The most heart-breaking day any of us will ever experience is Judgment Day. Why? It’s because of the separation that will occur.
Members of my family, if they continue to live as they have and die in that condition, will suffer as lost persons. That makes me sad, but I’m not about to turn myself away from the truth in order to disguise what is going to happen. Some people, however, do that. They are so unwilling to face the truth about their lost relatives and friends, they refuse to tell them the truth. If they continue to live as lost persons, they will be lost eternally. That’s not my judgment. That judgment belongs to God.
A friend of mine decided to commit adultery and mistreat his wife. My friend was divorced from his wife, but never really repented of that sin nor did he ask his wife to forgive him. He became a member of the church where we used to live and acted as if he had repented but did nothing to ask his wife’s forgiveness. He died recently and although he was a very positive influence on the members of that church, he never really did what he needed to do.
God has a very specific means of saving people. He gave Peter the keys of the kingdom of heaven and that apostle opened the doors by saying, “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized,” (Acts 2:38). Repentance is just as much a part of turning the key to salvation as baptism is.
My friend had every opportunity to repent, ask for his former wife’s forgiveness, but he never did. She’s been waiting to hear his confession of guilt, but she never has.
One either repents and obeys the gospel and is saved, or one does not and is lost. This statement is just as true as a person turns the key to unlock a door, or he stands outside. Sadly, there are people just like my friend who are going to be left standing outside the kingdom and lost, though they may think they are saved. Letting someone think that is cruel, isn’t it?
Yes, there are sins that we would confess and for which we would ask forgiveness but, for some reason, cannot. We can only right those wrongs as far as we are able. God knows that. But, to walk away from the things we have done in the past without at least trying to do what is right isn’t repentance.
I’m also sorry for the family my friend left behind. They think my friend is saved and they will spend eternity together. But, if one refuses to repent and turn from sin — that means making a clean break with sin and taking action to rid self of it by truly repenting — one has not really turned the key to heaven.
We sing a song in church entitled, “One Way to the Gate.” The song’s chorus says, “There is just one way to the pearly gate, to the crown of life and the friends who wait. Tis the old Cross road or the way called ‘straight,’ there is just one way to the pearly gate.”
No other way will do. That’s why there will be sadness on the day of judgment.