Ok this is serious Bible study stuff…
Growing up in Church, i learned much about God, Jesus Christ, heaven and hell, etc. But i must say that as much as i learned good things, i also learned some unclear and even sometimes wrong things taught to me by teachers who either did not know the answers, or did not think to clarify certain VERY important details of the gospel and my salvation.
In my few years of seeking after God and desperately praying not to be cast away, …thus doing my possible best to love and serve God, (albeit miserably), God in His infinite mercy and love chose to give me the privilege of learning some truths that would clarify some of my misconceptions. Misconceptions I had about Him, His Word, Christ’s sacrifice on the cross, and so much more. Things that either made me wrongly terrified of God, distrustful of Him, or blatantly unappreciative of His sacrifice for me because i knew not the gravity of His work, its meaning, and the benefits associated with it. (Philippians 3:10.)
God has used people such as Chuck Missler (ALL his ingenious verse by verse bible studies and seminars), Dr. Myles Munroe, (His life, legacy & rhema teachings about Kingdom), Tim Lahaye (Charting The End Times), Zac Poonen (New versus old covenant), Perry Stone (messianic teaching), and others to open my mind to revelation and understanding; revelation to the potential of a life of faithfulness and even deeper worship with understanding; all in a beautiful and complicated simplicity that have given me the new level of peace, joy, confidence, humility, sincerity, passion and total abandon in serving God that i wish you can grasp as well today. (Colossians 1:26-29)
The Hope of glory which cannot be taken away and for which i would give up everything if asked to. Please NOTE: i am not saying these people are perfect or that their theology and understanding of the Bible is flawless. I am saying however, that there are certain truths these ones have grasped which are not being disseminated as well as they should be to many in the body of Christ.
I especially give Chuck Missler and Tim Lahaye respective credit in this entire post for their explanations of these truths to me in a way i could understand and am now replicating in this form for my own audience. (Especially certain bible verses and scripture references along with my study.) I learned from those men and do not claim these revelations as my own. Nevertheless, having learned from them, I have absorbed certain truths which have resounded in my Spirit and now reiterate them in my own way for those who are able to hear me; and understand it from my perspective.
By the way, i’ll be posting links to these people’s pages beneath this post and i highly encourage you to study…study to show yourself approved; a workman who needs not be ashamed; and rightly dividing the word of truth. (2 Timothy 2:15) Much like the Bereans who searched the scriptures and were noble for it. They didn’t just take what they were told but STUDIED! (Acts 17:11) Because honestly, (and respectfully), if you think the messages you hear on the pulpit of your church Sunday to Sunday are the extent of revelation God has for you, you are insulting the very ability of God because you are relegating who He is, what He does, has done, or can do, to the intelligence of whatever speaker you are consistently listening to once or twice a week, without applying yourself to learning and searching for the deeper things of God which will add to your faith. The knowledge is not hidden from you. God wants to be found and wants to reveal His truths. But only if you create a demand with your yearning for more understanding of Him. (Jeremiah 33:3; James 4:8).
The deep things should be for all God’s children so we build strong warrior christians who can boldly defend their faith and not simply hyped up Christians who are deflated without the true content and power of God’s Word revealed to their inner man. This is some of the meat of God’s word we should challenge ourselves to eat and be edified by, and yet milk is preferred. There are deeper things… There is more to be understood. I believe that. I know I need more. And the only way to know it is when i experience it. It is different. There is Kingdom! There is power! There is a tabernacle of worship! There is spiritual warfare! There is the gospel! God already said for us to seek first His Kingdom and all other things would be added but perhaps at times, we’ve kind of gone after the latter first. (Mathew 6:33) The knowledge of Truth is something the devil fights incessantly to prevent us from knowing as humans; especially for the believer. He wants to continue leaving certain uncertainties uncleared between you and God knowing fully it will hamper your relationship of trust with God! (Ephesians 5:13-15)
While the world is manufacturing Kanye Wests who make posters of themselves as Yeezus with upside down crosses, Lady Gagas put up apocalyptic and satanic images in their videos as entertainment, Jay-Zs call themselves J-Hovas, Christian practices and the bible are being banned from public institutions while anti-christian views or other religions are allowed their literature to become required reading, etc…our response as the body of Christ cannot be more of the same old, same old; we can’t continue teaching the basics and avoid teaching about the end of the age, rapture, the millennial reign of Christ on the earth coming, the desecration that will occur in Jerusalem’s temple, the importance of Israel in prophecy, the antichrist, heaven, hell, judgement, etc and many in our generation are not knowledgeable of the true stories enough to discern when they are being manipulated by the enemy in contemporary entertainment or discourse. Perhaps we should stop being entertained for a moment and be challenged by the harder things of the Word. I speak of myself as well.
