Thursday, October 5, 2017

The Invitation


That’s not a very informative invitation, is it? We would want to know what, when, where and pretty much who else is going to be there. We might not want to spend time with some of the others, right? Sort of picky about who we spend time with. Why not? Time is valuable and there are some people who simply take up your time without providing entertainment, enlightenment or even companionship.

So we look at invitations, and turn some down.

Would the host come looking for you? Of course not! How silly. The host would understand that this particular event was not something that drew your interest.

What if you found out later that it was a marvelous occasion! Many of your friends, some of your most liked relatives (along with some you really didn’t want to spend time with, though) accepted the host’s invitation and not only had a wonderful time – they were still there! Imagine that. Didn’t even call out to you and let you know that this was simply not to be missed. What would you do?

Here it comes. The Bible verses you knew just had to be here – this is a blog to encourage Bible reading. You knew that when you surfed here, didn’t you? Pick up your Bible and turn to Matthew 22:1-14. (Yes, there’s the regular link. I know some of you really don’t like to pick up a Bible. I make it easy for you.)

Have you heard that story before? I see two or three applications, but the one I want to write about today addresses those who believe 1) there is no God – thus, no hell; 2) there is a God – and everyone goes to heaven; 3) there is a God – who sends people to hell.

The Bible teaches heaven and hell. The Bible teaches those who die go to one or the other. The Bible teaches how we get to where we are going.

The Bible teaches why God created hell:

. . . Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels: (Matthew 25:41 KJV)

Hell was not created for humanity. It was created for the angels that did not wish to be in His presence. There are humans who do not wish to be in His presence, either. They have turned down His invitation.

I’ve known one or two that specifically denied the existence of a supreme being. Yet, when they passed, their friends said, “They’ve gone to a better place.” Heard that on television recently. “He’s in a better place.” I have not found a definition regarding this better place – unless it comes from a person who believes all are going to heaven. Unfortunately, no religion has ever promised that.

Got sends out invitations:

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. (John 3:16-18 KJV)

God does not send people to hell. They simply turned down His invitation to be in His presence. Why would He force them to spend eternity with Him when they turned down every invitation He sent?

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