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Commit Yourself to Living a Joy Filled Life Based in Truth
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Not many people realize that loving God is as simple as living a moral life based on His Word.

In Matthew 19:16, Jesus was asked what must be done to inherit eternal life. His answer: “If you want to enter into life, keep the commandments.”

John 6:28, "Then they said to him, "What must we do to perform the works of God?" Jesus answered them,
"This is the work of God, that you believe in him whom he has sent."
The way you live your life is your worship.
As Christians we are all part of the body of Christ regardless of what faith based traditions you keep.
Articles / Blog Posts
icon-1Will You Enjoy Heaven?
For those who enjoyed the BLAZE ARTICLE on heaven as good as it is I think they could have expounded upon their message. For example, I think they could have explained more clearly that nobody after death is denied the loves and joys they have developed in this life. The Bible in reference to heaven speaks of different jobs of higher and lower esteem; it speaks of heaven's government structure and of houses and cities and even says that it is” beyond what we could ask for or even think of.” In other words, you definitely will want to live there and experience its joys and our life here is used in developing our loves in preparation of an eternal life, that will be much like the ones we are living now, but lived in the most amazing environment we can possibly imagine. As the article states the question we all need to ask is where will our loves take us after death and what type of life do we need to live to enter heavenly societies as described by God. The Bible is actually fairly clear on this and says if we love God with all of our heart and love our neighbor as ourselves we will be saved and all other commandments are covered by doing this.

So does loving God just mean acknowledging Christ as God? Does this alone save us? Let’s see what Christ taught. 2 Cor 7:14 says, “when my people humble themselves—the ones who are called by my name—and pray, seek me, and turn away from their evil practices, I myself will listen from heaven, I will pardon their sins,...” John 14:23 says Jesus answered him, "Those who love me will do what I say. My Father will love them, and we will go to them and make our home with them.” So as we can see above he says people who believe Christ is God their Savior i.e. “the ones who are called by my name” must turn away from their evil practices before he will pardon their sins. In addition, it says in order to love God you must “ do what I say” not just believe it is the right thing to do. Belief without the action of doing what is taught is to deny Christ and is called being unrighteous. This is why James 2:20 says “Do you want proof, you foolish person, that faith without actions is worthless?” 1 Cor 6:9 “Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor adulterers, nor prostitutes, nor those who practise homosexuality... shall be saved. “ Mat 10:33 “But whoever denies me before others, I will disown before my Father in heaven.” To deny is to dismiss. How do you dismiss Christ before others? You do what he says you shouldn’t. You openly dismiss his values and teachings in the example you set in your daily life. But the good news is that the Bible says some of you WERE all of the above but because of the power of the Lord you turned from these ways of life and are now brothers in Christ. Luke 8:21; Matt 12:48-49 and Mark 3:33-35 all state “Jesus stretched forth his hands toward his disciples and said, My mother and my brothers, are those who hear the Word of God and do it.” James 1:12 says "Blessed are those who endure when they are tested. When they pass the test, they will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him." Again loving him is living a life according to his commandments and teachings.

2 Peter 2:18 warned of Churches that would rise up under false teachings that would promise freedom to sin i.e. that faith was all you needed. “With lofty but empty words, they appeal to the sensual passions of the flesh and entice the ones who are just escaping from those who live in error. They promise them freedom, while they themselves are slaves to corruption. For a man is a slave to whatever has overcome him. If indeed they have escaped the corruption of the world through their knowledge of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, only to be entangled and overcome by it again, their final condition is worse than it was at first.” The condition is worse because they no longer seek to overcome sin as they are taught that eternal life is a gift for faith through grace alone. But biblical teaching rejects this lie because even the demons in hell believe in God: James 2:19 “You say you have faith, for you believe that there is one God. Good for you! Even the demons believe this, and they tremble in terror.”

