Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Born twice to only die once

What's this about being born twice to only die once? That's anti-everything we logically understand about life and death. That's right, it isn't logical. It's supernatural. It's spiritual. The Christ-like life is spiritual and a one-to-one personal relationship, and a willing to practice faith, obedience, trust, and unselfishness. It defies logic. It takes a steady focus and willingness to make lifestyle choices and then act them out in daily living.The example Christians have is Jesus. Human nature can't be explained as logical. Our human wills can be strong and pretty darn stubborn and Christians have to choose to rise above their selfish nature, or at least I do, to be Christ-like.  It's really not hard once you understand that God, our heavenly Father, is Holy and beyond wonderful and wants the best for His children. When I was young, I finally got a concept instilled in me by my Mom when I got a spanking. She'd tell me the spanking was necessary for my own good and to make sure she got my attention when talking had failed.  We humans tend to have a will that sometimes needs focused and applied attention to the hind end to fully grasp and understand what those who love us are telling us it to protect and keep us from harm and loving us enough by looking out for our safety and well-being. That's called tough love. When I was a youngster, it was sometimes through my hind end that I finally understood it really was dangerous and not in my best interest to play with the stove and fire.  I didn't know I could be badly burned on the stove, but my Mom did. God, in His Holy Word, tells me disobedience brings trouble. Many stories in the Bible show this. So, if I follow His Word, I avoid getting burned.  We humans also tend to want visual, concrete evidence before we place our faith in something we can't see. The beauty of faith is it defies human logic, too.  Oh, God's Word is true and reliable and His Word is what holds all things together. That takes eyes of faith to see that, not just plain eyes. We live from moment to moment, but God lives outside of time and sees from beginning to end.  So, silly, who knows the most? Our eyes can't behold all His brilliance, nor can our eight pound brains in our little skulls, which He created, even begin to imagine how truly awesome He is. Man is too small to contemplate the vast, wondrous magnificence of God. God can not be contained, therefore our two eyes can not see Him.  He is too vast and high and wide. Why? Because God is Spirit. And that's also how we can be born again. First we're born of flesh, as babies to our parents. But inside is our spirit waiting to come alive. When the spirit comes alive, this is called the second birth, or born-again, and occurs when you choose and accept Jesus as your Savior. It's supernatural and defies all human logic. It's designed that way by God. Our spirit is the part God made us in His likeness.  When you ask and invite Jesus  into your heart to be your Savior, that instant, your sins are forgiven and your spirit is quickened and made alive. You're born again. No matter where you are in life, what you've done before, who your parents are, or what your name is, the change takes place on the inside. It is a spiritual thing. A God thing. You may not see fireworks when it happens, or even feel as if anything happened. But if you're sincerely,  it happened. You're spiritually adopted into the family of God and you're sealed in Him forever. Nothing can pluck you from Him once you're born again. No need to worry if you're not perfect, or if you'll ever get your life in order, or if you can't stop smoking, or if you continue being a rotten person. Totally inconsequential  the country you live or the religion of your parents. It's Him whom you'll ultimately have to answer to, not anyone else. It's a personal heart choice to believe and trust and have faith in God and willingly admit you're a sinner and believe upon His Son, Jesus, to save you. And He is faithful and just to do that. He already has, you just have to ask to receive Him into your heart. Then daily it's a personal, intimate relationship to allow Him to work within your heart and take on the characteristics of godliness. If you don't ever believe or trust in Jesus and be born again, there's no hope you'll ever enter heaven. There can be no sin in heaven, so heaven is reserved for those who've asked God's only begotten Son, Jesus, to be their Savior.  It is only through and by Jesus, whom God said He is well pleased.  There is no other way to have your sins forgiven. One way, period. Jesus is it.

