The News Conference 1

The auditorium is packed. People are seated elbow to elbow as far as you can see to your proper and left. At least twenty rows of seats are before you, and an unknown number lie in again of you. It’s an outstanding collection.

You observe that every person appears to be wearing a few name tag forms with such emblems as FOX, CNN, NBC, CBS, and Associated Press. The crowd includes newshounds, journalists, TV anchorwomen and men, and correspondents.

The News Conference

They are mumbling excitingly, often glancing up at the podium on the degree. After a few minutes, a huge man wearing a rumpled tweed healthy walks throughout the platform. He steps up to the microphone, and a sudden hush falls over the crowd of journalists.

“People frequently consider Christian morality as a bargain in which God says, ‘If you maintain a lot of guidelines, I’ll praise you; in case you do not, I’ll do the opposite element.’ I do not assume this is the best way to look at it.

“I would have a good deal rather say that every time you make a preference, you are turning the principal part of you, the part that chooses, into something distinct from what it was before. And taking your life as a whole, with all of your innumerable choices, all your lifestyles long, you are slowly turning this imperative element either right into a heavenly creature or right into a hellish creature: either right into a beast that is in concord with God, and with other animals, and with itself, otherwise into one that is in a country of warfare and hatred with God, and with its fellow-creatures, and with itself.

“Before the days of Christ, our expertise of truth become limited. We had been born seemingly via no desire of our personal. We lived for a few years. Then we died. Where we went from right here, nobody knew. Death became a veil at the back of which we could not see. It’s viable that near-dying experiences gave some historical human beings a short peek at what transpired during and right now after the loss of life. But what followed that fleeting glimpse remained a thriller.

“Then, Jesus Christ enters the image. He says he’s the Son of God. He claims he has been around because earlier than the creation of the sector. And he tells us he is a professional on humanity. He knows why we are right here, what we must do with our lives, and what occurs to us after the loss of life.

“Jesus speaks with authority. He acts like he is aware of what he is talking about and does things no normal human can do: strolling on water, giving sight to people born blind, and raising the useless lower back to lifestyles. You can not ignore a man like that.

“Then, we find the most first-rate collection of activities in all of the recorded records. Jesus tells us he is the Son of God, and he’ll prove it past all doubt. He says he will die and upward push from the grave on the third day. He does die. And he rises from death on the third day. We have seen the proof. “When Jesus fulfilled that promise, he proved information, strength, and authority far past that of any mortal. Here we see One greater than all the kings, prophets, and philosophers.

“Jesus is our closing authority. He is our supply of truth. There is not any difference. Why are we here? Jesus offers us the answer. How should we conduct our lives? See what Jesus says and follow it. That is the high-quality advice each person can give. What about the loss of life? Jesus knows what lies in the back of that closed door and tells us about it. Listen to him.” Lewis stops. He bows his head. Is he gathering his mind or praying? I do not know. But in any other second, he speaks once more.

“Some people have the flawed concept that Christ is a benign grandfather who will pat you on the pinnacle and say, ‘There, there, it’s pretty all proper,’ no matter what you do. Those humans will be in for an unpleasant surprise.

“Others suppose that Jesus is come what may our same, and he’s open to bargaining. That, too, is inaccurate. Jesus is not identical. He is our superior in every experience of the word. His laws aren’t hints. They are orders. He failed to inform us to make up our policies as we move alongside. He says to follow his commands. He didn’t tell us that his views on life and demise are just one way of searching for things. He says here is true. This is the way things are. If you need eternal lifestyles, you may do as I say.

“Many do now not need to listen to that message to today cramps their fashion; it limits their independence. It throws cold water on their pleasure and ego. To those human beings, we must say it’s time to develop. You aren’t an independent agent; you are a created being. And Christ is the one who breathed existence into you. So forget pride and ego.

