Some hard truth.

"The rest of mankind that were not killed by these plagues still did not repent of the work of their hands; they did not stop worshiping demons, and idols of gold, silver, bronze, stone and wood -- idols that cannot see or hear or walk."
Revelation 9:20

"They were seared by the intense heat and they cursed the name of God, who had control over these plagues, but they refused to repent and glorify Him."
Revelation 16:9

How do I even begin to understand the fullness of this scripture? After hurting from the thought, my first question is -- Why would anyone worship wood and silver and gold when they have a living God who loves unconditionally and gave His own life out of that love for us? How are things "that cannot see or hear or walk" more worthy of praise than the God of the Universe? Secondly, the book of Revelation talks about all kinds of signs, plagues and times where God will reveal His glory to the world. All of these plagues are horrific fall on the Earth giving the world another chance to see the Lord in all His power and might, and yet those who will be left will still chose not to repent, accept grace and walk with Jesus. This burdens me.... just the thought that there will be people at the end of the age that will actually choose not to let Jesus into their lives. This also got me thinking about repentance. Repentance alone is not enough... we must be willing to accept the free gift of Jesus. We cannot just repent in an empty sense and move on. He knows our hearts and wants all of our trust to be in Him. He stands at the door and knocks, even now, and asks if we will let Him in, let Him comfort our distress, cure the sin in our hearts and protect us. But first we have to be willing to let Him in. He will never be able to do a work in our lives if we don't. It is burdensome and unfathomable to me that people who are still on Earth when Jesus returns will literally be burning alive and will still not see the truth.

But then I think, why is the Gospel so offensive to people that they would chose not to believe it? Why do people think they don't need to accept this so called 'free gift of grace' that Christians talk about? And what is grace anyway? How does it affect us? I have come to the conclusion that the Gospel is offensive because it asks that we surrender ourselves and confess that we have no ability to control anything in our own lives. And that the only one who has control is a living, mighty and just, yet gracious and compassionate God. It's offensive to tell people that Jesus' death is the only provision for our sin, and the only way that we can experience eternal life. That's a hard pill to swallow, for anyone... especially for me. Actually, I try to swallow that pill every day, and if you're anything like me, actually taking pills is pretty difficult. Often times I don't even want to admit that someone is better and greater than me -- but that is my sin seeping to the core. I can only thank God every day for the sacrifice He made through the birth, death and resurrection of Jesus as not just a good guy or a good teacher or even a crazy person, but as Savior. His claim to be our Savior was proven as truth through His resurrection from the dead -- and this is the only reason why I even try to swallow the pill of this truth, and the only way I can wrap my mind around how tough it is to grasp.