God loves you(65) and wants to have a real relationship with you which is more intensely personal than any you can have with someone you can touch, and more fulfilling than anything you have ever experienced(69). He is the ultimate Dad(36), and wants His kids to know Him(84, 88). He shows no pretense and puts no obstacles between you and He(31, 19). We can relate to Him through His Word(75, 58) and the focused attention of prayer(67). However, since relationships require trust, He doesn’t instantly and fully show Himself to us because that would preoccupy us with self-preservation instead of a desire to be close to Him and freely experience His sincere friendship and immeasurable love(28). It certainly wouldn’t cause us to believe in His charity and our freedom. We would all end up separated from Him because our worship would only be out of fear of punishment from such a powerful, resplendent and glorious being(13, 61). He is, however, very much present and has absolute rule, though you may think that you are and can usurp His authority since He doesn’t seem to mind. He doesn’t want to punish or control you, but to fill you with His Spirit(16) and include you as part of His family(34, 36). You can’t work for His favor or earn His love(84, 18), just commit to Him with everything you have(1) and let Him lead you through your life journey(76, 52). You are no less valued than anyone else to Him and there is nothing you have done that is ‘too bad’ for Him to forgive(5, 43). He doesn’t want to shame us through condemnation(34), but convict us to change and be absolved(16). The original sin of Adam infected us all(52, 11) with an attitude of defiance and hostility and left a difficult stain(7, 64). It is not simply breaking a rule but choosing a dark path(10) in our thoughts, words, deeds or motives in relationship to God and others. Adam marked us all with death, but any one of us would have done the exact same thing given the opportunity(5), and our body will still desire sin even after we have His Spirit in us(52). Just as our acts of good will not save us, our personal acts of evil are not what have brought us under condemnation; they have only confirmed it. No one is innocent(91). Because we could never deserve such unsurpassed and unconditional love(65) on our own and because He will do whatever is necessary for His children(84, 47), God sent a form of Himself, Jesus(The Christ), to live as and die for us(80, 9) and provide hope in a cure for our condition(15, 60). He shines to reveal the dirt on our hands and remove it. He did not offer such a privilege to the angels. Now, to honor the breath that He gave us(58) in the presence of our redeemer(83), we are personally compelled to make His character and presence scrupulously known to this provisional world(39, 74). He is real so let’s go.
He is The absolute Truth(2). His Living Word(14, 52) is our specific, supernatural blueprint for obtaining eternal life. Jesus is The Word and the evidence of it’s truth(80,51). God has gone to great length to give us all the instructions on what to expect and how we should live during our patently brief experience as a complex but delicate vessel made from dust and water, and a unique revelation of who He is and what He has done(5, 88). It is our greatest and most sacred treasure- there is no greater literature and God designed the language He gave it to us in. It is The Good News, not just a book of good advice to be blended with the rest of your knowledge of the world. Since our creator inspired it, it is certainly binding on your life and not to be taken for granted. It has to be read/consumed(32), meditated on/digested(40, 67), believed and relied on(42, 82), and applied in your daily life(43, 32). God personally reveals himself to us through it(75) and himself inspired all of these words(not just the parts we like) for our benefit, and it has remained unchanged despite thousands of years of upheaval(3). The books of our Bible were included in the canon as soon as they were written and needed no approval because they were known to be inspired by God(80, 83) and meticulously maintained by those He chose for the job(42). They are coherent and axiomatic and the church codified what was already accepted(79). More than stories, The Gospels originated as oral histories of events for which there are no contrary sources of information, at locations that are largely known to us, written down while the witnesses were still alive and verified as to the correctness of the facts(21). The four were independently written with each his own style and a primary audience in mind(Matthew- Jews who spoke Greek and knew The Old Testament; Mark- Roman Christians focused more on application; Luke- Greeks, wanting to know what Jesus said and did; John- uniquely aimed at those influenced by Greek philosophy), and for the purpose of causing people to follow Jesus Christ(76, 45). The apostle Paul, as a respected Roman citizen, scholar and member of the social elite(27), had spent much of His life actively trying to kill all Christians(which he was forthcoming about(31, 55)) before He experienced Jesus personally and