“If you could do it over again, would you do anything different?” This is a common question asked to many coaches after the loss of a big game. With all the responses that are possible to this question the fact remains the same, no matter what one might have done, once the final second of the game is counted the game is over. What has happened is now history and the only thing to be done is to prepare for the next week. Life is very much like this illustration.
Once one has breathed his last breath his life is over, and nothing can be changed and there will not be a time to prepare again. The Hebrews writer wrote, “And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment” (Heb. 9:27). And on the Day of Judgment there will be individuals who will have this same thought, “If I could do it over again, I do things differently.
Some who will consider this question are those who were accountable, but never obeyed the gospel. They knew right from wrong, they understood they were not following God. Paul wrote, “when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels, In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ” (2 Thess. 1:7,8). Some of these individuals may have been taught the truth while they were alive, and they may be aware of passages such as Mark 16:16 and 1 Peter 3:21. But they did not believe, because they did not obey, and their unbelief will cause them to be lost (Rev. 21:8).
There are others who simply reject the truth because their family may have always been a member of a denomination (John 12:42). They fail to see the need to check into what the Bible has to say. It is good to trust family, but they are human not divine (2 Tim. 2:15). Humans make mistakes.
In Matthew fifteen, Jesus said that people were worshipping in vain because they taught the doctrines of men and not His. This should help all to see the necessity of knowing for sure what God wants and not just hoping things are right. Jeremiah wrote, “O Lord, I know that the way of man is not in himself: it is not in man that walketh to direct his steps.”
God has given man the Bible so man can know what God desires of man. God wants the best for man. God has never asked man to do something that would be harmful to him.
One other group that will be wishing they had done things differently are those who seek to be religious but fail to do God’s will. Jesus taught this and Matthew recorded in Matthew 7:21 – 23. “Not everyone that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.
Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity”. What a shame to live a decent life only to find at judgment that you had not done God’s will as He wanted.
Everyone needs to read, study, and obey God’s will. It may mean getting some help even as the Ethiopian Eunuch did in Acts 8.
Eternity is to long and the fires of hell to hot to guess about eternity.