“Fifty years from now, your pleasure and ego may be buried in a box six ft deep with a skeleton and a bit of dust. By then, if we can recall our pompous little vanities, we can chuck them at them.”

Then, to my amazement, C.S. Lewis’ body and clothes glow. In a fragment of a 2d, he vanishes into thin air! Many exciting whispers run thru the crowd. “What took place?” “Did you see that?” “Where did he cross?”

For an instantaneous, the degree is bare. Then a large, vibrant sparkling light appears in the podium’s back. In the blink of an eye, the light becomes a figure, a parent in white. His garments glisten like lightning. His pores and skin areare white as snow, and his eyes are dark as coal. Immediately I realize the identification of the Man in white. Standing before us is Jesus Christ.

An excited murmur runs through the auditorium design, however quickly subsides, for we see Jesus is ready to speak.

Jesus: “The kingdom of heaven is your most effective purpose. This is your sole reason for being here. The wise amongst you may heed my words. You will make each sacrifice to acquire this praise.

“Here is my command: love one another. Love your neighbor as yourself. Forgive people who wrong you, and repay right for evil. Make certain of your salvation. Practice faith, goodness, understanding, the strength of will, perseverance, godliness, and brotherly kindness, and you will acquire a rich welcome into the everlasting country of heaven.

“What can examine together with your soul, your eternal life? Pleasures, riches, or honours inside the international? All of them quickly vanish. Your soul is the most effective thing that survives demise. Your daily choices are slowly, bit by bit, turning you into a heavenly spirit destined for everlasting existence. Or your selections are transforming you into a monster in shape most effective for destruction.”

I couldn’t see her, but from her voice, a younger woman asked the first query, “When we die, do we go to heaven, Jesus?”

Jesus: “Enter thru the narrow gate. For extensive are the gate and huge the street that ends in destruction, and plenty of entering thru it. But small is the gate and slim the street that leads to the existence, and only a few discover it.”

A lady News reporter towards the front of the auditorium design stands up and says: “TodToday have any quantity of churches coaching and training a huge type of doctrines. They all claim to be your church. Is one greater genuine than the others?”

Jesus: “My choice has always been that everyone who considers me may be one, without division, and united within the faith, simply as my Father and I are one. I will tell you the reality. My church is the church that remains devoted to my gospel. I died bearing the sins of this international. On the 0.33 day, I rose from the grave. I am the one and simplest direction to my Father in heaven.

“Those who educate and accept as true with these things are individuals of my church body. Those who deny this doctrine could be denied earlier than my Father on judgment day. It might be better for them if they had never heard of my call.”

The subsequent query: “Many nowadays adhere to a ‘social gospel’, one that reflects state-of-the-art attitudes along with identical rights for girls and minorities and social concerns with poverty, discrimination, and prejudice.

“What needs to be the church’s function in these subjects?”

“Did you not hear?” replies Jesus. “I threw the money changers out of the temple because they had been using the residence of God to make an income. The church is not a business organization for use in making a living. Nor is it a political organization for use for advancing social causes. It is a body of believers called to worship and glorify God. It is my frame.

“I died on the cross to present every considered one of you an opportunity for everlasting lifestyles. My message is open for all who will obey: black, brown, purple, white, or yellow; male or woman; younger or antique; wealthy or terrible; terrific or small.

“Do now not use my name to sell your schedule.

“Women are not similar to guys. Their duties are not the same inside the domestic or in church. As for the bad, did I now not let you know you would always have the negative with you? Didn’t I urge you to help individuals who want your help? But did not Paul give you this rule: ‘If a person does not work, he shall now not eat’?

“I let you know, if all people do now not offer for his relatives, specifically for his on-the-spot circle of relatives, he has denied the religion and is worse than an unbeliever.

An e-news reporter from the front row asks, “I even have heard it stated that we are saved with the aid of faith alone, now not through works. Would you care to touch upon that?”

