It's that time of the year when we sit back and reflect on all the good (or bad) we experienced/accomplished this year.
Some will look back over these last 12 months and smile with a sense of satisfaction. Others will look the same direction and sigh over what could have been.
Speaking of what will be, there is someday coming a year-end review that will give many plenty to smile about or sigh over, for all eternity. Actually it's more accurately a "life-end" review. I speak here of that inevitable moment after your final breath in this world when you will stand before the creator of heaven and earth - God, and will be asked to give an account for how you lived, what you did with all that was entrusted to you, and most importantly, WHO you lived for (2 Corinthians 5:10, Romans 14:12)
When that moment comes (and it most certainly will), here are the top 5 excuses you MUST NOT give when you stand before your creator during that review process.
ONE: “…BUT I WASN’T THAT BAD. IN FACT, I FEEL I WAS A GOOD PERSON COMPARED TO OTHERS.”
First of all, that’s a dumb response…even at a workplace interview. You should never hold other people’s flaws as your standard of good behavior. Secondly, God’s already said in the Romans 3:10, “No one is righteous–not even one.” and in Isaiah 64:6, “….All of you have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags..” So, response #1 is a no-go!
TWO: “COME ON GOD, THAT’S NOT FAIR!”
First you have to ask, by whose standard are you measuring fairness?
Even here on earth, fairness differs from culture to culture. What people in Morris country, New Jersey consider fair is radically different from what people in Kabul, Afghanistan think is fair. So even in an earthly human court of law, the "fairness" argument would fail you. Besides that, in the strictest sense of the word, fairness means, “[to be] in accordance with the rules or standards.” If God were to evaluate our lives based strictly on His rules and standards, (and I mean this next part with all seriousness), we would be eternally-screwed!!
You and I should be deeply grateful that God doesn’t judge us by fairness, but by grace. That’s why Romans 5:8 says, “But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”
THREE: “WAIT, CAN’T YOU JUST GIMME ONE MORE CHANCE?”
FOUR: “BUT I NEVER KNEW.”
Fair enough. So tell you what, let’s get that out of the way now. Here’s the Gospel message:
God created mankind, but our first parents, Adam and Eve, sinned. This caused a rift in our relationship with God because their sins passed on to all of humanity. In fact, their original sin in the Garden of Eden is perpetuated every time you act (or don’t act) according to God’s word. The consequence of sin is an eternal separation from God in real place called hell. God doesn’t want you to end up there so He provided a solution by sending Jesus to die on the cross for our sins. When you place your trust and faith in Jesus Christ, God applies the payment Jesus paid on the cross to your account so you no longer have a debt owed to God. So the invitation today is to confess with your mouth that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and is Lord, believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead and He lives today in heaven reigning as king, then you will be saved.
Now you’ve heard.
But of course you’re probably more concerned about, “that guy” in the middle of the African or Amazon jungle who never had a chance to hear the gospel message.
Don’t worry about him.
Aside of the fact that missionaries and the advancement of technology has made it possible to spread the Gospel farther than was once possible; God will ensure that everyone who stands before Him has in some shape or form been exposed to His law (Romans 2:12-15).
FIVE: “WHO DIED AND MADE YOU KING?”
I would strongly recommend you not even bring this up. But should you suddenly find yourself, “ballsy” and want to challenge your Maker, then you should know that Jesus Christ Himself died and became king.
Here’s how the Bible describes it: He never sinned, but died for sinners to bring you safely home to God. He suffered physical death, but was raised to life in the Spirit. (1 Peter 3:18). He was handed over to His executioners by God’s set purpose and foreknowledge; and you, with the help of wicked men, put him to death by nailing him to the cross. But God raised him from the dead, freeing him from the agony of death, because it was impossible for death to keep its hold on him. (Acts 2:23-24).
I know it's the last few days of the year and I should probably be more positive and upbeat in my last blog entry of the year. But I can't help but think of the fact that someday, our life will face this day. Its last few moments. For in the first moment when we open our eyes on the other side, we will find ourselves at this life-end review I just described. When that moment comes, DO NOT allow either of these 5 responses become your reality.
The truth is, in the presence of God’s blazing light of glory (Hebrews 12:29), none of us will be able to stand, much less query Him about what He did or did not do. Any other response apart from saving faith in Jesus Christ will end disastrous for you, hence why Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life, no man (or woman) comes to the Father except through me.”
Be smart. Turn to faith in Jesus Christ. He’s eager to welcome you into His family while you still have the time. So, trust in Jesus by confessing with your mouth that He is Lord and believing in you heart that God raised Him from the dead. (Matthew 11:30).