Salvation, Fruit, and Prosperity

"God, please help me write this paper. Thank You, Lord, for answering this outward display of my heart’s desire, and furthermore for answering all of my prayers." Diving into this paper, I am presented with a unique opportunity to accomplish two great tasks simultaneously. The undertaking is to obtain an associates degree showing my professors that I am capable of writing a final paper for the purpose of spreading the gospel of Christ. And the second task is to connect with my boss in his heart. I have spent the last six months with him on my first deployment overseas, and I asked him to help edit this paper because of his English degree he already holds.

Seeing the circumstances, I ask myself, self, how is it that God orchestrates such a wonderful opportunity for me to accomplish these objectives together, with hopefully some form of creative voice and academic quality fused together to establish a genuine connection to two unlike audiences? The first audience is the evaluators at the Sure Foundation who will empower me with a beginning degree to further His glory. The second audience, and equally important, is my boss. I want to show him God's love, and to fertilize the soil in his mind for the seed of God's Word with the love He has for everyone of His creatures just as He publicly displayed it on His cross two thousand years ago.

God reconciled by Jesus' blood those whom He called beforehand, whom only He foreknew. “For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that he might be the first born among many brothers,” Romans 8:29. God demonstrated His unfathomably rich love and deep grace by dying in our place on the cross. It is this grace that is completely undeserved and can never be earned by works so no one will be able to boast in His presence. “For it is by grace you have been saved, though 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.

I understand that this is not the usual approach to the way a paper should be written, and this is not the way that I would normally attack this type of assignment; however, I felt a change of heart before I started. Taking a break from the outline I wrote prior to beginning this final thesis, I sat down with SSG Will Borego, my editor, and listened as he shared a couple of well-written essays from his classes, one exploratory paper and one textbook style structured essay. He explained how connecting with the audience on a personal level can be just as important as, if not more than, how a paper sounds with a predetermined set of conforming values to satisfy the objective alone. I will now attempt to conquer the unnatural act of stepping off the boat like Peter did in faith in order to take the hand of Him who will accomplish it for me.

From the material which has been a blessing and an answer to prayers, the subjects I have chosen to review are: the regeneration of the human spirit, the fruits of the Spirit, and health and wealth. I additionally studied and selected these lessons for a couple of reasons. The first reason is that I enjoyed them and knew it would not be difficult to further discuss the content presented. The second, I am thirsty to do what I am called to do, because I am a disciple of Christ. I am commissioned, by Jesus, to share the Gospel. In doing so, God’s love and glory can be enjoyed by everyone in my environmental niche, not only for this short life time, but more importantly, to an extent that words never will be able to describe, for all eternity. Because eternity is a word that holds a profound amount of weight to understand, our minds dismiss it quickly. They are not strong enough to think about it for even a few minutes.

The regeneration of the human spirit by the Word of God is the reason Christ came and died on the cross. This occurs when a person asks for the forgiveness of their sins against God, and receives it by putting their faith in the shed blood of Christ on the Cross. Everyone is, whether they are aware of the fact or not, a sinner. "As it is written: 'There is no one righteous, not even one; there is no one who understands, no one who seeks God. All have turned away, they have together become worthless; there is no one who does good, not even one,'" Romans 3:10-12.

Upon receiving the grace of God by faith, the Spirit of God or the Holy Spirit then comes and gives new life to the person's spirit with the seed of God's Word. 1 Peter 1:23 says that these people are, "Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible by the Word of God which liveth and abideth forever." Being born again, which comes by faith in Christ’s blood, must take place in order to restore the relationship that originally existed between God and man.

Man in his spirit had communion with God, or perfect intimacy and oneness with God that did not exclude freewill, until man's fall. The fall was a result of man disobeying the command of God to not eat of the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil. God said that man would die when he ate of this fruit. Genesis 2:17 shows this, "..., thou shalt not eat of it; for in the day that thou eatest thereof, thou shalt surely die." This death, or separation from God’s Spirit, was a spiritual death and communion with God was cut off. "And the eyes of both of them were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves aprons," Genesis 3:7. This spiritual death was eventually followed by a physical death hundreds of years later. Consequently, death spread throughout the entire human species' existence. "Wherefore as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin, and so death passed upon all men, for all have sinned," Romans 5:12.

