The Narrow Way

I know you have heard it, that lie from the pits of hell that Heaven is not hard to get into. You just have to do good, be good and God, because He is good, will take you to Heaven when you die. I have heard this falsehood from friends and family. “What kind of God would send someone to hell?” The reply is that God does not send anyone to hell; they choose to go there because they did not choose to believe in the only way to salvation that God provides, His Son Jesus. Don’t be deceived. God is a God of love and mercy, but He is also the great “I Am,” the God of Justice. He wants to set things right in the world that have been wrong for so long and the only way He can do that is to banish sin. There will be no sin in Heaven and no one can be good enough to earn their way there. No confessions to a priest or last rites will guarantee your way through the narrow gate. Only Jesus! It seems so simple, yet so many are perishing because they choose to keep living in sin and ignorance rather than accept truth and life. Since none of us knows when we will die, we need to live like it may be the next moment or as though Jesus is coming back imminently. God provided a way for us, narrow though it may be. We have to find our way back to Jesus and then stay on that pathway for the rest of our lives. God’s desire is to save all, that no one would spend eternity in hell, but He is a God of justice and He will allow us to go there if that is what we choose. Choose and live wisely…the narrow way leads to life!

May you be blessed with the knowledge of God’s great love for you and may you stay on the narrow path until He calls you home.

Judgment Begins in the House of the Lord

Our Bible study group is reading a book entitled THRIVING IN BABYLON by Larry Osborne. It’s an enlightening book about God’s judgment and how innocent Daniel was taken to Babylon, not because of his own sin, but because of the sins of his nation. God had called on Israel to repent, repeatedly, in fact, but to no avail. So, God, being the just God that He is, allowed consequences including the Babylonian captivity. Harsh? Yes, but sometimes harsh is the only thing that gets our attention.

In pondering the sins of our nation and how God has called us to repent and the fact that it has not happened on a large scale ( or some would say, at all), I have to say that our nation is ripe for God’s judgment. God has been gracious and merciful with the United States for centuries, but He will not wait forever for repentance. Repentance is change, turning away from sin, not just crying because you’re sorry you were caught. Thus, I believe that the things that are happening in our nation today, with godless leadership who have few morals and no real moral compass, are a direct result of the lack of repentance in our nation.

As Christians, we are appalled at the acceptance of the LGBTQ+ agenda and all of the sin that goes with it. But, are we equally appalled when a young couple comes to church and unashamedly admit that they are living together? God calls that sin, too, but we have come to accept a lot of things as just a change in the culture instead of the sin that it is. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying that the couple should not be allowed to come to church. What I am saying is that the fact that they are living in sin should be addressed and they should be told that the only clear path to God is repentance, which might mean they separate or even get married. In today’s culture, that is not at all popular. The current belief system is that you need to “try out” living together before you get married and make that commitment. I’m okay with that if you can show me one place in God’s Word that He says living together is okay. Are we equally appalled at those who steal from their employers by turning in false expense reports? Or those who walk away from a long-term marriage because they have “found someone else”? I think you get the idea.

There are many sins in today’s culture, even in the churches that we attend, and God will not be mocked. He consistently points out the sin and we consistently make excuses. My favorite excuse is, “But, God, what I am doing is not as bad as so-and-so and their sin.” Hmm. God may already be dealing with that other person, but if He is dealing with you and your sin right now, that is enough for you to deal with.

Judgment begins in God’s house, not with the pagans. After all, they are already on Satan’s side, so although God’s love reaches out to them, He is very concerned about the sins that we, the ones called by His Name, have allowed to creep into our own lives. We cry out to God because there are millions of babies killed by abortion. We cry out to God when the President of our nation supports abortion and rant about how godless that is. But, do we not see that our own attitudes towards the sanctity of life have led to this debacle? The silence of the Christian community is deafening. How many judge the one getting an abortion instead of reaching out a hand to offer assistance and counseling?

I guess what I am trying to say is that I am not surprised at the mess that our nation finds itself in. The church is a microcosm of the nation and the church itself needs to repent. Go back to the last thing God told you to do and do it, no matter how hard it is or how humbling. Then, do the next thing, Then, the next thing. The United States may not be carried off in captivity to Babylon (a wicked nation that is used as an example of evil in the Bible), but we may be more like Babylon ourselves than we are willing to admit.