The Christian Response to the World

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , , ,

Emergency Responders (also known as EMTs or paramedics) serve the purpose of responding to life-threatening circumstances. Daily throughout the world there are thousands of EMTs who risk their lives in order to save the lives of those who are in dire need. It is the job of a paramedic to deliver swift assistance despite any obstacles that may interrupt their mission.

Every paramedic that takes their job seriously understands the stakes involved in each assignment. It is critical for them to make it to their destination in a timely manner to avoid the death of a patient. There is, of course, no guarantee that said patient will survive the trip to the hospital, but it is the response and the understanding of the paramedic that creates an increased chance for survival. It is the duty of each responder to utilize their skill sets in addition to making the proper judgment call concerning a patient.

Today in our world, the subject of Christianity or being a Christian has taken on a different meaning than it has in years past. For example, according to a recent article published by CBN News, many Christians within the United States now feel threatened by those who are non-Christians. Essentially, the tide has turned towards marginalization against Christians worldwide.

While persecution against Christians isn’t a new concept, the increase in the negative pressures against Christ-followers has grown tremendously. However, even with the various threats and staunch opposition against Christians, there is still a response that every Christian should have toward the world. What is the Christian response to the world? Here are a few considerations:

Showing forth the Love of Jesus Christ – Often times, Christians are painted as hypocritical and extremely judgmental. However, the Christian’s response should be one of love towards those who are not in Christ. This does not mean that the truth should not be given to those who reject God. Ephesians 4:15 says that Christians are to speak the truth in love. Many see speaking God’s truth as being judgmental or harsh. This isn’t the accurate way to view the Christian’s response. Speaking the truth in love means to give each person who does not know Jesus Christ, an opportunity to hear the Good News. This means, sharing forth both the penalty that comes with sin (spiritual death and eternal damnation in Hell) and also the redemptive work of Jesus Christ which involves coming into the saving grace of God. We must love those who are in their sin without compromising the truth of God’s Word.

1 John 4:8 says,

(NKJV) “He who does not love does not know God, for God is love.”

Since God is love, then the Christian’s response to the world should be one of love because we who are in Christ are connected to God’s love because He is love. Loving those in the world means that we treat each person with kindness and showing forth a steady disposition of who God is through our conduct towards others. Galatians 6:10 says that we are to do good unto all men. We can only treat those in the world with love if we are abiding in Christ.

Standing for God’s Truth – In the current social climate, there are many examples of those who claim to be Christian and yet they have actively compromised what God’s Word says just to avoid ridicule from the world. The Bible makes it clear that we as Christians are to stand for God’s truth regardless of the cost.

1 Corinthians 16:13 says,

(NLT) “Be on guard. Stand firm in the faith. Be courageous. Be strong.”

To stand for God’s truth is to be unwavering in what God’s Word says. If God has stated in His Word that something such as lying, homosexuality, murder, stealing, and fornication is a sin, then regardless of what the world says, it is still a sin. The truth of God cannot be changed and Christians should not compromise just to appease the masses. To do so is to give in to false doctrine or Satan’s deception. The Apostle Paul gives Christians a mandate in Ephesians 4:14:

(NKJV) “that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting,”

Paul is essentially saying that the Christian must be spiritually mature so that we are not subdued or deceived by every doctrine or belief that appears before us. Just because the world has approved of “same-sex marriage” or attempting to redefine gender norms doesn’t mean that Christians are to agree with such standards. Our standard is none other than God’s Word because He has established the order that humans are to follow through a relationship with Jesus Christ. The response of a Christian is to stand firm in the faith and remain in a solid position against Satan’s attempt to delude and confuse.

Surrendering our lives unto God – One of the key differences between the world and the Christian is that of a life of submission unto God. Those in the world submit to their fleshly desires which comes from the adherence to Satan’s influence. However, the Christian response to the world is to live in submission unto God because of our love for Him. Jesus said in John 14:15, (ESV) “If you love me, you will keep my commandments.”

Obedience is the way that a Christian ought to live. This means that if God impresses upon your heart to share the Gospel with someone who is lost, then it is your duty to be obedient in that moment. Daily, our lives are to be under the authority of God by the words that we say, the things that we do, and the associations that we have in our lives. The world operates in recklessness because those without Christ are outside of the boundaries of restraint which comes from the Holy Spirit and His influence. A life that is yielded unto God is a life that will reap the benefit of a fruitful existence.

Separation from the world – The Bible makes it clear that the Christian is to be separated from the world. The Apostle Paul says it this way in 2 Corinthians 6 verses 14-18:

(ESV) “Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. For what partnership has righteousness with lawlessness? Or what fellowship has light with darkness? What accord has Christ with Belial? Or what portion does a believer share with an unbeliever? What agreement has the temple of God with idols? For we are the temple of the living God; as God said: I will make my dwelling among them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Therefore, go out from their midst, and be separate from them, says the Lord and touch no unclean thing; then I will welcome you, and I will be a father to you, and you shall be sons and daughters to me, says the Lord Almighty.”

Essentially, Paul is saying that Christians are not to form partnerships with those in darkness. Light and darkness cannot exist in the same vicinity. One has to overpower the other, which means that the two are altogether different. The deception of the world offers a merger between Christians and those who are not. However, Paul says that there must be a separation between those in darkness and those in the light of Christ. So, we as Christians are to live separated from the ways of this world and not to adopt what the world has approved of.

At the end of it all, Christians are meant to show forth God’s Spirit here on Earth. It is our duty to respond to the world with love, God’s truth, submission unto God, and separation from a sinful lifestyle. Just as an EMT responds to emergency situations, our job is the same. The world needs the Gospel of Jesus Christ. We must proclaim Gods truth and do so without changing the message of hope or failing to make a plea for those to come out of their sin.

Do you know Jesus Christ as your savior? God desires that you know Him in a relationship with Him through Christ. Accept this gift of life by believing that Jesus died on the cross and rose again. Turn from your sin and follow Jesus Christ to a destiny of life in abundance.

Daring Not to Conform to the World

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , , ,

“Truth or Dare?” is a game that many adolescents have played for centuries and continue to play today. Historically, this game is said to have its roots as early as the 1700’s during the era of ancient Greece. Since then, many children and even teens have participated in this game as a way to have fun with their peers.

The object of the game is for one person to ask another to tell an embarrassing truth, or to perform an embarrassing or dangerous dare. More so than not, when a dare is performed it can alter a person’s reputation due to embarrassment or it can prove to be risky in terms of doing something that could have consequences towards one’s health. (e.g. Jumping across a steep canyon)

To dare is to take a chance at ridicule from others because it is out of the norm. However, to conform to the consensus of the majority is to essentially lay down what one believes to be accepted by those going in the same direction. Just as in the game of Truth or Dare, a person is chided into doing something risky. However, the person who is asked, they understand that once they perform the act they are no longer operating in the status quo. Not to do the dare only suggests that they would rather remain in the crowd and settle for taking the easier pathway to avoid public scrutiny should the dare be performed.

