Thursday, March 22, 2007

Thursday, March 15, 2007

The Golden Rule

Let’s talk about the Golden Rule. Most people say, “Oh, I’m a good person. I live by the Golden Rule. I treat people how I want to be treated.” Jesus said that loving your neighbor as you love yourself is the summary of the Ten Commandments. So we are going to take a look at a few of them to see if you indeed do live by the Golden Rule.

Have you ever told a lie? What does that make you?

Have you ever stolen anything—even if it’s small? What does that make you?

Have you ever hated anyone? Most people say, “No,” but when you ask them if they have ever insulted anyone or cursed at someone, they say, “Yes.” Well, that’s not exactly loving your neighbor as you love yourself, is it?

Now, here is what the Bible says about all this:

“…and all liars shall have their part in the Lake of Fire.” (Revelation 21:8)

“No…thief…shall inherit the kingdom of God.” (1 Corinthians 6:9-10)

“He who hates his brother is a murderer, and we know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him.” (1 John 3:15).

So, if the Ten Commandments are God’s standard for the Golden Rule (and Jesus said that they are), how will you really do on Judgment Day?

If you are honest, you will admit that you deserve to go to Hell, just like the rest of us. And if you can admit that, then I have some Great News for you: God does not want you to go to Hell. God sent Jesus to die for our sins, so that all of our sins—past, present, and future—can be forgiven. But we must come to God for forgiveness, and Jesus said, “Except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.” (Luke 13:5)

Do you know what it means to repent? Proverbs 28:13 says, “He who covers his sins shall not prosper, but whoever confesses and forsakes his sins shall obtain mercy.” Confession is simply admitting to God that you have broken His Laws by the way that you have lived (by lying, stealing, hating, etc.); forsaking is simply turning away from and abandoning that way of life. Doesn’t mean that you’ll be perfect, but it does mean that you will daily increase in Holiness.

Jesus said, “If you continue in My Word, then you are my disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” (John 8:31-32) Please read your Bible daily and obey what you read. God will never fail to keep any of His promises.

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Damien Nash

Damien Nash was a pro football player who played in college at the University of Missouri (Mizzou). He died about two weeks ago. Just dropped dead.

He had everything going for him, and it was all taken from him suddenly by the unbreakable jaws of Death. And there was nothing he could do about it.

You, too, will die someday. You will also be ruthlessly robbed by those same unbreakable jaws. And there is nothing you can do about it either.

The Bible says that there is life on the other side of the grave, Heaven or Hell, depending on how you qualify. Take a close look at yourself, because no one here will be able to speak for you on Judgment Day.

Have you ever told a lie?

Have you ever stolen anything?

Have you ever hated anyone?

If you have said yes to any of these things, please know the truth:

The Bible says, "...and all liars shall have their part in the Lake of Fire." (Rev. 21:8)

It makes it clear that no thief can enter heaven (1 Corinthians 6:9-10).

It further declares, "Whoever hates his brother is a murderer, and we know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him." (1 John 3:15; see also Matthew 5:21-22)

"But," you say, "I am a good person! I don't do these things all the time!"

Try that in court: it won't work on Judgment Day either.

God is Holy, Righteous, and Just--He will punish all sin.

"Every idle word that a man shall speak, he shall give an account thereof on the Day of Judgment." (Matthew 12:36)

Every secret deed done in darkness shall be brought to the light. (see Luke 8:17)

"[You can] be sure your sin will find you out." (Numbers 32:23)

"Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap." (Galatians 6:7)

For those of us who can admit that we deserve to burn in Hell, there is good news:

God sent forth His only begotten Son, Jesus of Nazareth, to take our punishment. Now, if we humble ourselves and repent, God can give us eternal life--instead of Eternal Justice--on Judgment Day.

Wednesday, March 7, 2007

The Pizza Illustration

I cannot take credit for this: I learned it from Gabe Graham of The Great News Orlando while we were Miami for an Evangelism Boot Camp on Super Bowl Weekend (no, I did not get to go to the game, but that was okay: Saving souls is much higher on my priority list).

Imagine your favorite pizza, nice and hot, just the way you like it.

Now, I am going to ruin your favorite pizza. (WARNING: DO NOT KEEP READING IF YOU HAVE RECENTLY EATEN OR ARE EATING RIGHT NOW.) <--YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED, SO YOU CAN'T SUE ME!!

Imagine that someone put a large piece of dog feces on your favorite pizza. Would you still eat it?

What if that person only put a small piece on it? Would you still eat it?

What if that person grated some dog feces and just sprinkled it on your favorite pizza? Would you eat it?

What if that person put some dog feces on your favorite pizza, and wiped it off? Would you eat it?

Not if you are in your right mind. Because nothing about that pizza will ever make you ingest dog feces. The dog feces has thoroughly corrupted the entire pizza, and it is good for nothing but to be thrown away.

Now, you may claim to be a good person, but think about this: no matter how good a person you are, if you are corrupted by sin AT ALL, then God cannot let you into Heaven. No sin, whatsoever, will enter Heaven. Period.

And you can go from there into the Good Person Test, etc. That's the pizza illustration!