, sons, daughters, aunts, uncles, cousins, grandmas, grandpas…somewhere you fit in.  You live somewhere…an address, a street number, maybe an apartment number.  When you get off work, or out of school…you have a place to go.  It’s nice to visit other people, but there comes a time when you gotta get home.  If you go on vacation, or on a business trip, after a few days, you start itching to go home.  Why? No reason in particular. It just feels good to get home.

There’s no place like home for the holidays…
Home sweet home…
Home is where the heart is…
A man’s home is his castle…

But, beyond home, something else is important in life. It’s called the need to belong. It hurts when you can’t belong. Like being left standing after the last player is picked for the team. Like not getting picked for the last part in the play. Like not getting invited to the party that everyone else is going to.  You know what hurts even more? When you feel rejection from the people who are supposed to love you. When your safe and secure home falls apart. When you’ve done your best for God and you feel he leaves you hanging.

Let me set this text up for you quickly. Jesus came into this world and started a ministry that changed everything. His disciples were Jewish peasants who had left everything to follow the Master. Peter, James and John left their fishing nets; Matthew left his tax tables; they all left their families. In a sense, they were in no-man’s-land. Economically, socially and religiously, they had forfeited their place in life. Jesus understood that they were a little concerned about the things they had given up. That’s why he said, “Let not your hearts be troubled.” “I know you think you are out here, lost, scared, insecure…” But, believe me, there’s a place for you.”

Three questions:

  1. Is there a place for you in the hereafter?
  2. Is there a place for you in the here and now?
  3. What do you have to do to reserve that place?

Yes, there is a place for you in the hereafter.

It is called heaven.
Some call it paradise; the New Jerusalem; the city where the lamb is the light.

There’s a man called Enoch there; and a prophet named Elijah; and a beggar named Lazareth.

Rev 21:1-4 And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea. 2 And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. 3 And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God.  4 And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.

Rev 21:10-14 And he carried me away in the spirit to a great and high mountain, and shewed me that great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God, 11 Having the glory of God: and her light was like unto a stone most precious, even like a jasper stone, clear as crystal;
12 And had a wall great and high, and had twelve gates, and at the gates twelve angels, and names written thereon, which are the names of the twelve tribes of the children of Israel: 13 On the east three gates; on the north three gates; on the south three gates; and on the west three gates. 14 And the wall of the city had twelve foundations, and in them the names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb.



Heavens and earth, 1:1

New heavens and earth, 21:1

The sun created, 1:16

The sun not needed, 21:23

The night designated, 1:5

No night there, 22:5

Rivers on earth, 2:10-14

A river in heaven, 22:1-2

No access to tree of life, 3:24

Access to tree of life, 22:14

A curse, 3:14-17

No more curse, 22:3

Death, 3:19

No more death, 21:4

Sorrow, 3:17

No more sorrow, 21:4

Marriage of Adam, 2:8-23

Marriage of the Lamb, 19:1-8

The serpent deceives, 3:1ff

The serpent judged, 2

There is an old hymn, When We All Get to Heaven

Sing the wondrous love of Jesus,
Sing His mercy and His grace.
In the mansions bright and blessèd
He’ll prepare for us a place.

When we all get to Heaven,
What a day of rejoicing that will be!
When we all see Jesus,
We’ll sing and shout the victory!

While we walk the pilgrim pathway,
Clouds will overspread the sky;
But when traveling days are over,
Not a shadow, not a sigh.

Let us then be true and faithful,
Trusting, serving every day;
Just one glimpse of Him in glory
Will the toils of life repay.

Onward to the prize before us!
Soon His beauty we’ll behold;
Soon the pearly gates will open;
We shall tread the streets of gold.

But the question that weighs heavier on us to day is the second one.

Is there a place for you in the here and now?

