Thursday, December 28, 2017
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I was learning to ride a bicycle, and my dad was my teacher. Across the street from our apartment was a schoolyard as big as a city block. Like most city schoolyards, it was all concrete, no grass. In the middle of that big expanse was the only obstacle for a bike-riding rookie-a big old metal flagpole. But how could anyone run into that when he had the whole schoolyard to learn in, right? It can be done. Yeah, there I was, wobbling along, trying to learn to keep my balance on two wheels with my dad just behind me. Suddenly I heard him saying, "Turn, boy." My hands were frozen to the handlebars. I was sure turning either way meant crashing on that hard concrete. Again, "Turn, son!" I was closing in on the flagpole. Now it was a desperate cry from the lips of a disbelieving father, "Turn or you're going to hit the pole!" Bonngggg! I hit the pole. I still have the chipped tooth to prove it.
I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "Missing the Turn that Saves Your Life."
I made a painful mistake. I didn't make the turn that could have saved me. You know, there are lots of people like that. There's a turn that God is telling them to make; a turn that could save them from a life without meaning and an eternity without hope. But they just won't turn.
You may know a lot about a lot of things, but there's nothing more important in all the world than to understand the turn that will keep you from God's punishment and take you to God's heaven. It's described many places in the Bible, including Acts 3:19, our word for today from the Word of God. It says, "Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord."
Here's why this is so life-or-death important. The sin that verse talks about will keep us from ever experiencing God's peace and God's love in this life and from ever entering His heaven when we die. A perfect God cannot have a relationship with an unforgiven sinner. But what we just read from God's Word talks about every sin you've ever committed being erased from God's book forever! Which means the only thing standing between you and God-between you and heaven-could be gone if you make the turn.
Obviously, the turn is a turn to God. And the way to Him is through His Son, who died to make that way. In God's own words, Jesus "bore our sins in His own body on the tree, so that we might die to sins" (1 Peter 2:24). The gift of eternal life is in the nail-scarred hands of Jesus, the One who purchased that life by giving up His own for you. But here's the part that some people miss. When you turn to Jesus, you're turning your back on something else. You're turning your back on the junk that killed Him. You're making a decision that you're going to abandon the sins of the past that were the very sins He died to get rid of.
That's what the "repent" part of turning to God is all about-turning your back on your sins to turn to Jesus as your Savior. You won't be instantly perfect, but you're deciding to let Jesus change you. It's His power that will change you, but your decision that you will change.
Look, you can't face east and west at the same time. You've got to turn away from one to face the other. So it is with Jesus and the sin He died for. But then, why would you want to continue to defy God and poison your life with the sin that ultimately always kills? We're talking a new you here, from the inside out! A new you that begins the moment you say, "Jesus, I'm Yours!" God's come to you today to offer you complete forgiveness and life forever. Don't miss this opportunity.
In fact, that new you is what our website's all about. It's called ANewStory.com. That's the name of our online destination. Why don't you go there and find out how your new story can begin today?
Without Christ in your heart, you're heading for a collision with God and an eternity you don't want. But hey, listen, there's still time to turn.