All Scripture quotations are from the Authorized King James Version of the Bible unless otherwise indicated.

August 23, 2012



GOD

is

My

FATHER





Published by:

HANDS FOR JESUS







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Introduction



When Jesus came preaching the Gospel of the Kingdom of God, He said "He was the Son of God, making God His Father." This caused a lot of problems for the Jewish leaders, who believed according to their law. In Matthew 23:9 Jesus said to His disciples, "And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven." It is important that we take notice of who Jesus was speaking to when He made certain statements. Jesus did not say that God was everyone's Father. Only those who truly believe on Jesus, and the Father who sent Jesus into this world.

Christians are those who are abiding in Christ. Do Christians understand what Jesus is telling us? Is God our true Father? Are we truly "children of God?" What is God doing in our life that makes us "children of God?"

These and many other questions are answered in the Scriptures, and Christians should know the answer to every question concerning their "relationship with their Father."

The Scriptures tell us, "with God all things are possible" (Matt. 19:26). It is important that we read carefully what it says in Matthew 19:26. It says, "with God," meaning that it is not all God, but God and man working together. Is this true? If we work with God are all things possible? If we believe it, we could experience many things that we never even thought could happen in our lives.

Jesus made another statement in Mark 9:23, saying, "If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth." Jesus said, "If thou canst believe," meaning "If you can believe." If we believe this, then we should be living differently than most people in this world.

As we study the four gospels, we see Jesus was doing many things that should be happening today, for Jesus said in John 14:12, "Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father." In John 14:12, Jesus said, "...He that believeth on me...," believeth means "is believing at the present time." Many say they believed at one time. But they must be still believing (present tense, not past tense). How many people are experiencing "greater works" than Jesus did? One of the reason's Christians are not walking in the power that Jesus walked in is because they are not "doers of the Word, they are hearers only" (James 1:22). They once believed, but now they are no longer believing. Their believing is a past tense operation, not a present tense operation.

It seems what the Scriptures say, and what Christians see and experience are not always the same. Here and there, now and then, we hear of something that looks like it could be God. But, why aren't things happening more often? It's been almost two thousand years since Jesus finished the work He came to do. He went to be with the Father and said "we should continue to do the works He was doing" (Matt. 28:18-20, Mark 16:17,18, John 12:14).

Was Jesus only speaking of those few that walked with Him for three and one-half years? Or was He speaking to Christians everywhere? Many say, Jesus was speaking to all who will believe, especially those who say they are born again Christians. Is it possible that Christians do not know what God said in His Word? Are some Christians blinded by Satan, "the god of this world" and walking in darkness?

Do Christians truly know "who they are in Christ?" Or are they being "tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine" (Eph. 4:14)? Christians can be destroyed for a lack of knowledge, or they can walk in victory if they know the truth.

The Bible tells us that those who are born again are true Children of God. Meaning, "God is their true Father." Do you really want to know what that means? Do you want to walk like Jesus walked? Do you want to do the will of God the Father? Do you want to spend eternity with God?

What does it mean by "God is our Father?" This means "relationship" (related to God by birth). Many have confused "relationship" with "fellowship." These are two different things, and do not mean the same thing. Christians should know the difference between "relationship" and "fellowship."

The English Dictionary defines "relationship" as

1. The quality or state of being related; connection.

2. Connected by blood, marriage, etc.; kinship...

The English Dictionary defines "fellowship" as

1. Companionship; friendly association...

2. A mutual sharing, as of experience, activity, interest, etc....

What kind of "relationship" do Christians have with God? What kind of "fellowship" do Christians have with God? We should get these answers from the Scriptures, not from men.

God's Plan for Mankind



If we study the Scriptures from Genesis through Revelation we will see God's complete plan for mankind. We need the complete Scriptures to know the plan of God for man. One verse here and one verse there will not reveal the complete plan of God for man.

One thing we should do to know God's plan for man is to see what God said was already done before the foundation of the world. That is, before man was created. Before we were born into this world. God had already declared certain things as already done, completed, before man was created.

In Revelation 13:8 the Word of God declares "the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world." The Greek word translated "world" in Revelation 13:8 is "kosmos," meaning, the physical world (that which was created in Genesis, Chapter One).

Before the world was created, God declared "the Lamb was already slain." Who is "the Lamb?" All throughout the Bible the Lamb is spoken of as Jesus Christ, the Son of God that took away the sin of the world. In John 1:29 it says, "John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world." Therefore, John the Baptist said that Jesus was the Lamb of God that took away the sin of the world.

How did Jesus take away the sin of the world? Jesus said in John 3:14, "as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up." In Numbers 21:9 it says, "And Moses made a serpent of brass, and put it upon a pole, and it came to pass, that if a serpent had bitten any man, when he beheld the serpent of brass, he lived."

We must learn to understand the Word of God as it is revealed to us in "types and shadows." In "types and shadows," when we look at Jesus on the Cross of Calvary, we must see all our sins and iniquities laid upon Him. Every sin and every sickness, every iniquity and every disease that Satan has inflected us with, we must see Jesus taking them upon Himself (for us). We must believe what Jesus did for us is done, complete, settled forever. When we believe the Gospel that Jesus, John, Paul, and the others preached we will be free.

God declared the true Gospel from the foundation of the world, as completely finished. Once we understand that Gospel, we can also understand how Enoch could walk with God, even before the flood of Noah's time, even before the Law of Moses, even before Jesus went to the Cross and paid the price. "Enoch walked with God: and he was not; for God took him" (Gen. 5:24). How did Enoch walk with God? Hebrews 11:5 says, "By faith Enoch was translated that he should not see death; and was not found, because God had translated him: for before his translation he had this testimony, that he pleased God."

Christians must believe what God says about sin, iniquity, sickness, and disease. God said, He laid all these upon Jesus, that we could be free. Not just freed once when we are born again, but that we should be completely free forever, for all eternity! We must believe the Scriptures, if we want to walk like Enoch walked and be received up into heaven.

Look at what it says in Ephesians 1:3-6,

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ:

According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love:

Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will,

To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.

This is the Word of God to all who are born again into the family of God. Before the foundation of the world (before mankind was created--before the world was created), God had already chosen those who are born again as His very own (Eph. 1:4). God chose every born again Christian in Jesus Christ before we came into this world. God already declared all our sins, iniquities, sickness, and diseases were placed upon Jesus, when He was crucified for us on the Cross of Calvary.

It tells us that God had "...predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will." Predestinated means "preplanned." That means, God had great plans for us. This was God's plan from before the foundation of the world, that we would be adopted by God in Jesus Christ for all eternity (Eph. 1:5). What God planned for us cannot happen unless we agree with God. Sin is disagreeing with God. Righteousness is being in agreement with God. It was God's good pleasure, and His will, that He would make us accepted in the beloved (Eph. 1:6).

God is the One who will perfect us Himself if we agree with God. It is not something we can do of ourselves. In Hebrews 13:20,21 it says,

Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant,

Make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is wellpleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.

Through the blood of the everlasting covenant, God is working to make you perfect in every good work. It is not something you are doing yourself. It is God working in you. Philippians 1:6 says, "Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ." God started a good work in you when you were born again. And it is God that will continue to work in you "until the day of Jesus Christ." But before that day, Philippians 2:13 says, "For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure." God is working in you, to get you to do His good pleasure. It is not something you are doing of your ability. It is God working in you, that you will do His good pleasure.

It is God that is working in you, to perfect all that needs to be perfected in Christ Jesus. It all starts with the new birth. When you were born again, you received a new spirit, which came down from heaven. Your old spirit is passed away, and you have a new spirit within you.

A New Creature



In Ezekiel 11:19 it was prophesied, saying, "I will give them one heart, and I will put a new spirit within you; and I will take the stony heart out of their flesh, and will give them an heart of flesh." This is also repeated again in Ezekiel 36:26. Twice Ezekiel mentions this new spirit within us.

This new spirit replaces the old spirit that was in us from the beginning. This new spirit dwells "in us," in our belly (John 7:38,39). There wasn't anything wrong with the old spirit that was in us. God used that old spirit within us to give us understanding of His Word. He also used that old spirit within man to prophesy things that were to come. He also used that old spirit within man to give inspiration to man, that man could know God, and even write the complete Old Testament (2 Tim. 3:16, 2 Peter 1:20,21). The whole Bible was written by men, who received their information "from their spirit" as it was given to them by God. Job 32:8 tells us, "there is a spirit in man: and the inspiration of the Almighty giveth them understanding."

God communicated with man from man's spirit within him. Proverbs 20:27 says, "The spirit of man is the candle of the LORD, searching all the inward parts of the belly." Our spirit is in our belly. The Holy Spirit searches our spirit to know what God's will is for each of us (Rom. 8:26,27). God is light (1 John 1:5), and He looks in our spirit for the light (candle) He has placed in our spirit.

God works from our spirit. Man works from his soul (mind, will, intellect, reasoning, understanding, etc.). What God does and what man does are two different things, operating from two different parts of man. We must understand that God operates from our spirit, whereas man operates from his soul.

Man was created in the beginning as "a living soul" with a body of flesh and bones, and a spirit within man. The spirit of man was formed in man by the LORD God (Zech. 12:1). This is proven by the Scriptures in Genesis 2:7 and 1 Corinthians 15:45-48. Adam was not spiritual, like Jesus, Who was spiritual. In 1 Corinthians 15:45,46 it says,

And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit.

Howbeit that was not first which is spiritual, but that which is natural; and afterward that which is spiritual.

Adam was created of the elements of the earth, with a terrestrial, physical body which needs air to breathe Adam was a natural man. He was not spiritual. Those who teach that Adam was spiritual and died spiritually when he ate of the tree of knowledge of good and evil could be in great error.

Jesus was a spiritual man, and had a celestial body that did not need air to breathe. Jesus became a natural man also, by being born as a man in the flesh. Mary was Jesus' earthly mother, but God was Jesus' Father. Therefore, when those who are born again go to be with the LORD they have a spiritual body. It says in 1 Corinthians 15:42-44, "So also is the resurrection of the dead. It is sown in corruption; it is raised in incorruption...It is sown in dishonour; it is raised in glory: it is sown in weakness; it is raised in power...It is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body." In the resurrection we become like the angels, and have a celestial body that does not need air to breathe.

Every person born into this world is born "natural, earthly, of this earth." In 1 Corinthians 15:47,48 says,

The first man is of the earth, earthy: the second man is the Lord from heaven.

As is the earthy, such are they also that are earthy: and as is the heavenly, such are they also that are heavenly.

Every person (except Jesus) born into this world was in Adam (mankind), born of man in the flesh. They are all earthly, of this earth. They are not heavenly, as Jesus was heavenly. Jesus, Who was heavenly, came down from heaven. Jesus was spiritual, and took upon Himself the form of man, in an earthly body.

Christians need to understand this "important" revelation of mankind. Adam was earthly, and Jesus Christ was heavenly. Once Christians understand that it will make it easy for God to give them "revelation" of things to come. They will get to know the truth, and the Truth will set them free.

If we listen to men teach what they have heard other men teach, we could end up being destroyed for a lack of knowledge (Hosea 4:6). There was a Word from the LORD years ago, which said, "Those who have taught what they heard other men teach and have not received it from My Spirit, if they will repent, My grace will cover them!"

We must be taught by God if we want to know the truth. Jesus said, "It is written in the prophets, And they shall be all taught of God. Every man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father, cometh unto me" (John 6:45). The apostle John wrote "But the anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye shall abide in him" (1 John 2:27). We must stay with the written Word of God, not the words of men. The written Word and the Holy Spirit always agree (1 John 5:8).

Let us look at the Scriptures and see what it says about man? In Genesis 2:7 it says, "And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul." Two parts of man are mentioned clearly in this verse. First it mentions the physical body of man which was formed "of the dust of the ground." By this, man was partly of the earth. In 1 Corinthians 15:47,48 it explains that man was earthly (of this earth). Man was not spiritual like Jesus, but he was earthly like Adam. Man's body came from the earth. Therefore, man belonged to the earth, and the earth belonged to man.

Actually, dominion was given to mankind partly, because man was earthly (of this earth). Man belonged to the earth and the earth belonged to man. Secondly, out of all the fowl of the air and beasts of the field that were created on the same day that man was created, God did not give dominion to them. God created man in His own likeness and image and gave man dominion and not the fowl of the air or beasts of the field.

In Genesis 2:7, it mentions when the LORD God breathed into the nostrils of man, man became "a living soul." Man did not become "a living spirit." Jesus was "a living Spirit." Adam was "a living soul" (1 Cor. 15:45-48). Do not let the teachings of men tell you differently than what the Scriptures say. God is not a man that He should lie (Numb. 23:19). Believe the Scriptures!

What is "a living soul?" The word "soul" in the Hebrew is "nephesh." In the Old Testament Hebrew, it is not easy to understand, but God has given us a better understanding in the New Testament Greek. In the Greek the word "soul" is "psuche." In the English the word "soul" is "psyche." These all mean the same thing. Each of these meanings added together will give us an understanding of what man is, being "a living soul."

In the Hebrew, the words "Chay nephesh," mean "a living breathing creature." In the Greek, the words "zao psuche" mean, "a living rational and immortal soul."

Rational, means, "the abilities to reason, think, understand, etc."

Immortal, means "will never die, or cease to live."

Notice; man will live forever somewhere whether in the physical body or out of the physical body. Whether in heaven or in hell.

Therefore, we can know for sure that God had a plan for man, which included being with God in heaven for all eternity. Yet, God knew that some people would reject His plan and therefore they will spend eternity in hell. Not because they sinned, but because they would not receive Jesus Christ as their LORD and Savior (John 3:18).

