Many preachers in this day and age have given up on the ‘old ideas’ of the total sinfulness of mankind. Theologians call it ‘The total corruption of man’. People are not often told that they are guilty sinners before a Holy God. In fact, such statements would make people cringe and be angry at the speaker. How dare you call someone a sinner? Who made you judge, jury and executioner over people? I have seen people ridicule statements such as these as not being faithful to the teachings of Jesus who called upon people to simply love one another. I have seen people thrown out of WhatsApp groups for being ‘intolerant’. Their only undoing was to speak against things such as nude pics, homosexual marriage, abortion, adultery, fornication, pornography, lying, theft, corruption and blasphemy. It is hard to preach to our generation. It is a stiff-necked generation.
There is, however, one old school preacher, and he speaks today as boldly as ever. He is not popular, though the world is his parish, and he travels over every part of the globe and speaks in every language under the sun. He visits the poor, calls on the rich, and preaches to people of every religion and many of no religion.
He is an eloquent preacher — often stirs feelings which no other preacher could reach and brings tears into eyes that seldom weep. He addresses himself to the conscience and the heart. His arguments none are able to refute, nor is there any heart that has remained completely unmoved by the force of his appeals. Most people hate him, and many are afraid in his presence.
The Preacher’s Name
He is not polite. In fact, he often interrupts in public and breaks in rudely on the private pleasures of life. He frequents homes, offices, markets and the roadsides; he appears among politicians, business executives, and intrudes on fashionable and religious gatherings at inconvenient times. His name is DEATH.
You can’t read or hear the news without noticing that he has a corner in it. You often see his congregations passing to and from the graveyard, or crematorium. Just this week, he took a top business executive in our country for his subject. When a nationally famous individual dies, an entire country is caused to ponder the reality of death. The whole nation is forced to stop right there and think a bit. As the nation grieves and condoles with the family, conversations over the cause of death begin almost immediately. A few will remain intrigued by the cremation process as has been the case for a number of prominent Kenyans lately and will be fixated on conversations around the benefits and appropriateness of the practice. Many will carry on with talk about what needs to be done to effectively combat cancer, which now appears to be the new AIDS, only more mysterious. As others seek the answer to cancer, many more are simply just scared to die.
Only a handful are telling you that soon, that old school preacher Death, will take you for his subject, and in your bereaved family circle and by your graveside he will be preaching to others. Let your heart thank God this moment that you are still alive. Being alive gives you an opportunity to hear his message and seek answers to the questions he poses before it is too late to respond.
His message: You can’t avoid Him (your maker)
You may get rid of the Bible; you may ridicule its teaching; you may despise its warnings; you may reject Jesus Christ as the saviour sent from God. You can get away from preachers of the gospel. You are not compelled to go to church. It is in your power to stop reading this material right at this point. But what will you do with death?
After all, before long, you will die. The Bible says “It is appointed for men to die once, and after this the judgment” (Hebrews 9:27). Isn’t there a reason for death? Is it by accident that a person with such powers has such a feeble end? There is only one answer to these questions. It is in the Bible.”SIN came into the world through one man, and death through sin, so death spread to all people (no one being able to stop it or escape its power), because they all sinned (Romans 5:12). Sin is not simply an ugly word in the Bible; it is our own rebellion against our maker God. “Death spread to all men, because all have sinned” (Romans 5:12). You have sinned; the sentence of death has been passed on you. We’re all dead men walking.
The same Bible says, “The wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord” (Romans 6:23). Why can’t God just forgive me when I die in my sin? You may ask. God’s holiness would not treat sin casually. Justice demands punishment for every sin, just like it is in our country’s justice system. Yet the same just and Holy God is full of love. It is his love that motivated Him to give his son Jesus Christ to be punished on our behalf. God clearly shows and proves His own love for us, by the fact that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. (Romans 5:8). The full penalty of sin — the wages of sin — was taken up by a sinless substitute. Christ took our place in death and judgment, that we might have His place of acceptance and favor before God. You should only see your need of God’s mercy and trust Jesus Christ now as your saviour and you will be saved. This is called faith in Jesus. At this point, you might say, surely God will see that I am a good person. I don’t swear or curse, I give generously to those in need, I love people. Actually, these things could be factual even before a watching world. Your friends and loved ones will even repeat them at your funeral service, but God’s standard demands moral excellence which no one has attained, including you, right? You’ve heard of the statement, ‘nobody’s perfect’? It is a true statement. You have broken God’s law many times despite the good deeds you can count. It is like suggesting to a judge while in court that despite robbing that bank and killing the guard on your way out, you’re generally a good person. In fact, kids love you and you’re always giving to the needy so the judge should consider forgiving you. If you’re forgiven because of that argument, it will make headlines forever! Therefore because of nothing good in you, faith alone in Jesus Christ alone will save you.
One second after your death, it won’t matter to you whether you died in a palace or a pit. Your whole eternity will depend on the state in which you die. If you die in faith, Oh what a joy it will be to spend eternity in the loving and comforting arms of the Saviour together with others who believed! There will be no more tears or pain or sorrow or sin there, forever! If you die in your sins, having rejected Jesus Christ as your Saviour, your doom is sealed. All unbelievers “shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone: which is the second death” (Revelation 21:8). Medical research is great, doctors are awesome- God uses them tremendously, but as a matter of fact, it would be a million times better to die of cancer and go to heaven because of that cancer, than to live in perfect health and end up in hell.
Which of the two following phrases will describe you?
“Died Without Mercy” (Hebrews 10:28) or “Died in Faith” (Hebrews 11:13)?
You may die unsaved; but if you have read this, you will not die having not been loved and warned.