Author Topic: What Must I do to be Saved?  (Read 5574 times)

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Richard Myers

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What Must I do to be Saved?
« on: January 12, 2015, 12:06:22 PM »
The most important question that we must find the answer to is "What must I do to be saved?" We cannot save ourselves, only Christ can do that. We are saved by His grace, not by our works, our efforts, or any good thing we appear to do. But, without our effort, we shall not be saved. Our part in salvation is immeasurably small, God's part is immeasurably large. This puts our part in proper perspective. Now, it is not I that came up with this wisdom, but it is found in Scripture.

The Bible is very clear on what we must do in order to obtain eternal life. We must have Jesus. "And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life." 1 John 5:11, 12.

But, how is it that we may possess Christ? What steps are necessary? This is not a mystery when we are converted and have spiritual eyesight, but to many who are not converted, it remains a mystery. But, the Bible is a lamp unto our feet even when not converted. It points us to Jesus. It also reveals how it is that we find Him. Let us search the Scriptures that we may find the steps necessary to find Christ.

Let me begin with a suggestion that many will find helpful. It would be good to contemplate the life and Words of Jesus Himself when seeking an answer to this question. We look forward to this most important study and to your contribution in answering this important question "What must I do to be saved?" What are the steps to Christ?
Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of His Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.

Mimi

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Re: What Must I do to be Saved?
« Reply #1 on: January 12, 2015, 12:50:45 PM »
 :) Thank you for opening up this tremendous subject. And yes, there are steps to be taken to come to Christ.

I was going to begin along different lines but you have asked the premier question that should be on the lips of millions who are adrift in this world: "Sirs, What must I do to be saved?" Paul and Silas' jailer asked the question. Their perseverance under his extreme cruelty so touched his heart that he wanted what they had - a knowledge of Christ, salvation from sin that only comes through Christ Jesus, the Son of God who is presently making intersession for us in the courts of heaven.

How can we know what to do to gain forgiveness for the wrongs we have committed in our lives? How can we begin to live a moral life that actually in reality becomes holy and acceptable to God and to your fellow man? I am going to share with you a little book inspired by Scripture's road map to this subject, the steps. It is called Steps to Christ and it is exactly that.

Come, study it with us and let us receive rest for our troubled souls, ever looking forward to that blessed day when we shall be with Him who loved us from everlasting.

These are the chapter titles containing the steps.

God's Love for Man

The Sinner's Need of Christ

Repentance

Confession

Consecration

Faith and Acceptance

The Test of Discipleship

Growing up Into Christ

The Work and the Life

A Knowledge of God

The Privilege of Prayer

What to Do With Doubt

Rejoicing in the Lord   

  For ever, O LORD, thy word is settled in heaven. Psalm 119:89 

Mimi

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Re: What Must I do to be Saved?
« Reply #2 on: January 12, 2015, 01:00:25 PM »
As we begin, you will need your Bible. Look up each verse and read it aloud. This little study is awash with Scripture.

Chap. 1 - God's Love for Man

     Nature and revelation alike testify of God's love. Our Father in heaven is the source of life, of wisdom, and of joy. Look at the wonderful and beautiful things of nature. Think of their marvelous adaptation to the needs and happiness, not only of man, but of all living creatures. The sunshine and the rain, that gladden and refresh the earth, the hills and seas and plains, all speak to us of the Creator's love. It is God who supplies the daily needs of all His creatures. In the beautiful words of the psalmist--

     "The eyes of all wait upon Thee;
     And Thou givest them their meat in due season.
     Thou openest Thine hand,
     And satisfiest the desire of every living thing."
                                    Psalm 145:15, 16.   

     God made man perfectly holy and happy; and the fair earth, as it came from the Creator's hand, bore no blight of decay or shadow of the curse. It is transgression of God's law--the law of love--that has brought woe and death. Yet even amid the suffering that results from sin, God's love is revealed. It is written that God cursed the ground for man's sake. Genesis 3:17. The thorn and the thistle--the difficulties and trials that make his life one of toil and care--were appointed for his good as a part of the training needful in God's plan for his uplifting from the ruin and degradation that sin has wrought. The world, though fallen, is not all sorrow and misery. In nature itself are messages of hope and comfort. There are flowers upon the thistles, and the thorns are covered with roses. 

     "God is love" is written upon every opening bud, upon every spire of springing grass. The lovely birds making the air vocal with their happy songs, the delicately tinted flowers in their perfection perfuming the air, the lofty trees of the forest with their rich foliage of living green -- all testify to the tender, fatherly care of our God and to His desire to make His children happy. 
 
     The word of God reveals His character. He Himself has declared His infinite love and pity. When Moses prayed, "Show me Thy glory," the Lord answered, "I will make all My goodness pass before thee." Exodus 33:18, 19. This is His glory. The Lord passed before Moses, and proclaimed, "The Lord, The Lord God, merciful and gracious, long-suffering, and abundant in goodness and truth, keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin." Exodus 34:6, 7. He is "slow to anger, and of great kindness," "because He delighteth in mercy." Jonah 4:2; Micah 7:18. 
 
     God has bound our hearts to Him by unnumbered tokens in heaven and in earth. Through the things of nature, and the deepest and tenderest earthly ties that human hearts can know, He has sought to reveal Himself to us. Yet these but imperfectly represent His love. Though all these evidences have been given, the enemy of good blinded the minds of men, so that they looked upon God with fear; they thought of Him as severe and unforgiving. Satan led men to conceive of God as a being whose chief attribute is stern justice,--one who is a severe judge, a harsh, exacting creditor. He pictured the Creator as a being who is watching with jealous eye to discern the errors and mistakes of men, that He may visit judgments upon them. It was to remove this dark shadow, by revealing to the world the infinite love of God, that Jesus came to live among men. 

     The Son of God came from heaven to make manifest the Father. "No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, He hath declared Him." John 1:18. "Neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal Him." Matthew 11:27. When one of the disciples made the request, "Show us the Father," Jesus answered, "Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known Me, Philip? He that hath seen Me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, Show us the Father?" John 14:8, 9. 
 
     In describing His earthly mission, Jesus said, The Lord "hath anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor; He hath sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised." Luke 4:18. This was His work. He went about doing good and healing all that were oppressed by Satan. There were whole villages where there was not a moan of sickness in any house, for He had passed through them and healed all their sick. His work gave evidence of His divine anointing. Love, mercy, and compassion were revealed in every act of His life; His heart went out in tender sympathy to the children of men. He took man's nature, that He might reach man's wants. The poorest and humblest were not afraid to approach Him. Even little children were attracted to Him. They loved to climb upon His knees and gaze into the pensive face, benignant with love.

     Jesus did not suppress one word of truth, but He uttered it always in love. He exercised the greatest tact and thoughtful, kind attention in His intercourse with the people. He was never rude, never needlessly spoke a severe word, never gave needless pain to a sensitive soul. He did not censure human weakness. He spoke the truth, but always in love. He denounced hypocrisy, unbelief, and iniquity; but tears were in His voice as He uttered His scathing rebukes. He wept over Jerusalem, the city He loved, which refused to receive Him, the way, the truth, and the life. They had rejected Him, the Saviour, but He regarded them with pitying tenderness. His life was one of self-denial and thoughtful care for others. Every soul was precious in His eyes. While He ever bore Himself with divine dignity, He bowed with the tenderest regard to every member of the family of God. In all men He saw fallen souls whom it was His mission to save.
 
     Such is the character of Christ as revealed in His life. This is the character of God. It is from the Father's heart that the streams of divine compassion, manifest in Christ, flow out to the children of men. Jesus, the tender, pitying Saviour, was God "manifest in the flesh." 1 Timothy 3:16.
 
