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(worth going to hell) SCRIPTURE - St. John 3:19 - 20                                                  MAY, 1997

AND THIS IS THE CONDEMNATION, THAT LIGHT IS COME INTO THE WORLD, AND PEOPLE, LOVED DARKNESS, RATHER THAN LIGHT, BECAUSE THEIR DEEDS WERE EVIL.

FOR EVERY ONE THAT DOES EVIL, HATES THE LIGHT, NEITHER COMES TO THE LIGHT, LEST THEIR DEEDS SHOULD BE REPROVED.

SUBJECT - IS IT WORTH GOING TO HELL FOR ???

This month's subject, deals with a particular group of people, sinners. And just who, you may ask, is a sinner??? A sinner, is any one, that practices sin. It may be you, your brother or sister, mother or father, aunt or uncle, husband or wife, son or daughter, or even a friend. Any one that is not born again (saved), is a sinner. Each and every one of us, were born into this world, a sinner. It makes no difference whether you are young or old, rich or poor, male or female, or what race, creed or national origin, if you are not saved, you are a sinner. You might say, it has a 100% equal opportunity, non discriminatory policy, of hiring any and everyone that enters the doors of this world. No need of filing unfair hiring practices lawsuits for this employer. The reason I use the terms hiring and equal opportunity, is because the majority of you, are familiar with these terms. When you go for a job interview, you expect to be considered for that job, irrespective of your race, creed or color, national origin, or sex. It is a job for life, and pays wages too. [ROM. 6:23] says, 'the wages of sin, is death. Your position in the church, or your family's position can't change the fact that you are a sinner. Your parents, could be saved, sanctified, and filled with the Holy Ghost, speaking in other tongues when you were born, and you are still a sinner.

Now, having finished my introduction, my question to you is, what are you going to do about it???

Some of you will answer, 'I want to get saved.' or 'How do I get saved??'

Surprisingly, the majority of you will say something along the lines of, 'I think all of this religious stuff you are talking, is nonsense. Everybody sins. God loves all of us, and it would be unfair if He sent any one to hell.' Well, let me answer by saying this, if any one ends up in hell, it will not be because God sent you there, it will be because you sent yourself there. That's right, you sent yourself there by rejecting the light, that God sent, to show us the way of salvation. And that light, is Jesus Christ [ST. JOHN 8:12].

Most of us know what wages are, don't we??? You work for them. You work so many hours or days, and at a set time, you receive something that reflects the amount of time you worked. Those are wages. Well, by the same token, sin, has a wage. It is death. This not just physical death, it is spiritual death, total and eternal separation from God. It is hell and the lake of fire and brimstone [Rev. 20:14]. It will be, for those that end up there, eternal torment.

To describe this torment, think of it like this. We all know how it feels to get burned. Some, more than others. Well, depending on our tolerance for pain, some of us will black out. This is the body's way of saying, 'I better shut down, because I can't take it.' That is a safety valve, so to speak. Of course, at a later time, the body, may be able to be started back up, and you can go on from there. Other times, it can't, and you are dead. Well, in the second death, your body, will be feeling all of the pain from the fire, but, will not shut down. You will not pass out, neither will your body be consumed by the fire. In other words, every single square inch of your body will feel all the pain, inside and out, and there will be no relief.

Now, having said that, I would think that most people, with any sense of good reasoning, would say, 'maybe I should check this thing out, and see if there is any merit in it. Notice, I said people with 'good sense of reasoning.'

But, after all of this, would you believe there are still some of you, who will say, 'well, I'm not ready yet.' Without trying to deliberately embarrass anyone, because I have been met with this answer on numerous occasions, considering the options, that is the dumbest thing that any one can say. And, let me say this, at one time, I was one of them. I know what it is like. Living a life of sin seemed to be the greatest thing going. Pimping, womanizing, partying, after hours joints, gambling, doing a little drugs [the light stuff, like weed, and the ones that enabled you to stay up for days], cabarets and the like. Driving a set of wheels, that said, 'I have arrived.' Cruising the avenue, looking for women. Like the commercial says, 'It doesn't get any better than this!!!" Man!!! talk about being blind. I was on my way to hell, and felt good going.

