Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. 2 Tim. 2:15

King James AV1611

Lessons For Ladies
This Series was taught by Mrs. James Modlish

Lesson Twenty

Jesus is Coming... Be Busy



I saw a bumper sticker with this saying on it, and it started a trail of thought for me that resulted in this Bible study. In our heads we know Jesus is returning, and probably soon, but do we really believe it?

A survey by Barnard Research Group in Oxnard, CA showed the Bible has been reduced to a spiritual icon of little value in the average American home. As a result, most Americans are woefully ignorant of the Book:

* 80% believe "God helps those who help themselves" is in the Bible.


* 65% see the verse John 3:16 at sporting events but have no idea it refers to eternal life.

* 50% didn't know book of Jonah is in the Bible.

* 10% think Joan of Arc is the wife of Noah.

If most people are ignorant of simple facts regarding God's Word, how many give any thought whatsoever to the return of Christ? And what should we be doing when He shows up?

There is one particular trait you need to develop to be able to stay in the battle and live a successful Christian life until the Lord returns. In (2 Tim. 4:21) Paul reminds Timothy to make every effort to come to him before winter and in (vs. 13) he listed the articles he needed, including his cloak. (Song of Sol. 2:10-13) reminds us that spiritual "winter" is about to descend on the world. You can see the clouds gathering, and you can feel the cold air of apathy and indifference settling over our society. If we need any single character trait in these last days, it's the word found in Paul's exhortation to Timothy --- diligence.

Diligence is almost an unknown quantity in today's society. Webster's 1828 Dictionary defines it as a "constant effort to accomplish what is undertaken." Today we have a wealth of excuses for abandoning jobs or shirking responsibility ...we're too busy, too tired, too old, too young ...we are burned out, had dysfunctional childhoods or are finding ourselves. Guinness Book of Records lists Roland Daab of Columbia, Ohio who as of May 23, 1976 had attended 3000 consecutive Sunday School sessions...that's diligence!

However, the real crime is that we accept these excuses for they are created in a society where no one takes personal responsibility for their own actions. We are not "programmed" by our genes or childhood to be quitters who are unable to make choices. But there is hope; the Bible addresses the subject of diligence repeatedly, and there are three areas of your life where the practice of diligence is imperative if you are going to be busy when Jesus comes. 

I. Hands - (Eccl. 9:10) admonishes us that "whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might..."

A. Diligent hands produce wealth. (Pro. 12:24; 10:4)

[1]. In spirit and attitude

[2]. In the material sense

B. Hands at home. (Prov. 31:10-12)
[1]. Maintaining your home is your responsibility.
[2]. This includes decent meals.
[3]. As a woman you are instructed by God to provide a warm home environment.
[4]. Read (Prov. 31) for the perfect "hand model."

C. Hands in the world
[1]. As a Christian testimony, diligent hands at the job can be your most effective witness. (2 Thess. 3:11-12)
[2]. God has a suggestion for "how to succeed." (Prov. 22:29) You don't have to lie awake at night in order to succeed; just stay awake during the day!

I heard about a professional beggar who was so successful at begging, he had "thank you" tattooed on his hand...not exactly the best role model, but he was resourceful!

D. Hands in the church
[1]. (Ezra 7:23) shows that a pagan king had more sense than a lot of Christians.
[2]. Everything that is done for God's work should be done diligently.

E. The result is clean hands.
[1]. Clean hands lead to continual strength. (Job 17:9)
[2]. Clean hands will help you move "upward." (Psa. 24:3-4) 

II. Thoughts -

A. In the world

[1]. As a testimony, diligently consider lest you slip into desirously coveting. (Prov. 23:1-4)

(a). There is always the temptation to envy your neighbor for her house, her figure, her clothes, her husband...monitor your thoughts.

(b). Your thought life can cause all sorts of trouble if left to its own devices.

[2]. "Haste makes waste," Grandma said. (Prov. 21:5) shows where haste leads, and where diligent thoughts end up.

B. In the family
[1]. (Prov. 27:23) Do you know the state of you flock? your teens? your husband? This doesn't mean an occasional chat -- it says be diligent to know.
[2]. (Deut. 6:4-8) You can be diligent in having your child in every extracurricular activity that's available, but if you miss the instructing of these verses, you have failed your child miserably. (Note the reference to "hand" in verse 8.)

C. In your personal life

A diligent, clean thought life leads to:
[1]. Rewards (Heb. 11:6) Remember those crowns we have been promised by God as rewards for faithfulness? Who needs the beautiful face, slim body and the banner that reads "Miss Somebody" when you can win crowns from God?!!
[2]. Spiritual life (Ex. 15:26) Following God's rules and obeying Him will keep you from the ills of the world such as AIDS, STD's, mental breakdowns, etc. 

III. Soul -

A. We are reminded in (Mk. 8:36) that our soul is our most important possession.

B. Diligence can give you a fat soul. (Prov. 13:4) I want my hips slim and my soul fat!

C. A diligent soul can improve your memory. (Deut. 4:9) Researcher Dr. George Miller discovered the average person can only remember accurately seven items on any list read to him. Are we surprised the number is seven?

A well-trained memory is one that permits you to forget everything that isn't worth remembering.

D. The diligent keeping of your soul can avoid root trouble. (Heb. 12:15) Take note ...the Bible says many will be defiled by your bitterness, not just you.

E. There is a wonderful result that comes from keeping your soul with all diligence. (2 Pet. 1:22) We will love each other ...which is sometimes nothing more than a miracle!

Don't get discouraged; don't give up. (2 Pet. 3:13-14) In peace, without spot, blameless ...that will take lots of diligence!

Jesus is coming... Be busy!


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