1 Samuel 19:1-10 (Part 6) – Jonathan’s Choice and All Roads Lead to Heaven

Posted: March 9, 2018 in Uncategorized

1 Samuel 19:1-10 (Part 6 of 6)
Saul Tries to Kill David

In this series of six blogs, we have talking about false teachings that have crept their way into the Christian faith today. Today, we will look at the prevalent teaching in the modern day culture of today that all roads lead to heaven (commonly referred to as universalism by academic theologians). This teaching has made its way into the church as it tries to remain relevant in today’s culture.

Universalism teaches that all religions are worshipping the same God in different ways. This is what is known as syncretism. Some are teaching there are Messianic Muslims, that they can accept certain aspects of Jesus and still go back to practice Islam. Others say that God was in various cultures before Christianity and these cultures had a valid concept of God. That Christ reaffirms what they have known in their cultures practice. What is proposed is that no matter which religion is practiced, there are some common denominators we can unite and agree on, that they all have different roads that lead to the same destination. There are many who call themselves Christians that are moving toward a universalist view of mankind, where we can accept anyone’s God as the same God of the Scripture claiming we do not worship different Gods but the same one by different names. Accepting other religions as valid under the auspices of “all of us are worshipping the same God,” with different names is self-contradicting. The differences of religion are like different species. You can’t say a bird is a dog even though it may eat similar food. A whale may be a mammal but not like a human is a mammal. A car is not the same as a plane though they both may both run on fuel. What I’m trying to say is that there are differences in religion that cannot be overlooked, in both their mechanism of practice as well as defining God’s nature.

As we discussed yesterday, with the elimination of hell from our doctrinal teachings, then, the natural extension of that thought process is that everyone goes to heaven. Without hell, all of us, religious and non-religious alike are heaven bound. There are those Christians who genuinely believe that no matter how far from God a person is that a loving God reveals Christ to that person in their death. The same would be true in this line of thinking for a person who believes in something other than Christianity or believes nothing at all. God would reveal Jesus to them in their dying moments as a simple matter of course. In each case, an evil person or a person who has had no exposure to Jesus Christ would have him revealed to them in their dying moments such that they are reconciled to God. Such a sentiment is a wonderful one and a relaxing one.

The day we step into eternity may come sooner than we think. In preparation for that moment, we need to know this truth—not everyone is going to heaven. How can we know for sure that we are going to heaven? Some 2,000 years ago, the apostles Peter and John were preaching the gospel of Jesus Christ to a large crowd in Jerusalem. Peter made a profound statement that resonates even in our postmodern world: “Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved” (Act 4:12).

Thus, the universal truth is contrary to the popular sentiment of our day. We must be able to shed lies for the truth, even if the truth is something distasteful in this age of tolerance of all belief systems.

With that idea of discerning truth from error, let us read about the Jonathan had to make. He had to choose between doing his earthly father’s will (which sounds biblical and loving) and not violating His Heavenly Father’s will. The two, our earthly father’s will and our heavenly Father’s will, should be one and the same. However, as humans, we often twist God’s truth to our advantage or to support the sins we choose to overlook in ourselves:

Chapter 19
1 Saul now urged his servants and his son Jonathan to assassinate David. But Jonathan, because of his strong affection for David, 2 told him what his father was planning. “Tomorrow morning,” he warned him, “you must find a hiding place out in the fields. 3 I’ll ask my father to go out there with me, and I’ll talk to him about you. Then I’ll tell you everything I can find out.”

4 The next morning Jonathan spoke with his father about David, saying many good things about him. “The king must not sin against his servant David,” Jonathan said. “He’s never done anything to harm you. He has always helped you in any way he could. 5 Have you forgotten about the time he risked his life to kill the Philistine giant and how the Lord brought a great victory to all Israel as a result? You were certainly happy about it then. Why should you murder an innocent man like David? There is no reason for it at all!”

6 So Saul listened to Jonathan and vowed, “As surely as the Lord lives, David will not be killed.”

7 Afterward Jonathan called David and told him what had happened. Then he brought David to Saul, and David served in the court as before.

8 War broke out again after that, and David led his troops against the Philistines. He attacked them with such fury that they all ran away.

9 But one day when Saul was sitting at home, with spear in hand, the tormenting spirit[a] from the Lord suddenly came upon him again. As David played his harp, 10 Saul hurled his spear at David. But David dodged out of the way, and leaving the spear stuck in the wall, he fled and escaped into the night.

In this passage, we are challenged by the fact that Saul commands his son, Jonathan, to commit an act that is clearly unbiblical and is clearly against the nature of God. Jonathan had a choice to make. He had to decide whether what his father commanded him to do was consistent with Scripture and with the nature of God. Jonathan was wise enough to understand the difference between obeying a parent’s command and violating God’s law. Our parents should be teaching us and commanding us to do only that which is consistent with Scripture. In general, not just as children of our parents, we must be discerning about what we hear from others as biblical truth compared to the actual Word of God.

As https://www.gotquestions.org/going-to-heaven.html states,

“Now as then, Acts 4:12 is not politically correct. Today it’s popular to say, “Everyone’s going to heaven” or “All paths lead to heaven.” There are many who think they can have heaven without having Jesus. They want the glory, but they don’t want to be bothered by the cross, much less the One who died there. Many don’t want to accept Jesus as the only way of going to heaven and are determined to find another path. But Jesus warns us that no other path exists and that the consequence for rejecting this truth is an eternity in hell. He told us that “whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God’s wrath remains on him” (John 3:36). Faith in Christ is the key to going to heaven.

Some will argue that it’s extremely narrow-minded of God to provide only one way to heaven. But, frankly, in light of mankind’s rebellion against God, it’s extremely broad-minded for Him to provide us with any way to heaven. We deserve judgment, but God gives us the way of escape by sending His one-and-only Son to die for our sins. Whether someone sees this as narrow or broad, it’s the truth. The good news is that Jesus died and rose again; those who are going to heaven have received this gospel by faith.

Many people today hold to a watered-down gospel that does away with the need for repentance. They want to believe in a “loving” (nonjudgmental) God who never mentions sin and who requires no change in their lifestyle. They may say things like, “My God would never send a person to hell.” But Jesus spoke more about hell than He did about heaven, and He presented Himself as the Savior who offers the only means of going to heaven: “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” (John 14:6).

In the universalist approach, there is really no need for Jesus. And there is certainly no need for evangelism. Billy Graham wasted his time. Paul wasted his time. All of the apostles wasted their time. They sacrificed their lives for nothing. Churches are useless, bottom line, when it comes to the universalist view. If there is no judgment, there is no need to spread the gospel. If all roads lead to heaven, then why bother sacrificing your life for Christ. The truth is that hell and judgment are real for those who do not come to Christ. The all roads lead to heaven theology has no basis in Scripture. Jesus commanded us to take the gospel to the world and baptize and teach them all that he did and said. That is because there is an urgency to the gospel. If we do not repent of our sins and proclaim that Jesus died for our sins in our place and that He bodily arose to give us new life with God, then there is very real judgement.

Then evangelism to the four corners of the earth is not a luxury. It is a necessity. It is urgent. We must go into all the world and proclaim the gospel. That’s not wasted time. That’s not wasted effort. It’s a must!

 

Amen and Amen.

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