Monday, May 21, 2018
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It was a day of national mourning; an unusual outpouring of emotion and affection for the man who had died. The final farewell to former President Ronald Reagan began with official funeral observances in the nation's Capitol. There were these long, all-night lines of everyday Americans paying their respects at his coffin in the Capitol Rotunda, the highest officials of the land paying tribute to the former President, the memorial service in the National Cathedral, and then that final journey on Air Force One to a family service at his ranch in California. One of the more moving moments of a day with many such moments was when Air Force jets flew over in what is known as the "missing man maneuver." Clusters of jets flew overhead, with one jet in the final cluster suddenly peeling up, away, and out of sight. That's symbol says a lot.
I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "The Sobering Truth about the Missing Man."
On that day of national mourning, Ronald Reagan was the missing man-the one who was suddenly not with us anymore. Someday I'll be the missing man. Someday you'll be the missing man, the missing woman. For many of us, that day will come with no warning. In the words of the Bible, "Do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring forth" (Proverbs 27:1).
For many people, that "tomorrow" was going to be when they finally got around to making sure they were right with God, and that tomorrow never came. Eternity did and they weren't ready. For you and me, the means of leaving this world may be an accident, a blood clot, a heart attack. But in reality, the "cause of death" really doesn't matter much does it? We're all terminal. That's why the Bible gives this critical warning: "Prepare to meet your God." (Amos 4:12) And there's really only one way to be prepared for that day when you and I are the missing man or missing woman.
In John 3:36, the Bible reveals that, from God's perspective, which is the only perspective that really matters, the whole human race is in one of two groups, facing one of two eternities. For some-eternal life in heaven. For others, what the Bible calls "the wrath of God." What makes the difference is really clear here. John 3:36 says: "Whoever believes in the Son (that's the Son of God, Jesus Christ) has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God's wrath remains on him."
Why is your commitment to Jesus the deciding issue in where you'll spend eternity? Because only Jesus died as your spiritual substitute, paying the death penalty for every wrong thing you've ever done. If you don't grab the only rescuer there is and put your total trust in Him, you're not going to make it. There's just no other way to have your sins forgiven than to stake everything on the only One who paid the price for those sins.
You may say, "Well, I haven't really rejected Christ." Look, if I just sit in the flight lounge, making no decision about boarding my flight, I won't be going on that flight. By not deciding, I decided. That's the way it is with Jesus. If there's never been a moment when you reached out to Him in total faith, making the Savior your Savior, you're not ready for eternity...or even for the rest of this life. And in 2 Corinthians 6:2, our word for today from the Word of God, it says bluntly, "Now is the time of God's favor, now is the day of salvation." When heaven and hell hang in the balance, it makes no sense to wait another day to give yourself to the Man who died so you could be with Him forever.
Don't you want to get this settled? Well, if you're ready to finally get this done, to make your personal commitment to Jesus Christ, tell Him that today. Tell Him that now. Our website is there to help you cross that line and know you belong to Him. I invite you to go there as soon as you can today - ANewStory.com.
Beginning today, you can be ready for eternity whenever it comes, however it comes. And that day, you won't be missing at all. No, you'll be with the Savior who gave His life for you so you could be with Him forever.