”Do I really need to share the gospel with my grandma? Sure, she’s not a Christian, but she’s a really nice person. Surely God will accept her.”
How often do we hear Christians say this? Or maybe they won’t say it, but they think it. And so they never share the gospel with their loved ones.
Even among some Christian “ministers,” they preach universalism. That eventually, everybody will be in heaven. Forget hell. Just preach God’s love.
But when we do that, we whitewash the truth. And God hates that.
In fact, in this passage, he drills the so-called prophets for doing exactly that. He told them,
You have not gone up to the breaks in the wall to repair it for the house of Israel so that it will stand firm in the battle on the day of the Lord. (5)
Later he said of them,
They lead my people astray, saying, “Peace,” when there is no peace, and because, when a flimsy wall is built, they cover it with whitewash, therefore tell those who cover it with whitewash that it is going to fall. Rain will come in torrents, and I will send hailstones hurtling down, and violent winds will burst forth. When the wall collapses, will people not ask you, “Where is the whitewash you covered it with?” (10-12)
What were these prophets doing? They were saying to the Israelites, “You’re cool with God. Don’t worry about his judgment. You’re fine.”
And though they could see that the Israelites were a tottering wall because of their sin, instead of preaching repentance so that the wall could be stabilized and strengthened, they merely whitewashed it with words of peace.
The result? Judgment. Exile. And death.
And the same thing will happen to those we love if we whitewash the sins in their lives. If we say to them, “Peace,” when they have no peace with God.
Let us never whitewash the truth. Let us be honest with those who are separated from God and in danger of judgement and call them to repentance. For only then, will they find true life.