committed himself to serving Him and humbly proclaiming His Truth(21). Even some who had been posing as prophets and sorcerers were converted(21). There were a lot of people who were influenced by Jesus during His lifetime and since what He said and did(His resurrection in particular(83)) is historical fact(31), then we must accept the rest of what has been exegetically attributed to God(not men) by real scholars. Paul even mentioned the resurrection prior to the writing of The Gospels as a testimony to the authenticity of the believers and the validity of their faith(59, 39). Real historians have agreed that much of Paul’s material is reliable and archaeology continues to corroborate the events of these books much more than some of the other ‘historical’ documents we have(31, 18). It is not circular to use Matthew or John to prove Genesis, and the accounts of creation are entirely trustworthy when you consider that the longevity of people at that time averaged over 900 years. Noah’s father(Lamech) was already about 56 years old at the time of Adam’s death(his 7th great-grandfather) and his son, Shem knew Abraham. Adam, Methusaleh and Shem cover the first 2157 years of history. The extraordinary claims of The Bible might be less plausible if it were not for the large volume of prophecy surrounding them and the consistency of such fantastic truth being maintained over many centuries and through over 40 writers with vastly different dispositions(21, 3). God’s authority never expires and no human council is responsible for establishing The Truth- they are to maintain what is because, in fact, all truth is God’s and what would He be without the ability to transmit His truth to us? For nearly nineteen centuries now, The Bible has been studied more and translated into more languages(and more accurately) than any other literary work, even languages which have no written alphabet. There are more than 14,000 Old Testament manuscripts and fragments, and the copying procedures for Hebrew scribes did not tolerate interruptions or questionable marks. The letters of a book would be counted several ways to validate their accuracy. For The New Testament, we have at least 5600 manuscripts in Greek alone and some 20,000 in other languages. No other work of antiquity even compares. Those who prefer the KJV should know that it is based on only about 6-12 of the more recent manuscripts and any argument for it’s superiority would be even more valid for the older Geneva Bible or Latin Vulgate. Thankfully, despite our limited perception and constantly changing word usage, His Holy Spirit illuminates His Truth for us beyond the version or language we read it in(32, 71) when we have a sincere desire to know it’s real author(14, 52). He is always present to personally expound His thoughts to us at the same time He provides our next heartbeat. It won’t make much sense to the insincere or complacent or the one who already has all the guidance and fulfillment they need.
Many think of truth as always relative- what is true for now may not be true later or what is true for me may not be for you- yet we obsess over ideas of fairness and equality at our convenience(51). We appeal to the law when we are wronged, with little or no compassion for the offender, but when we are the accused, we will generally seek to avoid it’s punishment by giving excuses for our actions and shifting the blame. A beguiling devil has always tried to distort our perception of the truth and make his lies seem acceptable and innocent to us(12, 73). He constructs confusing gray areas of pseudo-truth and makes actual truth seem like the opposite or incompatible. He wants us to spend our life absent from the present and in the dark so we will not rise above the limitations he tries to impose on us and not have a positive influence in the world around us(54, 1). You cannot fight an enemy that you deny the existence of, and there must be leadership from one who knows more than you. Satan prefers children to grow up in families where there is no leadership from a real, loving father, so that boys do not learn how to be good men who are worthy of respect and girls are not protected and shown an example of a good and devoted husband(68). Jesus exemplifies goal-oriented truth and infinitely generous sacrifice(76, 33), showing the discipline and patience to follow through on what He said and started(76, 15). We live in a hasty society where distraction, non-committal, dishonesty and self-centeredness compels us toward a perpetually dubious state of mind where we remain over-entertained and under-challenged(64, 54). For instance when we watch a movie, we must suspend disbelief temporarily in order to identify with characters and fully enjoy the plot, due in part to our brain filling in what is not there between the mere 24 pictures we are seeing each second. We re-imagine reality with some blur. Scenes shot at higher frame rates and with less ‘movie magic’ do not lend themselves to the same passive viewing experience and begin to look somehow fake to us even though we are seeing more realism and detail(and imperfections). When it is over, we will likely