Christianity is far more than forgiveness for past failures (sins) and the confident hope of a pleasant future in heaven, it is the power of Christ and the presence of Christ with us and in us right now, in the present moment, to mesh into every part and parcel of life.
Is any human debacle more disruptive than idolatry – that of spending a lifetime, or even one day, with the wrong god?
Yes, there literally is “hell to pay” – the question is, “Who is picking up your tab?”
And so Jesus is able, now and forever, to save from the punishment of sin all who come to God through Him because He lives forever to pray for them. Hebrews 7:25 (NLV)
This world is full of exceptional people. There are great numbers around us who have heard the GOOD NEWS of the Savior JESUS and have even read the Holy Scriptures for themselves, yet they remain unconvinced of its promises, uncertain of its purpose, and unchanged by its power. Yes, these are exceptional individuals – women and men with exceptionally closed minds and exceptionally calloused hearts – who refuse to believe there is any need outside of which human ingenuity and intellect has the wherewithal to meet.
There is no such thing as a “used to be” believer – only never to be believers, now believers, and not yet believers.
Life is all about connection. In order to fulfill its mission, life requires proper connection to a power source – a means by which it can be animated, motivated, and energized. Plant life and animal life are innately connected to their Creator. GOD supplies and supports their existence so that they do as they are designed and have no say in the matter.
Our homes, automobiles, appliances, electronics, machines, and all such contraptions, are found to be useless and worthless without proper connection to their power sources, energy services, and networks which allow them to function properly. With the right connection though, these items do what they are supposed to do – and they have no choice to do anything otherwise.
Human life is different. Human beings enter this world dis-connected. The instant we’re born, the doctor cuts the umbilical cord to dis-connect us from our mother; and due to The Fall that occurred in Eden, we also find ourselves dis-connected from our life source as well. And what makes human beings unique is that we can choose to remain dis-connected forever. Our free will gives us the capacity to think things over, the ability to act in a variety of ways, and the liberty to accept or to refuse.
Yet here’s the drawback, human life has neither value nor purpose when it remains dis-connected from its source of life – THE LORD JESUS CHRIST. When dis-connected from JESUS, human existence is a meaningless march toward death – forever dying a forever death in a garbage dump (hell); but when connected to JESUS, it becomes a magnificent transformation into life without measure – a full and free, whole and holy endless existence in Kingdom come.
It’s all about connection.
Because of the sacrifice of the Messiah, His blood poured out on the altar of the Cross, we’re a free people—free of penalties and punishments chalked up by all our misdeeds. And not just barely free, either. Abundantly free! He thought of everything, provided for everything we could possibly need, letting us in on the plans He took such delight in making. He set it all out before us in Christ, a long-range plan in which everything would be brought together and summed up in him, everything in deepest heaven, everything on planet earth. It’s in Christ that we find out who we are and what we are living for. Long before we first heard of Christ and got our hopes up, He had his eye on us, had designs on us for glorious living, part of the overall purpose He is working out in everything and everyone. It’s in Christ that you, once you heard the truth and believed it (this Message of your salvation), found yourselves home free—signed, sealed, and delivered by the Holy Spirit. This signet from God is the first installment on what’s coming, a reminder that we’ll get everything God has planned for us, a praising and glorious life.
Ephesians 1:7-14 (The Message)
I have found that life outside is so much better when the sun is shining. Even a frigid, windy, winter day is quite pleasant when the added warmth and brightness of the sun shining down on me.
I have also noticed that life inside is much better when the Son is shining. My outlook and attitude toward the challenges, frustrations, and irritations of life are more bearable when I begin the day in the clarity of His Word and invite Him lead the way.
I don’t believe it is any coincidence how the words – sun and Son are pronounced the same and how similar their affects are upon life – life outside and life inside. In life outside, the closer the relationship in proximity to the sun (nearer to the equator), the more abundant is the life to be found; in life inside, the closer the relationship in proximity to the Son (nearer to the Savior JESUS) the more abundant is the life to be found.
This is the testimony in essence: God gave us eternal life; the life is in his Son. So, whoever has the Son, has life; whoever rejects the Son, rejects life. 1 John 5:12