Why the title, “Millions of Lies?”
Quite simply because that is exactly what most people have heard today in relation to what it means to be a follower, or disciple, of Jesus Christ.
If you are thinking about leaving this page right now, please know that what you will find here is not another, “Come to Jesus and everything will be fixed,” message!
Many people claim to be ‘Christian’ but, in this western world of relative comfort, luxury and deception, the reality is that few know what Christianity truly means.
Many have been told that Jesus is the answer to all their life’s troubles and when they ‘accept Him into their heart,’ just like a vending machine, they will receive all of His promises and their life will be ‘fixed.’
Well, two things Jesus said were that in this life, those who follow Him faithfully will be hated by many. He did say that we will have rest for our souls but He did not say we would have no opposition or that our lives would suddenly be all rosy and comfortable. Others believe that Christianity is a false hope, only for the gullible, depressed or those unhappy with their lives. Yet others have been told that if you ‘sew into their ministry,’ (AKA give them your money), you will receive abundant blessings.
Many more have heard that to be a Christian, all you have to do is believe that Jesus Christ is God and that He died for your sins then say a prayer, ‘making Him your Lord,’ and you will go to heaven when you die.
While there may be varying elements of truth in SOME of the above points, just like a crystal clear glass of water with a drop of cyanide, most of it is deadly. The real truth is that Christianity is far removed from what it ‘preached’ in most pulpits today. Indeed, such lies ARE for the gullible.
There are so many lies flowing freely from most who claim to be Christian that it is incredible that there are ANY true followers of Christ in this current age, especially in the western world.
What did Jesus say about this? Let’s start with how difficult He said the path of the Christian would be:
“You can enter true life only through the narrow gate. The gate to hell is very wide, and there is plenty of room on the road that leads there. Many people go that way. But the gate that opens the way to true life is narrow. And the road that leads there is hard to follow. Only a few people find it.”
What does the Bible say about those who truly follow Christ in the manner He expects? Apostle Paul had the following to say:
Everyone who wants to live showing true devotion to God in Christ Jesus will be persecuted. People who are evil and cheat others will become worse and worse. They will fool others, but they will also be fooling themselves.
2 Timothy 3:12-13.
Perhaps we should take a look at those who have endured afflictions, imprisonment and torture for the name of Christ in Communist countries and ask them whether what Paul said about persecution is true or not. Type ‘Richard Wurmbrand’ into Google and have a look at what he endured in Communist prisons being tortured daily for fourteen years!
Well, at this point you may be thinking, “Why on earth would anyone want to follow Christ if He promises a life of persecution and hardship?”
The answer to that comes down to the truth of who He is, who we are and what we deserve.
Jesus proved Himself to truly be God when He fulfilled over three hundred prophecies about Himself written in the Old Testament hundreds of years before He came to this earth taking on human form, not the least of which was the prophecy that He would be crucified (crucifixion was not even invented at the time that prophecy was written!), suffer death, be buried and be raised back to life three days later, be seen alive by over five hundred people and then be seen physically ascending back to heaven!
For those who are skeptical, we still have the original texts (hundreds of them in fact) containing those and many more prophecies written hundreds of years before Christ (the B.C. of our calendar). Perhaps you have heard of the dead sea scrolls. If not, Google them and see for yourself.
Regarding the authority of the scriptures, both the accuracy of the fulfilled prophecies and the words of scripture themselves determine that.
All Scripture is given by God. And all Scripture is useful for teaching and for showing people what is wrong in their lives. It is useful for correcting faults and teaching the right way to live. Using the Scriptures, those who serve God will be prepared and will have everything they need to do every good work.
2 Timothy 3:16-17.
Here is what Apostle Paul said regarding the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ:
Now, brothers and sisters, I want you to remember the Good News I told you. You received that Good News message, and you continue to base your life on it. That Good News, the message you heard from me, is God’s way to save you. But you must continue believing it. If you don’t, you believed for nothing. I gave you the message that I received. I told you the most important truths: that Christ died for our sins, as the Scriptures say; that he was buried and was raised to life on the third day, as the Scriptures say; and that he appeared to Peter and then to the twelve apostles. After that Christ appeared to more than 500 other believers at the same time. Most of them are still living today, but some have died. Then he appeared to James and later to all the apostles. Last of all, he appeared to me. I was different, like a baby born before the normal time.
