God is Patient with Us? Why?
by David Brenneman
"Why would God need to be patient with me when I didn't DO anything?" Some ask this even today. There in is part of the problem. People even today don't think they've done anything to offend or upset God. He tells everyone why. Whether or not they accept what He has to say is another story. "For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God" Romans 3:23 NASB. The glory of God is God's standard, the bar He set, His expectations for human beings. "But I still didn't do anything! Why would that apply to me?" Well, you see, we're all born into sin. Adam and Eve were the first and we've all come from them...and by lineage, we are all impacted by sin. It's in our DNA and nothing we can do in and of ourselves can ever get rid of it. If that were the case Jesus would have been born as a man, lived as a man, suffered and died on a cross, for no good reason what-so-ever.
Begs another question for some of you probably: Why would He go through all that? The answer is simple. You have asked the question and you are the answer.
Most of the known world is familiar with John 3:16 "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, what whosoever believes in Him will not perish but have everlasting life.".
But read what comes next. That's the thing about life with God, there's always something next.
"For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but so that the world might be saved through Him. The one who believes in Him is not judged; the one who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God. And this is the judgement, that the Light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the Light; for their deeds were evil. For everyone who does evil hates the Light, and does not come to the Light, so that his deeds will not be exposed. But the one who practices the truth comes to the Light, so that his deeds will be revealed as having been performed in God." John 3:17-21 NASB.
Jesus didn't come to condemn you or I, He came to save mankind, all who would come to Him to be saved would be saved. When we DO come to Jesus for salvation, we do not stand condemned any longer. God takes the righteousness of Jesus and imputes that to all who come. What that means is that for all who come to Jesus to be saved, when God looks at us, all He sees is Jesus. He doesn't see our sins because they are no more. He casts them as far away as the east is from the west. That's Psalm 103 if you're interested.
But I know I'm not a good person! How in the world would someone like me be saved? It's simple. You come to Jesus, and He does what's necessary and needed. It's you and I trusting in what He has done to do what must be done, to save each and every one of us.
"But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart”—that is, the word of faith which we are preaching, that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation. For the Scripture says, “Whoever believes in Him will not be put to shame.” For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, abounding in riches for all who call on Him; for “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” Romans 10:8-13 NASB
We, as adults, complicate the whole salvation issue way more than it needs to be. Why? Because our sin nature, that sin that we are born with, wants absolutely nothing to do with the salvation that is offered in Jesus Christ. It wants to be the one to call the shots. It wants to do what it wants to do to make it feel the way it feels.
Jesus has not returned yet not because He's off somewhere sleeping. It's not because He has other things to be doing. It wasn't Him that set the day of His return. It was His Father who set the year, the month, the day, the hour, the minute, the second of when that time would be. Why keep it s secret? There's probably some more Biblical reason than even the most prominent theologian can come up with...but my thoughts go towards it does keep Satan from knowing what's going to happen before it happens in that particular case. We read that Satan's always got an antichrist ready in every generation. Always has one that he's prepared to put on the world stage to rule the world...but he has no idea when that date is. It was unspoken for good reason. Some easily point to the passage of Jesus not being willing that any should perish and that all would come to repentance. 2 Peter 3 again.
There's probably a list that's as long as your arm as to why Satan isn't to know. Also why humans would not know either. We can look at the fact that one passage that says that every knee shall bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord. We can look at the passage that says that every man and woman will be without excuse. Now THAT one strikes me as probably the more human of reasons why we wouldn't be able to know when. We would try to cram for the 'test' of judgment. It would also taint the truth that indeed everyone does what's right in their own eyes. For every man to be without excuse, means every single possiblity of every type of response to Jesus asking why we didn't accept Him as our Savior...would be played out. With the myriad of thoughts and ways of the human mind...that's a lot of possibilities. It's still not going to stop people from saying "But God!!! I....".
