Assurance Of An Eternal Heaven

Can I really be sure that I will be in heaven when this life is past? That seems to be the question that concerns us most. I know that various religious people and groups tell me a lot of things and most of what I hear is in conflict with what others say. Is there a way that I can be absolutely sure that I will be in heaven? I don’t want to hear more of man’s theories or philosophies on the subject… I want to be sure… as soon as possible!
Then, I would submit to you that we consult with the One who has set the qualifications for entrance into His heaven. Surely, if He wants us in heaven He will tell us how to get there. Amazingly, God has already given us the rule book (The Bible). The rules are simple and to the point. He has preserved the rules for us through many centuries by giving the message of redemption to special men so they could record God’s Word so we may have it today. There is a battle on right now between God (the Creator and author of the rules) and Satan. Satan supports and distributes lies. He tries to get people to fall for the lies that he promotes. That is why it is so very important to consult the Book of Truth– The Bible. A good reliable translation is the KJV (1611)

Let’s look briefly at the facts that we should know, then we can progress from there…

Fact #1 All people are sinners…

Romans 3:23;
For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;”
Ecclesiastes 7:20;
For there is not a just man upon earth, that doeth good, and sinneth not.”
Romans 6:23;
“For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”

Death means you will not be in God’s heaven. There will be separation from God for all eternity in hell.
Simply stated, we are kept out of heaven and doomed to be in hell because of our sin problem. Something had to be done to provide forgiveness and cleansing of those sins. Heaven is a perfectly prepared place for a prepared people. So then, no sin can possibly go into God’s perfect heaven.

Fact #2 God loves you…

John 3:16;
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
Romans 5:8;
But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.”
Jesus shed His perfect, sinless blood so that we can have the forgiveness and cleansing from the guilt and penalty of sin.
Ephesians 1:7;
In whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace;“

Fact #3 We must repent and believe that Jesus paid the complete price for our sin.

Acts 16:31;
“And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.”
Romans 10:9-10,13;
9That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. 10For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.  13For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.
John 1:12;
But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:”
John 5:24;
Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life. (note: this is present tense; RIGHT NOW!!!)
John 3:36;
He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.
I John 5:10-13;
10He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself: he that believeth not God hath made him a liar; because he believeth not the record that God gave of his Son. 11And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. 12He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life. 13These 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.”
John 10:28;
And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.
Believing is simply… putting your whole trust in Jesus as the One who died in your place for your sins. On the other hand, it also means that we dare not subtract from His finished work on Calvary’s cross. We must come to Him as a guilty, defiled sinners and receive by faith the gift of eternal life in the person of Jesus Christ, thus making us his blood-bought children and forgiving us the guilt and penalty of our sins.
Ephesians 2:8-9;
8For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: 9Not of works, lest any man should boast.”
Some have tried to add to God’s plan of salvation by telling people they must do certain good works or keep certain church ordinances. Works of any sort can never help. Titus 3:5 tells us: “Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us.” Nothing can be added to, or taken away from what God has already done to secure our salvation. Our salvation does not become more, or less, secure by what we do or do not do. If it could be of works, then we have not really trusted Jesus by faith as our personal Saviour from sin.

When one is born-again (John 3:7Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.), there is a difference. There is new joy, new goals and a new determination to do what pleases our Heavenly Father. We also become aware of those around us that are lost and begin praying that they, too, would soon trust Jesus as their Saviour. The Bible tells us that we are a new creature in Christ by trusting Jesus by faith as our Saviour.
II Corinthians 5:15,17,18;
15And that he died for all, that they which henceforth live unto themselves, but unto him which died for them, and rose again… 17Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new… 18And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation;”

Assurance of salvation can only be a reality when we have been “born-again”.
John 3:3;
Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.

The Holy Spirit now bears witness with our spirit that we are right now, the children of God.
Romans 8:16;
“The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:”
Assurance is based on the promises of God. (not on feelings or emotions). God always tells us the truth. God wants you to have a settled confidence of salvation. Take Him for what He has told you in His word.
John 20:31;
“But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name.”
Romans 8:35-39;
35Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? 36As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. 37Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. 38For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, 39Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
Ephesians 1:13-14;
13In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise, 14Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory.”

Claim it by faith. “God said it and I can believe it”. Since you now have Jesus, you are a child of the King. Rejoice, be glad and walk close to your “new-found” friend who will never leave you nor forsake you. (Hebrews 13:5b; “for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.”) Get into a good gospel preaching church, be baptized by immersion, and study your Bible, and pray. Grow in the things of God, and serve Him until you are actually in the very presence of the One who planned it all. If you still have not believed on Jesus Christ as your Saviour, I would urge you to settle the issue today. Pray and invite Jesus to be your Saviour and begin that new life. You will be glad that you did.
R.L.D
©2014 Mark Davis

Continued Reading:

Clothing

What does God’s Word say about a person’s clothing; what a person should wear or not wear?

Matthew 6:25 – 33;
“Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment? 26 Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they? 27 Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature? 28 And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin: 29 And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 30 Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, [shall he] not much more [clothe] you, O ye of little faith? 31 Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? 32 (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things. 33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.”

1 Corinthians 6:19 – 20 –
 “What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the
Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye
are not your own? 20 For ye are bought with a price:
therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit,
which are God’s.”

1 Timothy 2:9
“In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel,
with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with braided hair,
or gold, or pearls, or costly array;”

– Deuteronomy 22:5
“The woman shall not wear that which pertaineth unto a man,
neither shall a man put on a woman’s garment:
for all that do so are abomination unto the LORD thy God.”

1 Corinthians 11:14 – 15 –
“Doth not even nature itself teach you, that,
if a man have long hair, it is a shame unto him?
15 But if a woman have long hair, it is a glory to her:
for her hair is given her for a covering.”

Romans 8:5 
“For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh;
but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit.”

Luke 12:22 -24;  “And he said unto his disciples, Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat; neither for the body, what ye shall put on. 23 The life is more than meat, and the body is more than raiment. 24 Consider the ravens: for they neither sow nor reap; which neither have storehouse nor barn; and God feedeth them: how much more are ye better than the fowls?”

– James 2:3 – 4
“And ye have respect to him that weareth the gay clothing,
and say unto him, Sit thou here in a good place;
and say to the poor, Stand thou there,
or sit here under my footstool:
4 Are ye not then partial in yourselves,
and are become judges of evil thoughts?”

 

1 Timothy 6:7 – 8
“For we brought nothing into this world,
and it is certain we can carry nothing out.
8 And having food and raiment let us be therewith content.”

