BE PREPARED!

 

Are you ready?   - I recently googled the word "prepare," and as you might imagine, there were many interesting results.   There are dozens of things we could, and should, prepare for. We can prepare for taking a driving test, or entering college, for surgery, or for natural disasters. But there is one thing, above all, that each and every person will one day need to be prepared for, and that is death.

Oh, some folks THINK they are ready for this one too. They already have their cemetery plot, with a grave stone on it - and it even has their name engraved. And there is certainly nothing wrong with that - I'm sure your kids would agree. But what I am asking is are you ready for eternity?   Have you prepared your heart, and soul, for heaven?

Sure, I know some people don't believe in an after-life - no heaven, no hell, death is just the end, that's it. However, if they are wrong, and I have no doubt that they are, God's Word says it will be too late after you have died to do anything about it. It's just like so many other things - you can wait too long and put it off until you end up completely missing your opportunity to be ready.

Why do people do this? Why are so many unprepared for the one thing we all know is coming?

Besides unbelief, the next most likely excuse is probably fear. The Bible even speaks of this, and it IS a powerful emotion. But look at what the Word of God has to say about the fear of death.

 

"Since the children have flesh and blood (this is speaking of humans), he too (Jesus) shared in their humanity so that by his death he might break the power of him who holds the power of death—that is, the devil—15 and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death."          (Hebrews 2:15,16)

 

Did you catch that? It says that Christ, by His death and resurrection, has FREED those who all their lives have been held in slavery by their fear of death. That means, dear friend, that you have been set free. The prison doors have been opened forever.   If you will truly and sincerely repent of your sin and put your faith in the Son of God, you can step right out of the darkness!

Most people are so paralyzed by the fear of death, that they just avoid the subject altogether.   But there is absolutely no reason to do this. THIS is why Christ came to earth - to set the captives free! To rescue us sinners!  And since Christ has conquered death, He has the power and authority to promise that through our faith in Him, we will also conquer death and share life and immortality with Him!

We are ALL sinners, and we know in our hearts, if we are honest, that we deserve God's punishment. But Jesus took our punishment for us. He paid our debt!   If you will repent, and turn your life over to God and Christ, you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit, who will transform your life into one that wants to honor God.

If the Bible is true, then preparing for eternity is THE MOST IMPORTANT thing each of us can do - EVERYTHING ELSE is secondary.

Eternity is a looooong time! This life is a vapor, a mere breath. The next life is FOREVER!   The difference between time and eternity is too great to even measure.   And to tell you the truth, I don't even know how long I will be here to tell you about it.

Whatever your reason is for not actively preparing for heaven, it is not a good reason. Just as an athlete practices and studies his playbook so he can be ready for the game, we need to study the only book that can tell us how to enter into God's eternal kingdom. If we don't, or won't, we are truly "wasting our lives," as Billy Graham has said. [1]

This kind of philosophy is not popular, I know. It never has been, but SO WHAT? The truth is rarely popular, but the moment you step out of this world and into eternity, you will undoubtedly wish you had spent more time preparing for the next life, and the world without end!

As the Scripture says, "Today is the day of salvation."[2] You may never get another chance. Today is the day to repent and believe in the Lord Jesus Christ!!

 

[1] Franklin Graham, Billy Graham in Quotes, Thomas Nelson, 2011, p.212 
[2] II Corinthians 6:2  

 

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