So how have so many Minister's been deceived to preach that "faith alone saves" when the passages of the Bible are so clear: Matt 16:27 "The Son of man is going to come, and then He will reward each person according to his works"; Rev 20:12 "I saw the books opened, and everyone was judged according to his works" and Rom 2:6; 2 Cor 5:10 "On the day of judgement God rewards everyone according to his works." The works being rewarded are the actions of your life because they are in keeping with his life. More simply good or bad is credited to anyone according to what kind of intention is behind his acts according to his understanding of them. Most churches teach that "no one can fulfill the law because if you break one commandment you break them all" and justify their stance that "not to sin" is impossible and salvation is therefore by grace alone. What they don't understand is the passage being referenced is teaching that if someone acts against one commandment on purpose they will have no problem acting against other commandments on purpose because they deny that it is sin and therefore make nothing of religion. Clearly, someone who is an adulterer is not automatically a thief or a murderer etc. but he is not doing these other things because of civil law and to protect his reputation not because of his love for the Lord. Similarly, those who do love the Lord, if they willingly and with understanding of the commandments, keep from doing one bad thing because it is a sin they will keep from doing them all. For as soon as someone intentionally keeps from committing an evil he desires to do, because he knows it is a sin, the Lord keeps him to the intention of abstaining from the others. Yes everyone sins but those who do so willingly are not the same as those who are earnestly trying to avoid sin and in a moment are overcome by a bodily urge etc. and fail. One's sins will be covered by the sacrifice of Christ on the Cross and the other's sins will not. Rom 7:19 says "For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do--this I keep on doing..." which makes it clear that there is a belief and active life of avoiding sin present in the life whose sins will be covered by Christ." Any Minister that teaches no struggle against sin is required is deceiving you. The reality is the Lord can't enter into you until you have stopped willingly sinning and it is only by the power of Jesus Christ after he enters you that you will truly overcome any particular sin. Rev Clowe states," The more we abstain from what is evil, the more we will and intend what is good, because evil and good are opposites. Evil comes from hell and good comes from heaven. Therefore the more hell- that is, evil-is removed, the closer we get to heaven and the more we focus on good."

Clowe explains, "The truth of the above becomes obvious when we see eight of the Ten Commandments in this way. For example: (1) The less we worship other gods, the more we worship the true God. (2) The less we take the name of God in vain, the more we love the things that come from God. (3) The less we want to kill and to act on the basis of hatred or revenge, the more we want what is good for our neighbor. (4) The less we want to commit adultery or satisfy impure lusts, the more we want to find or live faithfully with a spouse. (5) The less we want to steal, the more we aim to be honest. (6) The less we want to testify falsely, the more we want to think and speak what is true. (7) and (8) The less we covet what our neighbors have, the more we want our neighbors to be doing well with what they have. From this it becomes clear that the Ten Commandments contain everything about how to love God ad our neighbor." Therefore Paul says, "Those who love others have fulfilled the law. You are not to commit adultery, you are not to kill, you are not to steal, you are not to be a false witness, you are not to covet things, and if anything else is commanded, it is included in this saying: You are to love your neighbor as yourself." Goodwill does no evil to our neighbor. Therefore the fulfillment of the law is goodwill. (Romans 13:8,9,10) From this we can see that we are not commanded to do things that directly relate to goodwill; instead, we are commanded not to do things that are opposite of goodwill. As explained the more we abstain from evils because they are sins, the more we want the goodness that relates to goodwill.

There is a love of intending and doing good and there is a love of and intending and doing evil. These two loves are opposite of each other. The second is a hellish love and the first is a heavenly one. God does not want you to have unrighteous loves because when you pass you will not find those loves in heaven. For example, if you love pornography, which Christ says is adultery, you will love adultery when you die. There is no adultery in heavenly societies so you will naturally choose a hellish society if this is one of your greatest loves unless you put off this love after death because of greater heavenly ones. The Bible says our loves will be tested after death: 1 Cor 3:13 “But on the judgment day, fire will reveal what kind of work each builder has done. The fire will show if a person's work has any value. “Notice it does not say your faith will be tested but your works. Fire in the Bible is just another word for "a love" which if unrighteous leads to temptation. We know that after death the Thief on the Cross will be with Christ in Paradise and that from 1 Cor 3:13 he will be tested to see if his internal will is righteous or unrighteous i.e. if his works have any value. The reason this is needed is that only works done through faith in Christ can withstand such temptation. This is the gift that is available through God’s grace. When you overcome an evil because of the Word of God it is actually Christ who has helped you overcome even though you feel it was done on your own accord. If you did not do a particular sin in this world simply because you didn’t want to look bad to other people or to appear like you were a Christian for respect etc. God is saying that when “these works” are tested after death all who refrained from sin for any other reason than "it is a sin" will fail when tested. Their WORK has no value.

Imagine that you are placed in such a paradise where every desire known to man is available where you know that there will be no consequence for anything you do and nobody will ever find out. Put yourself there now. Put an attractive stranger in a private romantic setting with you that wants to sleep with you or see stacks of money next to you on a window sill where nobody is looking. What would you do if you knew nobody would ever find out and that there was no punishment or consequence coming if you slept with that stranger or took that money? Those are the kinds of temptations that we will face after death. Only if we have practiced turning from those temptations here on Earth, with God’s help, through the study of his Word will we pass those tests after death because it is Christ IN US that will help us succeed and not our own efforts. So if you aren’t applying his teachings now you definitely won’t be applying them after death. However if you believe in the Lord and put the Ten Commandments into action by abstaining from evil, goodwill is the result. On our own none of us can abstain from evils because they are sins or do good things that are good before God. Thankfully, the more we abstain from evils because they are sins, the more we do good things from the Lord instead of from ourselves.

