Facing Forever

Yesterday, I preached from Luke 16:19-31. Here is the parable of The Rich Man and Lazarus. I encourage you to take a moment to read this short story.

At the risk of oversimplifying the weighty matters of eternity, consider these 5 simple truths that this parable makes.

1. We are all going to die.

The rich die. The poor die. Americans die. Africans die. Asians dies. We all die. We can try to live longer, but we are going to die. You don’t really need any elaboration or evidence from me, you know this by your own experience.

2. When we die, we will either go to Heaven or Hell.

Some want to believe just in Heaven. I’ve met a person or two that want to believe just in Hell. Many want to believe in neither. “When you die, you die” is their motto. But, both Heaven and Hell are real. Jesus spoke about both. So, if He has lied here, He has lied everywhere.

3. Once we die, the place of our eternal destiny is fixed forever.

There is no changing our forever place once we go.

4. Our eternal place is determined while we live.

Consider these Scriptures:

For God loved the world in this way: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16

Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. John 14:6

Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me, even if he dies, will live. 26 Everyone who lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?” John 11:25-26

If you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. Romans 10:9

And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. 12 The one who has the Son has life. The one who does not have the Son of God does not have life. 13 I have written these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life. 1 John 5:11-13

You will notice in all of these Scriptures that this is not about what we do, but about believing in Jesus, trusting in Him as the One who is our Savior.

5. We don’t want anyone to go to Hell.

Once we have decided that Jesus is the only way to Heaven, we have to be about the assignment of helping others to know that.

Once reconciled, we are to enter the ministry of reconciliation.

20 Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, since God is making his appeal through us. We plead on Christ’s behalf: “Be reconciled to God.” 21 He made the one who did not know sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. 2 Corinthians 5:20-21

Have you made your decision? This is the most important decision you will ever make? Then, once you have made that decision, be on mission to help others to find Christ and in finding Christ, find eternal life.

(This post is based on the message “Facing Forever” which you can watch at fbclaf.org/video)