Then, all of a sudden, the bottom seemed to fall out. Situations started happening in my life, that I couldn't do anything about. My contacts couldn't help me. My money couldn't help me. Getting high, only delayed the inevitable. When I came down, the problem had gotten much worse. That is when I started questioning my self, and realizing that everything I had put my total trust in, wasn't going to get me any peace of mind. That's when I turned to a preacher, that happened to be a foreman of mine. For years, he had tried to witness to me. And for years, I gave him the same answer, 'I'm not ready yet.' But now, I was in a position, where I sought him out. And he gave me the answer. And it changed my life. And then I thought of something. 'All these years, when I thought I was living, I was really dead. Dead to life. Dead to reality, and most of all, dead to God.' You see, most of the things I was doing, and you are doing, was geared to find happiness and peace, outside of God. And the more we try, the lower we sank, like in quicksand. The pieces, never seemed to fit right. The drugs, make you sick, or kill you. The fornication, lowers your ability to love a special individual, and could kill you. The money, gives you a false sense of power, and popularity. Gambling, is for losers, hoping for that illusive 'big hit, which if it does come, usually makes the person break even, for all the years they have lost money. Or, it makes them think they are on a streak, which drives them further in the hole.

I want you to do something, right now. Look at your love interest. If they are there in the house, or in the bed with you, and ask yourself this question, 'Is he (or she), worth going to hell for???' Look at your booze, and ask yourself the same thing, 'is it worth going to hell for???' Look at the drugs, 'are they worth going to hell for??' Look at your lifestyle in general, and ask yourself, 'is it worth an eternity in hell???'

Now, the reason, that you don't want to face the truth, is because many of you know what it is, but you refuse to accept it. You think you are sooooo, 'with it', that you are above the truth. But, rest assured, you will be brought down, sooner or later [NUM 32:23]. Then what?? Are you going to track me down?? What if I'm gone?? Are you going to track some other preacher down?? What if they are gone?? What if they are too busy??? Are you going to pick up that bible, that has an inch of dust on it, you know the one sitting on the mantle?? What if it is gone?? As bad as it may seem, if those are gone, think of what it would be like, if you sought God, and He was gone. That possibility exists now, and when you end up in hell, there is no hope. God says, his Spirit, will not always strive with man [GEN. 6:3]. And in the story of the rich man and Lazarus, when the rich man was in hell, he was told that there was a gulf between him, and those in the bosom of Abraham, and no one could cross it, to go to the other side [LK. 16:19]

If you end up in hell, it will be for one reason, and one reason only. And that is, that you love your evil ways, more than you do the one that died on the cross for you. You have said, 'Jesus, I don't care what you did, I'm not going to give up my lifestyle for You, or anyone else. You can go jump in the lake, for all I care!!!' Now, while many of you, would not dream of saying that directly to Him, that is a polite way of what your actions are saying. Because you are revealing what is in your heart. 'As a person thinks in their heart, so are they' [PROV. 23:7].

Of course, there is a solution to your situation, and that is, that you give your life to Him (JESUS CHRIST), right now, while there is still time to do so. For as sure as you are reading this, time will surely run out, sooner or later, and what will you have to look forward to?? Hell, and eternal punishment. Is that what you want??? If so, then be content with what you are doing.

Some of you are ready, right now. You want to make that change. But, you don't know how. Well, here is all you have to do. Pray this prayer to Jesus,
'Lord Jesus, I am a sinner, and I come to You, and ask You, to forgive me and to be Lord of my life. Not just part of it, but, all of it. Come in to my heart, and cleanse me of my sin. I believe that You died on the cross for my sins, and rose from the dead for my Justification. And, right now, according to Your word, of which You can't lie, I am now saved.'

Congratulations, though it may not seem like you accomplished any thing, or the prayer didn't seem to shake things up, or maybe you stumbled through it, if you prayed that prayer from the heart, that is, meaning every word, you are now saved. The bible says, 'with the heart, man believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth, confession is made unto salvation [ROM. 10:10]. It makes no difference how messed your life has been, as far as God is concerned, you, at this moment, have no past. You are a new person, a baby, if you will, in the family of God. And we all know, nothing is more innocent, than a newborn baby.

Now, as a newborn person, you can correctly say, you are a Christian. For, no one is a Christian, unless they are 'born again.' Sorry people. Just because you have been a member of a church, and even been baptized, if you have not made a personal confession to God, and not a man, repenting of your sin, and asking Jesus in to your heart, call yourself what you want, but you are not saved.
NEXT MONTH'S MESSAGE - A TIME TO DIE!!!

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