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People need hope more than ever. As followers of Jesus, we have this promise in Colossians 1:27.....Listen to Radio Podcast featured on Moody Radio April 17 2024 

Mark 201 - Watch Out

Jesus said to them: “Watch out that no one deceives you. Many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am he,’ and will deceive many.

Mark 13:5,6

When I was a kid, there was a “weird” one-hit wonder novelty record that was an instant hit. “They’re Coming to Take Me Away, Ha-Haaa![1] was written and performed by Jerry Samuels, also known as Napoleon X14.

It’s hard to believe that this was an instant hit. It rose to Number 3 in the US, selling more than a million copies in just a few short weeks. The song was a warning. Something bad was coming.

Jesus gives his disciples not just any warning, but a serious warning about what to watch out for. What to be on the lookout for. They need to be wide awake, looking for the people who are coming close. And these people do not have their best interests at heart.

The purpose of the people coming close is not to bless, not to help, not to encourage, not to support. No, their focus and purpose are to deceive. When someone tries to deceive, they want to distract you so they can redirect you off your current road.

They’re less concerned about the road you will go on. But they’re totally obsessed to get you off course. Off your current path. You could go onto another path, or you could just wander aimlessly, roaming all over the place.

These deceivers would really like driving a golf cart. Most golf courses have a cart path where you are “supposed” to drive. But almost no one does. They may start out on the cart path, but quickly drive just about anywhere they want. The cart path is thought of as a suggestion and not a rule.

That’s how the deceivers want us to see life. Life’s a “do your own thing” kind of life. Don’t stay on the path, what fun is there in that? Go anywhere you want. Who needs a road? Drive anyway, anywhere, any speed you want.

It’s not about being settled in your convictions, or changing your opinions, changing your convictions. Just the opposite. It’s a feeling of being totally unsettled. Everything is up for grabs. You can’t depend on anyone. Anything.

This is exactly where modern society and culture has brought us. Nothing is settled. Nothing is dependable. Nothing is solid. It’s like the song by Kansas[2].

I close my eyes, Only for a moment, and the moment's gone

All my dreams, Pass before my eyes, a curiosity

Same old song, Just a drop of water in an endless sea

All we do, Crumbles to the ground, though we refuse to see

Dust in the wind, All we are is dust in the wind[3].

Jesus wants you and me to be not just certain, but absolutely certain about who he is. There is to be no doubt. No question about not just who he claimed to be, but who he really is. Who he actually is.

And who he is? He’s both God the son and the son of God. Both are so important on their own. Lots of people are going to try and get us:

· Off the course – off the path of worship, praise, obedience.

· Off the path – moving away from “not my will but yours be done.”

· Off the focus – self-sacrifice for the good of others.

How much effort do you put in watching out? Watching out for the truth? Watching out for the enemy? Watching out that you don’t stray from the narrow path?

God’s plan for you is to watch out and grow up.

Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of people in their deceitful scheming.

Ephesians 4:14

If you don’t watch out, your life will be filled with being tossed here and there. Being blown all over the place. Being easy prey for deceitful, evil people.

You’ll avoid a lot of pain if you just watch out.

[1] [2] [3] Songwriter: Kerry Livgren, lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC

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