Have you considered…eternity?

Your life here is not all that there is, we were created to have an eternity to go into after this life, but many people don’t consider that to be truth. Why? Because, they can’t see any of it or any of the rewards and work to be done for God’s Kingdom in it now! There are many teachers today on the Internet, in pulpits, on television who are teaching their “version of the gospel”, which Satan does as well. He has had many years to perfect his delivery of his gospel and just as he did when he tempted Jesus, he takes scripture from the Bible and either leaves a portion out or takes it out of context. Some preachers today do that too.

Their teaching is full of partial scriptures, bits and pieces, which don’t really make much Biblical sense unless they are taught in context with the scripture or passage or paragraph that they began in. A partial truth, leaving out a word or taking Scripture out of context, is a lie! A lie that sounds like it came from God’s Word, and it did but without the text around that verse, it can be made to say almost anything. This is how Satan used scripture, by picking a verse and using it to make his point…not God’s point.

Today, not just in America but all over the world, people are being killed or put in to prison for their belief in Jesus. The problem with this is that Jesus is the only solution to our problems, here and now and into eternity! Put down your “self”, bury him or her and take up the cross of Jesus! What does that mean? It means to put others ahead of you, to be kind to one another, to love one another with an unselfish love. The kind that doesn’t say, “what’s in it for me?”!!

Living this way is following the teachings found all through the Bible, not just what Jesus taught. God has always had the answer for our lives, we are just too stubborn to listen or even look for it in His Word! Then, sometimes, when we do find the answer that we were looking for we claim it as our answer not that it came from God. We don’t give Him the credit or the glory for what we find. This is exactly what most “self-help” books do, maybe not word for word because that is plagiarism, but the advice you see in them is exactly the advice you can find in the Bible.

Eternity is going to be there after this life, but it is the experience in eternity that people should be working now to ensure. If you follow your own ways or the ways of the world, and reject any or all of the teachings found in the Bible, then your eternity is going to be very different from a Christian’s eternity.

I know, many of you will say that I am being self-righteous about Christianity but I am not. My righteousness alone is not enough and yours isn’t either, as a Christian I claim the atonement and the righteousness of Jesus that He paid for on the cross! It was the “self-righteous” priests who had Him executed because they felt that they were going to lose their “position” with the people.

Before too long it is going to be more persecution, not just in America but all over the world and it will be against Christians just as it is in Muslim countries now. For many people the prospect of persecution will be enough to keep them from becoming a Christian. For the immediate future, I understand that, but think of your eternity. Once this life is over, however the end comes, you will be faced with that. Eternal unity with God and many friends in Heaven or separation from God in a place of torment and misery forever. Which would you rather endure since while you still live, you do have a choice?

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The Dark side….

In my last post I spoke about being self-righteous and many people seem to feel this way, although if you told them this they would be offended.

Self-righteousness was and has been a problem in religious circles for many generations but that is not what I have seen in the news or on talk shows lately. What is cropping up is apathy and a lack of respect between parents and children, teachers and their students and those who claim to be Christians and those who don’t.

(Darth Vader breathing)

This is the shadow of the dark side, not so much from a science fiction point of view, but the dark side of Creation. There was always a dividing line between light and dark and there really is not grey area in that spot. It is either one or the other, dark and light don’t blend in nature nor in the spiritual realm.

It seems that many people don’t exactly believe that the Bible nor anything referred to in it are real today. As if a few thousand years has obliterated Satan and his demons as well as God and His angels. That is fine if you want to believe that, I have no problem with your beliefs or lack of belief.

But…just hypothetically speaking, what if all of the things prophesied in the Bible really come true one day in the not too distant future? Would you change your thinking or your beliefs? Or would you cling to blissfully being an unbeliever and just disregard anything that your eyes see as nonsense? When your life is over on this plane of existence, what do you think will happen to you?

Many people seem to think that they just stop existing and that is that. Some say they go to a place of happiness and bliss. I don’t claim to have gone over the threshold to see what is there, but according to what is in the Bible you stand before God to be judged for your life. What you did while you lived, if you came to believe in Jesus or not and the sins that you committed during your life will all be judged either for you or against you.

How do you think your life will look to God, if you chose to go through it without Jesus or believing in Him either? The Bible says this about our life and our righteousness, “Our righteousness is as filthy rags” Isaiah 64:6. The expression there is like unwashed clothes that have been worn for weeks and are so filthy that they are coming apart.

