Why do you think God should let you into Heaven? Do you really think you are good enough? The truth is that most people do think they are good enough.
People compare themselves based on their interactions and experiences with others. Their standard of good is subjective and based on what they observe, and on external behavior. In a general sense, they don’t consider a person’s secret life, thoughts, intents, or attitudes, which exist in a person’s heart. People are offended at the notion of God, who is supposed to be love, sending a basically good person to eternal torment in hell. Many people are angry at God because they cannot reconcile this issue.
Instead they create a God who is only a loving and kind God. They don’t grasp that He is also Holy and He hates sin. God hates sin because he sees the horrible effects of sin on the human race. His desire is to protect and bless us, but our sin limits him at the very least. Since God is just, He must punish us for our sins, just as a good judge in our land must punish the criminal.
The Bible says in Romans 6:23 that the wages we all deserve for our sin is death. God punished Jesus instead of us, because that is how loving He really is!
- Romans 5:8 says, “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”
If we will be truthful, and examine ourselves, we must admit that we all lie, cheat, are selfish, get angry too easily, are hateful, unforgiving, use the name of the Lord in vain, don’t go to Church, don’t read the Bible, don’t feed the poor, and don’t live morally clean lives, as God commanded.
Why should a perfect God allow us access to a perfect place? We would corrupt it like we have done here on the earth. Revelation 21:27 states, “But there shall by no means enter it anythingthat defiles, or causes an abomination or a lie, but only those who are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life.”
The point is that not one of us deserves to go to Heaven.
- Romans 3:12 says, “there is none good, no not one.”
- Job 15:16 says, “man, who is abominable and filthy, who drinks iniquity like water!”
That’s how bad we really are. We drink sin like water. Some still can’t understand why there is a hell, and believe that God is mean for letting someone suffer forever. We need to realize that the God we are accusing of being mean is the same one who sent His Son to suffer horribly on a cross to die in our place in order to keep us out of hell.
He made a way of escape, paid for our sins, and offers us the free gift of eternal life yet we still complain and accuse Him falsely.
- 1 Corinthians 2:14 says, ”But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned”
- 2 Corinthians 4:4, “whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe.”
The reason this doesn’t make sense to some is because the devil has blinded their minds and Romans 1 tells us they push the truth away.
An analogy might help here:
If I gave you a glass of pure, mountain spring water, but placed in it only one drop of sewage, would you drink it? No, you wouldn’t. Even one small iota of sin God will not permit in His presence, as James 2:10 says.
Proverbs 24:9 states that even one foolish thought is a sin. If we commit only one sin, even just a foolish thought, we would not be allowed into heaven. Wow! That’s a pretty high standard.
The reality is that we don’t have just one drop of sewage, we are a glass filled with the sewage.
- Isaiah 64:6, “all our righteousness is as filthy rags.”
We cannot enter heaven the way we are because we are not compatible with a Holy God. Nahum 1:5 states that we would all be consumed in his presence with our sinful nature.
God’s nature is different then ours. He has a Holy nature, and we have a corrupt nature. It’s like this:
If we stuck our hand into the fire to retrieve something, and the fire burns us, we wouldn’t say; why did that fire burn me? That was mean of that fire! No, we wouldn’t say that, because our hand and the fire are not compatible. Neither is a holy God and sinful man compatible. The nature of the fire is to burn, and the nature of God is to consume. We must receive a new nature. The only way God will give us this new nature is if we will trust in what Jesus did for us on the cross, be willing to turn from our sins, and receive Him as our Lord and Savior. Then He graciously gives us a new heart and spirit, which is His nature. Jesus exchanges His right standing with God for our sins, and washes them away.
We also need to realize that hell is so horrible because it is absent from God’s goodness. Good only exists because of God, as Psalms 33:5 and James 1:17 tell us. If you don’t want Him in your life, there is a place prepared without Him or His goodness.
By the way, death does not mean cease to exist. It means separation from God. You are an eternal being and will live forever in one place or another.
Since Jesus paid the penalty of death for us, our part is to turn from a sinful lifestyle, and give our heart and life to Him. If we don’t, then we will pay the price for our sins, which is eternal suffering in hell. Stop complaining that there is only one way to heaven, and be grateful He made a way where there was none. If you want to live at His house, you do it His way! Just make the right choice.
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By Bill Wiese, author of 23 Minutes in Hell