 ©Mark Davis 2014

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Time For Some Spring Cleaning

Spring Cleaning

Since it is getting to be Spring right now, I thought that this article would be fitting:

Do you remember that picture that you forwarded (SHARED) in Facebook, you know the one that had that inspirational quote on it that looked very positive that you thought that you could relate with. You felt that you could SHARE it with no worries of it coming back on you – as a Christian, it wouldn’t tarnish your testimony in front of your unsaved friends.

Part of being a Christian is forwarding a good Christian testimony in everything that we do. Some of us have many unsaved friends in our social networks; you know the ones – they are the ones that were your partying buddies from before you were saved and you never “cleaned house” after you were saved, thinking that you might be able to influence them to be able to see Christ in your life and you could be a good witness to them.

Or, they could be family members who are watching you to see if you are for real – to see if Jesus is for real – to see if they might want what you have, now that you are saved.

They could be your co-workers that might be offended if you weren’t their friend any longer…

I think you get the idea about your friends.

I have been noticing, lately, quite a few of my friends on Facebook (and other social media accounts that I hold, but don’t pay much attention to), that post those seemingly harmless pictures that feature a nice quote or picture that, on the surface, looked like it might be a good thing to SHARE with your friend-base.

Did you happen to notice who it was that you are promoting with that “harmless” SHARE? What do I mean?

In Facebook, at the top of the picture, next to your name, we see whose photo it is that you are SHARING. Sometimes you might even see a website mentioned on the photo that “advertises” a site and/or organization that may, or may not, be something good (or harmless) – so you think.

We owe it to ourselves, in fact, moreover, we owe it to God, to check things out a little closer – to dig into it and see what you really are promoting when you SHARE these pictures (or statuses) – or for that matter, even LIKE-ing them will show up on your friend’s walls, now.

Put your mouse over that person’s name (or organization’s name) and it will pop up a mini version of the person’s home photo and you can read just a little bit about who/what they are, if you don’t know them personally. If there is still a question, actually click on that link and see some of the posts that they have on their wall – see what they represent and stand for. If it is God-glorifying, then proceed.

Recently, I looked at a photo that a friend of mine had posted that mentioned praying (seemed like something Christian, right? Proceed…). I looked at whose picture it was (as I showed above) and I didn’t recognize them. I proceeded to their page. I saw some things that I didn’t agree with, and I knew that God could not be glorified with. I saw a picture of a man that was standing there, nude, with his hands covering certain parts of his anatomy – I’m sure that God loved that one!

Another friend, last week, shared a quote that sounded pretty harmless and even seemed to have a God-glorifying theme to it. Again, I followed the links and found that it was promoting a wicken/witchcraft site. I privately messaged the person and they promptly unliked/unshared the photo. Not because I told them that it wasn’t good to have on their wall, but because they hadn’t realized where the picture actually came from. They thanked me for alerting them to the error.

Where am I going with all of this?

What most people don’t realize is, these things are not harmless or irrelevant.  When you post something, you are making that “thing” your own.  You are identifying yourself with anything/everything that is underneath that picture/quote.  It is as if you are the one actually saying what is on that post.

I am not trying to tell you what to do. I’m not saying that you can’t have interests that are not directly related to Christianity – I know I do (as hard as that might be to picture). But what I am saying is that we need to be very attentive to where these pictures are coming from and where they are suggesting to your friends to go – maybe because YOU suggested it by re-SHARING that picture.

Maybe you need to go back through your social accounts and see what I’m talking about. You might have some that are questionable that you really should take down.

Remember, you may be the only Bible that your friends might ever read. Make sure that you are portraying the same thing that the Bible would say, so that you, by your actions, might show them the way to their saving realization of Jesus Christ and His free gift of salvation/eternal life.

In Colossians 3:8, Paul tells us; “But now ye also put off all these; anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy communication out of your mouth.” You might not be “saying” these things but by having them on your wall, you are “saying” everything that you might have ever posted – and, your friends (and you) can go back in time and see things that you have done, all the way back to when you first started posting things online (on that site). And you may have totally forgotten some of those things that you said… they didn’t!

In Ephesians 4:29, it says, “Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.” When we hear this it sounds like it is talking about only those things that come out of our mouths, right? Wrong!

The concept behind this verse is, anything that you do and say that others can observe. “Edifying” means, ministering to or educational to the hearer (something that someone can learn something from) or even building up.

“…That it may minister grace unto the hearers”, means literally, “edify profitably”. That means, in the context of this verse, that the contents of your “speech” needs to be promoting (profiting) things that would lead people to God. Whatever you “say” needs to be something that would not only be “harmless”, but actually push people in the direction of God.

1 Corinthians 15:33 “Be not deceived: evil communications corrupt good manners.” 1 Corinthians 15:50 “Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption.”

In verse 33, we are told to NOT be deceived – this is happening, whether we realize it or not; whether we want it to happen or not – evil – whether intended (by you) to be evil or not – CORRUPTS good manners – in other words: Whatever communication (of any sort – written, spoken or any other type) that we “promote” or say that is “evil” WILL corrupt those that are hearing/seeing it.

People! You CAN’T UN-see something! Once it has passed your retina, it is in your brain and once it is there, Satan can/will use it to corrupt you! If you are pushing it out in front of your friends, you are corrupting them!

Look at verse 50: “flesh and blood” doesn’t inherit the kingdom of God – isn’t able to get into heaven; “flesh and blood” means “things of earth” or “worldly things” – things that are worldly or, to break it down even further, un-Godly things – are not going to make it into heaven!

If something is “corrupt”, we think of it as “dirty” or “unclean” – worldly things are unclean! Thus, “incorruption” is referring to “the presence of God” or “heaven”.

Let’s put it all together now, if you haven’t already: Worldly things (un-Godly things) will not make it into heaven! Putting it into our model here: the things that we say/do/promote to others that are un-Godly will not influence others to want to go to the presence of God or heaven.

God cannot bless us for pushing out in front of others, things that are not Godly – not to mention the scars that we are imposing on others by putting these things in front of them to see before they have the ability to accept or reject them for themselves.  They can’t UN-see it!

We, as Christians, are responsible for spreading the Gospel of Jesus Christ in all that we say and do. And, for everything that we say and do, we will be responsible before God – whether it is good or evil! (2 Corinthians 5: 10)

Christians, take my suggestions and take some time to go through your social media pages and delete out those things that are unclean, contain any level of profanity, have questionable pictures or even promote un-Godly websites. Then, as we go forward, before you SHARE or repost those sayings or pictures, take a little time and investigate to see who it is that is promoting such a picture.

Then:

Philippians 4:8 “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.”