The dark side of the spiritual realm, where Satan and his fallen angels are, is at war with God and all of His angels and those of us who tell of His love and compassion for you. Satan has no love for man, he hates us because we are made in the image of God and that is only one of his reasons. He hates us because God loves us and because we were placed above him in responsibilities in God’s kingdom.

Please, don’t go over to the dark side. Give your heart to Jesus and live for Him. Make Satan uncomfortable and angry because when you work for and with Jesus, that is what you will do.

I believe

I believe in God and all of His Words and in the Creation which He has placed us in. Why do I believe this? Because, if you don’t believe it, then one day you will find that your unbelief doesn’t change the Truth of His existence and the reality of His promises. Those who do not believe and who do not ask Jesus into their lives, will be condemned by their own choice, not by the God that loves them. It is your choice which will condemn you to the punishment that was reserved for Satan and his fallen angels.

There are so many people who have tried to make God into someone who He is not. They seem to want to humanize God and make Him be as petty and mean as humans can be and He is not. Yes, in the Old Testament He did some things which by our standards would be considered cruel and mean, yet He was doing these things to bring the Israelite nation away from idol worship and to know Him, IF they would obey His commandments and statutes. Although the record of history bears out that they didn’t listen, at least not in the long run. They would change for  a time, and then after a few years go right back to worshipping idols again.

We do the same thing today. We spend more time keeping up with friends on Facebook and Twitter than we should. Our phones, smart or not, get more attention than our children do for many people. Your job and your house occupy much more of your time than your worship of God because in many people’s lives, those things are necessary and God isn’t! How crazy is that?

God gave you your job, your ability, your family, your intellect, and all of the other good things in your life and yet you want to ignore Him because of some trivial nonsense that has no bearing on your eternal future? What could possibly have any effect on your eternal life that you can hold in your hand? Nothing! God is the Creator and the Sustainer of the Universe and of you too. He is in control of your ultimate future, but unless you decide to answer His call on your life, if you have heard it, then you will condemn yourself to hell and no amount of begging will help you.

Life is here because of Him, because He created all of life on Earth. Chance didn’t do it and it wasn’t an accident that just happened to come together. The cause of everything was and is God. He knows what you said yesterday and last year and what you did when you though you were alone. Nothing is hidden from Him because He can see the end of time and the beginning, even now. You can believe that nothing is after death if you wish, but when you die and “nothing” confronts you about your life and everything that happened in it from the time that you were a child until your death, will you just ignore it, will you ignore Him?

I don’t think so.

God is our Creator and He is also the Judge Who will send you to hell if you show up without Jesus in your heart. No amount of money will get you in the gates of Heaven. No amount of work that you do here, without Jesus in your life, will survive to follow you to Heaven. The life that you have here, regardless of how wealthy you are or how penniless you may be, will not mean anything nor have any eternal rewards IF you don’t have Jesus in your life. Period.

The world is coming apart at the seams every day and there is no human on Earth that can fix it. Seek Jesus out, read His Word and learn about Him. Ask Him to forgive you and to come into your heart so that your life will go on after this life is over. There is lots of work to be done and God knows that some of it can only be done by you and me.

Think about it.

Give your problems away

Your problems, no matter how big they might seem to you, are easily fixed from God’s perspective. All that you need to do is to give them to Him. Of course, this is something which we have a hard time doing because after a little while, we want to “do it myself” and take them back, just like children. Why? Because we can’t see what God is doing and we don’t understand His timing in the scheme of things. Which is why many people look at Christians with scorn because we have been waiting for Jesus’ return for two thousand years nearly, and He hasn’t come yet.

Timing, from God’s perspective, is on time regardless but it is His time and not ours. God can see all of time, from the past into eternity and He knows what He is doing and when He will do it. We don’t have to know or understand His timing, just be willing to live by faith and be patient because God is never late with His blessings for us or with His grace.

For instance, David writes in this Psalm:
Psalm 51 King James Version

51 Have mercy upon me, O God, according to thy lovingkindness: according unto the multitude of thy tender mercies blot out my transgressions.

2 Wash me thoroughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin.

3 For I acknowledge my transgressions: and my sin is ever before me.

4 Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, and done this evil in thy sight: that thou mightest be justified when thou speakest, and be clear when thou judgest.

