Summary: Proposition: There is no escape from eternal punishment for anyone who lays aside their obedience to Jesus Christ.
Falling into the Hands of the Living God
Rev. Sean Lester
September 14, 2003
If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left,  but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God.  Anyone who rejected the law of Moses died without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses.  How much more severely do you think a man deserves to be punished who has trampled the Son of God under foot, who has treated as an unholy thing the blood of the covenant that sanctified him, and who has insulted the Spirit of grace?  For we know him who said, "It is mine to avenge; I will repay," and again, "The Lord will judge his people."  It is a dreadful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.
 Remember those earlier days after you had received the light, when you stood your ground in a great contest in the face of suffering.  Sometimes you were publicly exposed to insult and persecution; at other times you stood side by side with those who were so treated.  You sympathized with those in prison and joyfully accepted the confiscation of your property, because you knew that you yourselves had better and lasting possessions.
 So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded.  You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promised.  For in just a very little while,
"He who is coming will come and will not delay.
 But my righteous one will live by faith.
And if he shrinks back,
I will not be pleased with him."
 But we are not of those who shrink back and are destroyed, but of those who believe and are saved.
A. It is a dreadful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.
1. Those who fall in the God’s hands are those who have become enlightened to the truth. They have tested the goodness of salvation and the blessings that come with it.
2. Despite accepting salvation, they choose to remain in the sins that they were committing before coming to Christ, or continue in sins after coming to the knowledge of the truth.
3. Such people are “squirrelly”, they are loved by the people of the church. They give the church a false hope that they would become a “sold-out” Christian, but they are “not-ready.” Yet to settle down. They are like trying to catch a mouse, or teach a cat to walk a straight line. They are hard to catch.
4. Eventually, God will catch them, and they will have no more excuse or opportunity to finally submit to the will of God.
B. There will be no escape from the judgment of the living God.
1. There will be no trial as we know justice. Because people don’t know the truth of an incident, facts must be gathered, witnesses called, and a determination made as to the truth. This is done because people are not all-knowing, all-wise, and everywhere at the same time.
2. But God has no need of a trial. God is everywhere, so he is witness to everything that people do. God doesn’t need a witness, because He is the witness. God doesn’t need to examine faith, because He has all the facts. He is, after all, all knowing. Therefore, God merely needs to capture those who rebel against Him. He is all-powerful, so that no one will escape His grasp. Once you have been caught, judgment is ready to be executed. The disobedient will be called before God, and He will read the verdict. That will bet he end of it.
C. There will be nothing to expect but angry wrath for those who fall into the hands of the living God.
1. Jesus Christ loves the church, and all of the people who are part of it. The church is his bride. He regards people who have accepted His salvation as his bride. When someone accepts salvation, yet flirts with sin, Jesus becomes a jealous husband. The raging fire is the burning anger of a husband who has learned that his wife is having an affair.
2. Anyone who has fallen into God’s hands will be in the hands of an all-powerful God whose anger burns hot. There is no hope for anyone who has fallen away from obedience to Jesus Christ.
D. The faithful will acknowledge that such a fate is fitting for those who reject the gospel of Jesus Christ.
1. Anyone who rejected the law of Moses was put to death after a proper trial. The law was meant to maintain order. It was meant to show the world God’s righteousness. There is nothing to feel sorry about when someone rejected righteousness.