In English, the word "psyche" is a noun, meaning,

1. The human soul.

2. The intellect.

3. The mind, "considered as a subjectively perceived, functional entity. Based ultimately upon spiritual and physical processes. Both with complex processes of their own. It governs the total organism and its interactions with the environment."

The human mind is "Psychic," a spiritual part of the soul,

1. Having to do with the psyche, or mind.

2. Beyond natural or known physical processes.

3. Apparently sensitive to forces beyond the physical world.

Our living soul contains our will, which determines what we will do, and how we will do whatsoever we desire. By our will, we can choose to follow God's plan for our lives, or to go the way of the world and spend eternity in hell. Our will is a part of our "living soul."

We are "a living soul." We have a physical body formed of the dust of the ground. We also have a spirit "within us," which is given to us by the LORD God.

God has complete control over our spirit. It belongs to God, and is placed "within us" for His purpose. When man dies on this earth, his spirit goes back to God who gave it. Ecclesiastes 3:21 says, "Who knoweth the spirit of man that goeth upward, and the spirit of the beast that goeth downward to the earth?" Ecclesiastes 12:7 says, "Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was: and the spirit shall return unto God who gave it."

God uses our spirit to communicate with us. He uses our spirit to give us understanding. Job 32:8 says, "But there is a spirit in man: and the inspiration of the Almighty giveth them understanding." Our spirit belongs to God, who gave it to us. We are not "a spirit," but our spirit is "in us," when we are first born into this world. Natural man has a spirit within them.

By understanding mankind (spirit, soul, and body), we can understand God's plan from the foundation of the world. We can understand everything Jesus said and taught. We must understand man as "a living soul" with a body of flesh and bones, and a spirit from God within them.

In 1 Corinthians 15:45-49, it tells us, man was earthly, "of this earth." Jesus was heavenly, "from heaven above." Man was not spiritual, but Jesus was Spiritual. Not only was Jesus Spiritual, He was a life-giving Spirit. "In Him was life (zoe), and the life was the light of men" (John 1:4). That means, that the very same life that was in Jesus is the same life that we receive "in Him," when we become true children of God.

Jesus said in John 3:6, 7,

That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.

Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again {from above}.

Born again means "born from above." When we were first born into this world, we were born of the flesh. "That which is born of the flesh is flesh," We were born of man, of Adam. We were all in Adam when we came in the flesh. We were earthly, just as Adam was earthly (1 Cor. 15:45-48).

Jesus said, "Ye must be born again {from above}." Until we are born again from above, we only have earthly life (psuche) within us. When we are born again (born from above) we receive heavenly life (zoe).

In 1 Corinthians 15:22 it says, "For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive." Everyone who is still in Adam when they will die (will experience eternal death in hell). Yet, everyone who is "in Christ" when they die, shall be made alive and live forever in heaven. Therefore, "we must be born again."

Jesus said, "...that which is born of the Spirit is spirit." That means, everyone who is born again of the Holy Spirit has the very life of God in them. God is Spirit, and His life (zoe) dwells in all those who are born again of the Holy Spirit.

Does that mean we are no longer a living soul, but are now a living spirit? No, it does not say that. It says, "in Christ" we are "One Spirit with the LORD" (1 Cor. 6:17). It says, "Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new" (2 Cor. 5:17). It says, "Therefore if any man be in Christ," which means "present tense," (are in Christ at the present time).

In Colossians 1:13, it says, "Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son." It means, "your life is hid with Christ in God" (Col. 3:3). It means, you "... are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his." (Rom. 8:9).

You are still the same you. But you have changed positions. You were in Adam. Now you are in Christ. You were born of the flesh, but now you are born of the Spirit. Before you were born again, you did not have the very life of God in you. But once you are born again, you have the very life of God in you (in your spirit).

You still have your same physical body of flesh and bones. You still have your same "living soul." But, you now have a New Spirit within you.

What about the "new Spirit" within you? That new spirit came down from heaven. Being in the new spirit, you are born again "in Christ Jesus." You are no longer in the flesh "in Adam." You are now in the Spirit, "in Christ Jesus." But, you are still, "a living soul." You were in the flesh, but now you are in the Spirit of Christ (Rom. 8:9).

What does that mean for you? That means, "the very life of God dwells in you." God Himself, came down from heaven in your new spirit, and became a part of you. Your old spirit is gone back to heaven and a new spirit came down from heaven to become a part of your "three part being--spirit, soul, and body."

Your new spirit is the beginning of a completely new you, "spirit, soul, and body." God does not look at things the way people look at things. God sees the end from the beginning (Isa. 46:9,10). God declared your name was written in heaven from the foundation of the world. God declared you as a new creature in Christ Jesus before the foundation of the world (Eph. 1:3,4). God said, it was already finished before the foundation of the world. Jesus said "it was finished" when He hung on the Cross.

When are Christians going to believe God, and believe His Word? It is when we believe His Word that things change in our lives. God said we already have eternal life in Christ Jesus. God said we already have a new spirit which came down from heaven.

God also said, He will "in the future" put away all corruption in our soul. God also said, He will "in the future" change this mortal body and it will become immortal. Look at 1 Corinthians 15:51-55,

Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,

In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.

For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.

So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory.

O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?

Did you notice that God didn't say anything about our spirit? Why, because we already have a new spirit. Our spirit is already "perfected" by God. There is nothing wrong with our new spirit.

God dwells in our new spirit in His fulness. We are complete in God in our spirit. Our spirit is perfect in God, just as perfect as God is, so are we "in our spirit." In God, there is no darkness at all (1 John 1:6). In our spirit, there is no darkness at all. No darkness means, no sin, no works of the devil. In Him is life, and where the life of God is, there is no death.

In our spirit, we are alive unto God. The very life of God dwells in our new spirit. The same life that is in the Father is in the Son. The same life that is in the Son is in the spirits of all who are born again of the Spirit. This is the very life of God that flows from the Father, through the Son, into everyone who is born again of the Spirit. We are One Spirit with the LORD (1 Cor. 6:17).

There is no place in the Scriptures that it tells us we are to do anything about our spirit. God already took care of our spirit. He gave us a new spirit, wherein the fulness of the Godhead dwells. In Colossians 2:8-10, it says,

Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.

For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily.

And ye are complete in him, which is the head of all principality and power:

If anyone tells you, "you must train your spirit," do not believe them. You cannot train God. God is in your spirit and there is nothing for you to do about your spirit. God has already done everything that needs to be done about your spirit.

The Word of God does tell us that we must do something about our body and our mind (which is the main part of our soul). Romans 12:1,2 says,

I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.

And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

These things are "our responsibility." God gave us the responsibility to do something about our physical bodies and our mind (which is a part of our living soul).

Satan cannot attack our spirit, for God dwells in our spirit. But Satan still attacks our physical bodies. Sin is still in our flesh (Rom. 7:14-23). Corruption is still in our mind. We must overcome the works of the devil in our flesh and in our mind.

How do we overcome sin in the flesh and in our mind? By the Word of God working in us from our spirit! God is working in us, from our spirit, to do His good pleasure. Philippians 2:12,13 says,

Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.

For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.

Did you notice that it says "work out your own salvation with fear and trembling." That means, you have a part in your complete salvation. You must work together with God, Who is working in you, "in your spirit." God is in your spirit, working to perfect "your living soul." That is the real you, "a living soul."

This was God's plan from the beginning, your complete salvation. In 1 Thessalonians 5:23 it says, "And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ." How many Christians understand what this is saying? It says that God is going to sanctify you wholly (that is completely). You do not have to sanctify yourself. God is going to do it for you. Christ Jesus has already sanctified you in Himself. Hebrews 10:10 says, "By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all." Jesus already did that for us. Jesus did it once for ever. So for those who are in Christ, sanctification is already done.

But, then it goes on saying, "I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ" (1 Thess. 5:23). Why does it say, "your whole spirit and soul and body?" Notice God is very precise in what He says, and how He says it. God put the spirit first before the soul and body. Why? When man was created, it was "body, soul, and spirit" (Gen. 2:7). Now, it is "spirit, soul, and body." Why?

The real person, who is the "living soul," was always between the body and the spirit. The body represents this earth. The spirit represents God in heaven. Man, a "living soul" must make a choice between the earth and heaven. In Deuteronomy 30:19 the LORD said, "I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live." The earth represents the world and the things of this world. Heaven represents God and everything that pertains to God.

Man, who is a "living soul" must make a decision between heaven and earth, between the things of this world or the things of God. For those who are born again, we have a part to play in the preservation of our "soul and body." God already did His part in perfecting our spirit. The spirit of man was always God's part of man. There never was anything wrong with man's spirit.

Sin did not enter into the spirit of man. Sin entered the "living soul" and corrupted the souls of men. Sin took up residence in the flesh of man, which brought mortality (death). When man sinned in the garden of Eden, sin and death passed "upon" all mankind. Romans 5:12 says, "Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned." The Scripture does not say that Adam died immediately, the very day that he ate of the tree of knowledge of good and evil. Men said that. God did not say that. God said, "death passed upon all men..." Upon, means "became resident within man, but did not complete its action."

Everyone born into this world was born with "sin and death resident in them" (all except Jesus). Yet, everyone was still alive "in the spirit, soul, and body." Death was resident in man, but it did not overtake man at that time.

In Genesis 2:17, it says, "But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die." When the LORD God said "in the day," He was not speaking of a 24-hour day. That is very clear by what He said, when it says, "thou shalt surely die." Thou shalt, "means, following, in the future."

Men, not listening to the Holy Spirit, have come up with their idea of what the LORD God said. But those who will seek the LORD, and study the words "thou shalt surely die" will know the truth. The words "surely die," in the Hebrew, signify two deaths, corresponding with Revelation 20:6,14. The Hebrew word "muwth," translated to both "surely" and "die," is a primitive root word.

The first word "muwth," translated "surely," is in the infinitive mood. Infinite means, "unlimited; not limited to any person, number, or tense." Infinitive means "existence or action without reference to person, number, or tense. It is usually the form of the first person singular present."

In the case of man (the first Adam), eternal death came upon mankind. But, not upon Jesus, the Second Adam, (in Him was eternal life). "For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive" (1 Cor. 15:22).

The second Hebrew word translated "die," is also the same Hebrew word "muwth," but it is in the imperfect mood, expressing an action, process, or condition which is incomplete. This pertains to the death of the natural body, which is called "mortal" in Romans 8:11 and 1 Corinthians 15:53,54. Mortal means "death is resident; in the process of dying; and must eventually die."

Therefore, the word "surely" pertains to eternal death and the word "die" pertains to physical death. Neither of these two overtook Adam and Eve the same day they ate of the tree of knowledge of good and evil. Eternal death does not complete its action until the lake of fire. Revelation 20:14,15 says,

And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.

And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.

When a living soul is cast into the lake of fire, then eternal death completes its action.

Before people are cast into the lake of fire, they still have an opportunity to receive the LORD Jesus Christ, and become born again. When they become born again, they pass from eternal death unto eternal life. John 5:24 says, "Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life." Many times Christians have read this verse without understanding what it truly says. There are conditions in this verse that should be understood. The first condition is "...He that heareth my word..." The word "heareth" implies that someone is hearing at the present time. It does not mean the same as "heard," which implies at one time they heard. Therefore, it is speaking of someone who is still hearing His Word on a daily bases. The second condition is "...and believeth on him that sent me..." This word "believeth" implies that they are still believing, not that they did believe at one time. Therefore, we must be believing at the present time, not that we believed at one time.

Therefore, those who are born again, and hearing His Word and believing "shall not come into condemnation..."

Concerning physical death, it was 930 years later that Adam died physically. We do not know when Eve died physically, but she was most likely still living when they were 130 years old and she bear to Adam Seth, and after that, Adam had many more sons and daughters (Gen. 4:25, 5:1-5).

Isn't it sad that so many Christians try to figure out the Word of God with their natural minds, when the Word of God says, "the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned" (1 Cor. 2:14). Yet, this kind of teaching in the churches today is not something new. It was happening already at the time of Jude, when he wrote the Epistle of Jude.

All in all, what is interesting to notice about 1 Thessalonians 5:23 is that it says "spirit, soul, and body," not "body, soul, and spirit." The LORD God made man, body first, soul second, and then put a spirit within man. That spirit that the LORD God put in man was always perfect. Therefore, when man dies, their spirit goes back to God who gave it (Ecc. 12:7).

It has always been that way and will continue to be that way according to the Word of God. When we receive "revelation" from God as to what He is doing with man here on earth it brings great joy in our spirit (for those who are born again), but sadness for those who are still in Adam. When they die, their spirit goes back to God who gave it. Their physical body returns to dust. And their soul goes down to hell. There they are tormented forever and ever.

But, look at what God is doing with the spirit of man? Because the spirit of man always belonged to God, God replaces the old spirit of man with a new spirit "in Christ," making one new man, "the body of Christ" (Eph. 2:15).

When God began His complete salvation of man, He began with the spirit of man, that already belonged to God. Then God uses the spirit of man to reconcile the whole man to God. God works from the new spirit of man in everything He does in His children. God started with the part of man that was not affected by the sin of Adam and Eve. Only the soul and physical body of man was affected by sin in the garden of Eden.

It is interesting also about Adam and Eve in the garden of Eden, that the Tree of Life was also in the garden "before" Adam and Eve ate of the tree of knowledge of good and evil. God's plan for man to inherit eternal life in heaven was there in the garden of Eden before Adam and Eve sinned. God never changed His plan. It remained the same from the foundation of the world. What Satan did to Adam and Eve did not change God's plan for man. God had already declared "the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world" (Rev. 13:8).

