Three Stages of Rejection

Matthew 16:24-27

We get a glimpse of the longsuffering of God in 2 Peter 3:9 where we read, "The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance." That tells me that God wants to see all people saved. However, it is up to each individual to accept or reject God's gracious offer of salvation through the shed blood of Jesus Christ. In our text this morning we see calling us to follow Him and be His disciples. He speaks of the foolishness of any who would exchange their soul for what this world has to offer. And yet, that is exactly what millions of people have done and continue to do each day of their lives.

In the gospels we find three men that Jesus talks about. Each of them represent various stages of those who would reject Christ and choose the things of this world. Notice the first stage is:

I. Opportunity. Mark 10:17-22

II. Hardening. Luke 12:16-20

III. Beyond Hope. Luke 16:19-31

Conclusion: What a tragic result. He had opportunity, hardened his heart toward God, and went out into eternity with no hope. Three stages of a man without Christ. If have rejected Christ today you still have the opportunity to be saved. If you have hardened your heart toward the things of God you can repent and accept Christ this morning. But if you go out into eternity without Him there will be no hope! Come to Christ today.

Christians, perhaps you know someone who is without Christ today. Pray that they will take the opportunity that God offers them. Pray that the Holy Spirit will melt their hard hearts and that they will be saved!