Oh, how many there are who trust in their own good works and therefore cannot come to Christ! “I will not be saved,” they say, “in the same way as a prostitute or the profane. What? Go to heaven in the same way as a chimney sweep? Is there no pathway to glory but the one that led the thief there? I will not be saved that way.” Proud boasters will always go without the living water. But whoever desires, let him take the water of life freely. -C.H. Spurgeon
Paul considered himself the chief of all sinners. An Apostle not worthy of being called one due to his persecution of the Church. The man had authorization to put people in jail or worse!
But....God had other ideas. Thankfully so considering most of the New Testament came from his hand, as inspired by God.
I have heard from many that the first problem with everyone is some degree of pride. Someone has an idea of what 'good' is and in reality it's them creating a standard of measurement to base their life upon. This person thinks in their heart that they aren't as bad as that person. Well they don't do that, they are better than that other person. Some are so bold as to tell people their standards of good. Others don't even see it as a standard other than they aren't doing bad things.
The truth of it all...in the book of Romans God says we are all sinners worthy of death. Doesn't matter what kind of 'good' life we can live, it's rubbish. We honestly could be greater than anyone we know in doing great things! But if we have not Salvation in Christ Jesus we have done nothing. Getting warmed by the fire of others who are indeed saved will not save you. Going into a church building on Sundays will not save you. Every single man and woman was born guilty. We have a sin nature that negates every single good thing we could possibly do.
There's no partiality with Jesus on this. Either you receive His free gift of Salvation or you have not. Those who have not, will not enter Heaven. Jesus was clear on that. He is the only way to Heaven. Nobody can ever enter any other way. He was and is the only person who was and is worthy to open that door. Only those who are saved and have Christ in them can enter through that door. In their case God the Father sees only Jesus entering when a believer is called home to Jesus. He doesn't see the sinful person who is there. He sees the forgiven and sealed person there.
It matters not if you have all the world's riches or have nothing at all. Without Jesus as your Savior you will never enter Heaven. Simple as that.
So what is holding you back? I tell you the only one hindering you is you.
But if I do that then I won't be able to...
But if I do that then i can't...
Really? Considering that if God says it's your time to die, you want to hang onto something that is worth nothing in comparison to staying out of Hell? That's door number two. Hell. No in between. No Purgatory. Nobody here able to pray you out of Hell. If your sin is the same as everyone else's what makes you think they can pray you out of Hell when, if they aren't saved, are headed there too? Even if they are saved in Christ, they have no means of getting you out of Hell. The Bible says everyone is responsible for themselves in regards to sin.
So there's hope. Come to Christ. His arms are open. He doesn't care what life you had up to now. Today begins a new life for you if you say yes. A new life, stain free. No sin counted against you. A new Birthday if you will. Hope. You will indeed be able to walk into Heaven and be received by Jesus. It matters not the other people around you. They too must face the same choice. Only you can choose Jesus for you. Then any works you do after coming to Christ will amount to anything.
Oh why delay? Fear? Fear of what others think? I will tell you about true fear. True fear is what people in Hell are thinking when they realize where they are and that unless people they loved change, then they too will join them in torment. That's true fear. They are in torment and it terrifies them to know that every day millions join them because they rejected Jesus. Need to read that for yourself?
Need proof? The words of Jesus:
"Now there was a rich man, and he habitually dressed in purple and fine linen, joyously living in splendor every day. And a poor man named Lazarus was laid at his gate, covered with sores, and longing to be fed with the crumbs which were falling from the rich man’s table; besides, even the dogs were coming and licking his sores. Now the poor man died and was carried away by the angels to Abraham’s bosom; and the rich man also died and was buried. In Hades he lifted up his eyes, being in torment, and *saw Abraham far away and Lazarus in his bosom.And he cried out and said, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus so that he may dip the tip of his finger in water and cool off my tongue, for I am in agony in this flame.’ But Abraham said, ‘Child, remember that during your life you received your good things, and likewise Lazarus bad things; but now he is being comforted here, and you are in agony. And besides all this, between us and you there is a great chasm fixed, so that those who wish to come over from here to you will not be able, and that none may cross over from there to us.’ And he said, ‘Then I beg you, father, that you send him to my father’s house— for I have five brothers—in order that he may warn them, so that they will not also come to this place of torment.’ But Abraham *said, ‘They have Moses and the Prophets; let them hear them.’ But he said, ‘No, father Abraham, but if someone goes to them from the dead, they will repent!’ But he said to him, ‘If they do not listen to Moses and the Prophets, they will not be persuaded even if someone rises from the dead.’”
Is what you won't let go of worth it to you?
Let go of it and find Salvation in Jesus.
Soon you will find the peace you long for but have never been able to describe.
But if you don't...well...you just read a very real account of what's going on in Hell.
Even today there's evidence of people on their death bed, slowly dying, without Christ, slipping into Hell, crying out in pain from the heat. Yet they refuse to come to Christ. Into Hell they go. There are no other options.
Jesus isn't trying to deny you life, He's trying to show you life and how to truly LIVE.
Don't delay. Nobody reading this was guaranteed a today. God's mercy is why you are alive right now. His mercy gives you another chance to say yes to being saved. You are in shark infested waters, the ship you were on has sank, the only chance you have to live rests in the only one who can save you. Jesus.
Ironically everyone is equal in shark infested waters. In those waters you are not a successful businessman, you aren't a housewife. You are not a nurse nor a world renowned scientist. You are equal.
You are not a good person who always helps your neighbors or kids. You are not the one who always volunteered at the shelter. All equal. All in danger of dying.
Only in accepting the offer of Jesus can you be drawn out of those waters. Allah can't do it, Buddha can't do it. Only Jesus has the ability to make you stand on the water. Only Jesus saves.