Jackson urges messengers ‘to stay to the end’comment (0)
November 25, 2010
By John Evans
We can quarrel among ourselves and debate over issues, how it’s best to be done, but the bottom line is that our Lord stayed to the end, and He expects us to stay to the end, no matter how hard it is,” declared Alabama Baptist State Convention President Jimmy Jackson during his presidential address at the annual meeting.
Warning that “we are as a nation and world in a lot bigger trouble than we make out we are,” Jackson, senior pastor of Whitesburg Baptist Church, Huntsville, urged attendees to turn to the Lord.
“Only God can fix what’s wrong with us,” he said.
Drawing from the Book of Habakkuk, Jackson examined the deteriorating state of ancient Judah: Spiritual corruption was spreading through the land as the Babylonians threatened to conquer the nation. He compared the dire times Habakkuk experienced to the current spiritual and economic distress in the world.
“It’s dark today in the lives of many Alabama Baptists, and there are people and pastors of churches wondering what they’re going to do if things go the way they seem to be going,” Jackson said.
He challenged attendees to think about what would happen if their retirement savings dried up, their bank accounts ran out and they could no longer find gas for their cars.
“There are times when what goes on around us and in our lives is so painful that it isolates us, there’s no one else we can turn to and the insides are sucked out of us.
“There will come a time in your life when nothing matters except Jesus,” Jacksonsaid.
Those times of trouble and loss, when everything else is stripped away, can serve as a powerful means of reminding believers that Jesus is all they ever needed in the first place, he said.
“As we grow in the grace of God, the adversities of life tend to press the world out of us, leaving more room for Jesus in us.
“What have you really lost if you lose the world but gain Jesus?” Jackson asked. “In the long run, Jesus is all we really had.”
When adversity comes, he said, it can lead to some of the best years of ministry yet, since it drives believers to total dependence on God. Jackson encouraged attendees to live by faith in Christ and lean on God’s promise that He will never leave them.
“If we trust in Jesus Christ, when time comes to an end, when there’s trauma, difficulty or the world collapses, ‘the just shall live by faith.’ We shall live and keep on living.”