     It was to redeem us that Jesus lived and suffered and died. He became "a Man of Sorrows," that we might be made partakers of everlasting joy. God permitted His beloved Son, full of grace and truth, to come from a world of indescribable glory, to a world marred and blighted with sin, darkened with the shadow of death and the curse. He permitted Him to leave the bosom of His love, the adoration of the angels, to suffer shame, insult, humiliation, hatred, and death. "The chastisement of our peace was upon Him; and with His stripes we are healed." Isaiah 53:5. Behold Him in the wilderness, in Gethsemane, upon the cross! The spotless Son of God took upon Himself the burden of sin. He who had been one with God, felt in His soul the awful separation that sin makes between God and man. This wrung from His lips the anguished cry, "My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken Me?" Matthew 27:46. It was the burden of sin, the sense of its terrible enormity, of its separation of the soul from God--it was this that broke the heart of the Son of God. 
 
     But this great sacrifice was not made in order to create in the Father's heart a love for man, not to make Him willing to save. No, no! "God so loved the world, that He gave His only-begotten Son." John 3:16. The Father loves us, not because of the great propitiation, but He provided the propitiation because He loves us. Christ was the medium through which He could pour out His infinite love upon a fallen world. "God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto Himself." 2 Corinthians 5:19. God suffered with His Son. In the agony of Gethsemane, the death of Calvary, the heart of Infinite Love paid the price of our redemption. 
 
     Jesus said, "Therefore doth My Father love Me, because I lay down My life, that I might take it again." John 10:17. That is, "My Father has so loved you that He even loves Me more for giving My life to redeem you. In becoming your Substitute and Surety, by surrendering My life, by taking your liabilities, your transgressions, I am endeared to My Father; for by My sacrifice, God can be just, and yet the Justifier of him who believeth in Jesus." 
 
     None but the Son of God could accomplish our redemption; for only He who was in the bosom of the Father could declare Him. Only He who knew the height and depth of the love of God could make it manifest. Nothing less than the infinite sacrifice made by Christ in behalf of fallen man could express the Father's love to lost humanity. 
 
     "God so loved the world, that He gave His only-begotten Son." He gave Him not only to live among men, to bear their sins, and die their sacrifice. He gave Him to the fallen race. Christ was to identify Himself with the interests and needs of humanity. He who was one with God has linked Himself with the children of men by ties that are never to be broken. Jesus is "not ashamed to call them brethren" (Hebrews 2:11); He is our Sacrifice, our Advocate, our Brother, bearing our human form before the Father's throne, and through eternal ages one with the race He has redeemed--the Son of man. And all this that man might be uplifted from the ruin and degradation of sin that he might reflect the love of God and share the joy of holiness.
                                                                         
     The price paid for our redemption, the infinite sacrifice of our heavenly Father in giving His Son to die for us, should give us exalted conceptions of what we may become through Christ. As the inspired apostle John beheld the height, the depth, the breadth of the Father's love toward the perishing race, he was filled with adoration and reverence; and, failing to find suitable language in which to express the greatness and tenderness of this love, he called upon the world to behold it. "Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God." 1 John 3:1. What a value this places upon man! Through transgression the sons of man become subjects of Satan. Through faith in the atoning sacrifice of Christ the sons of Adam may become the sons of God. By assuming human nature, Christ elevates humanity. Fallen men are placed where, through connection with Christ, they may indeed become worthy of the name "sons of God." 
 
     Such love is without a parallel. Children of the heavenly King! Precious promise! Theme for the most profound meditation! The matchless love of God for a world that did not love Him! The thought has a subduing power upon the soul and brings the mind into captivity to the will of God. The more we study the divine character in the light of the cross, the more we see mercy, tenderness, and forgiveness blended with equity and justice, and the more clearly we discern innumerable evidences of a love that is infinite and a tender pity surpassing a mother's yearning sympathy for her wayward child. 
  For ever, O LORD, thy word is settled in heaven. Psalm 119:89 

Richard Myers

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Re: What Must I do to be Saved?
« Reply #3 on: January 12, 2015, 02:45:54 PM »
Amen, Mimi!

There is only one place to begin when we seek to understand the plan of salvation, it is with the knowledge of God's love for us while we were yet sinners. It is called grace, the power by which we are not only saved, but transformed into true Christians, saints of the Most High.

Grace is the highest form of love, for it is unmerited. Such love as the grace of God towards us is indeed without parallel. The matchless love of God for a world that did not love Him! The thought has a subduing power upon the soul and brings the mind into captivity to the will of God. Don't skip over this truth. It is the power of grace to change us, to convert us. That is what is meant by "subduing power". When we are truly converted, the mind has been brought into "captivity to the will of God." The carnal mind is captive to sin and Satan, but the converted mind has been surrendered to Jesus and is captive to His will....by choice.

So, here is a step we must take to obtain the Pearl of Great Price. We need to behold the true character of our God. He has been maligned. The more we study the divine character in the light of the cross, the more we see mercy, tenderness, and forgiveness blended with equity and justice, and the more clearly we discern innumerable evidences of a love that is infinite and a tender pity surpassing a mother's yearning sympathy for her wayward child.

It is by beholding this great love that we are changed into the same image from glory unto glory (2 Cor. 3:18). It is both an intellectual and a spiritual truth that by beholding we become changed. The mind gradually adapts itself to the subjects upon which it is allowed to dwell. Thus, our salvation hinges upon a correct understanding of the character of God and then we must maintain a focus upon Him who gave all for us while we were yet sinning.

Jesus said "Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest." Matthew 11:28.  He also said "I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me" (John 12:32). He does not stop with saying "come unto me", he is actively drawing all men unto Himself.  Christ is able to save to the uttermost all who come unto Him. As we continue to study this subject, we shall frequently come back to this first step in coming to Christ.

"Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God." 1 John 3:1. Through faith in the atoning sacrifice of Christ the sons of Adam may become the sons of God. Fallen humanity is placed where, through connection with Christ, we may indeed become worthy of the name "sons of God."

Has anyone experienced this love that keeps one from sinning, that transforms a sinner into a saint?
 
Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of His Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.

Richard Myers

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Re: What Must I do to be Saved?
« Reply #4 on: January 15, 2015, 12:59:40 PM »
He permitted Him to leave the bosom of His love, the adoration of the angels, to suffer shame, insult, humiliation, hatred, and death. "The chastisement of our peace was upon Him; and with His stripes we are healed." Isaiah 53:5. Behold Him in the wilderness, in Gethsemane, upon the cross! The spotless Son of God took upon Himself the burden of sin. He who had been one with God, felt in His soul the awful separation that sin makes between God and man. This wrung from His lips the anguished cry, "My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken Me?" Matthew 27:46. It was the burden of sin, the sense of its terrible enormity, of its separation of the soul from God--it was this that broke the heart of the Son of God.........Such love is without a parallel. Children of the heavenly King! Precious promise! Theme for the most profound meditation! The matchless love of God for a world that did not love Him! The thought has a subduing power upon the soul and brings the mind into captivity to the will of God. The more we study the divine character in the light of the cross, the more we see mercy, tenderness, and forgiveness blended with equity and justice, and the more clearly we discern innumerable evidences of a love that is infinite and a tender pity surpassing a mother's yearning sympathy for her wayward child.

Amen! We are changed by His grace, by His self-sacrificing love for us while we were yet sinners. By His stripes across His back are we healed!
Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of His Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.

Mimi

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Re: What Must I do to be Saved?
« Reply #5 on: January 18, 2015, 06:51:09 AM »
It is an eternal truth, Richard. Can we know the depth of it?

 
Quote
  None but the Son of God could accomplish our redemption; for only He who was in the bosom of the Father could declare Him. Only He who knew the height and depth of the love of God could make it manifest. Nothing less than the infinite sacrifice made by Christ in behalf of fallen man could express the Father's love to lost humanity. 

