1998-02-13 - Sincerity Isn't Enough
Jesus' Difficult Teachings Series, Part 5
This one hit close to home for me, as I used to not fully understand it myself.
(Mat 25:10-12 NASB) "And while they were going away to make the purchase, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went in with him to the wedding feast; and the door was shut. 11 "And later the other virgins also came, saying, 'Lord, lord, open up for us.' 12 "But he answered and said, 'Truly I say to you, I do not know you.'
The left-out virgins sincerely believed they were going to Heaven. They were stunned to find themselves separated from the Bridegroom. But they weren't ready. I used to believe that surely God wouldn't condemn someone who truly were convicted that they were going to Heaven, and we do get into murky theological territory here, since faith is a gift. However we know there is only one way to eternal life.
(Mat 7:13-14 NASB) "Enter by the narrow gate; for the gate is wide, and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and many are those who enter by it. 14 "For the gate is small, and the way is narrow that leads to life, and few are those who find it.
The Bible is unequivocal on this. We may have a problem with it, how a just God could send to Hell someone who honestly believes in their heart that they are honoring God by believing what they do (i.e. some universalists), but that's when we have to trust in the justice and love of our God, Who spared nothing to see that we are saved.
(Rom 8:32 NIV) He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all--how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things?
And this should drive home to us the urgency of the Gospel, how crucial it is that we help spread the Story.
Dear Father, thank You that You want everyone to be saved. Please use us to spread that precious life-and-death message. In Jesus' name, amen.