The second thing this article could have clarified is that loving God does not mean spending every waking second thinking of God. As the Bible teaches if you live a moral life based on his Word then you are loving God. When you perform your business honestly and are faithful to your wife in mind and body these are all acts of loving God. In an essence, the article is correct that every act and thought is God specific because all of your actions and thoughts are based on his teachings which show you have dedicated your life to his will and not your own. A Christian mind that has been honed like this truly does love God and his neighbor as proven out by the life lived and when given the same temptations and more after death your spiritual self will act in the same manner as you have here on Earth. It is these servants to the Word of God that will hear the praise of the Lord as expressed in the Parable of the Talents in Luke 19:17 "Well done, my good servant!' his master replied. 'Because you have been trustworthy in a very small matter, take charge of ten cities.” The Lord commends the servant, as “good and faithful” i.e. good, in the will, or heart, and faithful in the understanding, and in the conduct. "Well done," is the approval of the Lord, communicated to the man's conscience. The man, by being faithful to the teachings “his talents” in the few things seen in this world, develops a disposition to love good. And then the spiritual part of his mind is opened, and he obtains control over the many passions and thoughts of his natural mind i.e. his “talents are multiplied” because knowledge, properly put to good use, makes more knowledge.

The late Rev. Clowe explained that the natural idea is, that a Man, though in humble circumstances, in this world, shall be exalted, in the next world, to a position of honor and power. But the spiritual sense rises high above this selfish idea and shows that, in regeneration, the man shall be exalted into a state of mind in which he shall have power over himself, i.e. his will controlling his external behavior which are his works. This is a far greater promise being made in this parable which is that if you overcome this life’s temptations using the knowledge “talents” God has provided in his Word you are being promised HIS will and therefore success in overcoming evil in this life and even the greater promise of being acceptable to God on the day of judgement when you meet your eternal Master and your works are tested.

We know from the above parable that one servant buried the talent he was given and returned it to his Master upon his return. As the parable states: “ But he who had received one, went and dug in the earth, and hid his lord's money.” i.e. one who has knowledge of scripture, without love of scripture and good works, does not put his knowledge to practical good use to turn from evil. To dig, or search into the earth, means to study, to investigate, to try to get at the facts of knowledge, as facts. To hide the talent is to make no use of it. The earth represents our natural mind, To hide the talent in the earth, is to immerse our knowledge in the things of our outward, sensuous life; to use them for low and external motives, such as mere pleasure, or reputation, or selfish influence. Then, though we have the form of truth, in our knowledge, we have neither its spirit nor its use. We may have a kind of outward faith, but it will be "faith alone," without love, and without good fruits. And "by their fruits ye shall know them." So we should heed Jesus declaration in John 14:21 "Whoever keeps My commandments and does them, he is the one who loves Me, and I will love him and make My home with him. But surely whoever does not love Me does not keep My commandments." Clowe additionally explains, “Truth can be learned and stored in our memory, but if we do not agree with it and act on it, it does not become living truth. On the other hand, if it is drawn from our memory and embedded in our will by intellectual activity, that is, if we intentionally make following the commandments part of our habits and activities, then it becomes living truth-truth that we believe. This is accomplished by the Lord when we stop doing evil."Clowe's conclusion was, " Who cannot see from reason alone that sins cannot be taken away from a man except by actual repentance, which consists in his seeing his sins, imploring the Lord's help, and desisting from them? To see, believe, and teach otherwise, is not from the Word, nor from sound reason, but from cupidity and a depraved will, which are proper to man, and from this comes the debasement of his intelligence.

In closing I have to ask those who still want to hold on to their old life, while declaring they believe and follow Christ, to rationally look at Jesus declaration in MAT 10:39 in which he states: "If you cling to your life, you will lose it; but if you give up your life for me, you will find it." and God's adomonition in Deut 30:15 " See, I have set before you today life and good, death and evil, in that I command you to love the Lord your God, to walk in His ways, and to keep His commandments, His statutes, and his judgdements, that you may live... But if your heart turns away so that you do not hear, and are drawn away... I announce to you today that you shall surely perish." And to those who are on the path to spirtual death God declares in Ecl 9:5 that, "For theliving know that they will die, but the dead know nothing, and they have no more reward..." Which more simply stated is read, "If you are committed to a self-centered life, sadly you don't know love, you don't know truth, and you don't know what you are missing." Yes, you only need to believe in Christ's teachings to be saved but those who truly believe have given themselves to live by his Word. Those are the people who will find and enjoy heaven. - John Kreitzer



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