Posted by Shofar/Liz
A few years ago I had a vivid dream that I saw my mom in heaven. I tried to capture the scene in a small oil painting. She stood in a clearing in a white dress. There were trees on both sides of a path that led to a cottage at the end of it. It was so beautiful and serene that I could only attempt to convey the mood in the picture with my limited artistic skills.
My mom knew Jesus as her Savior; she knew that God was her Father and she was His child, His daughter. She lived a life that was pleasing to God. And when she died she went to heaven where I will see her again one day. When my dad passed on we had a private family graveside memorial. Dad honored God his whole life. Wyman told our family and friends to say their “Good bye,” or “I’ll be seeing you later” if they accept Jesus into their hearts. Many said a simple prayer of faith that day to assure themselves of their salvation, simply by believing Romans 10:9:
“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.”
John 3:16 tells us:
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
(Continuation of STS eBook, CHAPTER 1, GOD IS FAITHFUl. Note: I have highlighted some words and phrases.)
Having a Relationship With God
To know God and receive all of the blessings that He has for us requires a knowledge of who God is and finding out what it means to be a child of God. This is why we need to learn to apply our faith to believe and obey God’s Word, as we enter into a relationship with Him. Our relationship with God depends upon our love and obedience in following His commandments. We accept the authority of the Bible as Truth and allow the Holy Spirit to give us understanding and clarity. We accept it WHOLE and not pick it apart since God said that
“Every Scripture is God-breathed (given by His inspiration) and profitable for instruction, for reproof and conviction of sin, for correction of error and discipline in obedience, and for training in righteousness (in holy living, in conformity to God’s will in thought, purpose, and action). So that the man of God may be complete and proficient, well fitted and thoroughly equipped for every good work” (2 Tim 3:16-17 Amplified Bible).
We have to know what the requirements are to be in a relationship with God, and then we can receive the blessings and rewards of our obedience to Him. Everything we do in obedience to God’s Word in our families, our jobs and businesses, whatever we set our hands to do, will have God’s blessings in abundance, and we will be respected (paraphrased from Deuteronomy 28). But on the other hand, if we don’t follow God’s ways, curses and calamities, everything that could go wrong will happen to us because we have left the protective care and promises of God
The only way to be accepted by God and for us to have a relationship with Him, is to fully believe that God is who He says He is: He says what He means and means what He says, i.e. believe that HIS WORD IS TRUE!
Numbers 23:19 says,
“God is not a man, that He should tell or act a lie, neither the son of man, that He should feel repentance or compunction (for what He has promised). Has He said and shall He not do it? Or has He spoken and shall He not make it good?” (Amplified Bible)
The reality of this is that a non-acceptance of God’s Word is a rejection of God Himself. This is the issue that confronts most folks today, even in the Church. So many folks want to accept God on their terms according to what they find agreeable with them or what meets with their approval. God’s Way is the only way to eternal life. God sent Jesus to point out HIS WAY for us: Jesus said (to Thomas and to us),
“I am the WAY, the TRUTH, and the LIFE: no man comes to the Father, but by me” (John 14:6).
Since God reveals Himself and His plan and purpose for our lives in His Word it is important to do serious Bible study, not just simply read it, but read and expect God to reveal His truth to our hearts, to make it real to our hearts and lives. We need to STUDY to have God’s approval, to understand and interpret the scriptures correctly and not be ashamed by being ignorant of basic Bible principles; we bring reproach upon ourselves and do not bring glory to God if we present ourselves as poor testimonies of our Christian faith (paraphrased from 2Timothy 2:15)
(NEXT- CHAPTER 2, PLEASING GOD- LOVE GOD, LOVE HIS WORD AND OBEY HIM)