     "God so loved the world, that He gave His only-begotten Son." He gave Him not only to live among men, to bear their sins, and die their sacrifice. He gave Him to the fallen race. Christ was to identify Himself with the interests and needs of humanity. He who was one with God has linked Himself with the children of men by ties that are never to be broken. Jesus is "not ashamed to call them brethren" (Hebrews 2:11); He is our Sacrifice, our Advocate, our Brother, bearing our human form before the Father's throne, and through eternal ages one with the race He has redeemed--the Son of man. And all this that man might be uplifted from the ruin and degradation of sin that he might reflect the love of God and share the joy of holiness.
                                                                         
     The price paid for our redemption, the infinite sacrifice of our heavenly Father in giving His Son to die for us, should give us exalted conceptions of what we may become through Christ. As the inspired apostle John beheld the height, the depth, the breadth of the Father's love toward the perishing race, he was filled with adoration and reverence; and, failing to find suitable language in which to express the greatness and tenderness of this love, he called upon the world to behold it. "Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God." 1 John 3:1. What a value this places upon man! Through transgression the sons of man become subjects of Satan. Through faith in the atoning sacrifice of Christ the sons of Adam may become the sons of God. By assuming human nature, Christ elevates humanity. Fallen men are placed where, through connection with Christ, they may indeed become worthy of the name "sons of God."
 
     Such love is without a parallel.
  For ever, O LORD, thy word is settled in heaven. Psalm 119:89 

Richard Myers

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Re: What Must I do to be Saved?
« Reply #6 on: January 18, 2015, 08:02:04 AM »
It is an eternal truth, Richard. Can we know the depth of it?

"None but the Son of God could accomplish our redemption; for only He who was in the bosom of the Father could declare Him. Only He who knew the height and depth of the love of God could make it manifest. Nothing less than the infinite sacrifice made by Christ in behalf of fallen man could express the Father's love to lost humanity." 

Amen! Yes, in answer to your question, Mimi.  We may know the depth of God's love for us.  Understanding that Christ condescended to became one with us ought to cause the selfish heart to melt under such self sacrificing love! It is in Jesus that we may know the depth of this great love for us while we were yet sinners. "That He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man; That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height;  And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God." Ephesians 3:16-19.

It is precisely this that is our "work" to be saved. It is by beholding this "grace", the highest form of love that the sinner is transformed into a saint. "But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord." 2 Cor. 3:18.

What is the significance of Jesus taking on our nature, becoming one with humanity?
Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of His Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.

Richard Myers

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Re: What Must I do to be Saved?
« Reply #7 on: January 23, 2015, 07:32:59 AM »
Thinking on the subject of God's love for man, my mind was taken to the chapter where we read about the whipping that Jesus was subjected to, Isaiah 53. The impenitent descendents of those who placed Jesus upon the cross have no answer as to what is being said in this chapter. They do not discern their Messiah in the words written herein. Jesus not only died, but He had to suffer on our account. Hundreds of years before the Messiah was born, Isaiah wrote of His sufferings. Here we read about the object of the symbol that Israel sacrificed for nearly 2,000 years.

 53:1   Who hath believed our report? and to whom is the arm of the LORD revealed? 
 53:2   For he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, [there is] no beauty that we should desire him. 
 53:3   He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were [our] faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not. 
 53:4   Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. 
 53:5   But he [was] wounded for our transgressions, [he was] bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace [was] upon him; and with his stripes we are healed. 
 53:6   All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all. 
 53:7   He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth. 
 53:8   He was taken from prison and from judgment: and who shall declare his generation? for he was cut off out of the land of the living: for the transgression of my people was he stricken. 
 53:9   And he made his grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death; because he had done no violence, neither [was any] deceit in his mouth. 
 53:10   Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put [him] to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see [his] seed, he shall prolong [his] days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand. 
 53:11   He shall see of the travail of his soul, [and] shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities. 
 53:12   Therefore will I divide him [a portion] with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he hath poured out his soul unto death: and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors. 


Amen!! What a God we serve! The loveliness of Jesus, the Lamb that was slain that we might be cleansed and our sins forgiven.





Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of His Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.

Mimi

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Re: What Must I do to be Saved?
« Reply #8 on: March 01, 2015, 06:49:33 AM »
The next step to Christ is to realize our need.




The Sinner's Need of Christ

     Man was originally endowed with noble powers and a well-balanced mind. He was perfect in his being, and in harmony with God. His thoughts were pure, his aims holy. But through disobedience, his powers were perverted, and selfishness took the place of love. His nature became so weakened through transgression that it was impossible for him, in his own strength, to resist the power of evil. He was made captive by Satan, and would have remained so forever had not God specially interposed. It was the tempter's purpose to thwart the divine plan in man's creation, and fill the earth with woe and desolation. And he would point to all this evil as the result of God's work in creating man. 
 
     In his sinless state, man held joyful communion with Him "in whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge." Colossians 2:3. But after his sin, he could no longer find joy in holiness, and he sought to hide from the presence of God. Such is still the condition of the unrenewed heart. It is not in harmony with God, and finds no joy in communion with Him. The sinner could not be happy in God's presence; he would shrink from the companionship of holy beings. Could he be permitted to enter heaven, it would have no joy for him. The spirit of unselfish love that reigns there --every heart responding to the heart of Infinite Love --would touch no answering chord in his soul. His thoughts, his interests, his motives, would be alien to those that actuate the sinless dwellers there. He would be a discordant note in the melody of heaven. Heaven would be to him a place of torture; he would long to be hidden from Him who is its light, and the center of its joy. It is no arbitrary decree on the part of God that excludes the wicked from heaven; they are shut out by their own unfitness for its companionship. The glory of God would be to them a consuming fire. They would welcome destruction, that they might be hidden from the face of Him who died to redeem them. 
 
     It is impossible for us, of ourselves, to escape from the pit of sin in which we are sunken. Our hearts are evil, and we cannot change them. "Who can bring a clean thing out of an unclean? not one." "The carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be." Job 14:4; Romans 8:7. Education, culture, the exercise of the will, human effort, all have their proper sphere, but here they are powerless. They may produce an outward correctness of behavior, but they cannot change the heart; they cannot purify the springs of life. There must be a power working from within, a new life from above, before men can be changed from sin to holiness. That power is Christ. His grace alone can quicken the lifeless faculties of the soul, and attract it to God, to holiness. 
 
     The Saviour said, "Except a man be born from above," unless he shall receive a new heart, new desires, purposes, and motives, leading to a new life, "he cannot see the kingdom of God." John 3:3, margin. The idea that it is necessary only to develop the good that exists in man by nature, is a fatal deception. "The natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned." "Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again." 1 Corinthians 2:14; 3:7. Of Christ it is written, "In Him was life; and the life was the light of men"--the only "name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved." John 1:4; Acts 4:12. 
 
     It is not enough to perceive the loving-kindness of God, to see the benevolence, the fatherly tenderness, of His character. It is not enough to discern the wisdom and justice of His law, to see that it is founded upon the eternal principle of love. Paul the apostle saw all this when he exclaimed, "I consent unto the law that it is good." "The law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good." But he added, in the bitterness of his soul-anguish and despair, "I am carnal, sold under sin." Romans 7:16, 12, 14. He longed for the purity, the righteousness, to which in himself he was powerless to attain, and cried out, "O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from this body of death?" Romans 7:24, margin. Such is the cry that has gone up from burdened hearts in all lands and in all ages. To all, there is but one answer, "Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world." John 1:29. 
 
     Many are the figures by which the Spirit of God has sought to illustrate this truth, and make it plain to souls that long to be freed from the burden of guilt. When, after his sin in deceiving Esau, Jacob fled from his father's home, he was weighed down with a sense of guilt. Lonely and outcast as he was, separated from all that had made life dear, the one thought that above all others pressed upon his soul, was the fear that his sin had cut him off from God, that he was forsaken of Heaven. In sadness he lay down to rest on the bare earth, around him only the lonely hills, and above, the heavens bright with stars. As he slept, a strange light broke upon his vision; and lo, from the plain on which he lay, vast shadowy stairs seemed to lead upward to the very gates of heaven, and upon them angels of God were passing up and down; while from the glory above, the divine voice was heard in a message of comfort and hope. Thus was made known to Jacob that which met the need and longing of his soul--a Saviour. With joy and gratitude he saw revealed a way by which he, a sinner, could be restored to communion with God. The mystic ladder of his dream represented Jesus, the only medium of communication between God and man. 
 