The Apostle Paul encourages Christians against the very act of conforming to this world system. In Romans 12 verses 1-2 he says the following:

(NKJV) “I beseech you, therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.”

First, Paul broaches the subject of holiness in terms of being a living sacrifice unto God. What does it mean to be a living sacrifice? To be a living sacrifice, it means that a person has yielded their life and their lifestyle over to God through Jesus Christ. It is the crucifixion or death of one’s flesh or an end to the ways of sin. Paul makes it clear that a Christian should live in an acceptable way unto God.

We are living in a time that does not regard holiness or being a living sacrifice as a high priority. Rather, the way of the world is to live according to fleshly desires. As a result, anyone who attempts to deviate from what the world culture embraces is daring to be different but is also taking a risk for public ridicule.

The life of a Christian is one that is separated from the desires of this world and cleaves to the truth and holiness of God. Paul further encourages Christians not to be conformed to the world. This means, we who profess to be Christ-followers are not to agree with what the world dictates. The time that we are living in has made it so that there must be a clear stance for God’s truth. There is a clear line between God’s truth and Satan’s deception.

The question is, will you stand firm and be willing to go against the world culture? The destruction of the family unit through “gay marriage” and even the proposal of “gender identity” have become a part of the forefront of the assault on all that God calls Holy. This among other sins in our world have become commonplace, but yet Paul says in Romans 12 not to conform to the world.

The reason is because by conforming to the world you perpetuate the process of sowing to the flesh which reaps corruption according to Galatians 6:8. However, the gift of God is eternal life which means that you and I no longer have to reap corruption and spiritual death. Instead, Paul admonishes us to be renewed in our mind. This means we must have the mind of Jesus Christ and we must accept Him as Lord of our lives.

All around us, the world is continuing to erode both spiritually and socially. The culture has changed so drastically that sinfulness has created an unstable atmosphere that threatens the lives of all who want to live in peace. However, it is the peace of Jesus Christ that will provide safety for all who believe. Following the ways of the world is akin to jumping off of a cliff just because others are doing so.

Many are living in spiritual blindness because they are living without Christ. This is why Jesus said in John 18:12 that He is the light of the world. The world is already a dark place, but with Christ the illumination of one’s spiritual condition becomes apparent. It is at that moment that the recognition of a need for a savior is made evident. At the end of verse 2 in Romans 12, Paul finishes by stating that if you and I live with a renewed mind and do not conform to this world, that we will then prove the perfect and acceptable will of God.

It is not God’s will that you and I perish, but it is His will that we have everlasting life through Christ. The way that we do that is in a relationship with Jesus. We also accomplish this by being a living sacrifice on a daily basis. Holiness is a concept that is not addressed as much as it were in the past. The reason is because the attempt to merge Christianity and worldliness has taken root in the world around us.

However, God used the Apostle Paul and others in scripture to give us instructions for Holy living and obedience unto Jesus Christ. Without a standard then we as humans no longer have a measuring tool to discern what is right and wrong. It is dangerous when we as humans create our own standards that are outside of the will of God. In doing so, the erosion of the truth becomes an everyday occurrence which leads to deception. If one becomes deceived then Satan has a stronghold over the very life that God has given to us.

Will you dare to go against the world culture? Or will you follow the crowd toward destruction? Jesus Christ died on the cross and rose again so that you and I would not have to pay the penalty for sin. If you don’t know Jesus, you have an opportunity to know Him today. Accept Jesus as Lord and Savior and avoid conformity to this world system. The world is growing increasingly wicked day by day. You can avoid spiritual death by accepting the gift of God which is eternal life through Christ.

The Battle for Your Mind

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

ID-10034140The mind is a major part of the human body. While other body parts such as the legs, arms, eyes, and even ears serve an important purpose to our well-being, it is the mind that controls the body as a whole. Our movements are tied to the signals that are sent directly from the brain. Essentially, the brain sends messages throughout the body through what are called “neurons.”

Neurons are nerve cells that transmit nerve pulses in response to the brain’s directions. This is done through the nervous system. The brain’s responsibility is to send signals through each neuron which carries out the instructions to a specific body part. The end result is that of a body part that moves based on the brain’s original signal. Without brain functionality, the body itself would cease to exist because the body cannot receive proper instruction unless signals from the brain are transmitted without interference.

Spiritually speaking, all of us are engaged in a battle over our mind. On one hand, the Almighty God desires to reign and have spiritual control over our mind. On the other hand, Satan desires to corrupt our mind so that we follow him in rebellion and in sin. There is no in between as it relates to God or Satan. However, it is better for every human being to have the mind of Christ just as the Apostle Paul says in 1 Corinthians chapter 2 and verse 16.

In 1 Corinthians chapter 2, in verses 6-16, the Apostle Paul talks about spiritual wisdom and the revelation that comes from knowing God through the Holy Spirit. Paul says in verses 6-8:

(NKJV) “However, we speak wisdom among those who are mature, yet not the wisdom of this age, nor of the rulers of this age, who are coming to nothing. But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, the hidden wisdom which God ordained before the ages for our glory, which none of the rulers of this age knew; for had they known, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.”

The Apostle Paul is speaking to the Corinthians at the church of Corinth in this chapter. In this part of chapter 2, Paul says that he and those who were working with him in the ministry (e.g. Apollos) were speaking wisdom to those who were mature. In this case, Paul was talking about those who were spiritually mature in Christ. The wisdom that Paul says he was speaking with was that of God’s wisdom and not of the world’s wisdom.

Verse 9:

(NKJV) “But as it is written: “Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, Nor have entered into the heart of man The things which God has prepared for those who love Him.”

Paul continues in verse 10 by saying that God has revealed those things to us through His Spirit. “Those things” that Paul mentions are the deep things of God, which are only the spiritual aspects that can be found when you have a relationship with God. Basically, it is through the Holy Spirit and the presence of God that we as humans are able to discern and understand the things of the Spirit. Paul goes on in verse 12 to make a distinction between the Spirit of God and the spirit of the world:

(NKJV) “Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might know the things that have been freely given to us by God.”

Going back to the analogy of the brain, our body operates based on the instructions sent from the brain. It is what we know within our brain that enables our body to function. The same works in a spiritual sense. By knowing God through Jesus Christ, and operating in the Holy Spirit, our lives begin to be transformed into the image of God.

