Someone asked a friend of mine the other day if he knew where he was going. Her intention was to make sure he knew his destination and how to get there. As we began to back out of my driveway I jokingly (but not so jokingly) said to him, “I sure am glad to know where I am going…I’m going to Heaven!” I am not going to Heaven because I deserve to go to Heaven, or because I am a pastor, or because I belong to a particular denomination or religion. I am going to Heaven because Jesus Christ has DONE everything to pay for my sins and reconcile me to God. There came a point in my life where I realized that my sins had separated me from God and no amount of DOING was going to make things better. I realized I needed what Jesus had purchased, and I turned away from my own accomplishments and depended upon His.
There are many opinions about where a person’s soul goes at the point of death (physical death is simply the separation of the soul from the body). Some suggest that the soul or spirit hangs around planet earth either haunting or comforting people. Others believe in reincarnation and others believe in purgatory. The good news is that we do not have to stake our eternal soul on opinions. Scripture clearly shares with us that we will spend eternity somewhere.
Hebrews 9:27 tells us that we all have an appointment with death, and after death there will be a judgment. Just as death is certain, judgment is also certain. If we know that we are going to die, and we know that Scripture gives us an opportunity to be ready for death and judgment, we are making a foolish decision not to prepare for this appointment.
The trouble with “DO Religions” is that you never know if YOU have done enough. You hope you have and when you compare yourself with others you may feel pretty good about it, but you never really know for sure. The best we can have is an “I hope so.”
God doesn’t want you to go through life wondering if you are ready for this appointment. He wants you to know for sure. Listen to what the Scripture says in 1 John 5:11-13-
And this is the testimony, that God have 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. I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God that you may KNOW (emphasis mine) that you have eternal life. (ESV)
God wants YOU to KNOW! He doesn’t want you to live your life in doubt and come to your appointment with regret.
Do YOU know, or do you keep on DOING in hopes that when the appointment comes you have done enough? Cary Schmidt, author of the book “DONE: What Most Religions Don’t Tell You About the Bible” says, “The word KNOW implies full confidence and understanding…It rests on fact rather than wrestling with doubt. It trusts rather than being frustrated in fear” (p. 26).
What if you really knew for sure “where you were going?” How would this change your life? Schmidt says (p. 26):
- It would remove the fear of death! I have told people that I’m not afraid of death, just the process. I know, because of my trust and reliance upon Jesus Christ, that when my soul leaves my body at the appointed day I will have a new residence in the place that Christ has prepared for me…a place He called “His Father’s house” [we usually refer to it as Heaven.]
- It also gives this life a new perspective. You should no longer be living for just the “here and now” but living for the eternal! You would be able to live a life of hope! You will be able to DO, not to earn abundant and eternal life, but DO in gratitude for it!
God wants YOU to KNOW. I want YOU to KNOW. Flagship Church wants YOU to KNOW! If YOU would like to KNOW we can share more with you through e-mail, phone or a personal meeting. Also feel free to visit http://flagshipchurch.org/truth-will-set-you-free/ for more insight. We hope that you will plan on joining us this Sunday morning at 10:30am at Flagship Free Will Baptist Church, 2728 Pebble Drive, Erie, Pa!