A Pastor’s Perspective, A WARNING

Southaven, Ms

By: Mike Upchurch

A WARNING

Consider this a warning shot across the bow. You are on dangerous ground if you’ve not yet surrendered to the Lord. If you have not submitted to Him your future is in peril.

Are you continuing in your old ways, unable to let go of certain things in your life that hinder you from giving in to Him? Perhaps you’re holding on to that one relationship you know is wrong. Maybe you’re continuing in old habits that you know are destroying you.
And in spite of repeated warnings, you continue to turn your back on the Lord, wanting the voices in your conscience to be silent.
You’re hoping He will just go away and let you live your life. And you’re hoping that at the end of your life He will say “It’s ok, enter in to Paradise.” You are hoping. Wishing. Wondering.

But there will be a day or an hour or a moment when it will be too late for you to surrender to Him. The problem for you is that you don’t know when that moment will come.

Let’s examine your life. Perhaps you pray now and then. Usually and especially when you’re in trouble. You don’t go to Church, but you’re not a bad person. I mean after all, you’ve never murdered anyone. You don’t normally steal, but if you do, it’s small items that no one would miss. You might cheat on your taxes, but you’re certain everyone does. Perhaps you’re having an affair, but it’s because your Spouse has changed and the love is gone. Besides, this other person is everything you wanted, so who would blame you? You might lie now and then, but everyone lies, so it’s no big deal.

But maybe you don’t do any of those things we mentioned. Maybe that doesn’t describe you at all. Maybe you are a good moral person who doesn’t break the law. You don’t even speed in your car, and you are careful to always do the right thing, but you just aren’t interested in all that ‘religious stuff’. You tell yourself that you’ll deal with it later on as you grow older. After all, you just want to enjoy life for now. It’s not like the World is going to end tomorrow.

But yours might.

No, you are not really a bad person, but the problem with your life compared to that of a born again Christian is that their sins or mistakes or screw-ups are covered and forgiven when they confess them. And yours aren’t. Your sins will be judged at the end of your life. Each one of them. Each one you committed throughout your life. And they’ll be judged against the perfect and righteous standards of the Lord. Consider James’ definition of sin…..

“Remember, it is sin to know what you ought to do and then not do it.”
‭‭James‬ ‭4:17‬ ‭NLT‬

So let’s say something happens and the final bell has rung for you; you have died and your soul has left this earth. You find yourself standing before the Lord as He sits on His Throne. Your sins are being judged, but you look around and you have no one to defend you. No one to argue and plead your case. No lawyer could represent you anyway, as they will be pleading their own case before Him if they don’t know Him as Savior.
Because you didn’t surrender your heart and turn from your ways and confess your sins, you’re now all alone before the Lord, and you are naked and filled with shame. And to make matters worse, some family and friends are looking on. So no matter who you were in life, whether great or small, whether a celebrity or a nobody, you’ll stand before Him that day naked and humbled, unable to defend yourself.

But the worst is yet to come. After all your sins have been examined a verdict will be rendered against you by the Lord, and you will be found guilty! Unfortunately, mercy won’t be available to you, as mercy can only be applied during this earthly life and not after your death. You will stand before Him at the Judgement Throne with no hope of Grace.
You will be found guilty, however you won’t go into a holding cell awaiting punishment as is the case in earthly Courts. And you won’t get to appeal your case. No, you are sentenced right then and there. And you will hear the Lord say these words “Depart from Me, I never knew you!”

And the sentence rendered is worse than any prison. It’s an eternity without any love. An eternity with separation from all things good. It’s Hell. Literally. You are sentenced to Hell where there is constant pain and thirst as your body is engulfed in flames, but you can’t die. You are in torment and you’re totally alone. Forever. You may have been deceived into thinking that Hell will be non-stop wild parties with all your rowdy friends. But the truth is, if your buddies are there, they will be enduring their own torment, and partying won’t ever cross their minds.

You might say “Pastor Mike, how could a loving God send me to Hell?” Well, technically He didn’t. You did. You sentenced yourself by not surrendering to Jesus while here on Earth, while you had time. But unlike you though, the Christian will have a defender. The Lord Jesus, the Christ, will defend them and present them before the Father as blameless, and they will enter into Heaven filled with joy for all eternity. While you, on the other hand, descend to the depths and to eternal torment.

It’s pretty black and white. Give your heart to Jesus here and now while you can. Today. Confess your sins and turn away from them. Or suffer the consequences.

You have been warned.

And that’s the way I see it.

Pastor Mike