In the beginning, God Almighty, created heaven, earth, and all living things. Sometime after creation, the Archangel Lucifer (Satan or the devil) rebelled against the Creator and war broke out among the angels whereby Satan and one third of the angels rebelled against God. As punishment, these angels were cast out of heaven to dwell on the earth. Mankind, Adam and Eve, were part of God’s perfect creation and lived in the Garden of Eden. They were instructed to rule over God’s creation and only were given one restriction: “You may eat freely from every tree of the garden, but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil; for in the day that you eat of it, you will surely die.” (Gen 2:16-17).
Satan, filled with hatred toward God the Creator, pounced on the opportunity to destroy God’s perfect creation preying on mankind’s weakness. Using half-truths (lies) he convinced Eve, just as he did one third of the angels in heaven, that they could become equals to God. He told Eve concerning the tree of knowledge of good and evil, “For God knows that in the day you eat of it, your eyes will be opened and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” (Gen 3:5). Eve believed the lie, ate of the fruit, and sinned. This single act of disobedience separated mankind from God. Although Adam and Eve remained physically alive, they became spiritually dead as would their offspring. Satan had accomplished his goal and would continue to influence mankind with all kinds of sinful behavior.
“Then the LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great upon the earth, and that every inclination of the thoughts of his heart was altogether evil all the time. And the LORD regretted that He had made man on the earth, and it grieved Him in His heart. So the LORD said, “I will blot out man, whom I have created, from the face of the earth—every man and beast and crawling creature and bird of the air—for I am grieved that I have made them” (Genesis 6:1-7). Then God said to Noah, “The end of all living creatures has come before Me, because through them the earth is full of violence. Now behold, I will destroy both them and the earth. Make for yourself an ark of gopher wood. And behold, I will bring floodwaters upon the earth, to destroy every creature under the heavens that has the breath of life. Everything on the earth will perish. But I will establish My covenant with you, and you will enter the ark—you and your sons and your wife and your sons’ wives with you.”
Hence, after this great flooding of the earth everything perished except for the lives of all within the ark. Once the water receded and the ark settled on the earth Noah, his family, and all of the living creatures left the ark to populate a cleansed world. Thus, mankind and all of creation saved on the ark continued to populate the earth. As they grew in number so did mankind’s sinful ways as the spirit of this world, Satan, distorted their thoughts and ways turning them away from God. Pagan religions grew in number as mankind chose to seek other (false) gods or to seek God according to their own manmade teachings and traditions. Many simply forget about God altogether. Once again, all of heaven witnessed the evil and corruption found in mankind caused by a sinful nature and the relentless ploys by the devil and his angels. Man had become self-centered and lovers of this world instead of lovers of the Creator causing the Almighty God to become once again angry toward mankind for their disobedience.
God called out His own people on the earth through Abraham and they became the mighty nation of Israelites. God promised them a great land and eventually that is where they settled and became the nation of Israel. Years later, when a great famine came upon Israel, they reached out to Egypt for relief and settled there in Egypt in the land of Goshen. The nation of Israel had now become strong as a people, yet over time they had forgotten how God had delivered them from famine and hardship many years before. Moreover, the Israelites had learned to live just as the rest of the world lived forsaking the Almighty God almost completely. Just as Satan and his followers had done in the past, they once again caused the eyes of mankind to be fixed on this world and no longer on their creator.
After many years and countless trials, God chose to call His people out of Egypt and back to the Promised Land where they could once again serve Him according to the law He established through Moses. However, the nation of Israel proved just how difficult it was for them to fulfill this law as they were compromised by the sinful nature of their flesh and the continuous plots and ploys of the spirit of this world, Satan and his many followers. Yet, God’s plan of redemption was still in action as He was preparing the way for what the Jews would call their Messiah, a savior, to finally bring all of God’s people, all of mankind for that matter, back into a right relationship with Him. The next part of God’s plan was to foretell His plan to His people through the prophets. However, the question remained of whether or not His people would listen to His messengers as they went out to prepare the way.
Hence, just as the prophets foretold, a child, the Son of God, whose name is Jesus was born in Bethlehem and grew to become a man here on earth. Around the age of 30, Jesus began His ministry to usher in the kingdom of God and fulfill a plan to offer salvation to all of mankind just as God had promised. Over a period of three years, Jesus performed countless miracles casting out many demons and teaching the people the gospel message fulfilling God’s plan for the salvation of mankind. However, the religious leaders of that time (God’s own Israelites) became greatly frustrated by Jesus who was proclaiming a gospel of the coming kingdom that did not align with their own interpretation of the scriptures. Things got so bad that the religious leaders plotted to kill Jesus and in the end, influenced by Satan, were determined to have Him crucified. Satan would not miss this opportunity to end the life of the Messiah to finally foil God’s plan leaving mankind separated from God forevermore.
Jesus was arrested and after a mock trial was eventually sentenced to a death on the cross by the Roman magistrate Pilate. Jesus died on the cross and was buried in a temporary tomb. On the third day, Jesus rose from the dead fulfilling God’s promise in spite of the plots and ploys of Satan. Jesus had now been crucified, died, and was buried just as it was foretold by God through the prophets. This message is the gospel or good news for all of mankind. Jesus, the Lamb of God, was sent to take away the sins of the world. Therefore, eternal life according to God’s plan is now attainable for all of mankind through this gospel. We just need to act upon this plan in order to find salvation. Jesus said that in order to see the kingdom of heaven we must be spiritually reborn. Just as Adam and Eve spiritually died through disobedience, mankind can become spiritually reborn through obedience. Jesus said, “Truly, truly, I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born-again.” “Truly, truly, I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit. Flesh is born of flesh, but spirit is born of the Spirit.
Therefore, we must personally act upon the gospel in order to be born-again. Salvation is a life-changing event whereby spiritual rebirth takes place through faith (total trust) and complete surrender whereby we become a new creation. Once someone becomes a born-again believer he or she is spiritually placed (baptized) into the Body of Christ (The Church). At the same time during this spiritual transformation, they are filled with the Holy Spirit (God) and all of their sins are forgiven through the sacrificial blood of Jesus. This is what Jesus meant when He said, “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit” (Matthew 28:19).
Therefore, how do we gain eternal life (become born-again) and citizenship of heaven? You now know that you are a sinner and that your sin spiritually separates you from God. If you remain in this state, you surely will remain separated from God and experience eternal death as a citizen of this world. God’s loving plan for you is that, through the sacrifice of His son Jesus, you can reconnect with Him through full surrender of your life to receive eternal life and citizenship in heaven. Once you fully surrender all (forsake your life in this world) He will send the promised Holy Spirit to dwell within you baptizing you into His Body. Thus, if you have not made this full surrender then do it right now! Do not let Satan win the battle for your soul. He will tell you that you will be missing so much in this world if you listen to God, which is what he told Eve. Yet, the truth is that he is a liar and does not care about anyone but himself. Give your life to the Lord now before it is too late.
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