Jesus: “You do now not apprehend the Scriptures. Faith without deeds is useless. Even the demons consider God; they agree with and shudder. As for works, whose works are excellent sufficient? No one is ideal, not even one. All have sinned and fallen brief of the honor of God.

“How, then, can everyone be saved? Salvation is the handiest possible using the grace of God through the death and resurrection of the Son of Man. That is God’s presence in humanity. Man has to respond to God’s grace, using obedience to His will. Your religion is made whole via what you do.

“Do you no longer remember the myth of the sheep and goats? On the day of judgment, I will divide the living and the dead into sheep and goats. The sheep feed the hungry, give drink to the thirsty, clothe people who want to dress, invite the stranger, contend with the sick, and help individuals who wish their assistance.

“I tell you the truth; the righteous show their faith thru their true deeds. They are saved. The goats are the ones who fail to act. They are the damned.”

A woman stands up and says: “Just the other day, proper wing lovers have been picketing abortion clinics again. The courts have dominated that is a contravention of a regulation. Surely, you disapprove of such il… ”

Jesus: “Do not homicide! That is God’s law.”

“But a fetus is not… ”

Jesus: “DO NOT MURDER! Taking innocent lives is homicide. The cowardly, the unbelieving, the vile, the murderers, the sexually immoral, individuals who exercise magic arts, the idolaters, and all liars – their place could be inside the fiery lake of burning sulfur. That is the second one who died.”

The authority and strength of Christ’s voice were not to be wondered. The e-news reporters quickly take her seat.

Then a person says to Christ: “Some TV evangelists condemn homosexuals. Are they now not our brothers too?”

Jesus: “Man rejected God and worshipped created things. For this sin, God gave Men and female over to shameful lust for their sex. Their indecent acts are perversions, and they acquire in themselves the due penalty for their misdeeds.

“Isn’t it clean? My kingdom does now not belong to the wicked. Homosexuals, adulterers, thieves, drunkards, slanderers, swindlers, and the greedy will not inherit the dominion of God.”

A younger lady asks: “Why do appropriate people suffer pain and worry about this existence?”

Jesus: “I field the ones I love, as a father disciplines his son. No discipline appears high-quality on time but painful. Later it produces blessings for the ones who’ve been trained using it. As the heart tempers metal, so field builds electricity and person.

“However, maximum problems you stumble upon in lifestyles aren’t according to my will. Some come immediately from Satan. He inflicts anything trouble he can on my faithful fans. On the day of judgment, he might be thrown alive into the pit of hell.

“I tell you the reality, lots of life’s sorrows are added by using the guy himself. People are unfastened to choose proper or incorrect, and people’s picks have real results. Liars, murderers, swindlers, thieves, and bullies spread their distress anywhere they pass. On the day of judgment, the ones who have suffered unjustly will be compensated. As for people who abuse them, I tell you, they’ll be punished maximum critically.”

Someone in the again of the auditorium design yells, “Can Christians lose their salvation?”

Jesus: “Did I not let you know the parable of the seed? The seed that fell on the rocky soil have been those who obtain my phrase with joy after they hear it; however, in time of testing, they fall away. Is that parable not clear?

“And did I now not warn you that on the quit of the age, many will flip from the religion and will betray and hate each different? How can I say it plainer than that?

“Moreover, I failed to say that because of the growth in immorality, the affection of maximum will develop cold; however, whoever stands firm to the stop could be stored. Surely you apprehend those phrases!

“Do you find these words ambiguous? Tell me, how would you interpret what I have said?”

“I could say,” replied the journalist, “no one has assured something apart from you may decide them by way of what they do.”

Jesus: “You have spoken back properly. I am he who searches hearts and minds, and I will pay off each of you in keeping with your deeds.”

An older guy rises to his feet and says: “Almost one out of marriages ends in divorce today. Do you suggest for us?”

