Today: Make It Count

July 19th, 2020

Minoh International Church
Pastor Joseph Ricohermoso
Romans 13:11~14
ローマ人への手紙 13:11-14 JLB

11 And do this, understanding the present time: The hour has already come for you to wake up from your slumber, because our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed. 12 The night is nearly over; the day is almost here. So let us put aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light. 13 Let us behave decently, as in the daytime, not in carousing and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and debauchery, not in dissension and jealousy. 14 Rather, clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the flesh.

Romans 13:11~14

11 正しい生活をしなければならない、もう一つの理由があります。それは、今や終末に近づいており、時はどんどん過ぎているからです。目を覚ましなさい。初めに信じたころより、今はいっそう主の来られる時が近いのです。 12-13 夜はふけ、昼がすぐそこまで近づいています。ですから、暗闇に属する悪い行いを捨てて、昼間にふさわしく生きるため、正しい生活という武具で身を固めなさい。あなたがたの行為は正しいとだれからも認められるよう、何をするにも、りっぱに、誠実にふるまいなさい。遊び騒いだり、酔っぱらったり、性的な欲望のとりこになったり、争ったり、ねたんだりして時間を浪費してはなりません。 14 当然なすべき正しい生活ができるように、主イエス・キリストに助けを求めなさい。悪を楽しむような計画を立ててはいけません。

ローマ人への手紙 13:11-14


Margaret Storm Jameson, the English author, once expressed the view that we all spend too much time living in the past, feeling regret for lost joys or shame for things badly done. Even when our minds turn to the future, she said, we spend an inordinate amount of time longing for it or dreading it.

“The only way to live,” she said, “is to accept each minute as an unrepeatable miracle . . . Work at your work. Play at your play. Shed your tears. Enjoy your laughter. Now is the time of your life.”

Be present. That’s what Jameson is saying. The apostle Paul has a similar line of thinking when it comes to our daily life. In fact, Paul’s exhortation can be summarized in three (3) action words: awaken, abandon and adorn.

  1. Awaken

The hour has already come for you to wake up from your slumber (v.11)

A sleeping person has no awareness of what’s going on around him. We cannot expect him to answer questions sensibly, follow instructions carefully, or do the activities of one who is alert.

I admit, somehow the state of emergency and the so-called “new normal” made me feel as if life is in a standstill.

But, we are told to wake up! The night is almost gone. Now is the time to get up and act! This day matters.

During his 1960 presidential campaign, John F. Kennedy often closed his speeches with the story of Colonel Davenport, the Speaker of the Connecticut House of Representatives. 

One day in 1789, the sky of Hartford darkened ominously, and some of the representatives, glancing out the windows, feared the end was at hand. Quelling a clamor for immediate adjournment, Davenport rose and said, “The Day of Judgment is either approaching or it is not. If it is not, there is no cause for adjournment. If it is, I choose to be found doing my duty. Therefore, I wish that candles be brought.” 

“Our salvation” is nearer now in the sense that Christ’s coming for the church is nearer today than ever before. By “salvation” Paul means the total blessing that we will have when Christ comes—including new bodies and a new home.

Rather than fearing what is to come, we are to be faithful till Christ returns. Instead of fearing the dark, we’re to be lights as we watch and wait. 

  1. Abandon

“So let us put aside the deeds of darkness” (v.12)
ですから、暗闇に属する悪い行いを捨てて (12節)

He tells us to put aside the undisciplined patterns of the flesh. He makes it abundantly clear that we must abandon sinful activities, behaviors and associations.

Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.

Hebrews 12:1


へブル人への手紙 12:1

Christians belong to the light, not the dark. We should be awake and alert, behaving as those who have seen the light of the Gospel (2 Corinthians 4). Moreover, no believer wants to be found in sin when Christ returns! “The day is almost here!”

not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.

Hebrews 10:25

25 集会から離れたりする人たちにならってはいけません。主が再びおいでになる日は、もう間近なのですから、互いに励まし合っていきましょう。

へブル人への手紙 10:25

  1. Adorn

“Put on the armor of light” (v.12) and to “clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ” (v.14).
光の鎧を着て(12節) イエスキリストで身を守りなさい(14節)

The apostle Paul tells us to “put on” Christ. We know that His Spirit dwells in us and now we must adorn ourselves with Him. That is, to be more and more like Christ.

Verse 14 informs us of the believer’s dual responsibility: positively, to “clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ” — that is, make Christ Lord of our daily life; negatively, to “do not think about how to gratify the desires of the flesh” — that is, deliberately avoid that which tempts us to sin.

Paul mentions a number of sins in verse 13, sins that ought never to be seen among the believers.

13 Let us behave decently, as in the daytime, not in carousing and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and debauchery, not in dissension and jealousy.