We are born into this world with two sentences of death over us. One, we are born spiritually dead, or cut off from communion with God forever, and two, we are going physically die just like Adam and Eve. But God knew this was going to happen and prepared the way for the reconciliation of man with Himself. This was accomplished through the death of Christ, God's Son, who is God. Because of God’s loving-kindness and grace towards man, God decided to make a worthy substitionary sacrifice that only He could provide, so as to cover the sin of man and the death sentence it carried. This allowed man to be blameless before and in the presence of God. This is accomplished through Jesus, the only mediator between God and man. John 3:16 says, "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life."

To further understand the process of the regeneration of the human spirit by the Word of God, it is crucial that I discuss what it means to be 'born again!' Upon accepting Christ as your Lord and Savior, which includes confessing with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believing in your heart that God did raise Him from the dead (Romans 10:9-11), the Holy Spirit consummates this experience and process by taking up residence in your spirit, making you, 'born again.'

I will testify to this as true. When I was ten, I accepted Christ and became a born-again believer in Christ. My dad explained to me what was to come about the Rapture and Tribulation and I wanted to 'get in' on the rapture and not have to suffer through God's judgments upon man in the Tribulation, naturally (see the Revelation to John). He said all I had to do was accept Christ as my Savior. I prayed earnestly to God, confessing my sins, and receiving forgiveness from my God who died for me. The Spirit of the Lord then came upon me and took up a new home in my spirit.

Truthfully, the best I can describe what happened would be to say I felt filled with an intense fullness of love in my chest and whole body, which included a deep inward peace of a Presence that just came into the core of my being that very moment. I felt and was over-filled with joy, and rejoiced at the fact I was now going to spend eternity with God because I accepted the ransom paid for me by Christ on the cross. There was this overflowing 'fire,' filling the hole I was not aware that existed, of burning inside of me. This fire of peace and fulfillment was not there before I received God the minute before. “And you were also included in Christ when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation. Having believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit,” Ephesians 1:13. I ran about our house the rest of the night exclaiming very simply, because I was ten years old, about how great I felt inside. I still feel this way today and everyday because I feel God's wonderful Presence within me, and He will never leave me.

Now, it is important that I mention that this experience is specific only to me personally, as I have talked with other Christians who did not feel God's Spirit dwelling inside them until later. For me, it was immediate upon saying in my mind to God, or praying, the 'sinner's prayer' or the 'prayer of salvation.' This is what happened to me, which confirms what is already stated in Scripture about the Holy Spirit, Who is also known as the Counselor or Comforter. John 14:16 says, "And I will pray the Father, and He shall give you another Comforter, that He may abide with you forever," and John 14:26, "But the Comforter, (which is) the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, He shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whosoever I have said unto you." The Spirit only confesses and gives this peace in me in the recognition that Jesus is Lord, (I should know, since He lives in me and does not lie.)

Jesus also made mention to the fact the we must be born again when He was talking with Nicodemus in John 3:3, "Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, except a man be born of water and of the Spirit he cannot enter into the kingdom of heaven." The Scripture of John 3:5 also supports what Jesus says to Nicodemus. Being born of water has already happened the moment you are born into this world. Being born of the Spirit, or born-again, happens the moment you accept Christ as your Savior for the forgiveness of your inherited death sentence. The phrase 'born-again' is not something Christians thought up in order to silently justify a condescending attitude towards those who are not born again, or born of the Spirit. This phrase has roots in the ancient Greek language coming from the Greek words 'gennao' and 'anothen,' meaning 'born from above.' 2 Corinthians 5:17 says, "Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature, old things are passed away, behold, all things are become new." Naturally, those who have received this unwarranted gift of the Lord's grace have only the desire to share it with those who have not received it, because without it, they are lost forever. We are new creatures upon the new birth of being born again by the incorruptible seed of the Word of God.

