My son and I saw the Bronx Bombers (Yankees) play against the Houston Astros last night (Monday, October 16, 2017) in the third game of the American League Championship Series (ALCS) at Yankee Stadium. The Yankees are winners of twenty seven (27) world championships. Yankee Stadium is the heart and soul, and nerve center for the game of baseball. The people of the Bronx borough of New York City are hard working blue collar folks and they are patriotic. They unfurled a gigantic American flag across the entire field prior to singing the National Anthem. Chants of U.S.A. were heard throughout the stadium. The seventh inning stretch later on, produced a patriotic medley of music, including God Bless America. I was grateful to be at this playoff game with my son.
In Yankee Stadium, Monument Park is a section where the teams’ Hall Of Fame players are memorialized on large plaques: Men like Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Joe DiMaggio, Mickey Mantle, Yogi Berra, and well over thirty others. It is a great commemoration of one hundred and seventeen years of baseball.
Aaron Judge is the current superstar on this illustrious team. He is a twenty five year old rookie who has taken the city by storm, hitting fifty two home runs during the regular season, and he is a candidate for Most Valuable Player (MVP). Much more importantly, he is humble, reminiscent of the former Yankee Lou Gehrig. Both are awesome players blessed with humility. (Aaron Judge hit a three run home run in the game we saw and made a great catch in right field).
All of the above is very enjoyable in the mundane, but has no real lasting spiritual and eternal impact. I would like to translate the above words that were highlighted in red, into the spiritual: Yankee Stadium seems like heaven to a lot of folks who have a tremendous passion for the New York Yankees and baseball. But it is not eternal, it is not heaven, and it will one day pass away. The Lord’s real heaven is eternal, it will last forever, and is so wonderful that it is far beyond our comprehension.
1 Corinthians 2:9 New King James Version (NKJV)
9 But as it is written:
“Eye has not seen, nor ear heard,
Nor have entered into the heart of man
The things which God has prepared for those who love Him.”
The Hall Of Fame includes the best players who have ever graced a baseball diamond. but their deeds and exploits will one day pass from memory. It is the Hall Of Faith, Hebrews chapter 11, which contains the lives of the faithful, whose deeds have already had an eternal impact and will be remembered forever and ever. A cross section of the faithful saints are mentioned in Hebrews 11, and the chapter closes with the following profound passage, depicting the great importance of faithful people in the eyes of the Lord:
Hebrews 11:33 Who through faith subdued kingdoms, wrought righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions.
34 Quenched the violence of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, out of weakness were made strong, waxed valiant in fight, turned to flight the armies of the aliens.
35 Women received their dead raised to life again: and others were tortured, not accepting deliverance; that they might obtain a better resurrection:
36 And others had trial of cruel mockings and scourgings, yea, moreover of bonds and imprisonment:
37 They were stoned, they were sawn asunder, were tempted, were slain with the sword: they wandered about in sheepskins and goatskins; being destitute, afflicted, tormented;
38 (Of whom the world was not worthy:) they wandered in deserts, and in mountains, and in dens and caves of the earth.
39 And these all, having obtained a good report through faith, received not the promise:
40 God having provided some better thing for us, that they without us should not be made perfect.
Aaron Judge is the current star on this team. When he appears at the plate and is up to bat, the crowd cheers “All rise!” since his name is Judge. Some even wear a judges’ robe in his honor. But one day his baseball career will be over. So let us focus on the eternal Judge, the Lord Jesus Christ:
2 Corinthians 5:10 King James Version (KJV)
10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad.
Hebrews 1 English Standard Version (ESV)
The Supremacy of God’s Son
1 Long ago, at many times and in many ways, God spoke to our fathers by the prophets, 2 but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed the heir of all things, through whom also he created the world. 3 He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature, and he upholds the universe by the word of his power. After making purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, 4 having become as much superior to angels as the name he has inherited is more excellent than theirs.
5 For to which of the angels did God ever say,
“You are my Son,
today I have begotten you”?
“I will be to him a father,
and he shall be to me a son”?
6 And again, when he brings the firstborn into the world, he says,
“Let all God’s angels worship him.”
7 Of the angels he says,
“He makes his angels winds,
and his ministers a flame of fire.”
8 But of the Son he says,
“Your throne, O God, is forever and ever,
the scepter of uprightness is the scepter of your kingdom.
You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness;
therefore God, your God, has anointed you
with the oil of gladness beyond your companions.”
“You, Lord, laid the foundation of the earth in the beginning,
and the heavens are the work of your hands;
they will perish, but you remain;
they will all wear out like a garment,
like a robe you will roll them up,
like a garment they will be changed.[a]
But you are the same,
and your years will have no end.”
13 And to which of the angels has he ever said,
“Sit at my right hand
until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet”?
14 Are they not all ministering spirits sent out to serve for the sake of those who are to inherit salvation.
I enjoy baseball and the roar of the crowd. But if the world can get excited about temporal pursuits that will soon pass away, how much more passion should the Christian born from above have. When Jesus comes in judgment, “every eye shall behold Him, every tongue will confess Him as Lord, and every knee shall bow before Him.” Let us use every fiber in our being to magnify the Lord of Lords and the King of Kings, and “so much the more, as we see that day approaching.” (Hebrews 10:25b)
All Because Of Him, Pastor Steve
Pray For Revival In America!