You can be born again into the family of God
Photo credit: kakisky from morguefile.com

And finally, God saves the best for last. If you're born twice, you'll only die once. Your spirit comes 'alive' by the Holy Spirit when you accept Jesus into your heart. So your sins get forgiven and you become born again. This supernaturally happens because Jesus died and paid the penalty of sin for all mankind when He died on the Cross. So when you take your last breath and life leaves your fleshly body, your spirit is instantly escorted to heaven. You really won't even experience death because Jesus conquered death for you on the cross. You see, the real you, your spirit, will always be alive and well in the presence of God, residing in heaven, void from sin, in a wonderful glorified body.  However, on the other hand, when you take your last human breath but you've not accepted Jesus as your Savior, your spirit will be sent to hell until the judgment, then ultimately cast in the Lake of Fire forever. This the second death- a spiritual death. It's death because your spirit will be out of the presence of God, that's bad enough,  and in forever darkness with the putrid smell of sulfur, that's awful too, and, Satan and the other fallen angels will be there, that's also nothing to smile about.  Being banished to hell and then the Lake of Fire won't be any party any soul will enjoy for one second. There you, your spirit, will forever be out of the presence of God and that will be like experiencing death forever. Remember, you won't be living the flesh as we now know,  but your existence will be spirit and you will suffer forever in the Lake of Fire. 


God is love and is all about showing His love to us. He does not make anyone do something by force or fear. He gives each of us a free choice to choose Him to your God. Remember, God is Spirit, so His ways do not fall under the understanding of human logic. And, God is all knowing, so His  ways are higher and wiser than man's ways. Thank God for that. The way to know this is to study God's word yourself. Don't trust any one's opinion. That person may tell you erroneous information and your eternal destiny is too important to not know for sure yourself.  You owe it to yourself to read God's Word for yourself. Ask God to open your eyes and give you understanding of His Word. He will reveal His ways which are mysteries to those who don't want to know the truth. I continually grow little by little in understanding the scriptures.  When you seek and ask to know the truth, God is eagerly and patiently waiting to reveal His truth and His way to those who seek Him. Have faith in God and make today the day of your spiritual birth. And welcome into God's family. The best is yet to come for His children.

SUMMARY-                                                                                                                                1. For once, push aside your pride and choose to exercise faith in God.                                    2. Read and study God's Word. Let His Word speak to your spirit. It may not seem logical to be obedient to God's word at first, but do it anyway. It becomes increasingly easier and your faith will deepen.
3. Trust in the ways of God. His ways don't seem logical to mortal man, but trust anyway.
4. Act unselfishly, kindly, humbly, all Christ-like characteristics. This pleases God. And when you please God, he honors you. Just wait and see.
5. Be born again. Yes, it's a spiritual and personal act.  This wonderful gift God has in His grace and mercy of having your spirit made 'alive' is extended to you because He loves you unconditionally and wants you to be with Him in heaven. Jesus died on the Cross as your ransom, saving you from the ultimate spiritual death. Yes, be born twice so you only die once.
6. God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit all are One, and Holy, and possess distinct characteristics, but are One. God in His infinite wisdom, love, grace and mercy has your back. There is one thing He will not do for you, and that's make the decision for you to choose Him.                                                                                                                                           
Here's a site with solid Christian programming on the internet and radio.
Here's a song to listen to 'The Plan of Salvation'




6 steps to become spiritually born again and a prayer you can pray. Visit my older posts on this blog.

Until next time, continue skipping along in faith on the straight & narrow path toward the Son.

scripture references- The entire Book of Matthew; Mark 1:11,10:45; John 1:1; 3:1-10; 4:24, 5:22; 1Peter 1:23; 2 Peter 2:4; Revelation 20:14-15

Friday, January 7, 2011

Not stepping on toes about homosexuality

Out of the closet and living a homosexual lifestyle, is it right or wrong? I've wondered about this, and when I want truthful answers, I go to the manual for living- The Bible.  God's Word does have something to say concerning homosexuality.  I find it amazing that this choice of sexual orientation was even addressed in the Bible. Apparently, it must be important for it to be there in multiple scripture references.  I am not judging, that's not my place to do so.  I like what some have written on homosexuality on several sites citing several Bible scripture. God's Word states it's a sin, homosexuals will not inherit the kingdom of God, and God sees homosexuality as an abomination. That's pretty strong dislike, don't you think? God wants no one to perish, and His Word plainly states homosexuality is a sin and an abomination, then there's some misunderstanding of His Word. He can't have created man to naturally be an abomination if it's a sin, and, He wants no soul to perish. It can't be both ways.