resume a cynical attitude with real people in a real setting, disguising our speech with euphemisms(56, 74), reacting evasively to questions and hiding intentions through posturing(64). It is easy to point out the faults and shortcomings of others while minimizing or making excuses for our own(90). Some of us work very hard to hide what is real, focusing on how I look to others and making decisions based on what others are doing(62). We are fascinated by packaging and mystery. Instead of fearing God, we are anxious about social situations, feel peer pressure or codependence, or are in awe of people who do amazing things or seem to have power(70). Many think that to not believe in any higher being or purpose means that they are liberated(57, 52) and the stories found in The Bible are not real or moral(11). However, the meaninglessness of that ‘freedom’ means that view is not only unsound, but baseless, and they are really only a slave to their own physiology and its limitations- men become confined machines, executing a list of instructions until there is a break. There is no hope in this sinister thinking and we cannot be liberated where there is no accountability(60). Furthermore, for one to not believe that humans have an innate sense of truth and morality ultimately deconstructs that sense for the person who believes that(11), and the claim that no one knows exclusive truth(4) is itself an arrogant claim to superior knowledge(79, 2). If we all do life our own way and only have time for I-stuff, we inspire chaos(90, 60) and would all become sociopaths. Moreover, The Kingdom Of God is not a democracy where we can all vote to define the rules as we go or assume authority without responsibility, nor does it embrace the western obsession for impulsive production and consumption of all things material or physical and the idea that it is the basis for a persons value or prosperity. We were each born with a value and purpose given by God, centered around meaningful connections and experiences. We were not made to take ownership of anything, but to steward all He has provided for us. He presents us each with a lifetime of circumstances, and we make our own choices since only He knows the final outcome(26). He is the real authority and His jurisdiction does not stop anywhere(88, 67).
Some would seek to discredit the truth through perceived paradoxes in scripture but what we really find is that God’s truth is multifaceted and He cannot be diminished in any way by our lack of understanding or faith(29, 30). Children commonly try to resist their parents by twisting or using their words against them. There is no doctrine of Christianity which rests on a disputed text and passages are not mutually exclusive of each other. Attempts to make everything fit together nicely in our minds is discrediting of our real and infinite God and indicates a desire to replace or manipulate Him. We have more control over what we can explain. Sin is very insidious and many people deceive themselves or undermine their own minds(64, 11). They participate in their own deception because of their desires and prejudices(54, 79). They would rather believe in the supremacy of man instead of the supremacy and sovereignty of God(52, 15). Even a miracle would not convince them(87, 31). They claim control over their environment until something happens that shows otherwise, at which point it becomes ‘luck’ or can be rationalized in some way, as they are resistant to changing their paradigm. At the same time, they accept no responsibility for their choices and what they say means nothing(56). While God’s truth is absolute and universal, the application of it by each individual can be different(48, 74). Lies are never true, but people doubt because of emotional rather than factual reasons. Feelings should never be the basis for our beliefs, although the fact that we feel so strongly about things like suffering and artistry show that they are not the effects of mere physiology(11). While we tend to fabricate our own reality and identity, God knows each of us more personally and deeply than we know ourselves(53). How terrible it would be to realize at the end of your life that your ‘story’ was self-fulfilling fiction spun out of fantastical assumptions, blind endorsements and entertaining conjecture. Living in your own ‘bubble’ of contradictions of reason and meaning inevitably leads to a moment where you realize how incoherent it is and have to deal with the legacy of your own delusion. ‘Be true to yourself’ is a misnomer if you don’t know who you are, and quiet time spent without God is a trap(54, 52). You can know all the facts and still not see what is really happening(53, 28). Often, what we end up with doesn’t look like the picture we were shown(22). There is no point in trying to avoid the truth or escape it(14). Unlike falsehood, it does not go away. Even though they may try to live in thoughtlessness and denial, an addict discovers at some point that what was once ‘fun’ is leading them towards death(54). They begin to hate the lie they live and the enslavement to it, feeling hopeless to escape. Rather than