I love Dr. Myles whose goal was not to build followers but leaders. He sought to imbue them with all the revelation and knowledge he had so they could discover their own purpose, the power the truth would bring out of them, and then let them loose on the world to impact and effect it the same way he had… Much like Christ did. Because they had come to know what he knew; those deep, powerful, liberating, & energizing things have since been impacting the world around him and those touched by him. Imagine our children growing up with deep spiritual truths…imagine churches filled with people who don’t need the hoopla to stay… But having known what the disciples knew that made them pursue after Christ so much, they don’t have to be coerced to give, to promote the gospel, or to support kingdom purpose. They’ll do it naturally because the power of legitimate truth compels them!
The entrance of the Word on a lot of these subjects both to young and old, theological scholar and newborn christian, will give light and understanding to our path as a whole (Psalm 119:130) No wonder those who truly grasped the message of the gospel could not hold it in. They were compelled by the joy and liberty they had seen and experienced to share it to the point of losing their lives, if necessary. (2 Corinthians 5:14-21).
Chuck Missler asks how much time does God dedicate in His Word to a certain subject? Even about creation, one of the most amazing things of our world, He only dedicates a few chapters. But to the issue of redemption & His ultimate plan at the end, He dedicated practically His whole Word! Also what did it cost Him? Creation for example only cost God a few days and His breath. But the redemption plan cost the Life of His Divine Son!!! (John 3:16)
Please read carefully, read for understanding, challenge your own concepts or misconceptions, and then go back to the source, the Word, and reassess your faith. You must not think for one second that what you know now is all there is to know. I mean we MUST be missing a bunch of knowledge, revelation and understanding Jesus Christ had because as our example here on earth, He did incredible things. He had NO fear. He knew and trusted the Father fully, he worked miracles and His faith was impeccable! And He said we should be the same way and even do greater things. But most times, we don’t. Why? I think because we are missing some things from what He has revealed and need to know more of what Christ wanted us to know in order to become like Him in word and deed.
Ok, my friend, PLEASE get your bible; you’ll need it and I want you actively studying along and checking the bible references.
A few of the questions God has answered personally about my eternal security, (something of which i was formerly unsure) are as follows:
(1.) Can i be sure of my eternal salvation and security by Christ’s sacrifice on the cross? Will i go to heaven? What IS salvation?
Salvation is a 3 step process:
I can’t just say i’m saved. What does that mean on a deeper level? Does salvation cover my past, present and future? Or should i live in constant fear of messing up in anger for example before an unexpected death and ending up in hell when i have believed in Jesus Christ to be saved? (Cos i’ve heard this one before)
Past – Justification – from the penalty of sin (redemption and forgiveness when i gave my life to Jesus Christ.) Romans 5:1-11
Present – Sanctification – from the power of sin (I die daily to the flesh, to sin, to carnal evils & seek to be Christlike in daily righteous living.) Even though i sometimes fail, i get back up again and do better.
Future – Glorification – from the presence of sin. When we leave this earthly realm and enter into eternity to live in the presence of God unhindered forevermore!
That is the power and purpose of Christ’s sacrifice on the cross.
I am sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise (Ephesians 1:13-18; 2 Corinthians 1:21-22) and that is why i can long to say “Come Lord Jesus!” I can’t mess up His work of salvation even if I try! God loves me as much as He loves Jesus Christ now! (John 17:23)
My salvation is SURE (eternal security) because it does not depend on me but on Christ alone that no one may boast. The Lord Jesus Christ’s sacrifice on the cross is INDEED “finished.” There is nothing to add to or take away from the finished work of Christ who was slain from before the foundation of the world! Salvation is truly guaranteed because God has taken care of my past, present AND future. Anything i can do, my righteousness, etc is truly like filthy rags and quite irrelevant on the topic of salvation because God the Father, Jesus Christ the Son, and the Holy Spirit have made it their singular responsibility to save my wretched soul and pay ALL of the price for my salvation. Not a part payment, not SOME that i have to add to, but COMPLETELY! Thank you Jesus! Knowing this is the gospel! THIS is what if everyone knew, would and should give them irrevocable joy and confidence in GOD… in Jesus Christ… In the cross! 😀 Not that i should take it for granted or live recklessly, but that I may have the peace that passes all understanding. (Philippians 4:7).