     This is the same figure to which Christ referred in His conversation with Nathanael, when He said, "Ye shall see heaven open, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of man." John 1:51. In the apostasy, man alienated himself from God; earth was cut off from heaven. Across the gulf that lay between, there could be no communion. But through Christ, earth is again linked with heaven. With His own merits, Christ has bridged the gulf which sin had made, so that the ministering angels can hold communion with man. Christ connects fallen man in his weakness and helplessness with the Source of infinite power.
 
     But in vain are men's dreams of progress, in vain all efforts for the uplifting of humanity, if they neglect the one Source of hope and help for the fallen race. "Every good gift and every perfect gift" (James 1:17) is from God. There is no true excellence of character apart from Him. And the only way to God is Christ. He says, "I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by Me." John 14:6. 
 
     The heart of God yearns over His earthly children with a love stronger than death. In giving up His Son, He has poured out to us all heaven in one gift. The Saviour's life and death and intercession, the ministry of angels, the pleading of the Spirit, the Father working above and through all, the unceasing interest of heavenly beings,--all are enlisted in behalf of man's redemption. 
 
     Oh, let us contemplate the amazing sacrifice that has been made for us! Let us try to appreciate the labor and energy that Heaven is expending to reclaim the lost, and bring them back to the Father's house. Motives stronger, and agencies more powerful, could never be brought into operation; the exceeding rewards for right-doing, the enjoyment of heaven, the society of the angels, the communion and love of God and His Son, the elevation and extension of all our powers throughout eternal ages--are these not mighty incentives and encouragements to urge us to give the heart's loving service to our Creator and Redeemer? 
 
     And, on the other hand, the judgments of God pronounced against sin, the inevitable retribution, the degradation of our character, and the final destruction, are presented in God's word to warn us against the service of Satan. 
 
     Shall we not regard the mercy of God? What more could He do? Let us place ourselves in right relation to Him who has loved us with amazing love. Let us avail ourselves of the means provided for us that we may be transformed into His likeness, and be restored to fellowship with the ministering angels, to harmony and communion with the Father and the Son. 

 
  For ever, O LORD, thy word is settled in heaven. Psalm 119:89 

Mimi

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Re: What Must I do to be Saved?
« Reply #9 on: March 03, 2015, 05:45:52 AM »
The death of a child. The death of a parent or spouse. The loss of a job. A cataclysmic event that causes the loss of everything we own.

The reasons for turning our eyes toward God can be as varied as we are as individuals. Sometimes the need begins gradually, almost imperceptibly, and intellectual curiosity is aroused. But at other times, it can come on suddenly. The heart is aching and desperate for answers to give us hope in the moment of despair. Suddenly, the heart (mind) is open and ready for anything that can bring us peace. The important thing is whatever the cause, we finally realize our need of Him. In the book of Matthew, He speaks directly to us these beautiful words:

Mat 11:28-30  Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.

Study this little chapter. Open your Bible to discover how deeply God wants you to find peace, lasting and joyful peace in Him.   
  For ever, O LORD, thy word is settled in heaven. Psalm 119:89 

Richard Myers

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Re: What Must I do to be Saved?
« Reply #10 on: March 03, 2015, 08:42:40 AM »
Amen. Reading of God's love is the first step in being converted. We need to do it daily.
Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of His Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.

Mimi

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Re: What Must I do to be Saved?
« Reply #11 on: March 10, 2015, 12:37:24 PM »
Before I became a Christian, I really knew little of the Bible even though "religion" was a regular part of my life until the teenage years. My grandfather loved and trusted Him but by the time my interest was aroused and my need of God crystal clear, my dear grandfather had been sleeping in the grave for almost twenty years. So it would be up to me to discover these things on my own. Grandfather left me his Bible and religious books, so secretly I began to devour them.

Within those pages are the stories of God's love for us through the ages. It touched me like nothing else. Instantly I wanted to know Him and trust Him with my life. It grieved me that it had taken so many years to come to the realization that He had loved me all along, even while I was ignoring Him.

It brought me to my knees. I needed Him because my life, although full with many things that meant little (in the big scheme of things), was as empty and hopeless as could be. Eternal life with eternal joy, peace and untold happiness with a Savior who died for the likes of me was exactly what I wanted. Exactly what I needed.  :)

A drug addict will never consider becoming clean until they realize their need. Neither will an alcoholic, and neither will a sinner who not only sins against themselves, but against a God-man who literally was nailed to a cross to die for them.     
  For ever, O LORD, thy word is settled in heaven. Psalm 119:89 

Mimi

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Re: What Must I do to be Saved?
« Reply #12 on: March 15, 2015, 09:54:28 AM »
The next step is repentance of sin.




Repentance


How shall a man be just with God? How shall the sinner be made righteous? It is only through Christ that we can be brought into harmony with God, with holiness; but how are we to come to Christ? Many are asking the same question as did the multitude on the Day of Pentecost, when, convicted of sin, they cried out, "What shall we do?" The first word of Peter's answer was, "Repent." Acts 2:37, 38. At another time, shortly after, he said, "Repent, . . . and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out." Acts 3:19.

Repentance includes sorrow for sin and a turning away from it. We shall not renounce sin unless we see its sinfulness; until we turn away from it in heart, there will be no real change in the life.

There are many who fail to understand the true nature of repentance. Multitudes sorrow that they have sinned and even make an outward reformation because they fear that their wrongdoing will bring suffering upon themselves. But this is not repentance in the Bible sense. They lament the suffering rather than the sin. Such was the grief of Esau when he saw that the birthright was lost to him forever. Balaam, terrified by the angel standing in his pathway with drawn sword, acknowledged his guilt lest he should lose his life; but there was no genuine repentance for sin, no conversion of purpose, no abhorrence of evil. Judas Iscariot, after betraying his Lord, exclaimed, "I have sinned in that I have betrayed the innocent blood." Matthew 27:4.

The confession was forced from his guilty soul by an awful sense of condemnation and a fearful looking for of judgment. The consequences that were to result to him filled him with terror, but there was no deep, heartbreaking grief in his soul, that he had betrayed the spotless Son of God and denied the Holy One of Israel. Pharaoh, when suffering under the judgments of God, acknowledged his sin in order to escape further punishment, but returned to his defiance of Heaven as soon as the plagues were stayed. These all lamented the results of sin, but did not sorrow for the sin itself.

But when the heart yields to the influence of the Spirit of God, the conscience will be quickened, and the sinner will discern something of the depth and sacredness of God's holy law, the foundation of His government in heaven and on earth. The "Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world," illumines the secret chambers of the soul, and the hidden things of darkness are made manifest. John 1:9. Conviction takes hold upon the mind and heart. The sinner has a sense of the righteousness of Jehovah and feels the terror of appearing, in his own guilt and uncleanness, before the Searcher of hearts. He sees the love of God, the beauty of holiness, the joy of purity; he longs to be cleansed and to be restored to communion with Heaven.

The prayer of David after his fall, illustrates the nature of true sorrow for sin. His repentance was sincere and deep. There was no effort to palliate his guilt; no desire to escape the judgment threatened, inspired his prayer. David saw the enormity of his transgression; he saw the defilement of his soul; he loathed his sin. It was not for pardon only that he prayed, but for purity of heart. He longed for the joy of holiness--to be restored to harmony and communion with God. This was the language of his soul:

"Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven,

whose sin is covered.

Blessed is the man unto whom the Lord

imputeth not iniquity,

And in whose spirit there is no guile."

