By Patrick Hawthorne
Is there anyone so far removed from the love of God that they have lost all hope of salvation? Better yet, has anyone committed such a egregious act of evil that the sacrifice of our Lord Jesus could never reach them? These are serious questions in which many Christian’s do not have sound Biblical answers to.
Stalin, Hitler, and Idi Amin are just a few of the more recent names that pop into my mind when I think of evil at its very core. Yet, was salvation beyond them if they would have heeded the call of the Holy Spirit and accepted Jesus as Lord and Savior? From the word of God, I say with all confidence the answer is, “no.” No, salvation was not beyond them. Why? Because the greatest act of evil will never outweigh the greatest act of love. For God so loved the world that He gave his only begotten Son (Jesus) that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life (John 3:16).
One of the most comforting passages in the Bible – to me anyways – is found in 1 Kings 21:28-29. “And the word of the Lord came to Elijah the Tishbite, saying, 29 “See how Ahab has humbled himself before Me? Because he has humbled himself before Me, I will not bring the calamity in his days. In the days of his son I will bring the calamity on his house.”’
This is a truly amazing statement when considering that – just a few verses above – Ahab was declared to be one of the most evil kings in the sight of the Lord. The Bible says, “But there was no one like Ahab who sold himself to do wickedness in the sight of the Lord, because Jezebel his wife stirred him up. 26 And he behaved very abominably in following idols, according to all that the Amorites had done, whom the Lord had cast out before the children of Israel. (1 Kings 21:25-26 NKJV emphasis mine}.
What changed from verse 25 to verse 28? It was the fact that Ahab humbled himself before God after receiving a stern rebuke from Elijah who was speaking on behalf of the Lord. This was not some weak apology on behalf of Ahab. No, the king was so cut to the core by the words of the Lord through Elijah that he tore his cloths, donned sackcloth, and fasted. Ahab was serious in his repentance.
So, back to the opening questions. Is there anyone so vile and hateful to be beyond the sacrifice of our Lord Jesus or beyond the love of our Heavenly Father? Again, the answer is a most definite, no. So don’t lose hope. God is not willing that any should perish. If evil Ahab wasn’t too far from God’s call to repentance, I am quite confident that neither is your loved one. Don’t give up on them. It may be that you just need to pray in an Elijah to cross their path and hit them between the eyes with a word from the Lord. Be blessed.