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Joy or Terror

By Michael Cloy

McDowell Countymichael cloy mcdowell county Joy or terror

 

Have you ever had an embarrassing moment when you spoke to someone you were sure you knew from your past, and yet they acted like they did not know you? You try to convince them that they know you by bringing up key events that the two of you shared. And yet, they cannot recall who you are. Their expressions to you are cold, foreign, and maybe even fearful. They have judged you as a stranger, and it is both disappointing and maybe even a little terrifying that you have been forgotten.

In a contrasting experience, have you ever bumped into someone you have not seen in a while, and they immediately remember you? The instant joy is evident with warm expressions of smiles, hugs, handshakes, the recall of positive shared memories and maybe even plans to renew and deepen the relationship. You are overwhelmed with happiness. They have judged you as a true friend, and you are thrilled to be remembered and reunited.

The Bible describes that when we die, we will meet the Triune God. Hebrews 9:27 promises us this meeting will take place when it states, “it is appointed for men to die once but after this then judgment.” 2 Corinthians 5:10 says, “for we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may receive what is due for what he has done in the body, whether good or evil.” However, unlike the casual possibility of meeting an old friend from the past who may or may not remember you, the meeting with God in judgment is an appointed certainty.

So, the most critical question in all of life is will Jesus Christ recognize who you are when you stand before him? Will you hear Jesus say to you, “well done, good and faithful servant” followed by, “enter into the joy of your master” (Matthew 25:21). Or, will you hear the most terrifying words a person will ever hear when Jesus says to you, “I never knew you, depart from me” (Matthew 7:23)? Are you ready to have that meeting of judgment with Jesus Christ? Will the result be joy, or will it be terror?

At Landis Presbyterian, we are being prepared by God to meet him through the reign and rule of God the Son by the work of God the Holy Spirit in our hearts. We see this promise in Philippians 1:6, “and I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.” That day of Jesus Christ is explained in Matthew 10:32-33,so everyone who acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven, but whoever denies me before men, I also will deny before my Father who is in heaven.” Worship is God’s way of preparing us for that day when he calls us to stand before him in judgment. Therefore, we “strain forward to what lies ahead and press on towards the upward call of God in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3:13-14).

You are invited to come worship with us to press towards the upward call in Christ Jesus. If you have professed Jesus Christ before men, then God knows you. We look forward to rejoicing in God with you as we are united in Christ. If God does not know you, then come and meet him at Landis. Hear and receive his promise of salvation in his word by the power of God the Holy Spirit. Confess him before men and rest in Jesus Christ’s joyful words of “well done, enter the joy of your Lord” so that you will not hear Jesus say, “I never knew you, depart from me.”

If you would like to know more about Landis OPC, you can see who we are in our welcome video found at vimeo.com/491464277. You can also contact Elder Mike Cloy at opcmikecloy@gmail.com

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If you would like to know more about Landis OPC, you can see who we are in our welcome video found at vimeo.com/491464277. You can also contact Elder Mike Cloy at opcmikecloy@gmail.com

Mike Cloy is an Ordained Ruling Elder on the Session of Landis, OPC, Landis Presbyterian Church, OPC. You can contact him at opcmikecloy@gmail.com

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