Repost, or SHARE, these things…

 ©2014 Mark Davis

Continued Reading:

Can God Really Forget Your Sins?

In response to a question from a reader:

“This question is off topic…but what do you think this verse means?”

Hebrews 8:12
“For I will be merciful to their unrighteousness,
and their sins and their iniquities will I remember no more.”

“Do you think it’s bad to go as far to say that when God sees us, He doesn’t see any of our sin and only views us as perfect and righteous?”

This is a great question and one that many people mistranslate much of the time.

The reason I say this is that there are also other scriptures that back this up but also clarify it more, to the point that it changes what it looks like it says in this scripture.

(Hebrews 10:16-17; Psalms 25:7; Psalms 65:3; Isaiah 43:25; Isaiah 44:22; Jeremiah 33:8; Jeremiah 50:20; Micah 7:19; Acts 13:38-39; Romans 11:27; Ephesians 1:7; Colossians 1:14; 1 John 1:7-9; 1 John 2:1-2; Revelation 1:5)

The actual thought behind this statement is this: God the Son – Jesus – came to earth, shed His blood as the perfect sacrifice to forgive our sins, once and for all, and we as Christians have chosen to accept that sacrifice as payment for our sins. That being the case, the fact becomes that Jesus’ blood has enveloped and covered our sins so that it appears that they never happened, in God’s sight.  Once we have been saved, we are saved for eternity – we can NEVER lose His salvation.

Think about this:
If we sin, God sees it. He sees us on the very inside of our souls and sees every sin that we have ever done or ever will do. Since God is omniscient, He knows everything.

Can God forget something to the point that He can’t see it ever again? Since He created man and we are fallible; even though we have asked Jesus to come into our heart and His blood has forgiven and cleansed us of all of our past sins.  At that point, in God’s redemptive eyes, we have never sinned and are therefore perfect in His sight making us, because of Jesus’ blood, worthy of entering Heaven (since there can be no sin in heaven).

Did those sins disappear? NO! We can still remember them. We remember what we did, what it was like when we did it, how we felt and we may even have a propensity of committing that sin again (or one like it).

Can God, now, not see any of that? Yes. Because He knows us better than a brother knows us or our best friend. Being fallible, we have the ability to root up that memory of that action (sin); He doesn’t wipe our memory clean. Even if God had forgotten all of our sins prior to our salvation, if we remember that sin after that, God would know of that sin again.

It is just impossible for God to forget our sins to the point that it appears to Him as though we never sinned. He knows that we are “blood-bought”, “born again”, fallible Christians.

He knows that we have sinned but He also sees Christ in our lives and says, “Since you know My Son, you can come into Heaven.” Jesus has become our door pass into the Party of the Universe!

Remember that I said that Jesus’ blood forgives all of our sins up to that point – the point of salvation?

What happens to the sins that we will inevitably commit after that?

Won’t that then make us dirty in God’s sight and unable to enter Heaven? Yes, and No. We will be dirty but since we still have Jesus in our lives, and the Holy Spirit dwelling within us; we will still be allowed entrance to Heaven.

Does that then give us a free pass to commit any sin we want after we are “saved”? NO! The whole chapter of Romans 6 talks about that.

What happens to the sins that we commit after we are saved?

Wow, that is a whopper of a question. The sins that we committed prior to salvation had, and still have, their consequences.  Even so, sin also has its consequences after we are saved and, if it results (or resulted) in some other consequence, regardless if it is physical, emotional or even judgmental (earthly).

Some of our sins are not seen by other people, maybe they were just a thought, but God sees them and so you are sinning against Him.

Much like the earthly courts, we will also stand before Jesus and face accountability for our unrepentant sins and our actions, whether right or wrong (1 Corinthians 3:1-11). Because of the verses before indicating that God remembers them no more, I believe that the judgment that the believers will face will be two-fold: 1) Judgment for the sins left unconfessed before God prior to the judgment (in Heaven), and 2) Judgement for the acts of service that we did and DID NOT do for God while we had the opportunity here on earth. Yes, we will be charged for the things that we knew we were supposed to do to please God and yet still didn’t do them (James 4:17).

Just for the record, the judgment that we will face as Christians is NOT the same judgment that the unsaved will face. The believer’s judgment is called the “Judgement Seat of Christ” or the “Bema Seat Judgment” (1 Corinthians 3:11-15; Jeremiah 17:7-10; 1 Peter 1:17; Romans 14:11-12; 2 Corinthians 5:9-10; Matthew 25:23; Proverbs 24:12). The unbeliever’s judgment is called the “Great White Throne Judgment” that will ultimately penalize the unsaved to an eternal separation from God in the Lake of Fire with the Devil and his angels. (Matthew 25:41; Revelation 20:11-15)

Clara Barton, founder of the American Red Cross, was reminded one day of a vicious deed that someone had done to her years before. But she acted as if she had never even heard of the incident. “Don’t you remember it?” her friend asked. “No,” came Barton’s reply, “I distinctly remember forgetting it.”

Luis Palau, Experiencing God’s Forgiveness, Multnomah Press, 1985.

That little story may be a bit humorous but I assure you that the difference between what God sees and what God doesn’t hold us accountable for, is not going to be too funny when we finally stand before God at the Judgment, whether it be the judgment for the believers or the judgment for the unbelievers.

Friend, if you fall under the heading of the unbeliever, I urge you to settle that between you and God.  Accept Christ’s sacrifice of His life on the cross as He shed His blood to be able to forgive your sins and mine, so that we may no longer have to stand accountable before Jesus and be thrown into everlasting fire (Hell) for never accepting that FREE gift of forgiveness and with it, eternal life in Heaven.

If you need any help in asking God for that forgiveness and don’t really know what to do, please contact me and I will be more than happy to guide you along.  You will never be sorry that you did.

If you have any further questions after studying through this article, please note them at the bottom of this page or you can go to our Contact Us Page to leave a more private comment that will come straight to me.  I will not try to embarrass you, but rather, I just want to make sure your questions are all cleared up.

God Bless You,

–Mark

©2013 Mark Davis

Continued Reading:

What Has Happened?

ChurchPeople
Written by: Robert L. Davis
December 19, 2013

“If my people, which are called by my name,
shall humble themselves, and pray,
and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways;
then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin,
and will heal their land.”
– 2 Chronicles 7:14

This verse is clear and precise. It would be easy to think of how many people this passage of scripture would apply to… if they would only pay attention. In reality, this is exactly what is needed by everyone that names the name of Jesus Christ as their Saviour.