1 Corinthians 15:1-8.
So then, if Jesus Christ is God, and He proved it by His death and resurrection, who are we and why does it matter who Jesus is?
The simple answer is that we are His creation and every one of us has to give an answer for our lives the day we die. We do not cease to exist when our bodies die as some people believe. Perhaps it is easier to understand when we consider ourselves as souls with a physical body rather than physical bodies with a soul. The physical body dies but the soul lives for eternity and our eternal destiny is determined by the lives we live in our physical bodies. The judge of that determination is none other than Jesus Christ Himself.
The Bible states:
Everyone must die once. Then they are judged.
Before God and Jesus Christ, I give you a command. Christ Jesus is the one who will judge all people–those who are living and those who have died. He is coming again to rule in his kingdom. So I give you this command:
Tell everyone God’s message. Be ready at all times to do whatever is needed. Tell people what they need to do, tell them when they are doing wrong, and encourage them. Do this with great patience and careful teaching.
2 Timothy 4:1-2.
So then, perhaps you are thinking that is good news because you consider yourself to be a good person and God will be pleased with you on judgement day. It would be a wise thing rather to look at His absolute standards. They are what we will be judged by, not our relative standards.
The standards God has set are made clear in both the Old Testament and the New Testament of the Bible. The Old Testament example which most have heard of are the ten commandments written on stone tablets by the finger of God Himself, given to Moses on Mt. Sinai and recorded in Exodus chapter 20, verses 1 through 17.
Here’s a few further examples given throughout the New Testament:
Surely you know that people who do wrong will not get to enjoy God’s kingdom. Don’t be fooled. These are the people who will not get to enjoy his kingdom: those who sin sexually, those who worship idols, those who commit adultery, men who let other men use them for sex or who have sex with other men, those who steal, those who are greedy, those who drink too much, those who abuse others with insults, and those who cheat.
1 Corinthians 6:9-10.
That list alone would make most people these days blush with embarrassment but Jesus made things even clearer during His sermon on the mount:
….“I tell you, unless your righteousness greatly exceeds that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will never enter the kingdom from heaven!” “You have heard that it was told those who lived long ago, ‘You must not murder,’ and ‘Whoever murders will be subject to punishment.’ But I say to you, anyone who is angry with his brother without a cause will be subject to punishment. And whoever says to his brother ‘Raka!’ will be subject to the Council. And whoever says ‘You fool!’ will be subject to hell fire.”
“You have heard that it was said, ‘You must not commit adultery.’ But I tell you that if a man looks at a woman and wants to sin sexually with her, he has already committed that sin with her in his mind.“
“You have heard that it was said, ‘An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth.’ But I tell you, don’t fight back against someone who wants to do harm to you. If they hit you on the right cheek, let them hit the other cheek too.”
“You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I tell you, love your enemies. Pray for those who treat you badly. If you do this, you will be children who are truly like your Father in heaven. He lets the sun rise for all people, whether they are good or bad. He sends rain to those who do right and to those who do wrong. If you love only those who love you, why should you get a reward for that? Even the tax collectors do that. And if you are nice only to your friends, you are no better than anyone else. Even the people who don’t know God are nice to their friends. What I am saying is that you must be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect.”
Jesus also summed up the ten commandments in the following manner:
Then one of the scribes came near and heard the Sadducees arguing with one another. He saw how well Jesus answered them, so he asked him, “Which commandment is the most important of them all?” Jesus answered, “The most important is, ‘Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God is one Lord, and you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘You must love your neighbor as yourself.’ No other commandment is greater than these.“
Perhaps the most dire warning of all though was spoken by Jesus to Apostle John when He gave him the book of Revelation on the isle of Patmos:
Then he told me, “It has happened! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. I will freely give a drink from the spring of the water of life to the one who is thirsty. The person who conquers will inherit these things. I will be his God, and he will be my son. But people who are cowardly, unfaithful, detestable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, AND ALL LIARS will find themselves in the lake that burns with fire and sulfur. This is the second death.“
Given the vast coverage of the above scriptures, it is pretty clear to see that there are none who have fulfilled those requirements perfectly. Everyone is guilty. Be honest and weigh up your own life (all of it) according to those standards!
