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MIND CONTROL 61: Turning On The Light

A LitSwitch in the off position

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Jesus says:

Matt 10:26-40
26 “Therefore do not fear them, for there is nothing covered that will not be revealed, and hidden that will not be known.
27 “WHAT I TELL YOU IN THE DARKNESS, SPEAK IN THE LIGHT; AND WHAT YOU HEAR WHISPERED IN YOUR EAR, PROCLAIM UPON THE HOUSETOPS.

We are in the dark……. And Jesus is trying to lead us into light.

Jesus came to tell us certain things that “need to be heard”.

There are certain things that need to be declared so that people can gain “knowledge”

28 “And DO NOT FEAR THOSE WHO KILL THE BODY, BUT ARE UNABLE TO KILL THE SOUL; BUT RATHER FEAR HIM WHO IS ABLE TO DESTROY BOTH SOUL AND BODY IN HELL.

There is absolutely nothing to fear in the world.

We shouldn’t be afraid of people who can only harm our body…….. our bodies are of little importance.

Instead…… we need to be much more fearful about losing our soul.

29 “Are not two sparrows sold for a cent? And yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father.
30 “But the very hairs of your head are all numbered.
31 “THEREFORE DO NOT FEAR; YOU ARE OF MORE VALUE THAN MANY SPARROWS.

Many of us don’t seem to realize just how valuable we are.

We think our value consists of “the things we have”

We don’t realize that there is “only one thing” to be valued…….a relationship with God.

If we have a relationship with God why would it matter if people harm our body?

If we have a relationship with God why would we worry about anything?

What could possibly happen in the world that could affect us?

Birds with half a brain worry about nothing.

Man with a super-sized brain worries about something as idiotic as who will win a football match.

Christians say the love of God is “unconditional”

Yet does Got really love people for no reason?

Does God love you regardless of the fact that you lie, cheat, steal, fornicate, gossip, hate, fight and have no interest in knowing who he is?

Does God love you regardless of the fact that you don’t care if he exists?

Does God love you because every once in a while you ask him for something that you want?

God’s love can never be “unconditional”.

32 “Everyone therefore who shall confess Me before men, I will also confess him before My Father who is in heaven.
33 “BUT WHOEVER SHALL DENY ME BEFORE MEN, I WILL ALSO DENY HIM BEFORE MY FATHER WHO IS IN HEAVEN.

We need to understand the full capacity of the word “confession”.

A confession is an “acknowledgement of belief”.

When you acknowledge belief in something…… you act in accordance with that belief.

You’re in or youre out.

It’s all or nothing.

……………..do we accept the message……or not?

34 “DO NOT THINK THAT I CAME TO BRING PEACE ON THE EARTH; I DID NOT COME TO BRING PEACE, BUT A SWORD.
35 “For I came to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law;
36 and a man’s enemies will be the members of his household.
37 “HE WHO LOVES HIS FATHER OR MOTHER MORE THAN ME IS NOT WORTHY OF ME; AND HE WHO LOVES SON OR DAUGHTER MORE THAN ME IS NOT WORTHY OF ME.

The message is hard to handle.

The message is offensive.

The message causes uproar and contempt from men

We enjoy the darkness……….we don’t want the light to be switched on.

We want to remain in our ignorance and live our lives to the fullest.

We cant handle the message so we react.

38 “AND HE WHO DOES NOT TAKE HIS CROSS AND FOLLOW AFTER ME IS NOT WORTHY OF ME.

His message requires us to “do something”.

A completely different doctrine from the one Christians preach saying that “Christ has “done it for us”.

If “you” are not prepared to do it………”you” are not worthy of him.

But that’s the question.

Are we willing to do it?

Our we willing to give up our lives?

39 “HE WHO HAS FOUND HIS LIFE SHALL LOSE IT, AND HE WHO HAS LOST HIS LIFE FOR MY SAKE SHALL FIND IT.

What we see as life…….. is not life.

The life we see is temporary……..it will inevitably be lost.

But if we are prepared to lose this life…….we will find life.

