#2050 1109 14P

            Very few people—including many who are Christians—really know what it means to be prepared for eternal life.  Most churches will say they give full Gospel teaching, but most messages do not teach the full Truth of God’s Word.  Every individual is directly responsible for their own fate, but religious teachers, who do not give “the whole counsel of God” Acts 20:27, are indirectly responsible for people who are not saved—because they did not declare God’s full Truth.

            The average person believes that if they live a good and decent moral life, they are ready for Heaven; and every Christian should be careful not to be immoral in thought or deed; nor to have secret vices like the world.  1 Timothy 1:5 “The purpose of the commandment is love from a pure heart, from a good conscience, and from sincere faith.”

            God’s Word teaches us how to have a pure heart, a clear conscience, and real faith in the atonement Blood of Christ.  Faith in Christ gives us freedom from addictions and wrong desires or thoughts.  Jesus said Matthew 5:28 “anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart.”  Thinking immoral thoughts is as wrong as committing immoral acts.  God’s full Truth takes wrong desires out by the roots.

            Everyone is tempted in some way, but God promises the ability to resist and not yield to temptations—in thought or action.  The Holy Spirit enables us to know that the devil is putting those wrong thoughts and desires in our mind—we are to reject them at once.  As a believer in Christ, we must lead a moral life in this world—but being prepared for paradise goes further than that.

            Millions believe the historical aspects of the Bible, but that does not prepare them for entering Heaven.  The true standard of a true preparation goes beyond knowing historical facts.  Just being a church member; living a moral life; believing the story of creation; and knowing about the sacrifice of Jesus Christ on the cross, does not of themselves prepare a person for paradise.

            No matter when a person may have lived, if they do not advance any further than that concerning the true Gospel of Jesus Christ, then they are not in Heaven.  We have to know the facts of the matter and live a true Christian life, so we can escape that horrible fate of the masses—and as God enables, to help others escape judgment.

            God in heaven is more worthy of our supreme love and devotion than any relative or family member on earth.  We are to love everyone, of course, but God and His Truth must be placed ahead of anyone or anything that conflicts with His will and Word.

            The Scribes and Pharisees were very strict with their religion and carefully kept the Sabbath.  They were outwardly religious and sincere; but Jesus said Matthew 5:20 “that unless your righteousness exceeds the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven.”  Later He told them John 8:44 “You belong to your father, the devil.”

            Job was self-righteous—but he was not aware of that attitude.  He really tried to help anyone and everyone who needed it.  He said there was no widow he did not supply, nor orphan he did not feed.  All those good things that Job did to please God, however, were done in human strength and ability.

            Cornelius was a good person—outwardly; he was Acts 10:2 “a devout man and one who feared God with all his household, who gave alms generously to the people, and prayed to God always.”  God knew that Cornelius was honest, sincere, and willing to listen, so He sent him a message that would explain the full Truth.

            An angel informs Cornelius to ask for the apostle—Acts 10:33-35 “So I sent to you immediately, and you have done well to come. Now therefore, we are all present before God, to hear all the things commanded you by God.  Then Peter opened his mouth and said: In truth I perceive that God shows no partiality.  But in every nation whoever fears Him and works righteousness is accepted by Him.” 

            The apostle began; 38 “God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power, who went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil.”  Only God knows our true spiritual condition, because Jeremiah 17:9 “The heart is deceitful above all things, And desperately wicked; Who can know it?”  Many people in the world are deceived, and do not know their true spiritual condition.  Originally, every human heart is alike, and just as wicked as the other.

            A serious trial will reveal our true heart condition.  Anger, hatred, resentment, self-importance, self-confidence, and pride can be hidden within us.  A serious offense to us can bring out a revengeful attitude or a hateful thought—something that had been there all the time—we were just not aware of it.  It is wrong for someone to offend us, but it is worse for us to resent it.

            It is very possible for us to appear righteous on the outside, and still have very wrong attitudes on the inside.  The devil does not care how we live outwardly—and it does not matter to him how many thieves, bandits, murderers, and false teachers there are—just so we are kept in the dark concerning God’s Truth and do not have the Christ-life within.

            To be prepared for eternal life, the old evil nature of self must be completely removed from our heart and the divine nature of Christ in its place—then we are in preparation for paradise—and not before.  Philippians 2:5 “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus.”

            A true Christian life is not possible unless Christ is in our heart.  We must be willing and then to actually give up our ways, so we can fully accept His ways.  At this point, the Holy Spirit comes into our heart, and inspires faith in us to obey the Word of God.

            Millions who profess faith in Christ think they have salvation without obeying New Testament teaching, but Jesus said Luke 4:4; Matthew 4:4, “‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God’” Deuteronomy 8:3. That means right here and right now in this life.

            Jesus followed the Word to set the example for us.  John said Matthew 3:14-15 “I need to be baptized by You, and are You coming to me?”  But Jesus answered and said to him, “Permit it to be so now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.”  It is necessary, He meant, to follow the commands of God in this Gospel Age.

            God had instructions written on how to live a spiritual life; how to enjoy health and protection—all by His power alone, without using any human remedy or worldly devices.  The New Testament includes teaching on the scriptural use of money; how to treat family members; what our attitude should be toward enemies; how to be successful at work, or success with anything.

            Everyone must truly accept Jesus Christ as their Savior, but being His true follower includes much more than just having a few prayers answered.  Being a true disciple of Christ means we truly trust on His atoning Blood sacrifice for health, healing, protection, provisions each day, and everything else mentioned in His Sermon on the Mount Matthew 5, 6, & 7.

            It is just as necessary to follow God’s financial plan as it is to accept His divine healing plan; it is just as necessary to meet wrongs done to us in a scriptural way, as it is to follow every other command of the New Testament—that is, if we want to be prepared and ready for His return.  To receive the gift of eternal life, it is just as necessary to be scriptural with our finances, as it is to be scriptural morally and with every other part of our life.

            God’s full Truth goes far deeper than the moral law.  It is absolutely necessary to be scriptural morally—and we will be morally pure, if we are abiding in Jesus.  We are abiding in Christ when we are putting His teaching into practice—every day, and by the inspiration of His Spirit.  We will enter paradise if Christ is truly enthroned in our heart.  John 15:4 “Abide in me, and I in you.”

            Any outwardly good thing we do, apart from the love of Christ in our heart, will prove to be a curse instead of a blessing, because outward righteousness is self-righteousness, and is worse than being an out-and-out sinner. 

            1 Corinthians 13:1-3 “Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I have become sounding brass or a clanging cymbal.  And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.  And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, but have not love, it profits me nothing.”

            When we truly give our life to God, He will enlighten us to our actual spiritual condition.  Jeremiah 17:10 “I, the Lord, search the heart, I test the mind, Even to give every man according to his ways, According to the fruit of his doings.”  He then informs us how to remedy that dreadful condition—trusting Him in faith to truly change our heart.  God also shows us what takes the place of that sin nature—it is His divine nature that is so much better and treats people so differently.

            Preparation for paradise means we are willing to give up our former ways of self forever, and to accept the way of the Word from that point—concerning every aspect of our life.  This includes divine healing and His plan of financial trust.  It is just as necessary to obey these commands to enter Paradise as it is to follow every other divine plan.

            If we are required to “live by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God,”—then we are also required to live by and obey the healing and financial plan of God.  1 John 4:20 “If someone says, ‘I love God,’ and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen, how can he love God whom he has not seen?”

            One command of God is just as important as the other—concerning our preparation for paradise.  If Jesus would return, and He does not find us following God’s financial and healing plan, He would not know us and we would not be ready—because Matthew 7:21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven.”


Top of Page