Boldly claiming your gift
Boldly claiming your gift by lcl
Joh 3:16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only-begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.
The above is one of the best known scriptures, however, it is sometime forgotten as one approaches what should be a time of victory when the reward is actually claimed. God never lies and He is promising those in Christ that they shall never see death. There is just a momentary transference, like moving into a new home.
Christ also promises that he keeps check on those who have accepted Him and that none shall ever be lost for any reason.
Joh 6:39 And this is the will of the Father who sent Me, that of all which He has given Me I should lose nothing but should raise it up again at the last day.
Joh 8:12 Then Jesus spoke again to them, saying, I am the Light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.
Joh 8:51 Truly, truly, I say to you, If a man keeps My Word, he shall never see death.
Again, Jesus makes a contract agreement that for all who strive to follow His guiding words, that they will not die. Yet, even Christians use the misnomer that they expect someday to die. This is not really accurate. Perhaps, we in this world, are just looking at one side of the story because most cannot see into Heaven while on earth. We know a lot about Heaven because the bible tells a lot about it, but we can’t see the actual transference happening without the spiritual eyes that must be required. Only a few, like Stephen described below, actually saw into Heaven before he was stoned. Scripture says that he just went to sleep during the stoning. This is really a more accurate way of describing his experience, for when he awoke he was with Christ and others he had known before. Even today, a few are blessed with temporary glimpses into what lies ahead. God still encourages some before their eternal graduation to Heaven. My mother-in-law while in-and-out of consciousness matter-of-factly asked “Who left the door open?” I asked, what door? She pointed to a blank section of wall at the foot of the bed and said “That door to heaven.” Soon after she lost consciousness and never re-awakened. She was content and ready to meet Jesus in person.
Another lady of faith had a vision of dancing with Jesus in Heaven. Not long after, I am sure her vision was fulfilled.
Act 7:60 And kneeling down, he (Stephen) cried with a loud voice, Lord, do not lay this sin to their charge. And when he had said this, he fell asleep.
In the scripture below, Jesus promises to give living water (the Holy Spirit) to those who accept Him as the son of god. This is the same spirit of god that then flows out of Christians doing good to a world in need of god’s help.
Joh 4:14 but whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst, but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.
Joh 10:10 The thief does not come except to steal and to kill and to destroy. I have come so that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.
This is another well known verse that may not be fully understood. Some may see only an earthly life filled with gods abundant grace. More accurately, that same grace continues on throughout eternity when one is in paradise and heaven. It never ceases. Once God gives a gift, it is never taken away.
Joh 10:11 I am the Good Shepherd. The Good Shepherd lays down His life for the sheep.
Rom 10:9 Because if you confess the Lord Jesus, and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you shall be saved.
Jesus was so completely dedicated to the will of his father and his purpose of coming to earth that he was willing to assume death and sin on himself so that others would not have to suffer the same fate. Romans 10:9 gives the only two requirements to be absolutely certain that one is saved from hell and a lake of fire. God did not say that we have to be perfect in ourselves. Far from it, we are still imperfect, but made acceptable because of the spiritual covering of Christ’s blood over us.
Below, Jesus assures us that he knows who are his, not because they are perfect, but because they are following Him. Think about it, even dumb sheep can still be protected by a caring shepherd when they are in the flock. That is the shepard’s responsibility.
Joh 10:27 My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me.
Joh 10:28 And I give to them eternal life, and they shall never ever perish, and not anyone shall pluck them out of My hand.
Jesus promises that nothing or no one, such as satan, can ever separate him and his sheep. He is the perfect shepherd!
Moreover, below, Jesus tells us that even God the Father loves those in Christ. His love is not based on any of our accomplishments, titles or personal strengths. It is just because we love His son and believe that He is god’s son.
Joh 16:27 for the Father Himself loves you, because you have loved Me and have believed that I came out from God.
Heb 4:16 Therefore let us come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.
1Jn 4:17 In this is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment, that as He is, so also we are in this world.
God explains that no one in Christ need fear when they come into His presence to receive grace when we most need it at judgement. At that time Christ’s covering is over us so that god only sees his son’s sacrifice for us. All is forgiven
When we are truly in love with god, and he loves us, there is no need of fear. Not in this world or the next. Therefore, we can be encouraged that our mind should be at peace. Just like an apprehensive groom or bride may be nervous before the wedding, but forgets all fears when they concentrate on the love that they have found and the hope for a wonderful future. Similarly, God is a god of love and peace and offers a world both things when they follow His instructions.
1Jn 4:18 There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear, because fear has torment. He who fears has not been perfected in love.
2Co 13:11 Finally, brothers, rejoice. Perfect yourselves; encourage yourselves; mind the same thing; be at peace. And the God of love and peace will be with you.
Heb 12:1 Therefore since we also are surrounded with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight and the sin which so easily besets us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,
Rom 13:8 Owe no one anything, except to love one another; for he who loves another has fulfilled the Law.
Truly, sins and satan’s lies can be bothersome if we forget the truth of god’s promises. God wants to lift our burdens, but we must keep our eyes focused on Him and His word to overcome doubts thrown at us by satan.
We can, like Paul near the end of earthly life, know that we are partnered with god’s son and can trust his word that we are already made acceptable by His son. We can rest and wait to claim our rewards promised by god
2Ti 4:7 I have fought the good fight, I have finished the course, I have kept the faith.