Jesus said, Upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. Jesus is still building his church. I want to remind you today, or say to those who never heard that it is the church of Jesus. It’s not an exclusive club; it’s not an elitist’s circle; it’s not formal or contemporary. It’s not a white man’s invention; not a ghetto church; not an uptown or country thing. It is love sought, blood bought, Spirit-filled, truth-preaching and sinner reaching. It was conceived in the mind of God; paid for by the blood of Jesus, built by the Holy Spirit and cherished by the holy saints. It is a “whosoever will” church. Every believer has a place in the church.

There is a place in the church for children.

Matt 19:14-15 But Jesus said, Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven. 15 And he laid his hands on them, and departed thence.

There is a place for girls and young women.

Acts 2:18 And on my servants and on my handmaidens I will pour out in those days of my Spirit; and they shall prophesy:

There is a place for boys and young men.

1 John 2:14 I have written unto you, young men, because ye are strong, and the word of God abideth in you, and ye have overcome the wicked one.

There is a place for older women.

Acts 17:12 Therefore many of them believed; also of honourable women which were Greeks, and of men, not a few.

There is a place for men.

2 Tim 2:2 And the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also.

There is a place for women who have had troubled relationships.

John 4:17-18 The woman answered and said, I have no husband. Jesus said unto her, Thou hast well said, I have no husband: 18 For thou hast had five husbands; and he whom thou now hast is not thy husband: in that saidst thou truly.

John 4:39 And many of the Samaritans of that city believed on him for the saying of the woman, which testified, He told me all that ever I did.

There is a place for thieves.

Luke 23:42-43 And he said unto Jesus, Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom. 43 And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise.

And there’s more. There’s a place for the leper, the halt, maimed, blind, deaf. For the demoniacs, the downtrodden, the weak, the weary, the hungry, the thirsty. For widows and widowers; the depressed and sick; the poor and destitute.

Isaiah 55:1 Ho, every one that thirsteth, come ye to the waters, and he that hath no money; come ye, buy, and eat; yea, come, buy wine and milk without money and without price.

There is a place for people who have totally messed up their lives.

1 Cor 6:9-11 Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, 10 Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God. 11 And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.

There is a place for you in the prayer room; at the altar bench; in the worship service.
There is a place for you in the healing lines; in the miracle blessings; at the disciples’ table.
This is brought to you by the words of Jesus: I go to prepare a place for you.

Where did he go?
He went to wash away our sins.
He went to sanctify us by his blood.
He went to justify us by his baptism of fire.
He sweat as it were great drops of blood in the garden of Gethsemane.
He was scourged in Pilate’s judgment hall; slogged up Calvary’s hill bearing an old, splintered cross; crucified by three nails; driven through by a soldier’s spear; and died between two thieves.

What is he doing? Ask him. Washing. Sanctifying. Justifying.
“Preparing a place for you.”
Here’s the thing…We had no place! None of us has an inherent right to be here.

Eph 2:11-22 Therefore, remember that formerly you who are Gentiles by birth…12 remember that at that time you were separate from Christ, excluded from citizenship in Israel and foreigners to the covenants of the promise, without hope and without God in the world. 13 But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near through the blood of Christ.

19 Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and aliens, but fellow citizens with God’s people and members of God’s household, 20 built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone. 21 In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. 22 And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit.


The last question is: What do you have to do to reserve this place prepared for you?

This is a family. In order to get into a family, you have to be born into it.

3 Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. 4 Nicodemus saith unto him, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother’s womb, and be born? 5 Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. 6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. 7 Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again. John 3:3-7

Repent. Be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ. Receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.

When you come in and find your place, here’s what you’ll have.

  • A new name.
  • A new garment.
  • A new inheritance.
  • A new mind.
  • A new heart.
  • Authority and power over the enemy.
  • Your name written down in the Lamb’s book of life.
  • A new hope for today and tomorrow.

There is a place for you at the marriage supper of the Lamb.
There is a crown for you at the judgment seat of Christ.
There is a palm for you to wave in the New Jerusalem.
And today, there is a place for you at the feet of Jesus.

Rev 22:16-17 I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches. I am the root and the offspring of David, and the bright and morning star. 17 And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.

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