New Age Or New Birth

We have a very clear choice to make as stated above.  Let us look first of all at what is meant by the New Age.
The New Age encompasses numerous belief systems, but can usually be summed up in the following way.  We are all part of a huge universal soul or cosmic soul that makes up both living organisms and inanimate ones.  What we say or do according to the New Age affects this cosmic soul, but what or who are you in essence praying to?  Since you are part of this universal soul you are essentially praying to yourself.  I am praying to myself to solve the myriad of problems around me.  Now, how many people do each of us know who has it all together and can solve the toughest problems on the earth?  If we are honest, we’ll admit none of us can fix even ourselves or even those closest to us much less the world.  My praying to or, if you will, through myself does little or no good.
Now, let’s look at the New Birth.  The premise behind the New Birth is that I am a sinner in need of help from someone outside of myself.  That help was sent by God from heaven in the form of baby Jesus.  Jesus grew up and willingly went to the cross to die for our sins.  Our faith in Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross connects us to Father God and releases the Holy Spirit into our lives.  It is that connection which also releases God’s grace and power to overcome whatever we are facing if we participate in staying connected through Bible reading, church attendance, Christian media, etc.  I am not praying to and/or through myself to change bad situations but praying in Jesus’ name to Father God who created the universe.
If you have not already done so, choose the New Birth and confess to God that you are a sinner in need of forgiveness.  By faith, accept Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross for your sins.

Banish Liars…

Recently, in two different directions I have had to deal with big time lying.  What happens when you confront a liar?  They just lie some more or say they don’t recall what they said or some such words.  Even in the face of two witnesses they can maintain their innocence.  So what do you do in a relationship that is going nowhere fast?

You can take the conversation to a higher authority and let them be the judge: in a business that may be a boss, in a family that may be a parent.  As a Christian we can even go before the throne of God in prayer and plead our case.  If Jesus is our Savior, he is also our attorney in heaven.  If our cause is just, we can trust the God of the universe to vindicate us and bring enduring justice.  This may not happen overnight, but trust that God has the final say.  Forgive the other person as God forgives each of us and leave it in God’s hands.

Is Heaven For Everyone?

I heard this story on Christian television awhile ago.  Suppose you lived in a middle class neighborhood with your family and someone you didn’t know came to your door and asked to live with you.  Would you let them in?  Because you have no idea who the person is and because you would want to protect your family, you would almost certainly close the door on them.  Similarly, God only lets people into heaven whom He knows.  Heaven is a perfect place and if God let people in who have not built a relationship with Him, then heaven would be anything but perfect.

But what does it mean to know God?  All of us have sinned according to the Bible and all of us deserve hell.  It is only because of what Jesus did on the cross to take away our sin that any of us have a hope of heaven if we believe in Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord.  Jesus made it very clear when He said, “No person comes to the Father(God) except through me.”  There is only one door into heaven, not numerous doors as the New Age belief system attempts to get us to believe.  Jesus is that door, and not just a mental assent of Him as Savior, but as the Lord of our life to whom we look for direction on a regular basis.

Eternity In Their Hearts

Recently, my father passed away.  Thankfully, I saw him in the hospital shortly before this happened.  While my younger brother was out asking the nurse a question, I brought up the subject of stepping off into eternity.  With a calm voice my dad said, “I am not afraid to die.”  There was no doubt in my mind that my dad was being truthful in his response, but how could he be so certain of his eternal future?  Let’s wait a moment to answer that question.

There’s a little boy that is related to me who woke up one morning and announced, “I had a dream last night of Jesus on a bridge, and he said that he is coming back soon.”  A few days later he again told his mother, “Don’t worry, Jesus is coming back soon with his angels.”  Little boys that young simply don’t make up such things.  Therefore, it must have happened just like he said.

Here’s one more example of the reality of eternity.  Quite a few years ago I was serving in the evangelism committee of a local church with an older lady.  She later became very ill and was close to death.  She was at home, where she wanted to be, with her children who later related this event to me.  Just before she died she was unconscious but suddenly sat up and began singing a hymn as if she was singing with a heavenly choir.  Then she passed away.

The reason my father could be so certain of his eternal future was because he had put his trust in a Savior.  Both the little boy and the older lady point us to Jesus as that Savior, not to a religious system, a denomination or a church.  Only Jesus can give us that certainty like my father had of where he will go when he dies.  If you would like to make sure you are headed to heaven, then ask Jesus to come into your heart, forgive you of your sins and be Lord of your life.

