Are You Heading
If there is ONE thing you need to investigate diligently, it is this! "But" you say, "Im not sure there is a heaven" or, "I think everyone is going to heaven". WHAT IF YOU ARE WRONG? What if there is a heaven and hell, or what if not everyone is going to heaven? Or, what if most people are heading towards hell?
How can a person get sure answers to such questions? Clear answers to these questions seem to elude the best philosophers and religious leaders. There are so many different answers to the question, "how does a person get to heaven", it can be so confusing. Each religious authority says that their way is the right way to heaven or even worse in terms of confusion, that all roads lead to heaven! I dont know about you, but Ive been on plenty of dead end roads that did not get me to where I wanted to go! Such confusion
Let me suggest a sure way to find the answer. Lets say you want to go somewhere in your town or state where you have never been, and you want to make sure you dont get lost. Someone has told you about a great park to go to and you want to visit. What do you do? You would either ask a person who has been there and who knows the way, to write down directions - or you would find a map, right? Well, let me suggest something beautifully simple and true. Why not do the same thing for knowing the way to heaven? Why not ask someone who knows the way because they have been there and who can give you a map that shows you the way?
You say you dont know anyone who has gone to heaven and come back to tell you the way. Well you may not, but I do! No, its not me - too many weird people out there claiming things like that! No, I know someone who is reliable and trustworthy. This person went there and came back to tell his friends how they can get there! Not only that, he wrote down for us a map that contains the directions! Isnt that really good news?!
The map he left has some explanatory notes which tell how he went to heaven and came back. In the notes at the bottom of the map, the person who went to heaven and came back, said to his friends in the interim between his going to heaven and coming back, "In a little while you will see me no more, and then after a little while you will see me". He said to his friends, regarding the interim between his going to heaven and coming back, "Now I am going to him who sent me, yet none of you asks me, Where are you going? Because I have said these things, you are filled with grief Now is your time of grief, but I will see you again and you will rejoice, and no one will take away your joy".
You see, they didnt understand his method of going to heaven and then coming back. It was beyond their comprehension, so they had a really tough time believing his words. They were just sad to see him go, even though he said he was going to heaven and was coming back.
After he went away to heaven, his friends were really sad because he chose a way to go to heaven that none of them understood. The way he chose seemed so destructive and so unlike how they thought he should choose to go. It was a way they would never dream of choosing themselves. The way he chose seemed so final without any hope of returning to tell them how to get there. But to their utter amazement, a few days after he left, he came back and stood in their midst and said, "Peace be with you". They were in total shock! Could it really be him? One of his friends who was not there when he first appeared, was so skeptical, that he didnt believe he was back until he appeared the second time and he actually touched him with his own hands!
He then reminded his friends of his words to them earlier. He said to them, "Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me. In my Fathers house (heaven) are many dwelling places; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. You know the way to the place where I am going (Heaven)". That same skeptical friend, Thomas, said to him, "Lord, we dont know where you are going, so how can we know the way?" His friend Thomas didnt understand that his Fathers house is heaven. So he answered Thomas and said, "I AM THE WAY and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me."
Do you know who spoke those words above? You know, the person who went to heaven and came back? His name is Joshua (or Jesus) of Nazareth! The map he left is his Words in the gospels in the New Testament, and those Words tell us clearly how to get to heaven. It is very simple and not complicated Jesus is the Way! No, Jesus is not a physical road! No, Jesus is not a Religion or philosophy or karma. Jesus is a living person and he is the "road" to heaven in a sense, since the way to heaven is found in trusting in Jesus and obeying him! The "road" is a real, personal, loving, respectful RELATIONSHIP with Jesus of Nazareth, the Unique Son of the true and living God.
Jesus says, "I am the Way for wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction ,and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it". Jesus says, "I am the gate; whoever enters through Me will be saved".
Do you believe the words of the one who went to heaven and came back to prove all that he said and did was true? The friends of Jesus were eyewitnesses to his first return from heaven. They saw him after his resurrection, and were with him frequently for about 40 days after his crucifixion, until he went back to be with his Father.
You can know the one who not only knows the way to heaven, but Who Is the Way to heaven! But before you can get on the Way to heaven, you must first stop ignoring the Way, and then believe in the Way. You see, Jesus says he is the only sure way. Remember, not all roads lead to heaven, just like all roads dont lead to your house! Why should you believe Jesus, and not Buddha or Mohammed or the Pope or Joseph Smith, et al? Well, none of these other folks were wise enough to defeat death! They all died or will die. Jesus is radically different. Only he has the power to defeat death, and this was proved by his defeating death! As Mary testified, "He is Risen!"
As you read this, perhaps your heart is affected. Perhaps you see how you have been ignoring God - not living up to his desire that you love Him with all your heart, soul, mind and strength. Perhaps you can see for the first time that you are GUILTY of the greatest sin, which is you never had true faith in God and His Son? You knew ABOUT God, but you never entered into a Life of true faith. You might have even been trying to serve the God you did not personally know, but this is not what God wants. If you are truly seeing this spiritually, then you should be experiencing some fairly strong emotions associated with what is happening inside you now. Jesus calls this repentance, which is true remorse over your unbelief and sin.
So, what does God want of you right now, at this moment? It is this simple...believe His Son...listen to His Son...trust in Himself and His Son. This is what God wants of you right now. Don't play the fool and turn away. Don't reject a love so great that a loving, compassionate Father sent His beloved Son, knowing His Son would be horribly mistreated and killed because many would reject His love. Admit that you have been one who has rejected His love up to this point, and then turn from your unbelief and sin and start to love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength. Make Jesus your only personal Teacher, Master, Leader, Lord, King of your life, and then you will know Life. And then you will have been truly born from above, or born again! And if you do this, rejoice as you have entered into salvation! Rejoice as you have passed from death to life...from darkness into Light! Rejoice that you have been received by your Father who is in heaven, and who has been waiting for you to come to Him your whole adult life! Rejoice that you are now a child of God, beloved by a compassionate and all powerful Father!
What does God want of you after you are born again? He wants you to get to know Him and His Son. The best way to start this process is by reading Jesus' Words to you in the gospels. Get a New Testament if you donít already have one. I would recommend these translations Ė the New American Standard or the New King James Version. Read the gospel of John in the New Testament, and then read Matthew, Mark and Luke. Don't make the great mistake of thinking that all of the bible is God's Word, for it is not [see Is the bible God's Word?]. Jesus is God's Word to man, thus the only guidance you need on how to live your life to please God is Jesus and his Words and teachings ONLY. Keep reading his Words in the gospels and start to DO what you see him saying to you. Only if you obey will you be able to grow in your personal knowing of his Father and himself. To continue in the Life that Jesus gives you, you must be faithful to him, and that means to receive what he teaches, and try your best to do what he says.
It is very important that you know that if you do not thirst to know Jesus, by reading his Words in the gospels, and by desiring with all that is in you, to obey ALL his commands, then you have not entered into His salvation [link to Do You Love Jesus?]. You must also know that Jesus says that if you want to be his disciple, you must forsake what this world has to offer in order to follow him (Luke 14:33). Do not be afraid of Jesus or his commands, for he is the Way, the Truth and the Life (John 14:6). Ask Jesus to show you the things you need to start giving up in order to follow after him.
If you need some disciples to stay with, our house is open to you.
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