The Holy Standard

Matthew 5:48 Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect.

Back in my younger days, 30 plus years ago, I fell in love with a girl. I liked everything about her. But being young and confess also very STUPID and immature, I thought to myself in a commitment issue in my mind, “if I do marry this one, what if someone better, one who is more pretty, more nice, and more fun comes along, I’d be tied down?” I am sure many young guys can relate to this immature false dilemma, as you deceive yourself based on everyone is single, so why settle. As IF we had all sorts of options to pick from and the FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out) idiocy takes over. The egocentric idiocy in the immaturity was to think there was something “more”!

We broke up not for that reason, but because I was a total degenerate, insecure in every way, selfish, self-serving, pathetically immature, and as I look at myself in my former life, I question now how in the world she even went out with me. When looking back, quite honestly I have no qualms on it, she made the RIGHT decision! Be that as it may, that immature foolish question I asked myself on commitment to her was answered. I dated many girls after this relationship, and no one even came close to the standard this former girlfriend set. It is like trading in a great car because you thought a newer car was better, only to discover the old car fit you much better, and then never being able to find a car like that again.

Little did my degenerate dumb mind and heart know at the time, but no one would come along who was “better” or “more pretty” or I was more comfortable with, not a one came even close. It says something about who she was, but more so how very insecure and utterly dumb I was to take it all for granted. The immature idiocy in the “more” was learned after several years of introspection and experience. Just a side note to anyone reading this, try and not make that mistake in your relationships! Don’t take God’s blessings for granted. Or you will look back one day as I have and realize just how very stupid and immature you were to even ask that question of “what if there is more”.

This gets me to the point of the Holy Standard that God has set. You might be thinking like in the example I gave, “what if there is a better way” to salvation, a lower standard which will satisfy your salvation. Because the actual standard is ABSOLUTE perfection, not a blemish to God’s law in order to be saved. There is indeed NO OTHER or NO BETTER way to heaven, God set the standard and it is not up for debate. Like the former girlfriend example, hopefully it won’t be too late for you to realize there was nothing better than God’s way by His standard. There isn’t anything “more” than God!

You might be thinking that standard is impossible? It is quite impossible without a Mediator, His name is Jesus Christ. The Good News is that Jesus stood in for your TOTAL lack of absolute perfection, and died on a Cross to pay your sin debt so that you achieved the Holy Standard! Yes, this is the Gospel! And those who believe this shall be saved. Look, if God was tolerant of your lack of perfection, Jesus would never had to die on the Cross.

Some will try and invent new standards for God, lesser ones, where they can bring their garbage of sin into His Kingdom by their self righteousness. So the foolishness is to try to lower the standard and still think you are going to heaven. In other words, you are telling God, “save your Savior, I will save myself.”

So why you may ask did God give us all these commandments? It was done to show you just how SINFUL you truly are. It wasn’t so that you subjectively could break a law here or there and still believe you were “holy and good”. No! They were given to demonstrate just how UNHOLY you are and just HOW desperate you should be to cling to the only one who could save you from your sins and imperfection, again His name is Jesus Christ!

The fact is Jesus kept each and every commandment of God to absolute perfection. He is the sinless Lamb of God. His sole motive and purpose was to redeem you from your LAW BREAKING because you failed to meet God’s Holy Standard! What greater love can you find? He didn’t need to because we never deserved it! What we deserved was eternal torment and darkness, the wages of sin is death.

Once you realize and submit to God’s Holy Standard of absolute perfection, only then you will understand the total need for a Redeemer, a Messiah, a Savior, Jesus Christ. Until then, you will be as foolish as I was with my former girlfriend, and keep grasping at the “what if there is something more, something better? I can’t commit” Only then to find out there was NOTHING AND NO ONE BETTER than Jesus Christ!

The Elvis Gospel

Having watched a documentary on Elvis Presley where they interviewed many close to him, I can say sadly that he most likely died an unbeliever. And I will explain specifically why this would be the case. Elvis followed a pantheistic false gospel, it would be the same Oprah “many roads” gospel by which the theology says there are more ways to heaven than Jesus Christ.

