Believers Receive An Eternal Inheritance In Heaven
1 Peter 1:3-5“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fadekept in heaven for you, who through faith are shielded by God’s power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time.”
God Has Power Over Death
Over the course of Jesus ministry, He impacted many lives and made a number of close friends. Of these friends were Mary, Martha, and their brother Lazarus. They lived in the town of Bethany, just outside Jerusalem.
One day, Lazarus got sick. Mary and Martha immediately sent word to Jesus, knowing he could help. But instead of coming right away, as soon as He received the message, Jesus chose to remain where he was for two more days. The disciples were concerned, but Jesus told them:
Our friend Lazarus sleeps, but I go that I may wake him up.
Then His disciples said, Lord, if he sleeps he will get well. However, Jesus was actually talking about his death. But they thought He was speaking about resting in sleep.
Then Jesus said to them plainly,
Lazarus is dead. And I am glad for your sakes that I was not there, that you may believe. Nevertheless let us go to him .
When Jesus and His disciples got to Bethany, Martha was the first to meet them. She ran to Jesus, crying, saying that if He had been there, Lazarus wouldnt have died. It was then that Jesus said some of the most comforting words found in the Bible.
Jesus said to her,
Your brother will rise again.
Martha said to him, I know that he will rise again in the resurrection on the last day.
Jesus said to her, I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die .
The Covenant Was Maintained By Keeping The Circumcision
The covenant of God was maintained by keeping the circumcision. Everyone, who was circumcised was set apart by God, from the pagan people and belonged to Him. They were His people and therefore they would gain all the privileges of Jewish citizenship, which contained the protection and provisions of God.
God would protect His people and provide for His people. While Gods people would keep His commandments and His statutes and live according to His will. These were the conditions.
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What Did Paul Mean By Circumcision
Having lost weight through circumcision, Paul sought to put a different value on circumcision. He said: Men should become circumcisions rather than physical ones. Likewise, 1 Corban wrote: Is any man called becoming? when referring to the practice. As a courtesy, let him be free to go wherever he pleases.
Spiritual Death Is Separation From God
Its easy to read modern definitions for words and situations into biblical text. This often occurs when someone thinks of death. To our way of thinking, death means the end of something and the complete cessation of life. In Scripture, however, death primarily means separationseparation of mans spirit from his body and of man from God.
For example, Scripture reveals our physical bodies will eventually cease to function and will begin to decay. Our souls, however, are eternal. Therefore, once brain death occurs, our bodies and souls separate. Similarly, spiritual death, caused by sin, separates man from His Creator. When we receive eternal life, our relationship with God is restored. Those who dont trust in God for salvation, however, remain in deatheternally separated from Him and therefore all the love and goodness and righteousness that stems from Him. This is hell.
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Eventually God Will Put An End To Death
Revelation 21:1-4“Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away … I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God … And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”
Jesus Prepares A Special Place For Believers In Heaven
John 14:1-3“Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God trust also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms 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.”
Peter Attacks Circumcision And The Law Ofmoses
In Acts 15, there is an account of people comingfrom Judea and pushing circumcision on non-Jewish Christians.Imagine how much consternation this would cause, 1,800 years beforethe invention of aseptic surgery! Even today circumcisions canbecome infected. Imagine what it was like then!
This is what Peter said:
ââMy brothers, you know that â¦ God made a choiceâ¦ that I should be the one through whom the Gentiles would hearthe message of the good news and become believers. And God, whoknows the human heart, testified to them by giving them the HolySpirit, just as he did to us and in cleaning their hearts by faithhe has made no distinction between them and us. Now therefore whyare you putting God to the test by placing on the neck of thedisciples a yoke that neither our ancestors nor we have been ableto bear? On the contrary we believe that we will be saved throughthe grace of the Lord Jesus just as they will.ââ
He called circumcision and the Mosaic law anâunbearable yokeâ. Why? The Torah says that every maleshall be circumcised on the eighth day. As we have seen, laterdevelopments of the law modified this somewhat.16 This is evidence that circumcision beforeaseptic surgery was a risky business. How could parents bring ababy into the world only to risk losing him to circumcision? Peter,as a married man . would be in a position to appreciatethis keenly, and it might help account for the emotional tone ofhis comment.
