Monday, May 22, 2017

Moving Forward to a Position of Perfection - Hebrews 6

Hebrews 5:12-14 & 6:1-2
For though by this time you ought to be teachers (discerning the things of God), you need someone to teach (instill doctrine into) you again the first (origins) principles of the oracles of God; and you have come to need milk and not solid food (nourishment). For everyone who partakes only of milk is unskilled in the word of righteousness, for he is a babe. But solid food belongs to those who are of full age, that is, those who by reason of habit have their understanding exercised to the advantage of discerning not only good, but evil.

Therefore, moving away from the beginning origins of the words and teachings of Christ, let us endure and move forward to a position of perfection; not throwing to the ground (discarding what we have learned) to repeat the principles of truth that are: repentance from dead works and a position of faith with God; of the teachings of baptisms; and of laying on of hands; and of resurrection of the dead; and of eternal judgment.

For most of my life, I never got past the principle teachings of Christ because I never understood it. My ‘Christian’ life was always in shambles, never truly knowing what Christianity was—an intimate relationship with the Father, not a religion. But I was so caught up in religion, I never had a relationship. Yes, I knew of God…but never trusted Him or came close to Him to even really experience Him as a true Loving Father. And yes, I was aware of the Holy Spirit in my life…hearing Him and seeing Him be an influence in my life, but not letting Him fully into my life, into my spirit. And yes, I knew about Jesus and Him dying for me and forgiving me, but I never understood fully what that meant. Everything about my religious Christian life was chaos. I was never at peace, rest, or experiencing the Abundant Life He died and gave to me.

So when did this change? When I finally came to the end of my own ability to live the so-called ‘Christian way of life’. One that, up until this point, I felt I had to achieve through my own ability. And from that ability came fear, control, lack, strife, self-condemnation, failure at perfection, and a religious fa├žade that hid my true “disappointed” nature.

The fruit of my religious life created the ultimate failure to me. And on the floor in my loft, I wept and ached from my heart to the Lord. And when I was ready to just let Him kill me for my wrongs, He poured out something I never experienced before: His Agape Love of Mercy. And what I did not know then, I have come to see as a changing point in my relationship with Him. Because that moment where I experienced what I did not expect, gave me question to what I thought I knew. This I feel happened to Paul on a greater level.

Acts 9:3-6
As he journeyed he came near Damascus, and suddenly a light shone around him from heaven. Then he fell to the ground, and heard a voice saying to him, “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me?” And he said, “Who are You, Lord?” Then the Lord said, “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting. It is hard for you to kick against the goads (why are you resisting Me).” So he, trembling and astonished, said, “Lord, what do You want me to do?” Then the Lord said to him, “Arise and go into the city, and you will be told what you must do.”

As the ‘Pharisee of Pharisees”, Paul was well aware of God and what consequences there were to those who had disobeyed Him in Israel’s past. So, I can imagine that when Paul encountered the Lord and Him saying to him that, “you are persecuting Me”, there was a great expectation on Paul’s heart that He was about to die. Hence why he was both trembling in fear and astonished (the same astonishment the disciples had at what Jesus said or did—Mark 10:32). Paul trembled in fear, but was astonished at His Mercy. It took someone like Paul to now start to completely change from the self-righteousness he thought he had in the Law, to establishing for himself a new understanding of the Lord.
And so did I.

I had to establish in my heart all that Christ Jesus did; and did not only do for me, but for all of humanity. I had to take all Jesus said, understand what it meant, and then use that as my starting point to building a new Foundation—that being the Rock of Jesus, not the sand of my own ‘intelligence’. I had to let go of alot, and accept (receive) much more.

Repentance from Dead Works

All my life, growing up in a Christian religion, I was taught, nurtured, and disciplined into a life focused on protecting self. Not all was intentional, as having an abusive dad created a nature of protection, perfection, and isolation. Not knowing the reasons why my dad would get mad (because of youthful ignorance), the form of self-protection that developed was one that tried to control the situation that really wasn’t controllable. Since I could not change the situation, I tried to control anything I did to avoid his punishment. Thus, I learned not to speak up (closing off), disregarding emotions (shutting off), and did all I could to not trigger anything (perfectionism). Add on top of this was a church that mimicked this type of behaviour. Thus, I began to see God just as my dad on earth—loving, yet angry: confused.