Elvis would have probably said he was a Christian, but hearing from those who documented and curated his estate along with his close companions, Elvis didn’t take the approach that Jesus was the only way, but many ways and he sought to be on all roads as to not to miss out on heaven. He doubted there was just that narrow path to heaven through Jesus, so he tried to cling on all sorts of paths.

Clear evidence of this were the books he read and the spiritual guidance he was taking from Larry Geller, his hair dresser actually. Elvis, like many unbelievers, could not bring himself to believe that the Bible held the only truth. Rather, by the lack of saving faith, he asked “what if this is not the only truth?”

So he read books on Mormonism, Islam, Buddhism, etc. all sorts of religions and thought all could contain some truth. So again, as his curator said “Elvis read about everything he could so as to not miss out on heaven”, but by this ideology HE WAS MISSING OUT! I am not saying one cannot read these books or they would be unsaved. What I am saying is that by giving them EQUAL status with God’s word in truth, that is where the obvious problem would be. As if the Quran for example would be equal to Scripture, or some self proclaimed “Prophet” whose words you set equal to the words in Scripture. This is called idolatry.

He was so very mixed up in his pantheism that he got baptized 3 times, once after his death by the Mormon church. Because he couldn’t bring himself to believe Jesus Christ was the only way, the truth, and the only life. He was shadow boxing in the dark, grasping at straws. He was the rich young ruler who came to Jesus and lied said “I kept the commandments”, and when Jesus challenged him to give up his riches, he left immediately and sought another path which would compromise to his belief system. It is why Jesus said it would easier for a camel to go through an eye of a needle than a rich (worldly) man to gain heaven. He wasn’t saying that the rich couldn’t be saved, but they were the most likely to reject the Gospel based on their wealth and fame.

They said Elvis bought thousands of copies of the book “The Prophet” which is nothing more than a worldly spiritual “wide roads” prose. Pantheistic in nature. So instead of buying thousands of copies of Scripture and handing it out, he had thought this other book was more truthful. I suspect the Bible was much too convicting for him, as it would have condemned his degenerate lifestyle, so he tried to make his salvation work by these other paths of which he believed were better, more viable, where God in those false paths overlooked his sins and zero repentance.

If the Bible is not complete enough or sufficient enough for you? God is NEVER complete for you, as you remain in rebellion to Him. If you believe that spiritual advice should come from the godless, atheist, agnostic, wiccan, and those who claim there are more ways to eternal life outside of Jesus, you are not God’s child but a child of the devil!

The ancient Israelites committed the grave sin Elvis was committing, they viewed neighboring religions as equal. By Satan’s influence, it is “as long as I worship the Almighty God along WITH these other religions and gods, I am fine, all is well”. God repeatedly CONDMENED the Israelites for doing this as it breaks the very first commandment He gave “thou shall love the Lord God with your whole heart, mind, and soul”, that leaves room for no other god.

Elvis was a great singer and entertainer, arguably the best of the best in the 20th century, who died at the early age of 42. He loved the world, and 1 John 2:15 says “Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.” I personally love the gospel songs he produced, but it didn’t make him a Christian. If in hell, Elvis would probably tell you that he’d give it all back and be a nobody if he had just one more day to repent. He would grieve greatly that is only child became a fire breathing Scientologist for many years as that godless church tried to destroy her and her family, after all, she was taking the lead from his spiritual pantheism.

Do NOT think you are anymore special than Elvis if you are a Christian. Elvis lived a life of sin as do we all before salvation. We all were sinners, and by this it should really send you to your knees in thanksgiving that you will not end up like him. As his loved ones and fans only see his worldliness to this day, not Jesus Christ and His Gospel. Thank God that He saved you! And ALL the worldly riches, fame, fortune, could never replace that love He has for you!

I see Elvis as the rich man in the parable with Lazarus. Sitting in hell, trying to warn his loved ones and his millions of fans across the world, but it is too late.

Will You Pass the Test?

In 1871, an unknown Christian at the time named Horatio Spafford came home from work one day to learn that his darling 4 year old son had just died of scarlet fever. With immense mourning and grief his wife and he went on. Things didn’t get better, as Spafford’s real estate business venture went up in literal smoke upon the Great Chicago Fire. He lost about everything, his finances were in dire straights. By 1873, his family was destitute.

