August 17, 2021
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It was my first overseas trip, and I mean trip. Ten thousand miles to Singapore, Australia, New Zealand, and there we were at Kennedy Airport. Me, my wife, our three young children facing three weeks of Daddy being gone. We'd never had that before. That's a long time when you're a little kid. Actually, it's a long time when you're the Daddy of some little kids. Well, I headed down the jet way, and I smiled and waved goodbye. Rounded the bend to the plane and then I wasn't smiling.
But Mommy was able to take some of the sting out of our goodbyes. She reminded the kids of one important fact. This separation wasn't permanent. It wasn't the end! It was only an interruption of our being together.
I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "Taking the Sting Out of Goodbye."
Not long ago I stood in the cold cemetery by the grave of the man who had been my last living cousin. For all of us it was, of course, a sad goodbye, but not nearly as sad as it could have been because my cousin had placed his life and his eternity in the hands of Jesus. Now, there will be a separation, but because of Jesus, because of what He did on that first Easter, the goodbye isn't forever. But then it really hit home, standing next to the grave of the love of my life and being able to say, "See you soon, Baby. See you soon."
All of us who belong to Jesus will soon be together again. There's nothing more important in human history than what happened in a graveyard early on that morning that we call the first Easter. Because Jesus Christ walked out of His grave and death got demoted.
Listen to our word for today from the Word of God in 1 Corinthians 15:54-56. "Death has been swallowed up in victory. Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting? The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ."
Death couldn't hold Jesus. And He has said to all who belong to Him, "Because I live, you will also live." So death can't be the end for anyone who has pinned their hopes on Jesus. He's not a dead prophet. He's a living Savior!
The Bible tells us that Jesus came to "...free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death" (Hebrews 2:15). Because of Jesus, death doesn't have to be the end. It doesn't have to be something to fear. It's only an interruption! It's the beginning of life beyond our imagination in God's heaven.
And you can't get into God's heaven with your sin. In some of the closing words of the Bible it says, "Nothing impure will ever enter it" speaking of God's heaven. But that's why Jesus died on that awful cross. He was paying for every wrong thing you've ever done. And now, He can erase every sin of your life from God's Book. You'll go to heaven, not because you were good, but because you were forgiven by the only One who can forgive your sin; the One who paid for it! Only Jesus did that.
You're not going to be asked what religion you were or how good you were. God's just going to want to know, "What did you do with My Son who died for you?" You have to reach out to Jesus. You have to grab Him like He's your only hope, and you could do that this very day. This could be your eternity-changing Jesus day. If you would say to Him, "Jesus, I have run my own life. I know that's wrong. I know it took your dying to pay for it, and I believe some of those sins You paid for were mine. Today I want to give myself to You, because you're a living Savior. Beginning today, Jesus, I'm Yours."
You're at a crossroads right now that everything depends on. I encourage you to go to our website. I can talk to you there by way of video, and you'll be able to see the road to being sure you belong to Jesus. That website is ANewStory.com.
The Bible says, "I have written these things to those of you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know you have eternal life." There's no greater peace, no greater security than knowing beyond a shadow of a doubt that you're going to heaven when you die. And you can know that today!