Apostle Paul has this to say on the matter:
So are we Jews better than other people? No, we have already said that those who are Jews, as well as those who are not Jews, are the same. They are all guilty of sin.
…all have sinned and fallen short of God’s glory.
What exactly is sin then? Again, we go to the inspired word of God:
Anyone who sins breaks God’s law. Yes, sinning is the same as living against God’s law.
1 John 3:4.
So, given that God’s standard is absolute perfection and His eternal judgement is hellfire for all who have broken His laws, that puts EVERYONE in a dire predicament. PLEASE, TAKE THIS SERIOUSLY!! YOUR ETERNAL DESTINY IS DETERMINED BY YOUR RESPONSE TO THIS REALITY!!
Consider what the Bible has to say about eternal punishment:
They will drink the wine of God’s anger. This wine is prepared with all its strength in the cup of God’s anger. They will be tortured with burning sulfur before the holy angels and the Lamb. And the smoke from their burning pain will rise forever and ever. There will be no rest, day or night….”
The torment is FOREVER and it is in the PRESENCE of the holy angels AND JESUS CHRIST HIMSELF (the Lamb of God).
Jesus is SERIOUS about sin and so should we be too. After He had said that even looking upon a woman with lust is to commit adultery with her in your heart, He went on to say this:
“If your right eye makes you sin, take it out and throw it away. It is better to lose one part of your body than to have your whole body thrown into hell. If your right hand makes you sin, cut it off and throw it away. It is better to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to go into hell.”
I hope by now you are beginning to get a picture of how serious this is and how much danger you are in! I cannot emphasize it enough. ALL have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God and ALL are in danger of hellfire for eternity!
So then, what hope is there? What can be done? The answer my friends, is written clearly in scripture:
When people sin, they earn what sin pays–death. But God gives his people a free gift–eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Jesus Christ, when He was made man, is the only one to walk this earth free from sin though He was tempted in every way as we are.
For this reason, Jesus had to be made like us, his brothers and sisters, in every way. He became like people so that he could be their merciful and faithful high priest in service to God. Then he could bring forgiveness for the people’s sins. And now he can help those who are tempted. He is able to help because he himself suffered and was tempted.
We see in the following scripture that death came into the world through Adam (the first man) when he sinned:
Just as sin entered the world through one man, and death resulted from sin, therefore everyone dies, because everyone has sinned. Certainly sin was in the world before the Law was given, but no record of sin is kept when there is no Law. Nevertheless, death ruled from the time of Adam to Moses, even over those who did not sin in the same way Adam did when he disobeyed. He is a foreshadowing of the one who would come.
In the Old Testament days before Jesus came to the earth as a man and lived a perfect life, the priests were required to offer up sacrifices to God on a regular basis for the cleansing of the sins of the people. However, Jesus Himself, being made human and living perfectly according to the laws of His Father, offered up Himself as a perfect sacrifice, once for all as we see here:
So Jesus is the kind of high priest we need. He is holy. He has no sin in him. He is pure and not influenced by sinners. And he is raised above the heavens. He is not like those other priests. They had to offer sacrifices every day, first for their own sins, and then for the sins of the people. But Jesus doesn’t need to do that. He offered only one sacrifice for all time. He offered himself.
Christ died for us when we were unable to help ourselves. We were living against God, but at just the right time Christ died for us. Very few people will die to save the life of someone else, even if it is for a good person. Someone might be willing to die for an especially good person. But Christ died for us while we were still sinners, and by this God showed how much he loves us. We have been made right with God by the blood sacrifice of Christ. So through Christ we will surely be saved from God’s anger.
Knowing that we have all sinned and fallen short of the glory of God and that as a result, we are all under the condemnation of our sins, ready to be cast into hell after we die and are judged righteously by Jesus Christ, what can we do to be made right with Him? How can we be saved from His wrath?
The day that Apostle Peter preached to the very men who had crucified Jesus, they asked him that very question.
Here is that dialogue in scripture:
Let all the house of Israel therefore know for certain that God has made him both Lord and Christ, this Jesus whom you crucified.” Now when they heard this they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Brothers, what shall we do?” And Peter said to them, “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is for you and for your children and for all who are far off, everyone whom the Lord our God calls to himself.” And with many other words he bore witness and continued to exhort them, saying, “Save yourselves from this crooked generation.”
