Good day my friend. I have an important question for you.
What have you done to insure your name’s in the lambs book of life?
I know, a bit of a heavy question but none the less a very important one.
Some of you might say, ‘no one knows what will happen when they die.’
Others might say, ‘this is just another religious blog.’ and to that I’d say, No.
This is not about religion, it’s about truth, and knowing where you will spend eternity and what you can do to be sure of your eternal destination.
I’M A GOOD PERSON WHO DOES GOOD DEEDS
It’s amazing to see the outpouring of compassion, good deeds, finances and overall generosity that’s been taking place since the United States has been hit by devastating storm after devastating storm. People are opening up their wallets and getting involved with rescue efforts, clean up, and even the rebuilding of all the areas that have been ravaged by the recent fires and hurricanes. However, even with all the ‘good’ deeds that are occurring is that enough to secure our eternal destination?
While good deeds are noble, you can’t earn your way into heaven or into God’s presence.
Isaiah 64:6 says:
“All of us have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags.”
In Pslam 14:1-3 it reads: “The fool says in his heart, ‘There is no God.’ They are corrupt, they do abominable deeds; there is none who does good. The Lord looks down from heaven on the children of man, to see if there are any who understand, who seek after God. They have all turned aside; together they have become corrupt; there is none who does good, not even one.”
Good deeds will not secure our eternal destination, nor insure our names are in the lambs book of life.
BUT I DO BELIEVE
The most quoted scripture is possibly the most misunderstood.
John 3:16 reads; “For God so loved the world that He gave His only Son and whoever believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life.”
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard people say, “but I believe in Jesus, isn’t that enough?”
Contrary to popular thought, the Greek word for believe that is used in this verse means far more than to simply “accept something as true”, which is the definition of believe.
In this scripture the Greek word that is used for believe is ‘pisteuo’ which actually means to commit your trust/faith in someone.
The definition of commit means to be dedicated.
The definition of dedicated is: “having single-minded loyalty or integrity.”
So, the actual meaning of John 3:16 is, “for God so loved the world that He gave His only Son, that whoever will be loyal and single-minded in their devotion to Him will not perish but have eternal life.”
Simply believing is not enough to secure your name in the lambs book of life. You must be fully loyal and committed to the Son of God.
I’VE PRAYED A PRAYER ISN’T THAT ENOUGH?
It breaks my heart to think about all the people who believe that because they were baptized as a baby, follow the pope, or prayed a one time prayer but never committed themselves to the Messiah believe that one day they will be with God in eternity.
Prayer and baptism are both important aspects of a loyal disciples life, but when done improperly they’re of no use in placing us within our eternal home.
One bible verse that has always touched my heart, even from a young boy is Matthew 7:21-23 where Yeshua/Jesus says: “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’
How is it that people who did miracles in the Messiah’s name are told “I never knew you. Away from me you evildoers.”?
To ensure our name is in the lambs book of life requires more than a one time prayer. More than being baptized as a baby, and much more than going to church on Sunday’s and listening to the religious words from the pope. Are you ready to be shown the path?
IT BEGINS WITH REPENTANCE
Messiah Yeshua began his ministry in the gospels of Matthew and Mark by proclaiming “Repent”!
What is repentance?
Repent means to have a change of mind and to turn around or away from the current path we are on.
So, to repent of our sins is to chose not to continue doing what is separating us from God and instead chose to obey His word which includes the teachings of His Son, Yeshua/Jesus. We turn from our way and turn to His.
Repentance is a choice. It’s a decision that’s made when our hearts are fully convinced that we are sinners, rebels against God’s law and word, and there is nothing we can do to earn God’s love and acceptance.
Once we acknowledge how pure/holy and loving God is compared to how far we fall short of the standard that’s required just to enter His presence, and we no longer want to continue on our own path but chose to follow the Messiah, then we can be assured that we have repented and have begun our walk toward our heavenly home. Repentance is the first step toward knowing our names are in the lambs book of life.
NO MORE DOING ME
A phrase I hear all too often, even among some believers is, “I gotta do me”. Meaning, “I have to make me happy. I have to please myself. I have to fulfill my dreams and desires”.
Let me be very clear, you can not be a follower of the Messiah and continue doing you.
Yeshua/Jesus taught very clearly; “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me.” Matthew 9:23
Paul wrote: “Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires” Galatians 5:24. Again Paul wrote, “but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live.” Romans 8.13
You cannot be a follower of the Messiah and continue looking at porn. You cannot be a follower of the Messiah and continually tell lies or have sex outside of marriage. You cannot be a follower of Yeshua/Jesus and willfully choose to disobey His teachings and live in sin, which is rebellion against Him.
In the end it’s not about pleasing ourselves, it’s about pleasing the One who loves us enough that He died for us. It’s about dying to our desires and choosing to satisfy Him alone.
