Fear God, who has the power to kill you and then throw you into hell. Yes, he’s the one to fear.
Luke 12:5 (NLT)
Aren’t these some of Jesus’ most encouraging words?
I grew up hearing about hell as a very real, scary, painful, forever place and I did not want to be there. So I chose the way out and avoided destruction by following Jesus.
I didn’t love Jesus, nor did I feel loved by Him. But I selfishly wanted what He had to give: a ticket to heaven. I began doing what I thought God required: attending every church event, memorizing Bible verses handwritten on index cards, and kneeling
bedside in prayer.
As time went on, my enthusiasm faded. It was too hard and it didn’t mean much. I avoided thinking about God, Jesus and hell for the next 25 years. With my questionable behavior, I figured I was doomed. Then my nerdy curiosity (or was it God?) led me to join the Disciple Bible study.
God was wooing me back.
This time, my ticket to heaven came bundled with helpful guidance, explanation and discussion about the Bible which helped reshape my angry, judgmental, ‘damning me to hell’ image of God. I began to see God’s true character and to know that He loved me. And I began to love God.
In His own words, God revealed the life He wants for me right now, not later in heaven and certainly not hell. The Disciple Bible study was the beginning of the best part of my life, thank God!
Jesus is more than a ticket to heaven. (tweet this)
Does your picture of God match His self portrait? How do you know?