However, conversely, if we are operating in sin and following Satan then our lives take on the very attributes that come with evil intentions and wickedness. Paul said in verse 12 to those who were in Christ that they did not receive the spirit of the world but the Spirit who is from God. In doing so, Paul said that they would know the things freely given by God.

Verse 14:

(NKJV) “But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.”

If you look at the world around you today, much of our world has shown signs of chaos, confusion, and wicked behavior. The reason is because there are many who are living their lives outside of the will of God, which means that they are unable to accept the things that come from the Spirit of God. If you are in sin, then your are not readily able to see your wicked ways because, in order to be convicted of sinfulness, you must be influenced by the Holy Spirit.

Upon receiving Jesus Christ as your savior, the Holy Spirit then comes into your life and begins to manifest Himself by changing old habits and old mindsets. This is why Paul asks the question in verse 16, “For “who has known the mind of the Lord that he may instruct Him?”

In other words, when you are following Jesus, and you are living under the influence of the Holy Spirit you will receive instructions from the Lord. In doing so, you are then enabled to be obedient unto God because then you have as Paul says in the latter part of verse 16, “the mind of Christ.”

What does it mean to have the mind of Christ? If you look at the life of Jesus, His life was one of submission unto God. In John 6:38, Jesus said that He came down from Heaven not to do His own will but the will of His Father who is God. The reason why that is important is because Jesus was obedient to the will of God. He gave up His own will at the instruction of God the Father.

Paul encourages Christians in Philippians 2:5 to let the mind of Christ be in us. Basically, to have the mind of Christ is to walk in obedience to God by being influenced and led by the Holy Spirit. It is a constant battle over our mind because God wants control so that He can instruct us in His ways so that we can fulfill the purpose He has given to us. As mentioned before, Satan also wants control. However, his goal is to corrupt our mind so that we may sow to the flesh which then leads to eternal destruction.

Having a life that is postured in surrender unto God through Christ is what leads to a transformed and renewed mind according to Romans 12:2. The reason why having a renewed mind through Christ is so important is because daily you and I are bombarded by this world system. Since Satan is the ruler of this world, he wants to impose his deception upon us.

Many have become deceived into thinking that sin does not exist, but rather it is something to be embraced. The reason why this deception occurs is because many do not have the mind of Christ that comes through the Holy Spirit. The remedy for sin and a corrupted mind is Jesus Christ. When you have a relationship with Christ, you begin to shed the mindset that Satan gives to you, and you take on a renewed disposition.

Do you know Jesus in the pardon of your sins? If not, then you are operating out of a spirit that comes from Satan himself. He wants to destroy your soul and make your life one that lacks abundance. However, Jesus came, died on the cross and rose again so that you and I could know God through Jesus Christ. Allow Jesus to come into your heart, make Him Lord, and let Him change your mind through daily renewal.

Who is the Antichrist? (Part 2)

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , , , ,

According to dictionary.com, the definition of the term ‘globalization’ is “the act of globalizing, or extending to other or all parts of the world.” You and I are living in a globalized system and the concentration of integrating all nations with one another continues to take place daily. It has increased at such a rapid rate over several decades. Most would argue that globalization and erasing what were once barriers will create a stable and more open society.

However, the majority who are unaware of the scheme that has been set in motion by Satan, do not realize that globalization is merely a plot to bring the Antichrist into full power. As mentioned in the last blog post, the Antichrist will be a figure who will rise to world dominance according to Revelation chapter 13 and Daniel chapter 7. If you notice, over the last decade, we have heard terms that have been touted such as, ‘unity’, ‘new world order’, ‘global economy’ and ‘global society’.

Each of these terms are not just words spoken without meaning. These words are a part of a larger plan to bring this world system under one individual, who is the Antichrist. He will perpetuate a Satanic system for a season before he and Satan are utterly destroyed by God’s wrath according to 2 Thessalonians 2:8 which says:

(NLT) “Then the man of lawlessness will be revealed, but the Lord Jesus will kill him with the breath of his mouth and destroy him by the splendor of his coming.”

So, it is clear that Jesus Christ will ultimately reign in victory and triumph over the Antichrist and Satan. However, before that period comes the question is, how will the Antichrist assume power? What has to happen and what is happening that will lead to the shift in the world as it is known? The answer lies in a few aspects that are evident in scripture and in our daily lives.

Technology and its influence – Have you ever noticed that there has been a constant barrage of smartphone ads and an encouragement to purchase the latest technological gadget? Like it or not, technology has grafted itself into our daily lives. Many have become trapped in the constant presence of technology to the point that it has become an unknown addiction. The truth is, our world has become conditioned to believe that we must have it for survival.

In fact, there will come a day in which humanity will be forced to use technology because the world system will demand it. Think of the constant push to end cash transactions. Now, almost everything can be bought with a credit card, smartphone, or in the very near future an implanted chip. This Satanic system will use technology for the purposes of buying and selling products.

The Antichrist will be at the head of this new economy which is currently in place as we speak. Revelation chapter 13, verses 4-5 says the following:

(NLT) “They worshiped the dragon for giving the beast such power, and they also worshiped the beast. “Who is as great as the beast?” they exclaimed. “Who is able to fight against him?” Then the beast was allowed to speak great blasphemies against God. And he was given authority to do whatever he wanted for forty-two months.”

Notice that the Antichrist will be given authority. His authority will come from Satan who will empower him to do as he pleases for three and a half years. How will he be able to have this control? One major way is through technology. According to Revelation 13:17-18, at the time when the Antichrist will have power, those left behind will not be able to buy or sell without the mark of the beast. The number ‘666’ will be the world currency which means it will in some way be tied to technology. Much of how we buy things today is a subtle precursor to what will come later.

Global deception – If you look at our society today, you can see the wickedness and various changes that have occurred in the human lifestyle. Currently, there has been an open and rigorous debate over “same-sex marriage” and being “transgender”. Both of these issues seems to be the next phase that Satan is using in order to bring every person together under his world system. Anyone who goes against this latest change will be met with staunch opposition which will mean public and private ridicule. In some cases it may even mean imprisonment and or violence against those who don’t stand with the majority.

For the Christian, it should be clear that anything named as a sin in scripture is still a sin regardless of how the world tries to approve of it or make it seem harmless. Many have been deceived today into thinking that such lifestyles are not sinful but rather many believe that you are a bigot if you say otherwise. However, the Antichrist will use the same type of deception to fool the world and cause many to be destroyed.

Believe it or not, the Antichrist will make promises that will be fulfilled for a time. He will also perform miracles which according to Revelation 13:3, will create a massive following. Many will be deceived into thinking that the Antichrist is the one who can and will save a crumbling world system. However, those who worship the Antichrist will fall into destruction.

