Can I Come Out Now?

 If you have ever raised a toddler, you understand that they have a tendency to break the rules.  When this happens, parents will enact different forms of punishment. The discipline could include a verbal reprimand, loss of privileges, time-outs or the “rod” (Proverbs 13:24).  Sometimes parents will send them to their room to cool down. It is not uncommon to hear, within mere minutes, the child asking, “can I come out now?” Children will beg their parents to change their minds, hoping they will not be firm on the punishment.

           Moses in Numbers 20 struck the rock at Meribah to produce water for Israel. God, however, instructed Moses to speak to the rock.  God’s response to Moses was that because he did not treat Him holy in the sight of the sons of Israel, he would not be allowed to enter into the Promised Land (Numbers 20:12; Deuteronomy 32:51-52).  God had given His verdict to Moses for not believing Him. Later on, in Deuteronomy 3:23-28, we read about an interesting exchange between God and Moses. Moses pleaded with God to change His mind and let him cross the Jordan.  God, in response, angrily declares “Enough! Speak to Me no more of this matter” (Deuteronomy 3:26). God was firm and unchanging in His discipline. It would be Joshua, and not Moses, who would lead God’s children into their destination.

           Unfortunately, many on the day of judgment will react towards God similar to Moses and his request for a second chance.  In their minds, surely, God would not send them to an eternal punishment (Matthew 25:46). Or, maybe they can convince Him to reconsider or be lenient on them.  This, of course, will not be the case (Matthew 7:21-23; 2 Thessalonians 1:8). A divine standard has been given to us to follow and obey (John 12:48). God will not accept any of our pleading (Acts 17:30-31). There will be no reason to ask, “can I come out now?”

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