Brad, 16 years old, a Sophomore in high school, had gone to Catholic school all of his educational life. He knew that a Christian’s goal in life is to know, love and serve God with all of his heart and to love his neighbor as he loves himself. He also knew that prayer and daily Sacred Scripture reading were necessary to grow spiritually. However, in spite of this, Brad ignored what he had been taught by his parents and teachers. He believed that God is the God of love and would always understand him and never condemn his behavior. Brad also came to believe that he had plenty of time because he was just 16 years old.
After school in early October, 2002, Brad met Karen who was also a Sophomore and attended a Catholic high school as did Brad. Within a week, Brad and Karen were constantly talking with each other on the telephone and at school. By the time, Brad finished talking with Karen he was usually very tired and never bothered to pray or think about God. On one occasion, Karen called inviting Brad to attend church with her. Shocked that Karen would want to go to church he declined stating that he had more important things to do than to waste time going to church. Saddened Karen told Brad that Jesus Christ is an important part in her life and that she could not go a single day without giving praise and thanksgiving to God. At that Brad referred to Karen as weird stating that he could no longer talk to a girl who did not see him as the most important person in her life. Sadly Karen stated that she could no longer be with a person who rejected Jesus the way he did but that she would pray for him. Brad told Karen to save her prayers for someone who needed them or pray for herself because he did not need them.
Just before Christmas Brad met a teen named Casey and another girl named Ashley, who was 4 years his senior in age. Casey convinced Brad that the use of marijuana and the occasional use of cocaine would be no problem for him. Before long, Brad stole money from his parents and from other students at school to support his need for more and more cocaine. Brad continued to believe that he had plenty of time to repent and make peace with God.
On New Year’s eve, Brad asked Ashley if she would accompany him to a New Year’s eve party at Casey’s home. Ashley agreed. Without his parents’ permission Brad went out to enjoy the night with Ashley and Casey. Before midnight, Brad had drank too much and was drunk on a variety of alcoholic beverages. Soon afterwards, Brad became engaged in the first of many sexual encounters with Ashley who convinced him that everyone else was engaged in premarital sex and that if he wanted to be popular and cool, he should do so as well. Brad agreed believing that still he had enough time to make things right with God.
It was a cold March 15, 2003 when Brad’s luck ran out. He died for no apparent reason while enjoying a double cheeseburger, large fries and a Dr. Pepper soft drink at his favor hang out with Ashley by his side. Within a twinkling of an eye, Brad was standing before Jesus who told him that he had condemned himself to eternal damnation.
Brad plead with Jesus. Jesus told him once again that he had failed in his Christian walk and that He never knew him. Jesus reminded Brad of the many opportunities He had given him to re-establish a relationship with Himself. Jesus also reminded Brad that he sent Karen to lead him back to Himself but instead he listened to Casey and Ashley who led him further away from salvation.
By now Brad was screaming, yelling and cursing. He was in horrible pain and was on fire. Brad tried to convince himself that this was a very bad nightmare. However, the pain was too intense for it to be as such. Brad screamed to Jesus from below, “Jesus, please give me another chance!” Peter appeared then informed Brad that he knew the Word of God and God cannot go back on His Word. Brad asked if Peter could tell his brothers, sisters and friends what has happened to him.
Peter replied, “Brad, your brothers, sisters and friends have the Word of God, and many, many great, good, outstanding priests, ministers and lay people of the church to listen to and to tell them what God says. The mass communication systems are so good that God’s Word can be gotten without effort. They must make their choices just as you had the opportunity to do. You just did not listen! You thought you had plenty of time! You thought the end was far from you! It is never far! You know that! You just CHOSE to ignore it!”
Brad was on fire day and night. He could not rest nor could he see members of his family or his friends. Brad cried day and night for Jesus to help him. Before long, Brad met Casey and Ashley in hell. Casey died of a drug deal gone wrong. Ashley died of an incurable sexual transmitted disease.
“Casey! Ashley!” shouted Brad, “What happened! Why didn’t I make it to heaven?”
“Brad, you chose hell just like we did! You just did it a little differently than we did. You said there is no God. God doesn’t exist. Everything is relative. There is no absolute truth. Truth is what you make it. You said that there is a God but I’ll play games with my salvation. You said that God will give me a break because I learned how to pray and I know the Bible. You also thought that you had plenty of time to make your peace with God. Just because you were 16 years old time was on your side and nothing could happen to you. You had no time for God. Right now a lot of your friends are doing actually what you did and more. They are listening to people who hate Jesus with all of their hearts and minds. They are listening to people like us. Hey, Brad don’t you remember what God said through the Apostle Paul, ‘Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, nor thieves, nor covetous; nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God (1 Cor 6: 9-10) Or ‘For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Jesus Christ our Lord (Rom 6”23). What gets me, Brad, for all of your knowledge you were pretty stupid! You knew the word of God but you believed us who hated Jesus and you as well. Satan was right about many of you humans. You are so stupid to believe that there is no God and you can do as you please. Well, Brad, you have your just reward. Enjoy!!!!”
“Aren’t you guys going to be with me?” asked Brad.
“Hell, no! Beside we are demons. We helped get you here!” Casey and Ashley responded. Just like you many of your friends are of the world and too busy sinning and one day they will be here FOREVER unless they get wise and live for God! We cannot believe so many people on earth believe there is no God and that time is on their side. We are demons and we KNOW there is a God!”
Brad started to cry and could be heard to say, “If only I could relive my life, I would live my life for God and tell my family, friends and others not to be fool by the things of the world.”