So many people believe when they die they will go to heaven, that Jesus just threw open the gates to heaven and everyone, everywhere will be invited in. Sadly, the Bible doesn’t bear that out. In fact, Jesus said FEW would be saved. Now if the stakes are THAT high, then it would seem to me that we should be spending our time fervently seeking God. Well, the stakes indeed ARE that high, are YOU willing to pay the price of being His disciple?

It is written in Matthew 7:7-27,
7 Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you:
8 For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.
9 Or what man is there of you, whom if his son ask bread, will he give him a stone?
10 Or if he ask a fish, will he give him a serpent?
11 If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him?
12 Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them: for this is the law and the prophets.
13 Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat:
14 Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.
15 Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.
16 Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?
17 Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit.
18 A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit.
19 Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.
20 Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.
21 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.
22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?
23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.
24 Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock:
25 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock.
26 And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand:
27 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.

Now to me, this is the most important message in the whole world. Jesus told the multitudes what the rules were. It’s up to us whether we sign up or not. Now, we are not saved by works, but by grace. And yet that grace requires us to separate ourselves from the ways of the world, unto the Kingdom of God. You cannot be God’s friend and the world’s friend, it has to be one way or the other.

This is the age of GRACE, without a doubt. But it is NOT the age of CHEAP GRACE. There is a cost to being a disciple of Christ Jesus. And every time I mention this, people “unsubscribe” from our mailing list, because they don’t want to hear about having to give up anything to be a disciple of Christ Jesus. All they want to hear is “Bless me, bless me, make me rich, make me famous.” Jesus said if we were going to be His, we would have to pick up our cross and follow Him.

Now, just in case you think I’m kidding, here are several verses in Jesus’ own words attesting to that:
Matthew 10:38  And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me.
Matthew 16:24  Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.
Mark 8:34  And when he had called the people unto him with his disciples also, he said unto them, Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.
Mark 10:21  Then Jesus beholding him loved him, and said unto him, One thing thou lackest: go thy way, sell whatsoever thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come, take up the cross, and follow me.
Luke 9:23  And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.

If this isn’t clear enough, then I don’t know what is. What did Jesus mean by “deny himself”? He meant that it’s no longer YOUR will being done in your life, but GOD’S will. And though many will say that’s what they really want, it ISN’T what they really want. They want Jesus to be their Savior, but they want to remain Lord over their own life. It’s kind of like telling God, “LORD, please give me salvation, but then go away, because I want to run my own life MY way.” I’m sorry, but it just doesn’t work like that. We’ve been sold a bag of lies by people telling us that we can live any old way we choose, that God wants us carefree and rich.

God does NOT want us to worry about anything, but to cast all our cares upon Him. And if we follow His guidance each day, He will lead us into His blessings. But He doesn’t guarantee we will be millionaires. Now, some ministries insist that if we sow “seed” into their ministry, God will give them an abundant harvest, some thirty, some sixty, some an hundredfold. And they really push the “hundredfold”, that if you’re not rich, then you’re out of the will of God.

Somehow we’ve become carnal, and only wanting what makes our flesh feel good. We’ve discarded, or at least “forgotten” the idea of building God’s Kingdom on this earth, of being witnesses for Jesus, and winning souls for Him, of living a holy life. We’ve stopped weeping over sin, and being appalled by what we see going on in the world around us. We’ve become “numb” to sin, to the point it no longer bothers us. And we use “grace” as an excuse to be just like the world.

It’s easy to assume when our life is over on earth, that we will hear, “Well done, my good and faithful servant, enter into the joy of your Lord.” But perhaps we should face reality: are we really faithful servants of our LORD, or are we faithfully serving our fleshly desires instead? Yeah, I know, “unsubscribe” because you don’t want to hear this. But I’m concerned for every soul hearing the message the LORD has given me to preach today. Christ Jesus paid a HORRIBLY high price to redeem each of us from our sins. What are we doing about that? Are we falling on our faces and thanking God, and picking up our cross daily and following Him? Or not? I’m not your judge, but I am one who loves your soul, and desires fervently that when the dust settles, you will inherit everlasting life.

One time the LORD asked me a question: “Jerry, do you want to be famous, or do you want to help people make it to My Kingdom?” I replied, LORD, I want to help people make it to Your Kingdom.  He said, “Then you’re going to have to tell them things they don’t want to hear sometimes.” So, if this is something you really don’t want to hear, I’m saying it because I don’t want you to miss out on God’s Kingdom. We need to take stock daily and see where we stand in God’s plan, Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it. Let’s make sure you’re one that finds it!