fulfillment, the result is disappointment and frustration. The ones who try to help rather than enable meet opposition as the addict believes their condition is ‘normal’ or ‘meant to be’. Sex has become a popular addiction where real intimacy is avoided and what was God’s gift is corrupted into something superficial and unsatisfying, only leading to more obsession and pain(54). All sin seems satisfying, but the truth of Jesus can really free us from our bondage whenever we choose and give us strength(60, 15). Being a slave to Christ means losing your pride and self-interest so that you can be truly free(37, 76). We can continue to ‘enjoy’ our physical nature or choose an eternal, spiritual existence with much more potential. We need only devote our-self to and be passionate about Him instead of the countless hollow and contrived things that contend for our dedication(49, 48). We all, by way of our time, energy, money, thoughts and words, worship or obsess over something. Some people seek to be worshiped or gain ‘followers'(38). Worship happens in stadiums, conventions, scenic areas, concerts, handheld devices, nightclubs, offices, shopping malls, cars, gyms, internet sites, mmog’s, dining rooms and bedrooms, but no cause, experience, position, belonging, passion, team, doctrine, person or anything else created and temporal can compare to God who did the creating(49, 92). They are marketed as the thing which will completely fulfill and gratify, but over time they will not solve any problems or consistently deliver anything worthy of such esteem, and so you will begin to hate them for it. It is an illusion of our own making(54) and peace comes not from the gifts, but focusing on The Giver(1, 52). In the words of C.S. Lewis from ‘The Weight Of Glory‘, “We are half-hearted creatures, fooling around with drink and sex and ambition when infinite joy is offered us, like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea. We are far too easily pleased.”
God’s Truth is perfect(71) and anything that does not match what is written(44) in The Bible can be freely discarded. All innovation happens in human hearts, not in His Word. It is under attack more multilaterally and consistently than anything else, precisely because it is The Truth(82, 87). Each of us is lied to up to 200 times every day and the mostly fake friends on ‘social’ networks prop up a standard of narcissistic behavior which makes normal people feel lacking(38, 11). Those who are the most vocal are hardly the most informed or open. It is the responsibility of each individual(74) to search the scriptures and be prepared(68) to speak The Truth whenever and wherever it is being obscured or discredited(73, 31), even in places of worship(44, 52). We must not lazily accept whatever is presented by anyone who comes knocking or become complacent in our familiarity with scripture(79, 41), but be proactive and study hard as do the purveyors of counterfeit gospels(14, 3). Here is one very common example and another similar one. These sentences have footnotes linked to scripture for a reason- so you can look them up and study them(44). Even devils know God’s Word(72, 12), but we can be confident that the One who said it will authenticate His message(86, 3). There have been many distorted ideas and caricatures of God, His Word and the history of The Church, but what He says is all that matters(51, 32). The Bible is in no way a convoluted collection of anecdotes, but a straightforward and didactic arrangement of symbolic meaning and literal truth(31). Though a Rhinoceros has a horn on its head, we do not call it a unicorn. We cannot begin to understand everything and, if He told us it would only give devils more to use against us and would not generate the trust that is required for a loving and respectful relationship(29, 15). Rather than seeking to have all the answers, we should seek to know The Counselor better(1, 52). He wouldn’t be much of a God if we could fit Him inside our minds(30), and if we could see all that He sees it would overwhelm and crush us(13, 61). God does not lie or deceive(85) and if we ask Him for understanding, He will answer(22). It may not pass through our logic easily but it will point us in a Biblical direction(10, 3). We are His children(36), and as such it can be quite difficult to imagine how much more we can grow and learn. Explaining continually why you want your son or daughter to obey you does not teach them to depend on and respect you(36). God gives us greater perspective as we follow Him and let His Spirit consume us, not giving so much credibility to what our physical senses tell us, but instead homing in on the greater reality that is apparent(28, 87). You might say we are our thoughts. Our bodies are mere vessels for our souls or tents for our spirit while we are camped on earth temporarily(30). If we are responsible and obedient in what He has already given us, He will entrust us with more(24, 34). God deserves our full attention(46, 40), not our leftovers or trivial regards or sense of entitlement(55, 1). If you heard a lion roar or saw one close by, you would become immediately intentional(61, 53).
