Thursday, April 25, 2013

I Don't Mean To Be Offensive...

All scripture references are from the King James Version of the Holy Bible.

Have you ever heard the expression, "in your face," or perhaps have you ever used it yourself? I have always liked the expression I once heard, I can't remember where, that "your freedom ends where my nose begins." We, probably none of us, like to have people get into our face,or our space. I am not anti-government, just fiercely independent.  Have you ever heard the term "the church militant?" I have always thought and taught that the church should be on the offensive.  The Lord Jesus did give the command (it wasn't just a suggestion) in Mark 16:15 to "Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature." We need to obey that command. We don't have His words translated into English just for our reading pleasure. Yes, the church needs to be on the offensive, but without being offensive about it.

Jesus was asked by one of His disciples in Luke 13:23, "Lord, are there few that be saved?" Jesus reply was the famous words in verse 24, "Strive to enter in at the strait gate: for many, I say unto you, will seek to enter in, and shall not be able." Many will seek to get into heaven but for whatever reason, Jesus said, "shall not be able." It won't be because they want to go to hell!  I remember one night years ago, I was working at the Kaiser Aluminum plant in Tacoma Washington. In the plant they had what was called "pots" where the bauxite ore was reduced to aluminum. It was very hot work! Up to about 150 degrees working conditions. Usually we had a schedule to do, then when done, we were able to wait until the end of the shift and go home. One night during the Winter, as we waited to punch out, one guy was standing with his back to a pot warming himself. A fellow worker raised the door of the pot behind him as a joke. I will never forget his expression as he jumped away from the pot. He said, "if hell is anything like that I don't want to go there." 

In the parable of the rich man and Lazarus, found in Luke 16:19-31, the Lord said in verses 22-23a, "And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels into Abraham's bosom: the rich man also died, and was buried; And in hell..." I have read that some Bible scholars don't think this was a parable because the Lord called Lazarus by name. There is a heaven to gain and a hell to shun. Most people think that if hell exists, they won't go there. But the Lord Jesus said in Matthew 7:13-14, "Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it." The vast, vast majority of humanity, men, women and children, are  headed for a devil's hell. They don't need to go there!

I don't know about you but I want no one to go to hell. Not my worst enemy! (I don't have any enemies that I know of) But let me declare to whoever may be reading this blog, if you do not know the Lord Jesus as your Saviour and Lord, if you have never obeyed the gospel as outlined in Acts 2:38, you are one of the many Jesus spoke of in Matthew 7.  Jesus came, God in the flesh, to reconcile you and I to God. And as your friend I say to you as the Apostle Paul said in 2nd Corinthians 5:20-21, "Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ's stead, be ye reconciled to God. For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him." The Lord Jesus took your place, He died for your sins, that you might through His death on the cross, "be made the righteousness of God in him." Don't turn Him away, He is your only hope to escape the torments of hell.

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