John 3:16, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
I was saddened to read in the local news today about an 18 year old young man who drowned four days ago, at the popular Marbo Cave on Guam. His name was Ryo Eda, originally from Hawaii. He just graduated a couple weeks ago from Harvest Baptist Academy on Guam. My sympathies go out to the family. Just last week in southern Indiana, an 11 year old Girl Scout named Isabelle Meyer was killed when a 40 foot tree fell on her while hiking. It had been raining a lot in recent weeks, softening the soil, which caused the tree to topple over. That is tragic. These young people will never know the joy of parenting, or being a grandparent. It's not fair! Life is not fair. Ecclesiastes 9:11, “I returned, and saw under the sun, that the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, neither yet bread to the wise, nor yet riches to men of understanding, nor yet favour to men of skill; but time and chance happeneth to them all.” Sometimes accidents just do happen.
My neck hurts all the time, from getting hit from the rear by a church bus in 1992. The only thing that kept my neck from breaking, was that my seat broke instead, but my neck was permanently misaligned and damaged, which led to Cervical Degenerative Disk Disease (stenosis and radiculopathy) years later in 2004. I also fell down a 15 foot slide at work in 2005, which complicated my injury. I underwent two major neck surgeries in 2009 and 2010, which made me worse. I survive in misery all the time, thankful for my pain medications which provide some relief.
Yet, when I think about those two unfortunate young people, who died so early in life, I praise God for the blessings that I have, and use their deaths to compel me to work even harder to preach the Gospel, to make a difference for Jesus Christ while I still can. My best friend while growing up committed suicide with his father's shotgun at only age 22. I wept much at his funeral, placing my soulwinning New Testament into his coffin. I am now 53. I can think back with some close brushes with death myself that I have had in life.
I had a car fall on me years ago, and if it weren't for a black man walking down the street at just the right time, who heard my cries for help trapped under a Ford Tornado, I wouldn't be here today. That accident happened in the year 1993. I was laying on a creeper, changing a starter. I jacked the car up and placed jack stands under the car, but I didn't lower the car's weight onto the stands. My creeper caught a pebble under the wheel, and I couldn't roll, so like an idiot I pulled on the car to overcome the resistance so I could roll, and in so doing pulled the car down on me. The jack stands toppled over, and the jack. It was a front-wheel-drive, so the full weight of the heavy engine was upon me, and I was still laying on my creeper.
I was unable to breathe. I eerily screamed, “Help me, please help me, someone help me, I'm trapped!” A black man came over, with his hands trembling, and with mere gasps of remaining air, I told him how to jack the car up. I went to the hospital. My entire chest was black, blue and yellow, but no ribs were broken. I wept over the days to follow from the intense pain, having to roll just to get out of bed. I barely escaped death that day! To this day I won't get under a car! I had nightmares for years to follow. I love that black man, but don't know who he is. I hope to meet him in Heaven. If he is there, all my rewards in Heaven are his too! He can have anything and everything in my home!
I owe my life and ministry to him. Yet, as saints we can say with the apostle Paul in Philippians 1:21, “For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.” God looks at death differently than we do. In God's sight, the death of a believer is a precious thing, even though we perceive it as a tragedy. Psalms 116:15, “Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of his saints.” Whether you are young or old, bond or free, rich or poor, faithful or unfaithful, the sight of every saint is precious in God's sight.
I could share several other near misses with death. I almost got hit by a speeding car once, as a teenager in Geneva, Illinois. I used to ride as fast as I could down hills, with no thought of cars at the intersection. That was pretty stupid. I once fell backwards from a 25 foot high hole in a roof being repaired. I didn't watch where I was going and fell backwards. I would have fallen backward 25 feet down onto the concrete below, but a half-sawn 2 x 12 board saved my life. My point is that death can happen at any time, without warning! Are you ready to die dear reader? Have you been born-again?
I have some wonderful news dear friend—you can live forever! I was amazed when I researched the strange subject of cryonics. I'll let you read the article I just linked to, so I don't need to explain how it works. Basically people pay a lot of money to have their bodies frozen in liquid nitrogen (at 320 degrees below zero Fahrenheit) when they die, in hope of one day being revived by manmade science, so they can live forever. That is ridiculous! I rejoiced in my heart after studying about cryonics, realizing that I already have eternal life promised to me by God, through faith in His only begotten Son! John 6:47, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life.” That is awesome! Titus 1:2, “In hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began;” I am so glad to be a born-again Christian, I have God's promise of eternal life:
Philippians 3:20-21, “For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ: Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself.”Someday every believer will receive a new body from God, fashioned like unto the Lord's perfect body. I sometimes cannot believe that I am one of the few who have been saved. God didn't choose me to be saved, I chose to trust Jesus Christ, and on that basis alone God has chosen me as His elect. We don't believe because God chose us, God chose us because we believe. The world is filled with blinded religious people. They have been deceived by the Devil to live the Christian life without ever being born-again. Religion is the worst thing that ever happened to this world.
If you don't know for certain that you are saved, I will tell you now. The Holy Bible declares that you are a sinner (and so am I). We are guilty of violating God's commandments. Romans 3:10-23 describes the sinful condition of mankind. Because of our sins we deserve to be punished in Hell forever (Romans 6:23). The wages of sin is death the Bible says. Some people don't understand that, because we are not as perfect and holy as God. To get to Heaven, you must be absolutely perfect, not even one sin (James 2:10). That is why we cannot save ourselves! Jesus is perfect, so if we accept His sacrifice on the cross as payment for our sins, then God will impute (credit) Christ's righteousness to us by faith (Romans 4:5-6 - All quotes are only from the inspired King James Bible).
The 'GOOD NEWS' (GOSPEL) is that God loved us so much, that He sent His only begotten Son, Jesus, to die on the cross to pay for our sins. Jesus paid a debt He did not owe, because we owed a debt we could not pay (2nd Corinthians 5:21). Jesus DIED on the cross, was BURIED, and physically RESURRECTED after three days (1st Corinthians 15:1-4). This is the Gospel, by which we are saved if we believe. Romans 1:16, “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.” 1st Corinthians 1:21, “For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe.”
All that God requires is for you to acknowledge yourself as a needy sinner (Romans 3:19-20; 1st John 1:8-10). You need the Savior! If you'd like to have eternal life, then simply by faith receive Christ's sacrifice on the cross as payment for your sins, believing that He is risen from the dead, and you are saved. God can read your mind. The very moment that God sees you've placed your trust in His only begotten Son, He saves you forever! 1st John 5:20, “And we know that the Son of God is come, and hath given us an understanding, that we may know him that is true, and we are in him that is true, even in his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God, and eternal life.” If you have Jesus Christ as your Savior, you have eternal life. JESUS IS ETERNAL LIFE!!! Eternal life is eternal security!!! If you have Jesus as your Savior, you are saved forever and eternally secure. Once saved, always saved!!! Please trust Christ now as your personal Savior.