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Because Jesus Overcame Death So Will We
God originally created the world free of sin and death. When mankind rebelled against Him , we broke our relationship with God the Father and the curse of death and sin began to rule. When Jesus died on the cross for our sins, He broke the power of both, and since we have been united with Him in His death through faith, we will also be raised to life as He was .
Jesus demonstrated this unchanging truth when He stepped out of the tomb, alive. This means, though our physical bodies will cease to function, our souls will immediately enter into Gods presence. Later, when Christ returns, our souls will be reunited with our physical, then glorified bodies, which will be raised from the dead.1
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Whats After Death Why Do We Need To Sleep
The death that humanity experiences at the end of their earthly lives is not the end of humanitys story. The dead may not be in heaven looking down at us, but they will rise again when Jesus returns to earth at His Second Coming.
Until then, everyone sleeps.
Death has been addressed many times throughout the Bible, and always with a sense of assurance. Solomon had no doubts about what happened after death when he wrote the living know that they will die, but the dead know nothing .
The writers who chronicled the books of 1 and 2 Kings never doubted that the rulers of Israel rested with their ancestors after they died. The teachings of Scripture were clear to them.
But the Bible talks about another sort of assurance as well. An assurance of something after death.
Job knew about it . So did the prophet Daniel . Its the same assurance Jesus gave to Martha before they went to Lazarus tomb. He told her that her brother would rise again.
Yes, said Martha. I know that he will rise again in the resurrection on the last day.
And Jesus said to her, I am the resurrection and the life.
That is the assurance that Christ gives us, the promise of life beyond the power of death. A life we can only reach through him. As he said to the Jews during his ministry:
Most assuredly, I say to you, he who hears My word and believes in Him who sent Me has everlasting life, and shall not come into judgment, but has passed from death into life.
This Isnt Very Comforting
Right about now, you may feel a bit beat up or perhaps offended that God views you as a sinner. We get that. These truths are tough to process on a good day, even harder when youre dealing with grief. Quite frankly, thats why its easier to rest in the illusion that sources outside our control are the cause of the problems we face.
But if were honest, we have to admit that murderers, terrorists, and white-collar criminals arent the only ones causing suffering in this world. Think about it:
- Have you ever lost your temper and said things that hurt someone?
- Was there a time when you slacked off on your responsibilities and caused work to pile up on someone else?
- Have you ever held a grudge that caused you to withhold kindness?
- Was there ever a time when you took pleasure in sharing gossip that hurt someones reputation?
And while those acts are small when compared to the big evils of the world, anything you do that God doesnt like is sin, and the punishment is eternal suffering. Thats why its critical to share these truths with you now, even in the midst of your grief. Your eternal destiny is at stake.
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What Does The Bible Say About Circumcision
For the Jews, circumcision was more than a rite of passage. For them it was a sign of their covenant with God. Circumcision marked them as the chosen people Gods special treasure. Others in their time practiced circumcision, particularly in Egypt. But it seems that only for Israel did it have the significance of marking a covenant relationship with their national deity.
Circumcision marked a covenant established with Abraham. Shortly before Isaac was born, God directed Abraham to circumcise all the males of his household, including himself, Ishmael, and his servants . This was to be an ongoing practice. Every male born into his family was to be circumcised on the eighth day after his birth.
During their stay in Egypt, the Jews became deeply immersed in Egyptian culture and religious practice . And along with that, the practice of circumcision likely fell by the wayside. But the practice was renewed on the banks of the Jordan shortly after Israel crossed the river but before beginning the conquest of Canaan .
Throughout the remainder of the Old Testament you will frequently see the division between the circumcised and the uncircumcised. This is essentially the division between the covenant people and outsiders. Or between Jew and Gentile.
Why Do Africans Do Circumcision
History. Circumcision is prevalent among 92% of men in North Africa and around 62% in Sub-Saharan Africa. In western and northern parts of Africa it is mainly performed for religious reasons, whereas in southern parts of Africa it rarely performed in neonates, instead being a rite of passage into manhood.