Psalm 32:1, 2.



"Have mercy upon me, O God, according to

Thy loving-kindness:

According unto the multitude of Thy tender

mercies blot out my transgressions. . . .

For I acknowledge my transgressions: and my

sin is ever before me. . . .

Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean:

wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow. . . .

Create in me a clean heart, O God;

And renew a right spirit within me.

Cast me not away from Thy presence;

And take not Thy Holy Spirit from me.

Restore unto me the joy of Thy salvation;

And uphold me with Thy free spirit. . . .

Deliver me from bloodguiltiness, O God, Thou

God of my salvation:

And my tongue shall sing aloud of Thy

righteousness." Psalm 51:1-14.


A repentance such as this, is beyond the reach of our own power to accomplish; it is obtained only from Christ, who ascended up on high and has given gifts unto men.

Just here is a point on which many may err, and hence they fail of receiving the help that Christ desires to give them. They think that they cannot come to Christ unless they first repent, and that repentance prepares for the forgiveness of their sins. It is true that repentance does precede the forgiveness of sins; for it is only the broken and contrite heart that will feel the need of a Saviour. But must the sinner wait till he has repented before he can come to Jesus? Is repentance to be made an obstacle between the sinner and the Saviour?

The Bible does not teach that the sinner must repent before he can heed the invitation of Christ, "Come unto Me, all ye that labor and are heavy-laden, and I will give you rest." Matthew 11:28. It is the virtue that goes forth from Christ, that leads to genuine repentance. Peter made the matter clear in his statement to the Israelites when he said, "Him hath God exalted with His right hand to be a Prince and a Saviour, for to give repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins." Acts 5:31. We can no more repent without the Spirit of Christ to awaken the conscience than we can be pardoned without Christ.

Christ is the source of every right impulse. He is the only one that can implant in the heart enmity against sin. Every desire for truth and purity, every conviction of our own sinfulness, is an evidence that His Spirit is moving upon our hearts.

Jesus has said, "I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto Me." John 12:32. Christ must be revealed to the sinner as the Saviour dying for the sins of the world; and as we behold the Lamb of God upon the cross of Calvary, the mystery of redemption begins to unfold to our minds and the goodness of God leads us to repentance. In dying for sinners, Christ manifested a love that is incomprehensible; and as the sinner beholds this love, it softens the heart, impresses the mind, and inspires contrition in the soul.

It is true that men sometimes become ashamed of their sinful ways, and give up some of their evil habits, before they are conscious that they are being drawn to Christ. But whenever they make an effort to reform, from a sincere desire to do right, it is the power of Christ that is drawing them. An influence of which they are unconscious works upon the soul, and the conscience is quickened, and the outward life is amended. And as Christ draws them to look upon His cross, to behold Him whom their sins have pierced, the commandment comes home to the conscience. The wickedness of their life, the deep-seated sin of the soul, is revealed to them. They begin to comprehend something of the righteousness of Christ, and exclaim, "What is sin, that it should require such a sacrifice for the redemption of its victim? Was all this love, all this suffering, all this humiliation, demanded, that we might not perish, but have everlasting life?"

The sinner may resist this love, may refuse to be drawn to Christ; but if he does not resist he will be drawn to Jesus; a knowledge of the plan of salvation will lead him to the foot of the cross in repentance for his sins, which have caused the sufferings of God's dear Son.

The same divine mind that is working upon the things of nature is speaking to the hearts of men and creating an inexpressible craving for something they have not. The things of the world cannot satisfy their longing. The Spirit of God is pleading with them to seek for those things that alone can give peace and rest--the grace of Christ, the joy of holiness. Through influences seen and unseen, our Saviour is constantly at work to attract the minds of men from the unsatisfying pleasures of sin to the infinite blessings that may be theirs in Him. To all these souls, who are vainly seeking to drink from the broken cisterns of this world, the divine message is addressed, "Let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely." Revelation 22:17.

You who in heart long for something better than this world can give, recognize this longing as the voice of God to your soul. Ask Him to give you repentance, to reveal Christ to you in His infinite love, in His perfect purity. In the Saviour's life the principles of God's law--love to God and man--were perfectly exemplified. Benevolence, unselfish love, was the life of His soul. It is as we behold Him, as the light from our Saviour falls upon us, that we see the sinfulness of our own hearts.

We may have flattered ourselves, as did Nicodemus, that our life has been upright, that our moral character is correct, and think that we need not humble the heart before God, like the common sinner: but when the light from Christ shines into our souls, we shall see how impure we are; we shall discern the selfishness of motive, the enmity against God, that has defiled every act of life. Then we shall know that our own righteousness is indeed as filthy rags, and that the blood of Christ alone can cleanse us from the defilement of sin, and renew our hearts in His own likeness.

One ray of the glory of God, one gleam of the purity of Christ, penetrating the soul, makes every spot of defilement painfully distinct, and lays bare the deformity and defects of the human character. It makes apparent the unhallowed desires, the infidelity of the heart, the impurity of the lips. The sinner's acts of disloyalty in making void the law of God, are exposed to his sight, and his spirit is stricken and afflicted under the searching influence of the Spirit of God. He loathes himself as he views the pure, spotless character of Christ.

When the prophet Daniel beheld the glory surrounding the heavenly messenger that was sent unto him, he was overwhelmed with a sense of his own weakness and imperfection. Describing the effect of the wonderful scene, he says, "There remained no strength in me: for my comeliness was turned in me into corruption, and I retained no strength." Daniel 10:8. The soul thus touched will hate its selfishness, abhor its self-love, and will seek, through Christ's righteousness, for the purity of heart that is in harmony with the law of God and the character of Christ.

Paul says that as "touching the righteousness which is in the law"--as far as outward acts were concerned --he was "blameless" (Philippians 3:6); but when the spiritual character of the law was discerned, he saw himself a sinner. Judged by the letter of the law as men apply it to the outward life, he had abstained from sin; but when he looked into the depths of its holy precepts, and saw himself as God saw him, he bowed in humiliation and confessed his guilt. He says, "I was alive without the law once: but when the commandment came, sin revived, and I died." Romans 7:9. When he saw the spiritual nature of the law, sin appeared in its true hideousness, and his self-esteem was gone.

God does not regard all sins as of equal magnitude; there are degrees of guilt in His estimation, as well as in that of man; but however trifling this or that wrong act may seem in the eyes of men, no sin is small in the sight of God. Man's judgment is partial, imperfect; but God estimates all things as they really are. The drunkard is despised and is told that his sin will exclude him from heaven; while pride, selfishness, and covetousness too often go unrebuked. But these are sins that are especially offensive to God; for they are contrary to the benevolence of His character, to that unselfish love which is the very atmosphere of the uncalled universe. He who falls into some of the grosser sins may feel a sense of his shame and poverty and his need of the grace of Christ; but pride feels no need, and so it closes the heart against Christ and the infinite blessings He came to give.

The poor publican who prayed, "God be merciful to me a sinner" (Luke 18:13), regarded himself as a very wicked man, and others looked upon him in the same light; but he felt his need, and with his burden of guilt and shame he came before God, asking for His mercy. His heart was open for the Spirit of God to do its gracious work and set him free from the power of sin. The Pharisee's boastful, self-righteous prayer showed that his heart was closed against the influence of the Holy Spirit. Because of his distance from God, he had no sense of his own defilement, in contrast with the perfection of the divine holiness. He felt no need, and he received nothing.

If you see your sinfulness, do not wait to make yourself better. How many there are who think they are not good enough to come to Christ. Do you expect to become better through your own efforts? "Can the Ethiopian change his skin, or the leopard his spots? then may ye also do good, that are accustomed to do evil." Jeremiah 13:23. There is help for us only in God. We must not wait for stronger persuasions, for better opportunities, or for holier tempers. We can do nothing of ourselves. We must come to Christ just as we are.

