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SCRIPTURE - ST. JOHN 14 : 6 FEBRUARY, 2000
I am the way, the truth, and the life, no man comes to the Father, but by Me
SUBJECT - CAN SO MANY PEOPLE BE SO WRONG???
Last month, we looked at a subject, using the first part of the scripture above. This month I want to call your attention to the second part of this scripture, dealing with, the truth.
The truth. What is truth???
To us, it has different meanings.
One. It is what we perceive to be actual fact, concerning particular situations in our lives, that are undeniable. You and I were born on a certain day, and we are either male of female. Our parents, are our parents. We own certain things. We have kids, or maybe not. We have jobs, or maybe not. There is an endless list of things that, because of our experiences, we will say are fact (another name for truth)
Then, we have truth that is, shall we say, subject to change. By this I am talking about things that we thought were the truth, at one time, until something came along to let us know that what we thought was the truth, turned out not to be the fact. It was not necessarily considered to be an out and out lie, but rather something that, through experience, we believed to be truth, based on the facts that were present at that particular time.
This type of truth can radically change lives, some times for the worst but most times for the better.
Many children were raised by parents, that they thought were their actual parents, only later to find out that they were adopted. Others were led to believe that they were born on certain days, or in certain places, only to find out later, that was not the case. In life experiences, certain diseases, were thought to be caused by a lot of different things, that if a witch doctor, or medicine man, couldn't cure them, then you were just condemned to let the disease take its course, which usually meant, you died. Then came medical science, and the discovery of germs and bacteria. With the discovery of micro-organisms, the truths of the past, became nothing more than wrong thinking, that showed us, just how ignorant we were, back then.
Now, I could go on and on with all of the endless scenarios that could be played out, but that is not necessary. So truth, can either be a blessing, or a problem, depending on who it is affecting.
Most of us, frown on liars. You know, people that lie all the time. We don't like them because we can't believe them, even if they are telling the truth. Yet, in certain situations, we would rather accept a lie, or tell one, to avoid being hurt, or hurting someone.
We all have done it, I'm sure.
When your 5 year old child, brings home a picture they painted in school, and it is, what most children that age would make, a mess, we praise them for doing such a 'beautiful' job, and we stick it on the wall, to show them how proud we are of them. When they grow up, and look at the same painting, they laugh and say, 'I did that??? What did I say it was???' In a marriage, the wife goes out, buys a sewing machine, and sews her first dress, or your first shirt, or something for the kids, and it looks ridiculous. The husband, looks at it, and even though he doesn't like it, because it makes him cringe, he says, 'that's a good job you did, sweetheart.' Here, we see truth being subjective, because if someone else made the exact same thing, and tried to get us to buy it, we would tell them they need to throw it in the garbage. Or what about the first time the wife, or child, tries to cook, and burns the food?? Telling them the truth about it, just might cause trouble.
So you see, we are a complicated group of people that require, some variance in what we consider the truth, and how we deal with it.
In our subject verse, Jesus, is saying, 'I am the truth.' What does that mean?? It means that He, is the very embodiment of the pure, unadulterated, bare bones, uncompromised, truth. While some might say, that is what we need, let me remind you, that it is one thing, when His truth, is directed at someone else, and a whole lot different, when it is directed at you.
We can sit in church on Sunday morning, and listen to a preacher preach about all the evil that sister James is doing, and even come back to hear more about what others in the congregation are doing. We can stay in that church 30 years, knowing we are hearing the word of God, in other words, this is not gossip, and yet, the minute he starts 'ringing your bell', now you want to leave and find another church, or quit going all together.
A lot of you have been reading these messages for over 5 years, and you enjoy reading them. And I hope you will continue to read and enjoy them. However, in a bare bones way of bringing the truth, a lot of you might say, that I have gone to far, when I start 'knocking on your door.'
While truth can be a matter of opinion, or subjective, the truth that I am talking about this month, is one that is 'deadly serious' and will determine your destiny for eternity.
While many will accept correction on a variety of things, when it comes to their religion, and what they believe about God, that is where they draw the line. Just like Elvis Presley said, 'you can do or say anything you want to, about me, but lay off of my blue suede shoes.'
There are over 5 billion people in the world. And out of that number, less than 10 % are believers in Jesus Christ (Christians.) So that means that over 4.5 billion of us, have beliefs about our lives and creation, that totally ignore the bible and what it has to say about God, and Jesus Christ.
