The value of our great salvation – Part 2
How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation; which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed unto us by them that heard him.” If we neglect, reject or trifle with the offer of so great a salvation, we set ourselves up for only one outcome: the anger of God. In such a situation, it would be impossible to escape: (1) Divine judgment. God has done His part by giving us His only begotten Son to die an agonising death on the cross for our salvation.
Divine judgment awaits anyone who neglects such sacrifice. (2) The wrath of God. Rejecting God’s Son, the only source of salvation, will bring God’s fury on the sinner. (3) Eternal suffering. (4) Everlasting punishment. The punishment of our sin was so great. But Jesus bore our punishment on the cross. (5) Endless torment. The people who by choice prefer Satan to the Saviour, darkness to light, evil to righteousness cannot escape the danger of endless torment. (6) Damnation of hell. (7) Pain – the pain of no light, water, peace, love, hope, friend and relief in hell forever. The consequences of neglecting God’s offer of salvation is presented to all today, so that they will fear and repent of all their sins. God has given us the assurance “that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved” (Acts 2:21).
There are fearful consequences for anyone that rejects or neglects God’s warning. Those who neglected Lot’s warning perished in the fire that God rained on Sodom and Gomorrah. Similar fate awaits unrepentant sinners at the end of time. Therefore, the Church must awake to its responsibility and warn sinners about the impending judgment, especially as we see the signs of the end being fulfilled. We should tell them about the imminent return of our Lord Jesus Christ to take His people home.
We should also let them know that that event, also known as the rapture, will usher in a period of great tribulation – a time of unprecedented suffering on sinners and careless believers who will miss the rapture. We cannot afford to be indifferent or careless like Lot’s wife, who saw the angels of God, heard their words yet perished. As beneficiaries of God’s grace, we should arise and persuade sinners to confess their sins and accept Jesus as Lord and Saviour, while backsliders should pray for restoration. God does not want anything – career, job, business, time, etc. – to deprive us of this responsibility to warn sinners to escape for their lives.
God wants us to show enough concern for our neighbours and rescue them from eternal punishment in hell. The people we interact with at home, school, business or workplace should be shown the way of salvation. The Lord is in need of faithful men and women, who will reach sinners with the gospel message. Love for our neighbours, passion and concern in our hearts will make us sacrifice anything in order to rescue them from eternal damnation.
But “If thou forbear to deliver them that are drawn unto death, and those that are ready to be slain; If thou sayest, Behold, we knew it not; doth not he that pondereth the heart consider it? And he that keepeth thy soul, doth not he know it? And shall not he render to every man according to his works?” The love of God shed abroad in our hearts should compel us to preach the gospel to our neighbours. God will hold us responsible if we fail to show others the way to eternal life. “How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation; which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed unto us by them that heard him.”
Further Reading (King James Version): Hebrews 2:3; Genesis 19:17,26; Jude 5-7; Matthew 23:26-28,33; Deuteronomy 22:5,4; Proverbs 24:11,12; Luke 8:38-40.
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