10 Life-essential Q&A’s
Welcome! You may be about to experience the most important few minutes of your life. A little over the top, you say? Well, if you’re not absolutely sure about God and how you fit into His creation, then your destiny on earth and for eternity is unresolved. That is not an overstatement. How you react and respond to the following ten questions is more important than anything else in your life—anything else.
- Is there a higher power than ourselves that created and controls everything that exists?
- From a macro perspective, the vastness and precision of the celestial universe are not accidental or random. Most astrophysicists agree that the inconceivable universe being established by chance has a probability of one to a number with more zeroes than anyone could write in a lifetime. In other words, uncontrolled creation is impossible. On the micro end of the spectrum, molecules that make up all matter, living and non-living, are formed from atoms which have been with us from the beginning of time. There are no post-creation atoms. Yet molecules change, cells reproduce, and matter takes on new forms continuously. Such complexity requires initiation and management by unlimited power. No one who is honest with himself or herself can deny the miracle of a tree from a seed, the instincts of animals, the birth of a baby, the healing of wounds and diseases, the functions of the brain, or the mystery of love. Legitimate science never contradicts a higher power, but is merely the study of the works of that higher power. Science and physics can only make sense with the assumption of an ultimate designer and creator.
- When I consider Your heavens, the works of Your fingers, the moon and the stars, which You have set in place, what is man that You are mindful of him? Psalm 8:3-4
- Is that higher power explained in a creating and sustaining singular God?
- Throughout human history, we have attempted to satisfy our natural need for a higher power by making our own god or gods. Every person has an innate need to worship a higher power in the form of something tangible. Man-made idols have been worshiped as well as the sun, the stars, animals, etc. Even other humans were accepted as gods. Today, concepts such as energy, karma, and earth-worship are being embraced in the search for life’s meaning. Yet, only the one true God has related to mankind from the beginning through His creation, selected prophets, His Spirit, and the written Word—the miraculous Bible. The one true God has always been present with man and will be forever. He has been consistent. He has transcended all history, all cultures, all people groups, and all ethnicities. His involvement in the minds and hearts of men and women preceded that of all other so-called gods and will continue eternally. He is the personification of the full concept of the higher power. He is the one and only all-knowing, ever present, and all-powerful God.
- In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Genesis 1:1/You shall have no other gods before me. Exodus 10:3
- Can we really know God?
- Some theorize that God did create all things, put the laws of physics in motion, but then left it all to its own destiny. That comes from those who demand to see Him physically, but who refuse to see His constant interaction among us in countless other ways. He could not abandon His creation any more than a loving parent could abandon his or her child. God created us in His own image to relate to us through His total creation, His Spirit, His Word (the Bible), and other people. His desire was not to make us his puppets whom He could control. He purposely gave us a free will to accept His love and guidance or reject Him entirely. Being created in His image means that we have His character, but, of course, not His abilities. Our human desires to love, to be loved, to communicate, to do good, to reproduce, to sympathize, and to give and receive justice are examples of our character aligning with His. He loves us and yearns to relate to us as we do to our own children. He not only wants us to know Him, but longs for our intimacy with Him.
- God created man in His own image. Genesis 1:27/ For the Lord gives wisdom, and from his mouth come knowledge and understanding. Proverbs 2:6
- Then, why does he not protect us from evil, pain, and misfortune?
- This age-old question is not easily answered without considerable theological study. Within the limitations of this summary, let’s just touch on the basics. The Bible says, before creation as we know it, there was God and His created heavenly beings, the angels. The angels were given free will much like ours. Then, God created a perfect world with perfect people who would live forever, but with their own will. That was His objective—an extension of heaven on earth. An angel, called Lucifer, chose to generate a rebellion with some other angels against God. God cast him out of heaven, and he came to reside on earth to tempt man to rebel against God and join him, thus spoiling God’s plan. A woman called Eve succumbed to Lucifer’s urging and disobeyed God. Then, a man called Adam followed her in disobedience. Because of that first sin, or “fall,” God, enacting perfect justice, expelled mankind from His provision allowing them to choose Lucifer, also known as Satan or the Devil, over Himself. We have since lived in this “fallen” world where Satan reigns in the spiritual realm inflicting pain, sickness, hatred, disaster, etc., followed by physical death. Satan’s objective is to destroy God’s creation. He deceives us and tempts us to sin in all manner of ways. He is the personification of evil. God protects us from all this in the form of His forgiveness, salvation, and ultimate victory over it if we accept His offer to be rescued—to be saved. In this relatively short life, we have to choose whether to follow our loving Creator or Satan who wants to ultimately destroy us.
- Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. 1 Peter 5:8/ In this world you will have trouble. But, take heart, I (Jesus) have overcome the world. John 16:33
- If I am a good, moral person and go to church, won’t God reward that?
- The principal deception that Satan uses is the logical conclusion that we can work and live good enough to earn God’s acceptance. Satan wants us to believe that all the way to our grave. The truth is you can’t be good enough for Him to save you, and you can’t be bad enough for Him to not save you. God is perfect and cannot tolerate any sin whatsoever. Our purity before Him comes through Jesus Christ. It has nothing to do with how good we are or how involved we are in “religious” things. Good deeds come from salvation; good deeds don’t earn salvation. Those who rely on a church process, a training program, or a statement of belief do so in vain, because that is not how the gift of salvation is obtained. We all fall short of God’s standards. However, because He loves each of us so much, He has offered us the only way we can meet his standards, and that is through abandoning our efforts to live right and depending on Jesus’ death on the cross to do what we can’t.
- For it is by grace you have been saved through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast. Ephesians 2:8-9/ Not everyone who says to Me, “Lord, Lord,” will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter. Matthew 7:21
- But, is Jesus the only way to God’s forgiveness and eternal life?
- After the fall of mankind, God began a lineage of a particular people, the Israelites, that He raised up to be His own. He promised to be with them through the generations. He gave them His laws and guided them for centuries as they lived in the land of Israel. His guidance required animal sacrifices as atonement for their sins. Knowing they would still choose to sin against Him and reject Him, He revealed through His prophets over many generations His plan to come to earth through His Son in the physical form of a man. This Son, Jesus, would pay for their sins, once and for all, by offering Himself as the ultimate and final sacrifice. Jesus was predicted by prophets of the Old Testament many times between 600 and 1000 years before He was born. About 2,000 years ago, God sent his Son, Jesus, to earth to teach us about Himself and to be killed on a cross for our sins. Three days after His death, He arose from the grave and later ascended into heaven to be with His Father. Jesus’ death and resurrection forever ensure God’s forgiveness of our sins if we believe in Him. We no longer try to escape Satan’s hold by our actions, but by our faith in Jesus. This belief by faith in Jesus connects us with Him in this life and assures us of eternal life with Him in heaven. God provided no other way–Jesus is sufficient. False religions have elevated the teachings of particular men and required particular actions as pathways to God. Those men all died, and their teachings and requirements are impossible to attain. All of their lies are from the Devil. No one can earn his or her way to heaven other than through committed faith in Jesus Christ.
- Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. John 14:6
- What is all this about Jesus coming to earth again?
- Every prophesy in the Bible has been fulfilled, except for one—the return of Jesus to earth and the events that surround it. If everything that was predicted by the prophets many centuries ago has occurred and been recorded by the historians up to now, why would this one final prediction not be accomplished? It will be. The Bible is clear that no one knows the time of his coming, but many things that immediately precede it are known. Most of those things have recently happened or are now happening. When Jesus comes suddenly someday, He will bring heaven to earth and reign as the king of the world forever. He will judge everyone and choose those who have been saved to be with Him for eternity. Satan and his demons will be finally condemned along with those who have rejected Jesus. It will be too late for those who haven’t accepted Him by faith. Waiting any longer to decide what you will do with Jesus’ invitation to receive Him could be disastrous for your life–eternally disastrous.
- At that time men will see the Son of Man coming in clouds with great power and glory…and gather His elect…from the ends of the earth… Mark 13:26
- How do I accept Jesus through faith as my Savior?
