Farther Along

PROPOSITION: Farther along we will understand more about the 1) Mysteries of Life; 2) Uncertainties of Life; 3) Inequities of Life.

OBJECTIVE: That each hearer would be motivated to faith in God when encountering the mysteries, uncertainties, and inequities of life.

Introduction

I.                   OUR TEXT IS: 

1 John 3:1-3, “Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not. Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is. And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure.

A.     About this text:

1.      The faithful Christian wants to know about Heaven and what it will be like.

2.      There are many questions that a Christian has.

a.       What will it be like?

b.      Where will we go?

c.       What will we do?

d.      How will we exist? 

B.     In the passage just read, John frankly admits that he doesn't know what we will be like.

1.      He does, however, say that we will be like the Lord.

2.      For John this is enough.                           

C.     He’s satisfied to have these questions answered “Farther Along.”

1.      “Farther Along” is an old familiar favorite spiritual song.

2.      In our “Songs of Faith and Praise” hymn book, this song is #753.

3.      It was written in 1911 by W. B. Stevens.

4.      The words of this song are comforting and help us to go through the difficulties of life. 

D.    Let us now consider some of the thoughts based upon this song.

Discussion

I.                   MYSTERIES OF LIFE:

A.     There are certainly many mysteries in life.

Deuteronomy 29:29 "The secret things belong unto the LORD our God: but those things which are revealed belong unto us and to our children for ever, that we may do all the words of this law."

B.     We certainly have many questions that will not be answered in this life.  However, the scripture provides the answer to many of them, especially in the spiritual realm. 

2 Pet. 1:3, “According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue:”

Titus 2:11-12, “For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world;”

2 Tim. 3:16-17, “For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world;”

C.     Let us accept in faith the answers revealed in the Bible to our many questions. 

Heb. 11:1, “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”

Eph. 3:20-21, “Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, Unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen.”

D.    Farther along all of the mysteries in life will be revealed. 

II.                UNCERTAINTIES OF LIFE:

A.     There are times when there are uncertainties in life.

1.      We sometimes feel like we don't know to whom to turn to or where to go.

2.      This is because of facing the unknown and our lack of experience.

3.      If we will but place our faith in God then He will provide us the assurance through His inspired Word to persevere. 

B.     Let us now consider the uncertainties in the life of Abraham, the father of the faithful.

1.      God told Abraham that Sarah would have his son.

2.      This was beyond Abraham’s experience.

3.      He had never heard of someone Sarah’s age having a child.

Rom. 4:19-21, "And being not weak in faith, he considered not his own body now dead, when he was about an hundred years old, neither yet the deadness of Sara’s womb: He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God; And being fully persuaded that, what he had promised, he was able also to perform."

C.     God has promised to be with us even during times of uncertainties in our life. 

Matt. 6:30, “Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith?”

Matt. 8:26, “And he saith unto them, Why are ye fearful, O ye of little faith? Then he arose, and rebuked the winds and the sea; and there was a great calm.”

Matt. 14:31, “And immediately Jesus stretched forth his hand, and caught him, and said unto him, O thou of little faith, wherefore didst thou doubt?”

D.    Farther along we'll be better prepared and able to endure life's uncertainties. 

III.             INEQUITIES OF LIFE:

A.     Life also has a certain amount of inequity.

1.      There is no guarantee of justice in this life.

2.      Often criminals receive little or no punishment for their crimes.

3.      Some large companies abuse the rights of their employees.

4.      One thing is certain; justice will be served after this life.

B.     Justice and mercy is obtained by way of the cross.

Titus 2:14, "Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works."

1 Timothy 2:5-6, "For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus; Who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time."

2 Corinthians 5:21, "For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him."

Romans 3:25-26, "Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God; To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus."

C.     Without the cross there is no mercy or forgiveness.

1.      If one does not accept God's justice through the cross, then one must accept God's justice for eternity.

Romans 12:19, "Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord."

Hebrews 10:30, "For we know him that hath said, Vengeance belongeth unto me, I will recompense, saith the Lord. And again, The Lord shall judge his people."

Jude 7, "Even as Sodom and Gomorrha, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire."

D.    Farther along God will make all wrongs right some day. 

IV.              THERE ARE SOME THINGS NOT REVEALED UNTO US BY THE LORD.

Deuteronomy 29:29 "The secret things belong unto the LORD our God: but those things which are revealed belong unto us and to our children for ever, that we may do all the words of this law."

A.     No one knows when the end of time and the second coming of Christ will be

Matt. 24:35-36, “Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away.  But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only.” 

B.     The Lord has not given a complete picture of Heaven.  This is because we are not prepared to fully comprehend that eternal home.

1 John 3:1-3, “Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not. Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is. And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure.

C.     We cannot look into the future is be certain when we will depart this life. 

Heb. 9:27, “And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment:” 

Closing

Let us conclude by briefly examining the words of the song:  “Farther Along.” 

Tempted and tried we’re oft made to wonder Why it should be thus all the day long, While there are others living about us, Never molested tho in the wrong.” 

1 Cor. 10:13, “There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man:  but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.” 

Faithful till death said our loving Master, A few more days to labor and wait; Toils of the road will then seem as nothing, As we sweep thru the beautiful gate.” 

Rev. 22:14, “Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.” 

When we see Jesus coming in glory, When He comes from His home in the sky; Then we shall meet Him in that bright mansion, We’ll understand it all by and by.” 

1 Thess. 4:14-18, “For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.  For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep.  For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God:  and the dead in Christ shall rise first:  then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air:  and so shall we ever be with the Lord.  Wherefore comfort one another with these words.” 

John 14:1-3, “Let not your heart be troubled:  ye believe in God, believe also in me.  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.  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.” 

The chorus after each stanza:  “Farther along we’ll know all about it, Father along we’ll understand why; Cheer up my brother – live in the sunshine, We’ll understand it all by and by.

--Dub Mowery

Borrowed & enlarged

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