There is no other emotion or experience quite as powerful as love. Of all the emotions, it is love as humans that we crave and desire most. It is love that enables us to hope, dream and achieve the impossible. But, as powerful as love is, the power of love or the confidence, hope and faith that love produces can be hindered if there is fear.
Many Christians live their lives just as I did in my early walk as a Christians in perpetual fear of hell because of their religious upbringing and struggle with this fear still. In fact, I would gamble (if I were a gambling man) that it is Christians who deal with a lack of confidence for their eternal life more than any non-believer. I encourage you to read the next few pages with an open heart and mind and ask the Holy Spirit to open the eyes of your understanding about His great love towards you.
Christians who live a life of fear over the threat of Hell looming over every mistake they make, believe God must be appeased or He will punish them and make them suffer. More torturous than that fear, they ultimately fear God does not really love them and will withhold His love and goodness over the slightest infraction. Perhaps the greatest fear is that they will “lose their salvation” because they struggle with a weakness or besetting sin.
This is not just fear, it is torture and torment. Anticipation of an unforeseeable conclusion is the worst kind of fear. Although most Christians of this mindset would not admit it openly, most think that actually making it to Heaven is a cosmic crap shoot, a roll of God’s dice. If they somehow do make it to Heaven, it will be by the skin of their spiritual teeth. This kind of living is not only damaging to the Body of Christ, this kind of testimony makes for a poor witness to those who wrestle with the same fears but are not yet believers of Christ.
In truth, God never meant for it to be “difficult” to have salvation and He certainly does not provide salvation and then retract salvation as though He were fickle. Some Christians through incorrect teaching believe that it is God’s will to actually send some people to hell. We can’t confuse passages of scripture that establish God’s sovereignty with the desires of His heart. Read what Peter writes concerning God’s heart about people coming to salvation:
2 Peter 3:8-9 - NKJV
8 But, beloved, do not forget this one thing, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. 9 The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is long-suffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.
Despite numerous scriptures such as this, many Christians do not grasp the full scope of the power of the blood of Jesus Christ. They act many times as if the blood will wear or wash off or that its redemptive power is only good if they are doing their part to make it work or maintain it.
As Christians, we need to repent of this. We need to change our thinking and pray for greater understanding concerning the depths of power that is found in the blood and grace of Jesus Christ.
Religious thinking (not biblical thinking) is often a counter-agent against the truth of the unfathomable power of the blood and grace of Jesus Christ. This is what the Gospel truly is and why it is truly called good news! The question is “have we understood and believed it, or do we allow religious mindedness to undermine its power?”
Paul the apostle emphatically dealt with this issue in his own day:
Galatians 3:1-3 - NKJV
3 O foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you that you should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ was clearly portrayed among you as crucified? 2 This only I want to learn from you: Did you receive the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith? 3 Are you so foolish? Having begun in the Spirit, are you now being made perfect by the flesh?
Because so many Christians do not fully embrace the power of the grace and blood of Jesus, they live a life filled with condemnation, empty of any real intimate relationship with God having no understanding of His heart towards them.
God is not in the business of desiring to send people to Hell, making people grovel before Him or punishing them. He is in the business of making people His children, and making His children into Kings and Priests who will rule and reign with power and authority beside Him both in this life and the next. The simple truth is, that God desires that all should be saved and has absolutely no desire that anyone should go to hell.
Jesus Christ by His own admission proclaimed that He came that we may have abundant life in John 10:10. The Word of God is full of teachings designed to help us know His love and goodness and that as His disciples, there is nothing that can separate us from the love of God.
God made us to have free will and make our own choices, because love requires free will. God cannot force Himself upon us. Even though many will go to Hell because of their choice, it does not negate that God loved them and did everything He could to offer them freedom and life, including dying a death on the cross. There is nothing you need to do to appease God by your works in your own abilities to gain His acceptance and love and there is no terror, condemnation or fear of punishment to be experienced in relationship with God. Everything has been provided to us through Jesus Christ.
Our acceptance of Him by simple faith forever nullifies the threat of Hell and gives us the full inheritance of a son of God. The Bible indicates to us this simple truth; with the heart one believes unto salvation and with the mouth makes confession of such!
Furthermore, what Jesus did on the cross is not only enough to save us from Hell, it is enough to keep us from Hell, making us fully righteous, full of grace and the power to live holy before the Lord. This righteousness comes not from good works, but good works come from righteousness! Simple faith and trust in Christ as Savior are what is required for salvation. Good works are not what saves us or keeps us, but enduring by faith and complete trust in Christ and His grace alone:
Ephesians 2:8-9 - NKJV
8 For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, 9 not of works, lest anyone should boast.
No comments on this item Please log in to comment by clicking here