NOT BY WORKS
As I said earlier, we cannot do enough good deeds to earn our way into God’s presence. In the book of Ephesians Paul writes; “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God – not by works, so that no one can boast. For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” Ephesians 2:8-10.
Our salvation is a gift of God. Our faith is a gift from God. It’s provided by God’s grace. Apart from God’s grace we are lost, we have nothing and we are nothing.
Messiah Yeshua said in John 3: “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.”…”Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.”
Repentance is brought on by Godly sorrow. Knowing in our hearts that we have sinned/rebelled against God and that we are deserving of His wrath. We cry out for forgiveness and choose to turn from our sinful ways toward Him. We choose to ask Yeshua/Jesus to forgive us of our sins and send His spirit into our hearts. We receive His death, burial, and resurrection as the atonement for our sins and we trust in His work and not our own. Then and only then can we know our names are in the lambs book of life.
GOD’S STARTING POINT
The best place for us to begin is with God’s word.
In John it reads, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.”
God is holy, meaning He is without imperfection. He is perfect, righteous and pure in all His judgments and works. He intended for us to be with Him for all eternity. We are created in His image, meaning we are first spiritual beings that will inherit an eternal destiny.
We will either be allowed into His presence or we will not.
Our damnation came through our choice to be our own god. Our rebellion against our loving Father is what has created the divide between us and Him. We, as sinful creatures, can not stand before holy God on our own merits, on our own works.
That’s why God had to send His only Son Yeshua/Jesus to take the punishment we deserved. God’s standard is perfection, and anything less is deserving of death.
Yeshua/Jesus, God’s Son. 100 percent God and 100 percent man was born of a virgin. Lived and taught God’s word for thirty three years. He was crucified, dead and buried. He arose on the third day, and appeared to His disciples along with other witnesses. Then He ascended to heaven where He sits until the Father tells Him it’s time to return.
In order for us to begin this journey we must repent of our sins as was discussed earlier. The next step is we must receive the gift of salvation that Yeshua/Jesus provides through His life, death, burial and resurrection.
Eternal life is a gift from God and it was given at the expense of His only Son’s life. It wasn’t free for God and it wasn’t free to Yeshua/Jesus. And it comes at the cost that we must daily die to our own desires and chose to follow Yeshua by His Spirit in all we do and all we say.
LIVING IT OUT
I’m writing this today because I have a burden for the lost and those who have been led astray by either hyper faith teachings or hyper works teachings. Both of which are damaging spiritually.
We are saved by grace through faith. And yes we were created for good works, however unless the love of the Messiah is at the center of the motivation for all we do then all those works are dead. They mean absolutely nothing. Yes, we will be blessed because God’s word is true. If we bless others we will be blessed, however that doesn’t determine where we will spend eternity.
Once we have repented and given our lives to the Lord and are following Him, He will speak to us and lead us to begin doing the works He has created for us to do. Some of which are taking care of the elderly and widows. Looking after the orphans and homeless. Feeding those in need and caring for all through love. The same unconditional love He has for each of us will begin to fill our hearts and our motivation will no longer be to make ourselves feel better, or to have some kind of bragging rights, but rather for others to know the Father loves them and revealed this love through His Son and it’s because of this revelation that we are here today assisting those in need.
Living a life devoted to the Messiah is about death to self.
It’s a daily decision.
We must decide, are we going to choose to cuss and use profanity or are we going to choose our words more carefully so that the words we use are a blessing to all who hear them?
Are we going to fill our minds with porn or violent images or are we going to choose to fill our minds with God’s word so we may be a blessing to others?
Living a life devoted to the Messiah is about daily going to Him in prayer. Asking Him to forgive us of our shortcomings and the sins that we allow to filter into our lives. It’s about asking Him to fill us with His Spirit that we may be victorious daily over sins many temptations. It’s about listening to His Holy Spirit and being led to do the works He intends for us to do. It’s about reading His word daily to cleans our minds from the distractions of this world so we may hear Him more clearly. And yes, once we have chosen to follow Him with all our hearts we are to be baptized in the full knowledge that we are dying to ourselves so that we may one day arise from the dead and be with Him for all eternity.
Yeshua/Jesus taught that there are two paths. One leads to eternal life and one leads to eternal death which is separation from the Father.
I’ve seen both paths and have walked both and can tell you that the path of repentance is the much better path.
The path following the Messiah, while it’s not a piece of cake, is the true path to life, peace and joy.
My prayer is that any of you that have been fed misinformation will read this and come to understand the way to God. Yeshua/Jesus taught us plainly what we must do, now it’s up to us to choose and then follow Him each and every day.
If you have questions, please reach out and I’ll do my best to answer your questions.
“May the Lord bless you and take good care of you. May the Lord smile on you and be gracious to you. May the Lord look on you with favor and give you peace.”