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Whats Up With The Timing Why Would God Take One Of His Most Prolific Players Out Of The Game While He Was Still So Young
I know its hard to understand why God chooses to extend some lives while seeming to cut others short. The only answer I have for this is to say we have to find a way to put things into perspective. To see things–not from our own grief-riddled opinions–but from the lens of the reality we exist in. We need to focus on the truths we know:
1) God is all-knowing: He sees things we cannot see. He knows the big picture. We are finite beings who cant even know what the next hour of our life will bring us. But God existed before time began. He time and brought us into being. He knows how each of our lives’s threads weave together to create a marvelous tapestry.
Colossians 1:17 He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together.
Psalm 100:3 Know that the Lord Himself is God It is He who has made us, and not we ourselves We are His people and the sheep of His pasture.
2) God is all-loving: For reasons I cannot even begin to comprehend–God loves us. He has proven time and time again that He loves us. He even went so far as to suffer and die on the cross for us.
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I know it can be extremely hard to do, but since God knows things about the worlds timeline that we dont have any clue about–and since we know beyond a shadow of a doubt that He loves us–we have to trust that God knows what He is doing and has our best interests at heart, even when life hurts.
This is when people come across a pitfall:
What Does The Bible Say About Extreme Fear And Anxiety
Fear not, for I am with you be not dismayed, for I am your God I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.Do not fear the king of Babylon, of whom you are afraid. Do not fear him, declares the LORD, for I am with you, to save you and to deliver you from his hand.
Recognizing The Warning Signs Of Suicide
The following signs may mean someone is at risk for suicide. The risk of suicide is greater if a behavior is new or has increased and if it seems related to a painful event, loss, or change. All threats or talk of suicide should be taken seriously. If you or someone you know exhibits any of these signs, seek help as soon as possible.
- Talking about wanting to die or to kill themselves
- Looking for a way to kill themselves, like searching online or buying a gun
- Talking about feeling hopeless or having no reason to live
- Talking about feeling trapped or in unbearable pain
- Talking about being a burden to others
- Increasing the use of alcohol or drugs
- Acting anxious or agitated behaving recklessly
- Sleeping too little or too much
- Withdrawing or isolating themselves
- Showing rage or talking about seeking revenge
- Extreme mood swings
We Dont Have To Die Alone
Once we trust in Christ for salvation, our relationship with Him is restored, never to be broken again. He makes His home within us, surrounds us, walks beside us, and we become one with Him. Therefore, from that moment on, we are never and will never be alone. In Christ, Gods presence surrounds us completely.
This was the message Jesus was trying to convey to His disciples on the night before He died. will give you another advocate to help you and be with you foreverthe Spirit of truth which is the Holy Spirit. You know Him, for He lives with you and will be in you. I will not leave you as orphans I will come to you. On that day, you will realize that I am in My Father, and you are in Me, and I am in you .
Though others, perhaps even those closest to us, may abandon or reject us, Christ never will. When our time on earth ends, Hell usher us into paradise where well experience His love and presence at a depth unimaginable to our finite minds.
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When Paul Spoke Against Circumcising Anduncircumcising
In 1 Corinthians, 22 Paul appears quite even-handed aboutcircumcision, telling people, whether circumcised or not, to remainas they are and not to try to change their circumcision status. Hedismisses circumcision as nothing.
âThis is my rule in all the churches. Was anyoneat the time of his call already circumcised? Let him not seek toremove the marks of circumcision. Was anyone at the time of hiscall uncircumcised? Let him not seek circumcision. Circumcision isnothing, and uncircumcision is nothing but obeying thecommandments of God is everything. Let each of you remain in thecondition in which you were called.â
Slaves And Strangers Were Circumcised In The Flesh
But not only the male children from the seed of Abraham were circumcised on the eighth day. The male slaves and strangers also had to be circumcised . They were circumcised so that they would be part of the covenant and could enjoy the privileges of Jewish citizenship.
When a male child was uncircumcised, he didnt belong to Gods people and wasnt under His protection. We see this in the life of Moses. When Moses was on his way with his wife and son, the Lord tried to kill his son. As soon as the son of Moses was circumcised, the Lord left him alone.
And it came to pass by the way in the inn, that the Lord met him, and sought to kill him. Then Zipporah took a sharp stone, and cut off the foreskin of her son, and cast it at his feet, and said, Surely a bloody husband art thou to me. So he let him go: then she said, A bloody husband thou art, because of the circumcision
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