On a slow day outside the abortion facility a few days back, I glanced up the road and saw a man smoking on a cigarette walking toward me. He looked vaguely familiar, but with the sunglasses he was wearing, I was not sure if I had met him before. He made his way closer to me and I greeted him with my usual, “Hello my friend.” He returned the greeting and then asked for one of my gospel tracts. By now, I was remembering who he was. His name was Terry. Not the Terry I had mentioned in online post, but another man who frequents the neighborhood walking back and forth to the service station at the top of the hill.
As I gave him the gospel tract he requested, I told him it was the good news of Jesus Christ an asked if he was living for the Lord? With a puff on his cigarette and with his raspy voice, he said, “One of these days.”
“One of the days! Why not today!” I exclaimed. What if you do not get tomorrow? What if today was your last day? Terry displayed absolutely no concern to live for the Lord, and looked away from me and pointed out a gentleman walking toward us, telling me to ask him as he walked off puffing his cigarette.
If I had asked Terry if he believed and feared the Lord, mostly assuredly I would have received a quick yes. But ask Satan himself and the answer too would be no different. My pastor recently noted that if you simply say you believe in God, you have qualified yourself to be a demon. As the book of James states even the “demons believe and they tremble” James 2:19.
One of the points that I simply desire to make is if we truly believe, we will do more than profess, but our life will be different. Get hit by a truck and you will be changed. If God has saved you, there will be a change as well. Most agree that the opposite of “love” is “hate.” Jesus said that ,”If you love Me, keep my commandments” John 14:16. Do you have a longing my friend to keep God’s Commandments?
Again, if you question Satan on if he believes in God and fears him, expect nothing but a yes. Ask him though if he has a desire to do that which please the Lord, by no means does he. And what he says will be proved true by the fruit he produces, as will it be with all who profess Christ. “A good tree cannot produce bad fruit and a bad tree cannot produce good fruit.” Matthew 7:18
Satan is a liar and the father of lies. He comes to steal, kill, and destroy. He hates God and hates all who belong to Him. He is the very opposite of Jesus Christ. Jesus is our example to follow. He came to do all that pleases the Father. To do the will of Him who sent Him. Jesus was obedient to the Father, even to a criminal’s death on a cross, as it should be with all who bear His name. Philippians 2:8
My other point. Consider who God is and the condition of your soul.
I have a former co-worker that I ran into a few weeks back. We worked together nearly twenty years ago. I left the job and hadn’t seen them since till recently. Now I say I have known them, but in reality, I have only known of them. We worked at the same place, we said hello at the beginning of our shift, but there was no relationship. I didn’t know if they were married with kids, where they lived, etc. There was only a belief of their existence, but no knowledge of who they were.
Quite often this is with God. We live with a belief of His existence. But show no knowledge of who He truly is or of His attributes. He is God and has split time in half to show the crown of His creation how much He loves them. When He should have crushed His enemies and been just in doing so, He showed mercy and made His enemies His friends. He sent Jesus to die this criminals death on a bloody Roman cross as payment for our crimes against Him. This is how God forgives sin. Not by us saying a sinners prayer or simply saying ,”I’m sorry.” Consider that we should be sorry, we’ve sinned / rebelled against a Holy Righteous God!
Oh consider my friend what we deserve and what we have received! Consider all the more what Christ received and what He rightfully deserves! 2 Corinthians 5:21 notes, “For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” John MacArthur calls the verse the heart of the gospel and sums it us by saying,
“Here God treated Jesus as if He had lived our lives, then turns around and treats Jesus as if He has lived our lives.”
My friend, do not be as Terry was. Do not put off what must be done today for tomorrow. Consider the great King of the universe and what He has done the lowliest of sinners, what He has done for you. Run to Christ, run to His throne, don’t walk. Run to His thrown and know His great mercy. Consider greatly who God is and the condition of your soul. Live a life pleasing to the Lord, a life worthy of the price paid.
Thanks Shawn & Jamani for the sermons that helped me write this.