"Please, will you ask her?" I pleaded with my older sister for the umpteenth time.
Katrise lived next door. She was my older sister's best friend and was having her Sweet Sixteen birthday party in a few days. I wasn't invited; I was only thirteen, but I really wanted to go!
Finally, my sister gave in. She asked Katrise if I could come, and Katrise said "Yes"!
On the day of the party, we went next door and rang the doorbell, and Katrise answered. We could hear music and laughter inside; it sounded like so much fun. Katrise stepped out of the way to let my sister in. I was about to follow, but Katrise stopped me and said, "Cheryl, I'm sorry, but my mother said you're too young and can't come to the party."
I was embarrassed, shocked, and hurt. Hadn't Katrise even consulted with her mother before she told my sister "Yes" I could come?
One day, I read my Bible and realized that my denied entrance into the birthday party was nothing compared to the man who was denied entrance into heaven.
Matthew 22:11-13 – When the king came in to see the guests, he saw there a man which had not on a wedding garment: And he saith unto him, Friend, how camest thou in hither not having a wedding garment? And he was speechless. Then said the king to the servants, Bind him hand and foot, and take him away, and cast him into outer darkness; there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. (KJV)
I lost out on a birthday party, but this man lost out on eternal life!
According to God, if one is to be accepted into heaven, being clothed in the righteousness of Jesus Christ isn't an option; it is imperative!
John 14:6 – Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. (KJV)
Notice that Jesus didn't say that He was one of the ways to heaven. He said that He was "The Way".
Acts 4:12 – Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved. (KJV)
The man in the parable wanted to enter heaven, but apparently on his own terms, clothed in his own righteousness, when it is written in Isaiah 61:10b, "He [God] hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, he hath covered me with the robe of righteousness." (KJV)
That righteousness became available when Jesus shed His blood and died on Calvary's cross. He was then buried, and on the third day rose again.
Songwriter Elisha A. Hoffman asked:
- Are your garments spotless? Are they white as snow?
Are you washed in the blood of the Lamb?
If you are not sure that you will stand spotless before God, why not pray this simple prayer and settle the matter today?
Prayer: Lord Jesus, I am a sinner. Please forgive me for my sins, wash and cleanse me with Your precious blood, and make me a child of God. I pray in Your name. Amen.
Listen to this devotional
Listen while you read: "At Even When The Sun Was Set" (Lyrics)