This is why Jesus said you must be born again to see the kingdom of God. If you are not born twice, then you will die twice. You will die one physical death and also a second death, which is eternal death and separation from God. This is truly something horrific beyond all description, and what could be imagined. Revelation describes what happens with the second death, also known as the lake of fire, in Chapter 20 verses 13 through 15, "And the sea gave up the dead which were in it, and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works. And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire." This is the place where you are separated forever from God; this is where God is not. This is the absence of God.

The lake of fire is everything that heaven is not. This is why Christ came, died and rose again; to conquer death and to save people from the eternal separation from Himself! This is why the Bible was authored by God; as a warning ahead of time to save those who still need to accept the grace of Christ. This is why I am writing this paper. This the ultimate end of the devil who is Satan, who deceives those who do not believe in the sacrifice of Christ to save them; stated in Revelation 20:10, "And the devil, who deceived them, was thrown into the lake of burning sulfur, where the beast and the false prophet had been thrown, they will be tormented day and night forever and ever."

Every time I read those scriptures, I think about what the horrors of eternity away from God will be like for those who choose to reject God's FREE grace! It makes me thankful for what Jesus suffered on the cross so this would not be the fate of me and those who have chosen to trust in Christ’s sinless blood to wash away their sins. This is a truly loving God. We understand now why it is necessary to accept God’s undeserved gift of His Son’s death and resurrection and how much He had to suffer to purchase our pardon. We understand that by rejecting His grace, we leave God no option other than to remove our unwashed and sinful person from His presence forever.

An illustration must be painted so we can see of the beauty of a life filled by the Spirit of God God begins to create a new nature in the person, His Son’s perfect nature, and he begins to produce what are known as the fruits of the Spirit. These Spiritual fruits are only produced by the people who are not in the bondage of slavery to Satan anymore, those who have allowed God to cleanse their sins and regenerate their inner man, or spirit. The fruits of the Spirit are grown slowly, and mature over time just as normal fruit does. They are only grown when the born again believer continually abides and lives in the rest and peace of God's Spirit and Presence.

Galatians chapter 5 talks about the fruits of the Spirit. The fruits of the Spirit are fruits grown out of love. They are given by God; designed to counteract and replace the hateful works of the flesh. Verses 22 and 23 define the fruits of the Spirit as being, "love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, and temperance: against such there is no law." When these fruits are watered and cared for, being nurtured consistently as a plant should be, so also do these fruits fortify and build up the inner man. Verse 25 says, "If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit."

Walking in the Spirit of God takes a daily remembrance and maintenance of the mindset of repentance. Basically, this means we are to consider ourselves dead and crucified to the flesh and alive in Christ; paralleling the coming resurrection of our natural bodies. We are to live and reckon the unseen fact of have being resurrected as already taken place, which has happened the moment belief and acceptance in Jesus have taken place. This reckoning releases our faith that will grow the fruits along with it. This is a very important facet of releasing the Spirit-filled fruits, because Scripture tells us just as we are alive in the Spirit, so also we need to walk continually in the Spirit. In doing so, we will no longer walk according the hate-filled fleshly works, referenced by Galatians 5:16, "But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desires of the flesh."

I use the word 'hate-filled' because the works of the flesh are rooted in hate, which has roots deep in Satan's prideful hatred of God.

"Now the deeds of flesh are evident, which are: immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, disputes, dissensions, factions, envying, drunkenness, carousing, and things like these, of which I forewarn you, just as I have forewarned you, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God," Galatians 5:19-21.

All other types of worldly and fleshly evil works grow off from these core branches of the works of the flesh. Unfortunately, these are some of the characteristics of those who do not know the Spirit of the Lord. These deeds are the result of the absence of God's Holy Spirit abiding in the heart of man, just as the dark is the absence of the presence of the light.

