“Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly that God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Christ.”
Man, if left alone, is perfectly content to skip and frolic all the way to hell! Without the convicting work of the Holy Ghost, man’s goal is to do whatever is most satisfying to his flesh as much as he possibly can. Don’t disturb him with thoughts of eternity! He wants to be consumed with this life and all the pleasures it can bring him. He longs to be like the man whose fields brought forth such an abundance that he could build bigger barns and say to his soul, “take your ease—eat, drink, and be merry.” (Lk 12:19) The problem is that man proved to be a fool because that very night his soul was required of him! (v. 20)
Now, some of you grimaced as soon as you read the word “hell” above. Hell is much too uncomfortable to be mentioned! Some of you consider that type of preaching and teaching to be old-fashioned. “Maybe our great-grandfathers could appreciate ‘fire and brimstone’ messages, but that type of preaching isn’t for this modern day! We’re much too sophisticated for that language today.” But, in Rom 11:22 we are instructed to consider both “the goodness and severity of God”! Our preaching must be balanced enough to present God in his entirety—yes, a God of love, but also One of judgment; otherwise, we’re misrepresenting our Lord! After all, the Lord is timeless. His word is relevent in every age, and He preached: “But I will show you whom you should fear: Fear Him who, after He has killed, has power to cast into hell; yes, I say to you, fear Him!” (Lk 12:5)
As the apostle is preaching the gospel in Acts 2, he makes sure that his hearers know that they are guilty of the blood of the Jesus and that the One they killed and hung on a cross is in fact the Lord and the Christ! In other words, they are sinners! It is this issue of sin that is most critical in the lives of the lost, and our message must bring their sin to bear upon them so that they understand their need of a Savior. Jesus didn’t come to give us world peace. He said, “I did not come to bring peace but a sword.” (Mt 10:34) He didn’t come to fix our broken homes. “For I have come to set a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother- in- law and a man’s enemies will be those of his own household.” (v. 35-36) He didn’t enter our world to simply heal our physical infirmities. The only reason He ever did that was to show He could do something far greater! (Mt 9:6) So, why did He come? “This is a faithful saying and worthy of all acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners…” (1 Tim 1:15) If you find a man who knows he’s a sinner, then we have a message of hope for him!