Saints & Angels (saintsandangels) wrote in truebelievers03,
Saints & Angels

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to begin!

I am trying to get real discussions started on this community, so let us begin at the beginning!

The Essence of Christianity
I am writing this to explain my faith, testify to how it has worked in my life, and share the happiness and peace of mind that I feel when I am sure of my everlasting future. In case you were curious, I don’t write these things so I can be mocked, harassed or doubted as a sane and rational human being, although that often happens. I admit, it takes faith to put your life into the hands of a being you have never physically seen, but to me it takes far more faith to live without Him.

I am not a Bible scholar, a prophet, nor am I supernaturally enlightened. I am simply an enthusiastic child of God, eager to share His love for everyone and the wonderful gift of life He has bestowed upon us.

I will outline the origins of Christianity, the basis of the faith, what the Bible says about how we should live, and a little of my favorite, prophecy.

Please read this. It will take several minutes of your times, but this is the most important thing I could ever say. If you never listen to another word I say, please listen to this.

Where Christianity Began:
Christianity is a relatively new faith, considering people have believed in God since the beginning of time. Christianity is the belief that salvation can only be achieved by accepting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior. Therefore, this faith began little more than two thousand years ago, after Jesus ascended into heaven.

Basically, Jesus is the focal point of Christianity, because without Him we would have no reason to hope. His birth was the much anticipated event in the times of the Old Testament, as prophets came and gave details of the Savior that would soon provide a means to cleanse the world of it’s sin. For hundreds of years His birth was predicted, and finally He came. While He lived to be thirty-three years old, his ministry actually lasted less than four years. In that small amount of time, Jesus became the greatest prophet and teacher that the world had seen. He even predicted His own death and resurrection. And it is those two events that sum up the essence of our faith.

Jesus died on the cross though he was totally guiltless. He lived a sinless life. But in dying on that cross as our Lamb of sacrifice, He took upon Himself all the sins in the world and all those to come. When he was resurrected three days later, it was our receipt from God, saying that the sacrifice He made was acceptable, and that if we believed in Him, our sins would be forgiven.

It is because of Jesus that we celebrate Christmas, Good Friday and Easter Sunday. These three holidays mark the holiest days of the year in celebration and reverence of the Man who came to this world to deliver it from sin, and who suffered on the cross for us because He loves us.

The church didn’t actually come into being until shortly after Christ had ascended into heaven, because until that point the Holy Spirit had never been active on earth. But since, the Holy Spirit has worked in believers to help preach the Gospel and bring people to Christ.

Many people wear crosses around their necks, churches use them in their architecture and people even display them in their homes. This is for no other reason than a symbolic reminder of what occurred on a cross for us many, many years ago. And this Christian church is more active and alive than it has ever been. Jesus gave us reason to hope.

The Hope and Promise of Christianity:
Before Jesus left the earth to be with His Father in heaven, he made a promise. “I will come again,” Jesus tells us, in John 14:3. Though the day and the hour are unknown, we do know that someday Jesus is coming back to earth. “At that time the Son of Man will appear in the sky, and all the nations of the earth will mourn. They will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of the sky, with power and great glory.” Matthew 24:30. This is an event that Christians await eagerly, and we feel it may be coming soon!

Hope and Joy in the Faith:
There is a quality among believers that I don’t see anywhere else, a trait that sets them apart. I can’t explain it in just one word, but it is one single quality, maybe many qualities all mixed together to produce one single, beautiful quality. It’s the hope, peace, joy and optimism in the Second Coming of Christ. When the war with Iraq broke out, I received dozens of emails from people who were scared to death that the world would end, that the world would destroy itself with weapons, that Bush was the Antichrist predicted in the Bible. One of the people who emailed me, a guy I met in my first year of high school, could not believe the peace and assurance I felt. He thought I was totally crazy. “Why don’t you see that this will lead to the end of the world?” he asked, his own fear showing through plainly.

Why? It is because I know that the world will not end this way. I know that God is in control. I know how the world will really end, and I believe what Jesus said about the world as we approach the end times, “You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come.” Matthew 24:6.

I see events unfolding that were predicted in the Bible long ago, and I know there are more to come before the world reaches its end. And, if the Bible continues with it’s 100% accuracy like it has in the past, then I feel assured that the rapture of the church will occur before I see the true devastation as history comes to it’s close as we know it.