We will find a life……. which is a relationship with God.

40 “HE WHO RECEIVES YOU RECEIVES ME, AND HE WHO RECEIVES ME RECEIVES HIM WHO SENT ME.

Receiving Christ is not about saying a prayer at an altar and believing he is living in your heart.

Receiving Christ…….is about receiving his message.

God sent his son…….. to tell us something.

He sent him to tell us “that he is there”.

He sent him to tell us how to get close to him.

He sent him to tell us that he wants to know us…….and this is how we can get to know him.

He sent him……. to make a blind world see.

To be continued……..

 
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Posted by on May 29, 2011 in THOUGHTS

 

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MIND CONTROL 52: Expensive Situations

Eye of a needle

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Lets take a look at a few more examples of Jesus’ attitude towards rich men.

Matt 19:16-30

16 Now behold, one came and said to Him, “Good Teacher, WHAT GOOD THING SHALL I DO THAT I MAY HAVE ETERNAL LIFE?”
17 So He said to him, “Why do you call Me good? No one is good but One, that is, God. But if you want to enter into life, keep the commandments.”
18 He said to Him, “Which ones?” Jesus said,” ‘You shall not murder,’ ‘You shall not commit adultery,’ ‘You shall not steal,’ ‘You shall not bear false witness,’
19 ‘Honor your father and your mother,’ and, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.'”
20 The young man said to Him, “All these things I have kept from my youth. What do I still lack?”
21 Jesus said to him, “IF YOU WANT TO BE PERFECT, GO, SELL WHAT YOU HAVE AND GIVE TO THE POOR, AND YOU WILL HAVE TREASURE IN HEAVEN; AND COME, FOLLOW ME.”
22 But when the young man heard that saying, he went away sorrowful, for he had great possessions.
23 Then Jesus said to His disciples, “ASSUREDLY, I SAY TO YOU THAT IT IS HARD FOR A RICH MAN TO ENTER THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN.
24 “And AGAIN I SAY TO YOU, IT IS EASIER FOR A CAMEL TO GO THROUGH THE EYE OF A NEEDLE THAN FOR A RICH MAN TO ENTER THE KINGDOM OF GOD.”
25 When His disciples heard it, they were greatly astonished, saying, “Who then can be saved?”
26 But Jesus looked at them and said to them, “WITH MEN THIS IS IMPOSSIBLE, BUT WITH GOD ALL THINGS ARE POSSIBLE.”
27 Then Peter answered and said to Him, “See, we have left all and followed You. Therefore what shall we have?”
28 So Jesus said to them, “Assuredly I say to you, that in the regeneration, when the Son of Man sits on the throne of His glory, you who have followed Me will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.
29 “And EVERYONE WHO HAS LEFT HOUSES OR BROTHERS OR SISTERS OR FATHER OR MOTHER OR WIFE OR CHILDREN OR LANDS, FOR MY SAKE, SHALL RECEIVE A HUNDREDFOLD, AND INHERIT ETERNAL LIFE.
30 “BUT MANY WHO ARE FIRST WILL BE LAST, AND THE LAST FIRST.

Let’s see if we can break down what Jesus is saying here.

First of all a man comes to him with a question.

“What must I do to inherit eternal life?”

In other words…… This man wants to know what it will take to have a relationship with God.

Jesus tells him to obey the commandments.

First point to be drawn out…….in order to have a relationship with God……there is a certain level of obedience that is required towards certain things.

The man claimed that he had fulfilled these requirements……. (take note that this is indeed a possibility)

But the latter half of the requirements was what I found interesting.

“If you want to be perfect………sell all you have and give to the poor……and you will have treasure in heaven”

It would have been suspicious if Jesus had told him to sell all he had and give it to him….. as pastors generally do.

But his requirement was that he should give to the poor.

The man could not fulfill this requirement…….why?

Because he had great possessions.

There appears to be a bit of a problem with having great possessions.

Great possessions are not easy to let go of.

But in order to be perfect…….you have a choice.