God's love for man was so great that God Himself became one with man, by dwelling in the spirit of man after the new birth. In 2 Corinthians 5:19 it says, "To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation." Does anyone understand what that means? "God Himself, was in Christ reconciling the world unto Himself." Once Jesus died for the sins and iniquities of man, and then arose again from the dead, Christians were then added to the body of Christ. God Himself, dwelling in us. "God is light, and in Him is no darkness at all" (1 John 1:5). In our spirit there is no sin. We are perfect in our spirit, where God dwells in His fulness.

Next, let us take a look at those who are "in Christ." Of those who are in Christ, "we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones" (Eph. 5:30). We are One Spirit with the LORD (1 Cor. 6:17). Christ is our head, and we are His body (Col. 1:18,19).

What does this mean? In 1 Peter 1:23 it says, "Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever." The seed of our new birth is planted in our new spirit. That seed is "incorruptible." That seed is "the Word of God." Jesus is also "the Word of God" (John 1:1, 14). Jesus Christ is in our new spirit.

Let us look at what Jesus said in John 15:1-8,

I am the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman.

Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit.

Now ye are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you.

Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me.

I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.

If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned.

If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you. Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples.

In these verses, Jesus is teaching the importance of being a branch of the True Vine. The Father is the husbandman (the one who takes care of the complete Vine). The Father inspects every branch, and every fruit on the branch. Without the Father there would be no Vine. Without the Vine there would be no branches. Without the branches there would be no fruit. All three are important in order to produce fruit.

Let us use this example to understand our "relationship" to the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Let us see what Jesus is saying?

The True Vine gets its life from the Root of the Vine, which is the Father. The life that is in the Root of the Vine flows through the Vine into the branches. Therefore, the branches get their life from the Vine, which gets its life from the Root, which came from "the incorruptible seed" which is "the Word of God."

The eternal life of a person who is born again is "the very life of God flowing into us from the Vine, which is Christ Jesus." It is not our life, it is His life flowing into us from "the incorruptible seed" which is the Word of God. The apostle Paul said of himself, "...nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me" (Gal. 2:20). It is not our life. It is His life flowing into us. It is the very life of God the Father, flowing into and through the Son, into everyone who is born again. All coming from "the incorruptible seed," which is the Word of God.

But remember, we were in Adam before we were born again. When we were born again, we were "grafted into Christ," as a branch. Romans 11:16,17 explains,

For if the firstfruit be holy, the lump is also holy: and if the root be holy, so are the branches.

And if some of the branches be broken off, and thou, being a wild olive tree, wert graffed in among them, and with them partakest of the root and fatness of the olive tree.

Christians are "grafted" into the True Vine, which is Christ, the firstborn from the dead (the firstfruit). We were taken out of Adam and grafted into Christ. We were in the flesh, now we are in the Spirit of Christ (Rom. 8:9) Now, as the branch cannot live without the Vine, we cannot continue to live without God in our spirit. God is in us, giving us the life we need to live forever and ever. God is in us, and we are in Christ, therefore, we have eternal life flowing in us and through us.

At the same time, we must consider all that Jesus was saying in John 15:1-8. Jesus said in John 15:6, "If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned." Just because we are born again, that does not guarantee that we will spend eternity in heaven. If we do not abide in Christ, we can be taken out. It is our responsibility to abide in Christ. God puts us in Christ through the new birth. Once we are in Christ, it is up to us to remain in Christ. If we do not abide in Christ, the Father will cast us out, as a husbandman takes care of his vineyard.

Let us see another example of this from Revelation 22:1,2, where the apostle John is using the word "water" symbolically for "the Word of God." It says,

And he shewed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb.

In the midst of the street of it, and on either side of the river, was there the tree of life, which bare twelve manner of fruits, and yielded her fruit every month: and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations.

This Word of God, which was with the Father and the Holy Spirit from the beginning is "the incorruptible seed" of the new birth. This is the Word of God that is spoken of in John 1:1, which says, "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God." The Word of God that was with God, and was God in the beginning is "the incorruptible seed" of our new birth (1 Peter 1:23).

In Revelation 22:1, the Apostle John is showing us the Word of God flowing as "a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal." The "Word of God" flows "out of the throne of God and of the Lamb."

Why the throne and why the Lamb? The throne is where God the Father is seated. The Son (Who is the Lamb) is seated with the Father on His throne (Rev. 3:21).

John used the words "the Lamb" in place of "the Son." Why? Because it was "the Lamb" that was slain in our place, to take away the sin of the world and make peace with God the Father. It was the Lamb Whose blood was shed for the everlasting covenant (Heb. 5:9, 9:12, 10:14,17, 13:20). Until the Lamb was slain, no one could be born again into the body of Christ.

Jesus is the firstborn from the dead (Rom. 8:29, Col. 1:15,18, Heb. 11:28, 12:23). It was the death of His physical body--wherein the life of the flesh was in the blood (Lev. 17:11).

In 1 Peter 3:18 it says, "For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit." Notice that Jesus was put to death "in the flesh," (not in the Spirit). Jesus was raised again from the dead "by the Spirit."

In Leviticus 17:11 it says, "For the life of the flesh is in the blood: and I have given it to you upon the altar to make an atonement for your souls: for it is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul." Notice: it does not say for the spirit of man, it says "for the soul." The flesh of man (in which the life of the flesh was in the blood), had to pay the price for the sins of "the soul" of man. The flesh did not commit the sin. The spirit of man did not commit the sin. Man, "the living soul" committed the sin.

To redeem man, the flesh had to die. Hebrews 9:27 says, "And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment." The flesh had to die. Being that the flesh had to die, and the life of the flesh was in the blood, the blood had to be shed (to produce the death).

Why "the Lamb" in Revelation 22:1? Because Hebrews 9:28 tells us that "the Lamb" took our death upon Himself. He died for us. It says, "So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation." Therefore "the Lamb" paid the price to make an atonement for "the souls." It was "the life of the flesh" of "the Lamb" that paid the price for the sins of man (who, in Genesis 6:3 God called "flesh"). It says, "the LORD said, My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also is flesh..."

The "Lamb" is Christ, Who is the head of the Body of Christ (the Church). For the Church to live, it's life must come through Jesus Christ, Who is the Head. Jesus Christ sits upon the throne with the Father.

Revelation 22:2 goes on saying, "on either side of the river, was there the tree of life..." What does this mean? There is only one Tree of Life. The Word of God flows "through" the Tree of life. The "tree" includes the branches, which are those who are in Christ. It also says, "...which bare twelve manner of fruits, and yielded her fruit every month." Those in Christ are the branches, and the Word of God flows through them, producing the fruit on the branches.

The King James Version does not give a clear understanding of what it says in the Greek. The Greek shows that there are twelve kinds of fruit, and all twelve kinds are produced every month (not one kind each month).

It is interesting to notice the mention of "every month." For, in heaven there are no months. There can be no months without there being days and weeks. There are no nights. Therefore, there is only "one day." Thereby, it is speaking of what is happening here on earth today. Every day, every month, since Jesus ascended to the Father, the branches of the Vine are producing healing for the nations.

In the remaining part of this verse it also mentions "the nations." In heaven there are no separate nations, for we are all one (One in the Father, One in the Son, One in the Holy Spirit, One Church, One body, One Tree of Life, everything is One).

Revelation 22:2 also says, "...the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations." As the Word of God flows out of the branches and out of the leaves on the branches, it goes out to bring healing to the nations. By this, all the nations of the world will hear the Word of God.

Without the Throne where the Father sits, there could be no Tree of Life. Without the Lamb who sits on the throne with the Father there could be no branches. Without the branches there could be no leaves. Without the leaves there could be no healing of the nations. The healing of the nations comes from the Tree of Life.

God has a perfect plan, by His life flowing from the throne, through the Lamb, through the branches, unto the nations. Thereby, His Word goes into all the world, from the branches of the Tree of Life. Those who believe that someday, in eternity, they will get to eat of the Tree of Life, have missed it. They are following the teachings of men. Those who receive their information from the Holy Spirit will know that they are to be eating from the Tree of Life, now, today, before they enter into heaven. Then they still need to eat of the Tree of Life to continue to live in heaven (Rev. 2:7).

All throughout the New Testament we see evidence that our life in Christ is dependent on God the Father. Without the Father, the Son could not be our LORD and Savior.

The same life that is in the Father is in the Son. John 5:26 says, "For as the Father hath life in himself; so hath he given to the Son to have life in himself." John 1:4 says, "In him was life; and the life was the light of men." Our eternal life is the same life that is in the Son. Without the Father we would not have eternal life. Without the Son we would not have eternal life.

Our life is in Christ Jesus. His life is in the Father. Therefore, Jesus said, "And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven" (Matt. 23:9).

Notice something else of importance. When the Scripture mentions "the Tree of Life," it is always one tree, not trees as though there were many trees of life. When the Scriptures mention "the Word of God," as in John 1:1 and 1 Peter 1:23, it is "the Word" singular, not Words as many. When the Scriptures mention "the body of Christ" it is not bodies of Christ's as of many, but one body. When the Scriptures mention "eternal life," it is not eternal lives, as many, but one life. Just as Galatians 3:16 says, "Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ." In Ephesians 4:4-6 it says,

There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling;

One Lord, one faith, one baptism,

One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.

Christians are all ONE in Christ (Who is One). One Father, One Christ, One body, One life, One Spirit, One Tree of Life, etc.

This "incorruptible seed" which is "the Word of God," is the beginning of our eternal life. It has within it the total plan of God for our lives "individually." Every born again Child of God is born of the "incorruptible seed." The seed contains the image of the Tree or Vine it came from.

In 1 Corinthians 15:49, it says, "And as we have borne the image of the earthy, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly." Our natural life (psuche) was in the image of Adam. But our new birth is in the image of Christ. That image of Christ within us contains all the fruit of the Spirit (Gal. 5:22,23).

Besides these nine fruit of the Spirit there is also an "individual" pattern for our lives in our spirit. Everything God desires to do in each individual's life is in the "seed" of our new birth. In some, there is the calling of an Apostle, some a calling of a Prophet, some a calling of a Teacher, some a calling of an Evangelist, and some a calling of a Pastor. These are only a few of the many callings of God for individuals. Not everyone is called to be an Apostle, Prophet, Teacher, Evangelist, or Pastor. But, every born again Christian is called to do some type of work in the body of Christ, that they "bring forth fruit" unto the harvest. Every branch must bear fruit (John 15:5).

It is important that each individual gets to know God as their Father, that the Holy Spirit can reveal to them the calling of God on their lives. Once they know their calling, then the Holy Spirit can work with them to produce fruit according to their calling.

GET TO KNOW YOUR FATHER



We need to understand that God the Father is the source of all eternal life. The eternal life we have comes from the Father through the Son (the Lamb). Then we can better understand our "relationship" with the Father. We are related to the Father by the new birth. Being born of the Spirit and the Word we become true children of God. God is our true Father.

No father on earth that can even compare with God the Father. God the Father is the Father of all good gifts. James 1:17 says, "Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning." Notice, "Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above..." Who wants any gift that is not good and perfect? Why not have the good and perfect gifts, instead of what the world calls good. What God calls good is the best for us, and all of God's gifts are perfect. That's the kind of Father we have when we are born again into the family of God.

Notice also, "these good and perfect gifts" come down from above. They are not the gifts that men seek from others. The good and perfect gifts come down from above, where the Father sits upon His throne. What's even better yet, is that when the Father took up His position in our new spirit, He brought all the "good and perfect gifts" along with Him, in our spirit. We already have all the "good and perfect gifts" in our spirit. They are already deposited in our new spirit, waiting for us to receive them from our spirit, where the fulness of God dwells.

Consider this: "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ" (Eph. 1:3). It says, "hath blessed us..." We already have "all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ." They are in our spirit, where the fullness of God dwells, waiting for us to make use of them.

These "spiritual blessings" include all the powers of heaven working for you from within your spirit. There is no power greater than that which comes down from heaven.

Every Christian has "all authority and all power over all the works of the enemy" (Luke 9:1, 10:19). Christians also have three witnesses to this power, "the Word, the Spirit, and the Blood" (1 John 5:8). With these three witnesses nothing that can come against us can stand.

We have the greatest, and best weapons of warfare this creation has ever known. They are designed and operated by God. They proceed from the Throne of God through the Lamb, delivered by the Holy Spirit to destroy all the works of darkness. What a blessing! Nothing can hurt or harm us. We have the weapons to defeat every fiery dart Satan can try to attack us with.

Our Father, Whose throne is in heaven, has set up His command post for our lives, in our spirit, where He dwells in His fullness. He is well able to meet our every need. He is our source for everything we will ever have need of. Jesus said, "Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall ask the Father in my name, he will give it you" (John 16:23). There is only one requirement to receive "Whatsoever ye shall ask." That is, that we believe and keep Jesus' commandments (John 14:15, 15:10).

Jesus cannot lie, and He also said,

Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.

And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.

If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it. (John 14:12-14).

By this, we can see the power and authority we have received goes beyond all that we need. It even includes meeting the needs of others.

We have been blessed with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ Jesus. There is nothing that we need that God has not already supplied. Not only our needs, but also the needs of others as well.

Here is another important thing about knowing God the Father. In 1 John 4:8, it tells us that "God is love!" What does that mean? First we must understand what the Scriptures say about love. In 1 Corinthians 13:4-8, the New King James Version says,

Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up;

does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil;

does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth;

bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

Love never fails...

Now for many, they still do not understand "Love," even after reading the above verses.

