Currently, I am reading through the Gospel of Matthew. It has been a great study so far as I take time to really dive in and see how Jesus teaches about the Kingdom that we can inherit. That God offers for each of us as His children. I’ve thought about this before, but something struck me today as I was reading through Matthew 10. In verses 32-33, Jesus says, “Everyone who acknowledges me publicly here on earth, I will also acknowledge before my Father in heaven. But everyone who denies me here on earth, I will also deny before my Father.” In verse 37 he says, “If you love your father or mother more than you love me, you are not worth of being mine…”
I was reading through this and something struck me again that I just had to share. It all boils down to a choice. We either choose to accept and receive Jesus Christ and all His works or we don’t. We either choose to believe in God as our Father, or we choose not to. We either love God and love each other or we choose not to. Either we choose to accept the life and restoration that is offered in Christ or we choose to not. It all boils down to a choice and the choice belongs to nobody accept ourselves.
God gave us something pretty miraculous when He created us. He gave us free will. He gave us choice. It’s really a beautiful thing when you think about it. God loves us that much to allow us to choose to love Him as well. Simply being, He wants us to want to love Him and not be forced into loving Him. The choice has always been ours. Adam chose Eve first over God and the result brought evil into the world and man fell and Satan was given dominion over the earth. The authority now belongs to Jesus now as He took it back.
Ponder this for a minute as well. God had a choice too. He made us in His image, so we bear that same choice. What if God chose to not spare Noah and his family? What if God didn’t promise Abraham that his descendants would number like that stars? What if David didn’t kill Goliath? What if God didn’t launch the biggest raid and rescue through the womb of young virgin raiding into enemy territory to rescue and restore the human race? What if Paul remained the Pharisee he was?
All of these questions are very relevant to us, because they all hinge on choice. Choices were made all through Scripture and today we have choices to make as well. The same holds true in life today. Looking at my own for instance. What if I decided not to go to Wild At Heart in January, where I strongly feel that God was calling me too? Sure, I may be going about my life, but I certainly would not be locked in the way I am now. It all comes down to choice.
Dwight Eisenhower stated, “The history of free men is never really written by chance but by choice; their choice!” That goes for all of history. None of it is by chance. We have come where we because of the choices that have been made. Our freedom in Christ is found because God made the choice to always pursue us, put on a robe of flesh, suffered and died for our sins, was raised to life to give us new life, and ascended to God’s right hand to take all authority and give us our freedom in Him. God could have let this world go long ago, but He chose to love us.
I may sound repetitive, but I think this is a critical thing that we must remember. God doesn’t want to lose any of us. He will pursue our hearts as long as He can, but He knows we won’t all choose Him. Hell was never intended for the human race, but for Satan and his demons, but if you don’t choose God, then as much as He won’t want to, we will denied to. Think about it. Why would you accept someone that continued to deny you as much as you try to pursue them?
So the choice is simple and it’s very powerful. As Andy Dufresne says in Shawshank Redemption, “I guess it comes down to a simple choice, really; get busy living or get busy dying.” When we make that choice to live in Christ, the offer is life and life abundantly. Life to the full. If we choose to deny Christ, the consequence is being denied ourselves and death. The choice is powerful and the choice is really simple. What do you choose?