While there is still breath

““Yet you say, ‘The way of the Lord is not fair.’ Hear now, O house of Israel, is it not My way which is fair, and your ways which are not fair? When a righteous man turns away from his righteousness, commits iniquity, and dies in it, it is because of the iniquity which he has done that he dies. Again, when a wicked man turns away from the wickedness which he committed, and does what is lawful and right, he preserves himself alive. Because he considers and turns away from all the transgressions which he committed, he shall surely live; he shall not die. Yet the house of Israel says, ‘The way of the Lord is not fair.’ O house of Israel, is it not My ways which are fair, and your ways which are not fair?”
‭‭Ezekiel‬ ‭18:25-29‬ ‭NKJV‬‬

While there is still breath

The glory of heaven will be more than magnificent, as the saints from all the ages surround the throne of God, worshipping the One who came, who died and rose again.

“And I heard, as it were, the voice of a great multitude, as the sound of many waters and as the sound of mighty thunderings, saying, “Alleluia! For the Lord God Omnipotent reigns! Let us be glad and rejoice and give Him glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and His wife has made herself ready.” And to her it was granted to be arrayed in fine linen, clean and bright, for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints. Then he said to me, “Write: ‘Blessed are those who are called to the marriage supper of the Lamb!’ ” And he said to me, “These are the true sayings of God.””
Revelation 19:6-9 NKJV

Every face, awash in the glory of God, will have a story, a testimony, of what the Lord did in saving them from hell. Some of those stories will be the ones we expect: the person raised in church, reared on the word of God, who strayed little and remained faithful to the end.

Then there will be those who lived lives filled with evil, who encountered Jesus near the end, and have found themselves standing in righteousness before the Lord.

I think of David Berkowitz, the Son of Sam killer from the seventies, who reined terror upon New York City. He will be there, standing in the glory of a Holy God whose grace could save even him. I think of Jeffrey Dahmer, serial killer of young men and boys. He entered prison displaying great evil, but Jesus found him, and even the other prisoners noted the change.

There are so many stories of people said from the pit of hell. It is a reminder to us that there is hope of salvation while there is still breath.

The world struggles with the idea that one so wretched could be saved, that even a murderer could be saved and made righteous in Christ. I remember when Berkowitz was up for parole. There was strong outcry at the possibility, regardless of how remote. David wrote the governor.

“In all honesty, I believe that I deserve to be in prison for the rest of my life. I have, with God’s help, long ago come to terms with my situation and I have accepted my punishment. God has given me peace about this. My faith has helped to put the past behind me, and to always pray for those I have hurt, and for those who are still greiving (sic) till this very day.”

Brothers and sisters, I am sure there some among us who look upon the Lord’s grace and think, “not fair”, for He has done what He has always done. He saved souls. Many of us may have the heart of Jonah, angry at God for not destroying Nineveh, for He seems to spare those who have done us great evil.

“But it displeased Jonah exceedingly, and he became angry. So he prayed to the Lord, and said, “Ah, Lord, was not this what I said when I was still in my country? Therefore I fled previously to Tarshish; for I know that You are a gracious and merciful God, slow to anger and abundant in lovingkindness, One who relents from doing harm. Therefore now, O Lord, please take my life from me, for it is better for me to die than to live!””
Jonah 4:1-3 NKJV

In our questioning, let us be mindful, for it is because of our evil, our sins that our Savior Jesus went to the cross, suffering the most gruesome of deaths, that should have been ours to best, that we sinners be saved, of whom I am chief.

Let us go out into this wicked world, boldly bringing the Gospel. I tell you the truth, some of us will be declaring the word of God with our last breath, as our lives are taken. Even in that dark moment of terror, the Lord will be working, as the Holy Spirit convicts our killers, bringing about repentance and salvation.

Imagine one day, in the glory of heaven, persecutor standing with persecuted, killer next to those they killed, all made righteous in Jesus and standing in glory. This is the epitome of God’s amazing grace.

“And I heard a loud voice from heaven saying, “Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people. God Himself will be with them and be their God. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away.” Then He who sat on the throne said, “Behold, I make all things new.” And He said to me, “Write, for these words are true and faithful.””
Revelation 21:3-5 NKJV

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David Berkowitz letter


One thought on “While there is still breath

  1. So thankful for our lords, loving and gracious election! So undeserved in my life.

    Ephesians 1:11-13 (ESV) 11 In him we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will, 12 so that we who were the first to hope in Christ might be to the praise of his glory. 13 In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit,


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