The cause of both the fruits of the Spirit and the works of the flesh is the ‘seed.’ The ‘seed’ is the beginning place of all forms of life, because the seed contains the necessary genetic information for life to fully grow and develop into maturity. There are two different types of seeds, the incorruptible seed of God's Word, and also the corruptible and prideful seed of the devil. These seeds were mentioned in Genesis, when God is pronouncing the judgment upon the serpent for deceiving the woman. "And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her seed; He shall bruise you on the head, and you shall bruise him on the heel," Genesis 3:15. The seed of the woman is a reference to Christ, Who is the Word made flesh. “The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth,” John 1:14. Also, when Adam and Eve were deceived and sinned against God, the seed of the devil was sown into the heart of man. The Spirit of the Lord departed from them, causing their spiritual death. This prideful seed spread to every person who has ever lived and is living now, and explains why the human species is self-centered.

However, once we are born again, we are born of the incorruptible seed of God, which replaces the corrupt nature of the seed that comes with being human and regenerates the human spirit. Peter describes this in his first letter in chapter 1 verse 23, "Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth forever." In understanding the seeds, let us now examine what happens to each seed when it is sown and grows into maturity. These seeds are sown in our minds by the choices we make and the things we choose to think about. The mind is the soil that the seeds grown up in.

The result of the each seed’s maturity needs to carefully understood, because of the consequences they will produce. God tells us exactly what these results are, "Do not be deceived, God is not mocked, for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption, but he that soweth to the spirit shall of the spirit reap life everlasting," Galatians 6:7-8. The seed is sown and cultivated in the soil of the mind. If weeds of fleshly works were growing up my soil, I would need to immediately pull them out and throw them away. This keeps the soil from becoming overgrown, which would take up the room for the good seed to grow; just like a gardener maintaining a garden. We are the gardeners of our mind and our life.

It is evident in Scripture that a life led by the Spirit of God produces good fruit. Jesus Christ, the Word of God, is careful to mention the fruits in our lives and what kind of tree produces them. The tree is a reference to us and the fruits are what are produced from of us,

"You will know them by their fruits. Grapes are not gathered from thorn bushes nor figs from thistles, are they? So every good tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot produce bad fruit, nor can a bad tree produce good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. So then, you will know them by their fruits," Matthew 7:16-20.

If you had a large property, would you not also cut every thorn bush, poisonous plant, and bad tree to make room for the good ones you wanted? So it is also the same with God. If God wants us to bear good fruit so we will stay planted, would not it be safe to assume also that God desires good upon us and not evil? After all, only God is good, and God created man in His image to be with Him. One of the modern world's current perceptions of God is that He punishes us for the evil things resulting from our inherited sinful nature. This brings me to the last topic of health and wealth.

Throughout modern times, in order to become prosperous and in health, a strong idea of religious suffering has prevailed, which has attached itself to these blessings. People have come to accept that God is responsible for sickness, poverty, emotional stress, accidents, and premature death. They believe that this is His will for their lives, but is it really? Would a good God Who created man to share a perfect relationship with Himself intentionally send evil and dire circumstances and situations upon those He made?

No, God would not. The evil, suffering, and death that some people accept to be from God are the result of the imperfect world that was caused by the fall of man. The fall of man was caused by the serpent, which is the devil. Satan, in the Garden of Eden, tricked Eve into thinking that if she ate of the fruit, she would become ‘like’ God, knowing of both good and evil.

“Now the serpent was more crafty than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said to the woman, ‘Indeed has God said, “You shall not eat from any tree of the garden”?’ The woman said to the serpent, ‘From the fruit of the trees of the garden we may eat; but from the fruit of the tree which is in the middle of the garden, God has said, “You shall not eat from it or touch it, or you will die.”’ The serpent said to the woman, ‘You surely will not die! For God knows that in the day you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.’” Genesis 3:1-5.

It is the fallen nature of man to argue that God is responsible for this. Man will rationalize that since God had made the serpent craftier than any other beast of the field, then He is ultimately responsible for man’s fall. This argument, however, goes against what we already know about free will, which God has given to us. There were two different free wills being exercised during the fall of man. The free will of the serpent to deceive man to disobey God, and also the free will of man put into effect to believe the serpent that God was holding out on him by not allowing him to eat the fruit of the tree of knowledge. The results of these decisions of the will of the serpent and the will of man against God is exactly why evil, suffering, and death exist today, and not because God is responsible for it.

