“He spoke plainly about this, and Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. He then began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests and the teachers of the law, and that he must be killed and after three days rise again. “
~Mark 8:31-32 (NIV)
One of the toughest things about being in ministry is trying to help people understand that this Jesus thing is simple, but it’s not easy. It’s simple to recognize that Christ came to die for our sins and was resurrected to prove He can give us eternal life. Simple…
But the thing that is not easy is turning your life over to Him. Simple to say, but hard to do because we want to control things and do it our way.
Something that has been troubling me lately is that I believe there are many (probably a majority) people in American churches today who claim they have professed Jesus as their Lord and savior but will end up in Hell.
What? How can I say such a thing?
Because the Bible clearly states that God will tell people, “I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!”(Matthew 7:23)
Also, I was studying Revelation 3:16 in Matthews Henry’s Concise Commentary a while back and this line jumped out at me.
“There are many in Hell, who once thought themselves far in the way to Heaven. Let us beg of God that we may not be left to flatter and deceive ourselves.”
The causes of the indifference and inconsistency in religion Revelation 3:16 speaks of, the commentary explains are, self-conceit and self-delusion.
Think about that for a minute and let it sink in.
How many people, do you suppose, sit in Ameican churches Sunday after Sunday, week after week, year after year and never change?
How many people sincerely believe they are right with God simply because they said a prayer at youth camp 20 years ago?
How many people who claim to know and love God are virtually indistinguishable from everyone else in and of the world?
What about you? Are you truly transformed? Are you a new creature?