What A Place!

Man began life here on earth in harmony and union with his maker. Then came the test! Would man continue that way or would he rebel? A decision must be made. Man chose rebellion and has suffered the consequences ever since. If you have the mistaken idea that God sat wringing His hands wondering how man would decide, you are way off base. God didn’t have a Plan B. He knew exactly how man would decide. The sacrifice of His Son was a “given” before the foundation of the world! Man had to be faced with the results of his rejection of God’s will. He had to see how wicked and corrupt his fallen humanity is. He had to feel guilt and conviction for his crimes against God. He had to behold the damage done by human sin. He had to feel and admit his inability to do even one thing on his own to rescue himself. Man was left with complete unrighteousness and any supposed righteousness from his own efforts reeks of pride and is a stench in the nostrils of God. When he realizes his hopelessness and helplessness and throws himself on the mercy and grace of God, he discovers that God has given him a chance to undo Adam’s damage in his life. We are all sinners! Any sinner who will truly choose to receive Jesus as Savior and Lord, is restored to Spiritual life and will spend eternity with God in Heaven. With the perfect righteousness of Christ credited to him, he begins the remainder of his time on earth experiencing God’s sanctifying power. Sin is being overcome and God’s life is taking over his inner being. When a saved man or woman comes to the end of this earthly life….(to be continued)

.In II Peter 3:9 we discover that the Lord….”is not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.”

A. J. Hodge has asked a soul-searching question in his hymn: “Have You Counted the Cost?”  “There’s a line that is drawn by rejecting our Lord,  where the call of His Spirit is lost,  and you hurry along with the pleasure-mad throng –  have you counted, have you counted the cost? You may barter your hope of eternity’s morn,  for a moment of joy at the most,  For the glitter of sin and the things it will win –  have you counted, have you counted the cost? Have you counted the cost, if your soul should be lost,  tho’ you gain the whole world for your own?  Even now it may be that the line you have crossed, have you counted, have you counted the cost?” Selah! We deserve no mercy from God! Nevertheless, God offers it to all who will receive His Son. The offer is on the table! If you have taken advantage of it, praise God! If you haven’t, count the cost because the offer can be withdrawn at any time for any unsaved person!   Ron

Questions? E-Mail me at knowingtheway1@gmail.com 

Mass Destruction!

God, in Genesis 1:31, says this about the first dwelling place for mankind on earth: “And God saw every thing that He had made, and, behold, it was very good….” Now, fast forward to II Peter 3:12: “Nevertheless we, according to His promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness.” Something happened in that early marvelous habitation that has damaged every human being from then to this future time that Peter said would come. Sin entered mankind through the fall of Adam and Eve, and has wrought mass destruction upon all people, even wounding and crucifying Christ, Who was without sin. So great is this destruction that only those who come to Christ escape being eternally lost. If God hadn’t intervened, no one could ever enter Heaven! Why? Because, as sinful man has brought corruption and devastation upon our planet, sinful man would likewise ruin Heaven. So John tells us in Revelation 21:27 that: “….there shall in no wise enter into it (Heaven) anything that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh abomination, or maketh a lie: but they which are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life.” All others will continue to experience forever, the destruction that sin brings. Is there any help or hope for anyone to enter Heaven? Absolutely! In complete trust in Christ’s invitation to be saved, all who trust Him as Savior and Lord will be credited with His perfect righteousness. This righteousness fits them for Heaven! At the moment of entry; at the time of seeing Jesus face to face, all sin(s) will be removed forever, thus putting a stop to its destruction. Those who do not receive Him have no way to escape sin’s destruction in Hell. If you know Him in this saving relationship, rejoice! Your name is written in the Lamb’s Book of Life! In the hymn, “Face to Face,” Carrie E. Breck gives us a slight glimpse of what awaits those that have escaped destruction” “What rejoicing in His Presence when are banished grief and pain; when the crooked ways are straightened and the dark things shall be plain. Face to face I shall behold Him, far beyond the starry sky; Face to face in all His glory, I shall see Him by and by.Selah! Only Jesus can undo sin’s destruction and bring us to a place much more wonderful than even Eden was before sin had reared its ugly head.   Ron

Questions? E-Mail me at knowingtheway1@gmail.com 

What About Heaven?