You can choose to remain as you are with your great possessions

Or you can choose to give away these great possessions…… in order to gain treasure in heaven

A number of questions come to mind

Is it worth it?

Does an exchange of great possessions and treasure in heaven sound like a good bargain?

That’s a question only you can answer.

But Jesus made one thing clear.

It is “hard” for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven.

The analogy that Jesus used to describe just how hard it is, was a camel going through the eye of a needle.

You do the math.

A camel…….the eye of a sowing needle.

Saying it is a pretty tight fit is a slight understatement…….it is more or less impossible.

The disciples of Jesus were so shocked by this that they asked a question.

“Who then can be saved?”

Allow me to rephrase the question to put it more in perspective

If a rich man with great possessions cannot inherit eternal life……who then can be saved?

It’s a pretty graphic question…..especially considering the fact that in the world…… the rich are the ones who you would expect to be the first to obtain anything of value.

But it seems that the structure that Jesus presents is entirely different.

Jesus then threw something else into the equation.

“With men it is impossible…….but with God all things are possible”.

It appears as though the world cant do what he is asking them to.

The world wont give up great possessions in order to have a relationship with God.

Quite frankly……men would rather have great possessions……than know God.

But I am of the assumption that we are not trying to be like men.

We are not trying to be like the world.

Because when you have a relationship with God……. you start to see just how possible it is…… to sell all your great possessions……give it all to the poor……yet still live a good and healthy life.

You can be “in” the world…….but not “of” the world.

Ill end with the last statement that Jesus said.

“But many who are first will be last, and the last first”

The first in this world are the rich.

The last in this world are the poor.

Many of the rich will be last.

Many of the poor will be first.

The ways of God don’t seem to be the ways of men.

Maybe that’s the defining element that separates God from mankind.

Maybe if we had a better understanding of the ways of God.

We will be one step closer to actualizing a relationship.

To be continued…….

 
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Posted by on May 12, 2011 in THOUGHTS

 

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MIND CONTROL 42

Sword

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Lets start with something controversial.

Jesus says:

Matthew 10:34-37……”DO NOT THINK THAT I HAVE COME TO BRING PEACE ON EARTH; I HAVE NOT COME TO BRING PEACE, BUT A SWORD. For I have come to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law; and a man’s foes will be those of his own household. He who loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; and he who loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.

This is a very interesting statement, coming from a man who is described as the prince of peace.

What could Christ mean by saying such a thing?

This can be viewed as pretty offensive. Is Christ really worth losing your family for?

Why are we not allowed to love our family’s more than we love Christ?

From following Christ’s message carefully……it starts to become more apparent what he actually means.

Imagine a child born in a Moslem family. He is taught religion. His beliefs are instilled upon him by birth with no questions asked.

Imagine that same child picking up a book and reading the words of a man called Jesus. Upon his understanding of what Christ teaches. He concludes that he no longer wants to be a Moslem.

It starts to become more evident…….why this child when he gets home and relays his new found opinion to his parents; will find that Jesus Christ is a sword.

It will be a discussion that will set a man against his father, or a daughter against her mother. A hatred will be brewed as a result of a feeling of betrayal. And a man’s foes will become those of his very own household.

Then Jesus goes deeper into his explanation.

Mark 10:29-30
29 “Truly I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or farms, for My sake and for the gospel’s sake,
30 but that he will receive a hundred times as much now IN THS PRESENT AGE, houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and farms, along with persecutions; and in the age to come, eternal life.

According to Christ. You will obtain a new family based on your beliefs. Your new family will be those that recognize the words of Jesus. And those will become your hundreds of brothers, and mothers and sisters. In this present age.

He also says you will obtain this……along with persecutions.

So its not going to be a joy ride. People will hate you and say all kinds of things about you simply because of your belief in what he says.

But after this age…..he promises one thing……eternal life.

What is this eternal life?

Why is it something that we would want?

Is it of any value? Or is it something that is not worth pursuing?

To be continued…….

 
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Posted by on May 1, 2011 in THOUGHTS

 

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MIND CONTROL 41

Jesus

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Now that we are focused on Jesus, we can actually start to make some progress.

