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Dr. Walter D. Huyck Jr. D.Min.

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Hold The Fort

1 Cor 16.13-14

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[As we draw near to our upcoming revival we must ask ourselves, why even hold a revival?  What is a revival all about?  What do we hope to accomplish in this revival?] 

[Actually a revival is nothing more than a special series of worship services with a specific goal in mind.  I think true revival results when the people are so convicted that they make real and heartfelt decisions that glorify God.  For the born again Christian revival will lead to the confession of sin, the transformation of true repentance which is evidenced by real change in ones life, and a deepening commitment that leads to sacrifice and sacrificial service.  For lost souls revival will lead to the new birth and a real commitment to seek to know the Lord Jesus Christ and to live in ways that honor His sacrifices.] 

[One thing is certain in our day, things are getting worse in our culture and our world.  Our communications technologies have made life better in some respects, but they have made life far more corrupt in other respects.  Life is better due to the advances in medical research and science research that have resulted through better access to information.  Life is worse because the immoral and sinful aspects of life in our world are now accessible without leaving the privacy of ones home.  For instance, pornography can be viewed without the public humiliation of going to a store to buy a magazine or having to park in a parking lot and enter the adult entertainment establishment.  People can be immoral and no one else will ever really know that they are.]   

[Perhaps this is what the Bible implies when it says,] 

[2 Timothy 2:3-4 3 Thou therefore endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. 4 No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier.]

[We sang the old hymn this morning Hold The Fort.  For many of you this may have been the first time you have ever heard that song.  But oh the truth in that old hymn.  My Christian friends we must Hold The Fort of our Lord as those Texans sought to hold the Alamo years ago in American history.] 

[Paul told Timothy,] 

[2 Timothy 4:2-5 2 Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine. 3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; 4 And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables. 5 But watch thou in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, make full proof of thy ministry.]

[My friends we live in a day and age where the Word of God is quickly being lost in the confusion and wicked desires of a culture gone wrong.  Wrong is being called Right, the wicked are being exalted and the righteous are being slandered.  So much so that even those who truly love the Lord are afraid to Stand up, Stand up for Jesus.  But stand up we must for we must Hold The Fort.  We need men and woman of faith and virtue, but we need them to be men and women of Christian courage and Christian valor.] 

[Consider this one verse that the apostle Paul wrote,] 

[1 Corinthians 16:13 13 Watch ye, stand fast in the faith, quit you like men, be strong.]

Paul calls Christians to,  

A.     Be Vigilant (vs 13; Matt 24.42-44; 25.13; Mark 13.33, 35-37) [– Watch ye . . . – Often in the New Testament Christians are called to watch.  The hymn Hold the Fort sings,] 

[“Hold the fort for I am coming Jesus signals still . . .”] 

[Our Lord said,] 

[Matthew 24:42-44 42 Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come. 43 But know this, that if the goodman of the house had known in what watch the thief would come, he would have watched, and would not have suffered his house to be broken up. 44 Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.]

[Christians must watch with vigilance, with purposeful resolve, with determination, and impudence for we know our Lord is coming, we just don’t know when He will arrive.] 

[Again our Lord said,] 

[Matthew 25:13 13 Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh.]

[Mark’s gospel reads,] 

[Mark 13:33,35-37 33 Take ye heed, watch and pray: for ye know not when the time is. . . ..35 Watch ye therefore: for ye know not when the master of the house cometh, at even, or at midnight, or at the cockcrowing, or in the morning: 36 Lest coming suddenly he find you sleeping. 37 And what I say unto you I say unto all, Watch.]

[Are you being vigilant my dear brother in Christ or have you fallen spiritually asleep?  Do you understand that those who are asleep cannot Hold The Fort?  Are you watching for the soon coming of the Lord?] 

[Now Mark you, when our Lord says watch he does not mean just stand there gazing up into the air.  Do you remember what happened on the day of our Lord’s ascension?  There were many present on the Mount of Olives that day.  When suddenly a cloud came down, our Lord stepped unto it and up into the air He was taken until he disappeared from their sight.  The text reads,] 

[Acts 1:9-11 9 And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight. 10 And while they looked stedfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel; 11 Which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.]

[As our Lord ascended they were staring into heaven, then an angel said, in essence, “Okay Christians He is gone, He is out of your sight, why are you gazing at nothing. Its time to get to work.”  I wonder how many Christians are gazing into heaven, looking at nothing but sky, rather than Watching the matters of our faith.] 

[My friends, we need to be Watching vigilantly for lost souls to win to Christ.  We need to be Watching vigilantly for new Christian’s to disciple and strengthen in Christ.  We need to be Watching vigilantly for deceivers and false doctrines that would allure the people of our Lord away from the Word of God.  We need to be watching in vigilance so that we will not be found sleeping when our Lord arrives.] 

B.     Be Vehement (vs 16; Rev 3.14-20; Matt 18.20) [-  . . .stand fast in the faith . . . – To be vehement is to be marked by forceful energy. It is to be zealous or boiling hot for our Lord.  The Bible warns us that we, in these last days, are living in the Laodicean Church Age.  Let us consider what will mark this apostate Church.] 

[Revelation 3:14-16 14 And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God; 15 I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot. 16 So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth.]

