There are a whole lot of voices in the world today saying this or that, and depending which one we listen to and obey, will determine where we will spend eternity.  We all know the voice of the world; saying “do it your way, you deserve to do whatever you want to”.  What most people DON’T realize is that the voice of the world is the voice of the devil, only he doesn’t want you to think it is him trying to urge you to your destruction, because he wants to stay hidden from view.  He hates God, and he hates God’s children, and though he can’t hurt God in the least, he targets God’s children with waste, ruin and destruction by any means possible.
   It is very difficult to fight and overcome an enemy that you cannot locate, and that is one reason the devil is so effective in his work against God’s people.  Oh, but you can sure tell when he’s been there, because he leaves ruin in his path.  He works around the clock to steal, kill and destroy, and if you are alive and have anything, he is your personal enemy.  His methods are varied, and he works to stay hidden.  Those thoughts of evil that come into your mind from time to time aren’t yours, they’re from the devil, but he wants you to think they’re yours so he can also heap guilt and condemnation upon you.  He teaches people to lie, steal, kill, hate and to disobey God.  And he does it by appealing to people’s pride: Hey, you deserve what you want.  And that leads to people being selfish, insisting on their own way, living in disregard to God and their fellow man.  From that arise strife, jealousy and wars, and very other evil thing.
We read in Mark 1:1-8 about John the Baptist, who was the forerunner to Christ Jesus, saying:
Mar 1:1  The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God;
Mar 1:2  As it is written in the prophets, Behold, I send my messenger before thy face, which shall prepare thy way before thee.
Mar 1:3  The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.
Mar 1:4  John did baptize in the wilderness, and preach the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins.
Mar 1:5  And there went out unto him all the land of Judaea, and they of Jerusalem, and were all baptized of him in the river of Jordan, confessing their sins.
Mar 1:6  And John was clothed with camel’s hair, and with a girdle of a skin about his loins; and he did eat locusts and wild honey;
Mar 1:7  And preached, saying, There cometh one mightier than I after me, the latchet of whose shoes I am not worthy to stoop down and unloose.
Mar 1:8  I indeed have baptized you with water: but he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost.
   We see here that John was commissioned by God to usher in change, urging men to forsake their sins and turn to God, and his message was easily understood and to the point, like mine.  Enough destruction has come to pass by the failure of mankind to seek and obey God, and the need and the message today is just as urgent as back then: how long will we continue to live in disregard to God’s laws and expect to be blessed for it?  How long will we tolerate the devil leading us into compromise with God’s Word, resulting in our destruction?
   John the Baptist said it 2000 years ago, and I’m proclaiming it today.  Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.  Don’t think things can keep going on like this forever, especially considering Christ Jesus has already been to the cross to pay for your sins.  You have absolutely no excuse for ignoring His sacrifice.  That sacrifice was made for the purpose of ransoming you from a life of waste, ruin and destruction, in order to bring you into a relationship with Christ Jesus, and a life of blessing.
   Sadly, too many preachers today are playing “compromise” with God’s Word.  God says to REPENT, turn from sin and FORSAKE it.  In other words, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.  But the Gospel of Jesus Christ has been turned into what I call the Gospel of You Can Have It Your Way, and churches are becoming afraid to preach the true Gospel, becoming “seeker friendly churches”.  I spell that the “Church of Compromise”.  John the Baptist came clothed with camel hair, eating locusts and honey.  Today’s preachers come in their jets, wearing their Armani suits eating steak and caviar, saying God wants to make you rich and give you everything your little heart desires, because it’s all about YOU and what YOU want, and repentance from sin is seldom preached.
   Nobody wants to be told to straighten up their life and get right with God.  Nobody wants to be told to quit cheating on their taxes, or to stop speeding when they’re driving down the road, or to quit “borrowing” stuff from work to take home, or to quit cheating on their spouse, or to put a stop to addictions and abominable behavior.  It isn’t a popular message, and it certainly doesn’t make for a prosperous bank account for any church or minister preaching repentance from sin.
   John preached that he was not worthy to even untie the shoes of Jesus, humbling himself before men and God.  Today’s preachers tend to want to exalt themselves, make a name for themselves, and be popular.  John didn’t care about “popular”.  He cared about lives being turned to God.  I can’t see where John even got a salary for his labors.  That’s not to say a preacher isn’t worthy of his hire, because he is.  But what about these preachers getting million dollar salaries, who are they really serving, themselves, or God?  Think about it….
   Now, it isn’t all about preachers, although they tend to preach what is “popular”, because it brings in better offerings.  Personally, I don’t care whether you ever give me a dime or not, I’m going to preach what God told me to preach and let the chips fall where they will.  I’m not on anyone’s payroll.  I care about your soul, and where you will spend eternity!  And if you end up hearing Jesus tell you DEPART FROM ME, I NEVER KNEW YOU, it won’t be the preacher’s fault, it will ultimately be yours, for refusing to repent of your sins and get right with God.  The Gospel of Jesus Christ has been preached pretty much all over the world, so nobody will be able to say, I didn’t know. 
   John the Baptist gave stern and urgent warning that Jesus was coming quickly, and He did.  And I’m telling you, get ready, for He is coming back again SOON, and when He gets here, you won’t have time to get ready.  You’d better be, as I often say, like lunchmeat, always ready.  Then when He comes, you’ll hear Him say Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.
   You can hear Well done, or you can be well done.  YOUR CHOICE. Thank you for listening to this public service announcement from my Sponsor, Christ Jesus of Nazareth.  Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.