We can coast along in life thinking that all is well and what we have to do now is to go through some religious procedures and all will be wonderful. We might even try to deny that we have any responsibility to God or to the lost world around us.

One day (possibly very soon), the trumpet will sound, the voice of the archangel will echo throughout the world and the dead in Christ will be resurrected. Then, the living (in Christ) will be caught away to be with the Lord forever (1 Thessalonians 4: 13-18). We can think of what it will be like then and rejoice, and rightfully so.

But, what about the opportunities that we have and do not use wisely for the glory of God?

What went wrong?

Why is there so much corruption and sin in the world and even in many churches?

Is this just a normal thing or can something be done about it? Oh yes, we can sit back and observe and even criticize what is going on nationally, politically, socially and religiously. But, what are we willing to do about it?

In the Word of God, we are told that there will be wars and rumors of wars, famines, earth quakes, and pestilence in the time before the Lord Jesus Christ returns for the “blood-bought”, redeemed ones. And yet, even though we do not like to hear of these things or experience them, they are happening, and with increasing frequency.

Are we going to stick our head in the sand and pretend that these things are only figurative or even a myth or a mirage?

I am sure we will not be able to cause a tsunami to be calm or a tornado to not tear its way through cities or the countryside. Just possibly these things are being used by God to try to get our attention so we will cling close to Him and serve Him in these last days. We can be used of God to reach souls with the gospel message before it is eternally too late.

Not too many years ago, you could go into most churches and hear a good Bible message delivered by a godly pastor who loved his people and was interested in seeing that they were fed from the Word of God. You could expect to see souls won to the Lord and new Christians baptized on a regular basis. There was an alter call and people responding by either getting saved or, possibly, there was some pressing spiritual need in their lives.

But, the picture has changed considerably. In many of the churches that were once enthusiastic for the Gospel and serving God there is now a coldness and complacency. The preacher seems to be more interested in his retirement, golf score or going to some ecumenical function which would demand compromise of the doctrines of the Word of God.

The gospel message has been so watered down in most churches that you cannot find anything that faintly resembles salvation by grace through faith in the finished work of Jesus Christ.

You might listen, without success, to find these facts:

  1. Man is a sinner, totally depraved and on his way to a Christ-less eternity in the Lake of Fire;
  2. Jesus (the perfect, sinless, virgin-born Son of God) was the only one qualified to take on Himself the sins of all mankind;
  3. He was buried and rose from the dead on the third day, then, after several days, ascended into heaven to be once again with the Father;
  4. We can have forgiveness of our sins through faith in Jesus Christ and His finished work on the cross at Calvary;
  5. Being born-again, we can now live victorious lives by God’s power.

What has happened to cause such a massive devastation of the foundational truths of the Word of God?

It has been a sly, steady denial of the Word. In many areas, it started with a new beat of music (or rather noise). Some thought that they needed to compromise the music standards to, hopefully, attract people to attend their services. They brought in the music of the ungodly world and incorporated it into the services. They had their combos and many of the 7–11 type songs (that is 7 words sung over and over again for about 11 times). They called them “praise songs”. They even had their special praise teams.

Then, some of those cold, dormant churches even sent some of their promising young people off to Bible college or seminary. Some of those schools have long since departed from the teaching of the Word of God. Instead, they teach evolution, nice sounding theories, and other non-Biblical doctrines and subjects.

Then, there are the Bible colleges and universities that teach many right things… but, the vast majority are failing miserably to train their young, potential preachers how to preach the Word, and how to win souls to Christ. They are turning out future missionaries and pastors who are not in tune with what the gospel is. They might preach well on things pertaining to the Christian life and give encouragement, but they are not preaching the gospel!!!

Earnestly contending for the faith (Jude 3) is unheard of… I personally had the occasion where I asked 6 people who were seasoned church members: “What is the gospel”? One by one they gave their idea as to what they thought the gospel is. Some said it was the Bible, another said it was the teachings of Jesus… whatever that meant, I am not really sure. Others gave a philosophy or idea. I never heard from them what the gospel is, as explained so plainly in 1 Corinthians 15:1-4.

I believe the leadership of our schools, Bible colleges and universities needs to train these students in what the gospel is and how to effectively present it in their teaching and preaching. Doesn’t the Bible proclaim that if the gospel is hid, it is hidden from the lost in 2 Corinthians 4:3-4?

Are there other things that have led us down the road of ineffectiveness? YES, there is more. We have only touched the “tip of the iceberg”.

Consider the vast confusion that has set into many churches about “which Bible should I use?” Some so-called scholars have thought it necessary to revise, re-translate, mutilate, and desecrate the Word of God. I believe Satan knows that his time is getting short and the catching away of the born-again ones is getting very close. He is bringing out his ”big guns”. He wants to create as much doubt and confusion as he can possibly muster up.

Do a search on the internet regarding how many English translations there are. I was amazed to learn that there are 250 (plus or minus a few). Some of these translations are done by people who have a certain pet “viewpoint”. Some translators are unbelievers and some dearly love the Lord and His Word. Some have an agenda they are trying to sell to the public.

Why can’t we stick with a good, standard translation that we can memorize, read, preach from, and win souls from??? I highly recommend the King James Version. It has what is needed today. It is very accurate and needs no apology.

There is also the ecumenical movement. This is an effort of some “religious” groups to bring all churches into line with a common goal, doctrine, and message. Their message is plainly a deviation from the faith that was once delivered to the saints. They have departed from the solid teachings of the Word of God.

They would rather give up the teachings of the scripture for the sake of “getting together”. This is compromise. Many of these people are blind leaders of the blind. They are teaching the Devil’s gospel. Sometimes this process starts small with a cooperation outreach of some kind, or ministerial alliance, or a council of churches. They all involve compromise and a forsaking of the teachings of the Word of God.

God has told us that He wants us to “Preach the Word”. Second Timothy 4:2 tells us: “Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine.” God doesn’t want His people to compromise the things of God with the tricks and devices of Satan. We must stay faithful to the Word.

Remember… The church is no stronger than its leaders. Weak leaders will result in weak undernourished people. God exhorts us in Ephesians 6:10“Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.”

We need revival.

We need to get back to the “BOOK”.

We need to make sure our schools are strong and stay strong.

We need to encourage godly pastors and missionaries to stay true to the Word of God.

We need to do our part as individuals who have trusted Christ as our Saviour, in staying in the Word, witnessing and winning souls to the Lord Jesus.

May the Lord Jesus find us faithful to His great cause until we are caught up to be with the Lord, to be with Him forever.

R.L.D.

