Sunday, October 5, 2014

The Path to Heaven – Part 1

Isaiah 66:1-2 Thus says the Lord: “Heaven is My throne, and earth is My footstool. Where is the house that you will build Me? And where is the place of My rest? For all those things My hand has made, and all those things exist,” says the Lord.

This week, our small group Bible Study entered the final lesson of our “deep dive” investigation into “Life, Death, and Life after Death”. As a redeemed sinner, the Believer is made a Child of God and citizen of the kingdom of Heaven, saved from the righteous wrath of God for our sins and the penalty of eternal damnation in Hell’s lake of fire. A heavy subject, to say the least, but truly illustrates the seriousness of the situation in God’s Plan for Salvation. The problem is that so many people do not know that they are lost and dying on the wide road to destruction (Matthew 7:13-14) and need a Savior. Knowing “the Truth” is what drives us to the “straight and narrow” path that leads to life in Christ, that can joyfully pray with genuine gratitude: “Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven” – Matthew 6:9-10. As the lesson says: “The focus is heaven. This, beloved, is what eternity can hold for our life. Life, beyond death’s door!” It’s beyond our wildest imagination. God made heaven and God is there. Heaven is not here and we are not there … yet.

1 Corinthians 2:9 But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.

Jesus, Himself, gave us the bottom-line crux (The basic, central, or critical point and feature) of it all in John 14:1-6Do not let your hearts be troubled. You have faith in God; have faith also in me. In my Father’s house there are many dwelling places. If there were not, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back again and take you to myself, so that where I am you also may be. Where I am going you know the way.” Thomas said to him, “Master, we do not know where you are going; how can we know the way?” Jesus said to him, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”  In Acts 1:9-11, at His Ascension into heaven, Angels confirmed the Lord promise; “And after He (Jesus) had said these things, He was lifted up while they were looking on, and a cloud received Him out of their sight. And as they were gazing intently into the sky while He was going, behold, two men in white clothing stood beside them. They also said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into the sky? This Jesus, who has been taken up from you into heaven, will come in just the same way as you have watched Him go into heaven.” Acts 4:12 confirms that “Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to mankind by which we must be saved.” Heaven is our Home.

1 Peter 1:3-5  Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the  resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to obtain an inheritance which is imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, who are protected by the power of God through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.

Let's finish this message from our lesson on Heaven tomorrow.
In Christ, Brian

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