But when we die we will be face-to-face with Christ, the One who experienced death once for all to bear the sins of many! And now to those who eagerly await him, he will appear a second time; not to deal with sin, but to bring us the fullness of salvation. (Hebrews 9:28 TPT)
“JESUS WILL ARRIVE IN 3 DAYS” displayed on my vacation rental manager app. I smiled. I never had a guest with the first name Jesus before. The message sparked my imagination.
What would I do if I knew Jesus Christ, my Savior, was returning in three days? [Please forgive the break from reality – I know none of us will know ahead of time (Matthew 24:36).]
Imagine with me — Jesus arrives in 3 days. My first reaction is joy. I’m going home. I will be with Jesus, my closest friend! God’s son who suffered torture and death to bear the penalty for my rebellious sinful life is coming to get me. The faithful one who stayed with me in times of deep sorrow, who carried my burdens and changed my life for the better is on his way. I will be taken away from this place riddled with death, hatred, evil, and unfairness. The epic day, the huge change in life as we know it, is happening in three days.
Amid all my excited visions of trumpets blasting, the sky filled with angels, and praises to the Lord Jesus coming from all those around me who are being drawn to him, I hit a moment of despair.
What about those who never believed they were sinners? Those who never reconciled with God the Father? I know some of them. I love them. Their future will be much different. They will receive God’s judgment for their sins. They didn’t believe the Father loves them. They only believed what they thought was right. They never humbled themselves to God and admitted they had sinned against the great I AM. They thought it was all foolishness. They didn’t believe they needed forgiveness or mercy. And now, in three days, their souls will reap what they’ve sown. They will be judged. And the prince of this world, Satan, will laugh at them and torture them forever … there will be screaming and crying and begging for mercy.
My spirit grieves for them. All of a sudden, I’m not elated anymore. Time’s up. The judgment is coming. In three days.
It’s not enough time. I don’t want anyone to spend eternity separated from Father God. And, the truth is, it could be today.
Lord, please help us to remember those who are lost and spend the rest of our time here doing all we can to be vessels that you will use to build your kingdom. Help us to live so surrendered to you that others want to know you because they are attracted to the light of your great love. The signs are everywhere that your return is soon. Please pour out your spirit. Have mercy on us, oh Lord.
Scriptures on this topic: Romans 2:5-7, Romans 3:23, Matthew 25:1-46, Mark 9:42-50, Matthew 8:11-12, Matthew 16:27, John 14:3, Revelation 22:12-13
Copyright © Beth Patch, used with permission.