©2013 Mark Davis

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Other articles written by Robert L. Davis:

Joyce Meyer – Anointed Woman of God or Heretic? (Part 1)

Christians Are Us:

“I don’t like writing negative things about other people, especially those who claim to be brothers and sisters in Christ, however, I feel that the Lord has called me to be a watchman on the wall. It isn’t a job I asked for, but ever since I read the following passage in Ezekiel, many years ago, I have felt compelled to warn people from sinning against the Lord, and from following false doctrine and false teachers. ~ Ezekiel 3:16-21 ~” Cheryl Showers

 

Recently, there has been talkings around me about the credibility of Joyce Meyer.  In this article, Cheryl only touches on some of the things that make her a person that you really don’t want to learn from.  Many of her false teachings are woven into truth and it sounds really good and believable.  As Cheryl shows, Joyce is absolutely in the “False Teacher” category – for the books, she is in my books too.

 

Christians, please be careful of what and who you read.  The more truth you put into your brain, the easier it will be to keep the untruth out.  Saturate your life with God’s Word and Godly things to look at, hear, drool over :-) , and in doing all that, you have no choice but to be thinking about Godly things.  When you have “God” swarming in your head it is near impossible to let sin in; keeping you away from committing sin.  Abide in Christ (John 15:4-7)!

 

God bless you all.

–Mark

©2013 Mark Davis

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Originally posted on Burning Fire Shut Up In My Bones:

Image Credit: Zachery Oliver

Image Credit:
Zachery Oliver

I love the Lord, and I love His word. In fact, I’m very passionate about Him, His word, and His people. His word is life, therefore, it is of utmost importance that we know His word and not twist it or alter it in any way. Otherwise, we run the risk of leading many people astray.

Teach me Your decrees, O Lord; I will keep them to the end.

~ Psalm 119:33 — NLT ~

Image Credit: ubdavid.org

Image Credit:
ubdavid.org

This scripture is a promise to the Lord, that if He will teach me His decrees, I will keep them to the end. Now, it’s important that I share with you what keep means in this scripture, because it means much more than I ever realized until I studied it.

The Hebrew word for keep is natsar (pronouncednä-tsār’), which means:

I. to guard, watch, watch…

View original 1,726 more words

Why Would YOU Want To Be A Christian?

Wow, what a question.  Have you ever considered why you or anyone else would want to be a Christian? If you were to ask that to 100 people, you would probably get 100 different answers.

I think that God, or Christianity of some sort, has a different appeal to everybody but ultimately, when the answers are sifted out, you come down to the basic reason of Good nature versus Bad nature.

On the Good Side, most people’s image of Christianity says:

  • If you are at the lowest that you think you can get, Christianity can make everything better for you.
  • If you are having problems, regardless what they are, God can make things all better.
  • If you have poor health, Jesus will heal you – just like He did in the Bible.
  • I want to be rich and Christians say that if you are walking closely with God then He will let you have anything you want.
  • I want to see my deceased loved ones.
  • And the list could go on for a long time.

When in actuality, God, in His Word, The Holy Bible, says:

Come unto me all you who are weary
and I will give you rest.

-Matthew 11:28-30

“But as it is written, Eye hath not seen,
nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man,
the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.”

-1 Corinthians 2:9

2In my Father’s house are many mansions:
if it were not so, I would have told you.
I go to prepare a place for you.
3 And if I go and prepare a place for you,
I will come again, and receive you unto myself;
that where I am, there ye may be also.

-John 14:2-3

4 “And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes;
and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow,
nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain:
for the former things are passed away.
5 And he that sat upon the throne said,
Behold, I make all things new. And he said unto me,
Write: for these words are true and faithful.”

-Revelation 21:4-5

But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him
shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him
shall be in him a well of water springing up
into everlasting life.

-John 4:14

13But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren,
concerning them which are asleep,
that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope.
14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again,
even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.
15 For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord,
that we which are alive and remain
unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep.
16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout,
with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God:
and the dead in Christ shall rise first:

17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be
caught up together with them in the clouds,
to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.
18 Wherefore comfort one another with these words.”
-1 Thessalonians 4:13-18 

Christ transforms the Christians

Yet, on the Bad Side, people would say about Christianity:

  • “There really is no hell.”
  • “If God is real, He is very loving and would never send anyone to hell.”
  • “Christianity is nothing but a bunch of rules that if you break them you go to hell.  There is no way to keep them all so why try?”
  • “The God I know of from the Bible is not loving at all, in fact He is very angry and vengeful. Why would I want to spend eternity with a God that caused the whole earth to be flooded and He chose to make total nations be slaughtered by His people?”
  • “I’m having too much fun doing the things that the Bible says are wrong.”
  • “I believe that when we die we don’t go anywhere – there is no eternity – we just cease to exist.”
  • “I believe that hell is the bad stuff that we go through while we are on earth and when we die, God lets us all go to heaven.  If we are really good, we get really nice things when we get there.”
  • “I go to church every time the doors are open and I even give my 10% to the church. I try to be as good as I can and love everyone else.  That should mean that I will get into heaven if I’ve been good enough.”
  • “I was baptized when I was little and went through catechism so I should skip purgatory and go right into heaven when I die.”
  • “God has blessed me with plenty of money while I’ve been on the earth and I’ve even given a lot of it to the poor. Since I’ve done so well on earth, then God must love me enough to let me into heaven. I’ve never done anything really bad so I should have no problem getting into heaven.”
  • “I don’t think that anybody can really KNOW that they are going to heaven for certain.”
  • “And there are so many more that I can’t list them all, but most of them are similar to these.”

Instead of giving you a bunch of scriptures that refute what I just wrote above, let me ask you a question (or three or four).

What is it that you are relying on to get YOU to Heaven?

If you were to die in the next 10 minutes and you are standing face to face with God and He asks you, “Why should I let you into My Heaven?” — What would you say to Him?  

If what you were relying on to get you to Heaven was wrong, would you like to know? If you can say, “YES“, to this question, please read on.

If you can relate to any of these statements on the BAD side here, and your answer happens to be, “NO“, then you can close out of this page and find something else to read (I suggest reading “I’m Dead, Now What?“) because you won’t want to listen to anything that I have to say anyway.

Moving on…

According to the Bible only (I am not making any of this up) since we count the Bible as God’s own Words – He doesn’t just come out and talk to us person to person (yet).

First – Every man is a sinner (breaker of any/all of God’s 10 commandments as set forth in Exodus 20)

James 2:10 -
“For whosoever shall keep the whole law,
and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all.”

Romans 3:10 -
“As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one.”

Romans 3:23 -
“For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;”

Second – The penalty of sin is eternal death!

