Our “Goodness” Will Count For Nothing on Judgment Day

30 Oct

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Recently a video surfaced on the Internet showing off Apple’s new iPhone X. However, the phone was not yet commercially available. The video had been taken by Brooke Amelia Peterson, the daughter of one Apple’s iPhone employees who apparently had an advance copy of the phone.

After she posted her video to YouTube, it went viral. This didn’t sit too well with Apple, a company famous for its corporate secrecy.

Brooke’s father – Ken Bauer – was subsequently fired from his job for violating company policy. Her video was also removed.

Brooke then posted a follow-up video in which she announced her dad’s dismissal from Apple. In this second video she made the following statement:

“… it doesn’t matter how good of a person you are. If you break a rule they [Apple] just have no tolerance”.

Brooke apparently believes that her dad should not have been fired – even if he did break one of Apple’s well known rules – because he is a “good person”. Evidently, she believes that someone’s overall demeanor should override any “unlawful” activity they may engage in.

Apple can, of course, handle the situation as they see fit. If they wanted to overlook Bauer’s offense because he’s a nice guy, they could choose to do that.

Unfortunately, though, many people think just like Brooke does when it comes to God. And they couldn’t be more wrong.

Many people, if not most, think that if they are a good person they will go to heaven, even if they have broken some of God’s rules. Not only do they think they will go to heaven, they think they should go to heaven. But this is not true.

As God tells us in the Bible, good deeds do not make up for bad ones. Any sin that we commit – and we all commit lots of them every day – cannot be “undone” by doing something good. Not even by doing something really, really good.

There is no “undo” command when it comes to how God evaluates our behavior. Sin is a stain on our record that cannot be erased by anything we subsequently do, no matter how wonderful we think it may be.

Just like every crime committed in society needs to be paid for, every sin has a penalty too. We can either pay the penalty for our sins ourselves. Or we can allow someone else to pay it for us.

As the penalty for sin is eternal separation from God, no one can pay the penalty for anyone else’s sins – no one can serve two eternal sentences.

This is why God paid the penalty on our behalf.

God came down from heaven and became a human being we call Jesus. He lived a completely perfect and sinless life, never breaking even one of God’s commands. He then died on the cross for a sin He didn’t commit – a sin, in fact, it was impossible for Him to commit.

Then while hanging on the cross in excruciating agony, He took on the wrath of God in our place as God abandoned Him, thereby paying the penalty for each and every sin mankind will ever commit.

Now, anyone who accepts Jesus’ death as the necessary and complete payment for their sins will be 100% forgiven by God. No questions. No strings attached.

This is the only way to have one’s sins forgiven and to see heaven. No one can atone for their owns sins. They can only be erased by Jesus.

Many people may take exception to this, but this is no different than how our own judicial system operates.

By all accounts, O.J. Simpson was a “good person”. He was affable. He did charity work. But none of that counted for anything – nor should it have – when it came to his legal issues.

Bernie Madoff ripped people off for millions of dollars. He also gave a lot of that money away to charities, not to mention did lots of good work before getting caught. But that didn’t matter – nor should it have – during his trial.

The guilt of these men – or anyone else – could not be – and should not have been – overlooked because of anything good that they did.

God works the exact same way. All sins – like all crimes – need to be atoned for. None can be overlooked. That would not be fair.

On judgment day each of the billions and billions of human beings who were ever born will stand trial before Jesus, our judge. Each of us will be guilty. There’ll be no doubt about that. We’ve all broken more rules than we can count.

At this trial, no one will have a chance to offer up a defense. None of our so-called “good deeds” will be presented as evidence because none of them will matter. All that will matter is that we’re guilty. And for our guilt, we’ll deserve to be separated from God forever (we call that hell).

But God, who loves everyone and wants everyone to be with Him in heaven, made a loophole.

Anyone who, during their lifetime on earth, repented of their sins and accepted God’s offer to forgive their sins through Jesus’ death will be spared. God will erase their sins because the payment for their wrongs will have already been made by Jesus on the cross.

Such people won’t just be declared “Not guilty”. They will be declared “Innocent”. It will be as if they never sinned even once in their life.

Brooke Amelia Peterson’s dad may be a good person. He may be the best guy in the world. But when it comes to judgment day he, like all of us, will be glaringly guilty. No amount of charity work or overall “niceness” will save anyone from hell.

The only thing that can save you is throwing yourself on God’s mercy and accepting the only method available to escape hell: Jesus’ atoning death on the cross.

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