We MUST REPENT! That means to turn from our sins and forsake them. If we are serious, God the Father will, because of the sacrifice of His Son Jesus Christ on the cross, wipe our slate clean (forgive us of our past sins), regenerate us (a supernatural work through the Holy Spirit) and grant us His grace which is, among other things, the power to overcome sin. He then expects us to go and sin no more just as Jesus said to the woman caught in adultery.
Then Jesus stood up and asked her, “Dear lady, where are your accusers? Hasn’t anyone condemned you?” “No one, sir,” she replied. Then Jesus said, “I don’t condemn you, either. Go home, and from now on DO NOT SIN ANY MORE.“
IF, I repeat, IF we sin after that, we will be convicted by God and we must again repent and forsake sin. So many today try to teach that even after being born again, people are still wretched sinners!! That is another gospel! It is a lie from the devil to keep people in bondage to sin and prevent them from having a healthy fear of the LORD and overcoming sin.
Apostle John has this to say:
My little children, I’m writing these things to you so that you might not sin. Yet if anyone does sin, we have an advocate with the Father—Jesus, the Messiah, one who is righteous.
1 John 2:1.
Make no mistake, ALL have sinned and ALL need to repent and forsake their sin:
If we say that we have no sin, we are fooling ourselves, and the truth is not in us. But if we confess our sins, God will forgive us. We can trust God to do this. He always does what is right. He will make us clean from all the wrong things we have done.
1 John 1:8-9.
He who keeps his sins secret will not do well; but one who is open about them, and gives them up, will get mercy.
Jesus also spoke to Nicodemus (a man of the Pharisees) who came to Him privately at night. Jesus told him of the necessity of being born again (born of the Spirit of God from above). While we are in sin, our spirit is dead to God. Our bodies have been born of water (in the womb) but our spirit needs to receive birth. No flesh shall enter the kingdom of God, only those who are born supernaturally of the Spirit of God (the Holy Spirit). They shall receive a glorified body when they are resurrected as Christ was and did.
Here is Jesus’ dialogue with Nicodemus (some of you will recognise the famous and all too often misquoted text “for God so loved the world…” in verse 16):
There was a man named Nicodemus, one of the Pharisees. He was an important Jewish leader. One night he came to Jesus and said, “Teacher, we know that you are a teacher sent from God. No one can do these miraculous signs that you do unless they have God’s help.” Jesus answered, “I assure you, everyone must be born again. Anyone who is not born again cannot be in God’s kingdom.” Nicodemus said, “How can a man who is already old be born again? Can he go back into his mother’s womb and be born a second time?” Jesus answered, “Believe me when I say that everyone must be born from water and the Spirit. Anyone who is not born from water and the Spirit cannot enter God’s kingdom. The only life people get from their human parents is physical. But the new life that the Spirit gives a person is spiritual. Don’t be surprised that I told you, ‘You must be born again.’ The wind blows wherever it wants to. You hear it, but you don’t know where it is coming from or where it is going. It is the same with everyone who is born from the Spirit.” Nicodemus asked, “How is all this possible?” Jesus said, “You are an important teacher of Israel, and you still don’t understand these things? The truth is, we talk about what we know. We tell about what we have seen. But you people don’t accept what we tell you. I have told you about things here on earth, but you do not believe me. So I’m sure you will not believe me if I tell you about heavenly things! The only one who has ever gone up to heaven is the one who came down from heaven–the Son of Man. “Moses lifted up the snake in the desert. It is the same with the Son of Man. He must be lifted up too. Then everyone who believes in him can have eternal life.” Yes, God loved the world so much that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him would not be lost but have eternal life. God sent his Son into the world. He did not send him to judge the world guilty, but to save the world through him. People who believe in God’s Son are not judged guilty. But people who do not believe are already judged, because they have not believed in God’s only Son. They are judged by this fact: The light has come into the world. But they did not want light. They wanted darkness, because they were doing evil things. Everyone who does evil hates the light. They will not come to the light, because the light will show all the bad things they have done. But anyone who follows the true way comes to the light. Then the light will show that whatever they have done was done through God.
Once we are born again (born from above), there are expectations as mentioned earlier. Jesus expects us, by the power of His Spirit working in us to be overcomers and to obey His commandments:
If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love. I have told you this so that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be complete.
