In John Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress we read of a moment when two pilgrims on their way to the celestial city (heaven) are conversing,
One of the two pilgrims says to the other, “When do you find yourself in the most wholesome and most vigorous spiritual state?” To which the other pilgrim says, “When I think of the place to which I am going.”
Bunyan understood that. When he wrote that he understood that heaven on your mind changes your life. The living in a joyous anticipation of the presence of God changes everything.
Sadly, I suppose most Christians are more like the cynical Mark Twain who when told about heaven remarked flippantly, “You take heaven, I’d rather go to Bermuda.” Read the rest at The End Time: Heavenly minded is good.
- John Bunyan and Pilgrim’s Progress
- Every Pilgrim’s Story, by John Bunyan.
- Bunyan’s Cautions to Parents
February 22, 2013 | Categories: Christian foundations, Christianity, Faith, God, Holy Spirit, Jesus Christ, Life, people, Uncategorized | Tags: Bermuda, Christ, Christian, God, john-bunyan, Mark Twain, New Jerusalem, Pilgrim Progress | 4 Comments
Do you know it? There is only one way! Jesus is that way.
John 14:6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.
Not Buddah, not Mohammad, not by any false idol dreamed up by foolish men. Satan tempts man, giving what he desires. The wide gate, not the narrow.
But it is the wrong way!
“Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. NIV Matthew 7:13
It is so tempting to listen to those who promise God freely. Those who tell you all you have to do is say a word. Half truths that lead astray those who think that He is their true desire. It is only the first step on your journey to accept Him. And only through Him will you find what you are looking for. He is the “narrow gate,” and you have to be willing to give up everything to go through.
“Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who will find it.” Matthew 7:14 NKJV
King James Version (KJV)
34 And when he had called the people unto him with his disciples also, he said unto them, Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.
35 For whosoever will save his life shall lose it; but whosoever shall lose his life for my sake and the gospel’s, the same shall save it.
Saved from what? Judgment and condemnation! Saved for what? God’s Kingdom!
Dear Reader, take that first step and accept Him into your heart and into your life, but do not be like Lot’s wife. Do not look back to your old life, for surely if you do, you have indicated that Jesus sacrifice was in vain.God knows that you are not perfect. He will forgive you if you falter. But for those who think that they can continue with their old lives just because they accepted Him in one fleeting moment, they are denying Him if they continue on their way thinking that they can do anything that they want. And denying Him is saying that the sacrifice was unworthy. Woe to those who deny Him, they will have their name removed from the Book of Life.
The Dead Church
Revelation 3 “And to the angel of the church in Sardis write,
‘These things says He who has the seven Spirits of God and the seven stars: “I know your works, that you have a name that you are alive, but you are dead. 2 Be watchful, and strengthen the things which remain, that are ready to die, for I have not found your works perfect before God.[a] 3 Remember therefore how you have received and heard; hold fast and repent. Therefore if you will not watch, I will come upon you as a thief, and you will not know what hour I will come upon you. 4 You[b] have a few names even in Sardis who have not defiled their garments; and they shall walk with Me in white, for they are worthy. 5 He who overcomes shall be clothed in white garments, and I will not blot out his name from the Book of Life; but I will confess his name before My Father and before His angels.
6 “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.”’
The Faithful Church
7 “And to the angel of the church in Philadelphia write,
‘These things says He who is holy, He who is true, “He who has the key of David, He who opens and no one shuts, and shuts and no one opens”:[c] 8 “I know your works. See, I have set before you an open door, and no one can shut it;[d] for you have a little strength, have kept My word, and have not denied My name.9 Indeed I will make those of the synagogue of Satan, who say they are Jews and are not, but lie—indeed I will make them come and worship before your feet, and to know that I have loved you. 10 Because you have kept My command to persevere, I also will keep you from the hour of trial which shall come upon the whole world, to test those who dwell on the earth. 11 Behold,[e]I am coming quickly! Hold fast what you have, that no one may take your crown. 12 He who overcomes, I will make him a pillar in the temple of My God, and he shall go out no more. I will write on him the name of My God and the name of the city of My God, the New Jerusalem, which comes down out of heaven from My God. And I will write on him My new name.
13 “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.”’
