God is serious. When the children of Israel refused to enter the land of Canaan, He declared they would die in the wilderness and the next generation would inherit the land. In Numbers 26:64, 65 we read, “But among these there was not a man of those who were numbered by Moses and Aaron the priest when they numbered the children of Israel in the Wilderness of Sinai. For the LORD had said of them, ‘They shall surely die in the wilderness.’ So there was not left a man of them, except Caleb the son of Jephunneh and Joshua the son of Nun.”
When God makes a declaration, He sticks to it. The penalty of sin is not altered by the passing of time. Men sometimes soften over time in their attitude toward sin and the one who committed it. It is one thing if the sinner has repented, we must receive him back (2 Cor. 2:6-11). However, to the one who remains stubborn in sin, we cannot soften. We must remain resolute for their sake and ours.
Again, back to God’s attitude about such things. When He said that “the cowardly, unbelieving, abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death,” He meant it. Even 2,000 years later He has not changed His mind. God’s Word stands for eternity (1 Pet. 1:22-25).
Let us take heed. When the Lord says a sin will be punished, it will be punished. And thankfully, when He says faithfulness will be rewarded, we can count on it (Rev. 22:14).