Two of the Devil's best tools to keep souls from being saved are procrastination and a false sense of security. I'm sure these two things have kept more people out of Heaven than unbelief ever will. To be saved we have to ACT while we have breath and we never know when the last one will come.
After I became a Christian, I called up a friend, more than a thousand miles away, whom I had not heard from in some time. I proceeded to tell him that I had become a Christian and had been saved and indicated that he too should be saved. Sadly though, my friend laughed and responded that he was not aware he needed saving or that there was anything he needed to be saved from. In spite of his mocking attitude I proceeded to share the Gospel with him as much as I could hoping to plant a seed for future germination. Since my friend did not have ears to hear anything about the Bible it was a trying conversation on my part but he remained lighthearted about the matter. Shortly after that conversation this young man was diagnosed with advanced cancer and has long since gone into eternity. I was able to witness to him once more and this time in person, and while he had tears in his eyes, he stubbornly clung to his own understanding and a firm rejection of Jesus Christ. He was clearly terrified and he admitted that he was afraid of dying but said he found comfort in his marijuana, which he reeked of. He believed when he died he would just be dead and never know anything. Like countless others before him he found it more comforting to believe a lie rather than have hope in Christ.
We all have a tomorrow in our future that will never come and we should be prepared.
I believe the devil used the marijuana and pain drugs to keep this young man blinded and to a degree, in a false sense of security thereby keeping him from making any last minute changes in his life or his eternity. It is my hope that he had another opportunity and took advantage of it on his deathbed. Many, if not most of us will never have that last minute chance to make a difference in where we spend eternity. Some of us will be gone in a split second during our day, or in sleep, while the minds of others will be clouded with affliction or medications and we should not forget that procrastination is a dangerous enemy of the soul. We all have a tomorrow in our future that will never come and we should be prepared.
Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away. For that ye ought to say, If the Lord will, we shall live, and do this, or that. ~ James 4:14-15
If we consider our self to be
basically a good person and
doing all right then we see no need to change the course of our life and therefore no perceived need of Christ. It is obvious that with such a mind set we are trusting in our own works and abilities to get us into heaven or wherever we think it is we will go after death. When we are trusting in our self then clearly we are lacking the faith required to believe that Christ is who He states Himself to be. The point is, that any life not submitted to Jesus Christ and without Him in control of that life, is a life without salvation, it is an unsaved soul. Folks, if we do not see our need of being saved, and have not come to that point where we see ourselves in much the same way that God sees us, then it is impossible to become a Christian until those views change. We are all born sinners without hope unless we turn and accept Christ as our Redeemer. This is one reason God allows trouble and heartbreak to come into our lives. For many that is the only way they will ever look outside of them-self for hope and comfort. More people have always been saved during trying circumstances in their life than any other time.
Becoming a Christian is more than
giving up a few things in our life, and more than going to church, and no one was ever born a Christian. Part of becoming a Christian is a willingness to walk away from all that we are and know today, fully accepting God's plan and desires for our life. This is what God requires of us if we are to be saved but increasingly fewer people ever achieve this level of surrender preferring instead to walk in both life styles, which is utterly impossible to do and be successful in either.
No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon. ~ Matthew 6:24
Repeatedly we read and hear that to DO anything regarding the Christian behavior or walk is legalism, that such a person is not trusting in the shed blood of Christ and His Grace. Friends, there is a difference in just looking at a glass of water and in drinking it. Grace placed the glass of water on the table. Now we can stand there and look at it while the sun bakes our brain and we fall over dead. In that case the water does us no good whatsoever even though we believed it could save us. Or if we want to benefit from that water, we must do something! Our heart, our brain screams for us to reach out and grasp the glass! Then lift it to our parched lips and drink! We had faith that the water would quench our thirst and restore life to starving body cells, but that faith without the work of acquiring and consuming the water was a dead faith and would leave us equally dead. Saving faith requires action on our part, so don’t be deceived by those who would have us
Therefore we ought to give the more earnest heed to the things which we have heard, lest at any time we should let them slip. For if the word spoken by angels was stedfast, and every transgression and disobedience received a just recompence of reward; How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation; which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed unto us by them that heard him. ~ Hebrews 2:1-3
Only after conversion can we truly see what we were blind to in our unsaved condition. As all of us should do, we find that we are thanking God for delivering us from the very things we cherished and held tightly to in our former sinful life and mind set. God spoke to us in His Word, when He said:
...behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation. ~ 2 Corinthians 6:2b
Following is a Biblical guideline to surrendering and submitting to Jesus Christ, the only one who can save souls from eternal torment and separation from God. Remember, Salvation, saving Salvation is more than a quick heartless prayer. Sometimes we must grapple with God for days, even months before He has our heart in the place where we can truly surrender. I tell you today as Paul told the early Christians two thousand years ago;
Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. ~ Philippians 2:12
And Jesus answered him, saying, It is written, That man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God. For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast. For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure. Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. ~ Luke 4:4; Ephesians 2:8-9; Philippians 2:13; 2 Corinthians 5:17