November 12, 2019
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My son-in-law had to fight a battle that's all too familiar to frequent flyers - it's called Baggage Wars. That's when your suitcase goes somewhere other than where you're going. He fought a four-week battle, calling almost daily to see if the airline had located a missing bag with some pretty valuable items in it. Hooray! They finally found it! It had been checked to Chicago. Of course, it went to Portland, Oregon. It was checked on one airline and ended up tagged by a different airline. It started with his name on it, and it ended up with someone else's name on it. I don't know how this happened. Somehow his valuables did not end up where he thought they would. They were tagged for another destination.
I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "Your Destination Tag."
There's no destination more important for you or me than the place where we're going to spend forever. Usually, we don't think about it much; mostly when our health is in question, or our safety, or we have a close call, or when someone's death makes us confront our own mortality. Sometimes we spend more time thinking about this year's vacation destination than our eternal destination, but forever is a long time. We need to know what our final destination tag says.
According to the Bible, some people are going to be tragically surprised by where they end up. Our word for today from the Word of God, Proverbs 16:25, says, "There is a way that seems right to a man, but in the end it leads to death." In one survey, the vast majority of Americans thought they would go to heaven when they die, but you know, you can only get there God's way. Any other way, however sincerely you believe in it, will not get you into God's heaven.
Referring to Jesus with His title as the Son of God, John 3:36 clarifies how to be sure God's destination tag on you says "heaven." Here's what the Bible says: "Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God's wrath abides on him." Why is this? Because no one can get into God's heaven with their sin unforgiven, and our sin carries an eternal death penalty. A death penalty can only be paid by someone dying.
And when it comes to your sin and mine, someone did. His name is Jesus...and only Jesus. In God's own words, "He loved us and sent His Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins" (1 John 4:10). Your sin will keep you out of heaven. Jesus died to pay for that sin so you don't have to. Your eternal destination hinges on whether or not there has ever been a time when you told Jesus, "You are my only hope of being forgiven. You're my only hope of going to heaven, and I'm Yours, Jesus." Only the one who died and paid for your sin could forgive your sin. No one else could do that. He's the only one who paid the penalty for it. And you know what? Three days later he walked out of his grave under his own power so he could walk into your life today.
If you're depending on anything else, even your religion, even all your Christianity, you won't make it to heaven. But that could change today, and you could know for sure, beginning right now, that you are going to heaven when you die. You tell Jesus you want to begin this life-saving relationship with Him, that you're done running your own life. You're pinning all your hopes on him and that you are His.
A lot of the information that will help you know for sure you belong to him is right in our website. It's set up for you for a day like this, for a time like this when God is speaking to your heart about beginning your relationship with him. The website is ANewStory.com. I urge you to get there as soon as you can today.
Something wonderful happens the moment you give yourself to the Man who died for you. He changes the destination tag on your heart from hell to heaven. That could happen for you this very day.