Now my “works” that were towards my dad became “works” towards God. I struggled to not sin in any fashion—thus perfectionism. I also kept my distance from God emotionally—I could not trust Him, just like I could not trust my dad. And eventually I just didn’t want to speak to Him—and why would God speak to me. In my own eyes I was just a failure at living a so-called “Christian life”; so much so, that all I began to expect from Him was anger. But I still tried to keep up my “good works” in an attempt to not only please Him, but make Him proud of me for trying so diligently. If my attempts failed, I made sure to punish myself before He did. I did all I could to live a “righteous” life, not realizing Christ lived and died that life FOR me—for all of us.

And when I understood the Truth that the life I live (that anyone lives—believer or not) has been made Righteous through Christ, it began to set me free from self-works of righteousness. No longer did I need to try and achieve something that Christ already achieved from me.

Romans 3:20-24
Therefore, by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin.  But at this very moment, the righteousness of God without the law is made actual and plainly recognized, affirmed by the law and the prophets; moreover, the righteousness of God by the faith of Jesus Christ is unto all and upon all them that believe (for there is no distinction between believers and non-believers; for everyone has sinned and come short of the glory of God); having been justified (declared righteous) freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus.

What I was trying to do out of my own ability (my fleshly ability) to uphold the Law, I never needed to do. All that living by the Law did for me was give me a knowledge of what sin was and strengthen sin (1 Corinthians 15:56) in my life where I could no longer resist it out of fear. Fear never keeps a person from doing something, only Agape Love can. I lived a life of fear, not of Love. Yet, unknowingly, this was my attempt at self-righteousness: dead works.

Anything I do that is an attempt (consciously or sub-consciously) at self-righteousness is dead works. This has many forms, but these are the ones I’ve come to recognize: trying to do something to avoid Gods wrath (which He does not do); trying to do something to get God to do something for me…whether prayer, food / material fasting, self-punishment, prayer, ungodly humility, bartering, or begging Him; trying to “get more faith”; or a reward-type works, thinking that I deserved something from Him because I did good (I didn’t do something this week that was a ‘sin’, so now God can do for me).

All of this is as filthy rags (Isaiah 64:6). All of this needs to be counted as dung as Paul says of his own attempts (Philippians 3:8-9). And I bet Paul was much better at living the Law than I was.

But I was deceived in my actions thinking that I was doing right with God. But boy, was I wrong. The only thing that saved me was hearing the Truth. And how I heard the Truth was to experience that Truth through others—via sermons, personal encounters, and eventually through a deeper relationship with the Holy Spirit (being Baptized in the Holy Spirit).

I had to, and still have to, repent (change my thinking and actions) from my dead works; all because Christ already had achieved everything to me and for me. The Law was bondage, but Christ was freedom. He set me free from the burden and trap of having to try for my own righteousness by the Law.

Galatians 5:1,4
Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage [the Law]. Whosoever of you are trying to justify yourself by the law; you are separating yourself from Christ, and grace is of no effect to you.
Romans 7:6
But now we are delivered from the law, that being dead wherein we were held; that we should serve in newness of spirit, and not in the oldness of the letter.
I don’t always catch it right away when I perform dead works, but the Holy Spirit is helping as I do have to test the spirits—whether what I am hearing to do is something of Him, or a deception of an old mindset of mine of doing things. But in my heart, I know I have been set free from a performance-based Christian religion. I have been set free from sin and the strength of sin. I have been set free from a sin-consciousness that is from the knowledge of the Law.

How I live now is through the fruits of the Spirit in me—not my ability (fruit), but His. Only He can live in Agape Love through me. This is my foundation, my goal, and my being. And the more I realize this and hold it true in the everyday details of my life, the more I can just be Him (who I really am)! This is living a life of Faith; but not my faith, His Faith.

His Faith – The Faith of Christ

This is the second aspect of what Hebrews 6:1 shares. I had to come to a point where I no longer addressed my self-righteousness, but Christ’s in me by His achievement of Faith.

Galatians 2:16,20-21
knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified. I have been crucified with Christ; therefore, it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me. I do not set aside the grace of God; for if righteousness comes through the law, then Christ died in vain.

Ephesians 2:7-9
that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us through Christ Jesus. For by God's grace you have been saved through Christ's faith, indeed this was not done out of your own ability, it is the gift of God (not of works, lest any man should boast).

Philippians 3:8-9
Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ, and be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by Christ’s faith.

