One of my favorite Gospel tracts is called Two Ways to Live: The Choice We All Face by Matthias Media. Listening to Bob’s message reminded me that, in the end, there are really only two ways to die. The choice we all face is to die as one of two types of people:
1. Those entering heaven saying to God, “Thy will be done.”
2. Those being cast into hell to whom God says, “Thy will be done.”
God’s offer of salvation and forgiveness of sins is one that has been extended to all, but the responsibility to turn from sin and surrender to Christ is a choice we must make on an individual basis.
God will not force anyone into submission. He’s a gentleman who patiently waits for us to realize our depravity and turn to Him for a solution.
While He is a patient gentleman, He is also a just judge who deals appropriately with sin and rebellion. Many of the deceived believe their respectability and good deeds will earn them entrance into God’s Kingdom. Unfortunately for them, God will not judge based on good deeds and respectability, God will judge based on sin and rebellion.
The Bible teaches that all are under sin, none are righteous, all have turned aside and none does good. We are all sinners who have come short of God’s standard of holiness (Rom. 3:9-23). Nothing any of us can do grants us entry anywhere but the Lake of Fire (Rev. 20:15).
As Bob so pointedly put it, “respectability will not keep anyone out of hell. There will be no attitude or personality reform in the end. God is currently extending an invitation for reformation now; the end will be too late.”
The bright side to this dark reality is that while we are helpless to save ourselves from eternal damnation, God has graciously provided a way of escape. The Bible not only teaches that all fall short of God’s standard, but that all who are justified are justified by God’s gift of Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross.
…for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood, to be received by faith. This was to show God’s righteousness, because in his divine forbearance he had passed over former sins. It was to show his righteousness at the present time, so that he might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus (Rom. 3:23-26).
God is our Great Judge and our Great Justifier. The choice we all must face is how we will choose to die… having rejected or received God’s gracious gift of eternal life in His Kingdom.
Father, help me to be honest with others about their eternal destination and upfront with all about their need for salvation. What a tragedy it would be for anyone I know to go to hell not have heard of Jesus through me.