Instead of wallowing in this misery, Spafford decided that his family was going to help a known pastor out who was going to do some evangelizing in Europe. I suspect he did so to just get away from the misery but also because of his faith in Jesus Christ. He had some business to attend to, so the plan was to send his wife and his 4 young daughters ahead to to Europe on a steam ship which was leaving. The plan was he would meet them later.

Days into their trip, and crossing the Atlantic, the ship his wife and daughters were on collided with another ship of which then immediately sank. Spafford’s worst fears were realized when he received a telegram from his wife which said two words “SAVED ALONE!”. By this, she was saying she survived but his 4 daughters perished.

He then set out to meet his grieving wife on another ship, and upon that ship instead of writing an angry effigy to God and condemning his faith in Him, he wrote a hymn to God, which is still well known today called “It is Well”.

These are the lyrics
When peace like a river attendeth my way
When sorrows like sea billows roll
Whatever my lot, Thou hast taught me to say
It is well, it is well with my soul

Though Satan should buffet, though trials should come
Let this blest assurance control
That Christ (yes, He has) has regarded my helpless estate
And has shed His own blood for my soul

My sin, oh the bliss of this glorious thought (a thought)
My sin, not in part, but the whole (every bit, every bit, all of it)
Is nailed to the cross, and I bear it no more (yes)
Praise the Lord, praise the Lord, O my soul

And Lord, haste the day when my faith shall be sight
The clouds be rolled back as a scroll
The trump shall resound, and the Lord shall descend
Even so, it is well with my soul”

Spafford turned to God, He trusted that whether the good, bad, indifferent that God’s purpose in this was perfect. Even IN THE BLEAKEST MISERY, he wrote these words! Having gone through heart breaks, not even close to the scale of Spafford’s, I can say this is the only way one could climb out of that misery, dread, and depression. Turning to God alone! Not to man, not to other’s who will enable your wallowing, but to God alone! Will you pass that test? And do not think for a second you are somehow more special than Horatio Spafford.

I ask that you listen to the hymn below, listen to the words of a broken man who had everything taken away from him in a very short period of time. If it doesn’t move you, or you cannot relate to him, you are most likely still in sinful rebellion to God. And upon that day when everything falls apart in your life, you will be left all alone and there will be NO WAY out of that darkness. And if by chance you did make it out? Ask yourself WHO by His gracious and mercy led you out! It was always the Omnipotent Great Almighty God!

Can you search yourself and then sing in all honesty, “It is Well With My Soul”? The only way would be to place your faith alone in Jesus Christ alone just as Horatio Spafford, who was in His peace and rest, so when the darkness came repeatedly, although devastated and completely broken hearted he remained unmoved in Christ’s joy, that gracious peace without total understanding.

Gideon’s Doubt

Judges 6:16 And the Lord said to him, “Surely I will be with you, and you shall defeat the Midianites as one man.” 17 Then he said to Him, “If now I have found favor in Your sight, then show me a sign that it is You who talk with me. 18 Do not depart from here, I pray, until I come to You and bring out my offering and set it before You.”

One of the favorite stories in the Bible is of when the Lord, the pre-incarnate Jesus, met Gideon. Israel was being oppressed by its neighbors, they would come in and steal and plunder everything and overwhelm them with numbers. One day, Gideon met a man by a tree who said “The Lord is with you, you mighty man of valor!” (Judges 6:12). Gideon’s first response to the Lord was of disgust, basically asking Him why He would allow His children to be persecuted.

The Lord ignored that question, and said He would give all of Israel’s enemies a defeat at the hand of Gideon and a very small army He would select. Now this perplexed Gideon as he probably thought “Really? That is impossible, who is this guy?” So instead of just saying “Yes, Lord, I will obey”, Gideon’s first thoughts were of doubt.

So Gideon put the Lord through three tests because of this doubt, all of which the Lord complied and by His mercy, didn’t laugh at Gideon but was empathetic to his doubt. Gideon lacked faith, so he needed a sign that this was God Himself speaking to him. And the other point to make here, Gideon was taught that if one were to actually see God face to face, he would surely die, so this was fueling his doubt.

