October 1, 2008 • By Ed Wrather
For whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved. - Romans 10:13.
The summer after I turned 14 years old was the only time I went to a church camp before becoming an adult. It was a great experience, and I know God was speaking to me while I was there. The camp is located in a canyon, and it is very beautiful in the summer. I remember being off by myself sitting on a picnic table one afternoon, and as I was there on the picnic table I began to think about the future. What would happen? I thought I would probably graduate from High School. I wasn't thinking about going to college, so I thought I would probably get a job, get married and we would have children. I wanted to make a lot of money and retire early. Then, I would be old, and finally I came to the point of considering death. I could not see anything after death, it was just all dark, all black.
As I look back on my picnic table experience at church camp it is almost frightening. Why? Because it was five years later before I even seriously thought about what would happen to me after death. Then, I only thought about it after my wife (Jeanie) shared her testimony with me one night. What if she had not shared her testimony? What if no one had? What if I had not married a Christian? What if I had not thought about eternity again?
When we think about salvation many times we say the word, "saved." Or, "I got saved." In Romans 10:13, the Bible does say that if we call on the name of the Lord, we will be "saved." Being saved infers being saved from something. If someone is drowning and rescued, they are saved from death. Spiritually, being "saved" also means being saved from something and specifically it means being saved from spiritual death. I am thankful today that I know that I am "saved." I am thankful that I can look back to a moment in time when in a state of repentance, I called upon the name of the Lord and asked Him to come into my heart and life. Now when I think about death it is not all black out there. Instead I can see the blinding glory of my Lord whose sacrifice has given me eternal life. I know, as did the psalmist, that: "I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever."
There used to be two signs standing on the side of the highway between where I live and Elk City, Oklahoma. The signs along the road are nearly gone now, but I remember well what they said because I passed by them many, many times. The signs said: "After death what then?" "Eternity where?" I remember on the back of one of the signs it said, "Heaven or Hell." Do you know where you will spend eternity? Please don't wait to think about this later because later may never come. Call upon the Name of the Lord Jesus now receiving Him as your Lord and Savior. You will be eternally glad that you did.