Just This One Time…
By: Brian A. Yeager
A man is having a rough day. He has had multiple problems at work. He comes home to problems with his wife (cf. Proverbs 21:9, Proverbs 21:19, and Proverbs 25:24). His children are acting foolishly. He wants to just find a way to rid himself of all these problems. This man decides he wants to head to a local bar and “get out of his mind” through alcohol. He knows this is wrong. He doesn’t need to read the many Scriptures that say it’s wrong (i.e. Proverbs 20:1, Proverbs 21:17, Proverbs 23:20-21, Proverbs 23:29-35, Proverbs 31:4-5, Isaiah 5:11, Isaiah 5:22, Isaiah 28:7-8, Hosea 4:11, Habakkuk 2:15, Matthew 26:41, Luke 21:33, Romans 13:13, Ephesians 5:17-18, I Thessalonians 5:7-8, Titus 2:1-6, I Peter 4:1-5, and I Peter 5:8). He just knows it in his conscience. Yet, he opts to defile his conscience. He reasons it out and justifies it by thinking it’ll just be a one time thing.
Maybe you or someone you know has reasoned like this before. What would have happened to the man, who ignorantly decided to drink “just this one time”, if he were to die in his sin (I Corinthians 6:9-10)? Here is another consideration; what if the Lord were to return while this man was drinking away his “one time” drunken desires? This man, like all of us, will stand accountable for our actions when Christ returns (Matthew 25:31-46, John 5:28-29, and II Corinthians 5:10). This man would meet the Lord at a time wherein he is unable to repent of his sins for time to do so will have ended (Matthew 25:1-13). Thus, he will face the vengeance of our Lord (II Thessalonians 1:7-9).
Can you see the ignorance of those whom think with carelessness about their souls? Can you see the foolishness of acting like you can sin freely without fear of the immediate consequences? Since the Lord has not come back in nearly two thousand years, people think as though they always have tomorrow. We can see that they think ignorantly in this regard, but what about us? While we may not have the “just this one time” mentality, do we have the same thinking behind it? Do we discount the seriousness of being ready every moment to stand before the Lord in judgment?
Always Ready To Meet The Lord
Consider that the downplaying of the coming of Christ is not a new way of thought. Notice: “Knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts, And saying, Where is the promise of his coming? for since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of the creation. For this they willingly are ignorant of, that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of the water and in the water: Whereby the world that then was, being overflowed with water, perished: But the heavens and the earth, which are now, by the same word are kept in store, reserved unto fire against the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men. But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up. Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness, Looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of God, wherein the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat? Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness. Wherefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for such things, be diligent that ye may be found of him in peace, without spot, and blameless” (II Peter 3:3-14).
No one knows when the Lord will return and judge the world (Matthew 24:35-36). His coming will be a surprise (Matthew 24:42-51). Men have long enjoyed testing God and acting as though they can get away with anything (Zephaniah 1:12). We have heard phrases such as: “don’t play with fire you’ll get burned”. Those who act like they can do anything they want without fear of judgment from God have ignored that our God is a consuming fire (Hebrews 12:29). It is a fearful thing to fall into His hands (Hebrews 10:26-31).
Understanding that the Lord can come at any time and His judgment is not to be taken lightly, should we be comfortable being in sin at any time? What about doing something sinful “just this one time”? Is it a good idea to gamble with your soul just once? Jesus asked, “…what shall a man give in exchange for his soul” (Matthew 16:26)? Do you have a “just once” answer to that question?
What One-Time Experience Would Be Worth Losing Your Soul Over?
Is there something you want to do so badly that it’d be worth the eternal price you’d pay to do it? Jesus taught that it would be better to cut off your hand, pluck out your eye, cut off your foot, etc. than to spend eternity in Hell (Matthew 5:27-30 and Mark 9:43-48). Think about that. Hell is an “everlasting fire” (Matthew 25:41) and those whom are in sin at the coming of our Lord will go into that everlasting punishment (Matthew 25:46). What is worth that to you? We count the cost of being followers of the Lord (Luke 14:25-33). We should also count the cost of choosing to sin (Romans 6:23).
We should live as though every moment is the last moment you will be alive (Luke 12:13-21). Life is compared to a temporary vapor (James 4:13-16). Doing anything just one time could be your last time (Proverbs 27:1)!
We can see that thinking sinning, “just this one time”, is okay is a fallible thought. The errors of those of the past show us that “just one time” of sin can be the last time you do anything in this world (II Samuel 6:6-7 and Acts 5:1-10). Just this one time, confess your error of this thinking if need be (I John 1:9). Just this one time, repent of this error of thinking if need be (Acts 8:22). I say, “just this one time” in regard to these two things, for if you do them right “just this one time”, you will never again have to deal with the erring mentality we have addressed in this study. Just this one time, get right for all times to come from here forward!
Volume 16 – Issue 38 - June 5th, 2016