He is The ultimate Life(2). To live with God is to experience it as God does , with a sacred purpose(26) greater than your own selfish desires(37, 76) and with an awareness larger than just what you can see(28, 52). Our reason for living changes so that comfort and security are no longer our concerns, and the present moment is paramount. Our true motives are revealed in circumstances requiring faith, which prompts us to examine our hearts further and really grow together(71). Faith is not believing in something without proof, it is believing in someone greater than yourself and expecting more than what you are capable of. Perfect faith is trusting in God’s character and promises such that you do not hesitate to act on them, and doing so with a passion that is visible to others(59) and inspires more of the same(28, 1). Our God has an infinite mind, not human attributes, and is capable of being the closest and truest friend of every one of us at once(63)! Our definition of ‘friend’ today is quite broad and unspecific, but friendship with Jesus is the kind that means so much that you would be happy to spend hours with Him in slow, heavy traffic(1). Real friendship is becoming quite rare and we have used technology to create feelings of intimacy without real closeness. God designed us in such a way that requires us to learn to cooperate to get past our individual perspectives and limitations in order to achieve things that bring Him glory and us fulfillment. We cannot thrive in isolation just as we will not get all the nutrients we need if we only eat one kind of food all the time(90). We must make ourselves vulnerable by trusting Him in our relationships with and service to others(33, 52). Often, He would have us cultivate a relationship with the person we want to avoid or one who does not see things the way we do. The triune and aseitic nature of God is not easy to describe, but it shows us unity which cannot be divided and perfect fellowship between different parts of one body(80,39). It fully explains the fact that God wants an utterly personal, truly loving relationship with us and why it is in our nature to desire community/intimacy and relate to one another through His gift of language and writing(80, 83). He created physical unity through our complementary bodies to show how we benefit from this togetherness in a tangible way, with the harmony permeating into our very spirits to bind us together(81).
Reading and obeying His Word purifies us so that we can become what He made us for(16, 36). It is food for us, making us sturdy and vigorous followers of Christ(32, 40). His Spirit is like refreshing water for our souls, enabling us to function and sustaining us through all difficulties(50, 71). Sin feeds our wants which corrupts and enslaves our body and mind(54, 55), but God provides for our needs and regenerates us(60). At Calvary/Golgotha, Jesus defeated death and bought us real life(52). When we say no to ourselves, whether by getting rid of something that gets us into trouble or simply using our time and resources for more Christ-like purposes, we can say yes to Jesus and the blessings He wants to pour into us. If we spend all of our time in a virtual event, we miss all of the beauty of the actual events around us that God has created. The abundance of choices we have created for ourselves serves only to make us indecisive and unhappy with what we have. As we grow solid in our faith, we appreciate the limits our Father sets for us and find it easier to say ‘no’ despite what someone else may say or do. There is no room for self-righteousness or self-indulgence(38, 64). We are not special in our own right, but made to work together as one body(90). We must correct wrong actions(79, 90), but we cannot be judgmental of what we have no knowledge, such as other people’s heart or motivations(90). God’s love subdues us and magnifies Him(65). We must sacrifice individuality to realize our purpose(33, 52) and be willing to abandon all we now have for eternal assets, even if it means abasement(76, 1). If we live for what we can get for ourselves, we will have nothing when we die(76, 49). In His grace, He uses our wants and our mistakes in awesome ways to teach us and bring us together(48, 39), as well as reveal His glory through us(52, 33). Led by His Spirit, we experience great joy as we confidently charge towards and overcome whatever obstacles and difficulties we find in our way(15, 45).
He created you the way you are for a reason, and because He wanted you to be part of His pleasing design(58, 36). He knew what words would come from our lips, yet He breathed life into us anyway. He didn’t stamp us all out in assembly-line fashion, but carefully and lovingly crafted each one of us(6) with unique weaknesses and gifts(62), and the freedom to use them for our own prideful ends or His transcendent ones(48). As a butterfly must spend some time as a caterpillar, so too must we be preparing now for our transformation where we will leave our flesh behind. To live this short life without Him is to never know what you were meant for, to never be what you truly are(16). It is garbage compared to what we gain in Jesus Christ(66), and indeed, He will ruin your plans to realize something inconceivably more spectacular through you(52)! You can’t outlive Him and you can’t live without Him. He gave you the option to accept life through Him or death by default(14, 7) and He alone is the one who has the right to judge His creation according to His perfect standard(51, 11). It is not on our terms(76, 84), and it is no contest to live fast and party hard. Many people think of God’s punishment as unreasonable or harsh, but He is infinitely holy(2) and is the perfect essence of justice(83, 91). Far from indifferent, His love and forgiveness are as exceptional and irresistible as His wrath is for our remorseless wrongs(65, 16). If you strike a man, you could expect the same from him, but strike a king and it could cost you your life(61). Our King, however is very forgiving and merciful(34, 84), and we are likewise given benefits we do not deserve when we submit to Him(65). What is true of Jesus becomes true of us and nothing can torment us any more(45, 23) when we accept His authority and are grafted into His family as intended(36). His mind becomes our mind(3). His redemptive power invades us and nothing in this world, not even our own flesh, can dominate us any longer(55, 2). Without Him, we hardly exist. We truly begin to live when we act with our full will to realize His full will in our life(7); We transfer ownership of all that we have to Him(16, 82). He is the source of life and we must find our identity and serenity in Him(1, 51).
