A lady meets an old friend of hers on the street and asks how he’s doing. He tells her that he’s doing okay but that his church is looking for a new pastor.
“But why?” the old lady asks.
“Our pastor, all he talks about is hell. We’re just tired of listening to him.”
They parted ways.
A couple of weeks later they meet again. The old lady asks the man if they found a new pastor yet.
“Why yes we have. We love him and think he’s great,” was his reply.
“What does he talk about?” asked the curious old lady.
“Hell,” was his response.
Surprised, the old lady inquired, “But, I thought you said you were looking for a new pastor because all the old pastor talked about was hell. Now your new pastor talks about hell, and you’re happy. Why?”
“Simple,” he explained. “Our old pastor talked about hell as if he were glad people were going. He would spend time telling us who was going, and seemed to take glee in the thought of people being eternally separated from God. Our new pastor talks about hell, but his heart is that no one should go. He offers up Him who gave His life to make us acceptable to God. He shares the free gift of salvation that’s found only in Jesus the Christ, the Son of the living God. He’s grieved by those that don’t accept Him, and rejoices for all who freely accept this most precious Gift that God has freely offered to us.”
A gift is only ours when we accept it. If we have to earn it, it’s not a gift, it’s a payment. We could never earn it.
Heaven is open for “all who call upon the name of the Lord, who believe on His name.” Read the whole book of John for some insight into that. Read Romans for a glimpse of who is righteous…hint, there are none righteous, no not one.
God takes no pleasure in the death of the wicked. Ezekiel 33:11
Do not rejoice when your enemy falls, And do not let your heart be glad when he stumbles;
The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance. 2 Pet 3:9
Love your enemies.
Peace and Love,
Blessings and Grace,