So far we have only been destroying faulty foundations.

So let’s see if we can build on the correct one.

Let’s start with this statement:

John 8:42-45

42 Jesus said to them, “If God were your Father, you would love me, for I came from God and now am here. I have not come on my own; but he sent me.
43 Why is my language not clear to you? Because you are unable to hear what I say.
44 You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father’s desire. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies.
45 Yet BECAUSE I TELL YOU THE TRUTH, YOU DO NOT BELIEVE ME!

It’s interesting that Jesus says that the reason why they don’t believe what he says is because he is telling them the “truth”

Evidently, if he came and told them lies (like Paul)……they would have believed him

But why is it that this truth is so hard to hear?

What is this truth that Jesus came to tell that is so opposing to what people want to hear?

That will be determined as we go along.

Jesus says:

Luke 14:26-27
26 “If anyone comes to me and does not hate his father and mother, his wife and children, his brothers and sisters– yes, even his own life– he cannot be my disciple.
27 And anyone who does not carry his cross and follow me cannot be my disciple.

As you can see……this is a pretty hard truth to accept straight from the onset.

Jesus says……if you don’t hate your life…..you cannot be his disciple.

It is a very serious task to ask oneself the question…..”Do I hate my life?”.

A famous person once said…..”Nobody wants to die, but everybody wants to go to heaven”.

That statement hits the nail right on the head, and its something that needs to be confronted.

Jesus says:

Luke 6:22-23
22 BLESSED ARE YOU WHEN MEN HATE YOU, when they exclude you and insult you and reject your name as evil, because of the Son of Man.
23 “Rejoice in that day and leap for joy, because great is your reward in heaven. For that is how their fathers treated the prophets.

Jesus said again in Mark 13:13…..”ALL MEN WILL HATE YOU BECAUSE OF ME, but he who stands firm to the end will be saved”.

How many of us want to be hated?

Trust me……if you go around preaching the actual words of Jesus……it is inevitable….. you will be hated.

There is something beautiful about the truth though:

John 8:31-32
31 To the Jews who had believed him, Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples.
32 Then YOU SHALL KNOW THE TRUTH, AND THE TRUTH SHALL MAKE YOU FREE.”

Knowing the truth is what makes a person free.

But then the question follows…….what is the truth?

John 14:6-7
6 Jesus answered, “I AM THE WAY AND THE TRUTH AND THE LIFE. No one comes to the Father except through me.
7 If you really knew me, you would know my Father as well. From now on, you do know him and have seen him.”

The truth……is an actual person…..Jesus Christ.

For the benefit of the discussion.

Let us assume that Jesus really is the truth, like he says he is.

And let’s see where we end up.

One thing is for sure……Jesus is either a mad man……or he is “who he says he is”.

It’s one or the other.

Hopefully……over the next few weeks……we will find the truth.

Who knows……we may have found “him” already.

To be continued…….

 
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Posted by on April 30, 2011 in THOUGHTS

 

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MIND CONTROL 23

A depiction of a Buddhist hell realm

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Hell. The concept itself is a complete distortion. God’s son never spoke of a hell that burns for eternity. Hell, was a physical location.

In the days of old there was a place called “Gehenna”. A pit that was kept constantly burning. A garbage dump near Jerusalem. Dead bodies after battle were dumped there; a massive incinerator that saved the cost of using tombs for each dead soldier. Gehenna…….was translated as Hell.

They changed the physical location and presented something spiritual. Something they could use to scare people into the church so they could control them.

They said a God who is described as love has no qualms about sending people to burn for all eternity.

The concept remains suspicious. God wants his children to be like him. He wants his children to have love in their hearts.

I ask the question. Can you live comfortably in heaven with the knowledge that the whole time you are there, some friends of yours are burning in a fire; screaming and crying for help?

I dare say that if God can do that for all eternity …….he is not love.

But does a hell exist? Indeed it may. But certainly not in accordance with the description they have been made to believe.