He is The essential Way(2). Jesus said ‘Follow Me'(76, 67), not impersonate me, pretend you know me, collect stuff with my name or likeness, follow my social network or become religious(41, 78). It was not a casual suggestion or a discussion topic, but a challenge to start moving(88, 52). He meant for us to become like Him, to stop what we are doing and do what He is doing(46, 88). Many of us are lazy, always wanting to be laying in the green pastures, using prayer and study as a retreat to personal enjoyment or a way to manipulate God. The Word is a sword(71) and Jesus said ‘Go'(39). Don’t try to customize Him or His Gospel to fit your purposes(32, 53), but take it as-is to every context where it is missing(76, 74). Just as when Jews took it to the Greeks, it is a message that transcends cultural and societal constraints(74) while finding it’s traction in the fellowship of small gatherings. That ‘signal’ is still going out through all space and time whether we acknowledge reception or not(3). We have His light in our hearts to seek Him(10, 54), no matter how much the darkened world tries to convince us that He does not exist or care(14, 52). There is much artificial light filling our eyes now so that we won’t notice Him or His work, and literally, few today have ever seen, with their own eyes, the magnificent veil of galaxies stretching across the night sky. The light that He shines through us is the most extraordinary though(50). He is present no matter where you are and is patiently waiting for you to find and believe Him(19,28)! Endless searching for that ‘something’ or ‘someone’ to fulfill you and make you complete, and the quest for the reason for your existence is over(69). There is no other valid philosophy or way(4, 79), and when you come before Him there will be no excuses(11, 87). If you spend your life, your adequate but only opportunity, estranged as an enemy of Jesus, calling Him evil and judging yourself as good and right(54, 89), He will give you what you ask for when final justice is rendered(91, 64). If you die resisting and rejecting Him, you will certainly be separated from Him forever in a diabolical place that you helped furnish. Our Preserver lived a perfectly holy life, obeying every law perfectly and never sinning even in the depths of His heart, though being tempted in every way as we are(47). He didn’t fit the mold the Jews had for their Messiah though, and He certainly isn’t the nice-looking, politically correct, easy-living American Jesus that is commonly portrayed today(35). He was born in a barn to ordinary people and did not choose His circumstances during His life. He has felt the dirt on His feet and walked the street but He was not just another teacher or sage. He submitted Himself to God and became The preeminent Redeemer of all people and the qualifying sacrifice that made it possible for us to know our Father(9) because He completed His work for us when we abused and murdered Him(83). He was not stopped by the Pharisees, not faulted by Pilate and not prevented by Herod. Although he was blameless, he took responsibility for our sin on Himself without complaint(35), exchanging our debt of wrongdoing for His right-standing before God(19, 9). He did not avoid confrontation or mince words(56) and He was not the mousy or unassertive man that many picture, but a strong and dedicated King in a mans body taking your intense beating(9, 55). A crown made from the results of our sedition(7) was driven into His scalp and He was ridiculed and taunted before the elite(35). He suffered so much for us that He became unrecognizable from all of our sin and disease resting on him at once(35), yet at no point did the angels or any particle of creation stop declaring His glory(13). We ought not to have judged The Cornerstone of civilization(1), but His love is deep and true, and He was willing to go a long way to create the opportunity for you to become His(65, 84).