What Gideon didn’t know, was this was Jesus in His pre-incarnate state, who several Israelites saw at various times, a man, and called Him “the Angel of the Lord”. So naturally Gideon would have had some questions. I ask you to read the FULL account in Judges 6-8, and study this. After this testing was completed, Gideon trusted God, and he then went onto defeat the surrounding countries with ease but in an unorthodox way. They used trumpets instead of spears as commanded. The Lord wanted to make His power known not only to the persecuting nations, but to the Israelites, to remove their DOUBT. Upon blowing their trumpets, the opposing armies went to war basically with themselves and killed each other instead of the Israelites. While Gideon and his army then executed the kings of these countries in the end.

I would say after this, Gideon probably regretted that doubt! “Why didn’t I just trust Him?” “I am sad that I ever doubted Him”. And we all have been there in times of trouble and sadness. The Lord promises to see us through the time, but we say “I need a miracle, a sign to know if You are real”. And I know from experience of looking back, that I have regretted every time I doubted God and His provision and protection.

What a great God! He grants mercy and grace instead of just allowing us to perish in our doubt during those times! He could have told Gideon “fine, you doubt Me, so I leave you to your own devices”. But instead He went along with Gideon’s childlike tedious tests of Him understanding Gideon’s nature and why Gideon would doubt.

If the Lord is with you, is there any obstacle you could not overcome? Any mountain high enough of which you could not climb? Without Him, the impossible remains impossible. With Him, the possible always exists, so do not doubt! Our fallen nature is filled with doubt, if born-again, you should be growing out of this doubt. Trust in God alone!! He is the most powerful, the most gracious, the most merciful! With Him, those who persecute you will fall in an instant before you, just as those nations did before Gideon!

Heart Breaks

If you are an atheist, an unbeliever in God, a common question I pose to you is why would you or anyone for that matter would go through a heart break? I mean if we are just like every inanimate object or animate being, why do we experience heart break?

The fact is because we can feel and experience loss would preclude we are more than just a body of flesh. We have a conscience, we feel things, we have emotions. There is more to you than just a body, you have something called a soul or spirit. Where did that come from? And why don’t other creatures experience the same experience in the depths of a heart break?

Could it be that you were created by an Intelligent Designer, and your very DNA gave you the ability to experience all sorts of emotions and hurt? If not, tell me where it came from, or rather PROVE to me it came from anywhere else.

And the fact that I personally can almost remember in the slightest detail every major heart break in life, what was said, what happened, where I was when it happened, tells me that I am more than this body of flesh. You would need to be quite intellectually dishonest with yourself in order to NOT believe you are more than a body. Where did those feelings of guilt and right vs wrong come from? If you were just a highly evolved creature, every creature should be experiencing guilt and mortifying hurt, but the survey says this is NOT the case. You won’t find a Vet prescribing psychotropic drugs to a chicken or a duck or even a dog, because they do not possess a human being’s innate emotional behavior.

The fact is the Almighty God, the Intelligent Designer, the Creator made human beings different than everything else on the planet. Your DNA and intelligence is much higher in the category of a being than everything else. But above all, you have a conscience, an inherent sense of good vs bad, and can feel guilt, you can feel sadness and happiness, and with this a memory. The lowest IQ human being on the planet is in my estimation is one thousand times smarter than the next creature God created. Let that sink in. You might think some animals are smarter, but are they? What is their memory span? Can they speak a language or more than one language and understand it simultaneously? How many emotions do they really possess? What logical reasoning do they possess other than fight or flight survival and reproduction? Sure, some animals can exhibit reasoning, but only by simulation and reward, not by any innate functioning in their brains.

A dog can exhibit empathy, but this is a learned behavior from imitation of their owner, not an innate one. If they were just to be what they were born/innate to be, they wouldn’t exhibit empathy towards human beings or to their own kind, they would be “wild”, not domesticated. We don’t need to domesticate human beings because they already have that innate quality in their DNA. Don’t believe me? Just view an African country where dogs are not domesticated and how they behave around human beings.

