What is Life? That is a question, I have asked myself many times over the last few years. Now that I’m a bit more advanced in age, this question becomes more frequent. What is Life? Why am I here? What is the purpose of Life?
I have seen some of my friends pass on in the last few years and one begins to wonder, why and what happened to them? I remember those who have passed, when they were younger, full of life and energy, vibrant and driven. Some of my friends were taken by cancer or some other illness. Death is something most people don’t think about in the younger years.
In our youth some of us thought we are invincible and the thought of maybe one day ending up with something like cancer really never entered the mind. Who wants to think about death, or which way we may die? Death is so final. Everyone of us will have to face death one day, sooner or later. The statistics on death are pretty overwhelming, one out of one will die. No exceptions made.
There are those, who believe, that when a person dies, they cease to exist. Those who believe that, are those who also believe, that mankind came to be by chance, by accident. Humans came to be as part of a long process, known as evolution. Some 4.6 billion years ago, some cosmic event, aka the big bang, caused the universe and the earth to be formed. Every plant life and every living creature slowly started to evolve, into what we see today. All this happened through the process of natural selection, according to the theory of Darwin.
Personally, I can not buy into the theory of evolution.
To evolutionist, life came about by chance. They do not believe in creation, or that there is something after death. They believe, once a person dies, there is nothingness and nothing more. We simply cease to exist.
I believe that life is precious and that we were wonderfully made by a loving Creator. I believe in a God that created the universe and everything in it. We are no accident or just here by chance. We are here for a purpose and we were created for Him and by Him.
Atheist, state that there is no God. Atheist believe in themselves and mankind. They believe that all the problems in the world can be be fixed by man. They don’t need or want God. For them there is no higher authority, no deity, no one that will hold them accountable on the day they die. They don’t believe that there is a thing like heaven or hell, judgment or eternal life.
A life without God, makes no sense to me. A life without a future or hope.
I believe that somehow, we all have eternity written on our hearts. No one, wants to grow old and eventually die, if given the choice. We long for life.
Am I to believe, that I am here for 70 to 80+ years and then nothing?
Was I just born, to live a life that is filled with trials and tribulations, a life of laughter and tears, a life of happiness and sadness, to one day just die?
I am no accident and you are no accident. You and I were created by a loving God. When God first created Adam and Eve, he created them as eternal beings. Death came about when Adam and Eve disobeyed God in the garden. This one-act of disobedience resulted in death, a spiritual death, a disconnect from God. It also brought forth physical death, and from that day on, all of creation was and is subject to death and decay.
I believe in the afterlife. I know that when this physical body, that is the flesh, of mine dies, my spirit will live on. The Bible teaches, “to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord.”
That is the glorious hope that every believer in Jesus Christ has. Jesus defeated death on the cross and he has promised eternal life to all who believe in him by faith.
By believing in Jesus as Lord and Savior he has reconciled us to God the father through his death and resurrection. He closed the spiritual gap that existed between mankind and God.
Because of what Jesus did for us, we once again can have fellowship with God, as it was in the beginning before the fall.
Unfortunately, there are many who do not believe in Jesus and His finished work on the cross. They refuse to believe and to receive the free gift of life, that Jesus promised to all those who believe.
They rather buy into the theory of evolution, discarding creation and God. They are what the Bible calls, “the natural man” who live after the desires of the flesh, having no understanding of spiritual things.
“But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.” 1Corinthians 2:14.
Of course I cannot prove that there is life after death and neither can they disprove it. I believe by faith, just as atheist or evolutionist believe by faith that there is no God.
Frankly, I do not have enough faith to be an Atheist or to believe in evolution.
What is life? That is the question that Atheist and those who do not believe in the promises of God should ask themselves. What happens after they die, will there be darkness or is it not possible that there is more?
What if all we believers in Jesus are right, when we talk about eternal life? What if we are right, about Jesus and what His death on the cross has accomplished for those who believe by faith?
Life is nothing but a fleeting moment and there will come a day when we will face death. As a believer, I do not fear death, because I have already received eternal life, because of my faith in Jesus.
What about you? Do you believe that when you die, that you cease to exist? If so, you better be right. Believing that there is no afterlife, means to deny what Jesus said before He went to the cross. Those who do not believe His words, make Him a liar. Something to at least think about. Here is what Jesus said:
“And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life.