All of us have lied or cheated someone out of something and likely still do sometimes. None of us can live up to even our own moral standards and must humbly accept our weakness and need for Jesus’ mercy and grace(84, 33), for He is our paragon(76). He knew the grievous sins of those He met, but did not call for them to be stoned(34). He knew they could change and encouraged them to. Even at our best, we are inconsistent(64) and should compare ourselves only to His example as no other is worthy, and only Jesus has perfect integrity and is able to present us spotless to The Father(4). God gave the laws of the Old Testament to reveal and amplify the sinful nature that is within all of us(64, 7) so that we would recognize it(18, 11). Our Father wants to protect His children from death(64). It wasn’t meant to save us, just to mitigate the ‘middle ground’ and halfhearted efforts(5). When we read The Ten Commandments and the myriad other laws given to Israel, we identify precisely how and where we are failing to act rightly towards God and others(49, 11). The response he desires is for us to choose to be freed from this unruly state since Jesus Himself has fulfilled the purpose of the laws by coming here and showing us what to do(45, 60) and summarizing their essence in just a few concise commands(33, 1), particularly for the religious legalists and those who play games(48). He completely wiped out our problem by obeying The Law perfectly where we were unable to and taking the appropriate punishment for us(19, 52). All that is necessary is for you to acknowledge this(21) and be reconciled with Him(20, 9). When Adam & Eve were created, they were perfect and free(47), and responsible for taking care of all of God’s creation(52). They were created for a good purpose and should not have chosen to know evil, perverting God’s perfect order and beginning a cycle of death and suffering(7, 5). They basically told Him to leave them so they could be their own god, and so He gave them the option(15, 11). Now we are all in the same boat(5) which is quietly headed away from God, but some of us will quicken, jumping out and swimming away from our selfishness and pride so that we can be graciously rescued from our fate as a castaway(84, 60). There is a terrifying yet unseen battle being waged for your soul(54) and you are being called to join a campaign that is already won(55, 67)! In fact, you have been appointed by Almighty God(58) to His ultimate strike team. He wants to adopt you into His family(36), but it is your responsibility to stand up and be uncompromisingly involved(43, 31). Please accept and surrender to Him right now(8), tell Him you want His forgiveness and begin to repent, or agree that it is wrong and change(25). He doesn’t want us to carry guilt and withdraw because we feel bad, but to continually release it through an honest and contrite heart(90) that is thankful for His forgiveness(16). Start living a new way with new choices and accept the challenge to do whatever He asks of you(16, 52). If you truly become His, your life will never be the same again. Some think that you just repeat a certain prayer and join the club; like instant, ‘Just add water’. You can say you have been saved or reborn(16), go to church every time there is a service and read a chapter of The Bible every day, but that won’t guarantee anything(41, 53). It’s not a magic formula, it’s a practical guide. You must have a committed relationship with Him where you listen for His guidance, wisdom, conviction of hidden sin and cultivation of your heart(78, 1). If we really know Him, we will humbly serve Him(88) and produce fruit or evidence of His Spirit working in and through us(60, 71). His Spirit will testify to a real relationship with Christ(65). If He is real to us, we will possess His character, value His words and dote on Him to others. Sin and death will be arrested in you not by your acts, but because you have voluntarily given your will to His(23). He is more concerned about our feelings for Him than our attempts to please Him(23, 18), our consideration for His qualities rather than our own(52). We acknowledge Him as our King when we fear nothing else but Him and feel the soundness of our inner man despite the outer circumstances(1, 70). There is no threat beside Him; they become irrelevant! We must not only believe in Him, but live in Him by training our thinking to line up with what He says(46, 52). We cannot compartmentalize Him so that He is not part of our intellectual endeavors and money matters and routine duties. What things remove you from His presence or quench His Spirit leading you? Many will look at the surface or take a quick dip, but He wants those who will submerge themselves in His presence(13, 79) and purpose(39, 79) without looking back or fearing ridicule from people(71, 55). After some actual implementation, you realize that it takes little conscious effort to stay in His care and the future is much brighter.
