Grace Mercy and Forgiveness
There is only one perfect person who ever lived on this planet. Every day we as Christians strive to be like Him and we sometimes fail. When we fail we have to ask for forgiveness, if we do not then we cannot be redeemed by the grace and mercy of the Lord Jesus Christ and receive our reward. One example is the apostle Peter. He denied Jesus 3 times when he was confronted by those who were persecuting the Lord. Peter was full of remorse and guilt for what he had done.
Mt 26:75 - "And Peter remembered the word of Jesus, which said unto him, Before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice."
However, he asked for mercy and to be forgiven and by the grace of God he was. Now on the other hand there was the one who betrayed the Lord and gave Him up to the soldiers with a kiss. Judas knew he had done something horrible as soon as they took Jesus away. He tried to give back the payment that was made to him for turning Jesus over. Judas was in misery and yet he did not ask for forgiveness from God. Instead he just lay in his misery and remorse. He found he could not live with this thing he had done and he killed himself, losing every hope of redemption.
"Satan entered into him" (John 13:27) and he betrayed our Lord (John 18:3.) Afterwards he owned his sin with "an exceeding bitter cry," and cast the money he had received as the wages of his iniquity down on the floor of the sanctuary, and "departed and went and hanged himself" (Mt 27:5.) He perished in his guilt, and "went unto his own place." If he would have asked to be forgiven God would have had mercy on him and by grace he could have been forgiven.
Acts 26:18 "To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me."
However difficult it is to believe, God would have forgiven Judas as he did Peter. Now we are sure where Judas and others who take their own lives, or choose to deny the Lord and worship themselves and this world, will dwell for eternity. Why is it necessary to have hell? Because there is a penalty to pay for not obeying the word of God. Jesus died so we could be saved from that place. Why is it necessary to have heaven? So that we could repent, be redeemed by mercy, be given the gift of grace and the reward of everlasting life. Knowing this, how could you not choose everlasting life with Jesus in heaven? The choice is ours to make, what will you choose?
2 Peter 3:18 But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and forever. Amen.