Taking advantage of political and social turmoil – If you were to turn on your television or even search the internet for your local and world news, you would find that our world is quite unstable. From Middle Eastern violence to threats of terrorism, to even constant violence existing between neighborhood citizens. The fact is, that in the last days the following things will happen according to 2 Timothy 3:2:

(NLT) “For people will love only themselves and their money. They will be boastful and proud, scoffing at God, disobedient to their parents, and ungrateful. They will consider nothing sacred.”

Just looking at each generation that comes forth, it seems that life and respect for others is no longer sacred. That is because, in the last days before Christ’s return, many would become as the Apostle Paul says in this scripture. As a result, political and economic chaos will ensue. We see constant fluctuation with our collective economies while at the same time terrorism remains to be a threat to human life.

All of these things we see daily are being used in order to create a global system that will be under Satan’s influence through the Antichrist. He will promise peace and provide answers to our world’s problems for a season. Then, for three and a half years he will cause chaos and destroy those who swear their allegiance to him. This is why organizations such as the U.N., NATO, and even world politicians are unable to solve the issues. The reason is because according to prophecy these things must happen which will lead to the Antichrist coming to power. Revelation 13:7 makes it clear that he will have power over every tribe, tongue, and nation.

After reading all of this, it sounds like bad news. Unfortunately, these things must and will happen. However, the good news is that Jesus Christ will reign supreme when all of this is over. At the end of the age, God will see to it that Satan and all of his followers will receive their due punishment. Evil will be eradicated and Satan’s system will be no more. Instead, the Kingdom of Heaven will be ruled by Jesus who will rule with an iron rod according to Revelation 19:15.

At the end of it all, Jesus will be King of Kings and Lord of Lord’s. Regardless of how things are in our world now, or how bad they will be later, God shall set up His Earthly kingdom and end the evil that Satan has put forth. The question is, do you know Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior? If you take a look at our world around us, things are getting worse.

The signs are pointing to the coming of Jesus Christ. This means, that the opportunity to choose Christ in a better environment is quickly passing. Choose Jesus today, so you can avoid having to make a life or death decision at the hands of the Antichrist. Repent of your sins and turn to Jesus Christ. God will honor you for choosing Him, and He will also reward you with everlasting life. Choose Jesus Christ.

Who is the Antichrist? (Part 1)

Tags

, , , , , , , , ,

World leaders and those who are considered to be highly influential have existed for thousands of years. Throughout history, many individuals both male and female have risen to a status that has left an indelible mark on the world stage. Individuals such as George Washington, Martin Luther King Jr, Mahatma Gandhi, and Mother Theresa achieved greatness that was not isolated to their own country but stretched into the world at large.

Some world leaders and well-known individuals were born into wealthy families. Others, arose out of obscurity only to find their place in history as recognizable to the vast majority. It is a person who assumes status as a world leader or an iconic figure who is remembered for the impact that they have on humanity and the world culture.

Spiritually speaking, there will be an individual who will also rise to critical acclaim. However, this individual will be unlike any other world leader that we have seen in our lifetime. This individual is described in Revelation chapter 13, and he will assume the role of “The Antichrist.” Who is the Antichrist and what does the Apostle John have to say about him in Revelation 13?

Before going into that chapter, it is important to know what the term “Antichrist” means. 1 John 2:22 says the following:

(NLT) “And who is a liar? Anyone who says that Jesus is not the Christ. Anyone who denies the Father and the Son is an antichrist.”

The Apostle John says in this verse, that the person who essentially denies that Jesus is the Christ, is an Antichrist. To be an Antichrist is to be against Christ. This is both a stance and an evil spirit that comes from Satan according to 1 John 4:3. However, while any person can assume the spirit of being an Antichrist, the Bible makes it clear that there will be one person who will embody this spirit that comes from Satan himself.

2 Thessalonians 2:3 calls this man “the man of lawlessness.” He is also known as “the man of sin” according to other translations. The point is that the Antichrist is an individual who will appear at a certain time in history. However, Revelation chapter 13 gives us a symbolic representation of who this man will be.

The Apostle John writes the book of Revelation in the format of what he sees in his visions from God. John is shown what is known as the “Tribulation period” which will be a time when chaos engulfs the world. This is also the time after the 2nd coming of Jesus Christ which is often referred to as “the rapture” in which all Christians who follow Christ will be taken out of the Earth to rest with God.

Those who reject Christ will be left to experience the challenging and destructive time that will occur during the tribulation period. The Apostle John starts in the first part of chapter 13 by stating that he sees a beast rising out of the sea.

Verse 1:

(NKJV) “Then I stood on the sand of the sea. And I saw a beast rising up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and on his horns ten crowns, and on his heads a blasphemous name.”

It is important to note the symbolism that John gives us from his vision. The first thing that he says is that he is standing on the sand of the sea and he sees a beast rising up out of the sea. This beast that John refers to is the Antichrist. But why is it important that he mentions the sea? Symbolically, a sea in scripture represents a mass of people. So, the Antichrist will rise out of humanity.

The seven heads represent seven kings or seven rulers within the world. John also sees these kings or heads with ten horns. The ten horns represent ten nations that are ruled by the seven kings. Historically, these kings and nations derive out of the Middle East and Europe.

In fact, Daniel chapter 7 also gives a similar prophecy that the Apostle John does.

Verses 23-24:

(NASB) “Thus, he said: ‘The fourth beast will be a fourth kingdom on the earth, which will be different from all the other kingdoms and will devour the whole earth and tread it down and crush it. As for the ten horns, out of this kingdom, ten kings will arise; and another will arise after them, and he will be different from the previous ones and will subdue three kings.”

Who is the fourth beast? It is none other than the Antichrist who will rise to power. The important thing to note is that these ten horns represent ten nations that are ruled by seven leaders or kings. Why does Daniel initially say that there were ten kings? As Daniel prophesies in verses 23-24, three of the kings or leaders were taken out of the equation leaving seven. Thus, as John points out in Revelation there are seven heads (leaders or kings) with ten horns (ten nations).

Why is this important for us to understand what the seven heads and ten horns represent? The reason is because the Antichrist or the beast will have control over the world system by taking power over the ten nations. The ten nations are critical because they represent nations that have economic and political influence in today’s time. It is believed by many Biblical scholars that these nations will indeed come from the Middle East and Eurpoe. Nations such as France, Spain, Egypt and Iran will be among them.

The point to be made is that the Antichrist will assume power over not only the ten nations that have political and economic influence but the Antichrist will control the entire world for a certain season. How do we know that this is true?

