The internet is all a buzz over the death of Osama bin Laden, and for good reason. There is cause for celebration in that a dangerous terrorist and murderer can no longer pose a threat to humanity. We can be thankful for this. While I'm not going to bother going over the ins and outs of how a Christian should respond to such events, many posts have already been written by much more learned men such as Piper and Mohler, I do want to address one issue in particular.
Why do you believe Osama bin Laden deserves to be in Hell any more than you?
This happens every time. Some one who is considered to be undeniably evil by all dies, and many begin to joyously proclaim his immediate reception into Hell. We can easily see that bin Laden with his acts of violence and hatred is deserving of hell, but what about you? Why do so many think that he will burn, and yet not they themselves? Was Osama in more danger of Hell's fire than any of us? How can we cheer his condemnation without fearing our own?
How many sins does it take?
How many murders, lies, lust, or anger does it take to be denied Heaven and be sentenced to eternal torment? Is there a number? James tells us
"whoever keeps the whole law but fails in one point has become accountable for all of it." (James 2:10)Before a Holy God our guilt will stand regardless if it is "little" or "great." Romans 3 states that
"all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God." (v23) There is none righteous, no, not one. (v10)Scripture makes it clear that all of us are guilty enough for Hell. That includes Osama bin Laden, Mother Teresa, and You.
So before you celebrate bin Laden's entrance into eternal torment, make sure you're not headed there yourself.
Who then can be saved?
And this is the testimony, that God gave us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life. (1 John 5:11-12)Do you have the Son?
For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God. (John 3:17-18)
if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved. (Romans 10:9-10)
For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” (Romans 10:13)