It is an almost impossible thing for the human mind to comprehend – that one day I will stand before God Almighty, alone, and give an account of my life. We will all come face to face with our Creator one day and His verdict will only go one of two ways.
Yes, God is a loving Father but He is also a God of justice, righteousness and wrath. God’s wrath, the reality of Hell, preaching against sin and the need for repentance is heard less and less on today’s pulpits – because it doesn’t pleasantly ‘tickle the ears’ of the listeners, it makes people uncomfortable, it’s unpopular and people will not be lining up at the door of the church.
But the truth is that God’s word is meant to make people uncomfortable, otherwise, how will they repent? How will they see the error of their ways and turn to Christ? How will they see the bondage sin holds over their lives and their desperate need for the freedom Christ brings? How will they see that the eternal destiny of their souls lies in the balance, so that they can turn to Christ, while they still have the gift of life…
We think that if we ‘dumb down’ the message, be politically correct and speak love, love , love we will make Jesus somehow “more attractive”, make God less threatening and that way bring more people to accept the message of the gospel…
Here’s the thing, Christ does not need us to paint Him in any particular way or present Him in a ‘politically correct’ manner so as to make Him seem “more attractive”. He is not just “another option”, He is the only way, the truth and the life. Without Him, a soul is lost for eternity. Period. All He requires is that we share the full truth of the gospel and the Holy Spirit does the work of transforming the hearts of men.
Secondly, God is not to be trifled with and what is sorely lacking today is a reverential fear of God. The Bible even tells us that it is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God, Hebrews 10:31. Love God, yes, but fear Him also. Before God, we are nothing but breath…just breath. And might I add that we are all a single breath away from eternity. A single breath from standing face to face with our Creator. All of us. And we must meditate with reverential fear what that day will be like should we stand before Him without Jesus.
Thirdly, because of this ‘dumbed down’ message, countless now believe (and many times with the best of intentions) they know Christ but the questions that each and every one of us need to ask ourselves are these – Which Christ do I know – Is it the Christ of the scriptures or a ‘man-made’ version of him? And
does Christ in the scriptures know me? And it is a question we all must ask and resolve while alive before we stand before the judgment throne because there will be no further opportunities once we stand face to face with Jesus. “And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’ Matthew 7:23.
Irrespective of how the truth of God’s word makes people feel, the fact is that it is the truth that people need to hear. It is the truth that saves them. If they only hear half-truths, how can they experience full and true repentance?
Our job is to speak the complete truth of God’s word, in love and with wisdom, while we trust the Holy Spirit to do the rest. But it must be the truth – anything less, dooms the soul of the hearers.
In fact, the most loving thing anyone can do is not only share God’s love but to also warn people of the reality of God’s judgment, as uncomfortable as it may be; because, without Christ, that judgement is permanent and eternal; because without Christ, there is absolutely zero hope for the soul that stands before a Sovereign Righteous God.
Christ’s death upon the cross was the ultimate display of His love for us. If we reject that love, then we are faced with only one other outcome, when we stand before God.
God is not to be trifled with, and it is a fearful thing to fall in the hands of the living God
I pray we choose wisely.
Femi Adebanji I Christian Speaker I 3:16 Ministries, South Africa.