It is Christ’s Faith that made all this happen for me and for you. His Righteousness upon us because He had and walked in complete Faith. And this Faith He perfected:

Hebrews 12:2a
looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

He perfected Faith in that Christ never did anything of His own will or accord; He only did as He saw His Father do—all the way through giving His Life for us! Before the cross, we witnessed varying degrees of faith that people had. Faith was something that individuals had to generate; but post-cross, we have all been Gifted His One-And-Only measure of Faith.

Romans 12:3
For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.

If we have been given His measure of Faith, what do we do with it, and how does it transpire in our lives?

One thing I had come to believe was that I needed to have faith to get God to move. But we are not told to have more faith, we are only told to believe. Our only requirement is to believe:

Mark 16:15-18
And He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned. And these signs will follow those who believe: In My Name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues; they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will by no means hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.”

Acts 8:34-37
So the eunuch answered Philip and said, “I ask you, of whom does the prophet say this, of himself or of some other man?” Then Philip opened his mouth, and beginning at this Scripture, preached Jesus to him. Now as they went down the road, they came to some water. And the eunuch said, “See, here is water. What hinders me from being baptized?” Then Philip said, “If you believe with all your heart, you may.” And he answered and said, “I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.”

What comes out of that belief is His Faith, as Faith is a Fruit of the Spirit. And the Fruits of the Spirit are for our benefit, demonstrating (proving) what is acceptable to the Lord:

Galatians 5:22-24
But the fruit of the Spirit is Agape Love, Joy, Peace, Longsuffering, Gentleness, Goodness, Faith, Meekness, Temperance: against such there is no law. And if you are Christ's, your flesh has already (once and for all time) been crucified with its affections and lusts.

Ephesians 5:9-10
For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth, proving what is acceptable unto the Lord.

All those Fruits are something that we cannot produce on our own. We can mimic them to an extent, but we can never truly achieve that God-Type of Fruit. Agape Love (which is God’s Love) is only something He can produce; yet we are only capable of producing Eros love (sexual attraction), Phileo love (to like / fondness / friendship) and Storge love (affection between parents & children). If God requires us to Agape Love the Father and others, yet we don’t have our own ability to do so on our own, then He has to provide it for us. His Agape Love in us and through us, back to Him and to others. He likewise gives us all His Fruit of the Spirit which includes Faith. This is what I have come to truly sink my teeth into—that for God so Agape Loved us that He gave His ALL to us and for us, for our free and unlimited use. We have been Gifted everything for free!

Ephesians 1:3
Blessed is the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ.

There is nothing we can ask for or beg for that we have not already been given or provided:

Philippians 4:13
I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me.

Philippians 4:19
God has liberally provided for all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.

Faith is not something we produce for God, it is something God produces for us as a Fruit of the Spirit. Faith is not needed for God to move, because when we move (just believe) towards His called direction, He produces the Faith needed for the task. We only need to believe…He provides the rest. What we do as a result of believing the Lord is Faith. Living a life of Faith is our reaction / outcome to believing what He says is in line with what He says. This is Life of Faith is not as a “to get”; but it is firstly as an existence (a position) because of Christ’s Faith, then as one who has His Faith. When we believe and we act, we automatically walk in His Faith.

Hebrews 10:38a, 11:1,6
Now the righteous live by faith. Moreover, faith is the [actual existence, steadfastness of mind, firmness, courage, resolve, confidence, firm trust, & assurance] of things hoped for [trusted in], the [proof & conviction] of things not seen. But without faith it is impossible to please Him: for he that cometh to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of them that seek him.

As we maintain a belief in what His Truth is, we may not have directly in our hands the things we hope for; but that hope is not void or lost because He does bring things to fruition as we stand firm in His Faith. And since we do have Faith, we please Him. For we come to God, our Loving Father, believing that He is God, and also stand believing that He does reward us as we seek Him as One who is a Loving Father (who gives us wisdom & help in all times).

We have His Faith to be able to live the life the Lord prepared for us (a Kingdom Life). We are only required to believe when coming to the Lord; from that point of belief we begin to cultivate the Fruit of Faith in our life for what we are believing for. Seed, time, and harvest.

Galatians 6:8-9
he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting. And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.

If we do not see an immediate manifestation, that does not mean we quit (we faint) ...we hold fast to that belief in Him. Regardless of the time, it is His Faith that manifests (we reap) through relationship with Him! Once seeded, we water by His Word so that we can reap that harvest when the time comes--regardless of how long that time is, whether instant in a miracle, or over the course of time by renewing our mind and putting aside our already-dead-flesh (Galatians 5:24). And this already-dead-nature we represent through water baptism.