Now, according to the bible (God's revelation of Himself to mankind), God created the earth and everything in it. Then He created man, after His own image. That, is the truth, not according to me, but according to God. The bible then goes on to tell us that because of the disobedience of Adam, man, who at one time, walked with God, was now separated from Him. And because of this separation, man, began to lose touch with Him, and began to worship other gods. Not that there were any other gods, but rather, man began to make his own gods, and worship them. These other gods, were the beginning of all the other religions in the world. That's right. All other religions, are man made.
Well, God began a plan to bring man, back to Him. He wasn't going to force man to come back, but rather, He was going to give man, an offer he couldn't refuse. First, He gave us the rules, if you will, to live by. Then, He made the way for us to be forgiven, if we failed to live according to them, in other words, sinned, through Jesus Christ.
These rules, are something that are non negotiable, and never change. He let us know what He likes, and what He doesn't. Then He let us know the penalty of disobedience. That penalty is death, and hell.
One thing we need to know, is that God, does not have a whole lot of different ways for us to get back in right standing with Him. And, according to the bible, anyone that does not meet the criteria that is set forth in the bible, is going to go to hell, when they die, no ifs ands or buts about it. So, right off the bat, we have over 4.5 billion people going to hell when they die, unless they change over to Christ, in other words, get saved.
But, it doesn't stop there. Of the nearly 500 million that say they are Christians, about 75% of them, are not saved, at all. The only thing they are, are visitors in the House of God. Many of them feel that just being a member of a church, will get them in to Heaven. You couldn't be more wrong.
You see, we tend to take God, and His commandments, lightly. After all, it has been nearly 2000 years, and God has continued to overlook (we think), our wickedness. Surely, if He is real, He would have done something by now, we say. Especially if we read how He dealt with His people when they sinned against Him.
Some would say, 'see, God changed in the way He dealt with them and the way He does now, so He is not consistent in that area, why can't He change in His outlook on our sins today??'
Friend, God hasn't changed at all. He still hates sin, and will punish those that commit it, but when He decides to do it, is still up to Him. Whether He does it today, next week, next month, or years down the road, or at judgment, 'YOU WILL BE HELD ACCOUNTABLE, AND PAY THE PRICE FOR YOUR DISOBEDIENCE.'
All that He is doing right now, is giving us a little grace (time to realize our mistakes and to repent).
Now, back to the point. So, we see that most Christians, really are not saved, and therefore, are not Christians. And, when they die, no matter how good they are, or how faithful they were to their church, Jesus, who will judge them, will say in that day, 'Depart from Me, you workers of iniquity, I knew you not.' Can you imagine the look on their faces, when they realize that they are going to hell?? 'But, they have been in the church all their lives!!' It doesn't matter. "They are good Catholics!!' It doesn't matter. "They were good Baptists!!" Doesn't matter. But he was a pope, a bishop, a priest, a prophet!!! Doesn't matter. What matters is, are they saved???
Now some of you look at me mentioning the pope, and are saying, 'that did it. this is the last time I will read this garbage!!' But think about it. You are guilty of worshipping someone other that Jesus Christ, who is the only infallible person (perfect in all areas of life), to ever walk the face of this earth. And another thing, just because I didn't name your particular denomination, doesn't matter. GOD DOES NOT, AND I REPEAT, DOES NOT RECOGNIZE DENOMINATIONS, SIMPLY BECAUSE THEY ARE MAN-MADE TOOLS TO DIVIDE THE CHURCH. THEREFORE, THEY ARE OF THE DEVIL.
The Church (the body of Christ), is one body, with Him (Christ ) as the head. Now, as a body has many different members, each providing a different function, they all work together, so the body can function correctly. Denominations, make different bodies, each functioning for their own self edification, and gratification. That is why we see so many people, living right next to, let's say a Presbyterian church, but, because they are Baptists, they will go miles away, to a Baptist church.
Irrespective of what church you go to, the message should be the same, with the only difference being, the location, like the churches in the bible (Rome, Galatia, Thessalonica and such).
Once again, I could go on and on, with examples, but the truth is there. Most Catholics, Baptists, Presbyterians, Pentecostals, and others, are relying on their church membership to save them, and will end up in hell.
So, the answer is as clear as the nose on your face. Yes!!! Over 90 percent of all the people that have lived, are living, and going to live, on this earth, are wrong, dead wrong, and hell is their final stop.
Are you one of the most, or one of the few????
NEXT MONTH'S MESSAGE - THE LIFE
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