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April 14, 2017

April 14, 2017

"Don't Just Hope You'll Go to Heaven"

“And this is the testimony:  God has given us eternal life and this life is in His Son.  Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life.”  1 John 5: 11 - 12 NIV

I’ve had this experience many times.  I’m talking with someone and I say to them, “Do you think you’re going to heaven?”  They respond, “I hope I am.”  

They then go on to explain that they’ve lived a good life, tried to be true to themselves and to others. Many times they offer a list of good deeds, but that’s part of the problem.  You see, going to heaven doesn’t depend on what you’ve done.

And hoping isn’t good enough.  Your eternal destiny is too important not to know for sure.  We all know we’re likely going to die at some point.  For some it will come sooner than others.  

So how can we be sure that we have eternal life?  It’s really a very simple answer, God has already prepared it for us.  We just need to accept it.  We do that by believing in Jesus.  If you have Jesus in your life, you get to go to heaven.  If you don’t have Jesus in your heart, you get to go to hell.  

That’s pretty clear, isn’t it?  That’s why Christmas and Easter are so important.  If Jesus hadn’t come at Christmas and died on Good Friday to rise again on Easter we’d be hopeless.  Nothing else would matter.  We wouldn’t have a choice about whether we’re going to heaven or hell.  

But our verse reminds us that even though we were dead in trespasses and sin, God made us alive in Jesus.  God nailed everything that separated us from Himself to the cross.  But He won’t force us to make the most important decision of our lives.  It’s in our hands.  It’s time to choose, now!

Peace in the Lord,

Pastor Don