But, understand, "God is Love." Therefore, we can apply these verses to God, for God is Love.

[God] suffers long and is kind; [God] does not envy; [God] does not parade [Himself], is not puffed up;

does not behave rudely, does not seek [His] own, is not provoked, thinks no evil;

does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth;

bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

[God] never fails...

That is a description of God the Father, for God is Love.

Looking at just a few of these statements, we see a truth that we need to understand. "God suffers long and is kind..."

From the time I was born into this world, I did not know God as a Father. I knew who God was. I knew who Jesus was. I knew that Jesus died on the cross for the sins of the whole world. I knew what most Christians know today about God and Jesus Christ, Who became Man and died for the sins of the whole world.

But, I did not know that "God is love." Therefore, I tried to be good, so that I would be accepted when I died. All those years, until I was forty-five years old, God loved me. God was kind to me. God suffered long, all those years because of my ignorance. I tried to please God according to my understanding of God the Father, in which I was totally miss-guided, and did not know that God is Love.

God loves us, even when we do not love Him. We can be miss-led for years and years, but God still loves us. God "is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek His own, is not provoked, and thinks no evil."

God the Father is like "A certain man [who] had two sons" in Luke 15:11-32. The younger son took his inheritance and went off into a far country "and wasted his substance with riotous living" (Luke 15:13). All this time, his father loved him, but did nothing about his younger son's situation.

When this younger son realized his situation, he returned to his father, and "said unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in thy sight, and am no more worthy to be called thy son" (Luke 15:21). This son's father never stopped loving his son. But, he could do nothing for him until his son returned to his father's house. "God is Love," and God "is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek [His] own, is not provoked, and thinks no evil."

When this younger son returned to his father's house,

the father said to his servants, Bring forth the best robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet:

And bring hither the fatted calf, and kill it; and let us eat, and be merry:

For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found. And they began to be merry (Luke 15:22-24).

"God is Love," God,

does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth;

bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

[God] never fails...

Christians must get to know God the Father for Who He is, for "God is Love."

When Jesus, Who is the "express image" of the Father was hanging on the Cross looked upon those who crucified Him, He said, "Father, forgive them for they know not what they do" (Luke 23:34). Love never fails...

A good father knows what is best for his children. A good father makes plans for his children, even before they are born into this world. A good father cares about everything concerning his children. A good father provides everything a child needs, without asking the child first, what they need? Jesus said in Matthew 6:24, "Ye cannot serve God and mammon."

Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment?

Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they?

Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature?

And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin:

And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.

Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith?

Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed?

(For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things.

But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you (Matt. 6:25-33).

Does Jesus tell us the Truth? Jesus said His Father was God. Jesus said of those who are born again in Matthew 23:9, "And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven." Can we believe Jesus? Can we believe God?

God is a much better Father than any good earthly father. Whatsoever a good earthly father can do for his children, God the Father can do so much more. There is nothing too hard for God.

Once more, let us sum up our "relationship to God."

The new birth produces "relationship" between us and God. The English Dictionary defines "relationship" as

1. The quality or state of being related; connection..

2. Connected by blood, marriage, etc.; kinship...

Our "relationship" to God is a work of God within our spirit. John 1:13, talking about being born again, says, "Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God." It is not of the bloodline of our earthly parents. It is not of the will of the flesh. It is not of the will of man. It is a work of God, adopting us in Christ Jesus to Himself. Jesus said, "No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him..." (John 6:44).

For anyone who is born again, God loved them from the foundation of the world. Before they were even born into this world, God had great plans for them. Ephesians 1:4,5 says,

According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love:

Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will.

It was God's will, and God's good pleasure to adopt us in Christ Jesus, even before Adam was created.

Yes, it was God that drew us to Jesus (John 6:44). At the same time, we needed to "receive Jesus as LORD," or we would not have become born again. God does not force anyone to become born again. God draws us to Jesus, and then it is up to us if we will receive Jesus as LORD. John 1:11, 12 says,

He came unto his own, and his own received him not.

But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:

When a person "receives Jesus as LORD, they become born again into the family of God. God becomes their True Father, and they become God's True Children "born again of the Spirit and the Word." All a person does is "receives Jesus as LORD," God does all the rest. By this, they become "related to God," their relationship is established in their "new spirit" which comes down from heaven. At that point, our "relationship" to God is completed. We are True children of God. God is our Father.

It is very important that we "know," beyond all doubt that we are "truly born again." There are many who call themselves Christians, but do not have a witness in their spirit. The Bible says in Romans 8:16, "The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God." The Holy Spirit must bear witness in your spirit, if you "are truly born again."

There are many today, who have said "a sinner's prayer," and were told that they were born again. The Bible does not teach that a person gets born again by saying "a sinner's prayer." A prayer to forgive us of our sins can be included in a prayer to "receive Jesus Christ as LORD." But, a sinner's prayer alone will not get a person born again. To become born again, we must follow the Word of God in John 1:11,12, Which says,

He came unto his own, and his own received him not.

But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name.

Each person, "individually," must "receive Jesus as LORD," to become born again. When they do that, verse thirteen says, "Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God." No one else can do it for you. You must do it yourself. You must "receive Jesus as LORD" yourself. Then you will be born of God, not of man, not of blood, and not of the will of the flesh...but of God!

In 1 John 5:10 it says, "He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself..." Anyone who is truly born again must have a witness in himself. Look at it this way, when God takes your old spirit from you and puts a new spirit within you, you will have a witness in you, in your new spirit. When God Himself, enters your new spirit and imparts to you eternal life, you will know it.

It is not a voice. It is not some great "spiritual experience." It is a knowing. You know that you know, and no one can tell you that you don't know. It is a positive knowing, that no man can give you. Only God can make Himself known to you from your spirit.

If you do not have this "knowing, beyond all doubt," then it would be wise of you to ask Jesus Christ to come into your life and become the LORD of your life, forever. If you ask Him from your heart, and mean what you say, He will come into your spirit and you will become born again of the Word and the Spirit. God cannot lie. He has given His Word concerning how to become born again in John 1:11-13. So do it. It is the best thing you can do in all the world.

Do it now! From your heart ask Jesus to come into your life and be your LORD and Savior. Let me tell you what happened to me when I did.

It was on a Thursday Evening, the last week of June, 1979. I went into my basement and cried out to the LORD! I said, "LORD, I cannot continue to live the way I have been living." (I had been a member of a Church from a child. I was forty-five years old. I never missed Church. I even served on Church Councils, but I did not have peace in my spirit. I did everything I knew and was taught to be a good Christian, but I did not have a witness in my spirit that I was truly born again. I knew there was something I needed that I didn't have and that was, I needed the LORD Jesus to take control of my life). I said, "Jesus, take over my life for me, I cannot continue to live the way I have been living."

Once I did that, there was a change in my life. I knew I was no longer the same. I had a peace in my spirit I never had before. Even my thinking changed. I found myself no longer wanting to become rich and own a lot of property. All I really wanted to do was "study the Bible, day and night." I wanted to know Jesus better than ever before. I loved reading the Bible. The Word of God came alive in me. I have never stopped wanting to read and study the Bible. It is one of the most important things in my life.

Anyone who is truly born again will love reading and studying the Word of God. The Word of God is our very life in the spirit. We cannot live in the spirit without loving the Word of God. Every day, the Word of God is alive in those who are truly born again.

If you do not have a true witness in your spirit, I would encourage you not to wait any longer. With a sincere desire in your heart, ask Jesus to come into your life and be your LORD and Savior. Do it now!

FELLOWSHIP



The next thing of major importance is our "fellowship" with God. The English Dictionary defines "fellowship" as

1. Companionship; friendly association...

2. A mutual sharing, as of experience, activity, interest, etc....

Fellowship with God is "our responsibility." God dwells in our spirit, yet we are "a living soul." It is up to us if we will have "fellowship" with God, or simply "ignore" Him.

What happens if we "ignore" God? God is still in us, "in our spirit." But, there is no communication "from us to God." The Holy Spirit is still working in us. Philippians 2:13 says, "For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure." God is still doing His part, but what are we doing?

In 1 John 1:5,6 says,

This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.

If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth:

Darkness represents the works of the devil, including the works of the flesh. When Christians are not "walking in the Light" they are actually having fellowship with the works of darkness. God cannot have fellowship with darkness.

Therefore, we must establish "our own fellowship" with God. God will not do it for us. Because there is still sin in the flesh, 1 John 1:7 says, "But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin."

Sin in the flesh is overcome "by walking in the Light." For God is Light, and there is no darkness in God at all. How is this "sin in the flesh" overcome? By the blood of the Lamb, which was shed from the foundation of the world (Rev. 13:8). With our sins overcome by the blood of the Lamb, we can have "fellowship" with God the Father.

If we walk in darkness "sin" we lose our "fellowship" with God the Father, but not our "relationship." God is still our Father, but He can do nothing for us when we are "out of fellowship." Just like the father of the younger son in Luke 15:11-32. As long as the younger son was away in a far country, the father could do nothing for him. It wasn't until the son returned to the father that the father could help him and receive him back.

Remember, what the father said, "...this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found..." (Luke 15:24). Had this son not returned to his father, he would have been "dead and lost forever." He could have lost his "relationship" with his father, had he not returned.

That is why, "fellowship" with God is so important. That is why, we must not walk in darkness, for it could lead to a loss of "relationship" to God our Father. Many Christians will deny this, "but when those who deny it experience the lake of fire," they will admit it is true. If their name is taken out of the Lambs book of life, they will spend eternity in the lake of fire.

Jesus said in Revelation 3:5, "He that overcometh, the same shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life..." If we want our names to remain in the book of life, we need to overcome the works of darkness, and walk in the light. Revelation 22:19 says, "And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book."

Revelation 21:7,8 says,

He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son.

But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.

Revelation 21:27 says, "And there shall in no wise enter into it any thing that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh abomination, or maketh a lie: but they which are written in the Lamb's book of life." Look also at Romans 11:21, where it says, "For if God spared not the natural branches, take heed lest he also spare not thee."

It is very important that "we" maintain our "fellowship" with God the Father. It is our only hope of eternal life in heaven forever and ever.

Yes, we have eternal life once we are born again of the Spirit and the Word. The very life of God dwells in us (in our spirit). But, we are not the spirit, we are "a living soul," who has been translated from the flesh of Adam to the Spirit of Christ (Rom. 8:9). In Christ, we are One Spirit with the LORD (1 Cor. 6:17). Our life is hid with Christ in God (Col. 3:3).

To remain in Christ, it requires our "fellowship" with God. If we are not in "fellowship" with God, then we are automatically in fellowship "with the devil or the spirits of this world." There's no in-between. We are one or the other, when it comes to "fellowship."

What is the advantage of "fellowship" with God? By "fellowship" with God, we maintain our "relationship" with God. That is the most important aspect of "fellowship." But, without "fellowship" with God, we cannot mature in Christ. Jesus said, "It is written in the prophets, And they shall be all taught of God..." (John 6:45). Without "fellowship" with God, we cannot be taught by God. God teaches us through "fellowship."

How do we have "fellowship" with God? First we need to understand our position in this life. In this life, we are "a living soul," we have a body of flesh and bones, and we have a spirit, which belongs to God. Our living soul is between our physical body and our spirit. Before we are born again, our "living soul" is in the flesh of Adam. After we are born again, our "living soul" is in our new spirit "in Christ" (Rom. 8:9, 2 Cor. 5:17).

On one side of our living soul is God, working for us from our spirit. On the other side of our living soul is the flesh, the world, and the spirits of this world. We decide which way we will look for "fellowship." If we look to our spirit (where we should be looking at all times) we can have fellowship with God. But, if we keep looking to the world, our fellowship will be with the spirits of this world (Satan, being the god of this world).

Once we are born again, we are related to God and He dwells in our new spirit. Everything God has planned for our lives is programed into our spirit. The incorruptible seed, which is the Word of God, contains the complete information we need to know God's will for our lives "individually." To access this information, we must have fellowship with God.

If we do not access this information in our spirit, we will not know the will of God for our lives. If we do not know the will of God for our lives, we will not be able to maintain "fellowship" with God. We will still be "related" to God, but without "fellowship." Without "fellowship" we will be like the younger son of the father who left his father and went off into a far country. The end results could be very disastrous.

There are two major ways to have "fellowship" with God. The first major way to have fellowship with God is "abiding in His Word." Abiding in His Word is not simply "reading our Bibles." Anyone can do that. And many do that without having "fellowship" with God.

Abiding in the Word of God, means "living in the Word of God." Living in the Word of God means, making the Word of God the very source of our life. Look at what Jesus said about His Word in John 6:48 "I am that bread of life." What does the word "bread" mean? Bread is something you eat, to maintain your life and health. If you do not eat, you could starve and die.

The word "life" in John 6:48 is "zoe," meaning eternal life, not physical earthly life. When we understand that Jesus is the Word of God, manifest in the flesh, then we can understand what Jesus is saying when He says, "I am that bread of life."

Eating the "bread of life" is fellowship with God. It keeps our eternal life "healthy." Actually, without eating the bread of life, we could die. Therefore, we must "eat the bread of life." In John 6:51 Jesus said, "I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world." It is interesting to note that "if Jesus would not have given His life for the world, none of us could have eternal life." Our eternal life is in Jesus, and maintained by eating "that bread of life."

Now look at John 6:53, "Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you." How do we "eat His flesh, and drink His blood?" When we live our life by abiding in His Word, we are eating His flesh and drinking His blood. It is the abiding in His Word that makes the difference.