God is responsible, however, for the way of reconciliation with Himself. God wants to have a right standing relationship with us, where sin does not separate us from Him. The only way God could accomplish this was by sending a perfect sacrifice, His Son, to die in our place. Jesus had to die in our place so the righteous judgment of God was executed upon sin. But because Christ had no sin, God raised Him up from the dead. The wrath of God was satisfied against sin by Christ’s death; and because of His sinless state, He was able to make atonement for the sins of the world. Jesus conquered death once and for all when He rose from the grave. God is now able to look upon those who trust in His atonement for their sin on the cross, because the debt of death sin carried has already been paid for by Christ.

Scripture confirms this fact that God has given the good things of eternal life and the forgiveness of sin, accomplished by Christ, to those people who ask for it. "If you then being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give what is good to those who ask him!" Matthew 7:11. So we understand by this scripture that you have to ask God for these good things. This idea that religious works and suffering are necessary for God to bring blessing into our lives and failure to accomplish them will result in evil comes from an Old Testament mentality of good works and the Law This kind of thinking only results in guilt and condemnation that brings forth the acceptance that God is responsible for the evil in our lives. This is dangerous as it leaves the door open for the enemy to come in and steal, kill, and destroy. Jesus talks about how He came to do the opposite, "The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly," John 10:10.

So then, we should not accept evil as coming from God. "Let no one say when he is tempted, 'I am being tempted by God'; for God cannot be tempted by evil, and he himself does not tempt anyone," James 1:13. Here, we can clearly see that God is not responsible for the evil that is obviously present in everyday life; on the contrary, Jesus came to give us eternal life and blessings by believing in Him!

Furthermore, those who believe in Jesus Christ are now under a New Testament covenant made possible only by faith in Christ, where we are made heirs of the Father and joint-heirs with the Son! Romans 8:17 describes this promise, "And if children, heirs also, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with him so that we may also be glorified with him." All the curses were nailed to the cross. Now and forever, all the blessings and the promises of the Old and New Testaments are now ours by faith in Christ, and Colossians 2:14 says, "Having canceled out the certificate of debt consisting of decrees against us, which was hostile to us; and He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross." Galatians 3:14 states that, "in order that in Christ Jesus the blessing of Abraham might come to the Gentiles, so that we would receive the promise of the Spirit through faith." This new covenant is based on faith in the shed blood of Jesus on the cross taking up our place. Everyone who believes this to be true and has confessed it with their mouth has now become a joint-heir of all the blessings and promises of His abundant life.

“That if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation. For the Scripture says, ‘Whoever believes in Him will not be disappointed.’ For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, abounding in riches for all who call on Him; for ‘Whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved,’” Romans 10:9-13.

Our God is a loving and good Father, who chose to make us to have fellowship with Himself for all time; it just got screwed up by man’s disobedience This screwed up sin nature in man will last only for a little while longer in this world. It is no wonder why there is an inherent desire in man to be happy, prosperous, and in good health; it was put there by God. It is interesting to see how people who think and accept that it is the Lord's will for them to be in illness, poor living conditions, and dire circumstances are fighting so hard to make things better for themselves and opposing what they think of as God's will for them. Why? It is because it is not God's will for them to suffer, but to be prosperous and in good health and full of life and joy! This is how God first created man. Somehow, people have bought into this huge lie, from the devil himself that God is at fault for these things. Scripture reinforces this in Hosea 4:7, "My people are destroyed for a lack of knowledge." This false idea of God has allowed people to swallow the hook of fear and guilt and create a negative concept of their life. This is not right. This is not what our Father had planned for us. We know this because Jesus taught us that He came to give life abundantly.

Jesus also taught us how to pray, giving us more insight into the loving nature of a loving God and Father. Jesus taught us to pray like this,

"Our Father in heaven, hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come, Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from evil. (For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen,)" in Matthew 6:9-13.

