The welcome mat of heaven

By Dave Henning / August 3, 2022

Whoever unfurls [John] 3:16 as a banner for the ages.  Whoever unrolls the welcome mat of heaven to humanity. . . . invites the world to God.  Jesus could have easily narrowed the scope, changing whoever into whatever. . . .  But he used no qualifier.  The pronoun is wonderfully indefinite.  After all, who isn’t a whoever?”- Max Lucado

“Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.”- Matthew 10:39 (NIV)

In Chapter 7 (“Heaven’s ‘Whoever’ Policy”) of 3:16 – The Numbers of Hope, Max Lucado talks about a foreigner in London, England.  Cleopatra’s Needle.  Constructed 3,500 years ago as a gift for an Egyptian pharaoh, the British government planted it on British soil September 12, 1878.  It stands vigil over the Thames River.

Furthermore, Cleopatra’s Needle contains a time capsule in her base.  A slice of Victorian England, the capsule contains, among other things, children’s toys and a city directory.  Most significantly, the time capsule contains one Bible verse, written in 215 languages — John 3:16.

Above all, Pastor Lucado stresses, the word whoever sledgehammers racial fences, dynamites social classes, and surpasses ancient traditions.  Therefore, for those who attempt to restrict God’s grace, Jesus has one word for them: Whoever.

And we truly need to know that God’s gospel includes a forever policy.  Because when life’s downturns create a sad state of affairs, we tend to wonder if God still wants us.

In addition, Max underscores, God’s ‘whoever’ policy comes with a ‘however’ rider.  Also, it features a ‘whenever’ clause.  As a result, whenever you hear God’s voice, He welcomes your response.  and wherever you are, you’re not too far to come home.  No need to clean up or climb up.  Just look up.

In conclusion, Pastor Lucado observes:

“We lose much in life. . . .  We lose much, but we never lose our place on God’s ‘whoever’ list.  Whoever — God’s wonderful word of welcome. . . .  No status too low.  No hour too late. . . .  place too far.  However.  Whenever.  Wherever.  Whoever includes you . . . forever.”

Today’s question: Do you ever doubt that God puts out the welcome mat of heaven for you?  Please share.

Tomorrow’s blog: “Popular Opinion 1:1 – our own Bible verse”

About the author

Dave Henning

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