Charles Peace was a famous 19th-century English burglar and murderer who had no regard for the laws of God or man. Through crafty disguise, he managed to evade the police for years. Eventually, they caught up with him, and he was put on trial and condemned to death by hanging at Armley Jail in Leeds.
When the morning of his execution arrived, Peace was met with a chaplain and a group of prison officials who led him to the gallows. As they all walked together, the obviously sleepy chaplain yawned and mumbled his way through reading out loud about the fires of hell. “What are you reading?” asked Peace.
“The Consolations of Religion,” replied the chaplain.
“Do you believe what you are reading?”
“Well, yes, I guess I do.”
Peace said, “Sir, if I believed what you and the church of God say that you believe, even if England were covered with broken glass from coast to coast, I would walk over it, if need be, on hands and knees and think it worth while living, just to save one soul from an eternal hell like that!”
Hell is an unimaginably terrifying place. The book of Revelation describes it as “the lake of fire and brimstone” where the devil and his allies “will be tormented day and night forever and ever.” I don’t know about you, but I sure don’t want to go there!
Nor do I want anyone else to.
That’s one good reason to convince people to follow Christ. The apostle Paul wrote, “Therefore, knowing the fear of the Lord, we persuade men” (2 Cor. 5:11). Paul would stop at nothing to persuade the lost to turn to God.
What about us? How much effort do we make to save the lost? More than that sleepy chaplain? Hopefully so!
Whatever trouble we might go to, it’s more than worth it if even one person is saved as a result. James 5:19 says, “My brethren, if any among you strays from the truth and one turns him back, let him know that he who turns a sinner from the error of his way will save his soul from death and will cover a multitude of sins.”
Jesus didn’t crawl through glass for miles to save you and me. He suffered something far worse. He hung on a cross, suspended between heaven and earth by large nails through His hands and feet, suffocating for six hours in agonizing pain. Though He was sinless, he suffered the humiliation of being crucified between two criminals as if He were a wicked man.
If Jesus did that for our salvation, certainly we can make more of an effort to save the lost! If you’re reading this and aren’t a Christian, I’d gladly crawl across glass for you to know the gospel. Please feel free to contact me anytime if you want to know more.