5 Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me.

6 Behold, thou desirest truth in the inward parts: and in the hidden part thou shalt make me to know wisdom.

7 Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.

8 Make me to hear joy and gladness; that the bones which thou hast broken may rejoice.

9 Hide thy face from my sins, and blot out all mine iniquities.

10 Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me.

11 Cast me not away from thy presence; and take not thy holy spirit from me.

12 Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; and uphold me with thy free spirit.

13 Then will I teach transgressors thy ways; and sinners shall be converted unto thee.

14 Deliver me from blood guiltiness, O God, thou God of my salvation: and my tongue shall sing aloud of thy righteousness.

15 O Lord, open thou my lips; and my mouth shall shew forth thy praise.

16 For thou desirest not sacrifice; else would I give it: thou delightest not in burnt offering.

17 The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.

18 Do good in thy good pleasure unto Zion: build thou the walls of Jerusalem.

19 Then shalt thou be pleased with the sacrifices of righteousness, with burnt offering and whole burnt offering: then shall they offer bullocks upon thine altar.

This was written during a time of God’s punishment of David for his sins with Uriah’s wife Bathsheba, because of the adultery and murder which David had committed, yet God forgave him. We are not told why God did this, other than David crying out to Him for forgiveness. This is the very nature and essence of what we should do with our lives and our problems. Give them to God and leave them there, don’t go back and tell God that you will take care of it because He is too busy! God is never too busy and He is able to do all the things that we ask Him to do, but He will do them according to His time and His purpose, not ours!

He loves each one of us and will take care of our needs, not our wants or our luxuries, and He will do it when He sees the need and not before.

How is your day?

Do you get up wondering and worried about things which are planned for the day or do you rest in the presence of God? Do you realize that He is interested in your day and all of the happenings in it? It’s true, the Creator of the universe is interested in your life and in everything that happens to you.

I know, there are so many people who have said that “God, if He exists, is not interested in us nor does He care about us at all”.  WHY would you say this? God did not create mankind and the world which He gave to us for our life and our sustenance just to turn away and go to some part of creation and turn away from us! Of course, we don’t know that we are the only intelligent beings in the universe, but God told Moses how things were created and we should accept it as the Truth.

If there are others, we will find out when God is ready for us to find out. In the mean time, we should use each and every day as we were commanded to by Jesus Himself, “Go into all of the world, teaching and preaching the gospel of the Kingdom of God”. Those may not be His exact words, but that was the commandment that He gave His disciples and since we, who are Christians, are His disciples in this time, then we take up our cross, our mandate to tell others about Jesus.

Your day, like many others in this day and age, begins like the rest of us…by waking up. This act alone deserves our gratitude and thanks to Him! Then, if we are able, we get our coffee or tea and eat something to break the fast from the night before. If we are able, we get ready to go to a job which we should be thankful for as well to have one, and we work at that job until it is time to get off work and come home. All of this happens without you or me having to do much more than put one foot in front of the other. We don’t have to worry about our heart beating or our breathing, it just happens. God designed us this way, just as He did every other animal on Earth that breathes air, the big difference is that He gave us part of His life, our eternal soul.

No other created being has this! God wanted someone who He could have fellowship with, daily, which is why He is interested in you and me and the life that each of us has. There is no difference between a rich man or a person with little more than the clothes on their back. In God’s eyes, we are all equal and we are all guilty of being sinners unless we have accepted Jesus as our Savior. No amount of giving to the poor or volunteering for charity will give you an edge over someone else, if you have not asked Jesus into your heart then you are just as lost as the murderer on death row that has killed someone!

In God’s eyes, because He is Holy, even a sin like telling a lie is just as bad as killing someone in cold blood! But…if you have given your life and your heart to Jesus, your page which has recorded all of your sins is cleansed just as white as purest snow. From that point on, you are His and you are forgiven. Oh, you will stumble and fall just like the rest of us do from time to time, but the Spirit which lives in you will bring it to your attention and when you ask for forgiveness, it is gone because of the work which Jesus did on the cross.