For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.
For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved. He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God
And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.
There have been times, when I turned on the News on TV that they interviewed prominent Christian Pastors about the Christian faith and what Christians believe. They ask some general questions and then there is the one direct question that the host will ask the Pastors: “Do you really believe that Jesus is the only way to Heaven?”
When I hear that question, I cringe. What answer will this Pastor give and will he tell the truth or trying to avoid a confrontation with the host and the audience?
Sadly, I must say that most of these prominent Pastors failed miserably and danced around the question. Why? Are they afraid to speak the truth, or are the afraid that some people might get offended by the truth?
Jesus Himself said, “I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father, but by Me.” John 14:6
This statement alone by Jesus would make Christianity very exclusive. Jesus is plain and simply saying that there are no other ways to be reconciled with the Father but through Him. Was He lying when He made that statement?
Disciples and followers of Christ know this to be true, but there are of course many others that do not agree with that statement. There are for one those of a different faith that would not agree either. Than there are those who have no faith or “religion” at all and lastly those who call themselves Christians, who have become lukewarm and departed from the truth and follow the doctrine of men.
People of a different faith sometimes call Christianity the “exclusive Club” and it is not surprising when they post the question: “What makes you think that you as Christians are the only once that have a relationship with God and we are not? We believe in a god, just not your God.
Was the Apostle Peter lying when he said: “Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.” Acts 4:12
Muslims claim that Allah is the true god and that all other people of faith are infidels. I have heard Jewish people say that they will automatically go to heaven just because of their Jewish faith.
Hindus worship over 3.3 million gods and Buddhist, which is really not a religion but more of a philosophy, believe that they can reach Nirvana if the follow certain steps and the teachings of Buddha. Buddhist also believe in re-incarnation. A do over if it didn’t work out as they had hoped in this lifetime.
What is the truth and who is right? Christians are not the one that made the statement about the only way to heaven, it was Jesus. So, those who have a problem with what Jesus said have to ask Him. Jesus, Who is God (2nd person of the triune Godhead) is the only One that came to reconcile the world to God, by laying down His life on the cross so that those who believe by faith will find forgiveness, salvation and eternal life. He was the Passover lamb, the promised Messiah.
“Therefore, in all things He had to be made like His brethren, that He might be a merciful and faithful High Priest in things pertaining to God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people.” Hebrews 2:17
“And He Himself is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the whole world.” 1John 2:2
“In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins.” 1John 4:10
All other religion are man-made and there is only One true and living God. Christians believe in the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. The Creator of all things, Who created us for His pleasure and to fellowship with Him just as Adam and Eve did before the fall. When sin entered the world, mankind was spiritually separated from God.
Jesus bridged that gap by going to the cross to die for our sins. It is through His blood that we can be reconciled with the father. After Adam and Eve disobeyed God, they tried to cover themselves with fig leafs to hide their nakedness. God clothed them in animal skins, signifying the first blood sacrifice. He did not accept a fig leaf religion i.e man made. Later at the time of Moses, God in the law required animal sacrifices for the sins of the people. The passover lamb which took place once a year was a picture of Jesus our propitiation. The blood of the animals could only cover the sins, the blood of Christ on the cross took away the sins once and for all. ”
“But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement for our peace was upon Him, and by His stripes we are healed.” Isaiah 53:5
God gave His only begotten Son and He paid a very costly price by having Jesus hang on the cross to be the substitute, the propitiation for our sins. Through His blood we are healed because He did what we could not do for ourselves. God the Father looks at the believers through the blood of Christ and he does no longer see our sins, He sees Jesus, Who’s righteousness was imputed onto those who believe by faith, just as Abraham did when he believed God.
So when Jesus said, I am the way, the truth and the life, no one will come to Father but by Me, I have absolutely no problem believing the words of Jesus. He died for my sins and the sin of the world. Because of Him, we can come boldly before the throne of God and we have once again a relationship with God through faith and not of works. All man-made religions are works based, man trying to reach God on their own merit i.e a Fig Leaf Religion. All other religions are trying to reach God, in pure Christianity, God is reaching down to man.