Daniel says in verse 23 that the beast will devour the entire earth and crush it. This means that once this individual who is the Antichrist rises to power, he will indeed be responsible for destroying the world by capturing the world system. The only way that it will be possible is through the power that Satan himself provides. Notice what John says in the latter part of verse 2 of chapter 13:

(NKJV) “The dragon gave him his power, his throne, and great authority.”

The dragon that John saw in his vision is none other than Satan. So, it is vitally important that you the reader understand that our current world system is being framed by Satan who will utilize the coming of the Antichrist to deceive and destroy. Satan’s goal is to increase his own kingdom through deception and through brute force. The Antichrist who has yet to be revealed here on Earth is simply waiting in the background for his cue.

In order for the Antichrist to appear, it will only mean that Jesus Christ has returned for His church. Believe it or not, the coming of Christ is sooner than we realize. While Jesus said that no man knows the day or the hour that Christ shall return, it is clear that based on the signs of the time that can be found in our world and throughout scripture that Jesus is soon to return.

The question is, are you eternally secured in Jesus Christ? If you don’t know Jesus as your personal Lord and savior, your time for redemption is right now. Delaying will only lead to your demise both eternally and even physically. The end of the world is yet upon us. The Antichrist will not only deceive many but he will destroy those who are left behind. Don’t delay your safety by rejecting Christ.

If you wait, you may be left behind after Christ returns only to be faced with losing your soul to Satan or losing your life in rejection of the Satanic system that is being cultivated at this very moment. While there is time, accept Christ and avoid the penalty of sin. Now is the time to come to Jesus Christ and have your sins forgiven.

The Unchanging Truth – Jesus Christ

Tags

, , , , , , , , ,

The world that we live in has always changed concerning the sociological perspective. Various lifestyles and belief systems have evolved over time to accommodate those who feel that they are on the fringes. There are laws that have been instituted in many nations that have become centered around “civil rights” which is proposed with the objective to include all people. With such changes and laws, new cultural norms have become imprinted upon most of the world.

For example, the mass movement of homosexuals seeking “equality” in terms of marriage rights has taken root over the past 5-7 years. There is also the issue of being transgender and wanting to be recognized as the gender that you choose rather than what you were born as. These issues have become the centerpiece of social adaptation and political influence. As a result, a sweeping majority worldwide have assimilated into such societal change. However, there is one fact that remains and that is, despite how much humanity itself changes, God’s truth and His Word does not change.

In the book of Hebrews chapter 13, there are a few key verses which point to the fact that the truth of Jesus Christ and God’s Word does not change.

Verses 7-9:

(NKJV) “Remember those who rule over you, who have spoken the word of God to you, whose faith follow, considering the outcome of their conduct. Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever. Do not be carried about with various and strange doctrines. For it is good that the heart be established by grace, not with foods which have not profited those who have been occupied with them.”

In this passage, the writer is speaking primarily to Palestinian Jews while also including the Hebrews of all connected churches in the body of Christ. In this passage, the writer is writing to encourage believers in the faith of Jesus Christ. Verse 7 begins by suggesting that the believers who were the target of this admonishment, should remember those who taught them in the faith.

The writer desires that believers remember the guidance of their spiritual leaders who were responsible for conveying the message of God’s Word. But notice a key point in this passage and that is in verse 8.

Verse 8 says, “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.” Why did the writer want believers in Christ to understand this point? When you look at our world, it is constantly changing as mentioned earlier in this blog post. Daily, humanity continues to grow in wickedness because for one, the End Times are upon us. Secondly, sinfulness has been accepted by our world which means that there is an openness to sin and those who choose to sin.

However, when the writer says that Jesus is the same yesterday, today, and forever, he is stating that the truth of Jesus does not change. Jesus Christ is the living Word which means that it is His Word that cannot and does not change. Jesus Christ was given the authority by God to be the truth. Jesus said in John 14:6 that He is the way, the truth, and the life.

What this means is that the truth of Christ does not and shall not change. The author of Hebrews makes that clear when he says that Jesus is the same forever in that, He does not change. It is the truth of Jesus Christ that will remain which means that all of the principles found in the Word of God also remain the same.

In the social climate that we live in, many have deemed the Bible to be either irrelevant or it has become flexible in what it says. Many have now bought into satan’s lies by assuming the position that God’s Word does not mean just what it says. In essence, many have taken scripture out of context, or they have ignored what God has to say about a subject altogether.

However, God’s Word does not change for any person. The truth of His Word which also encompasses Jesus Christ remains intact. Regardless of how the world portrays sin as acceptable and glamorous, the fact is that God is still a righteous judge. This means, that any nation that gives the stamp of approval on sin, it will be met with quick judgment which means destruction.

America and many nations around the world will eventually succumb to the wrath of God because of the disobedience and blatant sin of humanity. One cannot sin and expect to come away without any consequences. It is the job of every Christian to stand firm in the faith as 1 Corinthians 16:13 says to do.

Also, notice, that the writer of Hebrews says in verse 9, not to give in or be carried about by strange doctrine. This means not to be caught up in the wind and influence of teachings that are false. What our society has suggested and continues to impose is a bevy of falsehoods which are completely against the Word of God.

Since God’s Word is the basis for absolute truth, then anything that we as humans attempt to come up with does not meet the standard of truth. Relativism is what our society pushes frequently. At the same time, by imposing relativism, there no longer becomes a basis for absolute truth. This, in turn, means that the line between right and wrong is erased. It becomes a personal conviction of right and wrong, which no longer places God as the standard for all things good or evil.

So, the overall message to every believer is not to be enticed and captured by the changing tide of our time. Whether it is the embracing of homosexuality, murder, lying, stealing, adultery, fornication, or any other sin, the Christian is to remain rooted and grounded in Gods Word. The truth of God will always stand because it is the very thing that shall never perish.

Jesus said in Matthew 24:35, that Heaven and Earth shall pass away, but His words shall not pass away. This means that regardless of what comes and goes, it is the truth of Jesus Christ that will never end. It doesn’t matter what becomes “the law of the land” or what matter of persecution shall come to the body of Christ. We who are the chosen of God and those who have been called out of darkness must stand for God’s truth.

If you are reading this and you don’t know Jesus Christ in the pardon of your sins, then you are in darkness. The Bible says in Romans 6:23 that the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life. If you don’t know Jesus, you have an opportunity to accept the sacrifice of Christ on the cross for you. He came to die and be resurrected so that you could be saved from destruction. Accept Jesus Christ, and obtain salvation. To those who are in Christ, remain steadfast in the faith and know God’s truth rather than accepting the lies of the world.

