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Salvation part 3: Are you ready?

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By Jon Edgell

“It is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment” (Hebrews 9:27 KJV).

Back in the stone age, when I was doing door-to-door evangelism (there was always two of us), we’d ask the people who answered the door the question, “If you knew you were going to die today, would you go to heaven?.” Can you imagine doing this today? People would slam the door in our faces and call 911, “There are two strange men at my door threatening to kill me!” What a sad commentary on the state of our society. What we were really doing was attempting to find out if they were ready for the Lord’s return. Are YOU ready for the Lord’s return? There’s no other question more relevant and important than this one. Hebrews 9:27 tells us why.

1) “It is appointed.” This simply says that death is unavoidable. 151,600 people die every day. Because you live in the United States, there is a 1-in-25,000 +/- chance of you dying today. Sooner or later, by one means or another (unless the Lord returns first) you will die. You had no control of how you came into this world, but you can decide how you go out and where you’ll wind up after you’ve gone.

2) “For men.” You are no exception. Does this really need an explanation?

3) “Once to die.” You only die once. Countless times in my life I have heard the expression, “You only live once” as a motto, an encouragement to live life to the fullest. It’s entirely up to you if that “fulfilled life” is one with or without Jesus Christ in it. And whether you live life with or without Jesus determines how you will die. One morning in 1888 Alfred Noble, inventor of dynamite, awoke to read his own obituary. His brother that had died and the reporter carelessly reported the death of the wrong brother. What shocked Noble the most was that he was heralded as “The Dynamite King.” As far as the general public was concerned this was the entire purpose of his life. What will be seen in your obituary? What will be said concerning your purpose? How will you “go out”? With Jesus or without Him?

4) “And after this.” Death is not the end; it is just the beginning of eternity. Your death is merely the prologue to the first edition of the limitless volume commentary of your life. And the subject matter of this endless work of literature will be either eternal life or eternal death. Please choose life everlasting by making Jesus Christ Savior and Lord of your life. “Someday,” D.L. Moody used to say, “you will read in the papers that D.L. Moody of East Northfield is dead. Don’t believe a word of it! At that moment I shall be more alive than I am now!” And so, either eternal life or eternal death awaits you.

5) “The judgment.” Judgment is everyone’s destiny. A 2014 CBS News poll reported that 77% of Americans believe in heaven. 63% believe that they will go to heaven after they die, mostly because of their good works. But the Bible teaches that “the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord” (Romans 6:23).

The Apostle Paul wrote to the church at Philippi addressing the Lord’s second coming, “that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father” (Philippians 2:10-11). This will take place and every person who has ever lived will be involved. At this point no changes can be made. You will meet Jesus just as you are at the time, whether saved or lost. The good news for you today is that you have an opportunity to make sure you are ready for the Lord’s return. Ask Jesus to forgive you of your sins and ask Him to be Lord of your life. Then you will be ready.