Remember, "abiding" is not just reading the Word with our eyes or hearing the Word with our ears. That anyone can do, even those who are following the devil. The Devil knows the Word from one end to the other (Matt. 4:, Luke 4:). The Devil can quote the Word anytime he desires to. But the Devil cannot abide in the Word, and the Word will not abide in him. To do that a person must be born again.

To "eat His flesh, and drink His blood" which is abiding in His Word, we must "consume" the Word of God (not the words of men). There is a major difference between the Word of God, and the words of men. Men have written many Bibles, claiming them to be the Word of God. But God's Word stands forever, and cannot be changed by men and their translations. Only the original Hebrew, Chaldees, and Greek writings contain the true Word of God. Those who do not study, eat, and consume, the true Word of God, will easily be led astray.

There are numerous errors in many translations. Even the King James Version has errors in it. Therefore, we must check our translations with the Hebrew, Chaldees, and Greek to know if what we believe is truly the Word of God. These errors in translations cause many Christians to get "out of fellowship with God." "God is light, and in him is no darkness at all" (1 John 1:5). If the translation we use is not correct, we can get out of fellowship.

Take an example in the King James Version of the Bible. In John 5:4 it says, "For an angel went down at a certain season into the pool, and troubled the water: whosoever then first after the troubling of the water stepped in was made whole of whatsoever disease he had." The words "an angel" here are not a correct translation. It should read "a messenger."

What some translations have done is they changed the inspired written Word of God to say, "...an angel of the Lord went down..." What makes this bad is that it was not an angel, it was "a messenger of Satan." As we continue to read in John 5:5-9, it says,

And a certain man was there, which had an infirmity thirty and eight years.

When Jesus saw him lie, and knew that he had been now a long time in that case, he saith unto him, Wilt thou be made whole?

The impotent man answered him, Sir, I have no man, when the water is troubled, to put me into the pool: but while I am coming, another steppeth down before me.

Jesus saith unto him, Rise, take up thy bed, and walk.

And immediately the man was made whole, and took up his bed, and walked: and on the same day was the sabbath.

God does not play Bingo, or the Lottery. God does not limit healing to only the first person that gets into the pool. God is not a respecter of persons. God heals anyone and everyone who will believe.

That whole situation at the pool of Bethesda was an operation of Satan. This man was looking to the wrong source for healing. He should have been looking to the LORD, not some other spirit.

If you study the remaining information in this chapter, after the LORD healed this man, it says in John 5:14, "Afterward Jesus findeth him in the temple, and said unto him, Behold, thou art made whole: sin no more, lest a worse thing come unto thee." What was this man's sin in the first place? He was looking to the wrong source for his healing. "The LORD is our healer" (Ex. 15:26), not some messenger from Satan. What worse thing could come upon this man?

He had been "in fellowship" with the works of darkness, if he went back to fellowship with the works of darkness, he could lose his salvation. This could happen to many who are Christians, using Bibles that have errors in them.

Fellowship with God is what Jesus was speaking of in John 7:39 when He said, "He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water." The living water Jesus is speaking of is the "living Word of God," flowing like a river out of our new spirit, where God dwells. Day and night, week after week, month after month, year after year, the Word of God is flowing out of our new spirit. This is a work of the Holy Spirit responding to our "fellowship" with God. When we have true "fellowship" with God, the Holy Spirit is on the other end, bringing the true Word of God out of our spirit (which is in our belly) like a river.

Praise God! You can have true "fellowship" with God. It is all up to you, if you want to walk in the Light as He is in the Light, you can. God says you can and God cannot lie. You do your part of "abiding in the Word," and you will have "fellowship" with God. The Holy Spirit will, teach, guide, comfort, lead, and help you all the way.

When you have true "fellowship" with God, the Holy Spirit will show you errors in the Bible caused by translators. I use the King James Version. Therefore, the Holy Spirit usually shows me errors in the King James version. But not always:

One day I was working on a job, paying attention to what I was doing, when all of a sudden there came from my spirit these words, "look up 1 John 5:7 in a certain Bible." In my mind, I thought, why look it up in a certain Bible, I always use the King James Version? Yet, knowing that came from my spirit, and I must prove all things (1 Thess. 5:21), and try the spirits if they are of God (1 John 4:1), I stopped working and went and got that certain Bible to look up that verse. Would you believe, that verse is not in that certain Bible? Then I found that there are many verses left out of some of these newer Bibles; besides 1 John 5:7, there is Matthew 18:11, John 5:3,4, Acts 8:37, half of Romans 8:1, just to mention a few of the important ones.

There was a time, while I was working on a job, not praying, or reading the Word, or studying; that these words come to me from my spirit, "God is Spirit." It took me by surprise, being my mind was not on anything concerning "God is Spirit." Yet, many times when these revelations come to me the Holy Spirit also brings to remembrance things I have been taught by the Word and things I have been taught by man. I knew this was referring to John 4:24.

I knew for years that many have been teaching a doctrine that "man is a spirit" and has a soul and a body. That teaching does not agree with the Scriptures. It is a result of men, "reasoning with their minds" according to what they have read in an English translation, which is incorrect. I knew for years, those who taught that doctrine got their idea that "man is a spirit," from the way the King James Bible is worded in John 4:24, which says, "God is a Spirit."

When the words "God is Spirit," came to me that day, I stopped doing what I was doing and went to my Bible. In checking it out in the Greek, I saw that the words "is" and "a" were added by the translators when translating from Greek to English. They are not a part of the original Greek writings. After seeing that, I looked at the New King James Version. They corrected that error, and translated it to "God is Spirit."

It was good to see that the New King James Version corrected that error, but then they created some other errors in other places. As an example in the New King James Version they changed the wording in 1 John 4:2 from, "Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God," to "...has come in the flesh...." This totally changes what the Holy Spirit had inspired the apostle John to write. "Is come" in the flesh, means that if a person is truly born again, their confessing will be "Jesus Christ is come, and is presently dwelling in them today." Anyone who cannot freely confess that Jesus is in them today, is not truly born again.

By changing the wording to "has come," they are saying "yes, Jesus did come in the flesh about 2,000 years ago." That is the antichrist spirit that was in the world already when John wrote his Epistle. That same antichrist spirit is working today, changing the Word of God in many translations of the Bible, making the Word of God of none effect.

It takes "fellowship"with God, whereby the Holy Spirit can teach and guide you to know the truth "what God said," rather than what man said. The Holy Spirit will also bring to your remembrance things that He taught you in the past (John 14:26).

Remember, if you get out of "fellowship" at any time, do as the younger son of the father in Luke 15. Repent and return to your True Father. He is still your True Father, and He will welcome you back, even rejoicing in your return.

Another major part of "fellowship" with God is spoken of in Isaiah 28:9-13, where it says,

Whom shall he teach knowledge? and whom shall he make to understand doctrine? them that are weaned from the milk, and drawn from the breasts.

For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little:

For with stammering lips and another tongue will he speak to this people.

To whom he said, This is the rest wherewith ye may cause the weary to rest; and this is the refreshing: yet they would not hear.

But the word of the LORD was unto them precept upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little; that they might go, and fall backward, and be broken, and snared, and taken.

Look at what it is saying? How can God teach us knowledge, or give us understanding of true doctrines when we are still trying to do our own will of the flesh...and for some they say it is God. Before God can work with us, He must get us away from our ways, our thinking, our preconceived ideas of how God should do things. Religious people have their own idea of what God should do, and how He should do it. They want to teach others before they have knowledge and understanding of the True God.

The apostle Paul made mention of this in Hebrew 5:12, saying, "For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat." First, God has to make changes in our lives from the inside out by working from our spirit, to change our thinking, ideas, and ways of life.

God does this by helping us to "speak in tongues, and pray in the Spirit," where our natural mind has no understanding. When we pray in the Spirit, we authorize the Holy Spirit to make intercession for us, in speaking words that our mind does not understand.

Our praying in the Spirit authorizes God to do His will in our lives. God knows what His will is for our lives, and when we authorize Him to work in our lives, He can make the necessary changes needed to do His will.

Our will must be broken, before God can do His will in our lives. Therefore, "the word of the LORD was unto them precept upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little; that they might go, and fall backward, and be broken, and snared, and taken" (Isa. 28:13). God must continue to teach us, "precept upon precept...line upon line...here a little, and there a little,"

until we are broken of our will of the flesh. Then God can use us to do His will.

"Speaking in other tongues" and "praying in the Spirit" is true fellowship with God, where God is our Teacher, Helper, Guide, Leader, and Comforter. In Romans 8:26,27 it says,

Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.

And he that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because he maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God.

Praying in the Spirit is similar to "speaking in tongues." In 1 Corinthians 14:2 it says, "For he that speaketh in an unknown tongue speaketh not unto men, but unto God: for no man understandeth him; howbeit in the spirit he speaketh mysteries." When we are praying in the Spirit, we are speaking to God and no man understands what we are saying. Praying in the Spirit is "True Fellowship with God." No one else is involved when we are praying in the Spirit.

Looking at Romans 8:26,27 you will notice that when you are praying in the Spirit, the Holy Spirit searches your heart (the innermost part of your new spirit), and finds the perfect will of God for your life. When He sees the perfect will of God for your "individual" life, He makes intercession for you according to the will of God. Can you find any better way to pray?

The Word of God for those who are born again says, "Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit..." (Eph. 6:18). This is God's preferred way of praying. When we are praying in the Spirit, we are having "Perfect fellowship with God."

Notice how important it is to pray! In Luke 18:1, Luke wrote, "And he spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint." Do not faint means "do not get weak, or be weary." In other words, keep praying and do not stop.

Having "fellowship" with God by praying in the Spirit does many things for us. Besides "fellowship" it builds up our faith. Jude 1:20 says, "But ye, beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Ghost."

In 1 Corinthians 14:14 it says, "For if I pray in an unknown tongue, my spirit prayeth, but my understanding is unfruitful." When it says, "my spirit prayeth," it is telling us that it is the Holy Spirit working in our new spirit that is helping us pray. Our natural mind may not know what we are praying, but knowing what it says in Romans 8:26,27, and 1 Corinthians 14:2, we know we are having "perfect fellowship" with God. Anything that is perfect cannot get any better.

True fellowship with God begins when we see God as our Father, and ourselves as "little children." In Matthew 18:3, Jesus said, "Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven." God does not need children in His kingdom who think they should be telling God what He should do. Just as an earthly father does not need a three-year-old child telling him how to raise children. First, God must get us to "deny ourselves," then He can change our ways, our thinking, our habits, and our lifestyle. Once we learn to let God do His will, instead of us trying to get God to do our will, then we will have true "fellowship" with God.

These two, "abiding in the Word, and praying in the Spirit" are the two most important ways to have fellowship with God. When we have "fellowship" with God, we are walking in the Light. In 1 John 1:7 it tells us, "if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin." We are cleansed from "all sin" when we walk in the light. That is what true fellowship with God can do for Christians, who walk in the Light.

If you do not "pray in the spirit," or "speak in tongues," you truly need to receive the Baptism in the Holy Spirit that Jesus spoke to His disciples about. Jesus said in Luke 11:9-13,

I say unto you, Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you.

For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.

If a son shall ask bread of any of you that is a father, will he give him a stone? or if he ask a fish, will he for a fish give him a serpent?

Or if he shall ask an egg, will he offer him a scorpion?

If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?

Jesus was making it as plain as He could. If anyone would ask the Father for the Holy Spirit, He would give them the Holy Spirit. God the Father will not give anyone anything other than the Holy Spirit if they ask for the Holy Spirit.

In John 12:15,16, Jesus said,

If ye love me, keep my commandments.

And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever.

Jesus said, if you love Him you will keep His commandments. If you keep His commandments, He will pray the Father for you, and the Father will give you the Comforter, which is the Holy Spirit (John 14:26).

In Acts 1:4,5 it says,

And, being assembled together with them, commanded them that they should not depart from Jerusalem, but wait for the promise of the Father, which, saith he, ye have heard of me.

For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence.

Again, Jesus said they should not depart from Jerusalem until they received the Baptism in the Holy Spirit. The Baptism in the Holy Spirit is so important that Jesus commanded them to wait until they received the Holy Spirit. Then in Acts 1:8, Jesus explained one important reason for receiving the Holy Spirit. He said, "But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth."

The power to be witnesses unto Jesus comes by the Holy Spirit working within us. This is done by us letting the Holy Spirit give us the words to speak in every situation. It is called, "the utterance of the Holy Spirit."

When the disciples received the Holy Spirit on Pentecost Day in Acts 2:4, it says, "And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance." The speaking is not in your native language. It is an "utterance of the Holy Spirit from within you." They are not words you understand. They are sounds that make no sense to you in your mind. But they are words you speak to God, by the unction of the Holy Spirit within you.

Notice something of importance in Acts 2:4, it says "And they...began to speak..." They did the speaking. The Holy Spirit did not do the speaking. To receive the speaking in tongues, "You must begin to speak." If you do not begin to speak, nothing will come out of your mouth. If you wait for the Holy Spirit, you'll wait for years and years. The Holy Spirit is not going to do the speaking for you. You must do the speaking. When you begin to speak, the Holy Spirit will give you the utterance. The words will come up out of your belly. But normally not until you first "begin to speak." This is important to understand. God only does "exactly as He says in His Word."

In 1 Corinthians 14:2 it says, "For he that speaketh in an unknown tongue speaketh not unto men, but unto God: for no man understandeth him; howbeit in the spirit he speaketh mysteries." The sounds come from your belly, where the Holy Spirit is in your spirit. You do the speaking, but the sounds come from the Holy Spirit within you. He gives you the utterance.

