The story is told of two soldiers who had recently been released from a prison camp in Siberia following World War II. “We did our best,” said an officer, “to repatriate the men as fast as possible, but many were still there when winter threatened to close up the port.” Only a limited number could board the last small boat…
Among those waiting to be transported were two who had been friends all through the war. One of them was selected, but the other seemed doomed to remain behind. An order was given that those who were leaving could take only one important item of luggage. The heart of the man who was chosen went out to his friend, so he emptied his duffle bag of its prized souvenirs and his personal belongings and told his companion to get into the canvas sack. Then carefully lifting the bag on his shoulders, he boarded the ship with his dear friend — his single, most precious possession!
Because of our sins, you and I are doomed!
“For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” and “For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” (Romans 3:23; 6:23).
However, Jesus Christ died on the cross on our behalf as payment for our sins (2 Corinthians 5:21) “For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.
Jesus did this willingly so that you and I might gain safe passage “home” to live together with our Heavenly Father for eternity. Our “ticket” home came at a great personal cost to Him, however His self-sacrifice was motivated by His great love for us. “Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends“. (John 15:13)
Through the death of Jesus, a “new and living way” has been opened up for us to enter that heavenly home. (Hebrews 10:22) “Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water.”
Accessing this way to heaven requires Faith (Romans 5:1) “Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ”,
Repentance (Acts 17:30-31) “And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent. Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead“,
Confession (Romans 10:9-10) “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation“,
Baptism (immersion) for the forgiveness of sins (Acts 2:38) “Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptised every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.”
AND Faithful obedience in walking the well-lit path of righteousness (1 John 1:7) “But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.”
The last ship is leaving… Can you hear the boarding call? (Mark 16:15-16) “And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptised shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.”
Jesus has given up everything so that He can take you with Him into that ship whose destination is the safe harbour of heaven.
Don’t be left behind — YOU are HIS most precious possession!
Will YOU allow Him to carry you home?
Come unto me,
all ye that labour
and are heavy laden,
and I will give you rest.
~ Matthew 11:28