It was like deja vu.
Another Malaysia Airlines flight mysteriously vanishing from the sky.
Scores of people dead in an instant.
Government leaders and aviation experts scrambling for answers.
Hundreds of families and friends grieving for their loved ones.
The world in shock once again.
Nothing could have prepared the world for what happened on Thursday, July 17, 2014. A passenger airplane, carrying 298 people, was shot out of the sky as it flew over a war zone in eastern Ukraine. Residents of a Ukrainian village reported debris and corpses falling out of the sky — one woman said a body fell through her roof, another body fell into a neighbor’s garden. Hundreds of bodies fell into the wheat fields around the village.
Just as it seemed the world was recovering from the shock of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 — where 239 people were lost forever after a plane inexplicably vanished somewhere — another tragedy eerily reminiscent of the first re-opened worries, fears, and feelings of helplessness. The shock of this unexpected occurrence, which left families around the world from Australia to the Netherlands to the United States mourning the loss of their loved ones, reminds us of the fact that we can be here today and gone tomorrow. Or, more accurately in this case, here one minute and gone the next.
In times like these, we should call to mind the Bible’s words in James 4:14: “Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away.”
As King David prayed in Psalm 39:4: “LORD, make me to know mine end, and the measure of my days, what it is; that I may know how frail I am.”
This event reminds us that our lives are no more valuable than the lives of those lost on Malaysia Airlines Flight 17. We are just as fragile. We, too, can be here one moment and gone the next. We can pass from life to eternity in an instant because of some unexpected, tragic event that is totally beyond our control. Such events remind us that we need to be ready for death and for what comes after death: a meeting with God, our Creator, and the beginning of life in an eternal destination.
As the events of this past week showed us, we cannot be certain about the day of our death. (Surely, none of those aboard Flight 17 thought they were going to die in such a tragic way.) But what we can know for sure today, is whether or not you and I will go to Heaven if we died one day soon. Those 298 people no longer have the opportunity that you have right now. You have the opportunity to accept Jesus Christ as your Saviour so that you can know for sure that you are going to Heaven whether you die suddenly and unexpectedly or whether you die naturally after living a long life. Please don’t put off this decision, for as this past week has shown us, we do not know what tomorrow holds.
Do you want the blessed assurance of knowing that you are going to Heaven no matter when you die or how you die? If so, allow me to share with you three simple steps that you need to take to give your life to Jesus Christ today and be given a home in Heaven for eternity.
First, recognize that your sins have separated you from God. Our sins are the bad or wrong things that we do. Everyone in the world has sinned. The Bible says, “All have sinned and come short of the glory of God.” In honest repentance, agree with God about your sinfulness and admit your need for forgiveness. 1 John 1:9 says, “If we confess our sins, he [God] is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”
Second, realize that God loves you, and believe that his sinless Son, Jesus Christ, died for your sins — taking the punishment that you deserve. John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Romans 5:8 says, “God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” Because of Jesus Christ’s sacrificial death on the cross, we do not have to suffer eternal death and punishment in Hell.
Third, accept Jesus Christ’s invitation to Heaven by receiving Him by faith as your Savior from sin’s consequences. Romans 10:9 & 13 says, “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 whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
If you trust Jesus Christ for salvation, you will be saved from sin, spiritual death, and hell, and you will be guaranteed a place in Heaven. No matter when or where you die, your soul will be instantly transported to the presence of God. If this is your heart’s desire, please pray this short prayer to let God know that you are making this decision today:
Heavenly Father, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have sinned against you. For Jesus Christ’s sake, please forgive me of all of my sins. I now believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died, was buried, and rose again for me. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart, save my soul, change my life, and fill me with your Holy Spirit today and forever. Amen.
If you just trusted Jesus Christ as your Saviour, and you prayed that prayer and meant it from your heart, I declare to you that based upon the Word of God, you are now saved and you are on your way to Heaven. Welcome to the family of God! Congratulations on doing the most important thing in life and that is receiving Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour. For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”.
Believe by faith. Share the faith. And keep the faith! God Bless You!
Daniel Whyte III has spoken in meetings across the United States and in twenty-three foreign countries. He is the author of thirty-four books. He is also the president of Gospel Light Society International, a worldwide evangelistic ministry that reaches thousands with the Gospel each week, as well as president of Torch Ministries International, a Christian literature ministry which publishes a monthly magazine called The Torch Leader. He is heard by thousands each week on his radio broadcasts, The Prayer Motivator Devotional and the Prayer Motivator Minute, as well as Gospel Light Minute X, the Gospel Light Minute, the Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message, the Prophet Daniel’s Report and the Second Coming Watch Update. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Theology from Bethany Divinity College, a Bachelor’s degree in Religion from Texas Wesleyan University, and a Master’s degree in Religion from Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary. He has been married to the former Meriqua Althea Dixon, of Christiana, Jamaica for twenty-five years. God has blessed their union with seven children. Find out more at www.danielwhyte3.com. Follow Daniel Whyte III on Twitter @prophetdaniel3 or on Facebook.