Walking in fellowship with God and having the Spirit living in your heart is just a small taste of the Kingdom of God. Daily learning from Him, by reading and studying His Word, meditating on it during your day, praying about the day that you are having and then thanking Him for your blessings of your health, your family, your job and the salvation which was provided by Jesus..this is just a part of the daily life that we are to have in Christ. It is a way of life that needs to be embraced, especially now in the time that we are living in. Time is growing short for Satan and for the age of grace. I don’t know how long we have, no one knows that except for God, but according to the signs which are happening around us, it is likely that we don’t have very long until the proof that the world has been seeking will be revealed about Who God is and that His Word is true.

Think about it and look up, because He will come quickly when that day dawns and then the time is up.

Life, do you participate in it?

Many people think that they do. They get up each morning, eat breakfast and then head out for work or to the doctor’s office or maybe to the grocery store. To many people, this is participation and life itself. But, what is life? What kind of life are we supposed to have? That depends on your perspective toward life itself. Are you a Christian or do you just believe that stuff happens by accident with no real purpose or meaning?

Accidents, other than those in cars and trucks, don’t just happen. There is a reason for them, even and especially when we are involved because humans make mistakes! Nobody is perfect and if anyone ever tells you so, they are lying. Perfection is found in natural processes, but even those are prone to mistakes because even DNA can’t replicate itself without some errors at some point. Visible perfection is what I meant when I said that it is found in nature, although our perception of it is imperfect so I suppose it is up to the beholder to judge the perfection of mountains or sunsets or a vista that you see or experience.

Participating in life is something that we all do on a daily basis if we are physically able to do so. Living beings cannot help but participate in life because we are alive. Plants, animals, people are all living beings and all of us, in general, live our lives until that life is ended whether by accident or disease or just by age. Participation is not really an option for living beings or things, it just is. God designed life to be that way, to be lived in accordance with His laws and it is. Whether you believe in Him or not, you can’t just choose to go to sleep tonight and not wake up in the morning. Your “expiration date” is determined by His timing and design not yours because He is God and you…we are not and will never be “gods”.

We live at His pleasure. We have our purpose and sustenance by His design. As it says in His Word, “you cannot make one hair white or black” Matthew 5: 33-37. Living life is a privilege and we live it by God’s grace and mercy, not by our own will. I know that many people will say, “Yes, I do live by my own will. I bow to nobody”. Right now that may be true, but one day you will stand before Him and kneel down acknowledging that He is Lord and God. Whether you did it in this life or not doesn’t matter.

God doesn’t force you to give your life to Him, you have the choice to do so or not. If you do while you still live then your meeting after this life will be a joyous one. If not, then it won’t be…it is just that simple. You cannot go on thumbing your nose at God during your lifetime and expect a welcome home when you die! Why? Because our own brand of “righteousness” is man-made and shallow and it is not given to us by Him. Read God’s Word, study it and pray about what you have read because only through the reading of it and praying for understanding can you hope to understand it! Give your life to Him each and every day, determine to follow Him each morning when you wake so that the day will be His and not just yours. This is the most important decision that you can ever make in your life, because this life is not the end but the beginning!

Repentance is….

Something which many people seem to be against. I don’t know exactly why, but when people like certain things, they just don’t want to give them up. I understand the feelings about certain things being so strong that you just can’t seem to quit, but what about those things which will cause you pain and suffering? Why is it so impossible for some to be unable or unwilling to change their beliefs or their lifestyles so that there won’t be anymore suffering?

Before I go on with this line of thought, I am not speaking of suffering while you are enjoying your life or whatever you happen to be doing. I am speaking of pain that will come as a result of something that you are doing now. It may not come during your lifetime here on Earth, but when your life is over then you have to explain your actions to God, whether you believe in Him or not, then what will you say? “I was only having fun!”; “I didn’t mean to hurt anybody.”; the only thing that is going to be done is a view of everything that you have said and done during your lifetime which can’t be ignored nor explained to God because He already knows your answer.

Repentance is “changing your life and your mind so that you are doing things which are totally different from what your life was before Jesus.” In other words, a 180 degree turn away from sin, regardless of what that might be, and turning toward Jesus and following Him. Believing in Jesus and asking Him to forgive you and to come into your life and change you into the person that He wants you to be for Him and for His purposes and not your own is just as simple as saying, “Lord Jesus, I admit that I am a sinner and that I need you in my life. Please forgive me of my sinful ways and help me to become the person that You want me to be. I thank you for your sacrifice because it made a way for me to become an adopted child of God through  you and I believe that You did it all for me. Amen.”

It is just as simple as that. You don’t need to do anything else because He did it all for you.