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God offers salvation; man must accept

POSTED: March 16, 2017 5:30 p.m.

Within every person resides a soul. This soul is given by God and will live somewhere in eternity. The place, heaven or hell, is determined by each individual and how they live their lives (Matthew 25:46).

God’s desire is that all men be saved (1 Timothy 2:3-4). In his word he has made it clear that there is a place which was prepared for the devil (Matthew 25:41), and those who refuse his offer of salvation will spend eternity there.

When Jesus stated that he had come so his sheep could have life and that abundantly (John 10:10), he was offering something that only God can give. God gives man a choice to make and that choice is up to the individual, if they choose to take advantage of the "abundant life" offered by Christ, they can be saved and spend eternity in heaven. If they choose to ignore the offer of God they will spend eternity in hell.

Many only see the here and now, not the future. Some do not even believe in God, or that they have a soul. They scoff at those who follow God, (1 Corinthians 1:18; 2 Peter 3:3-5). This attitude has existed since the beginning, when man sinned. Man turned his back on God and followed his own way. This led and will lead one to destruction.

Christians know there is an eternity and are able to look beyond the realm of the physical to the glories of heaven. The Christian desires eternal life and realizes that laboring for the Lord is rewarding not only now but in eternity (Matthew 6:19-20).

Taking advantage of the "abundant life" requires following God’s word as it is without addition or subtraction. John recorded the Lord’s warnings against the "thief" or "false teacher," who has no regard for the "flock" but is only out for his own selfish ways. Those who follow false ways fail to understand the need follow God’s word.

Jesus said, "Not everyone that saith unto me, Lord, Lord shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity" (Matthew7:21-23).

The way of the false teacher leads to death (John 10:10), but the way of Christ leads to life.

Everyone must search the scriptures (John 5:39), and study to be approved of God (2 Timothy 2:15) and seek out God’s will, and then they must obey the commands given (James 1:23). God wants man to be saved, but man must be willing to follow God.

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