If the prophesy of John is true; then hell may simply be anguish from standing in the presence of one that is holy. Even then ……hell does not last for eternity. It would be a purfication process that would last for a period of time. The end result being a person that has been made holy. Like gold in a fire; the dirt is eliminated, and gold is refined in purity.

Hell only lasts for a period of “ages”. A lot of the time the bible translates the word “aeon” (meaning ‘age’) as “forever”. A distortion that is evident even within the English language.

Forever and ever does not exist. You can’t have eternity following another eternity. But you can have an age following another age. Hell will last for an age; after which there will be other ages to follow. At a certain point in the ages, every knee will bow. Everyone will be in heaven. I dare say even Satan will be there. Knees bow down in “worship”. Hands are raised in “surrender”. If the prophesy of Isaiah is true. Then one day “all” will be with God. Some sooner than others.

John in revelation says death and hell will be thrown into the lake of fire and will be destroyed. If his prophecy is true…….Hell will not last for eternity.

Fact remains. God’s son never spoke of a hell that we are told about today. So let us leave it on the level of the unknown.

If God’s son is the truth and he has not revealed anything about a spiritual hell. Hell is not an issue. There must be a lot more important things to focus on.

God’s son. Jesus Christ. Yes; God’s first son was called Jesus. I say that just for the record.

But there was a man. A man that killed Christians for a living. A man that spent his entire life doing everything he could to make sure that all who believed in God died.

He claimed he had an encounter with God one day. He crossed over to the good side. He convinced the entire world that he was a follower of Christ; but the whole time he subtly led everyone astray. He found a new way to kill people. A way that would seem so good that noone would be able to see that it was evil. The perfect disguise. A wolf in sheep’s clothing. Coming across as light; yet being darkness itself.

He is a man known as an apostle. An apostle responsible for a large portion of the new testament. The vice messiah. The man some people mistake to be the actual messiah. His name was once Saul, but today…….they call him Paul.

Click Here To Read More of The MIND CONTROL Series

 
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Posted by on April 14, 2011 in THOUGHTS

 

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IS JESUS GOD OR A MAN?

Sistine Chapel, fresco Michelangelo,

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A lot of us hide behind the excuse that Jesus was able to live the life that he did, because he was “God the son”. We feel that he was he was incapable of sinning, and therefore by living a sinless life, he was able to be a sacrifice for the sins of the world.

We don’t seem to see that believing this notion defeats the exact purpose of why Jesus came.

Today I just want to share something that I have come to understand, in the hope that you can follow my trend of thought. I assure you that everything I am going to say is based on highlighting what Jesus has to say for himself.

So let’s start by forgetting everything we have been told, and like little children try to grasp what our teacher had to say.

The first thing we need to establish is the reason why Christ came:

John 18:36-37
36 Jesus said, “MY KINGDOM IS NOT OF THIS WORLD. If it were, my servants would fight to prevent my arrest by the Jews. But now my kingdom is from another place.”
37 “You are a king, then!” said Pilate. Jesus answered, “You are right in saying I am a king. IN FACT, FOR THIS REASON I WAS BORN, AND FOR THIS I CAME INTO THE WORLD, TO TESTIFY TO THE TRUTH. EVERYONE ON THE SIDE OF TRUTH LISTENS TO ME.”

From this I gather a number of things, the first of which is the most critical. “He was born, and he came into this world, to testify to the truth”. The more we focus on this reason why he came, the easier it will be to understand the things that he had to say; because they can fundamentally be linked back to one primary purpose……to testify to the truth.

So there is some truth that Jesus came to reveal. This truth has something to do with a kingdom that is not of this world; and if we claim to be on the side of truth, we need to listen to him.

The next thing we need to do is separate God from Jesus.

John 6:38-40
38 FOR I HAVE COME DOWN FROM HEAVEN NOT TO DO MY WILL BUT TO DO THE WILL OF HIM WHO SENT ME.
39 And this is the will of him who sent me, that I shall lose none of all that he has given me, but raise them up at the last day.
40 For my Father’s will is that everyone who looks to the Son and believes in him shall have eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day.”

