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A Matter of Life And Death?

“Something’s are a matter of life and death, but football is far more important!”

-Our view of the importance of things is often determined by our perspective on them, which can sometimes be warped, much as I enjoy a footy game, I know deep down its not really a life and death issue.

During the recent Alpha Course I have been freshly challenged by the great quote from CS Lewis who writes :

“Christianity, if false, is of no importance, and if true, of infinite importance. The only thing it cannot be is moderately important”.

On Sunday we looked afresh at the cross and the question “why did Jesus have to die?”, which ultimately poses a critical questions: 

Do we really believe that our sins separate us from God? 

Do we really believe that the punishment for sin is death? 

Do we really believe that Jesus is the only way to the Father and the gift of eternal life”?

You see the Christian faith is not a matter of life and death, it is more important than that, it is a matter of eternal destiny.

I am reminded of a story by Bill Hybels who was sat next to a general  at a posh event, the general was talking down to Hybels and said “you wouldn’t understand the army, every day we make life and death choices” to which Hybels replied “if only the consequences of our actions were for such low stakes” -you see Hybels understood that the Gospel is a matter of life and death but for eternity.

I wonder whether the Church in the West actually really believes in a doctrine of hell, they may profess it but do we believe it and teach on it?

~Nor do we have an urgency about the gospel as we don’t have the concept of either the soon coming King, nor (because death is such a taboo subject in  our culture) do we realise that this might be the only opportunity to share our faith with someone because with life’s frailties someday may never happen.

Too often sharing our faith seems to be an optional extra on our Church agenda’s to consider after we’ve sorted out the heating and the plumbing, rather than actually our reason for being, to see real people come to know the God who died for them.

The Cross shows how serious God is about Salvation, he paid the uttermost price.

We need to grasp afresh the importance of being a missionary people, making Christ known isn’t a part-time hobby to be squeeze in between (I we’ve time) the shopping and watching Poldark?

I’ll end with a quote from Lesslie Newbegin who said this “it is not enough to have mission ‘on the agenda’ we need to have it on the lips of the people of God”.

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