If It Were Not So: Hope in Christ – Part Two
“Find rest, O my soul, in God alone; my hope comes from him.”
This article is Continued from Hope in Christ: Part One and is part of the If It Were Not So… Series
Is it possible for one of God’s chosen to be deceived? Eve in her perfect form, not yet a sinful creature, a child of God was deceived!
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Salvation is given by grace to those who believe. There is nothing I or you can do save our selves. In fact, we could live as a monk alone in a monastery with no one to talk to and we would still be transgressors of God’s law in need of the blood of the Lamb.
So, where do works and good fruits come into play? Is it possible to lose your salvation? How do we know we are saved? Can we know we are saved?
These are very important questions to ask! We CAN know we are saved. The Bible says,
“These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.” 1 John 5:13
When we confess our sins before God and ask him to come into our lives there is work to be done! We cannot expect to receive the covering of Jesus blood if we do not bear fruit. The Bible says,
“Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them. Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.” Matthew 7:19-21
As with any heart issue – it is not what you do, but what is in your heart! God does know the difference, so we need not worry that He won’t make the right judgment.
When Jesus came, he lived a perfect life, free of sin. He set an example that we as His believers are to follow to the best of our ability. True repentance means that we are convicted of a sin and we ask forgiveness and seek out God’s will for our lives on a daily basis. It does not mean we will not make mistakes, however, it does mean we will grieve in our hearts at our own sin. We will understand that every time we sin, we are breaking God’s heart all over again. Jesus died for me! He DIED for me. He died that second death talked of in Revelation.
“The fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.” Revelation 21:8
“Now from the sixth hour there was darkness over all the land unto the ninth hour. And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” Matthew 27:45,46
Matthew Henry says, concerning the death of Christ, “During the three hours which the darkness continued, Jesus was in agony, wrestling with the powers of darkness, and suffering his Father’s displeasure against the sin of man, for which he was now making his soul an offering. Never were there three such hours since the day God created man upon the earth, never such a dark and awful scene; it was the turning point of that great affair, man’s redemption and salvation.”
You see, Jesus did not just die. He felt God’s separation from Him. He felt that separation from God that all unbelievers will feel on the judgment day.
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Jesus’ heart aches when we sin against Him. Obedience to Him is not a lot to ask! And ask He did. Jesus said,
“If you love me, keep my commandments.” John 14:15
Jesus commands us to obedience. He asks that we follow Him – not just believe in Him. James 2 tells us:
“Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble. But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead?” James 2:19,20
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Not everyone who believes in Jesus will enter the kingdom of Heaven. Jesus said,
“Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.” Matthew 7:23
The verse above leads me to believe that there will be some who go to church every week who will not enter into the gates of Heaven because despite their professed faith, they simply never truly followed God.
The Bible says:
“No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.” Matthew 6:24
“Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.” Philippians 4:8
“I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.” Romans 12:1,2
We are told to present our lives as holy and acceptable to God. To be transformed! We are told to live in this world but not be a part of this world. Have you come to a place in your life where nothing matters more than what God thinks? If you love this world more than you love God, you are in trouble.
What can you say is different and holy in your life that an unbeliever cannot? Are you really different, or set apart from the world? Or are you living like the world, but simply going to church each week? You are to present your body as a living sacrifice!
Jesus is coming to take His people home very soon. Are you ready? If you knew that Jesus would return in 6 months would you change anything you do? Think about it.
Satan is waiting each day to trip you up. It is so important that you arm yourself with the Sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God. Know what your Bible says! Commit it to your heart today.
“Let no man deceive you with vain words: for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience.” Ephesians 5:6
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Do not forsake God’s Word because you are busy or you think it is boring or because you trust your pastor or other trusted adviser (including myself) to teach it to you. You need to read the Bible for yourself. Study it carefully. Don’t assume that what you think you know about the Bible is actually founded on Scripture. Know what you believe, but more importantly – why you believe it.
Stand firm on God’s Word.