Friday, February 15, 2008
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Power - that's what mattered most to Napoleon. He wanted power, and he got it. Under his leadership, the armies of France won some stunning victories. They extended control well beyond their borders, but that wasn't enough for Napoleon. He knew there was one thing, one force that stood in his way. It is said that one day he gathered all his top officers together around this large table. Laid across that table was a map of Europe with a big red spot on it. That spot was England. Pounding his fist on the table, Napoleon raged: "If it weren't for that red spot, I could have it all!"
I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "That One Red Spot."
I can almost picture it. Satan gathers his demonic lieutenants around a large table in hell, looking at a map of the world - a map with a big red spot on it. That spot marks a hill in Israel, just outside the city of Jerusalem. On that hill stands a cross, stained with the blood of Jesus Christ. Satan knows he's gone as far as he can. With almost uncontrolled rage, he shouts, "If it weren't for that red spot, I could have them all!"
But that red spot is the Devil's graveyard, and it can be the graveyard for his hellish plans for you if you make what happened there yours. To historians, what happened there was the brutal crucifixion of an innocent man. But you need the view from God's side to understand "the rest of the story." And He gives it to us in Colossians 2, beginning with verse 13. It's our word for today from the Word of God. It says: "He forgave us all our sins." That is huge! Every lie, every selfish action, every immoral act, every immoral thought, every time we've used somebody, hurt somebody, every proud thing, every dirty thing - all those acts of rebellion against our Creator. They are an eternal indictment, and they carry an eternal death penalty.
But at that "red spot," here's what God did so you could be forgiven. "He took it away," the Bible says, "nailing it to the cross." When Jesus was nailed to that cross, so was every wrong thing you've ever done. Satan thought he could have you with him in hell forever. But listen to what these verses reveal: "Having disarmed the powers and authorities, (Jesus) made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross." Jesus didn't lose when He died. He won! He shattered sin's power. He made it possible to cancel the hell of anyone who puts their life in His hands. That day on Skull Hill, the Devil lost you if you give yourself to the only One who can save you.
Has there ever been a time you did that? It's a conscious commitment to Christ, so if you have, you know you have. If you haven't, be thankful that God has given you an opportunity to change that. This could be the day you say to Jesus, "I'm yours, Lord. You died for me, you came back from death for me. Today I trust you as my only hope for now and forever."
Hell's only hope of keeping you is to make you ignore Jesus, or postpone Jesus, or put your hope in something other than Jesus until your last breath. Then hell can have you forever, but not if you belong to Jesus.
It's time to make your way to that "red spot" - that cross where God's Son paid the price for your sin. It's time to take what He died to give you. If you're at that point, I think our website would be a great help to you. You can make sure that you belong to Jesus Christ; that you've begun your relationship with Him. There's a lot of helpful information there. Just go to yoursforlife.net. Or you can call toll free and get the booklet Yours For Life. Just call 877-741-1200. I just don't want you to miss Him.
Jesus, and what He did on that cross, really is your only hope. You tell Him that today that you will trade hell for heaven.