Pastoral Perspectives

Entry and No-Entry Signs!

My son likes road signs.  He even asked my wife to buy a book entitled, “The New Highway Code Book 1: Basic Theory of Driving” for him.  He enjoys learning different road signs in that book.  There are mandatory signs, prohibitory signs, information signs and warning signs.  There are two signs which caught my attention: entry and no-entry signs.  These signs are visible to us.  When a car arrives at a car park, the driver immediately sees an entry sign.  Sometimes a lane or small road may have a no-entry sign, indicating that no car is allowed to enter that lane or road.

In our Christian life, there are also many visible and invisible entry and no-entry signs.  In fact, God has put them there in our life for His purpose.  It is not easy to recognise and identify which is which.  There is a vital need for us to always keep in touch with God to know His precious Word well in order to discover those entry and no-entry signs for our personal life.  As the entry and no-entry signs are not that obvious in our life, unlike the visible entry and no-entry signs we see on the road or in the car park, we need to carefully and diligently search out God’s Word for the locations of those entry and no-entry signs in our life.  In John 5: 39, 40, the Word of God says, “You diligently study the Scriptures because you think that by them you possess eternal life.  These are the Scriptures that testify about Me, yet you refuse to come to Me to have life.”

I personally believe that God will only put entry signs in those areas of our life which will bring glory and honour to His Name.  He will put no-entry signs in those areas of our life that will destroy us and that are detrimental to our physical, emotional and spiritual life, that is, our total life.  He will place entry signs in those areas of our life that will mould us into His likeness.

When God had already put a no-entry sign, let us not be stubborn or disobedient by replacing it with an entry sign to satisfy our selfish and sinful desires.  The consequences of entering into a no-entry path where we see a prohibitory sign of no-entry bring great destruction to our lives, which is a very costly price to pay for the action done.  The Word of God says, “Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked.  A man reaps what he sows.  The one who sows to please his sinful nature, from that nature will reap destruction; the one who sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life.” Galatians 6: 7, 8 NIV.  These verses clearly indicate the entry and no-entry signs in our Christian life.  If we continue to gratify our sinful nature, we will bring destruction to ourselves.  These are the no-entry signs which we should not move into.  If we often seek ways to please the Spirit of God in our life, we will be prosperous and successful.  In what ways are we prosperous and successful?  By obeying the Word of God in our life, we are doing that which pleases the Spirit of God.  Joshua 1: 8 teaches us that if we meditate on the Word of God consistently and then practice it in our Christian life, we will be prosperous and successful.  If you saw someone in real financial crisis and you have the means to help, will you offer that help when required of you?  Many of us, perhaps, are not ready to reach out to those in such need.  In such instance, I wonder how we are going to practice 1 John 3: 17 in our life.  I like what Proverbs 19: 17 says, “He who is kind to the poor lends to the LORD, and He will reward him for what he has done.”  This is another entry sign which we should embark on.

When our God says, “Yes” concerning certain matters in our lives, let us not say, “No”.  When our God says, “No” to certain things in our lives, let us not to become rebellious and say, “Yes”.  We need to rely on the grace of God to say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and then say “Yes” to living out a self-controlled, upright and godly life. (Titus 2: 11, 12).

In God’s Word, there are many entry and no-entry signs.  These signs are there to instruct us as to what actions we should take.  Indeed, as the Psalmist said, “Your Word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path.” Psalm 119: 105.  Let the Word of God direct us as to how we should live and where we should go.  The Word of God instructs us to enter the narrow gate that leads to life.  In Matthew 7: 13, 14, the Word of God says, “Enter through the narrow gate.  For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it.  But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.”  Here is another entry sign, “Enter through the narrow gate”, for us to take note of.

Let us remember that entry signs lead us to safety and success and no-entry signs lead us to destruction.  Having a good grasp of the Scripture will help us to discern these two signs in our Christian life.

Preacher George Ang

July 31, 2011