Life today won’t be fair, comfortable or always go the way you want or think it should(15, 30), and it will take much focus and intrepid determination(55, 36). If we are to be like Christ, we will suffer with Him and be resurrected with Him(46, 7). Most people will not take the hard roads of Christ(15, 87), but the payoff for those who do will be worth it(15). This is how His glory is revealed to mankind, because we would not appreciate His light without experiencing darkness. Compared to eternity, it makes no difference if you have lived on earth for 17 or 70 years. Everything will change tomorrow and you only have as long as the air God put in your lungs continues to flow in and out of them. He has given your heart an exact number of beats, and you don’t know how many the person next to you has left. Momentarily(8, 92), you will meet the supreme creator of this vast and awesome universe, described as a consuming fire(2) . He will find your name from among the names of every man, woman and child that was ever conceived, and read what has been written next to it(13). Nothing has eluded The Most High(53) and there will be no deliberation, simply consequences(19). The hard, daring and resolute will be baffled by His unconstrained presence and unable to faint as every word that was spoken in the heart or on the lips is known for it’s intent(56, 63). His redeemed will hear Him say ‘well done, good and faithfull servant'(24, 15) and join the real party(77) where we experience and admire Him infinitely! For now, we must strive to be more like Him by loving and forgiving others(33, 76), overcoming differences(90, 32), bearing with one another despite our many mistakes and faults(33, 43) and always looking to grow the family(33, 74). We must do more than talk about Him or stand on the corner and broadcast how we love Him(18). We must remove barriers to feed and care for His sheep(33, 39); there are no exceptions and He won’t release us from this crucial task(79, 33). It is a privilege to be a part of God’s Church(62) and we must freely serve others out of a thankful and loving heart, not looking to get a return as on an investment(46, 33) or worrying about how it will affect me. A true leader will always serve as Jesus did, not seek to draw attention to himself(68). God’s work is like the most beautiful symphony(from greek(67, 77)) that we will have ever heard, on a scale unimaginable. He is the composer of an engaging and emotional song, as well as the master craftsman of every instrument, which He created specifically for this joyful orchestration of Christ(58). After He has carefully tuned each one to His pleasure here and if we remain in His hands, He will produce a perfect harmony from us with each glorious movement, for all the angels of heaven and our own hearts to enjoy. On our own, we can neither begin to write the song nor render a single pure note. Worship God with others by offering Him your first and best always(1, 92), and get baptised as a symbol of your commitment to Him by dying to yourself and being made new. Be confident that He will not leave you(70) and will perfect His work in you(71). Focus on Him and don’t ever take your eyes off of Him(1, 3)!
This page contains numbered footnotes which reference verses related to the lines of thought used here so it can be used in printed form as a study tool. Verses referring to love are abundant and therefore important in The Bible, as is similarly represented in footnotes such as 33 and 39. The verses referenced are only a fraction of God’s wisdom and the context of each chapter is important for a thorough understanding. If any part of The Bible is reliable and trustworthy, then the balance of it with it’s passages describing God’s immutable and inexhaustible power over everything that exists is absolutely established(60, 3). John is an excellent book to begin with in continuing daily study(32, 68) and thankful prayer is the primary way to spend time with Him(67). Studying stimulates spiritual growth while prayer is our act of submission. Both are essential to a life with God, in contrast to the distraction and superficiality of American culture. Don’t just brush up against God or use Him as a cosmetic for your life, but really get to know Him(31, 52)! Church events and Bible study should feel more like going to the gym than watching a movie because the focus should be on Him and we are striving to do and be the ‘impossible'(43). Hearing The Truth makes us believe and trust Him, which makes us use what we know, which reflects His Majesty’s grace before all observers(of which we are one). In The Bible, people always ran into God when they went ‘out there‘ and did the hard or scary stuff(33). If we don’t know any ‘undesirable’ or marginalized people- addicts, mentally ill, gangstas, poor, homeless, terminally ill, heretics, sex slaves, abused children or troubled veterans we might need to re-evaluate what we are doing(43, 79). Compassion is love that has put on work clothes. Be willing to get your hands dirty telling others what it means to be a simple disciple of Jesus Christ(39, 76), reproducing His character(not ours) in other people and working together to accomplish His will in His people. Also, see Our God Is, I Am, and Resources for study. Please contact us with questions or for more help.