Baptism – A Clear Conscience

In Hebrews 6:1, it reads “the teachings of baptisms”. The Greek definition to this word ‘baptisms’ refers to the ceremonial washings and cleansing the Jews would often do; but also, it is rooted in the Greek word referring to immersion and repeated dipping in water.
Often, the Pharisees questioned Jesus regarding rituals, including the one of washings:

Matthew 15:1-2,11-12
Then the scribes and Pharisees who were from Jerusalem came to Jesus, saying, “Why do Your disciples transgress the tradition of the elders? For they do not wash their hands when they eat bread. He said to them, “Hear and understand: It is not what goes into the mouth defiles a man; but what comes out of the mouth, this defiles a man.”

These ceremonial washings and cleansings were performed by the priests:

Hebrews 9:6-10
Now when these things had been thus prepared, the priests always went into the first part of the tabernacle, performing the services. But into the second part the high priest went alone once a year, not without blood, which he offered for himself and for the people’s sins committed in ignorance; the Holy Spirit indicating this, that the way into the Holiest of All was not yet made manifest while the first tabernacle was still standing. It was symbolic for the present time in which both gifts and sacrifices are offered which cannot make him who performed the service perfect in regard to the conscience—concerned only with foods and drinks, various washings (baptisms), and fleshly ordinances imposed until the time of reformation.

This washing (with the other rituals) was a means to clean the conscience of the priest before entering the Temple. However, it was not a perfect system, because this ritualistic cleansing had to be performed over and over again. But there is no need for that now as we can have a clean conscience once-and-for-all-time because of what Christ accomplished!

Hebrews 9:11-15
But Christ came as High Priest of the good things to come, with the greater and more perfect tabernacle not made with hands, that is, not of this creation. Not with the blood of goats and calves, but with His own blood He entered the Most Holy Place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption. For if the blood of bulls and goats and the ashes of a heifer, sprinkling the unclean, sanctifies for the purifying of the flesh, how much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without spot to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God? And for this reason, He is the Mediator of the new covenant, by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions under the first covenant, that those who are called may receive the promise of the eternal inheritance.

Hebrews 10:1-2
For the law having a shadow of good things to come, and not the very image of the things, can never with those sacrifices which they offered year by year continually make the comers thereunto perfect. For then would they not have ceased to be offered? because that the worshippers once purged should have had no more conscience of sins.

Hebrews 10:19-23
Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh; and having a high priest over the house of God; let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water. Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;)

Because Christ removed all our sins of the flesh, we no longer have a need to perform out of our own ability or rituals to create our own self-righteousness (which are dead works). It is through Christ that we (the whole world) have been reconciled to God the Father; thus, there is no need to have any form of fear coming to the Father. We can be bold in our approach to God the Father, not having to think of ourselves less or that we are unclean in any fashion. And as a believer, we can let go of the fear that we are not perfect in the eyes of God, because God sees us through Christ Jesus—clean and without blemish. This is having a clear conscience!

And our act of water baptism is a representation that our self-works are no longer required, that our flesh is dead, having died through Christ; and that our consciousness of sin is also dead having died with the flesh at the Cross.

Galatians 2:20
I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.

1 Peter 3:18-21
For Christ also suffered once for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive by the Spirit, by whom also He went and preached to the spirits in prison, who formerly were disobedient, when once the Divine longsuffering waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was being prepared, in which a few, that is, eight souls, were saved through water. There is also an antitype which now saves us—baptism (not the removal of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God), through the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Paul made that determination of himself to having a clean conscience, and made it known that we must as well.

Acts 24:16
And herein do I exercise myself, to have always a conscience void of offence toward God, and toward men.

1 Timothy 1:5
Now the end of the commandment is Agape Love out of a pure heart, and of a good conscience, and of faith unfeigned.

2 Timothy 1:3
I thank God, whom I serve from my forefathers with pure conscience, that without ceasing I have remembrance of thee in my prayers night and day.

Without a clear conscience, we are still trying to perform to get approval from God or performing as a means to get God to move in our lives. When we get caught up in that, we neglect or deny what Christ already did for us. We are then never at rest—Christ came to give us that rest! But when we renew our heart and mind to accept that we no longer need to try for righteousness, we allow the Lord to move in our lives based on what Christ did (His Faith).

