Dangerous neglect – Part 2
The Israelites, who were Old Testament believers, obtained redemption by faith in the anticipated priesthood of Christ, while New Testament believers, that is Christians, obtain same by faith in His already accomplished sacrifice. Based on the writings of Moses and the prophets, Old Testament saints had: (1) repentance and pardon; (2) forgiveness and freedom; (3) cleansing from sin; (4) conversion and salvation; (5) imputation of righteousness; (6) sonship or the privilege of becoming children of God; (7) their names were written in heaven; (8) righteousness; (9) the Spirit’s transformation; (10) purging and sanctification; (11) holiness and purity of heart by grace; and (12) preservation from hell and entry into heaven.
Thus, God made sufficient provision for Old Testament saints to obtain genuine spiritual experiences the same way we obtain them today. With this great provision of redemption, Abraham directed that sinners should read the Scriptures and be redeemed on the merit of Christ’s priesthood. Christ preached that sinners in the New Testament dispensation, who reject His Word, would be cast into hell, while Old Testament people who were saved would be found in heaven. This is because they knew about hell, how to obtain redemption and enter heaven, and obtained the requisite spiritual experiences.
“Knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, we persuade men; but we are made manifest unto God; and I trust also are made manifest in your consciences” (2 Corinthians 5:11). The knowledge of judgment after death, that sinners who die in sin will spend eternity in the lake of fire brings a responsibility with it for us to warn them of the terror of the Lord that awaits them. Christ and John the Baptist firmly declared that there would be judgment at end of a sinful life and career.
No one can be more gentle, tender, loving and compassionate than Jesus Christ, Who spoke about hell. A refusal to speak the same truth about the eternal suffering of sinners in burning fire is not an expression of virtue, but vice. It is disobedient to the command of God. So, we must tell our friends, families and well-wishers that sinners shall be “cast into hell fire … everlasting fire … everlasting punishment… the fire that never shall be quenched” according to the uniform testimony of Scripture; that “the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death” (Revelation 21:8).
Thus, we must preach the gospel, seek the lost, do the work of an evangelist, teach the Word and earnestly contend for the faith once delivered unto the saints, exhort and warn backsliders, pray to the Lord of the harvest to send more labourers into the harvest field, strengthen weak believers, warn the righteous, expose false prophets and the deceivers, rebuke compromisers and corrupters, turn many to righteousness and raise up a strong army of growing believers. As we declare the Word to rescue as many as we can, we must remain saved and steadfast, because it is “he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved” and rewarded on the final day.
Further Reading (King James Version): Luke 16:19-31; Isaiah 55:6,7; Micah 7:18,19; Psalm 103:3,12; 19:12,13,7; 51:12,13; 32:1,2; Isaiah 63:8,16; Exodus 32:32,33; Psalm 69:28; 132:9,16; 51:10,11; Isaiah 6:7; Leviticus 20:7,8; Psalm 4:3,4; 84:11; 9:17; 73:24,25,26; Daniel 12:2,3; Luke 13:24-28; 2 Corinthians 5:11; Matthew 3:10,12; 13:40-42,49,50; 18:8,9; 25:41,46; Mark 9:43-48; Luke 12:4,5; 17:28-30,32; Jude 7; Revelation 14:9-11; 20:10-15; 21:8; 2 Corinthians 5:18-20.
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