Thursday, December 4, 2014

A Christmas Gift

It is almost two thousand years since that night when the shepherds on the plains of Bethlehem received from the angel the announcement of Christ's birth, "Unto you is born this day a SAVIOR, which is Christ the Lord," Luke 2:11.  That One Whose birth was heralded by angels is the same One Who, thirty-three years later, hung on a cross at Calvary, taunted by men, dying in your guilty place, bearing the penalty for your sins.  It was His death, not His birth, that made atonement for sin; and He willingly gave His life in exchange for yours.  It is because of His death that God can offer the gift of eternal life.

Will this be another Christmas when, under the form of observing Christ's birthday, you will accept all gifts except that one which cost Him His life, and which, if still refused, will cost YOU the eternal loss of your soul?  Would you refuse from an earthly friend a gift which he had purchased for you with his son's life?  How, then, can you dare to contemplate the day when you must meet God, when you will have to explain why you refused His gift?  "How shall we escape if we neglect so great salvation?" Hebrews 2:3. 

You will make this the happiest Christmas you've ever known if you will accept God's priceless gift by simply believing that when the Lord Jesus Christ died at Calvary it was in your place, for your sins.  THE WAGES OF SIN IS DEATH.  THE GIFT OF GOD IS ETERNAL LIFE.  You MUST choose one; and by refusing the gift of life you are choosing the wages of sin - DEATH

by Jim Melough

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

An Overturned Truck

One morning some years ago as I traveled on the Connecticut Turnpike I passed an overturned truck blocking all three lanes on the opposite side of the highway.  In a little while I passed the long lines of stationery vehicles stopped by the accident, and began to meet speeding traffic, the drivers unaware that in a few minutes they too would be brought to a standstill.

That highway scene reminded me of the roadway of life, and God's warning, "Boast not thyself of tomorrow, for thou knowest not what a day may bring forth," Pro.27:1.  I've often wondered how many of the thousands affected by that accident saw it as a reminder that, "God speaketh once, yea twice, yet man percieveth it not," Job 33:14.

This may be read by someone who has had the experience of having his normal way of life suddenly interrupted by accident or illness, the death of a loved one, loss of a job, etc.  Have you viewed it with irritable impatience as thousands of drivers viewed that accident?  Have you seen it simply as an unwelcome interruption of your normal lifestyle?  Has it occurred to you that it might be God's way of trying to get your attention, so that you might consider His question, "What shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?" Mk.8:36; His way of trying to get you to listen to the warning, "Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God," Jn.3:3?

Listen to what is written in Job 33:14-24, "For God speaketh once, yea twice, yet man perceiveth it not....That He may withdraw man from his purpose....He keepeth back his soul from the pit, and his life from perishing....Yea, his soul draweth near unto the grave, and his life to the destroyers."  But to the man who does hear God's voice in the adverse circumstances,  and who trusts Christ as the Savior Who died in his guilty place,  comes God's assurance, "Deliver him from going down to the pit: I have found a ransom."

As I passed that accident I was reminded of others I'd seen,  some of which had brought an abrupt unexpected end to the life of one or more drivers - a wrecked car marking the end, not only of a journey on the turnpike, but of the journey of life itself.

Suppose one of those events that so unexpectedly spoiled your plans, had instead ended your life, where would your soul be now?  God warns, "Ye MUST be born again."  Have you?  If not, When?  "Behold NOW is the accepted time; NOW is the day of salvation," 2 Cor.6:2.  Trust in Christ NOW, "For thou knowest not what a day may bring forth."  It could bring death, ending for ever your opportunity to save your soul.

Friday, October 3, 2014

Good News for Bad People and Bad News for Good People

First, the good news for bad people:
“Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool,” Isa.1:18.  “Christ died for the ungodly,” Ro.5:6.  “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners,” 1 Tim.1:15.  “For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost,” Lk.19:10.  “This Man (Jesus) receiveth sinners, and eateth with them,” Lk.15:2.  “The Son of man hath power on earth to forgive sins,” Mk.2:10.  “The blood of Jesus Christ... cleanseth us (who trust Him as Savior) from all sin,” 1 Jn.1:7.  “Whosoever believeth in Him (Jesus) shall receive remission of sins,” Acts 10:43.  “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved,” Acts 16:31.  “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,” Jn.3:16.  “Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ,” Ro.5:1.  “For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.  He that believeth on him (Jesus) is not condemned....He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life ....”Jn.3:17-18,36.