Getting back to what I said at the beginning, in this life we WILL be hated for speaking the REAL truth of the gospel. Expect adversity and hatred towards you when you walk as Jesus expects:
“Listen! I am sending you, and you will be like sheep among wolves. So be smart like snakes. But also be like doves and don’t hurt anyone. Be careful! There are people who will arrest you and take you to be judged. They will whip you in their synagogues. You will be taken to stand before governors and kings. People will do this to you because you follow me. You will tell about me to those kings and governors and to the non-Jewish people. When you are arrested, don’t worry about what to say or how you should say it. At that time you will be given the words to say. It will not really be you speaking; the Spirit of your Father will be speaking through you. “Brothers will turn against their own brothers and hand them over to be killed. Fathers will hand over their own children to be killed. Children will fight against their own parents and will have them killed. Everyone will hate you because you follow me. But the one who remains faithful to the end will be saved.
If you believe that is only for the New Testament Apostles and disciples, perhaps you should look into the lives of those who have been imprisoned, burned at the stake, tossed to lions, crucified, tortured, mocked, spat at, reviled and hated all throughout the last two thousand years.
Although my own testimony pales in comparison to that of those murdered in Communist countries and other God hating dictatorships, I have been imprisoned for preaching the gospel (here in Australia no less!) and have been punched, beaten, spat at, hated, fined, mocked, called before courts and councils and falsely accused more times than I can count.
But, Jesus said the following words which have proven to be an unfathomable comfort to me so many times. I was even quoting aloud the following scriptures in much joy in prison much to the bewilderment of the prison guard!!:
Great blessings belong to those who suffer persecution for doing what is right. God’s kingdom belongs to them. “People will insult you and hurt you. They will lie and say all kinds of evil things about you because you follow me. But when they do that, know that great blessings belong to you. Be happy about it. Be very glad because you have a great reward waiting for you in heaven. People did these same bad things to the prophets who lived before you.
Jesus also said the following words of great comfort to those who are willing to suffer for His namesake and endure to the end whereupon a crown of righteousness shall be given to them along with everlasting life in heaven with God!! It is by this that those who have been burned alive at the stake were able to forgive their persecuters and rejoice even whist their flesh is being burned alive!:
“Come to me all of you who are tired from the heavy burden you have been forced to carry. I will give you rest. Accept my teaching. Learn from me. I am gentle and humble in spirit. And you will be able to get some rest. Yes, the teaching that I ask you to accept is easy. The load I give you to carry is light.”
Indeed, as Jesus has said, you are NOT promised ‘your best life now’ as Joel Osteen falsely claims (Google him if you’ve never heard of this but STAY AWAY from him and his deadly prosperity gospel) but He DOES promise you rest for your souls amidst persecution and suffering.
Contrary to the lies spoken in many pulpits today, there is a cost to following Jesus faithfully. Yes, grace is a free gift from God and enables you to actually live a holy life, pleasing to Him but your walk with Him WILL cost you ALL your own dreams and ambitions. It may indeed cost you your very life too. But you will gain ETERNAL life with Him in His everlasting kingdom!
Then Jesus told his disciples, “If anyone wants to follow me, he must deny himself, pick up his cross, and follow me continually. Whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it, because what profit will a person have if he gains the whole world and forfeits his life? Or what can a person give in exchange for his life? The Son of Man is going to come with his angels in his Father’s glory, and then he will repay everyone according to what he has done.
One thing that is grossly lacking in today’s false gospels is that because God has the power to cast both body and soul into hell, we SHOULD fear Him! When we are born again and walking with Him in righteousness, we need not fear condemnation in hell but we SHOULD have a fear of displeasing Him with sin. If we sin and remain unrepentant, we ARE once again in danger of HELL and must repent! Jesus will convict us IF we sin and He expects us to repent and forsake the sin IMMEDIATELY. You do NOT want to die in an unrepentant state.
I have already been kicked out of congregations for stating these things but the word of God makes it abundantly clear too many times to mention. Grab a Bible (you can download the entire Bible for free from www.e-sword.net) and see for yourself! A plain reading of the scriptures, a repentant and regenerated heart and an obedient walk with God, listening to His voice and seeking His guidance is everything you need. Too many these days claim to have degrees in theology, certificates and qualifications from Bible cemetaries (AKA seminaries) and all manner of understanding but they are VOID of sensitivity to the voice of God! They have rejected the Holy Ghost and are in danger of HELL!! From such, STAY AWAY. The Pharisees in Jesus’ day claimed to know everything about God but they failed to recognise who Jesus was when He was standing right in front of them and instead, had Him crucified for claiming to be God (which He is!)