But you cannot share this hope if you do not accept Christ! I could write forever, proving the existence of God, the reliability of the Bible and I could outline events that have come and events yet to come, but still many would not believe. I cannot understand this, but I bear it with patience. How desperately I want those that I love and care about to come to Jesus and find salvation in Him! You don’t know how my prayers are filled with pleas for guidance in helping others find Him! I have friends now who are so dear to me that I would cut off my feet for them to be saved, and I can imagine the joy in my mind at knowing they are saved, knowing that together we can share this wonderful faith and hope. Knowing that our friendship will not end with the end of our physical lives, but carry on into eternity!

The Reliability of the Bible:
The Bible is the most printed book in the world, in fact, it was the first to hit the printing press after it was invented. You can find it in tons of different languages and translations, you even see them in hotel rooms. Everyone knows of some Bible story, whether it is Jesus feeding the five thousand, Noah and his ark, or Moses and the Ten Commandments. Many people even know the Ten Commandments off by heart, believers or not. It is the most popular book in the world, and with good reason! It is the road map of life, the key to a happy and fulfilled life, and it provides the formula for eternal life with God.

Many archeologists have spent their lives trying to disprove the Bible by searching for historical, Biblical sites and not finding them. However, after trying to disprove the Bible and being unsuccessful, they have become Christians! Teams of people have gone out over the centuries and rediscovered places mentioned in the Bible. For example, a group of people went into the desert that Moses wandered through with the Jews in Exodus to see if there were actually any signs of a movement of a massive population. After all, Moses and his followers wandered there for forty years! Surely, some sign of them remained.

Sure enough, they reported that it appeared that a huge tribe of people wandered through that desert during the predicted time of Moses in Exodus. The same thing was done when someone tried to disprove the fact that Jesus actually lived. But, once again, they were disappointed with their results. A man who hated Jesus had written about Him, and his writings have been discovered. Proving the undeniable existence of Jesus Christ on this earth.

Many of the original scrolls have been recovered, a major step in proving the validity of the Bible. But none of this should come as a surprise. If there is a God, of course He would want to communicate with His people. He would want them to know about Him, His commandments and the promises he made concerning our futures. And God isn’t one for keeping secrets. He wants to lead people to the truth. As we can see, this has been accomplished as more and more often, people are confirming the truth of the Bible, even if it is much to their dismay.

Besides the many facts that have been proven out of the Bible about people and places, the Bible is loaded with logical advice about how to live a good life. The Bible is not a book of nonsense. It talks about everything from how to be a good wife and mother, how to avoid conflict and how to clean mildew! The Ten Commandments aren’t there to restrict our lives, but to enhance them, because if we follow them we will be blessed.

I know many people who claim to believe in God, but who doubt or disbelieve the Bible on the basis that it makes no sense to them, or that they can’t understand it. First of all, I can argue that point on the undeniable fact that I am not the brightest person on earth and yet I can understand it. It does make sense. What part of “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth” is so hard to understand? Granted, parts of the Bible are a little confusing and take some focus and interpretation to figure out, but God wants us to understand and when we are trying to seek the truth, He will help us. In fact, He promises He will, “I love those who love me, and those who seek me find me.” Proverbs 8:17.

I believe the real reason people choose to discredit the Bible is because they are afraid to be accountable to God for their behavior. God is a loving, merciful God and He is slow to anger. But He is also infinitely holy and can not tolerate or accept sin. We have to turn to Jesus to get forgiveness, but we also have to make an effort to live the righteous life that the Bible teaches. And so many of today’s “pleasures” are sinful to God, therefore many reject the Bible as false so they can avoid falling into that code of ethics.

The Real Pleasures Are Of God:
Yes, sometimes it is hard to resist the temptation we are presented with in our day to day, but the pleasures of this earth are nothing compared to the pleasures we will receive in heaven. He promises that we will not lack any thing, that our dreams will be fulfilled beyond the comprehension of our imaginations. Isn’t an eternity of unimaginable happiness and pleasure worth living according to His Word for our short lives on this earth?

Walking In The Light:
I borrowed this subtitle right out of my Bible because I find it so fitting. Who wants to walk in darkness? As children, many of us were afraid of the dark, and so we should still be afraid of walking in darkness, or living an evil life. “…God is light; in him there is no darkness at all.” 1 John 1:5. This chapter insists that we are all full of sin, and that anyone who claims to be without sin is a liar. It also states clearly that “If we claim to have fellowship with him, yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live by the truth.” 1 John 1:6. This is so important. It is not enough to just claim to be Christians. We have to live according to the laws that God has given us, so by doing this we set an example for others. And God promises to reward us for this many times throughout the Bible.

