Summary: So often we hear stories about dying and coming to the golden gate and dickering with Peter whether we should be allowed in or not. This would be a tragic mistake to wait until you die to find out if you can get in.

Everybody wants to get in on the action. Back in 1982 a crowd began to form one Monday

afternoon in December at the River Front Coliseum in Cincinnati. By the time the police arrived at

3:00 P.M., hundreds of fans had gathered at the doors, even though they would not open until 7:00

P.M. The rock group called The Who was to play a concert, and masses of people wanted in. By

early evening 8 thousand people were pressing against the doors. The crowd became restless, and

somebody broke out a glass and opened a door. The mob surged forward. The police could not stop

it, and those who lost their footing were as helpless as if they were in a cattle stampede. After the

crowd had passed in, 11 people were left dead, and 8 severely injured. That is just how badly people

want to get in some places. It is as if their life depended upon getting in.

It is important to people to get in. They wait in lines all the time to get into a favorite restaurant,

or into a movie, or some sporting event. They wait to get into a store, a doctor, or into a line of

traffic that is moving. Nobody wants to be left out, and everybody wants to get in somewhere. It

can be very embarrassing to be shut out, or to even get just half way in. A young man in

Philadelphia was attempting to get into a store at night to rob it. He removed two bolts from the

security bars of a window, and began to crawl in. One of the bars came crashing down, and he was

trapped. Half of his body was inside the store, and half was dangling outside. It was a real

dilemma. He could hang there, or call for help. After a long struggle, he decided to call the

emergency 911 number on a phone he could just barely reach. He was terribly embarrassed when

the police arrived. He confessed it was his first burglary, and he just couldn't make it in.

It is hard not to be in the in-crowd. That is what the American dream is all about-get in with the

best crowd. Get in on the real estate bonanza. Get in on the life style of the rich and famous. We

are bombarded by all the media with the message-come with us, follow us, and we will lead the way

to get you in. The theme of politics is, getting in. After all, what good are the best candidates in the

world if they can't get into office. You have to get in to have power, and so the name of the game is

getting in. Every student has to be concerned about getting into college, and then getting into the

right program, and then doing well enough to get into the profession he is aiming for. Life is just

one struggle after another to get in.

The refugees of the world are struggling to get in on the affluence of the West. So many cross the

borders from Mexico and Central America to get into the U. S. Masses are planning, plotting, and

carrying out those plans to get into this country, legally or illegally, because the goal of their life

revolves around getting in. God understand this quest of man to get in, for that is God's goal for

man also. God wants to get him into that which fulfills all of his dreams, hopes, and desires. The

goal of God is to get men into the kingdom of God. The goal of Jesus is to get into the lives of men.

He said, "Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If any man hears my voice and opens the door I

will come in." Jesus wants in, because He wants to bring people into His Father's kingdom. This is

the highest goal that man can achieve, the letting of Jesus in so they can get in where the whole

purpose of life is fulfilled. Getting into God's family, and getting into heaven is where it is at. It is

getting in where God wants us to get in.

So often we hear stories about dying and coming to the golden gate and dickering with Peter

whether we should be allowed in or not. This would be a tragic mistake to wait until you die to find

out if you can get in. The Bible says it is too late then, and if you die before you know the way in,

you are out forever. That is the hell of missing heaven. It is to be out with no hope of getting in, and

that is our destiny, to get in. To get in anywhere you have to go through the door. There is only one

door to God, to heaven, and into the family of God, and that door is Jesus. He said, "I am the Door."

He also said, "I am the Way the Truth and the Life, no man comes to the Father but by Me." There

is only one way in. There is no possible way to break in by some other door, for there is no other

door. The revelation of God is clear, Jesus is the Way, and the only Way.

Some people wait until they have a crisis in their life to come to Christ. We see it even in the

Bible. The thief on the cross was near death when he turned to Christ, and asked to be remembered

when Jesus came into His kingdom. Jesus said He would be with him in paradise, and so he got in

just at the last moment. The Philippian jailer thought his prisoners had escaped and he would be

killed for allowing it, and so he was about to kill himself. Paul intervened and showed that the

prisoners were all there. The jailer said, "What must I do to be saved?" In other words, how can I

get in on what you men have? And Paul said, "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be

saved." He was so near suicide, and being shut out of God's kingdom forever, but in the crisis he

believed in Jesus, and he made it in.

Richard Hillary was one of those spit fire pilots in World War II that Churchill was talking about

when he said, "Never was so much owed to so few." He was shot down, and parachuted into the

English Channel, and was so badly burned he wanted to die. He thought about the stupidity of war,

and wondered what the purpose of life was all about. His mind was forced to think of God as the

only reality that could make sense of life, and he found peace as he surrendered to God. He was

miraculously found and rescued. He made it back into life, but more important for him, he made it

into the kingdom of God. His name was written down in God's book as a child of the King, a

member of the family of the redeemed. We all need to ask ourselves-

Is my name written there,

On the page bright and fair?

In the book of God's kingdom,

Is my name written there?

Will you make it in? That is the question of all areas of life, and most important, it is the

question of eternal life. Will you make it into that kingdom where sin, sorrow, death, and folly will

be no more? You don't have to wait for a crisis. In fact, that is very risky, for people do not get in

automatically just because they have a crisis. The best time to get into the kingdom is always right

now, for now is always the day of salvation. The greatest question of life is, how do we get into

heaven, and into the family of God? Jesus says you get in by giving in. You open your life to Him,

and let Him in. You listen for that knock He makes on the door of your heart when the good news

of the Gospel is preached. You stop trying to be your own savior and surrender to Him. He wants

in because only as He gets in, can He get you in. You let Him in, and He lets you in.

To be born is to get into this world. To be born again is to get into the world to come, which has

already begun. To be saved is to taste of the world to come. The greatest mistake of life is to miss

the chance to get in on God's best. The greatest wisdom of life is to grab at the chance to get in on

God's best. Jesus holds the pen that can write your name in the book of life, and He holds the key

that can let you in to the house of God.

Even people who think they want out, really want in. Albert Camus wrote The Plague. It is

about the town of Oran where the rats began to come out of dark places to die in the streets, and then

people began to die the same way. People were dying so fast they were hauling them to the dumps.

The town was quarantined, and nobody could get in or out. Dr. Bernard Rieux was the town doctor,

and it never occurred to him to get out. He was so busy caring for people. A journalist, named

Raymond Rambert, was caught in Oran, but he wanted out desperately. But there was no escape,

and so he went on the daily rounds with Dr. Rieux. He was trying to save some of the people, and

especially children, so Raymond pitched in and did what he could.

One day a person who was a smuggler offered Rambert a chance to get out for a price, but he

decided to stay. Why stay asked the doctor? You have a right to get out and be happy. Rambert

explained that he was happy there, for he no longer felt like a stranger, but he felt like he belonged.

The point of the story is, you can be happy even in a plague infested world if you know you belong,

for that feeling of being in on the family is what life is all about. Life can be hell, but if you know

you are in the family of God, and you belong to the only family that will live together forever, you

can have peace and be happy even in this plague infested life. All people are in two classes: The

whosoever wills, and the whosoever won'ts. The whosoever wills receive Christ as their Savior, and

they get the greatest gift man can receive. They receive the gift of getting in, and getting in forever.

Now is the time to ask Jesus to be your Lord and Savior, and enter into God's family.