I am writing this letter about those who are trying to lead you into the wrong way. Christ gave you a special gift. You still have this gift in you. So you don’t need anyone to teach you. The gift he gave you teaches you about everything. It is a true gift, not a false one. So continue to live in Christ, as his gift taught you. Yes, my dear children, live in him. If we do this, we can be without fear on the day when Christ comes again. We will not need to hide and be ashamed when he comes. You know that Christ always did what was right. So you know that all those who do what is right are God’s children.
1 John 2:26-29.
After this, I will pour out my Spirit on all kinds of people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your old men will have dreams, and your young men will see visions. In those days I will pour out my Spirit even on servants, both men and women. I will work wonders in the sky and on the earth. There will be blood, fire, and thick smoke. The sun will be changed into darkness, and the moon will be as red as blood. Then the great and fearful day of the LORD will come! And everyone who trusts in the LORD will be saved. There will be survivors on Mount Zion and in Jerusalem, just as the LORD said. Yes, those left alive will be the ones the LORD has called.
Then those who feared the LORD spoke with each other. The LORD listened and took note, and a scroll of remembrance was written in his presence about those who fear the LORD and honor His name. “They’ll be mine,” says the LORD of the Heavenly Armies, “in the day when I prepare my treasured possession. I’ll spare them, just as a man spares his own son who serves him. When you return, you will see the difference between the righteous and the wicked, between the one who serves God and the one who does not.”
Now that you’ve heard the truth, what are you going to do? Do not wait until tomorrow. That is not guaranteed. As the scriptures state:
That’s why the Spirit said, “If you hear God’s voice today, don’t be stubborn as in the past when you turned against God.” Who were those who heard God’s voice and turned against him? It was all the people Moses led out of Egypt. And who was God angry with for 40 years? He was angry with those who sinned. And their dead bodies were left in the desert.
In the Old Testament, when God Himself through Moses lead the Israelites in the wilderness for forty years on the way from captivity in Egypt to the promised land, and despite having seen the miraculous works of God first hand, many of them grumbled and moaned and gave in to sinfulness. As a result, God was not well pleased with many of them and most of them were judged, died and went to hell. A good overview of this account can be found in the New Testament in 1Corinthians 10.
The call is upon you TODAY. That call is to heed the warnings, repent of your sin and forsake it, be born again and walk with Jesus Christ in obedience.
And I saw those who had died, great and small, standing before the throne. Some books were opened. And another book was opened–the book of life. The people were judged by what they had done, which is written in the books. The sea gave up the dead who were in it. Death and Hades gave up the dead who were in them. All these people were judged by what they had done. And Death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. This lake of fire is the second death. And anyone whose name was not found written in the book of life was thrown into the lake of fire.
“Daniel, at that time the great prince (angel) Michael will stand up. Michael is in charge of your people. There will be a time of much trouble, the worst time since nations have been on earth. But Daniel, at that time every one of your people whose name is found written in the book of life will be saved. There are many who are dead and buried. Some of them will wake up and live forever, but others will wake up to shame and disgrace forever. The wise people will shine as bright as the sky. Those who teach others to live right will shine like stars forever and ever.”
The person who conquers in this way will wear white clothes, and I will never erase his name from the Book of Life. I will acknowledge his name in the presence of my Father and his angels.
“Listen, I am coming soon! I will bring rewards with me. I will repay everyone for what they have done.