A little examination of this prayer will show us what God truly wants for us; after all, this is His prayer. Lets think about what He means when He says, "Your kingdom come, Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven." In heaven, there is no sickness, pain, evil, or death. Jesus wants His Father to bring the same characteristics of heavenly living to humanity on the earth, how it was originally created. There is only one reason why these flawed and evil characteristics of life on earth exist. It is a result of the fall of Lucifer, or Satan, and the rebellion of man he caused.

Jesus also prayed, "lead us not into temptation." Jesus is showing us the perfect will here of God as a result of His perfect prayer as it applies to our lives. So, in not being led into temptation, we are led into the absence of it. The absence of temptation brings us back to the point where we did not fall into temptation that led to the separation from an original right standing with Him. Also, He prayed, "deliver us from evil," so in case that the lack of knowledge and wisdom causes one to fall back into sin, we ask God for deliverance from it. Once a person has received the grace of God, their sins past, present, and future were nailed to the cross of Christ. Also, this is asking for deliverance from suffering the persecution of righteousness' sake. Suffering for the association with Christ in the insults and injustice from other people who are not aware of what they are doing, or maybe they are, is what the Lord said would happen to his followers. Any evil is not to be accepted as from the Lord, and the answer is in the prayer of deliverance. So it becomes evident that it is not God's will for us to suffer mistreatment, illness, confusion, pain, fear, and death, but rather that He would lead us away, around, or through these by means of His divine guidance, knowledge and wisdom.

Now we have examined a small area of the oceans of evidence that the Lord God is a good and loving Creator. All Scripture is God's Word, "All Scripture is God-breathed, and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work," 2 Timothy 3:16. God wants us to know that He loves us and made the forgiveness of sins; the reconciliation of the separation from Him possible through His own blood on the cross. He does not want anyone to perish eternally, but rather for all to come to the repentance that will allow God to share His glory with us eternally.

Just think about that for a moment; God died for me! God died for me so I could be with Him forever! There is nothing else that is more important in this life than what your standing is with Jesus before God when your time is up. We did not enter into this world with anything, nor are we going to leave it with anything, so why are temporary materialistic possessions held in such high regard? Could it be because this world and everything in it is passing away and the ruler of this world is doing everything possible to keep people blinded from the glory of God's salvation, obtained only by believing in Jesus? Yes, that is exactly why people do not know what is coming, and coming very soon! Yes, the time is coming when the man of lawlessness is going to rule this world before the true King returns to set things the way they should be.

"For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths," 2 Timothy 4:3-4. This is already commonplace in this modern world system, which will only continue to grow worse as the people who confess Jesus are the only ones who are being made the scapegoats. The time is coming soon when you will not be able to choose anymore. A vote of indecision is a no-vote for Christ. Only those who have faith in Christ will live forever, because His sacrifice has sanctified them once and for all time. "The Father loves the Son and has placed everything in His hands. Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects God's Son will not see life, for God's wrath remains on him," John 3:35-36. Basically, those who choose not to believe in Jesus are saying they do not want to be with God, but rather they want to be by themselves for all eternity. God has no choice here but to give them what they want, so they will be separated from Him forever.

"Father, thank You for helping me write this paper. Thank You for answering this prayer and all the others before I even pray them. Let Your will be done. God, I ask that You would send a conviction upon my friend and let him know that You love him so much You were willing to lay down Your life for him, and that he would be able to see the light of Your truth. Do not allow his heart to be hardened by the deceiver, but let him turn to You so the veil will be removed, and he would choose to accept Your free gift of grace. Thank You, Father, for paying for our freedom with Your own blood. In Your Son's holy and eternal name, Amen."

I hope this paper satisfies the requirements necessary to fulfill this course. I had two things in mind when writing this paper, but one mission; I desire only to share the truth of God's salvation with all people and further His glory. All of creation was made to display His glory. What more can I say? God gets all the credit. He always does and always will; God made it all possible by His loving-kindness.

"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. 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. You know the way to the place where I am going." Thomas said to him, "Lord, we don't know where you are going, so how can we know the way?" Jesus answered, "I am the Way and the Truth and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through me. If you really knew me, you would know my Father as well. From now on, you do know Him and have seen Him." John 14:1-6.