Love you all, praying for you,
I just love God’s Word. It is truth, completely. It was written to save your life, forever. Have you ever had an “ex.” Maybe an ex-boyfriend, or an ex-girlfriend. Maybe you’re an ex-employee. A company you used to work for you are no longer employed by. Some people living abroad are considered ex-patriots. Whether just living outside of the United States, or maybe they went all the way, and relinquished their citizenship. An ex, something you used to be, but are no longer. Reading something yesterday that puzzled me, and really saddened me… a famous christian singer who now considers themselves by a self-coined term, “ex-christian.” I didn’t know there was such a thing. Almost sounds like an oxy-moron. How do you become an ex-Christian? Perhaps, you never really were one. You were misinformed, you signed the wrong contract. Some people become Christians because they are sold on the benefits in this life. They think it’s a transaction, not a life surrender. They hear about the goodness of God, and they want their life to go better, cause it kinda sucks, their choices or others’ have brought them pain. So they try this new thing that they heard about that will make their life easier. And when it doesn’t go according to plan (their plan) – of what they think God should do to make their life easier… They think it didn’t work, so they look for something else instead, like trading in their old car for a better one. But to become a true Christian, a true believer in Christ, requires something foundational – at the very core of your being. Repentance, with Godly sorrow. If you don’t understand the Holiness of God, how He is perfectly without sin. And if you don’t understand how much sin grieves Him. If you don’t realize that you are forever separated from Him because of your sin - that you were born in! You were a sinner at birth and therefore eternally separate from Him. You need a Savior, and a new birth, so you are born again, not in sin, but in freedom from sin, newness of life, a completely different you. But for this to ever happen you need – someone without sin, to pay the penalty of your sin – death, separation. The only One without sin, isn’t a human being, but God himself. So God sent himself, in the form of His Son Jesus, to take the form of a human, so His sinless life – could take your place, and cover your penalty of death in his own body. If you don’t realize the brutal suffering He went through, not just physical, but in the spirit world, the weight of the sin of the world! You would never be eternally grateful for being saved from hell and outer darkness, the complete separation from God for all of eternity. It will be God-less, nothing good will exist there, only darkness, and torment and suffering. And all of the little evil that you might have experienced from people in your life… that is all that will exist there. Blame, accusation, vengeance, and violence. There is no escape, no light, and no hope, complete separation from God, the Essence and Source of all Good. And apart from Him is just darkness and pure evil. If you don’t grieve because of the stain of your own sin, and you don’t understand what Jesus went through for you, if you don’t really understand what you were saved from… You might think that you tried this – so your life would get better. So you would be saved from the disappointments of life, the hardship or injustice, or the consequence of your own poor choices. But that’s not how it works, and because people don’t get what they expected (an easier life) they look for something else. They blame God for their poor choices that brought pain, or the choices of others that were unjust or unkind. They blame God for sin, and leave Him because of it. That’s the oxymoron, or at least the irony... Leaving life with the One who loves you, for the life of the one who hates you. Paul warned of those who loved the world, loved money, and have left the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows. The false christianity that’s a promise of ease, without the cost of a fully surrendered, forfeited life. That’s not being a Christian, that’s just trying to get a free meal. Jesus said, people will hate you, they hated me, they will hate you. A servant is not above his master. Jesus said, In this world you will have trouble, but be of good courage, (be encouraged!) I have overcome the world. Before Salvation, you are in sin, because you were born in it. Adam’s Fall permanently stained his bloodline. But in Jesus, you are in Christ, no longer part of the bloodline of sin. His blood spilled for you, created a new bloodline, so that you are no longer in sin, but in Christ. You can still sin if you want to, but you don’t have to anymore,. You are no longer controlled by your sin nature, you have a new nature, and new birth, new blood, the blood of Jesus that cleanses us from all sin. You can now choose His Grace to “say no” to sin, and walk in righteousness. So those who consider themselves ex-christian – perhaps didn’t understand the transaction. His life for yours – your life for His, not His life for yours, so your life gets easy. Romans 12:1 – Present your body a living sacrifice, which is (only) reasonable, as your (lifelong) act of worship. He died for you, now your old life dies for Him. People who think being a Christian means everything gets easier in life, so they understandably get disappointed and disillusioned when it doesn’t – never understood the gift of Salvation. They don’t understand the weight of what Jesus did for them, nor their only reasonable response. Full faith, and full surrender. They don’t want to be “In Christ” they just want Christ to be “in them” They don’t want His will and His way for them, His plans which lead to His good. They want Him to do their will, and do it their way, so they get to their plans of what they think is good. If they only knew what was at stake! Eternity in heaven or eternity in hell, forever with God in heaven, or forever removed from Him in the outer darkness and endless torment of hell… They would have Godly sorrow for rejecting God, for sinning against Him, and His Holy Standard of righteousness. They would be grieved to have grieved Him, and they would understand the complete hopelessness of their eternal condition. They need a Savior. And having received the true Christ to come into their heart, and they In Him, they would willingly give up the rest of their life to do whatever He commands, and go wherever He leads, just like the disciples who left their old lives to follow Him. It would be a no-brainer… That’s a permanent change in your heart – that Salvation brings. Your old nature still wants to regain control, but your new nature – if you feed it – will permanently put sin, under your feet. It will stay in the past because you walk in newness of life. If you are saved, and obey the first command of Jesus – wait in Jerusalem until you receive power from on high. The promised Holy Spirit – to lead you into all truth, and give you power to overcome sin, from the old nature that still desires to control you. (Luke 11:13) The only secret to success that remains, is to “walk in the Spirit, and you will not fulfill the desires of the flesh, your old nature. Those ex-christians either never knew what God really did for them, their hopeless state of utter separation from a Loving but Holy God… or they kept their eyes on the world, instead of keeping their eyes on Jesus, and became “hardened by the deceitfulness of sin.” They became like the pig that returned to it’s slop, or the dog that returns to his vomit. God warned of it, the struggle is real. Sin and Death, or Obedience and Life. Praying that you would walk every day in that newness of life! The victory He brings! And the joy that comes with it! Presenting your body a living sacrifice – holy and acceptable unto God which is your reasonable act of worship. To give your life as a living sacrifice, your time, your thoughts, and money must be surrendered fully to Him. Then your words, and actions will follow. You will be fully walking in the new life Jesus came to give you. You will know victory over sin, His complete forgiveness, you’ll know His plans for your Good, and you’ll know His grace that helps you overcome. Your love for Him will grow, and your knowledge of His love for you will grow. Your life will be forever changed, and forever planted and growing in His wonderful plans for you. You will know His mercy and forgiveness, and His help for you in times of trouble. You will overcome the world, because that’s what He did. You won’t ever be an ex-christian, you will be what you now are, an ex-sinner. Now free in Christ from what once bound you. Praying that you would receive Jesus as your Savior – with the complete understanding of what that is. Praying that you would be filled with the Holy Spirit – the power you need to live this new life – so old things are passed away and all things are new! Praying that you would give him full control of your life, Time, Thoughts, and Money – See the Five Steps on the home page of hearwelldone.org – to fully surrender your life to Him, so He can fulfill His purpose for you, and lead you into every good thing that He has for you. It won’t be easy, but it will be eternally worth it! And His Joy will be in you!
Love you all,
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Kelly Kamentz - Jesus follower, husband, father, and friend, helping others surrender time, thoughts, money, and testimony, to fulfill their purpose!