Life Source Or The Source Of Life

What we worship is extremely important because what we worship we eventually resemble.  Many today worship a life source which we all have.  It might also be labeled soul power.  If you set your mind or soul on a goal, you can accomplish great things.  However, can our own greatness or our own soulish desire bring about spiritual good?  For the most part no because we are leaving out the source of life.  We are simply building our own kingdom.

Jesus Christ is the source of life.  It is he who knows what can bear good fruit.  It is only Jesus who can reveal to us our true motives and aims.  It is Jesus who can lead and guide us through the Holy Spirit and the Bible to actually accomplish true lasting spiritual good.  Without Jesus we are living in the dark realm of the unredeemed soul.

God’s Way Or The World’s Way

Choices matter.  Our decisions here on earth have eternal consequences.  If you, like I have, have made Jesus Christ your Savior and Lord, then one day in heaven we will come before God for the white throne judgment.  At that time we will be rewarded for what we have done on earth.  Now, this isn’t some divine payday that lasts a limited time, but a reward that will go on for trillions and trillions of years.  When we make righteous choices instead of worldly one, that will be rewarded.  When we share the Gospel or give finances to further the Gospel, then that will be rewarded.  Jesus’ words saying, “Well done thou good and faithful servant,” are words I hope we all want to hear.  Choices matter!

Teachable or Intractable?

As we navigate the curves and straightaways of life we all have lessons to learn that God is trying to teach us. If we learn them quickly through following God’s biblical guidelines and praying ahead of time, we can usually avoid many of the more serious problems in life. However, if we cling to our stubborn ways and harden our hearts to God’s life lessons, then serious problems will almost certainly face us. Jonah is a great example of someone who ignored God’s directives and ended up in a disgusting place. Let’s come humbly and repentantly before God when our errors confront us and willingly do what Jesus, our Master and Savior, wants us to do. Such a route is by far the easiest in the long run.

Power Of The Sword

At times the Bible refers to the sword of the Lord as the word of God. As we pray God’s words in the Bible we release what God wants to happen in the spiritual realm. The power we have access to in this direction is amazing. Because of that fact many countries and leaders have attempted to keep the Bible out of the hands of people.

In the 1500s William Tyndale translated the Bible into the English of his day. For that act he was arrested, tried and executed. His dying prayer was that the eyes of the king of England would be opened. Perhaps, because of that prayer we have one of the most beloved Bible translations of all time, the King James Bible, which was an outgrowth of a change in policy by the king of England two years later.

Today, countries like Saudi Arabia and North Korea have outlawed the Bible. Twice while traveling into Saudi Arabia to teach I had my Bible and other Christian materials confiscated. I had to pay a stiff fine just to get the rest of my things out of customs.

Don’t take lightly the precious word of God we have in the Bible and our freedom to own a copy. It is a treasure for all of us to mine.

What You Focus On Most You Become

Proverbs in the Bible makes clear: “As a person thinks in his or her heart, so is he or she.” What you most focus on you will become. If our focus is positive, then what will eventually manifest will be something good and vice versa. If our focus is fear-based, then that fear will probably show up sooner or later. If our focus is faith-based on a promise in the Bible, we can trust that God, who does not lie, will bring it to pass. Of course, we must do our part in this to bring it to fruition. If we are believing for finances, for example, and are not out looking for a job or getting the proper training to get the job we want, then our focus is misguided. James in the New Testament states that “faith without works is dead”. This principle applies to every area of our life.

Unplugged

Spiritually speaking, there are two sides to the word unplugged, one positive and one negative. Let’s look at the down side first.

Unfortunately, many people have unplugged from God and the Bible. Instead of taking directions from the small, still voice of the Holy Spirit and the Word of God in the Bible they follow personal whims and fancies. What looks good in the natural realm catches their attention and off they go. Proverbs clearly delineates this approach to life: “There is a way that seems right to a person, but that way leads to death(spiritually).” There is a world of difference between following God’s Word and what appeals to our carnal mind.

The positive side of our title word unplugged begins when we decide to cut off from the multitudes of media-related connections that draw us away from God. If we are influencing our world and pointing others to God through our media-related connections, that is great. However, if our media connections are dragging us into Hollywood’s morass of immorality, then it is time to unplug.

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