Not everybody will agree with what I wrote because they will argue that there are many other religions with good people who seek and love God, so why would you even think that only Christians know the real God and are the only once that go to heaven because of Jesus? My answer is that I believe Jesus and I believe that He died and rose for me so that I may have eternal life. No one else can claim that. No Muhammad, no Krishna, or any one else.
If you are of a different faith, you have to ask yourself this question: Does my god love me as a loving father or is my god angry at me because I can’t live up to his/her expectations? Do I have assurance of my salvation? Are my sins forgiven? Can I be sure that I will go to heaven when I die? If you have any uncertainties, you may want to at least learn about Jesus. Jesus said, seek and you shall find. If you feel empty or a void in your heart, ask Jesus to reveal Himself to you. He loves you with all of His heart and He does not want you to perish. Many people will perish because they have either rejected the free gift of salvation or they do not want to come to the truth. People make their own choices because of the free will given to us by God. Many people have heard about Jesus, but are not willing to listen or surrender. Bad choice. The following verses are also the words of Jesus:
“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved. He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed. But he who does the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be clearly seen, that they have been done in God.” John 3:16-21
By having a close and personal relationship with my Lord Jesus instead of religion, I am very pleased to be a member of the “Exclusive Club.”
Today I’m posting a video by my good friends Christafari and their newly released song, He is Greater Than I. Christafari has reached many souls with their music all around the world.
God has done many great things in my life. He freed me from Alcohol, Drugs and a lifestyle of destruction. He is Greater than all of those things that kept me in bondage. There is nothing to great for Him, because our God is Greater. What has God done and is doing in your life? Greater things are to come if we put out trust and faith in Him.
“For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 8:38, 39.
If you like to know more about the band, please visit: http://christafari.com or http://gospelreggae.com Visit iTunes to see all their albums and music that is available for downloads: https://itunes.apple.com/us/artist/christafari/id28546692
- Christafari Live in San Diego (Slideshow) (media4lifephotography.com)
Many of you have heard by now that my beloved Pastor Chuck Smith, the founder and father of Calvary Chapel went to be with the Lord this morning. He will be greatly missed. He was instrumental to so many people over the past 40+ years.
A true man of God and teacher of the word. “Simply teach the Bible simply” was his way to teach the word to many all over the world. He had a great influence in my life, my faith and walk with the Lord.
I feel honored and blessed, that I have met him a couple of times. I can truly say that he was a gentle man who loved the Lord with all of his heart.
He has fought the good fight, ran the race and he heard the words, well done my good and faithful servant when he arrived and saw Jesus’ face to face for the first time. I’m sure, that Jesus had a big smile on his face when He saw Pastor Chuck and welcomed him in His loving arms.
There aren’t enough words to describe what this man has meant to me and many others. Please pray for his family and remember him with joy and gladness in your hearts.
We love you Pastor Chuck and we will see you soon.“We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.” 2 Cr 5:8.
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His abundant mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled and that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, who are kept by the power of God through faith for salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.” 1 Peter 1-5.
I lost a good friend just yesterday, Saturday July the 6th. Vaughn Butterbrodt went to be with the Lord after a long battle with cancer.
Please pray for his wife Mary and his son Beau, pray that the Lord may comfort them both for their loss of a wonderful husband and father.
Personally, I will miss Vaughn a lot. We were both in a small group together that met every Saturday morning to study God’s word. I have come to love and respect Vaughn over the years and I can say the same with absolute certainty for all the other men in the group.
Vaughn attended Maranatha Chapel, which is my home church, before attending Olive Branch Christian Fellowship, led by my friend and Pastor Scott Gehrman, who just lost his wife due to pancreatic cancer.
I’m sure that many of my Maranatha friends remember Vaughn very well. Vaughn has touched many lives, not only people at church, but lives all over the country because of his bout with cancer. It was because of his cancer that Vaughn became involved with a network of people who have the same disease. People that did not know each other, but were brought together to love and support each other because they had one common denominator. They would be praying for one another and share their testimonies and daily struggles with this terrible disease.
I remember Vaughn telling me about some of the guys that he met through this network. How he became friends with many, exchanging e-mails, lifting people up in prayer and encourage each other. A circle of people who became friends, just ordinary people who would not have met, if it were not for the same disease they shared. Vaughn also lost some of his friends during that time. Some of them were believers in Jesus and some were not. Those who were not, never said no when asked by those who were believers if they could pray for them.
