Jesus – Don’t Leave This World Without Him

I recently observed a bumper sticker that caught my attention. It read:

JESUS – DON’T LEAVE THIS WORLD WITHOUT HIM

After a light moment and a chuckle, the gravity of the statement captured my thoughts. What a chilling thing to contemplate! The scriptures speak to the unenviable situation of passing from this life without being saved. To enter eternity without a personal relationship with Jesus as Savior is tragedy without remedy.

Solomon speaks of such a situation, “Therefore shall his calamity come suddenly; suddenly shall he be broken without remedy (Pro.6:15).”

Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me (John 14:6).”  Paul tells us in Acts 4:12, “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven, whereby we must be saved.” Paul writes these words to the Corinthian Church, “For other foundation can no man lay than is laid, which is Jesus Christ (1 Co. 3:11).” 

In the later days of His ministry, Jesus gave an account of a man that died and went to hell. In torment, he pleaded for a beggar, who had died and gone to heaven, to be allowed to dip his finger in water and cool his tongue, because he was torment in the flames. Luke records these words from Jesus to the man, “…between us and you there is a great gulf fixed: so that they which would pass from hence to you cannot; neither can they pass to us, that would come thence (Luke 16:26).” 

JESUS – DON’T LEAVE THIS WORLD WITHOUT HIM

~ Brother Roy

Beneficiaries and Stewards

to whom much is givenI love Sunday School! I have loved Sunday School from my earliest memories. The images of Bible characters that my teachers painted still live in my mind. Things I learned in Sunday School have had a profound influence on my preaching.

This affection continues to this day. I live in a community that boasts an outstanding Christian university and one of the largest seminaries in the United States. I have worked with and beside many great teachers. I am now privileged to sit under the teaching of one of the finest Sunday School teachers I have ever known. John is a bank administrator by training and career employment, but I believe he is called of God to teach Sunday School.

Recently John was teaching from the Book of Acts. The material was well-researched and effectively presented. Many statements were well worth remembering, however one statement really caught my attention. Although the statement was a simple declaration of a familiar Biblical truth, it had a new and profound impact on me.

Near the end of the class, John said, “We are all here today as beneficiaries of the Great Commission, and we are stewards of it.” As this truism sunk in, I felt both joy and conviction. I experienced joy in knowing that my Sunday School teachers, ministers, Christian friends, and especially my wife, had cared enough to see that I was a beneficiary of God’s grace.  I sensed conviction in that I had not always been as faithful a steward as I should have been.

We need to live with the Great Commission in mind. We need to ponder its relevance to us and to those around us.   As beneficiaries, we need to be deeply thankfully to those who responded to Christ’s charge and carried the gospel to us.  As believers, we must be stewards of the gospel. We must accept the responsibility of sharing the gospel that others brought to us. “For everyone to whom much is given, from him much will be required; and to whom much has been committed, of him they will ask the more” (Luke 12:48). We can do no greater good than to carry forward the mandate of Christ. “Therefore, to him who knows to do good and does not do it, to him it is sin” (James 4:17).

In a time when Sunday School attendance is alarmingly low, there seems to be a corresponding lack of spiritual knowledge and commitment to advancing the gospel message. Are you attending your local church Sunday School? Are you preparing yourself to be a good steward of the Great Commission? For the sake of Christ and for your own sake, be a steward as well as a beneficiary. “Freely you have received, freely give” (Matt. 10:8).

~ Brother Roy

Grits and Grace

grits-with-butterRecently, I came across an interesting anecdote. As the account goes, a traveler from the northeast was driving through L.A. (Lower Alabama). He stopped in a small town restaurant to get something to eat. He ordered a sandwich and coffee. When the waitress brought the sandwich it was accompanied by a large order of grits. The man spoke emphatically to the waitress, “I didn’t order grits, and I’m not paying for the grits!”  The smiling waitress responded with southern charm, “Down here you don’t order grits, and you don’t pay for the grits – you just get ‘em.” 

It’s that way with God’s grace. You don’t order grace, and you can’t pay for grace. It is freely given by our loving heavenly Father. We are “justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Jesus Christ” (Rom. 3:24). Hear again the wonderful word of Paul recorded in Ephesians 2:8: “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is a gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.” 

How beautiful are the words of the old hymn Grace Greater Than My Sin: “Marvelous, infinite, matchless grace, Freely bestowed on all who believe; All who are longing to see His face, Will you this moment His grace receive? 

Prayer for the day: Dear Lord, thank you for grace. Your grace is undeserved and unmerited but freely given. We gratefully receive your grace this day.

~ Brother Roy