Listen to what Jesus has to say about those who heard the truth of the gospel:
“Listen! A farmer went out to sow seed. While he was scattering the seed, some of it fell by the road. The birds came and ate all that seed. Other seed fell on rocky ground, where there was not enough dirt. It grew quickly there because the soil was not deep. But then the sun rose and the plants were burned. They died because they did not have deep roots. Some other seed fell among thorny weeds. The weeds grew and stopped the good plants from growing. So they did not make grain. But some of the seed fell on good ground. There it began to grow, and it made grain. Some plants made 30 times more grain, some 60 times more, and some 100 times more.” Then Jesus said, “You people who hear me, listen!” Later, Jesus was away from the people. The twelve apostles and his other followers asked him about the stories. Jesus said, “Only you can know the secret truth about God’s kingdom. But to those other people I tell everything by using stories. I do this so that, ‘They will look and look but never really see; they will listen and listen but never understand. If they saw and understood, they might change and be forgiven.’” Then Jesus said to the followers, “Do you understand this story? If you don’t, how will you understand any story? The farmer is like someone who plants God’s teaching in people. Sometimes the teaching falls on the path. That is like some people who hear the teaching of God. As soon as they hear it, Satan comes and takes away the teaching that was planted in them. “Other people are like the seed planted on rocky ground. They hear the teaching, and they quickly and gladly accept it. But they don’t allow it to go deep into their lives. They keep it only a short time. As soon as trouble or persecution comes because of the teaching they accepted, they give up. “Others are like the seed planted among the thorny weeds. They hear the teaching, but their lives become full of other things: the worries of this life, the love of money, and everything else they want. This keeps the teaching from growing, and it does not produce a crop in their lives. “And others are like the seed planted on the good ground. They hear the teaching and accept it. Then they grow and produce a good crop–sometimes 30 times more, sometimes 60 times more, and sometimes 100 times more.”
“Be careful of false prophets. They come to you and look gentle like sheep. But they are really dangerous like wolves. You will know these people because of what they do. Good things don’t come from people who are bad, just as grapes don’t come from thornbushes, and figs don’t come from thorny weeds. In the same way, every good tree produces good fruit, and bad trees produce bad fruit. A good tree cannot produce bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot produce good fruit. Every tree that does not produce good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. You will know these false people by what they do. “Not everyone who calls me Lord will enter God’s kingdom. The only people who will enter are those who do what my Father in heaven wants. On that last Day many will call me Lord. They will say, ‘Lord, Lord, by the power of your name we spoke for God. And by your name we forced out demons and did many miracles.’ Then I will tell those people clearly, ‘Get away from me, you people who do wrong. I never knew you.’ “Whoever hears these teachings of mine and obeys them is like a wise man who built his house on rock. It rained hard, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat against that house. But it did not fall because it was built on rock. “Whoever hears these teachings of mine and does not obey them is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. It rained hard, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat against that house. And it fell with a loud crash.” When Jesus finished speaking, the people were amazed at his teaching. He did not teach like their teachers of the law. He taught like someone who has authority.
“God’s kingdom is like a king who prepared a wedding feast for his son. He invited some people to the feast. When it was ready, the king sent his servants to tell the people to come. But they refused to come to the king’s feast. “Then the king sent some more servants. He said to them, ‘I have already invited the people. So tell them that my feast is ready. I have killed my best bulls and calves to be eaten. Everything is ready. Come to the wedding feast.’ “But when the servants told the people to come, they refused to listen. They all went to do other things. One went to work in his field, and another went to his business. Some of the other people grabbed the servants, beat them, and killed them. The king was very angry. He sent his army to kill those who murdered his servants. And the army burned their city. “After that the king said to his servants, ‘The wedding feast is ready. I invited those people, but they were not good enough to come to my feast. So go to the street corners and invite everyone you see. Tell them to come to my feast.’ So the servants went into the streets. They gathered all the people they could find, good and bad alike, and brought them to where the wedding feast was ready. And the place was filled with guests. “When the king came in to meet the guests, he saw a man there who was not dressed in the right clothes for a wedding. The king said, ‘Friend, how were you allowed to come in here? You are not wearing the right clothes.’ But the man said nothing. So the king told some servants, ‘Tie this man’s hands and feet. Throw him out into the darkness, where people are crying and grinding their teeth with pain.’ “Yes, many people are invited. But only a few are chosen.”
My friends, the call has been made, you know the truth, how will you respond? Eternity is at stake. Will you continue in your sin and find yourself standing before the King of kings speechless only to be cast into hell where there is unimaginable torment forever or will you heed the warnings, repent, forsake your sin and follow Christ faithfully and obediently to the end whereupon you will receive a crown of righteousness and eternal life?
The choice is yours. You are free to choose but you are NOT free from the eternal consequences! Choose wisely!