“My dear children, I write this to you so that you will not sin. But if anybody does sin, we have one who speaks to the Father in our defense – Jesus Christ, the Righteous One. He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world.” 1 John 2:1. It is a comforting thought to know that God understands the weaknesses of human nature, and He is a merciful God and promises to forgive us when we stray. But through God we can gain the strength to resist sin.

Galatians 5 labels sinful acts into these categories: “sexual immorality, impurity, and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissension, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like.” Galatians 5:19-21. I am sure all of us have been guilty of many of these things in our lives. The point is not to say that if we have done this we are doomed: this is to say that these are sinful acts, the way of darkness, and if we love God we are to avoid them. 1 John 1:9 says “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” God will forgive us if we repent, but the purpose is to stop sinning! We can’t just do things because we know that we will be forgiven.

Galatians 5 also tells us of the fruit of the Spirit, which would lead us down the path of light, “love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self control.” Galatians 5:22-23. We are to live like Jesus, who demonstrated His love in the greatest way; by laying down His life for us so that we may receive salvation through Him. He was a man who lived and entirely sinless life, and yet He took all of our sins upon Himself and paid the ultimate sacrifice so that we may live eternally. And how can we show that we love Jesus? By loving others, being patient and kind, having gentleness and self control and so forth.

“But if anyone obeys his word, God’s love is truly made complete in him.” 1 John 2:5. It has been in my own experience that when I am living in some kind of sin and feeling guilty, every part of me is unhappy and unproductive. But when I have peace of mind and my conscience is clear, I am happiest. These words are all so practical.

Bible Prophecy:
It’s Really Isn’t Scary
Many people, even Christians, do not study Bible prophecy because it frightens them. They would rather not fill their minds with horrible images of earthquakes, a darkened sun, blood raining from the sky and terrible plagues. But Christians have reason to hope, not fear, the end times.

Really, Bible prophecy is just a warning in advance of what is to come. Why? Because God loves us so much, and he wants us to go to Him before it’s too late! There is no reason why we have to suffer through the coming judgements. God has given us an opportunity to know the truth, choose Him, and live eternally!

But even those who do not choose God before the Rapture, God loves them even enough to offer them a second chance, though far less appealing than the first. The Rapture of believers on earth, which is when Jesus calls His people home, is not the last call. The Bible says that after the Rapture there will be a huge number of people turning to God. I guess for some people it just takes something extraordinary and catastrophic to prove that God is there, and He loves us. But it’s not going to be a pretty time in history, living on earth after the Rapture. The Antichrist will see to that. There will be 21 separate judgements, which I will briefly outline further along. Each one will be progressively worse than the last and most of the earth’s population will not survive. But if you choose Christ then, live or die, you will not have the fear of the unbelievers.

But why not choose God now, and escape that hell on earth altogether?

Reliability of Biblical Prophecy
God did not dedicate almost 30% of the Bible to prophecy for no reason. He did it to prepare us, but not only that, to prove that He exists. In LaHaye’s Merciful God of Prophecy he talks about a Bible prophecy expert who says there are approximately one thousand prophecies in the Bible, half of which have already been fulfilled. Also, many people are aware that the Bible predicted Jesus’ first coming, and gave the many specifications about His birth, every single one of which was fulfilled. Well, the Bible gives three times as many prophecies about Jesus’ Second Coming as it did His first. And if the Bible proved 100% reliable about His first coming, shouldn’t we be willing to believe He will be 100% accurate regarding the Second Coming?

In the second book in the Left Behind series, called Tribulation Force, my favorite character Dr. Tsion Ben-Judah, an orthodox Jew and internationally respected scholar, goes on TV to talk about who he believes fill the identity of the Messiah. This amazing part of the book begins on page 387, and when I read it I get chills. Ben-Judah, who was also left behind after the Rapture because he did not believe Jesus was the Messiah, gives us many of the extremely selective qualifications about the Messiah, as laid out in the Old Testament.