But now the bad news for good people:

“None is good, save one, that is, God,” Lk.18:19.  “Jews and Gentiles...are all under sin....There is none righteous, no, not one....For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God,” Ro.3:9-11,23.  “We are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags,” Isa.64:6.  You see, the truth is that there are no people good in God’s sight.

Christ warns those who think they are good, “I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance,” Mk.2:17.  “Except ye be shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven,” Mt.18:3.  “Except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish,” Lk.13:3.  “Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God,” Jn.3:3.  “Ye must be born again,” Jn.3:7. “He that believeth not (on Christ as Savior) is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God,” Jn.3:18.  “He that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him,” Jn.3:36.

The only people who are good in God’s sight are those who believe on the Lord Jesus Christ as Savior, for in response to the question, “What shall we do, that we might work the works of God?” Christ replied, “This is the work of God, that ye believe on Him Whom He hath sent,” Jn.6:28-29.  People may be moral, religious, kind, generous, church-goers, Bible-readers, and a host of other things that men count good; but in the end, it is only God’s opinion that matters, and the only person HE counts good is the man or woman who has accepted Christ as Savior.

Where do you stand?  Do you see yourself as so bad that you need a Savior to save you from hell and fit you for heaven?  Then you can be saved, by believing that Christ died in your guilty place for your sins.

Do you see yourself as not completely bad, as having some good about you?  Then you are lost, and cannot be saved until you are willing to abandon the thought that you have even a shred of righteousness.  Remember, God warns, “ALL have sinned, and come short of the glory of God,” Ro.3:23.  “Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God....Ye must be born again,” Jn.3:3,7.

Friday, August 29, 2014


In Mark 16:15 Christ commanded, “Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel,” and many profess to be doing that, but it seems there are almost as many gospels as there are preachers, which prompts the question, What is the Gospel?

First, let’s note what it is not.  It is not an invitation to join a church, reform, read the Bible, pray, give money, do good, etc.

Much of what purports to be the Gospel promises that if you “receive Jesus” by believing what is written about Him, it will transform your life.  But neither is this the Biblical Gospel. The Gospel is not the panacea for life’s troubles, Christ Himself warning believers, In the world ye shall have tribulation (Jn 16:33).

What, then, is the Gospel?  It is God’s warning that all men are born sinners (Ro 3:23), who can be saved from hell and fitted for heaven only when they accept that indictment, confess themselves sinners, and believe that when Christ died on the cross it was as their Substitute, for their sins. The Gospel has to do with the salvation of the soul from hell, not improvement of life on earth.

We may believe all that is written about Christ, but if we fail to believe also what God has written about us, i.e., that “All have sinned,” we will enter hell, not heaven, at death.

“He that believeth on him (Christ) is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already (Jn 3:18).

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

The Rich Man and Lazarus

In Luke 16 we read of a rich man, and of Lazarus, a beggar who ate the scraps from his table; but the passage from time to eternity brought a dramatic change.  Lazarus had comfort; the rich man, misery, so that he cried, “Send Lazarus that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame” (Lk 16:24).

What made the difference?  Faith in Christ!  Faith takes men to heaven; lack of faith, to hell, “He that believeth on Him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed” (Jn 3:18).

Many, like the rich man, are spiritually bankrupt though they have money; others, like Lazarus, are spiritually rich though they haven’t a cent, for if a man has everything, but not Christ, he has nothing, while he who has nothing but Christ has everything he needs for time and eternity.

Are you reading this with cynical amusement?  Please don’t.  Your own eternal state is portrayed in that of one of these men.  You too must go from time into eternity, to heaven or hell, to blessing or torment.  Which?  You don’t know?  Your very uncertainty is its own answer - you too will be pleading for a drop of water to alleviate your torment; you too will be begging God to send warning to loved ones left on earth.  How do I know?  The believer knows where he is going.  Only the unbeliever is uncertain,  “These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life” (1 Jn 5:13).

Faith in Christ as the One Who died on Calvary’s cross in your place, for your sins, is all you need to be sure of heaven.  Lack of that faith is all you need to be sure of hell and eternal torment.