One of the exciting episodes of my life in the past few years was working on the Billy Graham crusade at the Meadowlands, in Northern New Jersey. Man, it was well organized. One thing that was especially well organized was security. You've got thousands of people coming and going, so security, of course, had to be very well thought through. Now, it was my privilege to be the chairman of that crusade but I'll tell you, if I was stopped, I still had to have my proper badge on! It didn't matter what your title was because if you didn't wear your badge, you weren't going any further, you weren't even going in that night!
Now one night we were entering the arena and one of Billy Graham's staff was with me, but he'd forgotten his badge. Well, when the guard stopped us I had my badge so I was able to explain to him who this gentleman was, and they knew who I was. I said, "Now this is really a good guy. He is okay. In fact he is on Billy Graham's staff! He finally got in, on my credentials. It worked!
Well, I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "Getting In On Someone Else's Badge."
Our word for today from the Word of God comes from Romans 14, the second half of verse 10 says, "We will all stand before God's judgment seat." It's a sobering sentence isn't it? And verse 12 says, "So then, each of us will give an account of himself to God." You see, when we're judged by God, we'll all be one on one with Him. Nobody is going to be standing there with you. Now there are some who hope to make it with God because of their connections like my friend from the Billy Graham staff who got in on my badge. Well, no one else's badge will count when you stand before God. You might try to say, "Well, Lord my parents were great Christians, my wife a dear spiritual lady. Think how much my son, or my daughter was really into this Lord! Ah, my brothers in the ministry, my grandmother prayed for me for years. She prays all the time. You know she's really religious." Or maybe we could try other connections and say, "Oh Lord, you know I was a good Presbyterian, I was connected to the Baptists, I was a strong Catholic." But none of our connections will matter to God. Nobody else's faith is going to impress God. Every man will give account of himself to God. You say, "Well, I spent years in the church." Well, Billy Sunday said years ago, "Being in church will not make you a Christian any more than being in a garage will make you a car."
In 2 Timothy 1:5, Paul says of Timothy, "I know the faith that was in your grandmother Lois, and then in your mother Eunice, and...now lives in you also." God has no grandchildren! You have to have your own relationship with him. You have to have a badge of your own. Have you been to the cross? Because that's what the badge says that gets you into Heaven. "I have been to the cross of Jesus, I have been there to have my sins forgiven. I know that Jesus is my only hope" - see that you have to go there for yourself, no one can go there for you. You have to go there for your sin, for your forgiveness, for your Eternal Life, exercising your personal trust in Jesus as your personal Savior. No one else can open the door of your heart.
It could be that He's brought us together so you could feel His knocking on your "heart door" right now. Please listen to it. Open up to the Savior. All the other people you know who belong to Jesus Christ will not get you into Heaven. They just make you all the more responsible because you've had so many chances to hear it.
If you're not sure that you have a badge of your own get to the cross of Jesus today. Don't miss Heaven because you thought that someone else could get you in.