I am truly convinced, that the Lord used Vaughn’s affliction to minister to those who needed a word of encouragement and a word of comfort. Vaughn, despite of his illness, thought of others rather than himself. He helped those that needed someone to lift up their spirits; Vaughn was that man. God used Vaughn’s character and strong faith to minister to others who needed a word of hope and comfort in a time of grief and suffering.
We may not always understand why people have to suffer from various diseases and illnesses and why some people get healed and some people not. We may ask ourselves, why does God allow all this suffering? My answer to that, I don’t know. I don’t know why God allowed Vaughn and others to suffer from cancer or why He allows so many other terrible things happening to people all over the world. One thing I know for sure though, all things have a purpose. Nothing is by accidents or coincidences. There are reasons beyond our comprehension. God is in control and He knows why. God’s ways are not our ways and there are things that our finite minds cannot comprehend or understand.
“For My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways My ways,” says the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts.” Isaiah 55: 8, 9.
The Lord took Vaughn home, to a place of peace and joy. One day we will understand why things were the way they were. God, Who sees the end from the beginning, had His purposes and who knows, what God worked for good through Vaughn’s afflictions. Whatever Vaughn had to go through, it had a purpose and was not in vain. Whatever we may face in the future, will be for a purpose and to glorify God.
I will miss you buddy, but one day Vaughn, I will see you again. One day, when the Lord will bring us all back together into a new world without pain and suffering.
Vaughn, we who remain will keep on fighting the good fight and run the race as you have my friend. I can’t wait to see you again. Until then, farewell my friend.
“We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.” 2 Cr 5:8.
“I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.” John 8:12
“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” John 3:16
Media 4 Life Ministries is exited to announce that our new apps will be available for download this fall.
At no time in history has it been easier to be a true Christian as today. We all want convenience and we here at Media 4 Life Ministries have made that possible with our new apps soon to be released for the iPhone.
(Sorry Android users, you may have to wait a bit longer.) We are working hard, so you don’t have to. Here is a preview of what’s to come. We are getting great reviews from the public. Don’t miss out on this new way of doing church.
Need forgiveness? No problem, with our app you can ask God for forgiveness without even talking to a Pastor or Priest. This app will give you a 100% assurance that you are forgiven. Monthly subscription fee and registration are required.
Done something wrong? Use this app to confess your wrongs and they will be erased. This app comes with a monitoring dashboard which can be used to keep track and lets you see the history of your past wrongs. Easy to use and never fails.
Want to know how much faith you have if any? This app gives you an easy way to monitor and test your current faith level. Is you faith at an all time low?
For a monthly subscription we can show you how to increase your faith and keep it that way. No more worrying and sleepless nights.
Not sure if you are saved? Answer a few simple questions and this app will show you whether you are saved or not. 100% guaranteed results. If you are not saved, use the iRepent app.
Are you an habitual sinner? No problem, with this app you can check your progress with an easy instruction manual that will help you to forsake your habitual sins, step by step, one day at a time. Free with the purchase of complete app package.
Are you tired of coming to the church early for worship? No problem this app will let you worship in the car while you on the way to church.
Tired of getting out of bed on Sunday mornings? This virtual church app lets you attend church anytime you want, without getting out of bed. No shirt or shoes required. This is a free app and our love gift to you.
Not sure if you are going to heaven?
Our apps lets you monitor your progress. Media 4 Life Ministries wants nothing more than to make sure that you to go to heaven. That’s why we are making these apps available at a low-cost to you.
“Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your King is coming to you; He is just and having salvation, Lowly and riding on a donkey, A colt, the foal of a donkey. Zech 9:9.
Today we celebrated the triumphant entry of Jesus into the City of David, Jerusalem. His arrival was not any arrival, He had gone to feast of Passover before, but this was the day the Lord had made.
It was God’s divinely appointed day. Jesus would be crucified a few days later on Passover, the sacrificial lamb of God, the One that Abraham spoke of when he was asked to sacrifice Issac. “The Lord will provide a sacrifice.” Gen 22:8.
Jesus was that lamb on Mount Moriah 2000 years later. Our propitiation. By His stripes we are healed. By His blood we are cleansed and forgiven and have eternal life. Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good.
“This is the day the LORD has made; We will rejoice and be glad in it.” Ps 118:24