“If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned.”
If you do not abide in Christ, your life is worthless. I wish that truth was softer, but Scripture makes it clear what happens to those who refuse Christ; they are good for nothing accept to be burned. In other words, they are good for nothing accept to be destroyed.
This is a difficult truth. Does my father who does not believe go to hell? Yes. How can I explain this to him without hurting him? Think about that for just a moment. If you do not know Jesus, I am sure you are already hurt by what is written. If you do know Christ, then I am sure you have had that awkward moment when a non-believer asked you if he will go to hell.
The only way I know to help people understand this truth is to realize what it means if you reject Jesus. When you reject Jesus, you reject what He stands for. Jesus tells us to live a life of righteousness, compassion, and justice. He teaches us to love God and love our neighbor as ourselves. He teaches us to pour out our lives in service to others. So, if you reject this way of life, what way of life are you embracing?
Jesus teaches us to do good. When we do good, we bear good fruit. If you reject Him and His teachings, then you are saying that you do not want that for your life. You are saying that your way is better than living a righteous life. You are saying that you do not want to bear good fruit in your life. Would God be righteous if He accepted the bad fruit along with the good fruit?
The truth is, everything God does is good. Evil, then, is everything that God would not do. Once you understand that God is good, then you can see that anything outside of God’s will is evil. Simply put, if it is not good, then it is evil. So, if you reject that which is good, God, then what have you accepted?