There was an early Christian Anabaptist in the 1500s, a Hutterian that was captured and tried for his faith.  This was a common occurrence, and many were put to death for their staunch Bible based faith. 

The crime he was arrested for was pointing out the sins of those in authority, and for wanting to live the life he believed the Bible taught him to live.  His captors were threatening to kill him if he did not take back what he said.  All they wanted the Hutterian to say was that they were good Christians too.

To say they were "good Christians" went against the man's conscience, because he knew they were teaching the people things that were not in the Bible, things that would condemn souls to hell.  They were also doing all sorts of hideous things; personal sins and even atrocities committed in the name of "the Church".  The Hutterian was willing to die for his convictions and as a witness to the truth that he spoke.

The man had a family, who needed him.  His death would be a great loss to those he loved.  Day after day they would lead him from his cell and try to coerce a reversal of his earlier statements.  Time was growing short, he would soon be put to death.  Finally they tried to appeal to his religious convictions.  They asked him if God would forgive him if he sinned.  The Hutterian said yes, if he repented and asked forgiveness.  They reasoned with him, "then why not say that we are good Christians too?  Then you can go home to your family and later if you feel that was a sin, you can ask God to forgive you." 

The Hutterian replied "How do I know that I will repent?" and stood by his convictions, eventually he gave his life as a Martyr for the truth of the gospel.

This is the question we must ask.  This is the defining point of the hard heart.

How do we know when we will step over the line.  Can we continue sinning willfully, expecting always that there will be a sacrifice for our sins, and an opportunity to repent.  We have a birthright as born again believers, an inheritance that is unimaginable and full of glory.  Are we willing to sell it for a few moments of satisfying the flesh?   After Esau sold his birthright to feed his flesh, he sought for repentance with tears and could not find it. 

Maybe you have gotten away with it in the past.  but there is no guarantee that you will again.

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