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by Dr. Chas Brothers  
2/04/2010 / Self Help

It seems that everyone is looking for someone or something to believe in these days. Hope and the promise of a better tomorrow seem like fading memories as the days blend one to another.

Will my life have any meaning, any purpose, or will I just live, then die and blend into nothingness? If I died tomorrow, where would I go? What would happen to me, to my soul, to my spirit? Ever wonder what happens to someone after they die? In that context, ever wonder about yourself and what might happen to you? Ever wonder why Christians look forward to and embrace death?

Is there something better just over the horizon? The answer to that is a resounding YES! And we will explore that something better and what it means to you and your life in this article.

If you died today, do you know with certainty, where you would go? Many people are unsure and want something or someone to believe in. Saved Christians believe they will go to heaven; while atheists believe there is no God therefore, no heaven or hell.

(Mark 16:15-16)
And He said to them, "Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation. "He who has believed and has been baptized shall be saved; but he who has disbelieved shall be condemned.

Whether you believe or not, you will face judgment before God it is appointed unto all men to die once and then the judgment..

(John 3:16-17)
For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. "For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him."

(Romans 14:8)
If we live, we live to the Lord; and if we die, we die to the Lord. So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord.

At no time in the history of mankind has this question and decision ever been more important than now. The world is at war, people are killing their neighbors at phenomenal rates, abortion is easier than ever to get and people are dying right this minute because of their belief in Jesus Christ and their faith as Christians.

In America, becoming a born again Christian is easy, staying one takes work, due diligence, lots of prayer, humility, and a willingness to be used by the Holy Spirit.

(John 3:1-8)
Now there was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews; this man came to Jesus by night and said to Him, "Rabbi, we know that You have come from God as a teacher; for no one can do these signs that You do unless God is with him." Jesus answered and said to him, "Truly, truly, I say to you unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God."

Nicodemus said to Him, how can a man be born when he is old? He cannot enter a second time into his mother's womb and be born, can he? Jesus answered, "Truly, truly I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. "That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. "Do not be amazed that I said to you, "you must be born again."

In this statement, Jesus lays down the foundation of Christianity and tells us what we must all do to be received into heaven. We must all experience a spiritual rebirth in order to receive this promise.

We need to keep in mind however that this is only part of the equation in gaining access to the kingdom of God. Belief in Christ Jesus and in His sacrifice is the other part and is crucial to Christiandom if we are to inherit the keys to the kingdom.

(1 John 5:12)
He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life.

(2 Corinthians 5:17)
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!

Jesus did not come of His own volition, rather He was sent by the Father to complete a mission here on earth. That mission, was to basically save man from himself and all his evil deeds by giving him a means which to enjoy communion with God. Christ was in fact God's gift to us for it would be through Him and Him only that we could establish the forgiveness of sins and have fellowship with the Almighty.

The Apostle Paul tells us in Acts 4:12, "And there is salvation in no other name under heaven that has been given among men by which we must be saved."

Living a good life and performing good deeds is not a guarantee of getting into heaven. There is no way under heaven for you to save yourself. Men on their own, fall short of the glory of God.

(1 John 4:10)
This is love: not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.

(Matthew 9:13)
"I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners."

(Mark 10:45)
The Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life as a ransom for many.

These simple yet powerful pieces of scripture reveal to us the mission of Christ and why He was sent by the Father. Even though mankind rejected God, He still desired fellowship with us and an open exchange of love and understanding for all men. Sin separated man from God and through His Son Jesus Christ; He was going to fill the void that was in our hearts and minds and bridge the chasm that sin had created.

Death to the Christian is never an end it is but a new beginning, a beginning anew with God as our Supreme Ruler. As a new creation through Christ, it is our duty to protect and share what God has so freely given us. Eternal life is nothing to trifle with. Not everyone will get to enjoy the benefits of it.

(Job 14:5)
Man's days are determined; You have decreed the number of his months and have set limits he cannot exceed.

(John 8:51)
I tell you the truth, if anyone keeps my word, he will never see death.

(John 11:25-26)
I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die.

These are not just simple truths; they are stone fact deeply rooted in the word of God and His promise to us through His Son Jesus Christ. God reveals to us the way to get to Him and anoints His Son as the only way we may come to the Father. You can't backdoor salvation Christ is and always will be the one true way to see eternity.

(1 John 5:11)
God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son.

(John 5:24)
I tell you the truth; whoever hears my word and believes him who has sent me has eternal life and will not be condemned; he has crossed over from death to life.

(John 12:25)
The man who loves his life will lose it, while the man who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life.

(Romans 2:7)
To those who by persistence in doing good seek glory, honor and immortality, he will give eternal life.
Christ makes it plain in these verses how to obtain, seek and find eternal life. But these are only small bits and pieces of the larger picture than we must follow in order to see the kingdom of God and to enjoy life eternal with Him.

