When my friends tell me they get a headache, they don't get much sympathy. I usually just tell them that pain always attacks at the weakest point. They really appreciate that! Actually, we all have our favorite headache remedy - one or two of this pill or that and we wait for the relief as those pills race through our system. I know they do - I saw it on a commercial once. But maybe you remember a twisted act of individual terrorism that happened a few years ago, it turned relief into tragedy. Someone had managed to put poison in some pain relief capsules - there was a sudden series of deaths from some people who took this particular brand. I remember reading, for example, about a flight attendant who arrived home after a trip with a serious headache. She reached for a couple pain relief capsules. I'm sure she thought they would make her feel better soon. Instead, she died from them.
Well, I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "The Cure that Can Kill You."
Our word for today from the Word of God comes from Proverbs 14:12. It is one of the most sobering, unsettling statements in the Bible. "There is a way that seems right to a man, but in the end it leads to death." God is trying to warn us that we can be on a spiritual road that feels right, that we really believe will give us what we've been hoping for - but it will lead us to death.
Just before Good Friday, America was stunned by the mass suicide of 39 members of the "Heaven's Gate" cult. Then we saw some of the video testimonials made by those people just before they took their own lives. They talked about how at peace they were, how happy to be taking this next step - suicide. And we learned that these were not some religious freaks - they were bright, competent people. They believed very sincerely that they were graduating to something better.
But listen to Jesus, the Son of God. He says, "I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved" (John 10:9). And it is Jesus who said, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me." If you're counting on anything or anyone other than Jesus to get you to heaven, you're just not going to make it. Sincerity doesn't make what you believe in right - that flight attendant sincerely believed that pain reliever would her. Peaceful feelings don't validate what you're counting on either - the people who died from those poisoned capsules were expecting relief. They died instead.
Our hearts are incurably spiritual. We need a spiritual answer, and we know it. We are looking for something bigger than ourselves, something that can give us significance, that can conquer the darkness inside of us, that can take us to something better someday. Ultimately, we are looking for a Savior who can make us what we could never be otherwise and take us to a heaven we could never go to any other way.
And there is only one Savior - there's only one Person who took the death penalty for the sinning you and I have done - that's Jesus - on the cross. And no belief, no religion - even if it is about Jesus - can get you to heaven when you die. Only the Savior can do that. You may be on a beautiful spiritual road that looks and feels right - but like pain relievers that contained poison - it may lead to death.
But Jesus is reaching out to you right now, He's urging you to put all your faith in Him - to make the Savior your Savior.
Jesus died so you don't have to. Don't risk depending on a remedy that can't cure sin - because only the Savior can do that. He is what your heart's been longing for all this time.