Tuesday, February 21, 2017
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There are some things that are just tough to advertise – like things people need but don't want to think about. Like insurance to pay your funeral expenses some day. Well, a local insurance agency gave it a good try in the newspaper ad they ran. In bold letters it said, "FINAL PAYMENT". It went on to make a case for doing something now to take care of the last obligation of your life. Of course, that ad had a serious inaccuracy.
I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "Your Final Payment."
According to the Bible, there is still one more bill to pay after the funeral. It's the payment for all those me-first life choices that the Bible calls "sin". In God's words, "Man is destined to die once, and after that to face judgment" (Hebrews 9:27). The payment for running our own lives is an eternal payment. But like that final payment for your funeral expenses, you can do something now to take care of that awful obligation once and for all.
Our word for today from the Word of God comes from 2 Thessalonians 1:8-9, and it graphically explains the terrible final payment for sin, and it suggests the way to remove it. These are sobering words from the One who will be your Judge and mine. It says, "The Lord Jesus will punish those who do not know God and do not obey the Gospel of our Lord Jesus. They will be punished with everlasting destruction and shut out from the presence of the Lord and from the majesty of His power."
Everlasting destruction-shut out from God's presence. I know we don't like the idea of hell, but it doesn't change the reality of it. If you don't have life forever, there's just one alternative–living death forever. But that's not what God wants for you. It's not what He wants for anyone.
He says in the Bible, "This is how God showed His love among us: He sent His one and only Son into the world that we might live through Him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins" (1 John 4:9, 10). In other words, God loves you so much that He sent His Son to take on all the punishment for every sin you have ever done. Your final payment was paid by Jesus Christ on His cross!
That's the "Gospel", the good news. God said the ones who would never see Him (never see heaven) are those who "do not obey the Gospel (the good news) of our Lord Jesus". That Gospel calls upon us to grab Jesus as our Savior like a drowning person would grab a lifeguard to save them.
That's why the Bible bottom lines the most important decision you will ever make in these words, "Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved." That's believe as in totally trusting Him as your only hope for having your sins forgiven, for going to heaven someday.
Have you ever consciously given yourself to Jesus to be your Savior from your sins? If not, does it make any sense to wait any longer? Not when eternity's at stake, and eternity can begin any time. If you want to trust Jesus as your rescuer from your sin and it's from its' penalty-the One who died for you-would you tell Him you're His from this day on; that you're pinning all your hopes on Him to be the forgiver of your sins and a guarantee of you having eternal life someday?
Only He can rescue you. That's why we've really dedicated our website to helping you know and be sure that you have begun this life-saving, eternity-changing relationship with Him. It's ANewStory.com. I hope you'll go there as soon as you can today.
The final payment is one God doesn't want you to pay. He sent His Son to pay it for you. But He leaves the choice in your hands, and that choice will determine your eternity.