Jesus: “I hate divorce. At the start of Advent, God made them male and woman. For this reason, a man will leave his mother and Father and be united with his wife, and the two shall become one flesh. What God has joined collectively, permit nobody separate.”

The subsequent question: “Some government has stated the worst sin is pride, and different failings along with intercourse earlier than or out of doors of marriage are lesser sins. What do you are saying?”

Jesus: “Adulterers and fornicators will now not see heaven.”

A woman in the back of me addresses Jesus: “Women have come a long way during the last few generations. We aren’t going to show back now and end up 2nd magnificence residents again. Women are every bit as accurate as guys. Why shouldn’t we be priests, vicars, ministers, preachers, and popes, if that’s what we want to do?”

A murmur breaks out inside the crowd. I turn in my seat to peer at her. She seems to like to feature something in her speech, then thinks higher and sits down.

Jesus’s eyes pierce her as though he is looking at her soul. “You are like a piece of clay that sits up and berates the potter for making it into a bowl instead of a plate.

“I am the only one who designed girl. I no longer make her a competitor with Man; I made her an appropriate helpmate. I made the Man too. I formed him out of the ground’s dirt and breathed the breath of existence into his nostrils.

“Did no longer my servant Paul tell you that the top of every guy is Christ, and the head of every girl is a man, and the head of Christ is God?

“Moses warned you that a girl should no longer put on guys’ garb, nor a man wears girls’ clothing, for the Lord your God detests everybody who does this.

“And my servant Peter told better halves to be submissive to their husbands. What is a girl’s place inside the church? Paul replied: ‘Women should continue to be silent inside the churches. They are not allowed to speak but must be in submission.’ Paul concluded his message with this caution: ‘What I am writing to you is the Lord’s command.’

“The voices were Paul, Moses, and Peter; however, the phrases are mine. And my words stay forever.”

A young guy with an extended beard stands up and says to Jesus: “Your ideas are obsolete. We have long because it passed you. It would help if you didn’t tell us what’s proper and wrong. Why do not you get out of our face?”

“Your phrases are full of conceitedness and lack of information,” replies Jesus. “Brace yourself, self-guy. I will query you, and you’ll solve me.”

Jesus: “Where were you once I formed the earth, the celebs, and the universe? Tell me in case you realize.

“What way of life lives in other galaxies? And where did it come from? What exists outdoor the universe? And how long has it been there? Surely a man like you ought to understand.

“Have the gates of death been shown to you? Have you seen the glories of heaven or the souls of the saints in Paradise? Have you witnessed the horrors of hell or the souls of the damned on fire in Hades? Tell me if you have visible this stuff.”

Jesus paused a moment. Then slowly and exceptionally, he starts offevolved to speak: “Where had been you a mere one hundred years in the past? Where will you be 100 years subsequently? Answer me.”

The younger Man looks like he would like to move slowly below his seat. Slowly he shakes his head and says, ‘You know I can’t answer that.”

Jesus’ voice is unrelenting: “Brace yourself, self-guy. I will question you, and you’ll answer me. Would you discredit my justice? Would you condemn me to justify yourself?”

Waves of strength now pulsate from Christ. They strike and shake our bodies of all within the room.

“Do you have an arm like the Lord’s, and can your voice thunder like his? Then heal the ill, provide sight to the blind, and lift the dead.

“Do you have the authority of Christ? Then take the sins of the sector to your shoulders and go through the loss of life on the cross.

“Do you’ve got the energy and glory of God? Then spoil the jaws of demise and upward push from the grave on the third day.

“If you can do all this stuff, then I will admit that your proper hand can prevent it.”

With Christ’s phrases nonetheless vibrating up and down my backbone, I turn and see the young guy. All blood had drained from his face. He sits down.

Jesus appears slowly over the ocean of upturned faces and says: “The God of this age has blinded your minds. You are arrogant, proud, and ruthless. You no longer even educate and field your youngsters. You love pleasure, as opposed to God.