Confusion that Comes When Idolatry Is Present

Tags

, , , , , , , ,

In America, 2016 is an election year for the office of the President of the United States. Just as each election cycle surfaces, so does the 24-hour media coverage. Daily, there are news reports concerning each candidate’s polling numbers in addition to the campaign rhetoric. While America prepares to vote for the next President, the world is also watching to see who will be elected as the next leader of the free world.

In this election, there has been a focus on one particular candidate and his name is ‘Donald Trump.’ Mr. Trump is currently running for the nomination of the Republican party. He has also gained a massive amount of support since he began running for President in 2015.

Donald Trump is known for being one of the wealthiest businessmen in the world, and he is also known for his outrageous statements and the reality show that he starred in called ‘The Apprentice.’ However, what seems to keep many Americans and those in other countries dumbfounded is how it is that someone who is flagrant, uncouth, and an instigator, able to garner so much attention?

Many voters throughout various states have now found themselves supporting Donald Trump despite his inflammatory rhetoric. The question is, how is such a thing possible when such leadership would be bound to fail from the beginning? The answer lies in the word ‘idolatry.’

The Bible is very clear concerning idolatry and the confusion that it brings when individuals are open to a lifestyle that is separate from God. It is the rejection of God and His standards that opens the door to deception and confusion among any group of people. The proof in this is found in the book of Isaiah chapter 44.

In the beginning of this chapter, in verses 1-5, the Lord is speaking and pronouncing His blessings over the people of Israel. God makes it clear in these verses that He has chosen Israel and that He will bring blessings to Israel’s descendants.

Verse 3:

(NKJV) “For I will pour water on him who is thirsty, And floods on the dry ground; I will pour My Spirit on your descendants, And My blessing on your offspring;”

It was God’s promise that the people of Israel would be blessed. In verses 6-8, God makes further proclamations that only He alone is God which means that there is no other God greater than He. So, in the first part of this chapter, we can see that God has chosen Israel and that He alone is worthy of the praise and worship that humanity can give Him.

At the same time, God gives the people of Israel a snapshot into what can happen when He is no longer the focus of worship, but rather when idolatry begins to take place.

Verse 9:

(NKJV) “Those who make an image, all of them are useless, And their precious things shall not profit; They are their own witnesses; They neither see nor know, that they may be ashamed.”

First notice, that God declares that the idols that are worshiped are useless in their being. It is a waste of time to worship another god because it profits absolutely nothing. God also says in verse 9, that “they neither see nor know, that they may be ashamed.” This means, that there has been a cloud of delusion placed over anyone who chooses idol worship over God.

Verse 10:

(NKJV) “Who would form a god or mold an image that profits him nothing?”

In our world today, we see many examples of idol worship which often times includes self-worship. The question that God asks is, why would someone commit idolatry only to find that it is worthless? The same is happening today. There are so many who chase after fame, money, sex, large homes, and even self-gratification only to find that they are empty on the inside. This is one reason why America and many nations in our world are experiencing a lack of fulfillment and inner turmoil within.

In verses 11-16, God continues by making it known that when idolatry is committed, there is a great deal of work that is spent making and worshiping a false god only to find that it profits nothing. In these verses God gives us the imagery of someone who takes the time to build an idol and in verse 17, this same person begins to worship it.

(NKJV) “And the rest of it he makes into a god, His carved image. He falls down before it and worships it, Prays to it and says,“Deliver me, for you are my god!”

How often do we see idol worship today in the nation that we live in? Many seek the answers to life’s problems from other sources rather than seeking and worshiping God. Even in this election season in America, many are seeking the answers from each politician rather than understanding that it is God’s desire that we seek Him.

In verses 18-20, we can see just what happens when idolatry is allowed to flourish:

(NKJV) “They do not know nor understand; For He has shut their eyes so that they cannot see, And their hearts, so that they cannot understand. And no one considers in his heart, Nor is there knowledge nor understanding to say, “I have burned half of it in the fire, Yes, I have also baked bread on its coals; I have roasted meat and eaten it; And shall I make the rest of it an abomination? Shall I fall down before a block of wood?” He feeds on ashes; A deceived heart has turned him aside; And he cannot deliver his soul, Nor say, “Is there not a lie in my right hand?”

Notice that in verse 18, God says that they who are worshiping idols do not understand. God says that He has shut their eyes so they cannot see and their hearts so they cannot understand. A major reason why we see many accepting what would normally be considered foolish is because God has blinded the eyes of those who have rejected Him. He has also allowed their hearts to be darkened so that they can no longer understand that what they are doing is foolish.

In verse 19, God says that those who worship idols no longer have the understanding to realize that what they have created is worthless but yet they continue to worship only to find that they are consuming the empty works of their own hands. Finally, in verse 20, God says that it is the heart that is deceived that is turned aside. As a result, anyone who is deceived is unable to save their own soul.

This is why we see confusion running rampant in our world. What seems like it would not make sense logically, many now seem to approve of what was once deemed unacceptable. It is because of idolatry and the sinfulness of humanity that we see a massive delusion that has taken place. However, there is a remedy for this.

Jesus Christ was born to die on the cross for the sins of the world. As long as God is rejected in the heart of man, then confusion and deception lead to a life that is spent living in sin. However, Christ died and was resurrected so that you and I may have life and life more abundantly. The blood of Jesus breaks the power that sin has over humanity but it is a conscious decision to accept this gift of life.

Will you accept Jesus’ sacrifice and make Him your Lord and savior? Until you do, you will find that your life will be empty and lacking meaning. God desires that you have life abundantly and it can only be done through Christ. Accept the gift that God has given by giving your life to Jesus in repentance and acceptance of His sacrifice on the cross.

Multiplication – By God’s Design

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , ,

Simple mathematics encompasses the understanding of addition and subtraction. For example, 2+2 = 4 and 3-1 = 2. In arithmetic, there is also the element of multiplication. 9×9 = 81 or 4×3 = 12. When two or more numbers are multiplied they increase at a higher number compared to simply adding each number. To multiply is to produce greater numbers based on the values that are given. In mathematics, it is better to multiply than to add numbers if you want to achieve a greater result. This is simply because it would take longer to add than to multiply.

Multiplication isn’t just a mathematical concept but it is God’s original plan concerning humanity. In the book of Genesis chapter 1, God gives the very first man and woman their task which is stated as follows:

Verse 28:

(KJV) “And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.”

The key words in this verse are “Be fruitful, and multiply.” Why did God give Adam and Eve this instruction? If you look at verse 27 of this same chapter, it will shed light on what God desired:

Verse 27:

“So God created man in his own image, in the image of God, created he him; male and female created he them.”