But let none deceive themselves with the thought that God, in His great love and mercy, will yet save even the rejecters of His grace. The exceeding sinfulness of sin can be estimated only in the light of the cross. When men urge that God is too good to cast off the sinner, let them look to Calvary. It was because there was no other way in which man could be saved, because without this sacrifice it was impossible for the human race to escape from the defiling power of sin, and be restored to communion with holy beings,--impossible for them again to become partakers of spiritual life,--it was because of this that Christ took upon Himself the guilt of the disobedient and suffered in the sinner's stead. The love and suffering and death of the Son of God all testify to the terrible enormity of sin and declare that there is no escape from its power, no hope of the higher life, but through the submission of the soul to Christ.

The impenitent sometimes excuse themselves by saying of professed Christians, "I am as good as they are. They are no more self-denying, sober, or circumspect in their conduct than I am. They love pleasure and self-indulgence as well as I do." Thus they make the faults of others an excuse for their own neglect of duty. But the sins and defects of others do not excuse anyone, for the Lord has not given us an erring human pattern. The spotless Son of God has been given as our example, and those who complain of the wrong course of professed Christians are the ones who should show better lives and nobler examples. If they have so high a conception of what a Christian should be, is not their own sin so much the greater? They know what is right, and yet refuse to do it.

Beware of procrastination. Do not put off the work of forsaking your sins and seeking purity of heart through Jesus. Here is where thousands upon thousands have erred to their eternal loss. I will not here dwell upon the shortness and uncertainty of life; but there is a terrible danger--a danger not sufficiently understood--in delaying to yield to the pleading voice of God's Holy Spirit, in choosing to live in sin; for such this delay really is. Sin, however small it may be esteemed, can be indulged in only at the peril of infinite loss. What we do not overcome, will overcome us and work out our destruction.

Adam and Eve persuaded themselves that in so small a matter as eating of the forbidden fruit there could not result such terrible consequences as God had declared. But this small matter was the transgression of God's immutable and holy law, and it separated man from God and opened the floodgates of death and untold woe upon our world. Age after age there has gone up from our earth a continual cry of mourning, and the whole creation groaneth and travaileth together in pain as a consequence of man's disobedience. Heaven itself has felt the effects of his rebellion against God. Calvary stands as a memorial of the amazing sacrifice required to atone for the transgression of the divine law. Let us not regard sin as a trivial thing.

Every act of transgression, every neglect or rejection of the grace of Christ, is reacting upon yourself; it is hardening the heart, depraving the will, benumbing the understanding, and not only making you less inclined to yield, but less capable of yielding, to the tender pleading of God's Holy Spirit.

Many are quieting a troubled conscience with the thought that they can change a course of evil when they choose; that they can trifle with the invitations of mercy, and yet be again and again impressed. They think that after doing despite to the Spirit of grace, after casting their influence on the side of Satan, in a moment of terrible extremity they can change their course. But this is not so easily done. The experience, the education, of a lifetime, has so thoroughly molded the character that few then desire to receive the image of Jesus.

Even one wrong trait of character, one sinful desire, persistently cherished, will eventually neutralize all the power of the gospel. Every sinful indulgence strengthens the soul's aversion to God. The man who manifests an infidel hardihood, or a stolid indifference to divine truth, is but reaping the harvest of that which he has himself sown. In all the Bible there is not a more fearful warning against trifling with evil than the words of the wise man that the sinner "shall be holden with the cords of his sins." Proverbs 5:22.

Christ is ready to set us free from sin, but He does not force the will; and if by persistent transgression the will itself is wholly bent on evil, and we do not desire to be set free, if we will not accept His grace, what more can He do? We have destroyed ourselves by our determined rejection of His love. "Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation." "Today if ye will hear His voice, harden not your hearts." 2 Corinthians 6:2; Hebrews 3:7, 8.

"Man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart"--the human heart, with its conflicting emotions of joy and sorrow; the wandering, wayward heart, which is the abode of so much impurity and deceit. 1 Samuel 16:7. He knows its motives, its very intents and purposes. Go to Him with your soul all stained as it is. Like the psalmist, throw its chambers open to the all-seeing eye, exclaiming, "Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: and see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting." Psalm 139: 23, 24.

Many accept an intellectual religion, a form of godliness, when the heart is not cleansed. Let it be your prayer, "Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me." Psalm 51:10. Deal truly with your own soul. Be as earnest, as persistent, as you would be if your mortal life were at stake. This is a matter to be settled between God and your own soul, settled for eternity. A supposed hope, and nothing more, will prove your ruin.

Study God's word prayerfully. That word presents before you, in the law of God and the life of Christ, the great principles of holiness, without which "no man shall see the Lord." Hebrews 12:14. It convinces of sin; it plainly reveals the way of salvation. Give heed to it as the voice of God speaking to your soul.

As you see the enormity of sin, as you see yourself as you really are, do not give up to despair. It was sinners that Christ came to save. We have not to reconcile God to us, but--O wondrous love!--God in Christ is "reconciling the world unto Himself." 2 Corinthians 5:19. He is wooing by His tender love the hearts of His erring children. No earthly parent could be as patient with the faults and mistakes of his children, as is God with those He seeks to save. No one could plead more tenderly with the transgressor. No human lips ever poured out more tender entreaties to the wanderer than does He. All His promises, His warnings, are but the breathing of unutterable love.

When Satan comes to tell you that you are a great sinner, look up to your Redeemer and talk of His merits. That which will help you is to look to His light. Acknowledge your sin, but tell the enemy that "Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners" and that you may be saved by His matchless love. 1 Timothy 1:15. Jesus asked Simon a question in regard to two debtors. One owed his lord a small sum, and the other owed him a very large sum; but he forgave them both, and Christ asked Simon which debtor would love his lord most. Simon answered, "He to whom he forgave most." Luke 7:43. We have been great sinners, but Christ died that we might be forgiven. The merits of His sacrifice are sufficient to present to the Father in our behalf. Those to whom He has forgiven most will love Him most, and will stand nearest to His throne to praise Him for His great love and infinite sacrifice. It is when we most fully comprehend the love of God that we best realize the sinfulness of sin. When we see the length of the chain that was let down for us, when we understand something of the infinite sacrifice that Christ has made in our behalf, the heart is melted with tenderness and contrition.
  For ever, O LORD, thy word is settled in heaven. Psalm 119:89 

Richard Myers

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Re: What Must I do to be Saved?
« Reply #13 on: August 06, 2015, 07:12:32 AM »
Many in God's church are not converted, they remain in a Laodicean state which is an unconverted and lost condition. Jesus tells us directly what to do. He says "As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent." Rev. 3:19. When we discover our nakedness, and that sin reveals a separation between us and God, then we turn to find an answer to our undone dilemma. As Paul explained in Romans seven, we cannot cleanse ourselves of our sin, it is in the flesh. What must we do in order to overcome sin? "O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?" Romans 7:24. The Bible does not leave us in this state of confusion, but explicitly reveals to us our path. Jesus tells us to "repent", how do I repent, I don't have it in me to repent of something my flesh enjoys. Who will deliver me from myself?

The answer comes in the following verse. "I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord" I can come to repentance and walk after the Spirit rather than walking in my flesh. Romans  7:25. Does the Bible make plain how it is that we can get this repentance, is there anything I can do to get it? Yes, there is something we must do in order to get repentance. It comes from God, yet all do not receive it. Why not? Because they leave undone that which we are told to do. Jesus says "Come unto me".  Matthew 11:28. If we continue to resist His drawing and do not come to Jesus, we shall not receive repentance and shall not be saved. He is the Bread of Life that we must feed upon to receive repentance and thus life. We must behold His love in order to be changed into His image, to be made partakers of His divine nature, to be saved on a daily basis. We are not saved one time forever. We must die to self each day, moment by moment.