I’ve been more than a little surprised about the increased interest lately regarding Heaven.  It seems that more people believe in it than did in previous years, according to a recent poll. Add to that a surprisingly high amount of people believe they are going there. This dangerous lack of understanding (on the part of many) needs to be addressed. For unsaved people, there is the assumption that if their good deeds outweigh their bad deeds, they will be in Heaven. Only those who know Jesus as Savior and Lord will actually spend “forever” in that glorious place. Jesus spoke about this in John 7:13-14: “Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be that go in thereat; because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.” What is the narrow way? Jesus told us in John 14:6. He authoritatively stated: “….I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by Me.” There are those who will disagree with this. They won’t disagree on the Day of Judgment! However, at that point, their refusal to come God’s way leaves them lost forever. It’s a fatal mistake to question the crystal clear truth spoken by the Son of God! For those who will come God’s way, they are in for a future so blessed that words are woefully inadequate to do more than give us some hints of possibilities. God willing, we will try to draw some insights from Scripture over the next couple or so days. Charles H. Gabriel in the second stanza of his hymn: “O That Will Be Glory,” captures what makes Heaven, Heaven: “When by the gift of His infinite grace, I am accorded in Heaven a place, just to be there and to look on His face will through the ages be glory for me! O that will be glory for me, glory for me, glory for me; when by His grace I shall look on His face, that will be glory, be glory for me!” Selah! All the blessings of Heaven pale in comparison to beholding the King in His beauty, the beauty of holiness.   Ron

Questions? E-Mail me at knowingtheway1@gmail.com 

His Life Within!

His life within! How easy to say that; how rarely do we really grasp the wonder of it! The God of all, alive in us! And when He is alive in us, we are alive in Him! This goes way beyond just knowing about Him! Jesus actually inhabits our humanity, if we are born again! His sanctifying Presence is at work in our inner being, shaping us into His image and preparing us for Heaven. It is the Holy Spirit teaching, training, correcting, guiding, motivating, using and empowering us. How does He do that? By setting the living Word of God on fire in our minds and hearts. Only God’s Spirit can take the paper, ink and print and impart the voice of God into our Spiritual hearing. That voice is heard when the Bible stops being just a great book and is acted upon. Through teaching and preaching in the power of God, we receive discernment. When we apply and obey what we have come to understand, God’s voice is heard! His Presence within brings peace, joy, comfort, confidence, love, communion, purpose, protection, strength, anticipation and much more. Paul in Galatians 2:20 explains our glorious experience: “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.” Anne S. Murphy expresses this wonder in her hymn, “Constantly Abiding,” She testified: “There’s a peace in my heart that the world never gave, a peace it can not take away; tho’ the trials of life may surround like a cloud, I’ve a peace that has come there to stay! All the world seemed to sing of a Savior and King, when peace sweetly came to my heart; troubles all fled away and my night turned to day, blessed Jesus, how glorious Thou art! This treasure I have in a temple of clay, while here on His footstool I roam: but He’s coming to take me some glorious day, over there to my Heavenly home! Constantly abiding, Jesus is mine; constantly abiding, rapture divine; He never leaves me lonely, whispers, O so kind: “I will never leave thee” Jesus is mine! Selah! Let Him cleanse and purify His temple, so that His glory shines through and shows others His Life within!  Ron

Questions? E-Mail me at knowingtheway1@gmail.com 

Encyclopedia of Christian Knowledge

I knew a young man once who could reel off baseball facts and statistics from current ones to years back. He had a truly photographic knowledge of the game of baseball. It was impressive! He hadn’t played baseball; he didn’t know any players personally; he hadn’t been to a ballpark. He had all kinds of information but no personal experience. Thinking about him, someone might wonder what good was all that knowledge with no experience. The most the kid could do was to impress people with his knowledge. If he could play the game and succeed, the knowledge would be useful. He was only an encyclopedia of baseball knowledge. There are people who can tell you most any of the facts of the Gospel; they can recite the basic doctrines and even defend them. They can refute error. They might even be able to share these facts with someone and that person might act on those facts and come to Christ. It is possible to be an encyclopedia of Christian knowledge and not know Christ as Savior and Lord. In Philippians 3:10, Paul expressed his personal and passionate desire in these words: “That I may know Him.” He did not say: “That I may know about Him.” He knew about Jesus; that is very important! Knowing the facts, he wanted to know Him personally, become deeply involved with Him, and experience His power in his life. Spiritual Knowledge gives us Truth, information and understanding. Only when we act on the facts does it become personally experiential. My deep concern is for those who are basing their salvation on knowing facts without knowing Jesus, except in an intellectual way only. Anna Olander’s hymn, “If I Gained the World,” gives us pause to consider the consequences of settling for less than a personal experience of the Savior. This is how she put it: “Had I wealth and love in fullest measure, and a name revered both far and near, yet no hope beyond, no harbor waiting where my storm-tossed vessel I could steer — If I gained the world, but lost the Savior who endured the cross and died for me, could then all the world afford a refuge whither in my anguish I might flee? O what emptiness without the Savior mid the sins and sorrows here below! And eternity how dark without Him — only night and tears and endless woe! What tho I might live without the Savior, when I come to die, how would it be? O to face the valley’s gloom without Him! And without Him all eternity? Selah! Knowledge alone will not cut it; knowing Him personally will!  Ron