This will be the beginning of your future "fellowship" with God "in the Spirit." "Praying in the Spirit!" From the day you receive your prayer language in the Spirit, use it daily to keep up your "fellowship" with God.

If you haven't received the Baptism in the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking in tongues, you can do it right now! With a sincere desire in your heart to do the will of God and pray in the Spirit, just ask the Father,

"Father, Give me the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking in tongues. I thank you for answering my prayer. I will now speak with tongues as the Spirit gives me utterance."

Then start speaking as the sounds come out of your mouth, you will know they are coming from your belly, where the Holy Spirit dwells. Continue to speak in tongues, every day, for hours a day. Every day you pray in the Spirit the Holy Spirit will help you, by giving you the utterance. This will build up your faith and will also give you understanding of mysteries of God of which you do not know (1 Cor. 14:2, Jude 1:20).

Fellowship with God is the most important part of our living here on earth today. Through fellowship with God, the Holy Spirit teaches us all things, and helps us in every area of our lives. It is very important in these last days to maintain our "fellowship" in the Word and in prayer. There are many ways that Satan comes against Christians today. False operations of the spirit are one of his greatest deceptions in the churches today.

Let me tell how the Holy Spirit helps us to identify false teachings which in turn cause many to get into false spiritual operations. One day I was listening to a certain preacher tell how he hears from God. He said, "he prays in the Spirit" a few minutes, then he asks God to interpret what he said. "In his mind," he receives his answer from God as to what he was praying about while praying in the Spirit. He said, "he teaches all his people, that is the way to hear from God, when you need answers."

He said that he got that from 1 Corinthians 14:13,14. When he said that, in my spirit there was a sick feeling, I knew there was something wrong about what he said. (A sick feeling in your spirit is the Holy Spirit alerting you of something that is not right).

Sometime later, it came from my spirit, "look up 1 Corinthians 14:13." As I looked it up, I then noticed in the King James Version it says, "Wherefore let him that speaketh in an unknown tongue pray that he may interpret." If you look in the Greek, you will find that the word "unknown" is not there. Men have added that word themselves (not having full understanding of what the Holy Spirit inspired to be written).

But, more important than that was that it said, "...that speaketh in a tongue..." It does not say, "that prayeth" in a tongue, it says "speaketh" in a tongue. What I had not realized was that "speaking in a tongue" and "praying in the Spirit" are not the same thing. Speaking in a tongue is "speaking as the Holy Spirit gives the utterance." When we "pray in the Spirit," we do the praying, from our spirit as Paul put it "my spirit prayeth," Look at 1 Corinthians 14:14 closely, "For if I pray in an unknown tongue, my spirit prayeth, but my understanding is unfruitful." Did you notice that Paul changed the subject between verses 13 and 14. In verse 14, he is not talking about "speaking in a tongue," He is taking about "praying in the Spirit."

Praying in the Spirit is an operation of man, from his spirit. Speaking in a tongue is an operation of the Holy Spirit, started by the Holy Spirit, not by man. Speaking in a tongue, is as the Holy Spirit wills (1 Cor. 12:11).

"Speaking in tongues" is a ministry gift of the Holy Spirit to the body of Christ. "Praying in the Spirit" is a gift to the individual, to help the individual build up his faith (Jude 1:20). Also, to pray when he does not know what to pray for, or how to pray (Rom. 8:26). Praying in the spirit is the preferred way to pray in the New Covenant (Eph. 6:18).

If we study the New Testament Scriptures closely, we find that every time "speaking in tongues" is mentioned it is referring to an unction of the Holy Spirit. It includes speaking in a language unknown by the person doing the speaking, therefore, it needs to be interpreted (1 Cor. 12:10, 28,30; 14:2,4,5,6, etc.) As in 1 Corinthians 14:2, it includes speaking by the unction of the Holy Spirit in a language no man understands. According to 1 Corinthians 12:28,29, not every Christian "speaks in tongues."

Yet, there is another gift for every Christian, that is the gift of "praying in the Spirit." This is a prayer language that everyone who is baptized in the Holy Spirit should have. In Ephesians 6:18 it says, "Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit..." In Jude 1:20 it says, "But ye, beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Ghost." This is prayer. Something we do as Christians of our own ability, "praying from our spirit."

In the Greek, there is a difference between "speaking in tongues," and "praying in the Spirit." If you study the Scriptures in the Greek, you will see the difference.

Our "praying in the Spirit" should not be interpreted. It is very likely, when Christians try to interpret their "praying in the Spirit" another spirit (not the Holy Spirit), will give them the interpretation.

Notice something else. When the Holy Spirit gives the interpretation of a tongue, it comes from your spirit, not from your mind. The Holy Spirit operates from your spirit, not your mind.

When Christians receive what they think is an interpretation of their "praying in the Spirit," it comes from their mind, not their spirit. Satan works from their mind. The Holy Spirit works from their spirit.

Christians should learn to listen to their spirit, not their mind. Deception comes from our mind, but the Holy Spirit will never deceive us. He ministers to us from our spirit.

The whole issue in 1 Corinthians 14 is "speaking in tongues without an interpretation." If the ministry gift of "speaking in tongues" is in operation, there should also be the ministry gift of "interpretation of tongues." When the Holy Spirit brings forth a tongue, He is also ready to bring forth the interpretation. It is up to the individual to respond to the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit will not force a person to give the interpretation. If someone else does not give the interpretation, then "pray that you may give the interpretation" (1 Cor. 14:13).

Christians need to "Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth" (2 Tim. 2:15). Christians should learn how to please God, not man.

With our spirit, we serve God (Rom. 1:9). With our mind we please men. We must learn to know the difference between our mind and our spirit.

Can you imagine how many Christians have been deceived by spirits that operate from the natural minds of those who permit them to? If we stay in "fellowship" with God in "studying the Word" and "praying in the Spirit," the Holy Spirit will alert us whenever there is something that is not right. Don't trust men, trust and rely upon the Holy Spirit. He is God and He is working for you, not against you.

SALVATION



"Fellowship" with God brings "salvation." These two work together to set us free of all the works of the devil.

Relationship and fellowship are not salvation. The word "salvation" in the Greek is "soteria," which comes from a primary Greek word "sozo," meaning, "deliver or protect." Therefore, salvation means "deliverance and protection." Through "salvation" we are delivered and protected by God.

Healing is a part of salvation. If we need healing for our bodies or our minds, we need "salvation" (deliverance and protection). A person who is "born again," having "relationship" with God, still needs "salvation." In Acts 2:47 it says, "...And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved." Note: The word "saved," in Acts 2:47 is "sozo," meaning, "deliver or protect." When Christians were added to the church (which is the LORD'S body), they were born again. They become "related" to God (God becomes their true Father). "Relationship" is established by the new birth. All those who are "born again" are added to the Church, which is the LORD'S body.

Once a person is "born again," they need to be saved. They need "salvation." They need to be "delivered and protected" from all the works of the enemy.

Many have used the word "salvation" incorrectly, saying it means the same as "born again." But, that is not true at all. Salvation is a work of God. It begins with "the Lamb, slain from the foundation of the world" (Rev. 13:8). Even though man had not sinned until Genesis 3:6, God had already known what Satan would do to man before the foundation of this world. Therefore, the sin issue was declared finished from the foundation of the world. Yet, the final accomplishment of the "shedding of the Blood of the Lamb," was not completed until Jesus went to the Cross. Therefore, the new birth could not take place in man until Jesus was the firstborn from the dead (Rom. 8:29, Col. 1:15).

Had man not sinned in the garden of Eden, "salvation" would not have been needed. But, by the foreknowledge of God, He declared "the Lamb, slain from the foundation of the world" (Rev. 13:8). By this, all who were born into this world were given an equal opportunity for "salvation." Those before the flood of Noah, those before the Law of Moses, and those before Jesus went to the Cross, all had the same opportunity of "salvation." Those who established "fellowship" with God were given the opportunity for "salvation."

Salvation is obtained by "grace, through faith." Ephesians 2:8,9 says,

For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:

Not of works, lest any man should boast.

How could Enoch walk with God, and be taken up, even before the flood? By grace through faith! It says in Hebrews 11:5, "By faith Enoch was translated that he should not see death; and was not found, because God had translated him: for before his translation he had this testimony, that he pleased God."

Salvation and fellowship work together (fellowship helps to receive salvation). In 1 John 1:6,7, we see that "fellowship" brings "salvation." Look at what it says,

If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth:

But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.

Enoch walked with God, and by it he had "fellowship" with God, which "cleansed him from all sin," producing "salvation."

One of the best examples of how to receive "salvation" in the Word of God, is in Romans 10:9,10, which is written to the Saints at Rome, and all who are saints everywhere. The Epistle of Paul to the Romans, is not written to those who are not Christians. It is written to Christians...

Romans 10:9,10 says,

That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.

For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

This confession is made unto "salvation," which is confessing what God accomplished through Jesus Christ on the Cross (by the shedding of the blood of the Lamb, and the raising Him again from the dead). We believe in our heart and confess with our mouth what Jesus did for us, by becoming our substitute (paying the price for all our infirmities, sins, iniquities, sicknesses, and diseases). Jesus took them all upon Himself, and by what He did, we are free. When we believe that in our heart and confess that with our mouth, we will be delivered and protected by the Word of God.

Thereby, "salvation" is deliverance and protection by God from all our enemies. Salvation is not just for Christians, it is for everyone and anyone who will believe God's Word.

In the Old Testament the word "salvation" is used in the King James Version 65 times. The Hebrew word is "y@shuw'ah/yesh-oo'- aw.," meaning, "deliverance; hence, aid, victory, prosperity." God has always "delivered and protected" those who would call upon Him. In Exodus 15:1,2 it says,

Then sang Moses and the children of Israel this song unto the LORD, and spake, saying, I will sing unto the LORD, for he hath triumphed gloriously: the horse and his rider hath he thrown into the sea.

The LORD is my strength and song, and he is become my salvation: he is my God, and I will prepare him an habitation; my father's God, and I will exalt him.

It says in verse two, "The LORD is my strength and song, and he is become my salvation..." All throughout the Old Testament you will find evidence of "salvation." In 1 Samuel 11:13 it says, "And Saul said, There shall not a man be put to death this day: for to day the LORD hath wrought salvation in Israel." In 2 Samuel 22:3 it says. "The God of my rock; in him will I trust: he is my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my high tower, and my refuge, my saviour; thou savest me from violence." In 2 Samuel 22:47 it says, "The LORD liveth; and blessed be my rock; and exalted be the God of the rock of my salvation." We could go on and on throughout the Old Testament mentioning all the times it talks about "salvation."

You will also find evidence of salvation mentioned in the New Testament, concerning those of the Old Testament. In 1 Peter 3:20 it says, "Which sometime were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water." Peter wrote that Noah and his family were "saved."

The name "Joshua" in the Old Testament is the same as the name "Jesus" in the New Testament. The meaning of that name is "Jehovah is Salvation." The name Joshua in the Old Testament signified "salvation, deliverance."

Thereby, "salvation" means that Jesus saved us and delivered us from the works of the devil. All throughout the Old Testament, people were saved and delivered. But none of these were "born again." Born again is "relationship" not "salvation," not "fellowship." Each of these are different from each other. They do not mean the same thing.

"Salvation" works to restore "fellowship." When a person is out of "fellowship" with God, they can call upon the name of the LORD and be "saved." In Romans 10:13 it says, "For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved." This is not just for the New Testament. It was already in the Old Testament. In Joel 2:32 it says, "And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the LORD shall be delivered..." The Children of Israel did this many times in the Old Testament. All throughout the book of Judges, they would call upon the LORD or God and He would save them from their enemies. That is, He would deliver them and protect them.

Even though those of the Old Covenant were "saved," they were not "born again." They had a Covenant with the LORD God, and whenever they called upon Him, He saved them. Yet, none of them were born again, making God their true Father. They were not "related" to God by birth. They could not enter the Kingdom of God, because they were not born again.

Jesus said to Nicodemus in John 3:3, "Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God." Then in verse five, Jesus said, "Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God." A person must be "born again" to receive "relationship" with God, whereby God is their true Father.

Even John the Baptist was not "born again." Jesus said this about John the Baptist, "Verily I say unto you, Among them that are born of women there hath not risen a greater than John the Baptist: notwithstanding he that is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he" (Matt. 11:11). Why are those who are in the kingdom of God greater than John the Baptist? Simply, because God is their true Father. Jesus was John the Baptist's "Savior," but John was not a child of God.

Because of poor teaching in the Churches today, by those who do not get their information from the Holy Spirit and the true Scriptures, many are deceived. By saying, "born again" and "salvation" are the same thing. This is not of God, but of men. Men, who teach what they have heard other men teach, and have not received it from the Holy Spirit make the Word of God of none-effect.

When Adam and Eve were in the garden of Eden, before they sinned, they did not need "salvation." But, they did need to become "born again," and become "children of God, by the new birth." That is why the Tree of Life was already in the garden of Eden, when man was placed in the garden. It was there so that they could "freely eat of the Tree of Life."

Had Adam and Eve eaten of the Tree of Life, they would have obtained "eternal life." Look first, what it says in Genesis 2:16, "And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat." Of every tree, including the Tree of Life, "thou mayest freely eat." Now look at what it says in Genesis 3:22, "...lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever." Eating of the Tree of Life brings the new birth, and those who continue to eat of that tree will live forever.

The new birth is a separate manifestation of the Word of God. The Word of God manifests in "salvation," for those who need deliverance and protection. The Word of God manifests in "a new birth" in those who eat of the Tree of Life. The Word of God manifests in "fellowship" with God in those who "walk in the Light as He is in the Light" (1 John 1:5).