At the end of his long, impressive speech about his studies, he concludes with this, “Was there one born in Bethlehem of a virgin, a descendent of King David, traced back to our father Abraham, who was taken to Egypt, called back to minister in Galilee, preceded by a forerunner, rejected by God’s own people, betrayed for thirty pieces of silver, pierced without breaking a bone, buried with the rich and resurrected? According to one of the greatest of all Hebrew prophets, there would be exactly 483 years between the decree to rebuild the wall and the city of Jerusalem ‘in troublesome times’ before the Messiah would be cut off for the sins of the people…Exactly 483 years after the rebuilding of Jerusalem and its walls, Jesus Christ offered Himself to the nation of Israel.”

Jesus Christ is the Messiah, as predicted so long ago in the Bible. But even more prophecies and promises were made regarding the Second Coming! I take comfort in seeing the hand of God in the world even now. He is in control, and all the events taking place are setting up the stage for one final conflict between good and evil. And with God on our side, there’s no way we can lose!

The New Testament teaches us about the signs of the end times. This is to prepare us for the most anticipated event for the last two thousand years: the Second Coming of Christ. We can see even now that some of these prophecies are being fulfilled and we know that the Rapture could occur at any time. Through prophecy, God has revealed Himself to us, what He is like and that He surely exists. Since those prophecies came true, we can be assured that those left unfulfilled will soon be fulfilled, as the Scriptures have been proven reliable. Which proves that God is a reliable God, and in times when reliability is so rare, it’s a great joy to know He will always be there for us!

Signs of the End Times
Jesus warned us against date setting in the Bible when He said, “No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.” Matthew 24:36. We cannot know for sure when Jesus will come back, but we know that He will, and He gave us a method to prepare.

Tim LaHaye tells us in Are We Living In The End Times that this generation (which is generally accepted to be the generation who saw Israel become a nation) has more reason than any other to believe that we may see His coming. However, he insists that he will not predict it, since He could delay it for another twenty-five, fifty or even more years.

The signs we see now were not even present fifty or sixty years ago. Many people deny these signs, but they are obvious to those who know their Bible and who seek the truth. One example is Israel becoming a nation in 1948. Before then, it was unthinkable to people that the Jews would once again have a homeland, a nation. Never before has a nation that had been out of its homeland for so long, seventeen centuries, and dispersed through the world come back together as a nation. This coming together of the Jews was not an accident, it was predicted in Ezekiel 37, thousands of years ago! This is a major sign of the end times, but it is not the only one.

Jesus warned against false teachers in Matthew 24. Now more than ever there is an increase in false doctrines being spread. “For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and will deceive many.” Matthew 24:5. Do you need references of false teachers to be convinced? There was Jim Jones and his followers in Guyana in 1978. The Branch Davidians led by David Koresh in Texas in 1993. And don’t forget the Heaven’s Gate group in 1997 in California. Many people are using cults to deceive people and lead them astray.

In Daniel 12, he prophesized that in the end times there would be an increase in travel and knowledge. For centuries the rate travel and knowledge never increased. But it has been in the last few decades that we have seen a huge rate of increase in knowledge and travel. Cars, trains, planes, ships and even rockets have taken the place of horseback travel. The television and radio made a breakthrough in how knowledge is shared, but nothing like the internet has done. It’s the “information superhighway,” and all these things were told thousands of years ago by a man who probably couldn’t comprehend what is happening now either.

These are only some signs of the end times, and as whole books are written on such matters, I will not go into it any further, but you can read them for yourself. They are extremely interesting, proof that prophecy is being fulfilled and we have the greatest yet to look forward to!

There’s nothing better than being prepared! I am going to take the next part out of Are We Living In The End Times because I believe it is so important. I will borrow their headings, and fill in my own comments about it.

A. Know your Bible! What better way to be prepared for the coming events than to read it on your own? It will prepare you for the deceptive ways of Satan. Jesus said, “the truth shall make you free.” Find the truth in your Bible!

B. Test the spirits! (1 John 4:1) Everything you read or learn should be compared to the Bible to ensure that it is Biblically sound. The Bible tells us not to believe anything until we have tested it to be sure it is true. That is why we test the Bible to historical facts to see that the Bible is also true. Many deceivers will come and try to teach things based on Christian beliefs, or so they say. You should consult your Bible to be sure that they are not teaching anything falsely.

C. Seek God’s guidance in life and teaching! (Proverbs 3:6) God promises us to guide us and help us is we seek Him! If you are earnest and willing, He will guide you to find the truth.