Romans 6:23 -
“For the wages of sin is death;
but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”

Third – Eternal Life is offered to us ONLY through Jesus.

John 3:15-16 -
15That whosoever believeth in him should not perish,
but have eternal life.

16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son,
that whosoever believeth in him should not perish,
but have everlasting life.

John 14:6 -
Jesus saith unto him, I am the way,
the truth, and the life:
no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.

Romans 5:8 -
“But God commendeth his love toward us, in that,
while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.”

Fourth – How do we receive this GIFT of God?

Romans 10:9 – 13 -
9 “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus,
and shalt believe in thine heart
that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness;
and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.
11 For the scripture saith,
Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.
12 For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek:
for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him.
13 For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

It’s as easy as that!

If you are relying on anything more than what I’ve just described, then you are not putting ALL of your faith in Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross and His redeeming blood that was shed to wash away all of our sins.

God doesn’t want us to add anything to this because if we do, it becomes a “works based” salvation. What do I mean by that?  I mean that if there was ANYTHING that we could personally add in order to get to heaven, we would be relying on ourselves to do something special to buy our salvation into heaven.  God won’t let that happen!

Why?  Because, if you or I were able to add anything to that very basic salvation then, whether on this side of heaven or even once we get into heaven (which won’t happen), we would be bragging to our friends or anyone we come in contact with about what WE did to get to heaven. Can you tell me what sin that would be called?

PRIDE!

Proverbs 16:18 -
“Pride goeth before destruction,
and an haughty spirit before a fall.”

Ephesians 2:8-9 -
8 “For by grace are ye saved through faith;
and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
9 Not of works, lest any man should boast.”

Pride is one of the biggest sins that there is.  If you think about it, most of our sins that we commit on a daily basis are based on pride or at least are stemmed from it.  They can almost all be linked back to pride.  That being the case, and pride being a sin, and heaven can contain NO SIN, we would never be allowed into heaven based on anything that we are able to personally do.

All God wants us to do is to put our faith and trust in Him.  Believe in Him and His salvation-work at Mt. Calvary as all that is needed to get into God’s Heaven.

Doing some of those extra things that you do to get into heaven on your own might make you feel really good, but imagine how much better you could feel if you trust Christ first and then all of those good things that you would have done for your salvation, if there is still any virtue in their accomplishment, you can do them for God’s glory rather than your own.

You see, in Matthew 6:16, Jesus is rebuking the Pharisees of the day for doing works out in the open so that they can look more pious than others, but in verses 17 and 18 He goes on and tells them that they should do their “works” in private so that only God can see them.

Because, in verses 19 through 21 He goes on to say:

19 “Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth,
where moth and rust doth corrupt,
and where thieves break through and steal:
20 But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven,
where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt,
and where thieves do not break through nor steal:
21 For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.”
- Matthew 6:19-21

What’s even better than this is in:

John 14:2-3 -
2 “In my Father’s house are many mansions:
if it were not so, I would have told you.
I go to prepare a place for you.
3 And if I go and prepare a place for you,
I will come again, and receive you unto myself;
that where I am, there ye may be also.”

These verses give me great promise and comfort that when my time on earth is finished, I will have a place of extreme comfort to be able to finally rest.  Jesus ascended into Heaven after His resurrection from the dead so that He could prepare a place for me.  If you put all of the verses together, that tells me that after we are saved from our sin’s penalty in Hell, and I start doing things for Him (not for myself and my own glory), I start to lay up treasures in Heaven.

Those verses indicate that there are many mansions in Heaven and that Jesus is going to prepare a place for me and if I lay up treasures in Heaven, as the other verse says, then, when I get there, I should have, as I picture it, a larger mansion with many treasures in it.

Why would anyone in their own right mind want to, knowing this, please ourselves and others around us for our own vain glory when we have so much more waiting for us when we do things the way God wants us to do them?

I mean, seriously, WHY?

Yet, people do it all the time — WE do it all the time!

Yes, I’m guilty too!  It is the “old man”, the “sin nature”, that is in us that naturally wants to receive the pleasure from the gratitude that we get or the trophy (or equivalent) that we would get for doing something especially well and so that others around us can see how GOOD WE are.  We have to fight that sin nature to make sure that God gets the glory for our accomplishments instead of us – after all, He is the one that gave you the ability to do the thing that got you that glory.

I can speak from experience that if you continue to bring glory to yourself and God has other plans for you and you continue to do your own thing to please yourself rather than do the things that would bring God the glory… He can arrange it to where you are no longer able to do those things that bring you pleasure/glory, but make it so that you have no choice but to turn to Him.

Folks, He will continue to allow bad things to come your way so that little by little you are disabled of the things that bring you that pleasure.  It doesn’t matter what it is.  God has control over all!  He can and WILL do what is necessary to get your attention… until… some day, He may finally determine that you are a hopeless case and you will never turn to Him to do His will and He will bring you home.  That “home” may be Heaven, or it may be Hell, but if you don’t listen to Him and His callings, the outcome may not be the way you would really have liked it.

God wants your talents and your time and abilities – let Him have them.  <I’m pleading with you> Turn your life over to His will.  You will have more peace and joy in your life than you ever imagined.

Yes, you will still face adversity but the difference now is that when you do, you will have a friend with you that sticks closer than a brother, that will NEVER leave you or forsake you and will never steer you wrong by giving you bad advise.  He is the Comforter.

You see, all of those things that I listed at the beginning of this article can still be yours but only if you are serving God.  He will NOT grant those things to you because of your own selfish pleasures. He truly knows the best way to live your life – better than you do.  Let Him have control over your life so that He can show you what He has in store for you.  It may not be what you thought you would be doing, but I guarantee you won’t regret it.

Lord, I ask that you get into the heart of those reading this article right now and convince them of all of the great things that You have in store for them – at the very least, You can take away the heartache and hurt that they are feeling right now.  Give them comfort in knowing that You are now in control of the situations in their life.  Please, bring healing to their hearts and lives.  In Jesus’ Name and for His glory I ask these things, Amen.

If you have received the blessing from this article and or this prayer, please leave a comment (or go to my contact page if you wish to stay anonymous) and let me know that you have received a blessing from this.  I would really love to share your joy so that I can give God the glory as well.  As always, if there is anything you need from a spiritual point of view, please feel free to let me know.

God bless you, –Mark

©2013 Mark Davis

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Here’s The Problem With Our Churches Today

I’m reading a lot in different places about how everybody (that is talking) is a “Christian” and how there should not be division among the “Christians” and, in general, churches/ religions/ denominations.