God's Word never fails. It always accomplishes whatsoever He said it would accomplish; whether it is "relationship," "fellowship," or "salvation." Christians should know what the Word of God is talking about, before they go off doing what they see others do, and following the teachings of men.

Salvation includes the forgiveness of sins. Let us see what the Scripture says about sin. To begin with, let us look at 1 John 3:2,3, which says,

"Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.

And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure."

In 1 John 3:9, it says, "Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin (continue in sin); for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin (continue in sin), because he is born of God."

In 1 John 3:21-24, it says,

Beloved, if our heart condemn us not, then have we confidence toward God.

And whatsoever we ask, we receive of him, because we keep his commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in his sight.

And this is his commandment, That we should believe on the name of his Son Jesus Christ, and love one another, as he gave us commandment.

And he that keepeth his commandments dwelleth in him, and he in him. And hereby we know that he abideth in us, by the Spirit which he hath given us.

This is the Word of God concerning those who are born again.

EXPERIENCING ETERNAL LIFE



Eternal life is a reality of life beyond natural life. When a person is truly born again into the family of God, they become "one with God." It is not something you hear about or learn about in Church. It is a living that brings peace and joy into your complete being.

One of the first things you will notice is your love for the Word of God. Once you are born again of "the incorruptible Seed, which is the Word of God," there is a love and desire for the Word of God dwelling in you. The Word of God becomes more important to you than anything else. You are drawn to it in such a way that you forget about many other things you desired over the years, and instead desire to spend time studying the Word of God. The Word of God becomes alive in your inner being.

This is normal, it happens to everyone who is truly born again. You have a new spirit within you. That new spirit contains all that God is, and God has become a part of you. God lives by His Word. John 1:1 tells us, "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God." God has not changed. He never will change. God has come into your life and you and God are one.

Jesus said, "...If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed...And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free" (John 8:31,32). The word "know" comes from a Greek word "ginosko," meaning "to know absolutely." This word carries with it a greater knowledge than normal, it includes knowing by experience. By this we can see that eternal life goes beyond head knowledge (the knowing comes from our spirit).

Once a person is truly born again, they experience the Word of God in their inner being, drawing them to the written Word of God. This is the beginning of eternal life.

Jesus warns us of Satan's attacks upon a person "immediately," once a person receives the Word in his heart. In Mark 4:14,15 Jesus said,

The sower soweth the word.

And these are they by the way side, where the word is sown; but when they have heard, Satan cometh immediately, and taketh away the word that was sown in their hearts.

We must be very careful, not to let Satan take away the Word that was sown in our heart. Satan takes the Word away by keeping a person from "abiding in the Word." Satan uses every means he has, working on the minds of a new born child of God to keep them from "abiding in the Word." Immediately, Satan comes with thoughts in a persons mind, even using other people to discourage and pull them away from the written Word. I had a Pastor of the Church I attended for years tell me, "it's just an imaginary thing, it will ware off, and you will soon be back to normal." God will do all He can to help you, and I knew I had to leave that Church to continue on with the LORD.

Jesus continued to explain Satan's attempts in Mark 4:16,17 saying,

And these are they likewise which are sown on stony ground; who, when they have heard the word, immediately receive it with gladness;

And have no root in themselves, and so endure but for a time: afterward, when affliction or persecution ariseth for the word's sake, immediately they are offended.

If Satan cannot steal the Word immediately, he will wage his next war against your mind. You know, beyond all doubt, that you are born again, then Satan comes with "afflictions, and persecutions, that you will become offended." You must stay in the Word every day, as much as you can. Study, and study, and pray in the Spirit, so you know the truth that will set you free of Satan's attacks.

Jesus then tells of Satan's next attack in Mark 4:18,19, saying,

And these are they which are sown among thorns; such as hear the word,

And the cares of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the lusts of other things entering in, choke the word, and it becometh unfruitful.

Here is where Satan gets those who have endured for some time. If they have not made God the Father their source for everything, it is easy for Satan to get them with "the cares of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the lusts of other things."

They usually call these things "blessings." They say "God is blessing them beyond measure." What they do not understand is that they are beginning to look to the world and the things of this world, believing God wants them to be blessed with worldly blessings.

What's sad, is that their interest is in "worldly blessings" more than what God has planned for them from the foundation of the world. They talk about all that they are doing for God, but it's what "they are doing," not "God working through them by His power." God is no longer their source, but now it's people and their ability to get others to give to them, blessing them with wealth and worldly pleasures.

Satan is still operating in this world. He has not changed, he is still the same devil he always was. When Christians start seeking "worldly blessings" they could be getting confused as to who is blessing them. They say it is God, but how do they spell that word, with a little "g" or a capital "G?"

I heard one Preacher say one time, "God is not against you having riches and wealth. All the gold and silver is His, and he put it here for Christians to enjoy!" In my spirit, I got a sick feeling, something is wrong with that statement. Mark 4:19 tells us it is the devil that wants to bless us with "riches, and the lusts of other things."

God wants to be our God, our Father, supplying all our needs, but not our greed. Let me tell you about God, my Father. In 1981, just after I received the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking in tongues, I was in need of finances. I was in the television repair business and it was the last week in May. On Tuesday, the day following Memorial Day, I was watching television at noon. There was an evangelist on, telling about a situation where he needed one hundred thousand dollars to finish a project.

All of a sudden from my spirit I heard "send ____ one hundred dollars!" It wasn't an audible voice, but it was the same as if it was. I knew I needed about three thousand dollars by the fifteenth of June and did not have anywhere near that amount. I said, "LORD, I don't have one hundred dollars to spare."

The next day, about noon, from my spirit came these same words, "send ____ one hundred dollars!" I said, "LORD, I don't have one hundred dollars to send, I need three thousand dollars by the fifteenth of June, if I had it, You know I would send it." After I said that, I began to check all the money I had. I totaled everything up; my home money, my personal checking account, my shop checking account, and my shop cash. I had about six hundred dollars total.

Again, on Thursday about noon, from my spirit came these same words, "send ____ one hundred dollars!" This time I answered, "LORD, I'll send the money, but You will have to take care of the three thousand dollars I need by the fifteenth of June." I wrote out the check and went to the corner mail box and mailed it. When I was entering the door to the shop, the telephone was ringing. I got one phone call after another for service work.

I started working long hours every day, trying to get all the jobs done on time. By the fifteenth of June I had more than three thousand dollars. By the first of July I had another one thousand dollars, and by the end of July I took in about five thousand dollars more than any year previous during those three months.

God knows when we have a need, and He wants to supply all our needs. In Matthew 6:32 Jesus said, "...your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things." Some Christians think you have to tell God what you need. But, does a little child have to tell his earthly father everything he needs before his father will take care of him? God will do everything He can, according to His Word to help those who are His children. I did not pray that the LORD would help me. I didn't even say a word about my financial situation at that time. I was concerned about it, but I did not ask God to help me at all. God is my Father, and He cares about my situations here on earth, more than any earthly father cares. God worked it out to take care of me when I needed help.

We should not be so engrossed in the things of this world that we start to trust in the worlds system more than our Father in heaven. We are told in 1 John 2:15-17,

Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.

For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.

And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.

What will happen to us once the world and the lust thereof are passed away?

In Revelation 3:15-17 Jesus said,

I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot.

So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth.

Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:

These verses are in the same Bible many are using to talk about their great "blessings, of worldly possessions." How they say, God is blessing them.

Do not let yourself get caught in Satan's snare. Get to know God as your True Father and keep Him "the source for everything." Keep His Word coming into your being, studying and meditating on His written Word. The Word is the source of your eternal life. Keep up the praying in the Spirit, and let the Holy Spirit make intercession for you (Rom. 8:26,27). Let the Holy Spirit teach, guide, help, lead, and comfort you. In 1 John 2:27 it tells us, "the anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye shall abide in him."

We must maintain our "fellowship" in the Word and in prayer, if we are to endure to the end. Jesus said in Matthew 24:11,13,

And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many.

And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.

But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.

There is a battle going on in the lives of Christians at all times. Satan is operating from his position in the "lower heavens," that is, the first and second heavens. Satan cannot operate in the third heavens where the throne of God is. He was cast out of the third heavens and cannot return (Isa. 14:12, Ezek. 28:17-19, Luke 10:18).

Satan cannot attack your new spirit. God dwells in your new spirit in His fullness (Col. 2:8,9). Satan can accuse you to the Father, but he cannot attack your spirit. Yet, Satan's accusations about you to the Father will be of no avail, for the Father will not believe any false accusations concerning His Children. Jesus paid the price for all our infirmities, sins, iniquities, sicknesses, and diseases. In your new spirit, you are perfect, perfected by God. Satan has nothing on you in your new spirit.

Being a "living soul" and still having a "body of flesh," Satan can and will attack your mind and your body. These two areas of your complete being are still open for Satan's attacks.

God has given us the responsibility to overcome Satan in these areas, yet not without His help. We do not fight Satan with carnal weapons "natural, worldly weapons." Our weapons are "mighty through God" (2 Cor. 10:4). Do not even think about defeating the enemy using any other weapons, they do not work. Our weapons are "the Word of God, the Blood of Jesus, and the Name of Jesus," all empowered by the Holy Spirit.

Most of the attacks of Satan will come against "our mind." Our mind is the primary functioning part of our "living soul." If Satan can control our mind, he can control our soul and our body. Once that happens, we will no longer have "fellowship" with God. Loss of "fellowship" could bring loss of "eternal life." That is why it is so important that we battle Satan in our mind. In 2 Corinthians 10:5 it says, "Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ." Every thought that does not agree with "the Word of God," must be cast down, completely destroyed. We must obey the "Spirit of Christ" within us, not the thoughts that come from without.

Thoughts come from two different locations, from the world and the spirits of this world, and from our spirit, where Christ dwells in us. We must learn to know, where our thoughts are coming from, within our spirit, or otherwise. Only the thoughts that come from within our spirit are to be held onto.

Many who reason with their minds will disagree. But, remember what Jesus said in Matthew 6:25 "Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment?"

God is your Father, and He will bring thoughts to your mind from your spirit, concerning your life, what you should eat, what you should drink, what you should wear. From your spirit, your Father will care for you like a good earthly father cares for a little child.

We must learn to know what thoughts come from our spirit and what thoughts come from another source. Many Christians do not know God as their Father. They still operate from their mind the way they did before they were born again. Then, when they start to recognize the difference between natural things and spiritual things, all of a sudden, they think everything that is spiritual is of God. This is dangerous, to say the least.

We must bring every thought into subjection to "the Word of God." Let me tell of one instance: I met a person who said he was a Christian. In talking to him, he said, "I prayed to God that He would help me win the Lottery." Then he said, "God told me, I first have to buy a ticket." Was that God? Without question, that was not God. This person does not know the difference between the voice of God and the voice of another.

People who are looking for money, and do not have a need are not listening to their spirit. They are operating from their mind only. James 4:3 says, "Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts."

God does not promise to supply our "greed," only our need. Satan, the god of this world wants to supply all our "greed" (Mark 4:19). Those who make "God their Father" do not need to win the Lottery.

Let me tell you of a brother in the LORD who had a need. A Christian brother was in Bible School, and needed money to pay his bills. He said that he and other students went into prayer. He laid his Bible on the seat of a chair and kneeled on the floor, with his chest on the Bible. He prayed for some time, and when he and the other students finished praying, he got up, picked up his Bible, and on the chair, under his Bible, was the money he had prayed for.

How did it get there? He did not move from laying his chest on his Bible all the time he prayed. He asked the other students, did they do something, that the money got on the chair under his Bible while he was praying? They all said, they did not do anything, it had to be God answering his prayer. That is an example of God the Father caring for His Children.

This is why it is so important that we maintain our "fellowship" with God in studying the Word of God and praying in the Spirit. Those who do not "study, and pray daily," will easily be led astray by the spirits of this world.

NOW WHAT?



Here we are, in this world. What are we going to do the rest of our lives in this world? Are we going to "Receive Jesus Christ as LORD and Savior?"

If we have already received Jesus Christ as LORD and Savior, will we "receive the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking in tongues?" Will we receive the "power to become witnesses to Jesus?"

If we have already received the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking in tongues, now what are we going to do?

This book is only a quick look at what the Bible truly says about "relationship, fellowship, and salvation." Yet, it should be a good basis to start with, for anyone who is truly born again. That is, anyone who is truly a "child of God." This book is for all of those who "God is their Father" to help them know the will of God for their lives here on earth.

If you haven't experienced the working of God from your spirit, helping, leading, guiding, teaching, and comforting you, you should study more about how God works in our lives.

There are many books, written by Merle E. Koepke available FREE on the Internet at www.handsforjesus.org, and www.handsforjesus.cc. In each of these books you will find many things that can help you to understand the Scriptures, and how God is working all things together for the good of those who love God (Rom. 8:29). Get these books and "Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth" (2 Tim. 2:15). You don't need the approval of men, but you do need the approval of GOD!

Once you understand how Christians are taught by God, then you will experience life in the Spirit. The Holy Spirit will teach you things you never knew. Everything the Holy Spirit teaches will agree with the written Word of God, and the Blood of Jesus Christ.

But be aware of what is happening among many who say they are Christians today. Within the Churches today there are many who are not interested in what the Bible teaches. Just recently it came from my spirit, "You cannot help those who do not want help. God tried it, and it didn't work for Him. I (Jesus) tried it and it didn't work for Me either." Then I was reminded of Cain, the first son of Adam and Eve. The LORD God tried to help Cain, but he did not want any help, thereby he listened to the devil and went and slew Abel, his brother.

