John 1:12 (NIV)
Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God—
A man had a dream that Christ returned to judge the living and the dead. Those who confessed Jesus as their Lord and Savior were rewarded with eternal life. Those who rejected Him were justly condemned to Hell.
As the last name of the righteous was called out, a young man rushed forward to inquire why his name was not included.
"But Jesus!" he cried, "Why wasn't my name called? I've lead a good life and always tried to help my fellow man!"
A gentle voice answered, "Yes, you have done many good works."
"And what about Church?" asked the young man, "I often visited many types of churches! I sang the songs, recited the words, knelt when I was to, and donated a portion of my income!"
Again the soft voice responded, "Yes, I remember seeing you there."
Increasingly frustrated, the young man continued, "I never did drugs. I rarely drank, tried not to swear and never hit a woman! Tell me...what have I done to deserve this horrible fate?"
"You hated My Son and you hated Me," said another voice.
"How can you say that?" cried out the young man, tears streaming down the side of his face.
Again, the bold voice answered, "Throughout your life, I kept knocking, yet you refused to answer. The messengers I sent to teach and warn you were mocked or ignored. You chose to believe the false dictate of the world that there are many paths to Me. Yet I, in My Written Word, and My messengers, repeatedly told you there is but ONE way to Me - that is, through my Son Jesus Christ. You did not seek the truth, but only relied on your own righteousness. The truth was continuously placed before you, but you did not partake of it. You hated My truth, Me, and My Son."
Through the flood of tears, the man’s face turned red with anger, "What type of God are you? A loving God would not condemn anyone to Hell!"
"My son," said the deep voice, "It is My desire that all are saved. I have laid out a great feast before men, but many have rejected My invitation. You see, I have not turned my back on them. They have turned their back on Me. I did not choose this terrible fate for you... you chose it for yourself."
The young man could say nothing more because he knew deep in his heart God was right. And so, he turned his back on God for one last time and slowly walked toward the remainder of the crowd that was crying, screaming and cursing His name.
The young man woke up from his dream. Thankfully for him, he learned from his dream and invited Christ into his life that same day.
I wonder how many more will continue to ignore God's many efforts to reach them.
Dear Lord, we pray for those that have turned their back on You. Help us be the one that shows them Your amazing love so that they may come to You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.