God gives us those heart breaks to remind us we are human beings! We are tops on the created being order here on earth. Ask yourself why other creatures haven’t evolved with the same intelligence and technology if evolution was a factual science. And I don’t believe any humanist or atheist could refute this argument by logical reasoning.

There is in fact an Intelligent Designer, His name is the Almighty God! Again, you would need to remove all intellectual honesty not to admit this fact.

Do NOT Force It!

Genesis 16:1 Now Sarai, Abram’s wife, had not borne him a child, but she had an Egyptian slave woman whose name was Hagar. So Sarai said to Abram, “See now, the Lord has prevented me from bearing children. Please have relations with my slave woman; perhaps I will obtain children through her.” And Abram listened to the voice of Sarai

I told my Dad today in the nursing home that the most important advice he ever gave me was not to force things when working mechanically. When I was younger and trying to fix something while he watched, he would gently say “now don’t force it”. Meaning if the part gets stuck, don’t keep going with your tools and pressure on it because it will lead to damaging the thing you are trying to fix or it will probably lead to breaking it. Having had that happen many times, his advice was invaluable!

As I was thinking about that line “don’t force it” from my Dad, its application can also be invaluable when applied to many things. Relationships for example. How many of your relationships have failed or flourished very briefly because one or the other or both forced it? Or in a business sense, a deal will generally fail when the salesperson tries to force their will on the customer. Or a parent who forced their child into eating something, it won’t go so well. Or in a Gospel sharing sense, the mistake is always made when we try to force our faith on another.

As I explained, mechanical forcing a tool on something will lead to demise, just as forcing anything on anyone will lead to a similar breaking point or demise. Sara as depicted in the passage above forced the promise from God that she would bear a child to Abraham, and thought her way was the way it would happen. And what happened was pure drama of which any modern reality show would depict. She became instantly jealous of Hagar and felt betrayed by Abraham, and it was her idea all along to force a child into their family. There was much fighting, and bickering which ensued of which she ended up kicking Hagar out of their life along with Abraham’s other son, Ishmael.

Sara forced her will into God’s promise and it did not go well at all! God eventually did give her a son, Isaac, but the problem with Hagar and Ishmael remained all because of her lack of patience. And that is what forcing is, it is a pure result of the LACK OF PATIENCE! We want things from God right now so we force our will onto His, and it backfires always. Some believe they were meant to start a new church, which they may or may not have been called to do, but they don’t wait on the Lord, and the church is started only to struggle greatly and sometimes they need to close the doors.

And I am hardly the one to be looked as a beacon on patience. In my former life I was very IMPATIENT, I forced things and did not heed that advice from my Dad. And I can’t think of example where it went well upon that impatience!
Upon my rebirth, patience was the number one thing God graced me with. And being that I was a zero in patience on scale of hundred, all I could go is up on that scale. It was a learned fruit from Him by reading and studying His word and seeing the man examples of impatience, forcing things, which never led to good results. Read the account of Peter who thought just after Jesus said He’d build His church on the faith he just demonstrated (Matthew 16), Peter then tried to force his will onto Jesus, saying that he’d prevent Jesus from His sacrifice. Jesus called him “Satan”, a pure admonishment to Peter’s forcing.

Galatians 5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,  23 gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law

I now see that advice from my Dad as God speaking through him, “do not force it”, “be patient”, “if things are stuck, there is a reason for this, so wait and approach it from another way”. And God always saying “My promises, will and purpose are always perfect, so do not force anything, just be patient and TRUST in Me!”.

Where Are You Going After This?

“If you don’t know where you are going, you might end up someplace else” Yogi Berra

The question is where do you think are you going when you die? The atheist would answer, “nowhere”, the agnostic would answer. “I really can’t tell you, but somewhere”, the sinner encapsulated in a false church/world religion would answer, “I can only hope if I do enough religious works and good deeds, it will be heaven”, and only the Christian saved by grace alone through faith alone would answer “there isn’t a single doubt in my mind, I am going to heaven to live eternally with my Savior, Jesus Christ”.

If you believe the atheist answer of “nowhere” isn’t a bit troubling, you are probably an atheist. That this life is all there is? My view is even the atheist internally wonders “what happens after this”, because Romans 1:20 says that God has made Himself known through His creation.

