SBS Sermon Notes

SBS     Sermon Notes     Note 06/06

Waiting for Salvation

1. Waiting

Having to wait for something you want is difficult. Indeed we may say that impatience is a normal human trait. Few people are born patient. We often scold our children for impatience; they seem to want everything now - immediately! So we keep telling them to wait. But the truth is we adults are as impatient as our children. We have to develop patience. Patience or 'long-suffering' is a fruit of the Holy Spirit. It is a gift from God.
Galatians 5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,
23: Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.

Here are a few examples of waiting:

2. Appointed Times

Even though the Almighty and His Son are waiting for the maturity of the redeemed crop, they know when that time will be. Indeed the Father has already appointed the day when He will judge the world by Jesus Christ. (Romans 2:16) So He patiently awaits His appointed time. Many texts in scripture tell of appointed times. Here are a few examples:
Numbers 9:2 Let the children of Israel also keep the passover at his appointed season.
Exodus 9:5 And the LORD appointed a set time, saying, To morrow the LORD shall do this thing in the land.
John 7:30 Then they sought to take him: but no man laid hands on him, because his hour was not yet come.
John 8:20 These words spake Jesus in the treasury, as he taught in the temple: and no man laid hands on him; for his hour was not yet come.
John 12:23 And Jesus answered them, saying, The hour is come, that the Son of man should be glorified.
Acts 17:26-31 And hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation;...
30: And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent:
31: Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead.

Daniel 8:19 And he said, Behold, I will make thee know what shall be in the last end of the indignation: for at the time appointed the end shall be.

3. Attitudes Whilst Waiting

It is important to develop a correct attitude whilst waiting. We have a choice of various reactions.

Negative Attitudes: We can complain and say God doesn't exist. Or that He is unable to do what He has promised. Or that He is too slow or doesn't care about the human race.
Positive Attitudes: Or we can wait, trusting that everything Yahweh does has a divine purpose and an appointed time. The following advice appears many times in scripture: "Wait I say on the Lord." There is also that enormously encouraging text which says:
Romans 8:28 And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.

If you keep this text in mind, you will not risk murmuring against the Almighty.

4. Examples of Waiting

Consider the experiences of these Bible characters. Notice how all of them waited for their divine appointments. They didn't impatiently accuse the LORD of neglect or a lack of love. Compare your problems with theirs and note how they reacted to the knowledge that divine actions all have their appointed times.

The Patriarch Job: He waited for healing

Job 7:1 Is there not an appointed time to man upon earth? are not his days also like the days of an hireling?
Job 14:14 If a man die, shall he live again? all the days of my appointed time will I wait, till my change come.

Abraham: He waited for a son

Genesis 18:13 And the LORD said unto Abraham, Wherefore did Sarah laugh, saying, Shall I of a surety bear a child, which am old?
14: Is any thing too hard for the LORD? At the time appointed I will return unto thee, according to the time of life, and Sarah shall have a son.

Isaac: He waited for a wife

Genesis 24:14 And let it come to pass, that the damsel to whom I shall say, Let down thy pitcher, I pray thee, that I may drink; and she shall say, Drink, and I will give thy camels drink also: let the same be she that thou hast appointed for thy servant Isaac; and thereby shall I know that thou hast shewed kindness unto my master.

David: He waited for help

Psalm 27:14 Wait on the LORD: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the LORD.
Psalm 37:7 Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for him...
Psalm 40:1 I waited patiently for the LORD; and he inclined unto me, and heard my cry.

5. Waiting For Salvation

Oh with what longing the children of faith wait for the day of salvation. Consider this heart-cry. It could well be voiced by a million burdened souls.
Psalm 53:6 Oh that the salvation of Israel were come out of Zion!...
Romans 8:17 And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.
18: For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.
19: For the earnest expectation of the creature waiteth for the manifestation of the sons of God.
20: For the creature was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of him who hath subjected the same in hope,
21: Because the creature itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God.
22: For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now.
23: And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body.

24: For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for?
25: But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it.

Daniel 8:19 And he said, Behold, I will make thee know what shall be in the last end of the indignation: for at the time appointed the end shall be.
Habakkuk 2:1 I will stand upon my watch, and set me upon the tower, and will watch to see what he will say unto me, and what I shall answer when I am reproved.
2: And the LORD answered me, and said, Write the vision, and make it plain upon tables, that he may run that readeth it.
3: For the vision is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it shall speak, and not lie: though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry.
Isaiah 25:9 And it shall be said in that day, Lo, this is our God; we have waited for him, and he will save us: this is the LORD; we have waited for him, we will be glad and rejoice in his salvation.

6. The Reward For Patience

Waiting for an appointment can be a test of faith. Sometimes Yahweh appears to keep us waiting, not with the intention of making things awkward, but for a greater glory and to strengthen our faith. Consider this experience about the resurrection of Lazarus.
John 11:6 When he had heard therefore that he was sick, he abode two days still in the same place where he was.
verse 21 Then said Martha unto Jesus, Lord, if thou hadst been here, my brother had not died.
verse 32 Then when Mary was come where Jesus was, and saw him, she fell down at his feet, saying unto him, Lord, if thou hadst been here, my brother had not died.

Jesus appeared to have wasted two days. That is what Mary and Martha thought. But in actual fact he had a very good reason for delaying his visit. Look it up in verses 15-42. Notice how the delay laid the ground for an even more magnificent result. Would Lazarus rather have been healed two days earlier, or been resurrected later? The answer is obvious. A resurrection from death is infinately more glorious than a healing. The Saviour kept them waiting for that which was better.

The Most High will always richly reward those who patiently wait for Him.
Proverbs 27:18 Whoso keepeth the fig tree shall eat the fruit thereof: so he that waiteth on his master shall be honoured.

7. Summary

You may often be called upon to wait for something you desperately want, or think you need or even deserve. You may often be tempted to think God doesn't love or care about you enough to answer your prayers. You may even at this moment be at your wits end and ready to give up the faith. Hold it! Do not despair. Wait I say on the Lord. Remember that you are a child of God, created in His image to live for eternity with Him in the new universe. That is a fact. So be patient and have faith in Yahweh. He will most certainly come to your rescue - in His time! The Almighty loves you infinitely more than any of your relatives do; and He has a plan for you in His work and in His Kingdom. Wait upon Him in prayer and faith. He will answer - in His time!

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Elder: David B Loughran
Stewarton Bible School, Stewarton, Scotland
Placed on Internet July 1996 ... Updated August 1999