By Elizabeth Prata
I’m listening through RC Sproul’s current Daily Video series on the topic of Assurance. In his lecture on “Four Kinds of People”, Sproul made the point that most people think all they need to do to go to heaven is to die.
That statement is boiled down from all the false notions of how the unsaved/falsely saved people comprehend heaven.
They believe, he said, that if one has lived a good life, then they will go to heaven. This false notion is affirmed by the silent removal of all mention of sin at their funeral. Listening to eulogies, one can easily believe the person lived a perfect and good life.
So, when you die, you go to heaven.
Anyone who has lived on earth for any period of time knows that there are benchmarks to achieve when you’re progressing along in any sphere, whether it’s hobbies, employment, education, or life in general. Even a kindergartener moving to first grade knows that you have to pass tests and acquire enough knowledge. There are standards to attain. You need to attain educational standards before entering the next grade level. Colleges have standards for entry. You can’t drive a car unless you pass a test. The Army has standards for enrollment. Your employment depends on achieving a standard, whether it’s anything from a rigorous medical certificate to passing a drug test. Acting requires auditions. Sports requires tryouts.
On this earth, a person practically can’t do anything anywhere without achieving an externally set series of standards.
Because we all go there? So anyone can get in, anytime, for any reason? There’s no standard for entry?
It makes no logical sense.
Just like everywhere else on earth, where man has set a standard, of course there is a standard for entry into heaven. God made it. And since God made this entry requirement, it is perfect and good.
For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. (Ephesians 2:8-9)
To enter heaven, you must do the will of God.
“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven”. (Matthew 7:21).
So, what is the will of God?
God … desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. (1 Timothy 2:4).
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16).
The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel. (Mark 1:15).
Because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. (Romans 10:9)
God’s will is for people to repent of their sins and believe on His Son, the resurrected Christ.
Jesus is the standard, the one and only standard for entry to heaven.
Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (John 14:6).
It is true that all people die. But life does not end there. There is a test. Will you pass?
Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?—unless indeed you fail to meet the test! (2 Corinthians 13:5).
The test is to determine whether, at death, if Christ is in you.
When we die, there is a Judgment Day. (Hebrews 9:27). The one and only test will be whether Jesus knows us. Is Christ in you? If yes, you look forward to that glorious Day. If no, then you will come face to face with the Judge who will declare that you failed to meet the test, having failed to repent and believe in Him. He will cast you into hell to be punished for your sins, forever.
This is a pass-fail test. If you meet the standard, you’re in. If not, you will be barred from entry. There is no re-do. There is no auditing the class. There is no re-take. There is no bell curve. You won’t be graded on a scale. There is one and only one benchmark to meet, and it must be completed in this life before the last breath exits your lungs.
Repent of your sins and believe in Jesus.