“Wicked and perverse era! You delight yourself in no longer knowing right from wrong. You masquerade your lack of know-how and indifference as ‘tolerance’. In your conceitedness and pleasure, you raise your twisted preference for reality. You declare the most effective sins are racism and sexism, the best vice is smoking, and the most effective distinctive feature is ‘tolerance’ closer to all different sins. How a long way from the fact you are. How silly you’re!”

His phrases had constructed as much as a crescendo, then ended. Now the auditorium is dead silent. Slowly and deliberately, Jesus maintains, “There isn’t any widespread for excellent or evil but my very own. How ways you’re from the dominion of God. How long will I put up with you?

“Who among you will reproach or accurate me? Who has a claim in opposition to me that I ought to repay? Everything underneath heaven belongs to me. I tell you the reality, except you repent of your sins and turn and observe me, and you may by no means see the dominion of heaven.”

No one cared to contradict him.

The man before me turns to his neighbor and says in a low voice, “The lamb of God has grown horns.”

“Indeed, he has,” replies the neighbor. A few worried chuckles observe.

Jesus’ penetrating gaze appeared to go properly through the Man. Then a voice adored it came from my inner head, saying, “What is that to you? You are to follow me.”

The Man with the query heard it too. He fell lower back into his seat.

I am not sure what happened next. The Man after me more or less whispered in my ear, “Did Jesus say that?” While seeking to communicate to him: “I accept as true as he did,” a larger commotion quickly unfolds at some stage in the auditorium.

I look up and spot Jesus glowing like he is on the hearth. (The description is inadequate, but no mere phrases can convey what we witnessed at that second.) Then in an instant, he is long gone! The e-news reporters are left observing an empty degree.

“Well, it truly is that then,” stated the person sitting before me. Turning to the female after him, he inquires, “What did you observe of it?”

“Not plenty,” she responds. Getting out of her seat, she says, “He didn’t say whatever new.”

“You’re proper approximately that,” feedback a voice in front of her. “I marvel why he called this news conference anyway?”

With a better-pitched shrill voice, she weighs in again: “And did you pay attention to what Jesus said approximately divorce? You would assume his mindset could have matured after a thousand years. But Nooo! Who does he assume he’s anyway? Why he is not anything but a male chauvinistic… ”

Her voice drifts into the general buzz of people clamoring out of the auditorium.

You choose the tail end of another verbal exchange in which a younger male e-news reporter complains to a not-so-younger lady reporter, “… However, I’m still disillusioned. He didn’t even mention the surroundings. After all, he made this planet. It does seem like he could show more interest in our smooth air, clean water, and… ”

I lose tune with what he is announcing due to a close-by interruption.

“The whole aspect became a waste of time. I should have covered the battle, but no, CNN sent me right here,” feedback a heavy-set guy with a booming voice. “He stated nothing about the issues of the day: the problem inside the Middle East, gun manipulation, equal-sex marriage, or what we ought to do approximately the homeless. Christ failed even to give us touch on how the government must handle those problems.

“All he did become to present us the equal antique noticed approximately how we should ‘love our friends’ and ‘do precise, even to our enemies’.”

His phrases slow down as he utters the closing word. Then he stops. The big guy has a quizzical appearance in his eyes. After a second, he keeps, “But then, of direction, perhaps… ”

My interest is diverted to some other place. A petite female on my proper grabs my arm, saying, “I accept as true that Jesus is simply telling us to come lower back to our original faith.” She lowers her voice to just above a whisper and adds, “Before it’s miles too late.”

I suppose she may have a factor there. What do you suspect? When all is said and executed, there may be no telling when existence goes to tug the plug on you. But while you are at the quit of your rope, the subsequent issue you need to hear is the voice of Jesus Christ.

You need to hear him say: “Well completed, my exact and faithful servant. I’m proud of you. Enter into the joys of my country.”

The opportunity is too terrible to contemplate.