They think that all they have to do is call themselves a “Christian”, when in actuality, there’s a lot more to being a “Christian” than just saying you’re a “Christian” and then doing a bunch of good things.

First, let us look at what it means to be a “Christian”.

The definition of “Christian”: Christ – like or Christ – follower

How do you become a Christian?

If you look at Romans 10:9-10, it says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation”.

And then Ephesians 2:8-9, “For by grace are ye saved through faith, and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God, not of works, lest any man should boast.”

First, to be a Christian, we have to confess with our mouths that we are going to follow Jesus AND we have to believe in our hearts that God actually did raise Jesus from the dead on the third day, and that’s all it says we have to do. Then it says that with the heart man believes unto righteousness (or salvation or becoming a “Christian” by more than just name). Not only do we have to say that we are going to follow Jesus, we have to believe it.

It’s not enough to just believe that we are going to follow Jesus, but we also have to confess that we have, and to open our mouths and tell people and then, and only then will we be saved. (Step by step guide through salvation)

You see, there’s nothing there that says that we have to do anything special other than this, there’s no good works, there is no baptism, there’s no “Hail Mary”s. That’s IT!

Ephesians 2:8-9 backs up that statement by saying that it’s only by God’s grace that we are saved and the reason for that is: it can’t be because of anything WE DO, “and that not of yourselves,” means that there’s nothing we can do that will get us into heaven. Salvation is a gift of God, requiring no works because God doesn’t want any man to be able to brag about what they did to get to heaven.

Joining a church, giving money to a church or any other charity, working in a soup kitchen to help the poor, just generally being a good person, WILL NOT GET YOU TO HEAVEN! Really good people such as: Ghandi, Mother Theresa, Pope John Paul, Buddha, or your next door neighbor can NOT get to heaven by their works!

At that point, and only after all of this is completed, can we call ourselves, “Christian”!

If you have not done that, then you cannot call yourself a “Christian”! If you are relying on other things besides confessing sin and claiming Jesus as your Savior for your salvation, then you MAY NOT BE a Christian.

This is not being judgmental! This is only repeating what God’s Word says. It is stated again many other times through Scripture. What more do we need?

Once this is completed, the hard part begins. Now we have to BE LIKE Jesus!

Matthew 16:24
“Then said Jesus unto his disciples,
If any man will come after me, let him deny himself,
and take up his cross, and follow me.”

Many people figure being like Jesus is just loving people. When in actuality, Jesus tells us to keep His commandments. How many commandments are we supposed to keep? Is it only “love the Lord your God, and love your neighbor”? No, it’s not!

We have to remember that Jesus is God, no question about it. We also have to remember that God gave the 10 Commandments along with many other commandments after that in the Old Testament.

Then we have the much-debated-upon “doctrines”. These doctrines come out of the same Book that tells us about Jesus and explains to us what Jesus wants us to do. The whole Bible is filled with His commandments. If we are not doing EVERYTHING that is written within the pages of the Bible, then we are not doing what God wants us to do.

Now, you want to know why people argue? It’s because of the doctrines! Are these important? ABSOLUTELY!

Some of these doctrines are cut and dried; you don’t have to wonder what they’re telling us to do. Some of them are not so cut and dried. That is where religions and denominations come in. That is why people have to argue. That is why there is dissension in our churches. That is why we have church splits as well.

With all of the “education” that we have out there today, each individual teacher (or pastor/priest) is going to teach their own point of view. In other words, too many of them, what the Bible says at that time means absolutely nothing. The unfortunate thing is that we, as the little people, end up being taught the wrong things… And we believe them.

We are told Acts 17:13, that we are to be like those in Berea, and search the Scriptures daily to see if any of these things are true.

You don’t have to believe me about any of this. You can go on living the way you want to. You can call me all sorts of names. You can do anything, but if you don’t believe the Bible, you’re wrong. I challenge you to prove me wrong. The Bible does not contradict itself.

I may consider myself to be a particular denomination; that denomination does not make me a Christian, nor does it even make me better than anyone else. I’ve chosen the denomination that I belong to, because of what they believe, instead of a non-denominational church because they don’t want to tell you what they believe or they only tell you part of the story.

It’s up to you to figure it out by studying the Bible and to find out if they are right or wrong. If they are wrong and you stay there, you are wrong. In James 4:7, it says, “for to him that knows to do good and doeth it not, to him it is SIN”! [emphasis mine]

I’ll tell you what, the journey really begins after a person becomes a Christian. As a Christian, we are to be discerning of what is right and wrong, and then call it what it is – and then do something about it!

You never saw Jesus, when confronted with something that was wrong, just walk around it. He always confronted it head-on. Think about the temple and the money changers and how He overthrew their tables, and He cast them out of the temple. He actually got mad. And this was Jesus – He got mad! Sometimes we have to, too!

When somebody says something that goes against what you THINK you believe, instead of trying to fight with them, try trying to figure out if what that person said is actually true or not. How do we find out? By going to God’s Word. Because, you see, if it doesn’t go along with what the Bible says, it’s most likely WRONG!

In a perfect world there would not be any argument between different religions or denominations. In fact, there would be no religions or denominations, we would all believe the same things. That IS coming in the near future. It will either be after Jesus comes to take us to be with Him, or it will be when this world sets up a (false) one-world-religion and demands tolerance among all religions.

There is only one way to heaven. If your church does not teach that, it is wrong! And, if you stay there, knowing what I have just said, you will be wrong too and God will hold you accountable for it at the Judgment!

IT’S YOUR CHOICE…

©2013 Mark Davis

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The Christian Pumpkin

Christian Pumpkin


A 10-year-old little girl was asked by another classmate, “what is it like to be a Christian?”. The girl replied, “it’s like being a pumpkin, God picks you from the patch, brings you in, and washes all the dirt off of you. Then He cuts open the top and scoops out all of the yucky stuff. He removes the seeds of doubt, hate, greed, etc., and then He carves you a new smiling face and puts His light inside of you to shine for all the world to see.”

2 Corinthians 5:17
“Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature:
old things are passed away;
behold, all things are become new.”

Just like the carved pumpkin in the illustration, once we become saved by the blood of Jesus Christ, we begin looking at life through His eyes. Those things in our lives that don’t belong there, the Holy Spirit convicts us of them and tells us that we need to change in those areas. We need to be aware of what the Holy Spirit is trying to tell us and then DO what He tells us to do.

©2013 Mark Davis

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Behold Our King!?!

In a society today, where, day by day, it becomes more and more apparent that the world as we know it is almost a thing of the past, and we have wars happening around the middle-east and Africa and various countries’ economies have failed, it makes us wonder, “WHY?”