Homosexual & gay pride, colorful, but God's Word says 'not'
Photo credit: chattiekathie from morguefile.com

As a Christian, God says we are to love people, but not the sin. All I know is I want to inherit all that God has in store for me, His child, in heaven. I do try to follow as best I can His Word for living. I am not, nor ever will be perfect while in this body, but I do want and strive to please God with my life, the choices I make, and be a blessing to others. I don't wish anyone to be an abomination to God. He is our creator and He is 'The Source' of all good things. Wouldn't that get someone thinking about pleasing Him rather than being an abomination to Him?  God lovingly allows us to make our decisions and own personal choices. He given that to us, His creation, l and will not violate our will.  However, there are consequences to our choices.  His law can't be violated without facing consequences.  Some consequences come early, some come later, but consequences will come. There's no escape from the consequences of sin.  If someone lovingly revealed to me that I was doing something which was going to give me dreadful, eternal consequences, I'd seriously and honestly reconsider what I was doing. Call me old-fashion, but I think about consequences.

Not stepping on any toes

Photo credit: bluekdesign from morguefile.com

Could it be some people don't know what's God position on homosexuality? God is so very patient and loving and doesn't want a single soul to perish into the Lake of Fire. That's why we have His Word to guide us and His Son to save us from the consequences of sin.  There is always help, but again, it's your choice to want and seek it.

 Living in our fleshly dwelling is but for a little while. Our choices are personal, and the consequences of those choices will be owned personally, and eternally.  God's Word endures forever. (Isaiah 40:8 and 1 Peter 1:24-25)

Additional thoughts-    Back in 2009, when Carrie Prejean, Miss California, answered her final question during the Miss USA pageant, there was outrage and scorn that her answer didn't please those who live a different lifestyle. Her upbringing and belief is not homosexuality, and she has every right to say that. Her voicing her belief shouldn't be quenched even if some don't agree with it. Why is there a double standard?  Communicating what you know to believe is still a rightful freedom in this country without having to be blackballed because it conflicts with others thoughts and beliefs.  Those who want to live a homosexual lifestyle and interject their beliefs on others are making the most noise- they don't want anyone to dispute in any way their choice of lifestyle.  I say Miss Prejean answered her question,'Should all states legalize same sex marriages?' with style and grace in front of an audience of millions looking on, and knowing her answer would probably cost her the Miss USA crown.  I commend her and wish I could personally let her know I'm proud she stood firm to her faith, her parents, herself, her God, and answered truthfully as she knew, even thought her answer was going to displease some. She had guts and didn't falter. Her answer rocked the world. Her stance for being true and not caving and giving an answer so she could win a pageant is commendable no matter what your sexual orientation choice is. I wonder how the other contestants would've answered such a critical and personal question that night? I wonder how I would've answered?

 When I was growing up when I wanted to do something just because my friends were all doing it, my Mom used to tell me "if everyone jumped off a cliff, it doesn't mean you have to."  We all may have siblings, friends, neighbors, even co-workers who've made it their choice to live a homosexual lifestyle. This is a free country. Freedom to choose is a person's right. But, not everyone desires or agrees or wants the homosexual lifestyle for themselves. They have a right to their choice and are free to voice their choice as well.

But the Good News is still the same. God loves all, not the sin. Anyone seeking the kingdom of God is welcome no matter their lifestyle or sin. Jesus died for all sins. I was wrong in my  thinking that I first had to get my life in order and straightened up before I could become a child of God and accept Jesus as my savior. If that was the case, I'd still be right were I was. There's no way a human can be perfect.  We are all sinners. Our sins are forgiven of God only through what Jesus did on the cross.  There are some habits and sins too strong to overcome and only by the strength of the Holy Spirit can some overcome these things that you want to break away from. It's not too late, and the Good News to all is 'Come just as you are, faults, sins and all, to the Lord. Invite Him into your heart and allow the Holy Spirit to work within you and your spirit, and help you have victory in making changes you can't do alone. The flesh is weak, but your spirit with the help of the Holy Spirit can be mighty. I like the information in the following link-especially the questions regarding homosexuality and being gay are answered at the end.

Bible scripture references- in the Old Testament- Leviticus Chapters 18:22 and  20:13.
New Testament references- Mark 7:20-23; Luke 2:10; Luke 8:10; 1Corinthians 6:9-11; Romans 1:26-27; 1John, Chapter 4

Final thoughts- The ultimate last word happens to be God's alone.




Keeping my face, heart and soul toward the Son.