- First, you must be open to His call and willing to allow Him to be totally in charge of your life. You need to feel His tugging at your heart inviting you to come to Him for forgiveness. You can’t just decide to try this as an option. It is a permanent commitment. You have to be genuinely remorseful for having rejected Him for the sinful life of this world. You must repent of your sins. To repent means to turn-around your life. Having surrendered to His invitation, you should pray in private something like this (exact words are not necessary): God, I’m sorry I haven’t lived the life you created me to live, but have sinned against you and rejected you. Thank you for showing me my real condition and inviting me to become a child of yours. Please forgive me for falling short of your expectations. I believe Jesus died on the cross for me, rose from the grave, and lives forever as my savior with you. I surrender my life totally to you through Jesus Christ. I will follow you to the best of my ability. Thank you for the promise of your Holy Spirit in this life and the gift of eternal life with you in heaven. In the name of Jesus, I pray this prayer of salvation.
- That if you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. Romans 10:9-10
- How will my life change after accepting Jesus?
- Probably the first thing you will notice is the presence of the Holy Spirit within you. Jesus promises His Spirit to every believer. It’s somewhat difficult to understand, but the one true God is actually a trinity of three persons in one—God the Father, Jesus the Son, and the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is God in the form of a spiritual being that literally dwells in your soul. You will recognize Him speaking to you through your thoughts and conscience. He will answer your prayers by giving you wisdom and understanding that is beyond your own ability. It may take a while to consistently discern his communication with you, but it will improve as you rely on Him. You will still have a sin nature. You still live in a fallen world, and Satan will be even more aggressive in tempting you. He will not go away, but, because you’re a child of God, he cannot destroy you. Satan will try to convince you that your salvation is not real and that you are unworthy of it, because you still sin. The difference is that your new love of Jesus will encourage you to turn from sin. You will no longer want to sin, even though you will fail to avoid it sometimes. The Bible teaches us to confess our sins to the Lord as an acknowledgement of His love for us and an assurance of our relationship with Him. The good news is that you will always be pure in God’s sight because Jesus covered all of your sins when He died on the cross. All you have to do is remember God’s forgiveness when you sin. You are free from the slavery of sinful living and trying to be good enough. Next to eternal life, the greatest blessing from salvation is the abundant peace you receive that is beyond understanding. This is a peace regarding other people, a peace in all circumstances, and even a peace with inevitable death, all because you have given God control of everything in your life. You should ask God to lead you to a church through which you can worship Him, minister to others, gain Christian friends, study the Bible, and share your faith. God’s plan for His work in the world is through His church. Jesus asked all believers to be baptized as a demonstration of their death to sin and new life in Christ. Then, be faithful in telling others about what the Lord has done in saving you. Following Christ is not a private matter. He asks us to be public about it. It is a never-ending pursuit. You will continually be learning more about Him, about prayer, about the Bible, about how He has worked throughout history, and how he works today in your life and the lives of others.
- But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses…to the ends of the earth. Acts 1:8
- What will eternal life in heaven be like?
- Jesus promised that He would prepare a place in heaven for all who have trusted in Him. The Bible further teaches that to die is to be immediately with Jesus. The Bible gives us considerable insight into what heaven is like. It is a perfect place for us like God’s original plan for all creation. There will be no sadness, no sickness, no pain, no hatred, and no want for anything. It will be more beautiful than anything we have ever seen. We will have responsibilities and will work, but without exhaustion. We will no longer worship by faith, but by sight as we serve the God of all creation who loves us eternally. After a time in the heaven removed from earth, we will come back to earth with Jesus when He establishes His new heaven and new earth. We will ultimately live on this new, perfected earth again for eternity with Him. Of course, all of this is dependent on our salvation. Those who die without Jesus will never experience heaven. Instead, they will live eternally separated from God in a tortuous place called hell as their rightful judgment for non-repented, unforgiven sin. An illustration that may help us visualize eternity is the dot and the line. The dot below represents the relatively short time we are given for this life. The line represents eternity in comparison. But, the line you see would actually extend off of this page and into the next county, the next state, across the ocean, around the world, and to the moon and back. And, that would only be the beginning of eternity. Eternity is beyond comprehension by our limited minds. But, it is yours through faith in Jesus Christ.
- And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with Me that you may be where I am. John 14:3
I would be glad to discuss these Q&A’s further with you. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.