I am always taken aback when someone leaves me a comment or message that says they are thankful that I have the courage to share the Gospel of Christ. Living in the country’s Bible belt, I don’t find it weird to say that I am a Christian. I grew up going to church multiple times a week and would attend “meetings” every night that they were held. However, I’ve never been one to openly talk about my faith, especially in person. Why, you ask?
I feel inadequate because I can’t quote you Bible verses, and I get mixed up on who said what when I am talking. I don’t want to say something wrong and drive someone away from the Lord. While a lot of my readers identify as Christians, I know there are others who have probably never had the Gospel shared with them.
As a child, I heard many “Fire and Brimstone” sermons from the pulpit. We were preached AT instead of being preached to. Preachers made it sound like it was impossible for someone like me ever to enter the gates of Heaven.
24 Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of God.”
As a child, hearing the verse about the camel going through the eye of a needle made me almost cry. I didn’t hear the “who is rich” part of that verse because I was too focused on the camel trying to go through the eye of a needle. I remember thinking that it was impossible! Shoot, I can’t even put a slender piece of thread through the eye of a needle, so how would a camel ever be able to fit through it?
I was an adult before I came to understand that passage, but it haunted me throughout my childhood. I never asked about the verse; it seemed cut and dry to me. I know that the Hell and Brimstone preachers meant well, but they focused so heavily on the damnation part that they forgot to share the GOOD news of the Gospel.
Yes, Hell is real, and there are consequences for not declaring that Jesus Christ is your Lord and Savior. But there is good news, and we are not camels!
The Good News is that Jesus has come as God in the flesh, and through his death on the cross, he has paid our debt. We are all sinners, and every person reading this has sinned and will continue to sin. The good news is, Jesus rose from the dead and intercedes on our behalf.
34 Who then is the one who condemns? No one. Christ Jesus who died—more than that, who was raised to life—is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us.
1 John 2:1
My dear children, I write this to you so that you will not sin. But if anybody does sin, we have an advocate with the Father—Jesus Christ, the Righteous One.
I know some people are waiting to get themselves “right” or “together” before they asked Jesus into their hearts. That’s backwards! He is the one who enables us through the Holy Spirit. Trust me, any good you see in me comes from the Lord.
As hard as I try, I will always fall short of the mark. My good works will never be enough, but I have an advocate who is interceding for me. Guess what? So do you. Jesus Christ is Heaven right now, sitting at the right hand of God, and He is pleading our case. This is not a “get out of jail free” card. We still have to do our part, and accepting Jesus into your life is the first step.
9 If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved. 11 As Scripture says, “Anyone who believes in him will never be put to shame.” 12 For there is no difference between Jew and Gentile—the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him, 13 for, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”
Ask Jesus to forgive you and invite Him into your life. The way is hard, but the reward is GREAT!
To God Goes The Glory!
Have A Blessed Day!