1Pe 4:17-18 For it is time for judgment to begin at the household of God; and if it begins with us, what will be the outcome for those who do not obey the gospel of God? (18) And “If the righteous is scarcely saved, what will become of the ungodly and the sinner?”
I try to remind myself to preach Christ’s blessings as well as His curses. To talk about the beauties of Christ as well as His terrors for those who do not love His appearing. I probably tend to lean toward the warnings side of the gospel however because I know how many people deceive themselves about being in Christ when they really don’t know Him. We are called to examine ourselves to see if we really are in the faith. And I would hate for the Day of Christ to come and learn that I did not give adequate warning to those I preach to and they perish in hell.
The righteous, Peter says, are scarcely saved. Jesus said that we must go through much tribulation on our way to heaven. This world is a battle ground for the Christian and there are devilish, cosmic, and fleshly assaults on us every single day. Lies from the devil. Lusts from our flesh. Pressure from the world to get in line and conform.
But do we really believe that following Christ in this world is really that hard? That when we arrive in heaven we will find out that we were, like Lot, only one glance back from being lost if not for the preserving grace of God? But do we believe that now? When we are careless in prayer, in reading and hearing God’s Word, in coming out from among the worldlings around us – when we are careless do we realize what terrible danger we put ourselves in?
We are soon to begin reading through Pilgrim’s Progress in the first hour of our meetings on the Lord’s Day. This is John Bunyan’s account of his travels from the Broadway that leads to hell, and the battles he fought against all kinds of enemies who would destroy his soul. EVERY time he was careless, he nearly perished if not for the grace of the Lord.
How are you doing? Are you daily walking in faith, believing God’s Word – His threatenings and His promises? Are you daily in prayer? Are you being careful about your relation to the world and the earth-dwellers who populate it? Perhaps it is time for all of us to take a renewed look at these things and turn away from the carelessness that is a danger to our souls.