So According to Jesus; he has his own will. His Father has a will as well. He did not come to earth to do his “own will”, he came to do the “will of the father”. It’s important that we see the clear distinction between the two, because it gives us a better understanding of the relationship that Jesus has with his father. Jesus has surrendered his own will to the will of the father in order to be obedient to the purpose that he was sent for.

His Father’s will is that if anyone should look to Jesus and believe in him, that person will have eternal life and will be raised on the last day.

So we need to have an understanding of what it means to “look to and believe in him”, and we also need to have an understanding of what “eternal life” is. We’ll talk about eternal life a bit more later on, but for now let’s focus on what it means to “believe in him”

Jesus says:

Luke 6:46-49
46 “WHY DO YOU CALL ME, ‘LORD, LORD,’ AND DO NOT DO WHAT I SAY?
47 I will show you what he is like who comes to me and hears my words and puts them into practice.
48 He is like a man building a house, who dug down deep and laid the foundation on rock. When a flood came, the torrent struck that house but could not shake it, because it was well built.
49 But the one who hears my words and does not put them into practice is like a man who built a house on the ground without a foundation. The moment the torrent struck that house, it collapsed and its destruction was complete.”

Believing in him is more than just signing “Christian” in the religious section of a document; it is more than just going to church every Sunday and praying every so often. If we believe in him enough to call him lord; there is a level of importance in “doing the things that he says”; in essence, obeying his teachings and putting them into practice.

Jesus is so serious about this that he says:

Matt 7:21
21 “NOT EVERYONE WHO SAYS TO ME, ‘LORD, LORD,’ WILL ENTER THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN, BUT ONLY HE WHO DOES THE WILL OF MY FATHER WHO IS IN HEAVEN.

So the responsibility of doing the will of the father does not just fall on him; it falls on us.

Already some of us must be spotting a difference between the Christian message and the actual message of Christ. His message is not about him doing anything for us, other than emphasizing the fact that “we” must do God’s will. He is not saying that he is going to be punished for us. He is telling us what “we” must do if we want to get into heaven.

Matt 12:46-50
46 While Jesus was still talking to the crowd, his mother and brothers stood outside, wanting to speak to him.
47 Someone told him, “Your mother and brothers are standing outside, wanting to speak to you.”
48 He replied to him, “Who is my mother, and who are my brothers?”
49 Pointing to his disciples, he said, “Here are my mother and my brothers.
50 FOR WHOEVER DOES THE WILL OF MY FATHER IN HEAVEN IS MY BROTHER AND SISTER AND MOTHER.”

He rejected even his own biological family members; saying that his family are only those that do the will of God.

This must mean there are some of us out there who are not doing the will of God. Primarily because we have not really thought about what the will of God is in the first place. At the moment we have been confused into thinking that the will of God was for his son to come and die as a sacrifice for our sins. When in effect the will of God is that we should lay down our lives…….. just like Christ did.

As you can imagine this is a very broad concept which isn’t going to be accurately discussed within a few lines. So I guess well end on a note that should provide us with more insight:

John 14:12-15
12 I TELL YOU THE TRUTH, ANYONE WHO HAS FAITH IN ME WILL DO WHAT I HAVE BEEN DOING. HE WILL DO EVEN GREATER THINGS THAN THESE, BECAUSE I AM GOING TO THE FATHER.
13 And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Son may bring glory to the Father.
14 You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.
15 “IF YOU LOVE ME, YOU WILL OBEY WHAT I COMMAND.

If at any point in time we ever thought that we could never be like Jesus we are wrong. Not only is it possible. It is a fundamental requirement. If we are not like him we cannot see the kingdom of God.

Jesus Christ laid down his own will for the will of God. We too are required to lay down our own will for the will of God. That is why Jesus is a shepherd and we are the sheep; because we follow his example, and this will enable us to find God.

How can we say we love God and want to go to heaven, when we don’t even fully understand what his will is for our lives?

 
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Posted by on March 24, 2011 in THOUGHTS

 

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