Phillip Garrido–the registered sex offender who kept Jaycee Lee Dugard at his compound for 18 years after kidnapping her in 1991 and fathering her two children–was apparently a religious man who wrote on his blog Voices Revealed:
. . . the Creator has given me the ability to speak in the tongue of angels in order to provide a wake-up call that will in time include the salvation of the entire world.
Now of course the Atheists are having a field day with this. “See,” they say, “all religion is bad and should be outlawed.” They use anomalies like this to indict all religions (and specifically Christianity) while ignoring the wholesale slaughter of millions of people under Atheist regimes like Lenin, Stalin, Zedong, etc. But this is nothing new, and this post is not about Atheists.
No, this post is a contemplation of the visible church of the West. Like those professing Christians that defend every lowbrow act, every worldly entanglement, and ever heresy found in American Churchianty with the proclamation, “Judge Not!” (brutally ripped from its Scriptural context of course), who then hold their tongues when faced with someone like Garrido (or even Fred Phelps) lest they be revealed as hypocrites for judging these men.
Then there are those who are willing to judge this man as a non-Christian, yet sadly they will be no better off than him on Judgment Day. Many of which will be absolutely appalled and aghast that I dared to say such a thing because they’re “good” churchgoing people who’ve asked Jesus into their hearts and have never kidnapped anyone, so surely they’re not going to end up in the same place as Mr. Garrido.
Yet the very reason this man stands condemned before God is the very same reason all mankind stands condemned before God (see John 3:18 and John 3:36). Those who have truly repented of their sins and put their trust in the living Savior (which is evidenced by a changed life) will find themselves receiving a gift they do not deserve from a God who they were once hostile to. Yet He loved us enough to crush His own Son and offer Him as a substitute for the wrath and judgment we justly deserve.
There are millions of people that think they’re going to Heaven because they haven’t killed anyone and because they’ve repeated the “sinner’s prayer,” while this man is going to Hell because he’s obviously a fraud who did a very bad thing. Those who think this way are in for a surprise because millions of people who attend church every Sunday will find themselves standing before Jesus Christ on that Last Day knowing immediately that something is not right. They will make their petitions but only hear “depart from Me, I never knew you” (Matthew 7:21-23). And Mr. Garrido will not be standing next to them for a comparison or for them to point their finger at and say, “See, I’m better than him.” You will stand alone, having to give an account for your life and all those sins you’ve committed, even the secret ones you think no one knows about.
Don’t be deceived: It was “only” one sin in the garden of Eden that was enough to cast Adam and Eve out of the Garden and usher in sin, death, and judgment upon all mankind, how much more wrath do you think you’re storing up for yourselves for the day of judgment with your daily sins?
Every one of us is born into sin and every one of us lives a life of sin. We have all sinned and all our hearts are desperately sick. We are all condemned from the start, deserving nothing but God’s righteous judgment. It is only by God’s grace–and His grace alone–that anyone is saved at all. And it’s only those who trust in His Son’s complete and finished sacrifice that will find themselves escaping the wrath to come.
Don’t think this is so much an indictment as it is a plea to examine yourselves to see if you’re truly in the faith because our Lord warned us to:
Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who enter through it. For the gate is small and the way is narrow that leads to life, and there are few who find it.
Mr. Garrido is a sick, sick man.
Mr. Garrido is a sinner.
Mr Garrido claims to believe in God.
Mr Garrido is a religious fraud.
Mr. Garrido is biblically illiterate.
Mr. Garrido sounds like most people in church on any given Sunday.