It really doesn’t matter what part of the world you live, you should still be able to see and/or feel some of it happening around you – and maybe to you (I’m sorry).

Normally I would be happy to tell you that I live in the United States of America, but it is seeming more every day that the good ole USA is in the midst of collapse as well.  There are Major cities whose economies have tanked and they have gone bankrupt – who ever heard of a city going bankrupt anyway?  Never in the history of the United States has that ever occurred and then our federal government is giving them money so that they don’t get wiped off the face of the earth – and this has happened more than once in just the last year or so.

There are earthquakes happening all over the globe at a rate that far surpasses written history and with that volcanic activity has increased as well.  We are hearing of major volcanoes that, if they erupt, will decimate or smother anything within a thousand mile (or so) radius.

We, here in the U.S.A., being a democratic society, have elected a president, senate and law-makers that, in the last 5 years, have quadrupled our national debt; being at this time over $17 Trillion and counting.  The “elected” are required to debate amongst themselves to try to come up with a balanced budget every year – there hasn’t been a balanced budget in the last 5 years.  Now, they have forced a healthcare system upon the people that is going to end up throwing our society into a tailspin and the economy of the U.S.A, will tank as well.  Our national credit rating has been downgraded to the point that we are almost in a position of becoming a second-world country.

What does any of this have to do with a king which I named in the heading?

Nearly (in round numbers – don’t take me to task on this) five thousand years ago the Children of Israel had been ruled by a God that they couldn’t see where all of the other societies around them were ruled by kings that they have chosen.  Leading up to this, the Children of Israel started complaining to Samuel about this and began demanding that they be allowed by God to elect a king.

Side Note:
Does it make any sense to you that they would have to go through a “prophet” of a “God” that had been ruling them for hundreds of years to this point to ask permission to be able to elect a king?  I didn’t think so, but the story goes on…

Finally, the Lord of Israel let them have their way.  Samuel was on the Lord’s side and about as fed up with the people as God.  We pick up the conversation (a bit one-sided) at that point – Samuel speaking:

1 Samuel 12:13 -16:
“Now therefore behold the king whom ye have chosen, and whom ye have desired! and, behold, the LORD hath set a king over you.
14 “If ye will fear the LORD, and serve him, and obey his voice, and not rebel against the commandment of the LORD, then shall both ye and also the king that reigneth over you continue following the LORD your God:
15 “But if ye will not obey the voice of the LORD, but rebel against the commandment of the LORD, then shall the hand of the LORD be against you, as it was against your fathers.
16 “Now therefore stand and see this great thing, which the LORD will do before your eyes.”

Are you watching?  Earlier I told of many things happening around the world.  If those of you reading this are from another country, I pray that you will put this into the context of what is going on around you, but, for the majority of my readers, living in the U.S.A. I will keep it a bit more personal and right in front of your face.  Here are a list of some of the things (I wish I could list them all) that lead to our moral and societal breakdown:

  • United States of America originally founded on Biblical principles giving us freedom OF religion
  • Now people are trying to have freedom FROM religion with a “totally” God-less society
  • Women’s Liberation – burning of the bras
  • Introduction of Rock and Roll – British Invasion
  • Woodstock
  • Equal rights movement – Martin Luther King Jr. and the black/white revolution
  • Moral infidelity reaches the White House (not that it had never been there before but it was made popular through popular media) with John F. Kennedy
  • Vietnam/Korea conflicts that we really didn’t belong in and leading to others around the world – riots rampant at home in the States
  • Charles Manson became the first serial killer “heard around the world” which increased crimes and severity of crimes around the world
  • Gay Liberation – leading to increase of immorality
  • Impeachment of Nixon and Watergate
  • Pornography becomes popular through magazine and video media
  • Increased acceptability of teen and illegitimate pregnancies
  • Major drugs become popular and in some cases legalized/taxed
  • The 1980’s brought in Glamour and Punk Rock producing a heightening level of “acceptance” and “toleration”
  • Beginning of being able to sue in a court of law individuals and companies reducing the sense of responsibility of one’s own personal actions
  • Iran takes US captives and Reagan was instrumental in getting them back, as a result terrorism breaks out and an outbreak of Islam/Muslims and their terrorism
  • Outbreak of AIDS and other major epidemics leading to scientific development of germ warfare
  • Taking the Bible and Prayer out of our public schools
  • Abortions are popularized and legalized – Planned Parenthood (partially funded by US government)
  • Beginning of airline terrorism – heightened security needed around the world
  • Terror hits at World Trade Center (the first hit in the garage) then the Oklahoma City bombing and then the 9/11/2001 Twin Towers World Trade Center/Pentagon and Pennsylvania attacks
  • Divorce becomes readily acceptable among couples also making couples living together without getting married just in case it didn’t work out for them also creating single-parent families more prevalent
  • Personal computers become a norm in most households
  • Advent of the internet and readily available of all types of information, good or bad
  • Lesbian/Gay/Bi-sexual/Transgender lifestyle acceptable and even promoted in our public schools
  • Rampant availability of pornography on the internet
  • Escalation of movie ratings, leading to higher and higher ratings needed, then television ratings needed, then more and more nudity acceptable on TV – glorifying violence and sexuality
  • Sex education in school health classes – now being taught to kindergarten students 5-6 years old (really?)
  • 10 Commandments being removed from our courthouses and oaths not sworn on the Bible
  • The word “God” being removed from our pledge of allegiance and currency

If you’ve been through the Bible much, especially if you’ve read how it all ends, you will realize that this world really is going to end and, in the end, there will be only two kinds of people: those that end up in God’s heaven and those that end up in hell/Lake of Fire.  It is not a fairy tale or a joke.  There have been thousands of Prophecies that had been told of in the Bible and historically they have been fulfilled, all but a few. That’s right, the ones that deal with how things end up – how the world ends.

There is some hope though.  Later in that chapter of first Samuel it gives this condition for us to have God’s favor provided we have accepted His free gift of salvation as indicated in the New Testament (remember that 1 Samuel is part of the Old Testament):

1 Samuel 12:24-25:
24 “Only fear the LORD, and serve him in truth with all your heart: for consider how great things he hath done for you.
25 “But if ye shall still do wickedly, ye shall be consumed, both ye and your king.”

That is pretty cut and dried.  We run the risk of being consumed as a country or personally.

If you haven’t accepted Christ as your personal Savior and accepted His free gift of salvation, I strongly suggest that you do.  If you would like to find out more about it please click here.

©2013 Mark Davis

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