Externally the atheist might be quite proud of this their “faith” that this is all there is, but if they were honest, internally they are asking that question, “where am I going after this?” Why you may ask? Because if you view their utter disdain for any religion, the nature to this is a tell of that internal struggle going on. If you were 100 percent confident in your atheist faith, logic would say you wouldn’t protest any religion. You might protest the imposing of religious precepts on you, but NOT because they were helping you live your best life now by logical moral virtue. But this is not what we see from atheists, it generally is an overall zeal to squash any logical moral virtue from God because of that internal question.

Agnostics and sinners encapsulated in a world religion have a similar answer to “where are you going after this life?”, and it is “I really can’t be certain”. There is this knowledge from good vs. evil, and the insecure hope that is if there is a God, they can tip the scales of justice in their favor. It is the idea that if I live the most external virtuous moral life, and those in a world religion being the most religious, that this will be my ticket into Paradise. Various jokes are made about the Apostle Peter standing before the “Pearly Gates”, and he being the gate keeper to allow one into heaven or send them to hell, which would make Peter sovereign over God in this mentality influenced by Satan. It might be just a joke, but the joke is a tell, the sinner as this is NOT placing their faith in Jesus Christ, but in themselves and humanism. So there is no assurance, just a vain hope that God sees me as a “good person” enough to allow me entry into heaven.

A Christian saved by grace alone through faith alone in Jesus alone, is always going to be externally and internally confident that their next stop is heaven! Those in the other category of a world religion I described would call this “cocky” and “arrogant” and “presumptuous” because they are misinterpreting the boast. A Christians KNOWS they are going to heaven NOT by ANY boast in themselves, but ONLY in the boast of Jesus Christ! Because their faith is in Him alone, there can be 100 percent confidence! Jesus was perfectly obedient to His death on the Cross, perfectly righteous, perfect in every way as the promised Savior. We are imperfect in every way so it is absolutely plausible to be completely confident that the Christian is always heaven bound because the Christian KNOWS with an ounce of doubt that Jesus paid for their entire sin debt, they stand forgiven, justified, redeemed, here and right now! Not because they were worthy, but because Jesus is!

Take stock in your faith now, and ask what category are you in? WHERE ARE YOU GOING AFTER THIS LIFE?

Sobering Truth

James 4:15 “whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away.

When life on this earth ends, many will finally figure out just how fleeting and short it was. Even the sand, rock, mountains, trees, and grass live much longer than human beings here on earth. So as 1 John 2:15 teaches us, that “If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.” If you don’t believe this now, you will when your life ends.

The things below will mean absolutely nothing at that point.

“I sold millions of records, I was famous, thousands cheered me on at concerts”

“I worked my way up the corporate ladder, and owned vacation homes”

“I got to see many wonders of the world, indeed I traveled the world”

“I was a parent to many children, and had grandchildren”.

“They named a building after me, a road after me”

“I was on TV, people watched my shows, I was a famous celebrity”

“My team won the championship”

“I broke many records in sport and am in the Hall of Fame”

“I married my true love” (some will say 2, 3, 4, 5 times)

“I was highly attractive”

“I had more followers than most on social media”

“My kids turned out wonderful”

“They will say I lived a life of integrity, compassion, and kindness”

“I cared for animals and volunteered for many environmental causes”

“I lived a good quiet life, and was a good person”

“I did almost everything on my bucket list in life”

“I left my family a fortune”

“I was a talented _________________(fill in the blank)”

“There were probably many who came to my funeral”

“I had many friends who cared about me”

“I had a great job and worked very hard at it”

And I am sure many other things could be on this worldly list speaking on one’s life, but the thing that won’t be on that list would be “I loved my sins, I was a sinner”, “I followed Jesus Christ and by His grace alone He saved me, so this life on earth is not all there is”.

You see, there are MANY now waiting the Final Judgment in hell most likely still thinking on those worldly accomplishments and wondering “what have they got me?” and “why didn’t listen to that person who shared the Gospel?” and “where are my friends? where is my family?”. Some will be like the rich man we read of in Scripture who asked Abraham to warn his family on earth as he sat in torment.

