Tuesday, September 27, 2016
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It's always hard to lose someone you love. It's especially hard when it's a child. I had friends who lost their precious granddaughter, Amy. Two years old; went to sleep with a little cold and a little fever. By the end of the night, Amy was gone from a cause, well it was still a medical mystery. As I talked with the family at the visitation, of course there was deep grief, but there was also a little comfort from something beautiful that happened right before Amy went to sleep that night. Her mother began singing "Jesus Loves Me" to her and little Amy sang along with her. Her last words, "Jesus loves me, this I know." And then she was with Him.
I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "Eternity Insurance."
The way little Amy went into eternity is a wonderful way for any of us to go into eternity – knowing Jesus loves us and that we will be with Him forever. We all have our appointment to keep with God, and what happens there has everything to do with our response to that love. A love that little children sometimes seem to understand best.
Maybe that's why, according to our word for today from the Word of God in Matthew 18, beginning at verse 2, "Jesus called a little child and had him stand among them. And He said: 'I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.'"
When you put that in the context of a little two-year-old's simple trust in the love of Jesus, you see some of what Jesus is trying to say here. We've got all our sophistication, our questions, our doubts, our analysis, our hardness, and our pride. You and I don't want to believe that we can't earn heaven with our goodness, that all we can do is put all our trust in the Savior who died to remove the death penalty for our sin. No, no. We're strong, we're self-reliant, we're smart, we can figure things out, we can handle things, we can fix things. We struggle with simply reaching out to Jesus in uncomplicated, uninhibited faith. But there is no other way to, in Jesus' words, "enter the kingdom of heaven."
But when our heart beats for the last time, it won't matter what degrees or positions we held, or how many people we know, or what religion we were, or what nice things they said about us at our funeral. All that will matter is whether or not you have grabbed the nail-scarred hand of Jesus Christ to forgive your sin and take you to His heaven.
Grabbing a hand in total trust is something a child totally understands and something we grown-up children need to understand again. Because if you haven't trusted Jesus to be your personal Savior from your personal sin, you don't stand a chance in eternity. He's the only One who could forgive and erase what will keep you out of heaven – your sin and its death penalty. He's the only One who died that death penalty for you on the cross so you don't have to.
You need to face eternity knowing that Jesus loves you and that you have responded to that love. You don't want to enter eternity, you don't want to face Jesus, knowing you've neglected or rejected His love for you poured out on His cross.
Have you ever grabbed Jesus' hand in total trust to say, "Jesus, you're my only hope of being rescued from my sin"? If not, why would you risk another day without Him? Why would you live another day outside His love? Tell Him, "Jesus, I'm yours" right where you are today.
I invite you to our website, because it's there simply to help you be sure you actually have begun this relationship with the only One who can rescue you from your sin. It's ANewStory.com. Would you go there?
So, this little girl enters eternity, knowing that Jesus loves her and showing you and me the love we so desperately need. "Jesus loves me, this I know."