Years ago, after hearing a gospel message, I wanted to give my heart to the Lord but I was afraid.
So I went home, and in the privacy of my father and mother’s apartment, I gave my heart to the Lord.
In that moment, looking back at what happened, I knew that something happened.
A few months later, I read about being born again in John chapter 3 that the Holy Spirit comes on the inside and we’re born of the water and the Spirit.
You know that a change takes place when the sins you were used to doing is gone.
I had a foul mouth. That was taken from me. But there’s another thing that was working in me. Lust. This stayed with me for over 40 years after being born again. I was unwilling to give up lusting after the flesh.
The story of His delivering power of lust could be found in my Prevailing Word blog and a book on Secret Sexual Sins.
I was living as a hypocrite believer and pastor. It would take God’s extraordinary power and a willingness on my part to let it go or be punished forever.
It almost took a public exposure of my porn habit. It got my attention and repentance from the dead works of porn and solo sex took place.
When you’re living as a rank hypocrite, your professed salvation is brought into question.
Either you’re saved or you’re not.
1 John chapters 1, 2, and 3, along with Romans chapters 6, 7, and 8 really helped. I also took a 2 month class with an accountability partner to help break the porn habit.
When most preachers like me talk about salvation, we want to hide the personal stuff and write off the fact that I was a child of disobedience, a child of hell, and a child of wrath.
Not only do we need to be saved from the power and guilt of sin, but we need to be saved from His wrath.
Colossians 3:5-7 (NKJV) “Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry. Because of these things the wrath of God is coming upon the sons of disobedience, in which you yourselves once walked when you lived in them.”
Romans 2:5 (NKJV) “But in accordance with your hardness and your impenitent heart you are treasuring up for yourself wrath in the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God…”
Romans 5:8-9 (NKJV) “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him.”
A lot of professed believers do not accept the Biblical fact that we’re also saved from wrath.
This wrath comes upon all those that do not walk in the Spirit, but walk in the flesh.
You can’t walk in the Spirit, and walk in the flesh at the same time.
You can’t claim to be in the light while walking in darkness (see 2 Corinthians 6:14-18).
In Matthew chapter 23, Jesus confronted the spiritual leaders of His day because they were hypocrites. They were claiming to be leaders but were bound in sin like the people that they were ministering to.
Job 8:11-14 (NKJV) “Can the papyrus grow up without a marsh?
Can the reeds flourish without water?
While it is yet green and not cut down,
It withers before any other plant.
So are the paths of all who forget God;
And the hope of the hypocrite shall perish,
Whose confidence shall be cut off,
And whose trust is a spider’s web.“
Salvation from the guilt and power of sin is Biblical, but what is the “hope of the hypocrite?”
Well, the hope of the hypocrite is the self imposed deception that you’re going to heaven while still practicing sin.
Matthew 7:21 (NKJV) “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven.”
What is the will of the Father?
John 5:14 (NKJV) “Afterward Jesus found him in the temple, and said to him, “See, you have been made well. Sin no more, lest a worse thing come upon you.”
That we would go and “Sin no more, lest a worse thing come upon you.”
The true believer grows in their relationship with the Lord to stop sinning against the Lord.
Romans 6:1-2 (NKJV) “What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin that grace may abound? Certainly not! How shall we who died to sin live any longer in it?”
Romans 6:23 says “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”
When we declare that we’re saved, not only does a change take place, but we’re saved from receiving the wages of sin.
What is the wages of sin?
When anyone works, they get paid.
When a criminal commits a crime, and when a jury convicts a person of the crime they’ve committed, the judge must sentence the convict for the crime they’ve committed.
A good judge will pass a sentence commensurate with the crime.
A good judge pours out his wrath to let the criminal pay for his crime by taking years of freedom away from you or your life. And if you die before finishing your sentence, it goes with the territory.
A bad judge will let you go without serving any time for the crime.
Rest assured that the Lord as Judge of all the earth will send every sinner to hell. Hell serves as the holding cell, but there is a day of judgment and this is where the eternal sentence every unrepentant sinner will be passed.
It is the eternal wrath of God in the lake of fire and brimstone (see Revelation 20:11-15).
The only way to avoid this penalty is to repent in this life. There’s no repentance in hell. No mercy. No compassion. No grace. No forgiveness.
We all have a “sell by date.”
When death takes place, all bets are off the table.