Note that drinking and immorality often go together and result in conflict and division. How many homes have been broken up over drink!

The lifestyle of the rich and famous in Hollywood tend to set the standard for this kind of behavior.

Take for example, a news of not so long ago concerning Justin Timberlake (who’s married), “feeling guilty” after being photographed holding hands and getting his knee stroked by co-star Alisha Wainwright at a bar in New Orleans.

The compromising situation was described in this way: “He had too much to drink and got carried away,” a source told E! News about the 39-year-old pop singer’s interactions with Wainwright.

It is wrong for anyone and specially for a believer to “plan for sin.”

It can be said that when King David left the battlefield and returned to Jerusalem, “he was making arrangements to sin.” It was when he committed adultery with Bathsheba and eventually plotted the death of Bathsheba’s husband, Uriah (2 Samuel 11).
ダビデ王が戦場からエルサレムへ帰還した時、「彼は罪を犯す準備をした」と言う事もできます。これは、バテ・シェバと浮気し、彼女の夫であるウリヤを戦場で殺す計画を企てた時でした。(サムエル記Ⅱ 11章)

In the light of the soon-coming Christ, it is our responsibility to live sober, spiritual, clean lives.


I hope these biblical examples will help us understand how important it is to “understand the present time.” To make it count because this day is a gift and it matters.

Joshua 24:14~15 – Joshua
Joshua’s final speech was a challenge to make the opportune time matter. He challenged his fellow Israelites: “Choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve … But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord.” Making today count is a daily choice.
ヨシュア記 24:14-15 Japanese Living Bible (JLB)
14 まさに、おことばのとおりだ。だから主を恐れかしこみ、誠心誠意、お仕えしようではないか。ユーフラテス川の向こうやエジプトで、先祖が拝んでいたような偶像とはきっぱり縁を切りなさい。ただ主に仕え、主を礼拝しなさい。 15 もし主に従いたくなければ、たった今、だれに従うかを決めなさい。ユーフラテス川の向こうで先祖が拝んでいた神々であろうが、この地に住むエモリ人の神々であろうが、好きに選ぶがいい。しかし、私と私の家族とは、あくまでも主に仕える。」

Esther 4:13~14 – Esther
Esther preferred to stay safe and do nothing, but her adoptive father Mordecai wouldn’t let her. The fate of God’s people hung in the balance. A genocide is being planned against them. Mordecai stunned her when he said, “Who knows but that you have come to your royal position for such a time as this?” He pushed Esther to seize the day, and she did.
エステル 記 4:13-14 Japanese Living Bible (JLB)
13 しかし、モルデカイの答えはきびしいものでした。「ユダヤ人が全員殺されるというのに、王宮にいるからといって、おまえだけが助かるとでも思うのか。 14 もしも、この事態をおまえがそしらぬ顔で見ているなら、神様は別の人を用いてユダヤ人をお救いになるだろう。だが、おまえとおまえの一族は必ず滅びることになるのだ。神様がおまえを王妃となさったのは、もしかすると、この時のためかもしれない。」

Psalm 118:24 – King David
David learned his lesson. He repented of his sins. Here he sings, “The Lord has done it this very day; let us rejoice today and be glad.” Later he wrote: “Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts.” David was very aware of the significance of today. He worked to see that each day counted and he helped others do the same.
詩篇 118:24 Japanese Living Bible (JLB)
24 今日こそ、主がお造りになった日です。さあ、この日をぞんぶんに楽しみましょう。

Ecclesiastes 3:1~14 – King Solomon
Solomon wrote that God has made everything appropriate in its time. There is a time for everything under the sun. He realized in the end of the book of Ecclesiastes that we must make the most of each day in the sight of God.
伝道者の書 3:1~14 Japanese Living Bible (JLB)

Matthew 6:34 – Our Lord Jesus
Finally, our Savior and Lord, Jesus Christ, would tell us: Today matters. In the Sermon on the Mount, He tells us to seek first His kingdom, and all the other needs we have will be added to us. Following that challenge, He reminds us not to worry about tomorrow — each day has enough trouble of its own. Just focus on today.
マタイの福音書 6:34 Japanese Living Bible (JLB)
34 明日のことを心配するのはやめなさい。神は明日のことも心にかけてくださるのですから、一日一日を力いっぱい生きなさい。

I would like to leave with you this morning the prayer of Moses as recorded in Psalm 90:12. Let his prayer be our prayer too: “Teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.”
詩篇 90:12 Japanese Living Bible (JLB)
12 どうか、私たちに与えられた日の数え方を教え、それがどんなに短いものか気づかせてください。どうか、正しい日の過ごし方を教えてください。

We don’t know what tomorrow will bring so choose to not waste a moment today.