D. Avoid immorality! When you are living a life of guilt and sin, your head gets clouded with desire to continue to sin, as well as guilt for doing wrong. How can you focus on God if you are not able to clear your mind of sin?

E. Share your faith aggressively with others! Nothing builds on your own faith than helping others find the truth as well. I know this from personal experience as well, and it’s an amazing truth. The world is crying out for spiritual truth, and if you know it, then don’t keep it to yourself!

F. Walk in the spirit! (Ephesians 5:17-21) This is one of my favorite passages in the Bible! As we live moral, pure live by walking in the spirit, the Holy Spirit will be in us, allowing us to know the difference between lies and the truth.

The Tribulation:
This is the part of prophecy that everyone finds so terrifying, and they ask, “How could a loving God inflict such judgement?” My question is, “How else could He get your attention?” Many of us live significantly more comfortable lives than anyone in any generation before. We have indoor bathrooms, electricity, heating, air conditioners, and the ability to travel farther and faster than ever before. Truth be told, we have been abundantly blessed. But do we recognize these blessings as a gift from God? Not usually. God is not waiting anxiously to cast horrific judgements out on His people to get their attention either. In fact, He is calling as many people to Him today so that they will avoid these judgements. These will start after the Antichrist, who will become the most powerful world ruler in history, signs a peace treaty with Israel. Let me give you a brief breakdown about what the Bible says will come during what is often called the Tribulation (this information is all taken out of Are We Living In The End Times):

The Seven Seal Judgements: The Tribulation Begins

1. The first seal: a white horse (Revelation 6:1-2) This is the introduction of the first of the “four horsemen of the Apocalypse,” the Antichrist, who will promise peace to the world and rise to power, but the peace will be false and it will not last.
2. The second seal: a red horse (Revelation 6:3-4) This is generally accepted to be the beginning of World War Three, when three “kings” oppose the Antichrist and he takes swift, deadly action against them.
3. The third seal: a black horse (Revelation 6:5-6) This horse represents the famine and disease, which often follow war.
4. The fourth seal: a pale horse (Revelation 6:7-8) This horse is pale because is symbolizes death. These first four seal judgements alone are set to wipe out one quarter of the earth’s population.
5. The fifth seal: the martyrs (Revelation 6:9-11) This represents the Tribulation saints that will die because of the forces of the Antichrist. This judgement will not actually be seen on earth.
6. The sixth seal: the great earthquake (Revelation 6:12-17) This will be an earthquake of unimaginable magnitude, for “every mountain and island was moved out of it’s place,” in the Revelation of John.
7. The seventh seal: the trumpet judgements (Revelation 8:1-2) This judgement marks the end of the seal judgements and the beginning of the trumpet judgements, which are worse. It is marked by “silence in heaven for about half an hour.”

The Trumpet Judgements: It Gets Worse

1. The first trumpet: hail, fire and blood (Revelation 8:7) This is not something I would want to live through. Fire, ice and rain falling from the sky, but not only that, there’s blood too.
2. The second trumpet: a mountain of fire (Revelation 8:8-9) This terrible judgement is “something like a great mountain burning with fire,” which has been interpreted as most likely being a huge meteorite. It will be “thrown into the sea, and a third of the sea became blood.” Imagine the diseases spread through water after this.
3. The third trumpet: a star called Wormwood (Revelation 8:10-11) Another meteorite will crash to the earth and fall into a third of the world’s rivers and springs, making them poisonous.
4. The fourth trumpet: darkness (Revelation 8:12) “A third of the sun was struck, a third of the moon, and a third of the stars, so that a third of them were darkened; a third of the day did not shine, and likewise the night.” This will make the day shorter, the night darker, and even when there is light, it won’t be as bright as now.
5. The fifth trumpet: the locusts (Revelation 9:1-11) This is the first of the three woes, pronounced by the angel, a sure sign that the coming judgements are much worse. In this judgement, which is best understood when read, locusts with a scorpion-like power will be set free and will attack unbelievers. They will be seeking believers, but believers will be supernaturally protected. This will occur for five months, and “men will seek death and will not find it.” People will want to die, but they won’t be able to!
6. The sixth trumpet judgement: four angels released (Revelation 9:13-19) This is the second woe; the four angels who are bound at the river of Euphrates will be released to lead an army of 200 million “horsemen.” They will kill with fire, smoke and brimstone. This is portrayed in the book Assassins of the Left Behind series.
7. The seventh trumpet: loud voices in heaven (Revelation 11:15-19) This is the third woe; this is the end of the trumpet judgements leading to the bowl judgements. It is the sound of celebration in heaven, as the battle between Christ and Satan reaches it’s mid-point and they look forward to the victory Christ will soon achieve.

