Bruce Collins, Evangelist

The personal website of Bruce Collins

Meditation for the week of November 18, 2007

Isaiah 55:6-7 (NKJV) Seek the LORD while He may be found, Call upon Him while He is near. Let the wicked forsake his way, And the unrighteous man his thoughts; Let him return to the LORD, And He will have mercy on him; And to our God, For He will abundantly pardon.

Norman Mailer was a respected author that recently died. An interviewer once asked him what his thoughts were on religious matters. Norman Mailer believed in reincarnation. He believed that his God rewarded the good and punished the bad. He thought that the reward did not have to do with heaven and hell but that it had to do with how we are reincarnated. He says:

“Heaven and Hell make no sense if the majority of humans are a complex mixture of good and evil. There’s no reason to receive a reward if you’re 57/43 — why sit around forever in an elevated version of Club Med? That’s almost impossible to contemplate.” (Timesonline, November 17, 2007, from The Times)

Norman Mailer did things in his life that most of us would consider bad. I doubt, from what he says, that he ever felt his need to acknowledge his sin. His concept of God and reincarnation did not require him to be accountable to the Creator God of the Bible. If he had repented, he could have been forgiven both now and in eternity. It is unlikely that he had this change of mind before he died.

Norman Mailer was like many people today who think that their thoughts are more dependable than what the Bible says. Many today think that the Bible is awfully narrow with only two roads, one to heaven and the other to hell. Some think that if there is a heaven, Jesus Christ is not the only way to get there (john 14:6). Some people who claim to be Christians think that we can be saved without becoming Christians and that the Bible contains truth but isn’t the final word on truth.

I wonder what Norman Mailer thinks now. The problem with his “now” is that he cannot seek the Lord and find Him now. The Lord has “power on earth” to forgive sins (Matthew 9:6). And it is only on earth that He does forgive sins. There is no Biblical second chance after we die.

We all have a choice to make. Are we going to believe that we are the final authority or that final authority is found outside of our own minds? And if final authority is found outside of us, who and where is that final authority? I have banked my eternal destiny on the fact that the Bible expresses God’s mind and is the final authority. I will take its teaching over that of the most respected scholar that rejects its teaching. I believe God when He says:

“He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.” (John 3:36)

Bruce Collins

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