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            The true Christian life is not just going through the motions, or going through life with no real purpose—there is a purpose; and there is a goal; and there is a Heaven as a final home.  Eternity is way too long; and the lake of fire far too horrible to not think about the purpose and goal of life here on earth.  The purpose of God’s Truth, is to be free from Satan’s power.

            Jesus prayed John 17:17 “Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.” If we live by the Word and follow the teaching of the New Testament, we will live a life in faith, and we will know God personally, because we are really trusting Him for everything.  God is to be the supreme focus of our love and trust and adoration.

            Not many people have a correct knowledge of God’s Truth and plan for life.  Most think that if they do the best they can; live a reasonably good moral life; belong to a church; donate to charity; and do not deliberately harm others, they will go to Heaven—but that is not the entire truth of God’s plan, because sincerity and good intentions cannot save anyone.

            No matter how sincere and honest and moral we may be, it cannot change our inward nature.  Satan wants people to think they are okay just because of outward sincerity and moralityHis purpose is to deceive them, and to keep them in spiritual darkness, until it is too late to make the necessary changes for eternal life.

            The death of self; the removal of the sin nature; genuine faith in God, and freedom from trust in human plans or policies—is not known nor understood by the average Christian, because God is not the supreme object of their love.  They drift along in life with no real purpose, and finally end in the flames.

            That is why Jesus asked Luke 18:8 “When the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth?”  And it is why Jesus appeared to the apostle Paul, converted his heart, and commissioned him to take God’s Truth to the Gentiles—to Acts 26:18 “To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me.”

            Our being sanctified by faith in Jesus does not come automatically—it is a choice of the individual.  We must go beyond knowing the historical facts of the Bible—it is to really know God personally; to know what He can do; and then acting as if we really did believe that. 

            A faith that brings deliverance and victory over Satan’s influence in this life, is the only faith that counts—anything less is not faith.  It would be better to have no faith than to just have 2 Timothy 3:5 “a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof.”

            Jesus warned the Laodiceans—Revelation 3:15 “I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot.  So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth.”  Jesus wants us to be totally committed to Him.  We should totally accept God’s Truth—or we totally follow the world—be one or the other, He meant.

            The worst thing is to mix the world with the Truth.  It is awful to claim we believe in Jesus, and yet hold on to worldly ways and attitudes and rebellion.  Real repentance means really giving up worldly ideas, and plans of self.  After sincerely repenting, we can accept God’s plan of trust on Him for everything.

            There were idols in Bible times—when people were sick, they prayed to the idol—asking it to deliver them, or protect them.  Idolatry today just takes other forms—when people are sick, they ask the doctor for prescription medicine—it is idolatry of a different type.  Idols in the Bible were too big to swallow.

            If we were as moral as Job, or righteous as Cornelius—and yet would depend on anything or anyone else to deliver us from troubles, sickness, or problems we encounter, it would cancel any good about us.  The young man who wanted eternal life, was told that he lacked something—and that needed to be corrected if he wanted God’s kingdom.  The lack nullified the good of following some of the Commandments.

            The young man obeyed most, but he was not trusting God for moneyLuke 18:22 “Now when Jesus heard these things, he said unto him, Yet lackest thou one thing: sell all that thou hast, and distribute unto the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come, follow me.”  By saying the man lacked one thing, Jesus meant that the man lacked real faith.  He did not love God with all his heart, nor did he love his neighbor as himself.

            This lack of love for God and his neighbor was a critical lack, as evidenced by what Jesus told a Pharisee.  Matthew 22:36-40 “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.  This is the first and great commandment.  And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.  On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.”

            The Bible has one goal—that we take a right attitude toward God; toward His Word, and toward everyone else.  If we truly loved God with all our heart, we would always trust Him—even at the risk of our life.  If we really loved others, we would treat them as we want them to treat us.  Love for God in our heart compels us to do that for everyone.

            Jesus touched the idol in the young ruler’s heart.  This idol was just as serious as if the man bowed to a statue of Buddha—even though the man was attending a synagogue and was living an outward moral life.  Jesus revealed the idol Luke 18:22 “Yet lackest thou one thing: sell all that thou hast, and distribute unto the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come, follow me.”

            The man’s heart deceived him.  His life and choices showed that he did not really care about God, and he did not care about his fellowman.  The young ruler’s possessions meant everything to him.  When the idol he was depending on, and which he loved more than God, was touched, his true spiritual condition was revealed.

            All Jesus asked him to do, was transfer his bank account from earth to heaven, but he would not do that and walked away—proving that he did not love God with all his heart, and did not love his neighbor either, otherwise he would have shared what he had with them.

            Luke 18:24-25 “And when Jesus saw that he was very sorrowful, he said, How hardly shall they that have riches enter into the kingdom of God!  For it is easier for a camel to go through a needle's eye, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God.”

            That was difficult to accept, but it was the Truth from God.  26-27 “And they that heard it said, Who then can be saved?” to which Jesus responded, “The things which are impossible with men are possible with God.”  Matthew 19:26 “With God all things are possible.”

            Luke 18:28 “Then Peter said, Lo, we have left all, and followed thee.”  They had followed the advice Jesus gave to the young ruler—they had sold what they could depend on, gave it to the poor—placing their money in Heaven, and followed Jesus.

            29-30 “And he said unto them, Verily I say unto you, There is no man that hath left house, or parents, or brethren, or wife, or children, for the kingdom of God's sake, Who shall not receive manifold more in this present time, and in the world to come life everlasting.”

            Our repentance and surrender to God is for one purpose—to give up our self-will and to accept His divine will.  In doing this, we are enrolling ourselves in God’s training school, and asking Him to teach us how to get away from all human dependence, and to deliver us from every worthless idol—God will do that if we will let Him.

            Ezekiel 36:25-27 “Then will I sprinkle clean water upon you, and ye shall be clean: from all your filthiness, and from all your idols, will I cleanse you.  A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh.  And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them.”

            God not only delivers us from sin and idolatry, but He includes a thorough knowledge of Himself; a true relationship with Him; a perfect love for Him; and a total trust in His Word.  This results in being delivered out of life’s troubles and problems.  Abraham, Job, Joseph, and others were led away from human trust, and taken to a position of divine trust on God.

            The center of all sin is idolatry—trusting some thing instead of trusting God.  When that idol is removed, all other sins are removed with it—because all other sins are just fruits of idolatry.  When the idol is out of the way, real faith in God is possible.  Many think it is fanatical to trust God for money, for divine healing, or for anything else, but it is just common sense.

            Jesus said Matthew 28:18 “All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.”  To have such Power at our side, and not take advantage of it—that is fanaticism!  How foolish it is to pay someone to try to heal us, when they cannot heal themselves, and when we have the great God of Heaven by our side and ready to heal us for free—in the present moment.

            If we are depending on, or have it hidden in our heart to depend on, anything, anyone, any plan, pill, or procedure other than the living God for what we need in life—spiritually, physically,  financially, and every other faith issue, it is idolatry and must be corrected.

            If we will give our heart and life to God without compromise, He will teach us, and He will lead us to where we totally trust Him for everything.  It will result in a complete knowledge of God, and perfect love for Him. 

            Most importantly, an actual preparation for eternal life is included.  It will eventually prove that God has never changed; that He is no respecter of persons; and anything He did for anyone in the Bible, He will do for us today.  That is the purpose of God’s Truth.


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