It is a terrible thing to fall into the hands of the living God. Think back on those early days when you first learned about Christ. Remember how you remained faithful even though it meant terrible suffering. Sometimes you were exposed to public ridicule and were beaten, and sometimes you helped others who were suffering the same things. You suffered along with those who were thrown into jail, and when all you owned was taken from you, you accepted it with joy. You knew there were better things waiting for you that will last forever. So do not throw away this confident trust in the Lord. Remember the great reward it brings you! Patient endurance is what you need now, so that you will continue to do God’s will. Then you will receive all that he has promised. “For in just a little while, the Coming One will come and not delay. And my righteous ones will live by faith. But I will take no pleasure in anyone who turns away.” But we are not like those who turn away from God to their own destruction. We are the faithful ones, whose souls will be saved.
Dear God, the other night I heard a woman say that she was tired of all of the persecution the church is under right now. I’ve got to tell you, at least living in this part of the country, I feel zero persecution. There is certainly nothing happening in our entire country that rises to the level of what is described here. We are absolutely soft.
But what I want to look at are the first words of this passage: “It is a terrible thing to fall into the hands of the living God.” Why is it terrible? I think the author is saying that I am no longer my own. When I submit my will and my life then I am yours and sometimes that will lead me to places I don’t want to go. I have to deny some things that bring me immediate gratification and exchange them for humility and service. I have to love you and other things more than myself. I must discipline myself to throw off the sin that entangles me and press on towards the goal you have set for me.
What do I get in exchange? Mercy and freedom. Peace. Joy. There is no other source for such things.
Father, no, for me it is not a terrible thing to be in your hands. You are good and I am grateful for you. My life has not turned out as I had hoped or dreamed, really in any way. But I wouldn’t trade it. I have it better than I deserve. Please reveal to me how you would like to use me today to love others and serve you.
In Jesus’s name I pray,