Tuesday, June 12, 2018
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It was a race against time. That last ferry boat to the island where we had a hotel reservation left at 8:30. We did everything the speed limit would allow. When we stopped for gas, we did one of my infamous Hutchcraft drills where you fill the car, empty yourself, and grab a meal in just minutes. All that's missing is the stopwatch. Yep! We roared into town and up to the dock at 8:40. We got there too late. We missed the boat...the last boat.
I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "Too Late to Get to Heaven."
Missing the boat to a beautiful island; you'll get over it. Missing the boat to heaven when you die; you'll never get over it. Surveys show that most Americans think they'll go to heaven when they die. Maybe that means "hope" they'll go to heaven when they die. God removes all doubt and makes it very clear who will and who will not go to heaven. Here's what the Bible says, "God has given us eternal life and this life is in His Son. He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life" (1 John 5:11-12).
If you have Jesus, you have heaven. If you don't have Jesus, you don't have heaven. I didn't say that. God did, and it's His heaven. We can't get into heaven with our sin, and we've all got it because we've had these years of choosing what we want instead of what our Creator wants. And our sin cannot be cancelled until its death penalty has been paid. And no amount of good living can pay a death penalty. Jesus did that on the cross for you because He really, really loves you. Our only hope, then, is going to Jesus and holding onto Him like a drowning person would grab a lifeguard. If there's never been a time when you've consciously given yourself to Him like that, you're not on the boat yet. You're in danger of missing the boat.
How does that happen? Days without Jesus become months without Jesus, which become years without Jesus until suddenly, often without warning, you're out of days. Along the way you may have been disinterested in Jesus, or you've been deceived about Jesus, or you've been put off by some of His followers lives instead of focusing on Him, or you've believed there's some way other than Jesus. Maybe you've just been distracted; you're too busy for Jesus right now. That's fatal busyness. Or could it be you do think you need Jesus, you've just continually delayed saying yes to Him. You've put Him off until later - until there's no more later.
Listen to our sobering word for today from the Word of God in Hebrews 4:7, "Today, if you hear His voice, do not harden your heart." Listen, He's coming to you again today. You hear His voice. He's giving you another opportunity to finally open your life to Him. Every time you say "no" or "later" to Jesus, you harden your heart a little more; making it less likely that you will ever know Him. Eternity is too long, hell is too real, and life is too unpredictable to put Jesus off again.
The step you've never taken - the step you need to take - begins by telling Jesus something like this: "Lord, I realize that my sin is costing me a relationship with God. And nothing I can do can pay for the wrong things I've done. That's why I'm grabbing You, Jesus, because of what You did on that cross for me - because of what You did when You rose from the dead. I realize now You are my only hope. And beginning right here and right now, Lord Jesus, I am Yours. I am Yours."
Man, I would love to help you be sure you understand that and have taken that step and know it in your heart. That's why our website is there - ANewStory.com. Please, at your first opportunity today, go there will you?
We don't know when God's last boat will leave or whether maybe this is the last boat. It's too important to wait. It's too expensive to wait.