The Lukewarm Church
14 “And to the angel of the church of the Laodiceans[f] write,
‘These things says the Amen, the Faithful and True Witness, the Beginning of the creation of God: 15 “I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. I could wish you were cold or hot. 16 So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot,[g] I will vomit you out of My mouth. 17 Because you say, ‘I am rich, have become wealthy, and have need of nothing’—and do not know that you are wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked—18 I counsel you to buy from Me gold refined in the fire, that you may be rich; and white garments, that you may be clothed, that the shame of your nakedness may not be revealed; and anoint your eyes with eye salve, that you may see. 19 As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten. Therefore be zealous and repent.20 Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me. 21 To him who overcomes I will grant to sit with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne.
22 “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.”’”
If you truly love Him, keep your eyes on the prize and look to heaven for that is where your treasure is, not here on this earth.
19 “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. 20 But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
There is only one way, and that way is through Jesus, the Anointed One, our Savior and our Lord. Do not be fooled into following the easy way. Do not let Satan convince you that all you have to do is accept and nothing more. He said, pick up your cross and follow me. Luke 9:23
New International Version (NIV)
23 Then he said to them all: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me.
Paul tells us in his letter to the Ephesians:
New King James Version (NKJV)
9 and to make all see what is the fellowship[a] of the mystery, which from the beginning of the ages has been hidden in God who created all things through Jesus Christ;[b] 10 to the intent that now the manifold wisdom of God might be made known by the church to the principalities and powers in the heavenly places, 11 according to the eternal purpose which He accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord,
He is the way but He warns us that the way will not be easy, but instead hard, so why are you falling for the lies that tell you it is easy, just say the word? Is it because you just want to appear to follow Him? Because if you truly do, you must make the effort to do what He asks of you.
Don’t pile up treasure here on the earth and expect it to make a bit of difference when you stand before that Throne of Judgment! Don’t expect to have the Lord open the door just because you believe in Him. Even the demons do that!
New International Version (NIV)
19 You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that —and shudder.
What price are you willing to pay? He paid the ultimate price. He made the sacrifice so that you would have the chance. But it is a chance, not a surety. You have an obligation once you accept, and that is to follow Him. Not through the wide gate, that just leads to destruction.He is the way, the only way, He will not give you more that you can bear, but He does expect something from you in return.
Be warned, it will not be easy, you will suffer for His name. But the rewards are great and the peace that you will recieve is wonderful.
New King James Version (NKJV)
The Happiness of Those Who Trust in God
A Psalm of David when he pretended madness before Abimelech, who drove him away, and he departed.
34 I will bless the Lord at all times;
His praise shall continually be in my mouth.
2 My soul shall make its boast in the Lord;
The humble shall hear of it and be glad.
3 Oh, magnify the Lord with me,
And let us exalt His name together.
4 I sought the Lord, and He heard me,
And delivered me from all my fears.
5 They looked to Him and were radiant,
And their faces were not ashamed.
6 This poor man cried out, and the Lord heard him,
And saved him out of all his troubles.
7 The angel[a] of the Lord encamps all around those who fear Him,
And delivers them.
8 Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good;
Blessed is the man who trusts in Him!
9 Oh, fear the Lord, you His saints!
There is no want to those who fear Him.
10 The young lions lack and suffer hunger;
But those who seek the Lord shall not lack any good thing.
11 Come, you children, listen to me;
I will teach you the fear of the Lord.
12 Who is the man who desires life,
And loves many days, that he may see good?
13 Keep your tongue from evil,
And your lips from speaking deceit.
14 Depart from evil and do good;
Seek peace and pursue it.
15 The eyes of the Lord are on the righteous,
And His ears are open to their cry.
16 The face of the Lord is against those who do evil,
To cut off the remembrance of them from the earth.
17 The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears,
And delivers them out of all their troubles.
18 The Lord is near to those who have a broken heart,
And saves such as have a contrite spirit.
19 Many are the afflictions of the righteous,
But the Lord delivers him out of them all.
20 He guards all his bones;
Not one of them is broken.
21 Evil shall slay the wicked,
And those who hate the righteous shall be condemned.
22 The Lord redeems the soul of His servants,
And none of those who trust in Him shall be condemned.
June 30, 2012 | Categories: Bible, Christ, Christian foundations, Christianity, Church, Faith, Future, God, Holy Spirit, Jesus Christ, Life, LORD, people, Psalm | Tags: Authorized King James Version, Book of Life, God, jesus, Jesus Christ, Lord, Matthew, Matthew 7:13, New International Version, New Jerusalem, new-king-james-version, Satan | 1 Comment