Trust in the Lord: What's in a Number?
Numbers have always played an important part in my life (and I suppose most everyone’s life). “I’m 15 ½” I proudly stated as I anticipated getting my drivers permit. And then the magical number came: 16! I was able to drive at last. My world changed dramatically as I was now given bits of freedom with so many choices to make. Speed limits were numbers I respected because if I didn’t obey them, I would use my hard earned money to pay the traffic fines. Money numbers, adding to my account each week, were taken seriously, and I was careful to use my paychecks, a result of being able to finally drive, for gas, fun and clothes.
Recently a number came into my life in such a powerful way that it has knocked the breath out of me. 3:16. Max Lucado wrote a book called “3:16 - The Numbers of Hope” and it is more than I had expected. So much more. Of course I knew John 3:16. All Christians know it. But Max has taken it apart and brought me to my feet in celebration of God’s love and to my knees in appreciation of the gift of life, eternal life, in a way I had never experienced.
One of the first things Lucado does is remind the reader of the HOPE that John 3:16 offers. He writes: “He loves, He gave, We believe, We live.” Simple, yet in the words of this master storyteller, it struck me how many people do not believe. And never will believe. And never will live with God in eternity. But their lives do not just stop upon death.
People who do not believe in Christ will live in eternal hell. It is as black and white as that. Modern times have sadly softened the gospel and talk about hell is almost taboo, like talking about politics at a two year olds birthday party. People don’t want to offend anyone with “religious talk.” I know of people who actually think that after death adults who are unsaved will be given a last opportunity to choose to believe in God. That is a falsehood from the enemy of God and one designed to make people not share the truth now. It is in life that our choice must be made.
We need to take hold of John 3:16 in a way like we never have before. It is “The Number of Hope!” What would we say to a person after their death if they were able to ask us why we didn’t share the truth about John 3:16? I shudder to think of missed opportunities on my part and pray that I never miss one again.
Memorize the 26 words of hope from John 3:16. Write them on the tablet of your heart. Be ready to share them in any way you feel is right and appropriate . . . at all times. Tim Tebow did it and so can we. I chose this version because it is the one I memorized when I was with Campus Crusade for Christ.
so loved the world
that he gave His one and only Son,
that whoever believes in Him
shall not perish but have
Bible gateway.com has any version you like: http://www.biblegateway.com/
I do not make any money from promoting this book by Lucado. It is an amazing, easy to read book and I enthusiastically recommend it to you. I found mine at a Goodwill store for under $3.00. A very good number!
This is taken from my blog called Daily T.A.P..which can be found on Google Blogger http://www.tap4Him.blogspot.com/