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Hairy Rodents, Restaurants, and Judgment Day

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By Lane Palmer, Christian Post Guest Columnist
January 31, 2007|9:07 am

Ever come across or played a game that involves “which is worse” scenarios? They’re designed to get you thinking about what you consider to be the lesser of two evils, which in turn tells you something about yourself.

For example, which is worse:

Full leg cast at senior prom
Dental headgear for Senior Pictures

In this case you’ll discover if prom trumps pics, or pics trump prom, or Donald Trump pics trump…oh never mind.

How about this one? Which is worse:

Finding a hair in your hamburger
Seeing a rat run across the floor of the restaurant

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Of course I’ve been to a few restaurants where both of these could happen within a few minutes of each other…but I digress. The point is what you choose reveals what grosses you out more between hairy food and hairy rodents.

Then there are a few that really get you thinking, like this one:

Which is worse: not telling someone you like them, but never knowing if he/she felt the same way?
Or…
Telling someone you like them and he/she publicly humiliates you?

I think this dilemma is what originally created the whole note-passing-check-the-box thing, because if he/she checks the “no” box, you could always go behind the school and rip it to shreds in total enraged privacy.

I have one more for you, but this “which is worse” scenario isn’t a game, and it will tell you one of the most important things about yourself.

Ready?

Which is worse…

Going through life believing in a Judgment Day
Going through life not believing (or not wanting to believe) in a Judgment Day

Think about it. To some this is the ultimate “which is worse,” because if you believe in a day when we will have to stand before God and give an account for our lives, you probably don’t live by the “if it feels good, do it” philosophy (oh bummer!). On the other hand, if you don’t believe there’s a Judgment Day, you run the huge risk of being wrong and ending up extremely ashamed for eternity because you weren’t ready for it.

A little worse dilemma than hairy hamburgers and hairy rodents, wouldn’t you say?

This is why I’m so glad that the word of God makes this real easy for us. See if you agree:


“For we will all stand before God’s judgment seat…so then, each of us will give an account of himself to God.” (Romans 14:10-12).

“For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive what is due him for the things done while in the body, whether good or bad.” (2 Corinthians 5:10)

Seems pretty clear to me that there’s a thing called a judgment seat, mainly because the Bible teaches that there’s a thing called a judgment seat. If you notice from the verses above, Paul uses the words “us,” and “we.” The reason for this is the audience he writes to, which is comprised of Christians. So what that means is that this isn’t a judgment about whether or not you’re getting into heaven. That deal is already done (1 John 2:2), so what you’re giving an account for is the way you lived your Christian life. In other words, what did you do with all the time, treasure, and talents that God gave you? Did you use them to love God and love others? Or did you waste them on your own pride, pleasure, and position? Remember these two questions, because one day you won’t be just reading them…you’ll be hearing them from the very lips of Jesus Christ.

So what happens to those who aren’t Christians? The Bible gives plenty of warning about this as well:

Then I saw a great white throne and him who was seated on it. Earth and sky fled from his presence, and there was no place for them. And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Another book was opened, which is the book of life. The dead were judged according to what they had done as recorded in the books. The sea gave up the dead that were in it, and death and Hades gave up the dead that were in them, and each person was judged according to what he had done. Then death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. The lake of fire is the second death. If anyone's name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire. (Revelation 20:11-15)

Twice in this passage, John mentions the word “judge” – as in “to be judged.” And like our judgment, this one doesn’t determine salvation either. That chance ended when “the dead” became “the dead,” and now they have to answer for the hundreds or thousands or millions of times they said “no” to God’s free offer of salvation. Don’t worry, no one will be caught by surprise on this day, because in a flash people will remember how they insisted that Christ was not the way, the truth and the life. Here’s the way C.S. Lewis put it:

There are two kinds of people: those who say to God, "Thy will be done," and those to whom God says, "All right, then, have it your way."

Come to think of it, this is the bottom line to our Judgment Day scenarios. Believing in Judgment Day and living in light of it is a perfect way to say “Thy will be done.” Not believing (or not wanting to believe) is the perfect way to end up before God as He points the way to hell saying “all right then, have it your way.”

And I can’t imagine anything worse than that…can you?

Neither can I, so if you’re serious about learning how to share your faith with your family and friends, go to www.dare2share.org/gospeljourney and let God use you to help people escape the Judgment Day they definitely need to avoid!

______________________________________________________________


Lane Palmer is the Youth Ministries Specialist for Dare 2 Share Ministries in Arvada, Colo., where he works with to provide resources for youth leaders and students. Dare 2 Share exists to energize and equip teens to know, live, share and own their faith in Jesus. For more information on Dare 2 Share Ministries or the GameDay youth conference tour, please visit www.dare2share.org. Send feedback to lane@dare2share.org.

 

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