If you haven't come to Jesus to be saved, your name is not written down in the Book of Life. In much of today's language, the Membership book. That book of those who have a membership in the Kingdom of Heaven. It's not written there it's a guaranteed thing that those people will find themselves UNNECESSARILY in torment in Hell upon dying. It's unnecessary because while we yet breathe the breath of life, we have the chance to do the right thing in God's eyes. We have the opportunity to ask to be saved by Jesus. To have our sins forgiven, taken away, so that we might find life in Him.
A single sin is enough to keep anyone from entering into Heaven. We all have that, those who understand right from wrong that is. I hold to the belief that those not able to understand are granted a mercy and grace in regards to salvation such as those born with mental disabilities and those up to what the Bible refers to as the age of accountability. When the Rapture of the Church happens I know that millions of babies, toddlers and small children will be disappearing along with the young adult and adult population who fall into that catagory as well as those who have truly placed their faith and trust in Jesus for salvation.
It's a certainty.
It's going to happen.
Jesus IS going to return, just as He said, at an hour that we are not going to expect it. You aren't going to be able to point to some sign in nature and claim that is His entrance. You aren't going to have the news services putting up a headline saying that He's coming in the next few days....not that they would anyway.
You aren't going to know because nobody does. That's why the Bible says to all who come to Christ...to be ready. To be about telling others about Jesus while there's still time to do so.
"But my life will be so boring!"
"But I will have to give up what I like to do! What I love to do!"
Ok...consider this...you're on a sinking ship....and you have on one hand the things that you really like, really love on one side and on the other hand you have a lifeboat to take you to safety...which is more important?
Consider it also...eternity is well...for all eternity. To choose to reject salvation in Christ means eternal separation...not in some paradise...but in torment. God's Word says there's a severe penalty for sin. It's in painful torment in Hell at first, until the Final Judgment as told of at the end of time in the book of Revelation, then it's the Lake of Fire that will burn for all eternity. It is never ending. Never...ending. Read that again. It's n e v e r ending.
Are all the excuses that you hold onto really worth spending eternity in agony forever that will not go away?
Jesus loves you even in your worst. He cannot love you any more nor can He love you any less than He does right now. The cost is: free.
As it's written in the Bible too: what does it profit a man to gain the whole world and yet lose his soul? Easily put...there are billionaires and millionaires in Hell.
People who had 'everything' their hearts desired. They took none of it with them.
We all often get satisfied with sin too. We are all prone to get comfortable with the level of life that we lead and don't think that changing it is worth the risk.
My Dear Reader...please don't let that be a reason to say no to Jesus.
The gift is free....and there is a time limit to leave when Jesus returns. Many will cry out to Jesus AFTER He has returned to come back and get them.
You do NOT want to be in that camp.
You do NOT want to be one of those people.
If you think the life-altering changes that have happened in the last half dozen years were irritating...they are nothing compared to what's coming.
We live in a world with the THREAT of global economic collapse. After the Rapture...that's going to happen as a certainty.
We live in a world with THREATS of a dictator trying to take over the world. After the Rapture...that's going to be a certainty.
We live in a world with THREATS of global natural disasters. After the Rapture...God's going to use nature to impart judgments on this world...that's going to be a certainty.
We live in a world with THREATS of people killing and stealing. After the Rapture...that too is a certainty.
Even in the scope of several world wars and countless smaller ones...we have never ever seen in human history what's going to happen in 7 short years after the Rapture.
Those who have salvation in Christ Jesus won't be here. They won't see it. After the Rapture, many indeed will find salvation, and will be the hunted in this world. Satan will know that it's time and will have a world leader who will insist on being worshipped. Those who don't will be killed.
Let today be the day that you know for sure that you're going to be safe in the arms of Jesus.
Let today be the day that you find real life and real purpose in the life you live.
Please don't put it off any longer. Sooner or later there WILL be that last person in this 'age', this time period, as designated by the Father who will be saved.
It will happen. The first happened on the cross next to Jesus.
Salvation is free. There's nothing to earn, no card to punch, no credits to rack up. Jesus paid it all. It's His gift to you, should you receive it.
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