fruitage of the spirit's journal

Expressions from the Heart

Do You Fear Judgment?

God's wrathDo You Fear Judgment? by Julie McAllen

I am not sure what hell is, but I do know there is such a thing as being completely separated from the presence of God. There is judgment, I just don’t know exactly what that looks like. I do know that if anyone admits that they are under that judgment, then they have not yet understood the good news of how God yearns to save us from condemnation. In other words, God would rather us NOT go to hell.

16″For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 17For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. 18Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son. (John 3:16-18)

When a man fears he’s going to hell, he knows he stands condemned already. Do you want to escape that judgment? It’s totally your choice. There is no good deed you can do to gain life. There is no amount of money you can send to any church or charity to gain life. God long ago made the way for you and He is still waiting for you to take the gift. Re-read the scripture above. What does it say the way to eternal life is? Does it say you have to perform some good deed? NO! Does it say you have to “pay” in some way? NO! What does it say? It simply says to believe in Jesus. The good news is that while we deserve to be punished for every bad deed and every bad thought we’ve ever had, Jesus ALREADY took the punishment for our sins.

8But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. (Romans 5:8)

God is not waiting for us to clean ourselves up first so that He can forgive us. The truth of the Bible tells us that while we were still sinning He forgave us. Yes, because He loves us. We all are sinners, every one of us. We all can come up with things we’re ashamed to admit we’ve done, said, or thought about. Our thoughts condemn and accuse us. But God desires a relationship with us so much, that He was willing to sacrifice His life to balance the scales of justice. Sin DOES require a payment.  A sacrifice must be made. You can choose to pay with your own life and take all the punishment on yourself…or…you can go to God in prayer and tell Him you know you deserve the punishment, but you accept that Jesus Christ took it for you. His blood was poured out for you. And when you understand that love, something happens! You trust these words:

1Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, 2because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death. (Romans 8:1, 2)

13We know that we live in him and he in us, because he has given us of his Spirit. 14And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world. 15If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in him and he in God. 16And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him. 17In this way, love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment, because in this world we are like him. 18There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love. (1 John 4:13-18)

Do you fear judgment? Do you want to be free of the law of death? It is simple. Go to God, admit you are a sinner, accept the forgiveness He’s already paid at the cross, and ask Him daily to guide you into His truth. He is faithful, open your heart to Him and He will provide. He loves you. To further illustrate the point, a story in the Bible tells this beautifully. There were two men who were on their way to hell. They both mocked Jesus as he hung on the cross dying. But one man had a change of heart as he looked at Jesus.

38There was a written notice above him, which read: THIS IS THE KING OF THE JEWS. 39One of the criminals who hung there hurled insults at him: “Aren’t you the Christ? Save yourself and us!” 40But the other criminal rebuked him. “Don’t you fear God,” he said, “since you are under the same sentence? 41We are punished justly, for we are getting what our deeds deserve. But this man has done nothing wrong.” 42Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.” 43Jesus answered him, “I tell you the truth, today you will be with me in paradise.” (Luke 23:38-43)

One man admitted his sin and knew he deserved punishment. The other continued to mock God. Which one are you? Why would Jesus promise paradise to such a sinner? What good deed could that man do to prove his worth? He was dying that very day, he couldn’t go to church or give to a charity to clear his name. So what was it? He admitted his sin, he confessed it to Jesus and believed in his heart that the righteous one (Jesus) was dying for the unrighteous (himself, a sinner). We stop mocking God when our eyes open to this. Praise God, it is His grace that saves us. This is the word of faith. This is the gospel.

8But what does it say? “The word is near you; it is in your mouth and in your heart,” that is, the word of faith we are proclaiming: 9That if you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved. 11As the Scripture says, “Anyone who trusts in him will never be put to shame.” 12For there is no difference between Jew and Gentile—the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him, 13for, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”(Romans 10:8-13)

This is my way of showing love to you as love has been shown to me. God loves you dearly and does not desire for you to die in your sins. Trust His truth today and you will be with him in paradise.

Keep Yourself In God’s Love, Julie

November 9, 2009 Posted by | According to Scripture, Expressions | , , , , , , | 1 Comment

   

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