• P. Frank

It’s Not Too Late

Most everyone has heard the catchy sayings “you only live once,” “life is short, get out and enjoy it,” “follow your dreams,” and “be true to yourself.” These are dangerous lies that many believers and unbelievers alike listen to and take to heart. Bottom line is, if you refuse to accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, then yes, you will only live this one life. However, if you believe in Him and repent of your sins, this life is just the very short beginning of your eternal life in heaven with God. So, a better saying might be “eternity is forever, prepare for it!”

Fear not, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the Kingdom. Sell your possessions, and give to the needy. Provide yourselves with moneybags that do not grow old, with a treasure in the heavens that does not fail, where no thief approaches and no moth destroys. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.” (Luke 12:32–34).

When did Jesus tell us to follow our dreams or be true to ourselves? Never. Rather, “He said to all, ‘If anyone would come after Me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow Me.’” (Luke 9:23). Without the unconditional love of Jesus Christ front and center throughout your entire life, you can never have real hope. Minor and major twists and turns in your life will throw away all of your superficial hope. Anchor yourself in the truth that Jesus Christ humbled Himself by stepping down from His throne in heaven to become one of us. Anchor yourself in the truth that Jesus died on the cross to overcome every sin. Anchor yourself in the truth that Christ rose from the dead to conquer death once and for all, laying a straight and narrow pathway to everlasting life.

If Jesus were to return, or you were to die immediately after reading this, where would your soul be headed? Do you believe that Jesus Christ died for you? Our hearts are deceitful and our emotions fluctuate like the wind. We cannot understand His full plan for our lives. FEAR NOT! God will not lead you astray or lie to you. God never changes. He knows everything. Trust Him. Scripture tells us: “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make straight your paths.” (Proverbs 3:5–6).

Another common expression often repeated in Christian circles is “God helps those who help themselves.” If that were true, then Jesus’ death on the cross and resurrection from the dead would not have been necessary because we would play a major part in our own salvation. That simple expression sounds good on the surface because, here in America, we believe hard work pays off. But how can we play any part, significant or insignificant, in our own salvation? Scripture tells us that “all of us have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags.” (Isaiah 64:6a). Even our good deeds are rotten in God’s eyes, because of the shroud of our sin.

But FEAR NOT! Scripture also tells us: “For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God.” (Ephesians 2:8). When Jesus was hung on the cross, he was placed between two thieves. They must have committed serious crimes to be punished by crucifixion, a punishment reserved for making an example of someone. Remember that Jesus forgave one of them moments before he died. Jesus knew the thief only believed in Him through fear. But the point is, he truly believed in and trusted Jesus with his soul in his last moments on this earth. That is why Jesus promised him, “Truly, I say to you, today you will be with Me in paradise.” (Luke 23:43). This is a stark reminder that God’s grace and mercy does not depend on what you have or have not done for God. Rather, it is what God has done for us – He gave us the free gift of salvation.

In the book of Exodus, God did not have the angel of death check inside the houses to see who was worthy or not. Rather, God had the angel of death check for blood on the doorposts. None of us are worthy or deserve salvation. None of us can save ourselves. This is why we need a Savior; this is why we all need Jesus front and center throughout our entire lives. Only the sacrificial blood of Jesus can save us. Consider this: after Adam and Eve plunged the human race into sin in the Garden of Eden, God asked, “Where are you?” (Genesis 3:9). God didn’t wait for Adam or Eve to seek Him out, He went to them. God welcomed their confession, then, after giving them His plan for redemption and restoration, He punished them by exiling them from the garden. Their punishment was temporary because God always follows through with His promises.

God loves us more than we could ever imagine. He has already done all the work for our salvation. So, I ask again: If Jesus were to return, or you were to die immediately after reading this, where would your soul be headed? It is not too late to accept Jesus’ free gift of salvation and repent of your sins.

Be still, and know that I am God.” (Psalm 46:10a).