[Jesus] will punish those who do not know God and do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. They will be punished with everlasting destruction and shut out from the presence of the Lord and from the majesty of his power on the day he comes to be glorified in his holy people and to be marveled at among all those who have believed. This includes you, because you believed our testimony to you.
2 Thessalonians 1:8-10
Riding on His Coattails
“No fair!” That’s a pretty typical response from those who believe they’re receiving the short end of the stick. “No fair!” will be the go-to response for unbelievers on the day Jesus returns in judgment. They won’t like what Jesus has to say to them. They’ll fight it, but their arguments won’t win the day. Jesus’ judgment is always fair and always right. His justice is perfect.
This is why we might be surprised at who faces his judgment on that epic day. Jesus once said, “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and, in your name, perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’” (Matthew 7:21-23) Jesus isn’t fooled by outward good deeds. Those can be faked. He searches people’s hearts and looks for a humble faith that trusts in what he has done to save them, not in what they have done to save themselves. His perfect life and sacrificial death are what make people right with God and what will allow them to spend their eternity with him. No truer words have been spoken than these: believers will enjoy eternal life in heaven because they are riding on Jesus’ coattails.
But here’s the thing: Jesus hasn’t just won salvation for a select few. He is everyone’s Savior. He is your Savior. Take a ride on his coattails.
Jesus, help me put my trust in you alone. Amen.