When we behold Jesus and His goodness, we are changed from the inside out. The heart is cleansed, it is renewed in the likeness of our God. How do we get repentance? "The goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance." Romans 2:4.  We see in Scripture that if we will behold His goodness, we shall be given repentance. We must see His great love, His sacrifice, His grace, then we shall sorrow over our sins that put Him on the cross. It is "godly sorrow that gives us repentance for our sins. "For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation." 2 Cor. 7:10.

We read in the last post that "you may be saved by His matchless love". Amen! It is by beholding His matchless love that we are brought to repentance and our hearts are cleansed of selfishness. It would be well for us to spend a thoughtful hour each day beholding the life of Christ. By beholding His matchless love we shall repent of our sins and be transformed in character, cleansed from the inside out.
Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of His Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.

colporteur

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Re: What Must I do to be Saved?
« Reply #14 on: December 31, 2015, 11:06:51 AM »
 How would you reconcile what might appear on the surface as a contradiction between these two quotes ?

  God's People Cherish No Sinful Desires

     Now, while our great High Priest is making the atonement for us, we should seek to become perfect in Christ. Not even by a thought could our Saviour be brought to yield to the power of temptation. Satan finds in human hearts some point where he can gain a foothold; some sinful desire is cherished, by means of which his temptations assert their power. But Christ declared of Himself: "The prince of this world cometh, and hath nothing in Me." (John 14:30). Satan could find nothing in the Son of God that would enable him to gain the victory. He had kept His Father's commandments, and there was no sin in Him that Satan could use to his advantage. This is the condition in which those must be found who shall stand in the time of trouble.--GC 623 (1911).  {LDE 267.2}

     Sanctification is not the work of a moment, an hour, a day, but of a lifetime. It is not gained by a happy flight of feeling, but is the result of constantly dying to sin, and constantly living for Christ. Wrongs cannot be righted nor reformations wrought in the character by feeble, intermittent efforts. It is only by long, persevering effort, sore discipline, and stern conflict, that we shall overcome. We know not one day how strong will be our conflict the next. So long as Satan reigns, we shall have self to subdue, besetting sins to overcome; so long as life shall last, there will be no stopping place, no point which we can reach and say, I have fully attained. Sanctification is the result of lifelong obedience.  {AA 560.3}
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Richard Myers

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Re: What Must I do to be Saved?
« Reply #15 on: December 31, 2015, 01:30:07 PM »
Good question cp. They certainly do not contradict each other. I see the answer in the second quote. Let's see if one of our  Bible scholars has an answer. Maybe since it is New Years Day in America tomorrow, some may have time to answer.
Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of His Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.

Ed Sutton

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Re: What Must I do to be Saved?
« Reply #16 on: December 31, 2015, 07:07:25 PM »
Pre Blotting Out of Sins Time Believers response - "I don't do that anymore"

Satan's Response - "Ah but you used to, maybe you would like to return to it see how nice it was"

Believers Response - "Not my will, not my mind, but God's will be done, not my mind but Christ's mind rule and  reign in me in every particular ."

Post blotting out / sealing - believers can not bring old sins to mind anymore.

SOP search "not saved until" = 2 hits

Quote
How few bear in mind that the tempter was once a covering cherub, a being whom God created for His own name's glory. Satan fell from his high position through self-exaltation; he misused the high capabilities with which God had so richly endowed him. He fell for the same reason that thousands are falling today, because of an ambition to be first, an unwillingness to be under restraint. The Lord would teach man the lesson that, though united in church capacity, he is not saved until the seal of God is placed upon him. . . .  {7BC 969.3} 

Sometimes the ... leaves out something important - in this case it does.

Quote
   How few bear in mind that the tempter was once a covering cherub, a being whom God created for His own name's glory. Satan fell from his high position through self-exaltation; he misused the high capabilities with which God had so richly endowed him. He fell for the same reason that thousands are falling today, because of an ambition to be first, an unwillingness to be under restraint. The Lord would teach man the lesson that, though united in church capacity, he is not saved until the seal of God is placed upon him, and he is made complete in Christ.  {11MR 367.2}   

part - 1     http://www.sdadefend.com/Defend-foundation/righteoua.htm 

part - 2     http://www.sdadefend.com/Defend-foundation/righteoub.htm
Grateful for Psalms 32 and Titus 2:10 - The divinity of Christ is acknowledged in the unity of the children of God.  {11MR 266.2}

Ed Sutton

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Re: What Must I do to be Saved?
« Reply #17 on: January 01, 2016, 02:13:38 PM »
Is it possible the seal of God is our cord in the dream of the loaded wagons ?

These quotes make me think .

Quote
Christ desires nothing so much as to redeem His heritage from the dominion of Satan. But before we are delivered from Satan's power without, we must be delivered from his power within. The Lord permits trials in order that we may be cleansed from earthliness, from selfishness, from harsh, unchristlike traits of character. He suffers the deep waters of affliction to go over our souls in order that we may know Him and Jesus Christ whom He has sent, in order that we may have deep heart longings to be cleansed from defilement, and may come forth from the trial purer, holier, happier. Often we enter the furnace of trial with our souls darkened with selfishness; but if patient under the crucial test, we shall come forth reflecting the divine character. When His purpose in the affliction is accomplished, "He shall bring forth thy righteousness as the light, and thy judgment as the noonday." Psalm 37:6.  {COL 174.3}

     There is no danger that the Lord will neglect the prayers of His people. The danger is that in temptation and trial they will become discouraged, and fail to persevere in prayer. {COL 175.1} 

     The Saviour manifested divine compassion toward the Syrophenician woman. His heart was touched as He saw her grief. He longed to give her an immediate assurance that her prayer was heard; but He desired to teach His disciples a lesson, and for a time He seemed to neglect the cry of her tortured heart. When her faith had been made manifest, He spoke to her words of commendation and sent her away with the precious boon she had asked. The disciples never forgot this lesson, and it is placed on record to show the result of persevering prayer.  {COL 175.2} 

     It was Christ Himself who put into that mother's heart the persistence which would not be repulsed. It was Christ who gave the pleading widow courage and determination before the judge. It was Christ who, centuries before, in the mysterious conflict by the Jabbok, had inspired Jacob with the same persevering faith. And the confidence which He Himself had implanted, He did not fail to reward. {COL 175.3} 

     He who dwells in the heavenly sanctuary judges righteously. His pleasure is more in His people, struggling with temptation in a world of sin, than in the host of angels that surround His throne.  {COL 176.1} 

     In this speck of a world the whole heavenly universe manifests the greatest interest, for Christ has paid an infinite price for the souls of its inhabitants. The world's Redeemer has bound earth to heaven by ties of intelligence, for the redeemed of the Lord are here. Heavenly beings still visit the earth as in the days when they walked and talked with Abraham and with Moses. Amid the busy activity of our great cities, amid the multitudes that crowd the thoroughfares and fill the marts of trade where from morning till evening the people act as if business and sport and pleasure were all there is to life, where there are so few to contemplate unseen realities--even here heaven has still its watchers and its holy ones. There are invisible agencies observing every word and deed of human beings. In every assembly for business or pleasure, in every gathering for worship, there are more listeners than can be seen with the natural sight. Sometimes the heavenly intelligences draw aside the curtain which hides the unseen world that our thoughts may be withdrawn from the hurry and rush of life to consider that there are unseen witnesses to all we do or say.  {COL 176.2} 

     We need to understand better than we do the mission of the angel visitants. It would be well to consider that in all our work we have the co-operation and care of heavenly beings. Invisible armies of light and power attend the meek and lowly ones who believe and claim the promises of God. Cherubim and seraphim and angels that excel in strength--ten thousand times ten thousand and thousands of thousands--stand at His right hand, "all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation." Hebrews 1:14. {COL 176.3}

     By these angel messengers a faithful record is kept of the words and deeds of the children of men. Every act of cruelty or injustice toward God's people, all they are caused to suffer through the power of evil workers, is registered in heaven.  {COL 177.1} 