The more we have a knowledge of the Law (not being God’s Agape Love), the more we tend to dwell in a sin conscience (as did the Pharisees). They lived with a conscience seared (marked / branded) not by righteousness, but in a sin conscience—seared being that of a “perpetual consciousness of sin” (1 Timothy 4:2).

The power of sin is the Law (1 Corinthians 15:56). The more we know the Law, the more we are caught in the trap of desiring to sin more. This is the life I was caught up in.
As I have mentioned before, I grew up in a very legalistic religion—one that I learned not God’s Agape Love, but His Laws and requirements to do right (a Christian religion based on morality). These were things that kept me from a close relationship with Him and one that never allowed me to come boldly into His Throne Room. I was always conscience of my sins and everyone else’s. There was no Agape Love in and through me. I was miserable inside, dying every day when all the Father wanted for me is Life, not death. But how could I ever receive that from Him when I never felt worthy to receive it.

The Lord tried to get my attention regarding my spiritual dying through dreams. I would often have very real-feeling dreams where I woke up with anxiety, frustration, worry, and a sense of defeat. These dreams were typically of me driving a car, discovering that the brakes did not work. I would either be coming to a traffic intersection where I would have to stop, but the car would keep rolling forward towards the car in front. I would panic and not know what to do as I pressed the brake and nothing would happen. It would then intensify where I would then have to take corrective action to try and avoid a collision, but the car I was driving would not stop; instead it would now increase in speed. Eventually, the worst of it would be that to avoid a collision, I put the car in reverse. Now this was the most extreme anxiety and defeat, because now I was driving backwards, fast (continually increasing in speed), and with no breaks—I was out of control and I could feel it in my soul. The car would never stop, instead I would just wake up—heart racing, mind troubled, soul disturbed. And these dreams would repeat and repeat over many years many times a year. I was spiritually dying and didn’t know it—I was on a course to disaster. But the Lord needed me to change. And once that change occurred, those dreams did not return!

I had to let go of my own self-worth tarnished by my own sin conscience. This was a process that took on many aspects that I can’t even fully understand. But what happened in that change was Him showing me what His Completed Work looked like; and thus, setting my foundation right: that my flesh was already dead (having already died with Christ), that I was made alive by Him, that we can live in and with a clear conscience knowing all our sins are removed, knowing that we do not have to try to attain right-standing with God on our own merits. This clear conscience ties back into repentance from dead works and His Faith—all interwoven together, none without the other. This is why it is foundational in our relationship with the Lord.

Think of a well-built concrete foundation set on bedrock. Concrete is a substance made up of more than one element: steel reinforcing, aggregate, cement, and water. It is these things that combine to make it the strength it needs to be to uphold all that is built on top of it. Each of those elements separately cannot provide for a stable or viable foundation. But together they do—just as together repentance from dead works, Christ’s Faith, and a clear conscience towards God creates the strong and stable foundation needed to build His Kingdom in one’s own life! A foundation built on Him as the bedrock. And this foundation is kept clean and free from defect through His Word. He continually washes us.

Titus 3:4-6
But when the kindness and the love of God our Saviour toward man appeared, not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour, that having been justified by His grace we should become heirs according to the hope of eternal life.

Ephesians 5:25-27
Christ Agape Loves the church, and gave Himself for it; that He might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, that He might present it to Himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.

He made us clean and keeps us clean (John 15:3). We move from Glory to Glory (2 Corinthians 3:18). And we ARE a Holy Temple (1 Corinthians 3:16), and nothing can change that!

When we understand this, we can live free from guilt and free from a sense of obligation to the Lord. Free to just live in Agape Love; for the more we are living in Agape Love, the more we are caught up in His presence and His Finished Work and Rest. And the less we end up sinning in our actions. It is this Finished Work and Rest that we are announcing through Water Baptism.

And this Completed Work and Rest includes healing, health, and all Spiritual Gifts. This is seen in the power of laying on of hands.

The Laying on of Hands

When we lay our hands on someone as Hebrews 6:1 shares, we express Christ on earth as His Body. The depth of meaning and revelation behind this is broad—encompassing much; the roots of which stem from Christ’s Completed Work.

Jesus, before He departed this earth, gave instructions for us to lay our hands on people with the promise of a result:

Mark 16:15-18
And He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned. And these signs will follow those who believe: In My Name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues; they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will by no means hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.”

What a wonderful promise: they will recover!

