By Dennis Huebshman
Anyone who has followed the posts I have submitted will note I try to always give Bible Book, Chapter and verse to back up any statements made.
For example, when I mention God’s covenant with Abraham, the first Bible reference used is Genesis 12: 1-3. This was an “I will” covenant which means God made solemn promises which He will not break. God told Abram (name hadn’t changed yet) to go out of his home country to a place designated by God. In return, God promised to make a great nation from his offspring and will give blessings to those who honor his people and condemn those who treat them badly. This took place about 4000 years ago and is still in effect today. So are the other covenants with Isaac, Jacob (Israel) and David – the last one about 3000 years ago.
There are some verses I use over and over and with good reason. We learn by repetition. These verses are a constant reminder to me of God’s promises to us that “If we…He will”. This is a conditional covenant. It goes like this: John 3:18; John 14:6 and 1 John 5: 10-12 all say (paraphrased) Jesus is God, and we must accept Him, or the Father will not accept us. To reject Jesus is the same as rejecting God, and we will be separated from Him forever in the Lake of Fire. There is no third option.
There are no other conditions given. This is a free gift, and is ours for the asking. Anything Free is a strange concept to us, but that’s exactly what the Father means. By accepting Jesus, we agree He came to the earth just as the Bible said. Upon reaching age 30 (Luke 3:23) His true ministry began. (He had to be 30 for Him to have credibility in the eyes of the Jewish leaders.) He willingly went to the cross (John 10:17-18) and He was crucified, died and was buried On the third day, He arose and as a result conquered sin and death. To reject this is to say God is a liar which is impossible (Titus 1:2).
Most of those reading this are very familiar with all this because you’ve seen and heard it from many sources many times.
But, what about the person reading for the very first time? What if someone has never really heard about God’s covenants and especially the covenant of the cross? Hopefully, they will get a Bible they can understand – a true version translated from the original scrolls – and will read for themselves to see if what’s presented is really there. My own preference is the English Standard Study Bible (ESV), but New King James, American Standard, NIV, or others are just as good.
Also, it is hoped an interest will be sparked, and the person may start to actually read the Bible on a regular basis. If they do, certain verses they’ve seen or heard of elsewhere will suddenly take on new meaning, and a relationship with the Lord develops. Also, they will begin to understand that when God mentions something, it’s not there to take up space. If something is repeated, it really means it’s important.
A.) In Jeremiah, God said 4 times to not pray for the people because he would not listen (7:16; 11:14; 14:11 and 15:1) He had tried to get their attention, but they stubbornly would not turn to Him so into Babylonian captivity they went.
B.) Joel 2:32; Acts 2:21 and Romans 10:13 all say that whoever calls on the name of the Lord will be saved. This promise started in the Old Testament and continues through today.
C.) Already mentioned John 3:18; John 14:6 and 1 John 5: 10-12, and there are others, but these are the main ones for me. Simple memory clue is Have Jesus – Have the Father. Don’t Have Jesus – Don’t have the Father.
D.) Throughout the epistles of Paul, he tells us we are sinners, can only be saved by Grace not works, and anyone who is saved has eternal life. Romans, Galatians and Ephesians especially amplify this. The rest of his letters (epistles) reinforce this message, and 1 Corinthians and 1 Thessalonians gives us the message of the Rapture, even though that word is not given. The concept is.
Speaking of John 14:6, Jesus is very specific about what the Straight and Narrow is as given in Matthew 7: 13-14. He says, “I am the Way, the Truth and the Life; No One comes to the Father except by Me.” This statement does not leave any room for any other explanation.
Another verse I like to include is Revelation 3:20. Jesus said He’s standing at our door knocking, and if we open it to Him and invite Him in, He will dine with us and we with Him.
The Bible is the inspired word of God through which He used about 40 Holy Spirit led persons to document His words for us. That means we can be assured it’s right and true. There are some man-written books that claim to be the Word of God but have been altered to fit what certain people would have you believe. They will pay dearly for this in time as given in Revelation 22: 13-14.
Jesus gives us two guarantees in John Chapter 8 verses 32 and 36. He promises: “You shall know the truth, and the truth shall set you free.” And, “If the Son therefore sets you free, you are free indeed.” To know the truth, you must first be given it, and the Father has done this in His Love Letter of 66 books. It seems like a monumental task to get through it all, but every journey starts with just one step.
For beginners, I would recommend reading the Book of John in the New Testament first. Then Romans would be a good follow-up. After this, go back to Matthew and read each book through the New Testament and then go to Genesis and read from beginning to end. Before you know it, you will have gone through the entire letter.
You may not get all the way through if the Savior comes to call His Church (All Believers) home in the Rapture. All the signs are here that He is coming soon as there’s no prophecy left that must be fulfilled. If you have accepted Him, you will go to Him in the air as given in 1 Thessalonians 4 and be with Him forever. There you will have hands-on training from the Savior Himself. To say no is to reject Him; to say maybe is to reject Him; to say later is to reject Him. Call on the name of the Lord (today) and you will be saved. (Acts 2:21; Romans 10:13 and Joel 2:32)