     "Shall not God avenge His own elect, which cry day and night unto Him, though He bear long with them? I tell you that He will avenge them speedily."  {COL 177.2} 

     "Cast not away therefore your confidence, which hath great recompense of reward. For ye have need of patience, that, after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise. For yet a little while, and He that shall come will come, and will not tarry." Hebrews 10:35-37. "Behold, the husbandman waiteth for the precious fruit of the earth, and hath long patience for it, until he receive the early and latter rain. Be ye also patient; stablish your hearts; for the coming of the Lord draweth nigh." James 5:7, 8.  {COL 177.3} 

......................
The sealing is a pledge from God of perfect security to His chosen ones. Sealing indicates you are Godís chosen. He has appropriated you to Himself. As the sealed of God we are Christís purchased possession, and no one shall pluck us out of His hands.óManuscript 59, 1895 (Manuscript Releases, vol. 15, pp. 223-225). {CTr 102.6}

..................
The angel of the Lord encampeth round about them that fear him, and delivereth them. Psalm 34:7.  {HP 98.1}

     If the curtain could be rolled back, and each one could discern the constant activities of the heavenly family to preserve the inhabitants of the earth from Satan's seductive wiles, lest in their careless attitude they should be led astray through satanic strategy, they would lose a large degree of their self-confidence and self-assurance. They would see that the armies of heaven are in continual warfare with satanic agencies, to obtain victories in behalf of those who do not sense their danger, and who are passing on in unconscious indifference.  {HP 98.2} 

     Angels are belting the world, refusing Satan his claims to supremacy, made because of the vast multitude of his adherents. We hear not the voices, we see not with the natural sight the work of these angels, but their hands are linked about the world, and with sleepless vigilance they are keeping the armies of Satan at bay till the sealing of God's people shall be accomplished.  {HP 98.3} 

     The ministers of Jehovah, angels have skill and power and great strength, being commissioned to go forth from heaven to earth to minister to His people. They are given the work of keeping back the raging power of him who has come down like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.  {HP 98.4} 

     When we surrender all we have and are to God, and are placed in trying and dangerous positions, coming in contact with Satan, we should remember that we shall have victory in meeting the enemy in the name and power of the Conqueror. Every angel would be commissioned to come to our rescue, when we thus depend upon Christ, rather than that we should be permitted to be overcome. But we need not expect to get the victory without suffering; for Jesus suffered in conquering for us.  {HP 98.5} 

     The angels of God are communicating with and guarding His people, and are pressing back the powers of darkness that they shall not have any control over those who shall be heirs of salvation. Are we working in harmony with the angels? This is the line of communication the Lord has established with the children of men.  {HP 98.6} 

.................
Before the work is closed up and the sealing of God's people is finished, we shall receive the outpouring of the Spirit of God. Angels from heaven will be in our midst.  {Mar 212.2} 

     Our heavenly Father claims not at our hands that which we cannot perform. He desires His people to labor earnestly to carry out His purpose for them. They are to pray for power, expect power, and receive power, that they may grow up into the full stature of men and women in Christ Jesus.  {Mar 212.3}     
Grateful for Psalms 32 and Titus 2:10 - The divinity of Christ is acknowledged in the unity of the children of God.  {11MR 266.2}

colporteur

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Re: What Must I do to be Saved?
« Reply #18 on: January 01, 2016, 02:23:36 PM »
Good question cp. They certainly do not contradict each other. I see the answer in the second quote. Let's see if one of our  Bible scholars has an answer. Maybe since it is New Years Day in America tomorrow, some may have time to answer.

I decided to edit out and  save my answer to give others a chance to weigh in on this.
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Ed Sutton

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Re: What Must I do to be Saved?
« Reply #19 on: January 02, 2016, 04:20:06 AM »
Colossians 1:27  To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory:

John 15:5  I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.
6  If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned.
7  If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you.
8  Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples.
9 ∂  As the Father hath loved me, so have I loved you: continue ye in my love.
10  If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Fatherís commandments, and abide in his love.
11  These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full.
12  This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you.
13  Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.
14  Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you.
15  Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you.
16  Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.
17  These things I command you, that ye love one another.

under those conditions this becomes true also

John 14:19  Yet a little while, and the world seeth me no more; but ye see me: because I live, ye shall live also.

Galatians 2:20  I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.

1st Corinthians ch 9 & ch 10
24 ∂  Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain.
25  And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible.
26  I therefore so run, not as uncertainly; so fight I, not as one that beateth the air:
27  But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.
1 ∂  Moreover, brethren, I would not that ye should be ignorant, how that all our fathers were under the cloud, and all passed through the sea;
2  And were all baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea;
3  And did all eat the same spiritual meat;
4  And did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ.

Matthew 25:31 ∂  When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory:...................
46  And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal.

Extend mercy because the love from God dwelling in you delights in you extending mercy

John 4:36  And he that reapeth receiveth wages, and gathereth fruit unto life eternal: that both he that soweth and he that reapeth may rejoice together.  (the converts are the wages & character the fruits )

John 12:25  He that loveth his life shall lose it; and he that hateth his life in this world shall keep it unto life eternal.

John 17:3  And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.    ( knowing God = union with God so that the image / mind of Christ dwells in and develops in you )

Ephesians 3:14 - 21
14 ∂  For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
15  Of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named,
16  That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man;
17  That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love,
18  May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height;
19  And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God.
20  Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us,
21  Unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen.

Deuteronomy 30:
1 ∂  And it shall come to pass, when all these things are come upon thee, the blessing and the curse, which I have set before thee, and thou shalt call them to mind among all the nations, whither the LORD thy God hath driven thee,
2  And shalt return unto the LORD thy God, and shalt obey his voice according to all that I command thee this day, thou and thy children, with all thine heart, and with all thy soul;
3  That then the LORD thy God will turn thy captivity, and have compassion upon thee, and will return and gather thee from all the nations, whither the LORD thy God hath scattered thee.
4  If any of thine be driven out unto the outmost parts of heaven, from thence will the LORD thy God gather thee, and from thence will he fetch thee:
5  And the LORD thy God will bring thee into the land which thy fathers possessed, and thou shalt possess it; and he will do thee good, and multiply thee above thy fathers.
6  And the LORD thy God will circumcise thine heart, and the heart of thy seed, to love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, that thou mayest live.


Titus 3:5  Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;

Hosea 2:23  And I will sow her unto me in the earth; and I will have mercy upon her that had not obtained mercy; and I will say to them which were not my people, Thou art my people; and they shall say, Thou art my God.


Romans 9:15  For he saith to Moses, I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion.

Exodus 20:6  And shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments.

Deuteronomy 5:10  And shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me and keep my commandments.

Isaiah 55:7  Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.

Psalms 89:28  My mercy will I keep for him for evermore, and my covenant shall stand fast with him.

Daniel 9:4  And I prayed unto the LORD my God, and made my confession, and said, O Lord, the great and dreadful God, keeping the covenant and mercy to them that love him, and to them that keep his commandments;

Micah 6:8  He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?


Luke 10:25 - 37       25 ∂  And, behold, a certain lawyer stood up, and tempted him, saying, Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?..........................
.......  And he said, He that shewed mercy on him. Then said Jesus unto him, Go, and do thou likewise.

James 2:13  For he shall have judgment without mercy, that hath shewed no mercy; and mercy rejoiceth against judgment.

Jeremiah 23:6  In his days Judah shall be saved, and Israel shall dwell safely: and this is his name whereby he shall be called, THE LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS.

Jeremiah 33:16  In those days shall Judah be saved, and Jerusalem shall dwell safely: and this is the name wherewith she shall be called, The LORD our righteousness.


1 Corinthians 1:30  But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption:
 
Grateful for Psalms 32 and Titus 2:10 - The divinity of Christ is acknowledged in the unity of the children of God.  {11MR 266.2}