My salvation depends on God when i relinquish that impossible-for-myself-responsibility to Him Jesus Christ. That is the beautiful solution God has come up with to satisfy both His judgement and mercy. Somebody’s got to pay the price for their failures because He is a righteous judge but He wants to have mercy because He’s a loving Father. So He resolves it by taking on the punishment for those who will…thus executing punishment and mercy all at the same time!! Ingenius!!! 😀 🙂
So what is my part? How come i’ve been told i need to serve God with fear and trembling and run the race faithfully so i don’t lose my crown? (1 Corinthians 9:24-27) If God has done it all, why should i bother doing anything else? (Hebrews 12:1-4)
Well, that’s because…
My rewards, crowns, inheritance, however, depend on me! My works, my character, my obedience. They all garner rewards, standing with God to reign and to inherit His kingdom WITH Christ. Gold, silver, precious stones; versus wood, hay, stubble.
1 Corinthians 3:9-15
It is one thing to inhabit a hotel indefinitely due to the benevolence of the owner. It is quite another to be the child of the owner and actually own and inherit the hotel becoming an owner and shareholder!
My salvation, a.k.a my right to habitation in heaven (staying in the hotel indefinitely) is due to the benevolent sacrifice of Christ on the cross; that is my sure salvation. Me becoming a king as well as a priest however in heaven and actually INHERITING along with Christ is a totally different story; that’s where my character and works come in… Have i proven to be a true lover of God with character? And not just the last minute, or irreverent saved Christian who came crawling for forgiveness while exercising my own will throughout my life and lacking the integrity resume for even an employer to put me in a position of leadership? Or for a person to entrust their life into my hands as a spouse because of my fidelity issues?
See this is good to understand and explains how that cheating loser you once knew or that murderer who gives his life to Christ at the last minute in jail can end up in Heaven. It is as a result of Christ’s FINISHED work on Calvary. All one has to do to be saved is accept Jesus as your Lord and savior, repent of your sins and receive the free gift of salvation. But for the hard workers however, who have devoted their lives to the service of Christ and truly loved Him, know that your years of true service and love, though you are equal to the others in that you’ll all make heaven, sets you apart in your own glory and reward from the master Jesus Christ the Lord. You gain the CROWN. The crown is not for free salvation but committed service to Christ Jesus; and that is what can be lost justifiably for under-par service in your life.
There is a price for the anointing! There is a price YOU need to pay in your daily life to make yourself inhabitable for the tangible presence of God Himself and His Spirit here on earth and to inherit heaven.
Afterall, a lot of people live in America or even have American citizenship. But we are quite aware that someone who lives in the poor parts of Compton may not necessarily be enjoying the same privileges someone in the largest mansion in Hollywood is. Why? Access. Privilege. Inheritances; wealth. I hope you’re understanding this.
So no, as the apostle Paul said, i cannot continue in sin that grace may abound. (Romans 6:1- ) It is my responsibility to get better and seek after Christ, even though the actual accomplishment of bringing about the changes in me will come by His Spirit. But is entering heaven a guarantee? Yes, if I have accepted Jesus Christ and His finished work for me by faith.
(2.) Can my name be removed from the book of life? What books are there?
When you read the Word of God carefully, you discover that:
There are 3 books in judgement to be assessed;
A – (God’s) Book of life: (Revelation 20:15) lists the names of every created person God made. Names can be blotted out for sin. (Exodus 32:33)
B – The Lamb’s book of life: (Revelation 21:27) lists the names of all those who have accepted Jesus Christ. Names Will NOT be blotted out. (Revelation 3:5)
C – the books of the works of men: lists every deed each man has ever done. (Revelation 20:12-13)
Yes, it is possible for one’s name to be blotted out from the (Father’s) book of life because of sin and rebellion against God. But for those who have accepted the Lord Jesus Christ as their Lord and savior, their names are written in the Lamb (Son’s) book of life for salvation and WON’T be removed short of them asking him to remove it themselves or openly denying and recanting their faith in Jesus Christ. But not for falling short or messing up here and there unintentionally. For now we are under grace and not the law since Christ has accomplished the old covenant, rendered it obsolete, and become our new covenant before God. (Hebrews 8:6-13) Christ has said those given to Him, He will not lose and will not be removed from His Father’s hands. (John 6:37-39). Your salvation when you give it to Jesus, becomes His sole responsibility with the Trinity, not based on your merit any longer so you are His.