The Bowl Judgements: The Great Tribulation

1. The first bowl: foul and loathsome sores (Revelation 16:2) God responds to the people who choose to worship the Antichrist by sending upon them “foul and loathsome” sores, or boils.
2. The second bowl: the sea turns to blood (Revelation 16:3) Unlike before, where only a third of the sea turned to blood, not the entire sea is blood, and every living thing in it will die.
3. The third bowl: the rivers and springs turn to blood (Revelation 16:4-7) This shows that the world will now be without drinking water. If Jesus can turn water to wine, why can God not turn water to blood?
4. The fourth bowl: the sun scorches men (Revelation 16:8-9) Those who remain unrepentant will now suffer even more when God turns up the heat on the sun, scorching men with “great heat.”
5. The fifth bowl: darkness on the Beast’s kingdom (Revelation 16:10-11) The Beast, we know, is the Antichrist, and we know he will set up his kingdom in Babylon. This is the kind of darkness you can feel, for they will be in pain and totally blind.
6. The sixth bowl: the Euphrates dries up (Revelation 16:12) This is pretty easy to understand; the river dries up. But, this allows the Antichrist to move his army into the valley of Megiddo, where the final battle will take place. (Napoleon called this valley “the most ideal, natural battlefield in the world.)
7. The seventh bowl: the greatest earthquake in history (Revelation 16:17-21) While a voice is heard saying “It is done!” the most severe and violent earthquake the world has ever known will shake the earth. It crumbles Babylon, the Antichrist’s kingdom, into three parts, and gigantic hailstones rain down from the sky. But after all of this, do people repent to God? Nope. This ends the bowl judgements, and leaves only one event left to take place. That, of course, is the Second Coming of Jesus Christ with his army of saints to fight the final battle in history. I don’t think I need to tell you who wins.

As you can easily imagine, no one will want to live through this, and many won’t. But those who do will want to die. I find it impossible to imagine that people could survive this, but they will, and the end result will be the final battle of good versus evil: the battle of Armageddon.

Tim LaHaye teaches that we are to try to interpret the Bible literally whenever possible, because God wants us to understand, not keep secrets. Also, we know that He is capable of anything. LaHaye writes this in The Merciful God of Prophecy:

“I’d rather face God one day and hear Him ask, ‘Tim, why didn’t you seek a ‘deeper meaning,’ a more sophisticated understanding of the words in my Book?’ than to hear Him sadly wonder, ‘Tim, why didn’t you simply believe what I told you?’”

And I feel the same way. At any rate, even those who do look for deeper meanings in the coming judgements to this earth, they won’t be pleasant. Please, don’t wait until you have no choice but to live through them.

I hope this has touched your heart in some way, helped you see the truth. I am telling you the things I have learned through Bible study, with the help of great authors and Bible experts like Tim LaHaye. If you are confused or interested, please go look for the books I listed near the beginning. I don’t know everything, and I certainly don’t claim to know what God is thinking at any particular moment, but I sincerely believe that the Bible is here to help us try to understand Him. And I know that God loves us, and since the beginning of time He has been proving just that.

As I said earlier, I hope you have taken the time to read and try to understand this. I will continue learning and growing, trying to understand more, trying to get better at sharing and professing my faith. And, of course, I share this with you because I care about you, because I want our friendship to extend beyond death into eternity.

I feel excited at sharing this with you, and I long for you to understand the peace of mind that I cherish. It’s so simple to accept God’s gift of eternal life. It’s no more difficult than this simple prayer:

“Dear Father, I know that I am a sinner. I know that I don’t deserve the gift of eternal life that you offer. But I thank you for sending your only Son, Jesus Christ, to die for my sins so that I may enter your kingdom. Forgive me for my sins, and please work in my life to make me the person you want me to be. I give my life to you. In Jesus’ name I pray, amen.”

I hope that soon I will have the opportunity to rejoice with you over your new faith in Jesus Christ! May God bless you, so that you may feel His presence in your life!
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