Mooresville church of Christ

Teaching The Gospel in Mooresville, NC and Around the World...

News & Articles

Do You Have A Reservation?

Do You Have A Reservation?

      Have you ever been asked this question? Of course, if one’s dietary desires are more toward Burger King, Chick Fil-et, Taco Bell, or Cracker Barrel, it is likely they won’t be asked this. There’s nothing wrong with these places to eat, but upon arrival you’ll usually only have to ‘sign up’ for a wait list if the restaurant is full, or your table needs to be cleaned. On the other hand, if your palate is geared more toward a more upscale restaurant where T-shirts, flip flops, and cargo pants aren’t acceptable attire, you may have to have your table reserved. A reservation means that something has been ‘set aside’ for you. For some fancy restaurants and hotels where you need a reservation, you call ahead and ask them to set aside a table or room for you at an arranged time. These reservations are recorded and ‘checked off’ as they are physically filled.
      Now, let’s apply this spiritually. The word “reservation” itself is not found in the Bible. However, the concept of having something ‘set aside’ is not absent from the Word of God.   First, let’s deal with the type of reservation all should desire to have. In 1Pet. 1:3-5 we are told of a ‘lively hope’ provided by the resurrection from the dead. Then we read of an undefiled, incorruptible inheritancereserved’ in heaven, which will be ‘revealed’ in the last time (or last day). We know this was written to those who have a reservation in heaven. How did they receive this reservation? In Heb. 12:23, those who were part of the church for which Jesus died had their names “written in heaven”.
      When, where and how were these names written in heaven?    Phil. 4:3 tells us the ones who labored with Paul ‘in the gospel’ had their names in the ‘book of life’. These were placed there ‘when’ they obeyed the gospel.   The ‘where’ is the book of life.   How does this happen? They were added (Acts 2:47) by the Lord when they ‘gladly received’ the preaching of the gospel (Acts 2:41) and were baptized into Christ. This occurs when one is ‘delivered from the power of darkness’ and are ‘translated’ into Christ’s kingdom (Col. 1:13). When one is ‘born again’ (baptized into Christ), they receive a reservation from God.
      Of course, a reservation can always be revoked by the one who issued it. In a restaurant or a hotel where a reservation is required, one who fails to, or refuses to abide by the conditions of the reservation will lose theirs. In Rev. 3:5 the Lord had John write to the church in Sardis regarding the pending fall of Jerusalem.   Each congregation in the letter was warned of the persecution that was to ‘shortly’ come upon them. The Sardis congregation was promised that those who persevered would not have their names ‘blotted out’ of the book of life. This implies that those in the church who did not persevere, or who did not continue to overcome would have their reservation in heaven revoked. This destroys the idea of ‘once saved – always saved’ doesn’t it?
      Secondly, we understand that there is also a reservation for the ‘heavens and the earth’.  Much has been declared, written, and speculated regarding the final demise of the world in which we live. These prognosticators need only to inquire of the Word of God to see what is ‘reserved’ for what God has created.    In 2Pet. 3:7 we see that our world is reserved unto fire.   Just a few verses after this in 2Pet. 3:10, we are told that the heavens and earth will pass away, the elements (of which all things consist) shall melt, and the “earth and the works that are therein shall be burned up”.   In 2Pet. 3:11 we see ‘all’ these things will be dissolved. This is not a reservation for the earth to be renovated as so many falsely teach, but a reservation for total annihilation issued by God and to be carried out by Him at the appointed time. This will not be revoked as it is a solemn promise from God Himself.
      Finally, there is a reservation some make for themselves which they do not really want to keep. In 2Pet. 2:9 we are told that God “knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations, and to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to be punished:”   1Cor. 10:13 tells how God ‘delivers’ the ‘godly’ out of temptations. He makes “a way of escape” (directions are found in His Word) if followed, so we can bear (overcome) every temptation. But the ‘unjust’ are those who have a reservation they’d rather not keep. This is because of what we read in 2Thess. 1:8-9. The vengeance of God will be upon all who “know not God” (those who serve self or Satan), and those who “obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ”. All these will then “be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power;
      Their refusal to do as God Commands in His Word is how they made this ‘reservation’ for themselves. An apt description of such folks is provided for us in Jude, verses 11-13. “Woe unto them! for they have gone in the way of Cain, and ran greedily after the error of Balaam for reward, and perished in the gainsaying of Core. 12 These are spots in your feasts of charity, when they feast with you, feeding themselves without fear: clouds they are without water, carried about of winds; trees whose fruit withereth, without fruit, twice dead, plucked up by the roots; 13 Raging waves of the sea, foaming out their own shame; wandering stars, to whom is reserved the blackness of darkness for ever.
      You do indeed have a reservation, but which one? The beauty of God’s plan for mankind is that as you live your life on earth, you have the choice of which reservation to make. God ‘keeps the books’ and makes sure you keep the reservation you make. Why not read and study His Word and be obedient to it before it is too late? Failure to fully obey God and His Word is to make a reservation in eternal Hell!

Dennis Strickland – Mooresville church of Christ

Upcoming Events

Share This Page