I have found that a gentle touch of the hand can bring calm. It can bring a person who is suffering a sense that they are not alone, bringing comfort, and opens up a trust an acceptance for the Holy Spirit to move in their life. This, combined with a prayer or an authority of speaking to their personal mountain, their sickness, disease, soul issue, will be removed and they will recover (made well).

Matthew 21:21-22
So Jesus answered and said to them, “Assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith and do not doubt, you will not only do what was done to the fig tree, but also if you say to this mountain, ‘Be removed and be cast into the sea,’ it will be done. And whatever things you ask in prayer, believing, you will receive.”

We are to speak to the mountains—being anything that is not aligned with the Kingdom of God. It could be a personal mountain (such as physical or emotional health issues, persecution, finances, home environment, relationships); or the like in other people; or problems in an area, community, country, or government / authority (famine, plagues, corruption, violence); or even the weather and natural disasters (drought, flooding, storms, hurricanes, volcanoes).

The Lord told Adam in the Garden of Eden to have rule over (subjugate) the world.

Genesis 1:26-28
And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps upon the earth. So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moves upon the earth.

However, Adam gave this authority over to the Devil. But, Christ claimed it back for us!!!
Jesus demonstrated what it means to have dominion. And what He showed us is not a rule that was through the violence and destruction that we often see committed in this world; He showed rule through Life. He spoke Life to people, multiplied food, and gave peace to storms.

We do see that He did curse a fig tree; but we need to understand that the fig tree was not producing the expected fruit that was of God’s creation. He ‘destroyed’ with a righteous indignation, that which is not of God’s Kingdom—just as He ruined and demolished the devil, sickness, disease, sin, and destructive storms. He showed this righteous indignation during separate visits to the Temple where He chased out the venders and animals with a whip (John 2:13-16 and Matthew 21:12-13).

This is the same righteous indignation attitude we need to have when we are confronted with anything that opposes the Kingdom of God! We need to use the authority Christ returned to us to have dominion over all which is not of God! When we see these things, we must speak to it to stop in the authority that is Jesus Christ in us.

If disease, “we break it in the Name of Jesus, and speak Life into the person.” When a storm comes, “be gone in the Name of Jesus.” When we need rain, “rain come in the Name of Jesus”. We drive out that which does not belong, and command in that which does: with that authority! Let us NEVER accept sickness, disease, birth defects, or cater to the excuse that things exist and cannot change because “they / I was just born this way”. Christ’s power and authority to us and through us is greater than all things!

When we lay our hands on the sick, remember that it’s not my own authority based on my own righteousness or faith; I am using the gift of Righteousness and Faith that is by and from Christ Jesus given to me. This is how we eliminate doubt and can witness the truth that, “they will recover”. And this is something I witnessed in my own life…that when I let go of it being a righteousness and faith out of my own self-worth & self-works, I saw miracles happen and people get healed! This too with a change in attitude and response to whom I was ministering to—that instead of praying to God for them, I prayed in response to His authority through me by literally speaking to the situation. I became His Body (Jesus Christ Himself) on earth. This is His Will and command for us, not only when we pray, but when we lay our hands on the sick.

With the performing of laying on of hands comes a belief; a belief that Christ bore all our sicknesses and diseases:

1 Peter 2:24
who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, having died to sins, might live for righteousness—by whose stripes you were healed.

And this not only applies to who we are laying our hands on, but ourself. This laying on of hands went against the customs and Laws the Pharisees held onto. In those days, it was not permitted to touch those who were deemed unclean. And moreso, touching someone with a disease meant that you yourself could contract their disease. They faced people with varying skin diseases and leprosy that had no cure. Likewise, we also have contagious disease (some even without a medical cure): TB, HIV/AIDS, Ebola, and other plagues. Yet we are told to touch them. Why would He command us to do that which could then also kill us? Because there is no Authority or Name above the Name of Jesus. It truly is that “by His stripes we WERE healed.” This belief in the in the laying on of hands is both a sign to the healer and the one being healed.

But the laying-on of hands is not just limited to healing, but also includes the giving of the gift of the Holy Spirit:

Acts 19:1-7
And it happened, while Apollos was at Corinth, that Paul, having passed through the upper regions, came to Ephesus. And finding some disciples he said to them, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?” So they said to him, “We have not so much as heard whether there is a Holy Spirit.” And he said to them, “Into what then were you baptized?” So they said, “Into John’s baptism.” Then Paul said, “John indeed baptized with a baptism of repentance, saying to the people that they should believe on Him who would come after him, that is, on Christ Jesus.” When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. And when Paul had laid hands on them, the Holy Spirit came upon them, and they spoke with tongues and prophesied. Now the men were about twelve in all.