Then Joshua said to the people, “Now you have heard the Lord’s words. So you must respect the LORD and sincerely serve him. Throw away the false gods that your ancestors worshiped. That was something that happened a long time ago on the other side of the Euphrates River and in Egypt. Now you must serve only the LORD. “But maybe you don’t want to serve the LORD. You must choose for yourselves today. Today you must decide who you will serve. Will you serve the gods that your ancestors worshiped when they lived on the other side of the Euphrates River? Or will you serve the gods of the Amorites who lived in this land? You must choose for yourselves. But as for me and my family, we will serve the LORD.”
In closing, here is a detailed prophecy made by Jesus Christ Himself about the days leading up to His return. Please read this carefully and look around you and see how much of this is happening with ever increasing intensity. Folks, that day is fast approaching!
However, whether that day comes first or you die first, you WILL stand before God and give account for your life. Your eternal destiny will be set by how you responded to this gospel. Choose wisely!
Later, Jesus was sitting at a place on the Mount of Olives. The followers came to be alone with him. They said, “Tell us when these things will happen. And what will happen to prepare us for your coming and the end of time?” Jesus answered, “Be careful! Don’t let anyone fool you. Many people will come and use my name. They will say, ‘I am the Messiah.’ And they will fool many people. You will hear about wars that are being fought. And you will hear stories about other wars beginning. But don’t be afraid. These things must happen before the end comes. Nations will fight against other nations. Kingdoms will fight against other kingdoms. There will be times when there is no food for people to eat. And there will be earthquakes in different places. These things are only the beginning of troubles, like the first pains of a woman giving birth. “Then you will be arrested and handed over to be punished and killed. People all over the world will hate you because you believe in me. During that time many believers will lose their faith. They will turn against each other and hate each other. Many false prophets will come and cause many people to believe things that are wrong. There will so much more evil in the world that the love of most believers will grow cold. But the one who remains faithful to the end will be saved. And the Good News I have shared about God’s kingdom will be told throughout the world. It will be spread to every nation. Then the end will come. “Daniel the prophet spoke about ‘the terrible thing that causes destruction.’ You will see this terrible thing standing in the holy place.” (You who read this should understand what it means.) “The people in Judea at that time should run away to the mountains. They should run away without wasting time to stop for anything. If they are on the roof of their house, they must not go down to get anything out of the house. If they are in the field, they must not go back to get a coat. “During that time it will be hard for women who are pregnant or have small babies! Pray that it will not be winter or a Sabbath day when these things happen and you have to run away, because it will be a time of great trouble. There will be more trouble than has ever happened since the beginning of the world. And nothing as bad as that will ever happen again. “But God has decided to make that terrible time short. If it were not made short, no one would continue living. But God will make that time short to help the people he has chosen. “Someone might say to you at that time, ‘Look, there is the Messiah!’ Or someone else might say, ‘There he is!’ But don’t believe them. False messiahs and false prophets will come and do great miracles and wonders, trying to fool the people God has chosen, if that is possible. Now I have warned you about this before it happens. “Someone might tell you, ‘The Messiah is there in the desert!’ But don’t go into the desert to look for him. Someone else might say, ‘There is the Messiah in that room!’ But don’t believe it. When the Son of Man comes, everyone will see him. It will be like lightning flashing in the sky that can be seen everywhere. It’s like looking for a dead body: You will find it where the vultures are gathering above. “Right after the trouble of those days, this will happen: ‘The sun will become dark, and the moon will not give light. The stars will fall from the sky, and everything in the sky will be changed.’ “Then there will be something in the sky that shows the Son of Man is coming. All the people of the world will cry. Everyone will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds in the sky. He will come with power and great glory. He will use a loud trumpet to send his angels all around the earth. They will gather his chosen people from every part of the earth. “The fig tree teaches us a lesson: When its branches become green and soft, and new leaves begin to grow, then you know that summer is very near. In the same way, when you see all these things happening, you will know that the time is very near, already present. I assure you that all these things will happen while some of the people of this time are still living. The whole world, earth and sky, will be destroyed, but my words will last forever. “No one knows when that day or time will be. The Son and the angels in heaven don’t know when it will be. Only the Father knows. “When the Son of Man comes, it will be the same as what happened during Noah’s time. In those days before the flood, people were eating and drinking, marrying and giving their children to be married right up to the day Noah entered the boat. They knew nothing about what was happening until the flood came and destroyed them all. “It will be the same when the Son of Man comes.”