The key point of verse 27 is that God created humanity in His image. Verse 27 and verse 28 took place before sin entered into the world through Adam and Eve’s disobedience. However, God created you and I, to be in the likeness of His own image. It was because of sin that the image of God in humanity became distorted which gave humanity a distorted image of ourselves and of who God is.

At the same time, the reason why God gave Adam and Eve the task to be fruitful and multiply was because God designed reproduction as His plan to reproduce His image and glory in the Earth. Many today and even in times past have had children for various reasons. Some have children because they desire to see a legacy lived on from their own offspring. Others have children because they want to transfer love to the next generation.

There are even those who desire to see themselves in their children as they are born and as they grow. However, God isn’t concerned with these reasons as much because none of these explanations have to do with reproducing God’s image in the Earth. Having children and even desiring to have them is a noble adventure, but it is God’s plan for the Earth to be filled with the image of Himself.

How does this happen? Here are a couple considerations:

1. There must be a spiritual rebirth through Jesus Christ – For humanity to perpetuate the image of God, the acceptance of Christ as Lord and Savior is the first step. Whether you have children or not, the image of God can be reproduced in the Earth. It just so happens that one of those ways is through the reproduction that comes from a male and a female. By God’s design, it is the standard for a man and a woman to be joined in marriage and to have offspring.

Of course, it is a known fact that not everyone can have children because there may be medical problems that do not allow for childbearing. However, God does not just use the birth of children for perpetuating His image. Discipleship is also the concept that God has provided to Christians. Matthew 28:19 says:

(NLT) “Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.”

Jesus was talking to His own Disciples in this verse. God desires that we as humans know Him, but to do so, we must accept Jesus Christ. We must be born again through the Spirit (John 3:1-12).

2. Spreading the Gospel – The Gospel simply means, “Good News.” What is the Good News? The Good News is that Jesus Christ came to die on the cross for the sins of humanity. This means, that we now have a way of escape from the destruction that comes from living in sin. Christ’s atoning sacrifice gives you and I the opportunity to be redeemed from sin and to avoid Hell.

Jesus gives His disciples what is known as “The Great Commission.” This is stated in Mark 16:15:

“And then he told them, “Go into all the world and preach the Good News to everyone.”

Multiplication comes when those who have accepted Christ, begin to share the Gospel to all people. It is through the spreading of the Gospel that reproduction of God’s image in the Earth can take place. It is passing on the remedy of Jesus Christ to someone who is suffering from the disease of sin. Once the person who is in sin accepts the remedy, then they can pass it on to someone else.

It should also be noted that satan has a plan for multiplication as well. His method is to spread sinfulness and evil to as many as He can. This is so he can stop the process of regeneration as it relates to humanity being reconciled to God through Christ. However, the key is understanding that God desires that we come to the knowledge of His love through Jesus Christ.

The first step is to accept Jesus as your Lord and Savior. Do you know Jesus in the pardon of your sins? You have a tremendous opportunity to take part in the multiplication of God’s image in the Earth. By accepting Christ, you then have the honor of spreading the Gospel to someone else who is lost in sin. It is God’s design to not only multiply His image in the Earth but to reclaim humanity through Jesus Christ. Take part in this process by believing in your heart that Jesus is Lord, and be used to spread the Good News to the world.

Do You Know Jesus?

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , , ,

Most of us know what it is like to have a friendship or even a romantic relationship as it relates to daily personal life. It is the connection to one or more individuals that creates a sense of acceptance, emotional attachment, and intimacy. Only those who are closest to you, have a place reserved in your life as opposed to those who are only acquaintances who would be left standing on the outskirts.

It is the relationship and connection with those who are closely held to your heart, that creates a significant bond that is difficult to shatter under negative circumstances. In such relationships that are built, there is a commonality in addition to understanding one another. However, if one does not maintain a steady connection with those who are deemed important, there is a great potential for a loss of said connection which means the relationship no longer thrives.

As a result, any relationship whether familial, friendly, or romantic begins to suffer from a breakdown which can ultimately lead to a relational demise. This means that in order for one to have relationships that are built to thrive, there must be a continual connection and growth in each interpersonal relationship.

In the book of John chapter 8, the principle of knowing God through Jesus Christ is shown in verses 12 – 19. Jesus is speaking to Pharisees who were religious individuals who believed that life was better lived according to the Mosaic law rather than deviating from the law. Throughout scripture, the Pharisees can be seen challenging Jesus on various issues, however, Jesus would always bring them back into accountability and God’s truth.

Verses 12-13 in John chapter 8 says the following:

(NLV) “Jesus spoke to all the people, saying, “I am the Light of the world. Anyone who follows Me will not walk in darkness. He will have the Light of Life.”The proud religious law-keepers said to Him, “You are talking about Yourself. What You say about Yourself is not true.”

In verse 13, the Pharisees challenge Jesus regarding His statement that He is the Light of the world. One reason as to why the Pharisees misunderstood and believed Jesus to be a liar is because they were so caught up in their allegiance to the Mosaic law. The scripture in this translation refers to the Pharisees as “proud religious law-keepers.” This suggests that the Pharisees were arrogant and they bought into the lie that religion was superior to following the words of Christ.

Even in our world today, there are many who have placed much emphasis on worldly knowledge and human wisdom that there isn’t a reverence for the things of God. There are religious zealots who proclaim that what they believe is the truth, however, anything that stands outside of the truth of Jesus Christ is following in step with satan’s deceptions. The proof of this is that Jesus says in verse 12 that anyone who follows Him will not walk in darkness.

This means, that without Christ one cannot live in this life and navigate successfully because only Jesus is the light by which we have guidance to the path that God desires for humanity. Regardless of other religions or even those whose choose not to believe, Jesus Christ is the only way, the only truth, and the only way to life. (John 14:6)

Jesus continues in the next few verses:

Verses 14-17:

(NLV) “Jesus said, Even if I speak of Myself, what I am saying is true. I know where I came from and where I am going. You do not know where I came from or where I am going. You say as a man would say if people are guilty or not guilty. I am not saying anyone is guilty. But even if I did, it would be true. I am not alone. The Father Who sent Me is with Me. It is written in your Law that when two men agree about something, it proves it is true. I speak for Myself and the Father Who sent Me speaks for Me.”

Essentially, Jesus further states to the Pharisees that He is speaking the truth, but His truth is validated by God Almighty. Jesus says that He speaks for Himself, but it is God the Father who sent Jesus and speaks for Him. This makes it so that Jesus’ words are the final authority because it is God who has given Him the authority to speak with such truth.

However, notice that Jesus says in verse 14 that the Pharisees do not know where Jesus came from or where He is going. Verse 19 says:

(NLV) “The proud religious law-keepers asked Him, “Where is Your Father?” Jesus said, “You do not know Me or My Father. If you had known Me, you would have known My Father also.”

