Or do you not know that wrongdoers will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor men who have sex with men nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. - 1 Cor 6
Those who are victorious will inherit all this, and I will be their God and they will be my children. But the cowardly, the unbelieving, the vile, the murderers, the sexually immoral, those who practice magic arts, the idolaters and all liars—they will be consigned to the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second death" - Rev 21
Outside are the dogs, those who practice magic arts, the sexually immoral, the murderers, the idolaters and everyone who loves and practices falsehood.- Rev 22
That's quite a list.
Yet if you talk to anyone off the street they might tell you that they're going to heaven because they're a good person. It's pouring into the church with people that if they haven't out right endorsed certain sins as acceptable, they don't have the strength in their convictions to speak against them. When I look at this list, I know there are things that I need to change and that there are more than one thing that could bar me from heaven. I'm holding to God's grace as I work on them, but I also know that it's important that they be worked on. I have evidence of the working of God's Spirit in my life as when they heave their insults and they pour out the hatred, I'm slightly less quick to anger than I used to be. I still have a ways to go.
In the past week I have been told that I am not a believer because I quoted Leviticus 11 in regards to a cheese stuffed lobster carcass. I was told that it was judgment and these "other believers" said that I was going to burn in hell and wasn't following God because he said " judge not". Never mind the part where he says to judge with righteous judgment or the fact that in the context of what I was speaking about, I've removed the log from my eye and am able to speak of the speck in others in that regard.
I was also treated to a fury of insults ranging from very light to quite vulgar because I had the audacity to say that homosexuality isn't an identity, it's a sin. I was called a bigot and was told that I was filled with hate, even though I stated that I am quite tolerant of those who struggle (or don't even struggle) with homosexuality. I stated one biblical truth, cited one scripture, and that was enough to illicit a heinous response.
One of the things that stands out to me louder than the rest is cowardly. I often wonder about how many that encompasses. I know in our culture we're conditioned to not offend others with beliefs and that Christianity is offensive to the culture. In the scripture we're taught that to have friendship with the world is to be an enemy with God
"You adulterous people, don’t you know that friendship with the world means enmity against God? Therefore, anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God"- James 4
Yet, we go out of our way to not really teach or preach the Truth, but kinda poke at it with a stick with tracts or neck ties with scriptures on them. Cowardly. Many of us are too timid to pray in public. Why? Why would we be so self conscious about speaking aloud to the God that gave us life and redeems us from our own lusts and selfish destructive ways?
A.W. Tozer has a line that says “
We say we love God but we don't even keep the Sabbath, which is by design a day off to hang out with God and love Him, given to us as a gift. We wont even stand up to ourselves... but what are we supposed to do with the world starts getting really bad?
But realize this, that in the last days difficult times will come. 2 For men will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, revilers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful,unholy, 3 unloving, irreconcilable, malicious gossips, without self-control, brutal, haters of good, 4 treacherous, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, 5 holding to a form of godliness, although they have denied its power; Avoid such men as these.- 2 Tim 3
Would you hold up in China where there are raids on Christians for being believers?
Would you lay down your life for the love of God and your faith?
... how are we ever going to get to those places when we refuse to be obedient in the small things as not sticking some gross abomination in our face and eating it?