Mar 1, 2008

If you ever worry...

Today while witnessing to a co-worker the question of hell arose. I was not in a position to expound on the vast theology that lies behind the doctrine of hell, but I was able to touch on it's reality based upon Jesus' teaching (Mt. 5:29, Mk. 9:47-48) in regard to it's severity. This was only a flirtation with it's total reality.

This quickly led our discussion into the realm of what kinds of people will be there. We had a few conversations here and there in regard to this subject, but never was able to quite give a clear presentation based upon scripture. This individual not only often jokes about Christianity but downright insults it as well.

Nevertheless, given the circumstances and events of the past few days, I do not find any irony in the fact that what I had read prior to my conversation with this individual was going to be utilized in ministering to them. I also find no irony in the principle that it readily applies to the concern of worrying about how others treat us, whether or not they change (better or worse), and whether or not we feel vindicated by the world. It's funny how simple scripture lays it out and paints such a vivid picture of it.

If you have ever been in a position that causes you to think, "They should get this, they deserve that, it isn't fair, then what I am about to quote will offer some comfort in those matters. The Scripture says, we do not have to worry about whether someones actions receive proper consequences or not, we have no part in this act of retribution. It is actually self-centered and self-absorbed to believe that we can influence or carry out justice in the manner it is "absolutely" deserved.

Either way we look at it, good or bad, God will take care of these things. And to answer my coworker on the realities of hell? I simply emphasized what the Gospel was, what it was not, and what rejecting it cost.

It is a safe bet to believe that God will...

dealing out retribution to those who do not know God and to those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. These will pay the penalty of eternal destruction, away from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power,
(2Th 1:8-9 NASB)

Be faithful to Him, and speak truth to them...

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