The SOBERING TRUTH is that you cannot EVADE God’s judgment by your worldly accomplishments! You may have deceived yourself into thinking they can, but will just end up with your favorite celebrity waiting for the Lake of Fire.

If you desire heavenly things, believe Jesus Christ, place your faith alone in Him that He alone paid your sin debt and you shall be saved. You won’t spend eternity thinking “if I just had listened” as you realize your worldly life meant really nothing at that point, and how SHORT that time was compared to eternity.

Am I a Bad Person

A question you might be asked as Christian is an emotional appeal of “do you think I am a bad person?”. The person who knows you are a Christian is probing you by an emotional appeal with a loaded question. What they really are asking “do you think I am going to hell?”. How do you respond?

There is only one correct way to approach this question, and this Scripture’s way. Romans 3:10-19 clearly says in not so nice language that we are ALL condemned, we are ALL sinners according to Romans 5:12 and Romans 3:23. So if ALL have sinned, all are guilty of sin including you.

So the emotional appeal of “do you think I am a bad person?” has a Scriptural approach, “yes, but we ALL are bad people in the light of a holy eternal God”. In the context of a false comparison of which I wrote about last month, you might not be as bad when compared to next worse off sinner in mankind’s eyes, but in God’s eyes, we all stand condemned.

But you might be thinking, “that’s unfair”. It is only unfair if you don’t really believe in God or don’t really understand who He is or what absolute perfection is. Fair would mean God automatically extinguishes His creation upon every sin committed and sends that soul to eternal torment. You don’t want “fair” from our standpoint, you should want MERCY! That’s if you know what God has said in His word. You see? We deserve His justice, we don’t deserve His mercy.

So if it is impossible to be “good” in God’s eyes based on sin, who can be saved? The answer is God is also love in that He provided a remedy upon the first sin committed on this earth. The wages of our sin is death, but the free gift of eternal life was promised through His Son Jesus Christ. So by His mercy, He provided a substitute for your penalty of sin, His name is Jesus Christ!

The remedy is so simple, so clear, not confusing, yet mankind by their world religions have attempted to make is a complex mess in order for their followers to become dependent on them, instead of Jesus. The way to salvation is to place your ENTIRE faith alone in Jesus, that He alone was your sin debt payer and you are saved! That by His death He conquered your sin and by His rising from the dead it was your indication that you too shall rise, in other words the gift of eternal life.

Do you belong to a church which continues to teach “you are a good person” or “be your best you”?? And all you need to do is “do better”, and in the end that should tip the scale of justice in your favor? That my friend is Satan’s distortion, a false gospel, which ends in eternal torment. Why you may ask? Because you dismissed the ONLY debt payer, Jesus Christ, and sought to be saved by your lonesome.

I heard this as an analogy. It is like God demanding that you physically jump to the moon in order for sins to be paid. You join a health club or gym who has all sorts of ideas on how to jump high. They prescribe various vitamins, give you special shoes and special exercises the gym’s trainers contrived. After some time you are jumping higher than many of your classmates, but your vertical height doesn’t even come close to reaching the ceiling in the building. So you tricked your mind into thinking, I am jumping higher than everyone here, so God might just accept that, but He doesn’t!

The demand is to jump to the moon! There is no possible way, but you continue to trick your mind and your religion helps you do so. And in the fine print in this analogy, God put on a sign in the gym in clear and definite words “Stop rejecting Me, Jesus jumped to the moon on your behalf, so to be forgiven, you must believe in Him as your substitute”. Yet you can’t bring yourself to believe that, so you continue to try to jump higher? Your friends and family are part of the gym (church) so they all are training as well, “so this way can’t be wrong, one day I will jump to the moon” as you tricked your mind and believed the gym to reject the promise of God through Jesus.

This my friend is the analogy of what many are doing by their world religions, as they try to coach you to do something frankly NO ONE can do, that is to save yourself, as they say “do this, don’t do that, take this, believe us”, while again you cannot even reach the ceiling in the gym despite all your efforts. Your pride won’t allow you to believe in that substitute Jesus, and your world religion is making sure of it!

Place your faith alone in that substitute, Jesus Christ, and you shall be saved. The sign post is clear! God didn’t mince His words.