[The first thing we notice about this Church and its people is that they are lukewarm.  The are not altogether cold but they aren’t hot either.  They are just comfortable.  The problem is that this picture paints them as tepid water.  Now who wants to drink something that is just tepid?  When you drink something you normally want it either hot or cold.  Hence, our Lord says he will vomit them out of His mouth.] 

[Notice what made these people lukewarm,] 

[Revelation 3:17-18 17 Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked: 18 I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see.]

[Their prosperity, their treasures, their riches, their luxuries, their stuff has made them spiritually lukewarm.  They don’t really need God because they can just take care of themselves and people when you no longer really need God then why be vehement in your faith.] 

[Next we discover the real condition of this Church,] 

[Revelation 3:19-20 19 As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent. 20 Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.]

[Their real problem is that Jesus is standing on the outside of this Church trying to get in.  By the way, how many Christians gathered together does it take for Jesus to be in their midst?] 

[Matthew 18:20 20 For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.]

[Now think for just a moment.  If there were only two born again Christians inside of that churches worship service, where would Jesus be?  That’s right, He would be inside with them.  This, my friends is a lukewarm Church, because they are an unredeemed Church.] 

[Listen folks, we need to ask ourselves whether we are tepid or vigilant.  Listen to these statements and tell me what they sat to you,] 

        [I want to go to Church every time there is Church.  If the Pastor is there, I will be there.  Is this vigilant or tepid?] 

        [I don’t need to go to Church all the time, Sunday morning worship is enough.  Is this tepid or vigilant?] 

        [I love and hunger for the Word of God, I would rather read, study, and memorize my Bible than watch TV.  Is this vigilant or tepid?] 

        [I don’t want to read the Bible all the time, I haven’t memorized a Bible verse in months, Sunday morning worship is enough Bible for me.  Is this vigilant or tepid?] 

        [I can’t sleep at night if I haven’t honored God with my tithes and offerings.  I give 10% of my gross in my tithes regularly.  Is this vigilant or tepid?] 

        [I can’t afford to give 10% of my income in a tithe, I will give $5.00 a week to God and that will have to do.  Is this vigilant or tepid?] 

[Listen to our text, we are called to Stand Fast in the Faith.  This is to be vigilant, to be courageous, to be marked by forceful energy.  It is to be zealous for our Lord and the things of God.] 

C.     Be Valiant (vs 16; 2 Tim 2.3-4; Mark 8.34-38) [- . . . quit you like men . . . – This is to be sacrificial if necessary.  It is to show courage in the face of opposition.  What does the phrase quit you like men mean?  It is a military phrase normally used when men are faced with vicious and overwhelming odds in battle.  Their captains or leaders would call them to be valiant by loudly declaring “Quit you like men.”  In other words, when the battle is over let all the world remember you for the way you valiantly fought in this battle.] 

[I remind you again of Paul’s words to Timothy, when he said,]  

[2 Timothy 2:3-4 3 Thou therefore endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. 4 No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier. ]

[The New Testament often speaks of our Christian struggle in the terms of battle.  My friends we are in a spiritual battle.  Sacrifices must be made in this warfare.  Our Lord set the example of the level of sacrifice that is likely to be required.  Our Lord called us to be valiantly Christian when He said,] 

[Mark 8:34-38 34 And when he had called the people unto him with his disciples also, he said unto them, Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. 35 For whosoever will save his life shall lose it; but whosoever shall lose his life for my sake and the gospel's, the same shall save it. 36 For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? 37 Or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul? 38 Whosoever therefore shall be ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation; of him also shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he cometh in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.]

[My Christian friends we must be valiantly Christian in this world and culture.  We must be willing to live sacrificial lives in the midst of this battle.] 

D.    Be Victorious (vs 16; 1 John 4.4; ) [- . . . be strong. – To be strong is to be victorious.  Why and how?  Because our Lord tells us,] 

[1 John 4:4 4 Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.]

[Our Lord also declares,]

[1 Corinthians 15:57 57 But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.]

[We have strength because our Lord Jesus Christ is in us, and it is this same Lord in whom we find our Victory.  My friends the strength we are given in our Lord Jesus Christ will also give us our greatest victories.]

[So, again I ask you my friend, are you Holding The Fort for Jesus?  Are you spiritually awake, watching for the soon appearing of our precious Savior?  Or have you fallen asleep so that you cannot stand?] 

[You are Holding The Fort for Jesus if the things that matter to our Lord matter to you.  What matters to our Lord?]

  • [The Church matters to our Lord.  Are you present in the Church when our Lord is present in Church?  When is our Lord present?  When two or three are gathered.  That is every time we have Church.]
  • [The Word of God matters to our Lord.  Do you have your daily God and I Time?  Do you memorize verses of the Bible?  Is the Word of God meat and milk to your spirit?]
  • [The Lost matter to our Lord.  Jesus left His throne in heaven and sacrificed Himself for people who didn’t even like Him.  When was the last time you shared the gospel with a lost soul?  When was the last time you gave away a tract?  When was the last time you prayed for the lost people you know?]
  • [Our Christian culture matters to our Lord.  Will you stand up for Jesus in the daily course of your life?  In the way you vote?  In the things you choose to do?  In the way you talk to people who are around you?]

[My friend, are you Holding the Fort for Jesus?  Our revival starts next Sunday, I hope we will see you Sunday through Wednesday as we meet with our Lord and hear His Word preached.  Will you be there?] 



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