This is what Satan is doing in the Churches today. Satan is not coming against the Churches today, he is joining them and working from the inside to destroy those who have no knowledge of who they are in Christ. Satan uses all kinds of operations to deceive and destroy Christians. He uses the teachings of men, and false spiritual operations among those who others think they are great leaders in the Churches today. Satan uses those who teach what they have heard others teach and have not received their information from the Holy Spirit. Satan has many Christians following him, thinking they are following God. He has blinded the minds of those who do not believe the "True Gospel."

There are three major, different, "so-called gospels" being preached today among those who call themselves Christians. The "True Gospel" is a "righteousness gospel." That is "God is in control of everything, and we agree with God concerning His righteousness." The "True Gospel gives God all the glory, honor, praise, and admiration for what He has done for us though Jesus Christ, His Son." The "True Gospel" teaches that we are Truly "Children of God," by the new birth. We have "power over all the works of the devil," in Jesus' Name, and by His Blood, which He shed for us. Besides many other important facts, including "relationship to God, fellowship with God, and salvation from the works of the devil."

Another "so-called gospel" which is not really a gospel, that is preached among the Churches today is "a sin gospel." There are many variations of the "sin gospel." Basically, it starts at the sin of Adam and Eve in the garden of Eden. It is a gospel based upon "the knowledge of good and evil" (Gen. 2:9, 3:11). It starts just where Adam left off in Genesis 3:12, saying, "The woman whom thou gavest to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I did eat." Adam blamed Eve for his transgression, and Eve blamed the serpent for her transgressing.

The "sin gospel" is always blaming someone else for man's problems with the devil. It has many starting points, such as "Adam committed High Treason, and sold man out to the devil, and Satan became the god of this world." From there on, almost everything they teach includes a mixture of man's ideas and false statements.

They have not seen God's plan from the foundation of the world. Therefore, they teach what they have heard other men teach, and it does not agree with the written Word of God from Genesis through Revelation. This gospel glorifies the devil, and makes man a servant to sin.

Many Christians who preach a "sin gospel" will say they are preaching a "righteousness gospel." But, understand, you cannot mix error with truth and expect to have only truth. It will not work. You cannot make truth out of error, not matter how you try. That is the greatest deception Satan has. He used it to get Eve, and he still uses that same tactic today among Christians.

In teaching a "sin gospel," they keep Christians under condemnation, making them slaves to others. Some control others, and some are simply being controlled. That does not sound like what Jesus taught when He said, "If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed...And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free" (John 8:31,32).

The more they talk about sin, the more sin they get into. It is a cycle of "repentance, sin, and repentance again." Those who talk about sin usually end up in sin. Whereas, those who talk about "righteousness" usually end up living righteous.

A third gospel taught among Christian Churches today is actually a "doctrine of demons." It teaches that "Cain was not Adam's son, but was born of Eve and the serpent." Also that Cain was of the Devil, who came into this world by reproducing his likeness and image in mankind. Therefore, Cain is a descendant of Satan, the Devil (of the wicked one).

This so called gospel sometimes teaches that fallen angels had sex with women and produced giants (Gen. 6:2,3). They teach that these giants were like the sons of Anak, (Numb. 13:33). In their teachings they are speaking of large men, up to nine feet tall and over. The word "giants," in Genesis 6:3 is not speaking of large, tall men, it is speaking of "a bully or tyrant." Someone who is following the spirits of this world without respect for God. This so called gospel glorifies the devil and makes the Word of God of none effect.

Every person who is truly born again into the family of God still faces an enemy. In 2 Corinthians 10:3 it says, "For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh." There is a war going on in which Christians are involved. But this war is not to be fought with carnal weapons. We are not fighting against flesh and blood. Ephesians 6:12 says, "For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places."

Christians who do not understand a "righteousness gospel" will have many failures in the battle "against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places." Our victory over the enemy is in knowing "who we are in Christ," and how to "deny ourselves and follow Jesus." We must be "Led by the Holy Spirit," to have victory over the forces of darkness.

Christians, who have not followed the "righteousness gospel" that Jesus preached, and Paul preached, will be like a branch in the wind, blowing one way one time and another the next time, up and down, back and forth...

Until, Christians have totally, put their lives in the hands of God, by letting the Holy Spirit be their Leader, Helper, Guide, Teacher, and Comforter; they will experience defeat in certain areas of their lives. Christians must first deny themselves, before the Holy Spirit can have complete control in their lives. The more of this world Christians want to hold onto, the less the Holy Spirit can do to help them.

I would like to encourage you to have "fellowship" with God every day. Spend as much time as you can in His Word and in prayer. God has much more to offer you than this world has ever seen. With God as your Father, you have nothing to lose, and everything to gain, "there is nothing impossible for God."

Consider the difference between earth and heaven. Life on this earth is only for a short time, no matter how you look at it. There is no guarantee how long you will be here on earth. But, eternity is forever and ever. To be with God for eternity should be worth doing whatever God asks us to do.

Look at heaven for instance. God created everything, the heavens, and the earth complete. Now, besides all that, God is going to create a new heavens and a new earth. Wouldn't you want to be a part of that creation also?

In heaven, "there shall be no more curse: but the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it; and his servants shall serve him" (Rev. 22:3). "And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away" (Rev. 21:4).

Therefore, "in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus" (Eph. 2:7). God is Love, and it is His greatest desire to show His Children how much He loves them. For all eternity, God will pour out His love upon His Children in heaven.

God has given us His Word, and His Word cannot fail, neither can God lie. In Titus 1:2 it says, "In hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began." Before the world began, from the foundation of this world, God had a plan for those who will become His Children and spend eternity with Him, that "he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus" (Eph. 2:7).

Here on earth we face the devil and his demons constantly. They are always putting thoughts in our minds, and trying to inflect our bodies. We must resist the devil, or he will not flee from us. Temptations are everywhere, no matter where you are or where you look.

Just think how great it will be in heaven, no devil, no demons, just the love of God flowing into and out of everyone. God's love is so great that He wants to show us how much He loves us, giving us eternity in heaven with Him forever. A new heavens and a new earth, how wonderful and glorious it will be forever and ever with our Father in heaven.

Do not let the devil steal your inheritance. Do not let the things of this world become more important than your eternity in heaven. The Devil is still the same Devil he was in the beginning. He will tempt you with, "...the cares of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the lusts of other things..." (Mark 4:19). Do not trade these things for your inheritance in heaven.

In Colossians 3:1,2 it says,

If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God.

Set your affection (mind) on things above, not on things on the earth.

There is nothing in this world worth having, compared to eternity in heaven. Do not let the Devil tell you, you can have all the worldly blessings of this world, and everything God has promised in heaven also. There is something wrong with that idea. God is your Father, He knows what you have need of and what is best for you. Always, love, honor, and obey Him. He loves you!

SEEING THINGS AS GOD SEES THEM





We must "Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth" (2 Tim. 2:15). "God is not a man that He should lie..." (Num. 23:19). All things are revealed in His Word.

God is Love, and He has a plan for all eternity. Everything we need to know about God's plan is revealed in His Word. When we see things God's way, then we can understand His plan for us. In Isaiah 55:8 says, "my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD."

God is a "true Father." His plans for His Children are even greater than any human father can imagine, or think. God's plans for His Children do not stop at what this world has to offer. God has much better things to offer to His Children than worldly things. Ephesians 2:5-7 tells us,

Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)

And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus:

That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus.

As "True Children of God," we get to spend eternity with the Father in heaven. In heaven we will experience "true love," beyond all human thinking or knowledge.

For those who overcome this world, and the works of Satan (by the power of God working in them and through them), they will inherit eternity in heaven (Matt. 7:21, 24:13). In heaven, "there shall be no more curse: but the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it; and his servants shall serve him" (Rev. 22:3). "And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away" (Rev. 21:4).

Therefore, "in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus" (Eph. 2:7). God is Love, and it is His greatest desire to show His Children how much He loves them. For all eternity, God will pour out His love upon His Children in heaven.

If we are to know the plan of God for those who are His Children in Christ Jesus, we must search the complete Scriptures. Jesus said, "Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me" (John 5:39).

There are certain things that we must understand when searching the Scriptures.

1. God is always NOW.

God sees the end from the beginning (Isa. 46:9,10).

God sees things from eternity, not always the way man sees things.

2. God speaks things that are not as though they were.

What God says, will always come to pass.

3. God is Love.

Love never fails, therefore, God never fails.

(Study 1 Corinthians 13:4-8 closely, to understand what true love is).

God is always NOW. Therefore, God knew what He would do on this earth before this earth was created. God sees the end from the beginning. In Isaiah 46:9,10 it says,

Remember the former things of old: for I am God, and there is none else; I am God, and there is none like me,

Declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure:

In Revelation 1:8, Jesus said, "I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty." In Isaiah 44:6 it says, "Thus saith the LORD the King of Israel, and his redeemer the LORD of hosts; I am the first, and I am the last; and beside me there is no God"

To understand what God is trying to tell us in the Scriptures, we must include the complete Scriptures from Genesis through Revelation. We must see "the end from the beginning." What God says was declared from the foundation of the world, we must consider before that which comes after the foundation of the world. Then we can see things the way God sees things...

It is important to understand Genesis, Chapters 1 through 6. Without understanding these Chapters, it will not be easy to understand the remaining parts of the Bible. Yet, not everything in the beginning is revealed in Genesis, Chapters 1 through 6. Therefore, we must "Search the Scriptures...." to see things the way God sees things, "the end from the beginning."

There are certain things God reveals in His Word that can help us to understand the Scriptures. One thing is revealed in Galatians 3:17 where it says, "And this I say, that the covenant, that was confirmed before of God in Christ, the law, which was four hundred and thirty years after, cannot disannul, that it should make the promise of none effect." This is a principle established by God from the beginning. What God has declared as finished from the foundation of the world cannot be changed by anything after the creation of this world. God is always in the NOW, therefore, He will not change anything He declared earlier, He will only explain it or add to it, never take it away.

"God is God and there is none like Him" (Isa. 46:9). Satan is "a god" but he is not "God." Therefore, whatsoever Satan does will not, and cannot, change what God said in the beginning. God never bows to Satan, but Satan must bow his knee to God and the name of Jesus (Phil. 2:10).

God sees the end from the beginning, therefore, God has foreknowledge of all things before anything happens. Before God created the world as we see it now, Revelation 13:8 says, "the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world." Why was it declared by God that the Lamb was slain from the foundation of the world? Because of His foreknowledge, God knew what would happen in the garden of Eden in Genesis 3:1-6. God knew Adam and Eve would submit themselves to serve the devil, when the serpent tempted them. Therefore, God declared that the sins of the whole world would be laid upon Jesus (the Lamb of God), and He would "take away" the sins of the world. Everyone's sins were paid for by "the Blood of the Lamb."

With all the sins of the whole world laid upon Jesus, no one would need to bear their own sins anymore. They could be free of all their "sins, iniquities, infirmities, sicknesses, and disease," if they would believe the gospel. Romans 10:10 says, "For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation."

What Satan did to mankind in the Garden of Eden has no effect upon those who believe the Gospel, "the complete Gospel." Therefore, preaching "a sin gospel" is not the gospel that God wants preached throughout the world. But rather, what Jesus did on the Cross of Calvary for everyone, every nation, every kindred, for all eternity. God is not a respecter of persons, "sin is not the issue with God." The new birth, "born again," is God's eternal plan for man. In 1 John 1:7 it says, "if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin." That is how sin is overcome in this life.

When Christians are walking with God, there is no desire to sin. God places all His desires in our heart, and we have no desire for sin. God is our Father, and He loves us, and delivers us from all the works of the devil, by His Spirit working in us and through us.

There is another thing of importance. In the Garden of Eden was the Tree of Life. This was before Adam and Eve sinned in the garden of Eden. Therefore, that which came before sin entered mankind, could not be changed by the sin of mankind.

Again, let us see the wisdom of God concerning the Tree of Life. Had Adam and Eve eaten of the Tree of Life, they would have received eternal life, the very life of God dwelling in them. What Satan did to Adam and Eve did not change God's plan for man. Even though it says, "So he drove out the man; and he placed at the east of the garden of Eden Cherubims, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life" (Gen. 3:24). God did not withhold eternal life from Adam and Eve. Look at 1 Peter 3:18-20,

For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit:

By which also he went and preached unto the spirits in prison;

Which sometime were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water.

Then look at 1 Peter 4:6, which says, "For for this cause was the gospel preached also to them that are dead, that they might be judged according to men in the flesh, but live according to God in the spirit." Adam and Eve had the gospel preached to them when Jesus went down to the lower parts and preached to those who had died before Him.

God did not "reject" anyone, not even Adam and Eve because of sin. God will not turn anyone away who comes to Him and receives Jesus Christ as their LORD and Savior.

The Tree of Life was before sin entered into mankind. The sin of mankind could not change God's offer of eternal life for "whosoever will come and drink of the water of life." The water of life is the Word of God, which is "the Word of Life." The apostle John used the word "water" symbolically, for the Word of God many times.

Those who have sinned, can come to Jesus and become born again into the family of God and spend eternity in heaven. Sin cannot stop God from receiving "whosoever will come to Jesus and receive Him as LORD and Savior." In Revelation 22:17 it says, "And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely."

Repentance and forgiveness of sins is available for those who are already born again, and have sinned. In 1 John 1:9 it says, "If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness."

God is love, and God does not desire that anyone should spend eternity in hell. If Christians will keep up their relationship and fellowship with God the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, they will spend eternity with God in heaven. That is the will of God for everyone. Now it is up to us, "individually" to maintain our relationship, and fellowship with God in Christ Jesus.