Now if you have accepted the Lord Jesus Christ truly as your Lord and savior, you DON’T have to worry about the books with all your deeds written in them. Why? Because when it comes time for all your deeds to be accounted for publicly and all your dirty little secrets and sins exposed before all to see, hear, experience, and witness, Jesus Christ Himself shows up for you… His flawless self is your advocate and stand-in for eternity with nothing more to say about you other than that you are faultless and need not even go through that judicial process at all since He’s borne the weight, paid the debt, and carried the consequences of whatever would have been seen for eternity! (1 John 2:1).
(3.) Will I be judged and have to be terrified of that judgement day? How many judgements are there and for whom, when?
– Of what i have come to understand, (and i’m certain there is much more yet for me to learn and rejoice over eternally), the 2 judgements i know exist are the Judgement Seat (Bema) seat of Christ and then the great White Throne Judgement.
(1 Corinthians 3:9-15)
(2 Corinthians 5:10)
The judgement at the Bema seat of Christ is the one you WANT to be a part of people. THAT one is the one that occurs after the “rapture” of believers (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18; John 14:1-3) prior to the marriage supper of the lamb. (Revelation 19:7-9) It occurs while the tribulation occurs on earth and is not a judgement of hell and heaven but a judgment for believers alone before Christ. (1 Thessalonians 5:9) Taken away forever from the power of sin, It is here that each believer, in other words, those who have received Christ, whose names are written in the lamb’s book of life and who WILL enter heaven, receive the rewards for their lives. The character, works, faithfulness, etc that we spoke of earlier… That’s where believers will find out if they’ll receive the Compton treatment (so to speak) in heaven, or the Hollywood royalty treatment and rule and reign, inherit and have more merit with Christ Jesus. This where those who had the talents and used them wisely will be joyful. This is where those who chose to be faithful, win souls, serve God diligently, hold on to their morals etc in God will receive their due rewards over the Sunday Sunday professors of Christianity who simply received Christ but did not utilize their lives to be of great value to Him (so to speak) by keeping His commands, etc.
Now the second judgement is the great white throne judgement which occurs after the Bema Seat judgement has occurred for believers. This one is for everyone else. Those who did not accept Christ as Lord. Those who were not raised from the dead by Jesus Christ at the rapture. (Revelation 20:5 and 20:11-15) This is where the other 2 books come in: the book of life and the books written of the works of men. This is where everyone else is now judged based on their works written in the books and the fact that they are not written in the lamb’s book of life. This, you do NOT want to be a part of…because works will not suffice. (Ephesians 2:8-9)
1 Corinthians 11:32
4. Should i be afraid of death? What is the second death?
When you are in Christ, death, as in being separated from your body here on earth is actually going to sleep. You need not be afraid if you are in Christ because what awaits you thereafter is 1. A new incorruptible, perfected and glorious body, 2. Getting to see and be with Christ Jesus in peace and glory forever, 3. the Bema seat judgement for rewards, and life eternal… That earthly death is merely transformation into the glorious beautiful life that supersedes this fallen one we currently live in.
Now if someone is NOT in Christ, then there should be fear for death. Not only the first one of being separated from their earthly body and folks here on earth, but also the second death of going away from God and all things Godly and beautiful into what we know as hell; a place basically the definition of separation from God who is the originator and author of all things good.
(5.) What is the old covenant versus the new covenant and how have my obligations to the Mosaic law of the old testament differ now in the new testament through Christ’s coming?
Honestly, this one is just so heavy i’m not sure I can adequately cover it here cos i’m overwhelmed; perhaps another post on my blog or something later; in the meantime, i’ll leave you with this message by Zac Poonen which explains it very very well. http://youtu.be/rVJQi6qCaP8
Also a direct quote coming from Tim Lahaye’s Charting The End Times and some other scriptures before I explain further. Page 95.
2 Corinthians 3:4-6
Overall, know this, salvation is certain in Christ alone. (Acts 4:12)
Here are other links you’ll find helpful.
Dr. Myles Munroe
For some beautiful worship