When I was young I did some stupid things. I remember those cold Pennsylvanian winters when I would go outside without a coat. My mother would urge me to dress warm. But I was stubborn and thought that going out with just a T-shirt was cool. So there I stood shivering at the bus stop trying to impress someone.
If I had caught pneumonia would it have been my mom’s fault? I had plenty of warm clothes, but I was pig-headed. If I had gotten sick it would not have been because my mother didn’t love me.
Many times we say, “I don’t believe God would condemn anyone. He’s too merciful”. So we like to imagine that in that final moment, when we stand in his presence, he will wave a magic wand and make it all better.
Or we sometimes say, “Who doesn’t want to go to heaven?” Yet I look around and see many people frozen in a spiritual winter.
How many choose to hurt themselves? And how many choose to reject the healing that Jesus offers day after day, month after month, and year after year? We create a god that suits our fancy instead of accepting who He really is.
Others say, “At the time of judgment, who wouldn’t choose heaven over hell? God will give everyone that choice at the last moment”. Many will choose at that moment, just as they do now, complete condemnation.
Why wait until the last moment to choose Christ? We say, “Sure! I will accept him at the final moment”. Why do we think we will accept him then if we do not now? When I was younger I was stupid, but not ignorant. I knew the cold could make me ill, but I rejected my mom’s loving care of my own free will.
The final moment is now! We are given a chance to choose heaven every single moment of every single day of our lives. Is the destiny of your soul so unimportant that you choose to wait until the last second? Do you do this if your roof is leaking? If you do you end up with a house full of water. Do you do this with your finances? If you do you end up bankrupt. Do you behave this way if you are very ill? If you do you end up hospitalized. Do you do this if your car is rapidly approaching a brick wall? If you do you end up dead.
If you exercise prudence with these worldly things, then why not with your own soul? Wake up!
We are in the end times. Some choose not to go to heaven every day of their lives. Why do they think that in the final moment they will choose otherwise? How often do we condemn ourselves every day in the most eternal of ways? Don’t string God along anymore! Respect Him! For he is Absolute Goodness, and anything stained with evil cannot stand to be in his presence.
But God gives us a way. A perfect way. So in that last day we can stand, clean, white as a freshly driven snow. Dressed in the coat of Christ. God does not see our imperfection or our sin. He sees us washed clean with the Blood of the Lamb of God.
We run to our Father’s arms with great joy.
We do not gain the Kingdom of Heaven because we are “good people”. We don’t become true followers of Jesus Christ because we are do-gooders or because of some elevated spiritual status. The Christian faith is a faith of the broken and the weak. We are saved because we need a Savior.