We are told many times through the bible that the wages of sin is death. On the way to Wakarusa there is a barn on the west side of the road with a huge billboard painted on the side of it that states a known truth quite eloquently: Life is short, death is sure, sin the cause, Christ the cure! AMEN!

Another piece of this salvation picture is the idea of repentance or turning away from your sin and continuing down a path of righteousness. In order for your salvation to "stick" you must repent of your old ways and walk in the Spirit of God. If you do not, your salvation is in a word false, and will only lead to death, destruction, and then judgment.

(Isaiah 45:22)
Turn to me and be saved, all you ends of the earth; for I am God, and there is no other.

(2 Timothy 2:25-26)
Those who oppose him he must gently instruct, in the hope that God will grant them repentance leading them to a knowledge of the truth, and that they will come to their senses and escape from the trap of the devil, who has taken them captive to do his will.

Granted, not everyone will be saved at the same time. We all need to reach a certain point in our lives when we are desperate to get out of the quagmire we are in and seek something greater than the sum of what makes us, us.

For years I was always kidding myself that I could out think God, I could misdirect him, I could outsmart him but instead all I managed to do was to drive a wedge further into our already strained relationship.

I was saved at 24, backslid at 26, left God until I was 40 and came to my senses thank God Almighty at 42 and have been on the narrow path ever since!

Am I perfect? No, not hardly. Am I still a sinner? Yes, not as frequently, but a sinner nonetheless for all fall short of the glory of God.

So, what do we do? For one thing, never become complacent or put off your preparations for your afterlife. Those who wait to call upon the Lord in the 11th hour always die at 10:30.

(Luke 12:40)
You must also be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect Him.

(Matthew 25:13)
Therefore keep watch, because you do not know the day or the hour.

(Revelation 22:20)
Yes, I am coming soon.

Becoming complacent can lead to the eternal death if you're found to be not ready.

(Romans 13:11)
"The hour has come for you to wake up from your slumber, because our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed."

Are you afraid to die? Is that what's holding you back from a relationship with Jesus? As believers in Christ we need not fear nor worry. We are "taken care of" and the bible is the Holy blueprint that teaches us how to obtain and maintain that relationship with Christ so that our journey into the afterlife is more one of quiet calm and peace rather than going in kicking and screaming. We need only fear death and final judgment if we are not saved.

(Matthew 13:41-42)
The Son of Man will send out of his kingdom everything that causes sin and all who do evil. They will throw them into the fiery furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.

(2 Thessalonians 1:8)
He will punish those who do not know God and do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus.

(2 Thessalonians 2:10-12)
They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved. For this reason God sends them a powerful delusion so that they will believe the lie and so that all will be condemned who have not believed the truth but have delighted in wickedness.

I ask the Lord at this time to let the Holy Spirit lay a conviction upon your soul about lingering hate or bigotry and that you would ask for God's forgiveness to heal you this very day.

Our Father tells us "For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But, if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins (Matthew 6:14-15) He also reminds us in Ephesians (4:32), to "Be kind to one another, forgiving each other, just as Christ forgave you."

If you don't know forgiveness, you'll never understand or be ready for salvation. So ask yourself this, "What must I do to be saved?"

1.) Accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior. This is not a promise of a perfect life quite the opposite! Jesus said "Take up your cross and follow me!" You may be ridiculed, lose friends, lose jobs and be persecuted for your beliefs. If this happens, and more times than not it will, praise God for this tells you without a doubt that you are His child and when the day is over and everything is said and done, that's all that matters.

2.) Confess your sins. Bring all your sins to the cross of Jesus. Christ's blood has the power to cleanse all sins don't hold anything back! God knows everything but He wants you to come to Him freely and make your confession.

3.) Repent of Your Sins. What does it mean to repent? To repent is to completely turn away from old habits that cause you to stumble or sin in the first place.

4.) Live a Godly life. Christ said in John, Chapter 11 that "I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me will live, even if he dies" In John 14 he reiterates this statement and adds that "no one comes to the Father but by me" There is no name under heaven other than Jesus that will unlock the gates of heaven to you when you die.

None of us are guaranteed anything. You and I may die today, only the Father knows the appointed time. Wouldn't it be nice to know that you've laid up for yourself treasures in heaven?

If you do not know where you'll go when you die, I would encourage you to examine your heart, listen and wait upon God and the Holy Spirit to work in your life. There is no decision you and I will ever make that's more important than this one.

God patiently waits on those who seek Him. If you're unsure of your relationship with our Father and with His Son Jesus Christ, contact me. Together, we'll seek guidance from the Father to eliminate those things which are interfering with your walk with God.

Copyright 2010 Rev. Chas Brothers is an Independent Christian Minister with Honorary Doctorates in Biblical Studies and Divinity. He is also a motivational speaker and writer and may be reached at; chas.brothers@frontier.comAll Scriptures taken from the Zondervan 1984 NIV and used with permission

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