I had heard that on the evening of September 8, 2002, Jeff May, the preacher for the Gardendale church of Christ, was going to preach a sermon about 9/11. Rather than attending worship where I was a member, I was there to hear him. These are my notes from that sermon. Jeff started with a short story, which I am also including here.
WHERE WILL YOU BE WHEN IT REALLY DOES?
One day a man was strolling in a park near a lake, when he saw another man fall in. Being a good swimmer, his immediate response was to jump in. He was able to save the near-drowning man. Some months later, this same man who almost drowned was brought, chained, into court for killing another person. The jurist was none other than the man who had pulled him out of the lake.
After the evidence had been given and the jury had spoken, the man behind the bench announced, "As the authority in this court, I now sentence you to death in the electric chair. Do you have any questions?"
The condemned man said, "Why is it that only a few months ago, you saved me, yet today you condemn me to death?"
Said the judge, "That day, I was your savior. Today I am your judge."
9/11 happened When MANY THOUGHT It NEVER Would. We've got the greatest military in the world. It’s not going to happen. Who would have thought it could happen? And the ones involved did it quite easily. Do you realize that when Jesus comes again, it'll be just like that? Hoards of people today say, “It's not gonna happen.” They mock at those who preach His return. Peter said they would (II Peter 3:3-4). Look at His response (3:5-10). People didn’t expect the flood either (Genesis 6) - 9/11 happened when many were saying, "Naa"
9/11 showed how TRAGEDY can COME at the MOMENT when We LEAST EXPECT It! It was an ordinary day in New York City. And then ... boom!!! That's precisely how it will be when the Lord comes again (I Thessalonians 5:1-9) - Like a thief! He does not call and tell you to get ready. The events of September 11 unfolded from the sky. Jesus returns on the clouds (Acts 1:9-11; I Thessalonians 4:16) - a shout, the voice of an archangel, and the trumpet. Graves will open. The living will be changed instantly (I Corinthians 15:51-53). All are given incorruptible bodies but that's not good news for everyone, depending on where you spend eternity.
9/11 Awakened a Few to WHAT MATTERED! One problem with the world we live in is that we seldom think about what really matters. A few things will jerk us there - death, disease. September 11 did!!! Was it a wake up call from God? I don't know. He does believe in them (Amos 4:6-11). It is not beyond Him to use a wicked and evil empire to get the attention of one considered less evil (Habakkuk 1:13). I'll take what happened last September 11 as a wake-up call. What should 9/11 do for right thinking people? See II Peter 3:11-13. This is the only thing that matters.
9/11 Left Two CLASSES of PEOPLE! DEAD and ALIVE - pictures held or posted near the World Trade Center, not knowing which of those two classes their loved ones were in. When Jesus comes again, there will only be two classes. Dead and alive. He separates them (Matthew 25). Both will have an eternal existence, but do you recall anywhere that both are called “life”? One of them is called the “second death”. Do we sometimes forget this? Many people have gotten it in their minds that Jesus' return is going to be like the first time - an announcement of good news to all the world. But not so (John 12:47-48). When Jesus comes again, which of those two groups of people will you be in?
9/11 Proved that ONE RELIGION is NOT as GOOD as ANOTHER! Many Islamic followers declare that the element of Islam that brought on the events of 9/11 is a radical element and does not represent the mindset of all Muslims. Maybe so. All I know is that the mindset and the religious beliefs of the men who brought September 11 to us is not from God.
Jesus taught 3 things the men who brought on 9/11 did not believe.
1. That the way of God is not advanced by physical war (Jihad) - (John 18:36; II Corinthians 10:4; Isaiah 2:4).
2. That He is the son of God. Islam places him as nothing more than a prophet.
3. That He is the only way to God (John 14:6). The early church spoke of "the way" and it was not the way of Islam.
We live in a world of world religions and denominationalism. What's right? Jesus is exclusive and says His way is the only way that's right. One religion is not as good as another.
A. What is His way? He spoke the truth before He left for Heaven.
B. Have you come to fully believe in Him as the Son of God? Have you confessed that faith? Would you turn from all your sins in repentance and be buried with Him to have them all washed away? (Mark 16:15-16)
C. It's going to stop turning!
Where will YOU be when the world stops turning?
(Thank you for reading this. Netagene ... and since posting that, I found another tribute. It's on http://bevq.blogspot.com - scroll to September 11 of this year.)