Sound the alarm
Its common to see flashing red lights and to hear alarms in movies. It signifies, with very dramatic effect, an impending catastrophe. There’s no mistaking that something dreadful is about to happen.
We experience alarms in real life as well. We hear ambulances, fire trucks or police vehicles almost daily. Who hasn’t heard a car alarm lately? We hear them so often that its easy to become complacent. And that’s a dangerous thing. When we become so accustomed to alarms that we just tune them out, we put ourselves in danger of falling victim to what we are being warned about!
The Bible is full of alarms. The children of Israel were warned time and time again – directly from God, through the Law, and through the prophets – not to depart from the Lord’s commands. John the baptist’s message was, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand” (Matt. 3:2). He was telling those who would listen that Jesus was coming and He was bringing with Him the commands by which all people in the world would be judged from then on (John 12:48).
There is a sobering warning in 2 Thess. 1:7-8: “…when the Lord Jesus will be revealed from heaven with His mighty angels in flaming fire, dealing out retribution to those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus”. Notice how Paul describes disobedient people: those who do not obey the gospel. What does it mean to obey the gospel?
Obey simple means to comply with a command, direction or request. The gospel is the message of repentance – “…God is calling on all men everywhere to repent” (Acts 17:30). To obey the gospel means to repent! It means that we must make a change in our lives. We must no longer be conformed to the ways of the world but rather we are to live our lives in accordance with God’s will.
The consequences for not obeying the gospel are dire. Consider this from Hebrews 10:26-27, “For if we go on sinning willfully after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a terrifying expectation of judgment and the fury of a fire which will consume the adversaries”. And verse 31, “It is a terrifying thing to fall into the hands of the living God”.
The alarm has been sounded. Let’s not be so callous as to ignore it.