Questions? E-Mail me at knowingtheway1@gmail.com 

Grab a Spade and Start Digging!

You find a genuine treasure map. You’ve had it checked by an expert and it’s verified as being authentic. You get a spade and go to the site and look over the ground and go home. Right? I don’t think so! I’ve a hunch you would dig and dig until you unearth the treasure. Since the map is authentic, the treasure is likely to be substantial and worth the time, effort and expense. That raises a question! If Spiritual treasure means more to us than all earthly riches, how come we don’t take our “spade” (tools) and dig, dig, dig? Does our failure to do so suggest that earthly things mean more to us than God’s priceless treasures? Listen to God’s guide to true riches: “My son, if thou wilt receive My Words, and hide My commandments with thee; so that thou incline thine ear unto wisdom, and apply thine heart to understanding; yea, if thou criest after knowledge, and liftest up thy voice for understanding; if thou sleekest her as silver, and searchest for her as for hid treasures; then shalt thou understand the fear of the LORD, and find the knowledge of God. For the LORD giveth wisdom: out of His mouth cometh knowledge and understanding” (Proverbs 2:1-6). John Newton gave us the hymn: “Glorious Things of Thee Are  Spoken.” In the fourth stanza, he speaks of true treasure: “Savior, since of Zion’s city I thro grace a member am, let the world deride or pity, I will glory in Thy name. Fading is the world’s best pleasure, all it’s boasted pomp and show; solid joys and lasting treasures none but Zion’s children know.” Selah! Earthly treasures can be lost, used up, stolen; God’s treasures are inexhaustible forever!   Ron

Questions? E-Mail me at knowingtheway1@gmail.com 

Look Who’s Here!

If we breathe, it is God Who makes it possible. If we touch, taste, smell, hear, see, God has made it available. If we behold beauty, God made that beauty. If we make a living, God gives the strength and understanding. If we love, or are loved, God is the source and giver of love. If we are truly wise, God has trusted us with that wisdom. If we have a good family, God has blessed us. If we have real friends, God has been good to us and we need to be a real friend to others. If we go through great trials, God is giving us an opportunity to trust, to respond properly, to lean on Him. If we have wonderful material possessions (car, home, conveniences, etc), wholesome, entertaining and enjoyable experiences, God is behind them. If we are a blessing to others, God has used us. If we have received Jesus as Lord and Savior, we have become a child of God. We will live in His Presence forever! If we suffer, God can comfort us and use us to comfort others. Much more could be brought to mind. In short: “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights.” (From James 1:17). Wherever we look, whatever we need, if it is truly good, God is here! “For in Him we live, and move, and have our being.” (From Acts 17:28). In the old familiar and well loved hymn, “This Is My Father’s World, Maltbie D. Babcock knew that God is here. Consider these thoughts: “This is my Father’s world, and to my list’ning ears all nature sings, and round me rings the music of the spheres. This is my father’s world! I rest me in the thought of rocks and trees, of skies and seas — His hands the wonders wrought. This is my Father’s world — the birds their carols raise; the morning light, the lily white, declare their Maker’s praise. This is my Father’s World! He shines in all that’s fair; in the rustling grass I hear Him pass — He speaks to me everywhere. This is my father’s world — O let me ne’er forget that tho the wrong seems oft so strong God is the Ruler yet. This is my Father’s world! The battle is not done; Jesus Who died shall be satisfied, and earth and Heaven be one.” Selah! He is here and there is evidence all around; where we see Him most of all is in His Word; if we receive His gift of eternal life, we will see Him face to face!   Ron

Questions? E-Mail me at knowingtheway1@gmail.com