I was raised up from a child under the preaching of the gospel. I remember it from my earliest memories. I was taught right and wrong by my parents, and I was taught that I was a sinner. I grew up fairly sensable, not getting into a lot of trouble as a child and a young man. I never got caught up in smoking or drinking, never was into drugs in any way. I didn't lie (too much), didn't steal or cheat. I was a "good" person in the eyes of most people. I was taught that I was a 'sinner'. I knew that I was unsaved and that if I died, I would go to an eternal Hell. Yet, I lived my life unconcerned. Not troubled about my soul. I would go to church on occasion, but nothing moved me to seek after Christ.
I think of John 6:44 "No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him:"I went on until my daughter died on Feb. 4, 2001. I think this is when I began to realize that I could die and drop into Hell. I began to seek after the Christ of the Bible. There were people from my church who would speak to me about being saved, and what it means to be saved. I have been to many other churches and this one was one of the few where I heard the people speak that "being saved is the greatest thing that will ever happen in your life". I wanted the salvation that they have. God began to deal with me. He began to open my understanding and I began to see that I was a sinner, and that I loved the world. The fact that I loved the world was the most obvious thing that God showed me. I never thought that I was caught up in the world like I was. I loved the world and every thing about it, and the love of God was not in me. I came to see that I did not want God and I did not want him to rule over me. I wanted no part of God at all. I wanted my way in all things. I began to see (only by the grace of God) my stubborn will, and how it was contrary to God. I saw myself as a little child who is helpless against his parents and very stubborn. When something is not to his liking, he will yell and stomp his feet and jump around and do whatever he can to show his disapproval. But he is still helpless to do anything more. And yet he will not submit to his parents. I even began to see that I hate God. I hated him because I could not have my own way. This was me, I would not submit to God and I was powerless to do anything to God. I wanted to jump up and down and scream and holler and in general, throw a fit. That's right. That was me. But I praise God that he broke my will and made me willing. As I said before, I was raised up knowing that I was a sinner, and that I was going to hell. But now it became real to me. I am a sinner! I AM A SINNER!! My sins are against a holy God. I never saw that they were against God as I do now. I am reminded of the Psalmist:
Psalms 51:4 Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, and done this evil in thy sight:I also began to see that when God spoke in Genesis 6:5 that He was talking about me.
Gen. 6:5 And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.I used to think "Those people were really bad. Their thoughts were evil continually". Now I can see that it is my thoughts, works and deeds that are only evil continually. I began to see that I was doomed to an eternal hell. I had piled up sin against a holy and just God and judgment day is coming. I began to cry unto God,
Jeremiah 33:3 Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and shew thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not.and he began to draw me to him. My sin became very great in my eyes, and I continued to cry unto God. I could not understand why a holy God did not cut me off and send me straight to hell. I came to see that hell is what I deserve, and that God would be just and fair to send me there. I saw that hell is what I would get if God did not give me a pardon. I came to see that unbelief was one of my greatest sins. I had spent my life in unbelief. I did not believe that God would send me to Hell. I did not believe that he would save me from Hell. I was unconcerned. Jesus Christ had came down from heaven, left his glory above, came to suffer and die that I might be saved, and I DID NOT CARE!! I had scorned his love and his sacrifice, and I had done it for the love of the world. Now I can see what I had done to a loving, just, and holy God. Looking back at this time, I don't know how I was able to function in my every day life, I was so burdened down with sin and grief.
Acts 13:38 Be it known unto you therefore, men and brethren, that through this man is preached unto you the forgiveness of sins: 13:39 And by him all that believe are justified from all things, from which ye could not be justified by the law of Moses.I began to look to Christ for the forgiveness of my sins. There was no one else who could help me. I now see that we must look to Him in faith.
Romans 14:23 for whatsoever is not of faith is sin.I was looking for something tangible or physical to hold on to. Just to believe was not enough for me. I still would not believe. Before I would believe, God himself was going to have to come down from heaven and stand and put his finger in my face and say "Glen Bond, You are saved"!! But God does not do that for us. He is able to bring us to himself.
Isaiah 42:16 And I will bring the blind by a way that they knew not; I will lead them in paths that they have not known: I will make darkness light before them, and crooked things straight. These things will I do unto them, and not forsake them.What a promise! He will bring me. Me a sinner who hates him, who counted his death on the cross as insignificant. I don't understand why he would do anything for me. After He saved me I was able to see that if I knew where He was bringing me I would never have came. He leaves us blind that we may follow Him. If we could see, we would never follow, and not only that but I would have never came to Him if I had seen that it was Him that I was coming to!! I don't understand why, but that is what the Lord showed me, I would have never came to Him if I had seen that it was Him that I was coming to. Then on a Sunday night in June, 2003 ,my Lord and my God, revealed himself to me. I wanted a great revelation, something that would be unmistakable. but God works in his own way, not the way I think. I was sitting in church and the speaker said "This is His word. We must believe it. That is all that we will ever have". Now I had heard these same words many times before. But the great God of the universe decided to use them this time to cause me to believe in Him. I was able to understand that I must believe. I could never understand it before. Now it was plain. God gave me faith to believe. I went home not fully knowing what had happened to me. I went to work the next day and pondered the thing all day. I never said anything to anyone. The next day was the same, but I came to realize that Christ had died for me. By the time I got home that afternoon my heart was rejoicing. I was more happy than at any time in my life. To think that Christ had died that I might live. I wanted to tell someone. I had to tell someone! When I got home my wife was not home, so I went to my parents house about 2 miles away and told my Dad and my Mother. I have been telling everyone that will listen ever since. Jesus Christ died for sinners, and He died for me! Praise His holy name.