Jesus’ words make it clear that the Pharisees did not have a relationship with Jesus Christ. As John 14:6 states, Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life. Without a relationship with Jesus, there isn’t a way to have a relationship with God the Father. The Pharisees did not know Christ in obedience or in following Him, which is why they never understood Christ’s words. If they were followers of Christ, then they would have known God for themselves.

The question that all of us must answer is whether or not, we know Jesus for ourselves. With all of the deception that exists in our world, it is very easy to think that one can have true peace, joy and understand love without knowing Jesus Christ. It is Christ who gives us the opportunity to know God because Christ is the only way to God.

The world we live in promotes all inclusive religion. One can worship Buddha or Allah and it still lead back to the same source. However, this notion is false and it is one of the many lies that satan uses to distort the clarity that God offers. Without having a relationship with Jesus Christ, then there is a loss in connection to God the Father.

God desires to know each human being in intimacy. Sin is what separates us from having an unhindered relationship with God. It was God’s plan that Jesus Christ would die on the cross as the atonement for the world’s sins. Without the shedding of Christ blood, there would be no other way to remove the stain of sin. There would also be a relational gap between humanity and God.

This means that because of Christ, we have an opportunity to know God. However, it takes a decision to know God through Jesus Christ. How do you do this? The first step is to come to the acknowledgement that you are a sinner and need a savior. If you don’t know Jesus Christ in the pardon of your sins, then you are living in sin. Once you have acknowledged that you are a sinner, and you have repented from your sin and turned away from your sin, it begins the process of a relationship with Christ.

For those of us who are in Christ, we must seek God daily through prayer, reading scripture, and worship. To know God is to have an ongoing and intimate relationship with Christ. It doesn’t just happen overnight as some may believe. Just like any human relationship, it takes time to experience growth and connection. The more you spend time with God, the more you begin to know Him and the more your life exemplifies who God is.

It is only through Christ that we are able to show love to a dying world, and to give sinners an opportunity the receive the invitation to know God through Christ. Regardless of what our world promotes today, the overarching truth is that Jesus is the only way to have everlasting life. He is the only way to know what love is, and how to love others. Do you know Jesus?

 

 

Start 2016 by Committing Your Ways to the Lord

Tags

, , , , , , ,

2015 has now passed and it is in the book of history. Today is the beginning of a brand new year for all of us who were given an opportunity to see the turn of another season in life. This is a time in which many will start the year by establishing New Year’s resolutions. For some it may mean losing weight, becoming fiscally responsible, or it may mean accomplishing other personal goals that were not achieved in 2015.

However, in the midst of the busyness of this new year, it is important for all of us to understand that the best way to start and to finish each year is to commit our ways unto the Lord. This is a message for both the Christian and the non-Christian. For those of us who are in Christ, the Bible makes it clear throughout many scriptures that our focus should be to seek the Lord in all that we do. This, in turn, means that our lifestyle will be pleasing unto Him as we live and walk by the Holy Spirit.

For those of you who are not in Christ, this is an open invitation for you to be redeemed through the blood of Jesus Christ by simply believing in your heart that Jesus is Lord. It also means that you must repent of your sins which begins the process of transforming your life from condemnation to redemption. The key is understanding that without Christ, your life is destined for destruction. However, Jesus died so that you would have life and have it abundantly.

The scripture that we should all focus on for daily guidance is that of Proverbs 16:3 which says:

(NLT) “Commit your actions to the LORD, and your plans will succeed.”

There are many who will have their own plans and goals for the new year, but the writer who is King Solomon encourages the reader to commit their ways or actions to the Lord. Why does King Solomon admonish us to do this? As the second part of verse 3 says, your plans will succeed.

The world often defines success based on monetary gain or even having material wealth. While there is nothing inherently wrong with having wealth, that does not define success in the eyes of God. What God is concerned with is whether or not you and I have surrendered our lives unto Him. Solomon says to commit your works or actions to the Lord.

By committing your actions to the Lord, you are first acknowledging God as Lord. This means He has free reign in your life. Many in our world today have forsaken God and traded in obedience for an aversion to secular humanism which is rooted in pride. By nature, we are prideful because of being born into sin.

However, the opposite of pride is humility which means to place yourself in a position where you are no longer in control. In this case, to be humbled under the hand of God is to admit that you need Him to succeed in this life. It also means that you are willing to act in submission unto God by choosing His ways over your own ways.

To commit your actions unto the Lord is to also reject sin regardless of the form it comes in. When you and I are in sin, we are operating in rebellion against God which means we are unable to commit our ways unto the Lord. However, repenting and turning away from your sin, you are then able to experience the fullness of God and everything that He has planned for you.

Proverbs 3:6 says:

(ESV) “In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.”

What God desires from each of us is submission and acknowledgement. However, to do so, a choice must be made. In this coming year and every single day, there will be challenges as well as personal victories. Throughout our lives, God wants to have dominion so that He can show us the path that we should take. Having goals that you desire to accomplish is admirable.

At the same time, our goals should be aligned with God’s will so that He can direct us as we journey through life. 2015 was a year in which our world witnessed many tragedies at the hands of terrorists and criminals. It was a year that showed the very evil that satan represents. However, the safest place that anyone can be is in God through Jesus Christ.

The fact is that 2016 may very well show forth more violence and evil because according to Matthew chapter 24, we are living, in the End Times. Such things that include Earthquakes, violence, wars and rumors of wars must take place. Prophetically, the issues we see in our world must occur for Jesus Christ to return for His church.

However, it is the person whose life is anchored in Christ and who has decided to commit their actions unto the Lord who will benefit. God desires to know you and me through Jesus Christ. It is up to you to decide whether or not you will surrender your life. Surrender is never easy because it involves the destruction of your pride.

Today is the 1st day of 2016 which means all of us have an opportunity to start at the beginning. However, will you choose to do so without the guidance of God? In such dangerous times, no one can afford to live without Jesus Christ. To do so is taking a chance and that chance will ultimately lead to destruction.

Let your new year start off with Jesus at the center of your life. New Year’s resolutions come and go, however, a life that starts each year and each day with God at the helm is a life that is destined for success. You don’t have to live each day without the presence and guidance of God. Jesus died on the cross to save the world, which means the invitation is open to whoever desires.

Do you know Jesus in the pardon of your sins? Don’t  enter  this new year without accepting Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. Our world continues to erode both morally and spiritually, however, the answer to the woes of this world is Jesus Christ. Let your life be committed to God which will always result in success. May 2016 not only be a happy new year but also a new year that involves submission and commitment to God and His will for your life.