Prelude to Eternity
By Dr. Mark Creech – BarbWire guest contributor
The Scriptures indicate that Heaven is the literal realization of our heart’s every legitimate longing, with untold beautiful surprises beyond our wildest dreams. Hell is similar thereto, but the culmination of one’s every wicked want, with its own unexpected twists of consequence.
I Corinthians 2:9 reads, “Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.” In Hell, the rich man could see the beggar Lazarus in heavenly bliss embraced by Abraham. Lazarus had besought only the crumbs of bread from the rich man’s table, but was denied. The irony is the rich man was now in Hell witnessing the beggar’s riches in Heaven, while he, the rich man, begged for and was denied just a drop of water to quench his thirst. (Luke 16:20-25.)
The state of our spirits in this life is a prelude to our eternal state.
Despite the claims of the uninformed or those who would change the clear meaning of biblical passages, the practice of homosexuality is a sin. Genesis 19 describes the prurient lusts of the men of Sodom that brought down God’s wrath on that city. Leviticus 18:22 and 20:13, which do not simply declare some temporal law for Israel but a universal one for all peoples, says same-sex relationships are an “abomination.” Romans chapter 1 describes the culture that practices homosexuality guilty of dishonorable passions and indicative of idolatrous hearts. I Timothy 1:9-10 say the practice of homosexuality is contrary to sound religious belief.
Gay theology, which does violence to the most fundamental principles of hermeneutics – the science of interpreting any piece of literature – objects, arguing these passages don’t say every homosexual relationship is wrong, only specific kinds like men with young boys, or those with no gay orientation, etc. Nevertheless, no such qualifications may be gleaned from the texts, only imposed upon them.
The Scripture sounds a solemn warning, “Be not mislead; neither profligates, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor partakers in homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the avaricious, nor drunkards, nor slanderers, nor robbers will inherit the kingdom of God” (I Cor. 6: 9, 10 NBV).
Some years ago, the former head of Moody Bible Institute, George Sweeting, rightly argued:
“Homosexuality is a serious and offensive sin. But by far its worst effect is that it, along with other sins, can keep a man or woman outside of heaven forever. Today there are millions of homosexuals in our country…The degrading effect is beyond our understanding. But the tragedy above all else is that they are letting their lust come between them and the blessing of salvation.” 
Of course, gays and lesbians and those who advocate and defend the lifestyle rail against any voice of opposition that says homosexuality is sinful. They not only seek to excoriate such voices into silence, but they also work to punish such voices by public-policy.
Jack Phillips, owner of Masterpiece Cakeshop in Lakewood, Colorado, declined on the basis of his religious convictions to bake a wedding cake for a same-sex couple. Phillips was willing to provide other services such as baked goods, but to make a wedding cake in celebration of what his faith tells him is grossly sinful was too much. Now Phillips is facing legal action and a ruling to institute re-education classes for him and his staff. He’s been ordered to design wedding cakes for same-sex ceremonies in violation of his faith, as well as to send in compliance reports. 
On August 8th, Cynthia and Robert Gifford, who own and operate Liberty Ridge Farm in Schaghticoke, New York, and open it to the public for various events, refused a request to host a same-sex wedding ceremony. They said they couldn’t do so in good conscience. But the New York State Division of Human Rights has said their response based on their cherished belief that marriage is between one man and one woman is unacceptable. Therefore, the Giffords must host a same-sex wedding or pay a $13,000 fine. Like Jack Phillips, they too must institute so-called anti-discrimination re-education classes and procedures for their staff. 
These are just some of the most recent examples of the attack by homosexual activism on religious liberty. There are numerous others in this country and abroad where anything deemed “homophobic” is worthy only of censorship and punishment.
One day unrepentant homosexuals are going to get everything they’ve wanted, but with an unexpected result. One day, there will be no Christians to offend homosexuals with a challenge to their way of life. There won’t be any preacher present who would declare their way immoral or call on them to seek God for forgiveness and the power to change in Jesus Christ. All such preachers will be gone. There won’t even be a Bible anymore to tell them homosexuality is a sin. Every vestige of opposition to the gay and lesbian lifestyle will be forever silenced and removed.
Except it will not be the heaven homosexuals were convinced such circumstances would bring them. Instead, it will be in chambers of bondage where their red-hot lusts shall forever fuel the flames that consume their souls in Hell.
The Bible admonishes, “Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts” (Hebrews 3:15). “Now is the accepted time; behold now is the day of salvation” (2 Corinthians 6:2). “Put your trust in the light while you have it, so that you might become sons of light” (John 3:36).
Heaven is for those who turn away from their sins and turn to God through Christ. It’s where the soul is home at last. It’s where everything God’s people ever really wanted or needed in this life comes to full fruition in the next one.
Don’t miss Heaven. Don’t miss it for anything.
Resources: Sweeting, George. Special Sermons. Chicago: Moody, 1985. Print. Pg. 239  “Baker Who Won’t Make Cakes for Same-Sex Weddings Appeals Mandatory Re-Education Order.” Daily Signal. N.p., n.d. Web. 22 Aug. 2014.  “Government to Farmers: Host Same-Sex Wedding or Pay a $13,000 Fine.” Daily Signal. N.p., n.d. Web. 22 Aug. 2014.
Dr. Mark Creech is executive director of the Raleigh-based Christian Action League of North Carolina. He served as pastor for six different churches over a twenty year tenure before taking his current position, which he has held since 1999. As a registered lobbyist for the Christian Action League, Dr. Creech represents conservative evangelical churches in the North Carolina General Assembly from 16 denominations in the Tar Heel state. He is also president of the national organization, the American Council on Alcohol Problems.
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