Our Greatest Need

“Repent therefore and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, so that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord”

Acts 3:19

I have watched a lot of news like most of America who are trying to learn what the most recent updates regarding the Coronavirus are. In literally every COVID-19 briefing we hear the words, “Our greatest needs are…” and with each day the needs change. As the needs change daily so do the debates on what is most important. This might be hard to accept yet nothing I could write is more true. The greatest need any person who has ever been born into this world is exactly the same thing. Our greatest need is not subject to viruses or the economy or the climate around the world for the simple reason it is God Himself who has told us from the very beginning what our need is.

Our greatest need can be summed up in a Christmas card I received years ago and one that throughout the years I continue to receive from friends who are able to find each year knowing its my favorite Christmas card. On the front of the card it usually has a scene depicting the manger where Christ Jesus was born. Above it are the words, “OUR GREATEST NEED”. When you open the card you find the words below.


If our greatest need had been information, God would have sent us an educator;
If our greatest need had been technology, God would have sent us a scientist;
If our greatest need had been money, God would have sent us an economist;
If our greatest need had been pleasure, God would have sent us an entertainer;

But our greatest need was forgiveness, so God sent us a Savior.


Yes, loved one, your greatest need and mine today is the forgiveness God has provided when He sent His Only Begotten Son to die upon the Cross so that we could know Him and enjoy life with Him throughout eternity. Don’t get me wrong and let the enemy of your own soul try to convince you that I am saying we don’t have other needs. We have great needs today, like a cure for the COVID-19 virus for one, but that still falls far short of our greatest need. Yes, we have a need for food, water and clean air to breathe. We have basic needs essential to human life that are all equally important but they still pale in comparison to our greatest need. You see, loved one, Jesus came to save us from something far more deadly than the coronavirus. Jesus came to save us from sin and death.

There is an old saying that goes, “die once, live twice or live once and die twice” which is to say if you receive the forgiveness God offers us in a personal relationship when we repent of our sins and turn to Him we die to ourselves in that moment and are Born Again by the Spirit of God. Being Born Again ensures us then that we will never die. Never die? Thats where living twice comes in. We will live the rest of our life on earth and then when we die (which the Bible calls sleeping for the believer for the simple fact that in less than a millisecond when we breathe our last breath we will open our eyes and see Jesus face to face) the Bible teaches us that we are immediately in the presence of God for all eternity. Thus the meaning, live twice.

The other option is to live once and die twice which means to live your life on your own terms believing there is no God or that repentance isn't required for eternal life. To die twice means you are spiritually dead already as God is Spirit and you have no spiritual life in you as the only means possible for enjoying God is by repenting of our sins and receiving His Son who paid the price for us so we could live. Then, if you have not repented of your sins and when the time comes as it does for us all, you die, the Bible teaches that the person who has not received the forgiveness Jesus offers will then experience what is referred to as the “Second Death.” That second death occurs when God casts the person who chose not to receive the forgiveness of their sins made possible through repentance into the Hades or Hell as we know the name to be, "the lake of fire" that originally was created for the Devil and his angels but enlarged to include rebellious mankind. Thats what it means to die twice.

The Good News of the Gospel, loved one, is God loves us, so much more than we could ever know and He sparred not even His one and only son to prove it to us. The Bible says plainly in 2 Peter 3:9, “The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.” In other words, God doesn't want anyone to go to hell when they die and has gone to great links to communicate that to us. It’s why He has me sharing this with you today. God is not your enemy, the devil is. God's heart is to save us if only we will allow Him too.

Are you aware that knowing Jesus as your Savior and Lord comes with a benefit package? That's right, a benefit package that you might say is out of this world, literally! Check it out for yourself, read the fine print today and share it with others too! I think you will see why forgiveness is our greatest need for when we receive forgiveness the benefit package that comes with it is ours too! My prayer is reading it today encourages your heart like it does mine, especially in these days of uncertainty we are living. The benefits of repentance can be found in Psalm 103. The psalmist writes,

 
“Bless the LORD, O my soul; And all that is within me, bless His holy name! Bless the LORD, O my soul, And forget not all His benefits: Who forgives all your iniquities, Who heals all your diseases, Who redeems your life from destruction, Who crowns you with lovingkindness and tender mercies, Who satisfies your mouth with good things, So that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.”

Psalm 103:1-5


Talk about a benefit package!  


I LOVE YOU!

Michael Osthimer

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