This is something I have personally experienced as well. When Jesus baptised me in the Holy Ghost, it was such a personal and effectual event—it was me submitting myself to Him during my asking Him for that Baptism and the Gift of Tongues. During the months directly after that, I ministered my experiences with a dear friend. Through that time, she began to open up about what she saw and experienced from me. Like so many, she did not understand what was happening regarding the Holy Ghost and Tongues, and even had people speak out against this being something that occurs in the now, having died away during the Bible era of the Apostles. But God’s Word is alive and continues to remain alive (that promise could not have died out because His Word is Life). And through that promise, and through the opening up of my friends’ heart to not only trust me, but Trust the Lord, this Gift of the Holy Ghost was given to her when I had laid my hands on her. And right then, in the Spirit, we saw Jesus with us performing the same Baptising in the Holy Ghost as I had experienced. Followed that same day with her speaking in tongues as He Gifts. This is a testimony of how the Lord still works.

Each of us becomes the Body of Christ (Him as a person on this earth) when we minister His Agape Love. Just as Jesus healed through the laying on of hands, so do we. And just as we saw the Gift of the Holy Spirit given in the same manner, so do we. The laying on of hands is a powerful weapon of authority! It brings confirmation that Christ completed the Work He set out to do. He brings Life to those in need: the Life of healing, the Life that is the Holy Ghost, and also the Life that returns people from death. We not only see healing (which He accomplished), His Gift of the Holy Ghost (which He promised), but also of people being raised from the dead (which He overcame).

Matthew 9:18-19, 23-26
While He spoke these things to them, behold, a ruler came and worshiped Him, saying, “My daughter has just died, but come and lay Your hand on her and she will live.” So Jesus arose and followed him, and so did His disciples. When Jesus came into the ruler’s house, and saw the flute players and the noisy crowd wailing, He said to them, “Make room, for the girl is not dead, but sleeping.” And they ridiculed Him. But when the crowd was put outside, He went in and took her by the hand, and the girl arose. And the report of this went out into all that land.

Acts 20:7-12
Now on the first day of the week, when the disciples came together to break bread, Paul, ready to depart the next day, spoke to them and continued his message until midnight. There were many lamps in the upper room where they were gathered together. And in a window sat a certain young man named Eutychus, who was sinking into a deep sleep. He was overcome by sleep; and as Paul continued speaking, he fell down from the third story and was taken up dead. But Paul went down, fell on him, and embracing him said, “Do not trouble yourselves, for his life is in him.” Now when he had come up, had broken bread and eaten, and talked a long while, even till daybreak, he departed. And they brought the young man in alive, and they were not a little comforted.

It was not only Jesus that brought Life to the dead, but the disciples too. He conquered death and proved it through not only bringing others back from the dead, but He Himself was raised from the dead. These types of miracles performed by Jesus and His disciples and Paul are not just for them, we are told that we too (all who believe) will perform the same miracles as Jesus did and more!

John 14:12-14
Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do, because I go to My Father. And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask anything in My name, I will do it.

Christ is the completed work. He proved this in His ministry. He went to the Father, and in the process conquered death, Hell, and the grave. He is the Resurrection and the Life! (John 11:25)

The Resurrection of the Dead

This is the second-to-last part of Hebrews 6:2.

Paul speaks clearly and in detail on the Resurrection of the dead in all of 1 Corinthians 15. But instead of copying the whole chapter to read, I will hit on some of the key aspects of what the Resurrection entails:

1 Corinthians 15:3-8
For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures, and that He was seen by Cephas, then by the twelve. After that He was seen by over five hundred brethren at once, of whom the greater part remain to the present, but some have fallen asleep. After that He was seen by James, then by all the apostles. Then last of all He was seen by me also, as by one born out of due time.

If there were any doubt about whether Christ had been raised from the dead, Paul lets us know that He was seen by over 500 people at one time. So this is not just a testimony of a few, but of many. Jesus Christ predicted that His death, burial, and resurrection would take place. And this came true! But the biggest testimony to His resurrection and ascension to Heaven is the Holy Spirit in our lives (all of humanity):

John 16:5-7
But now I go away to Him who sent Me, and none of you asks Me, ‘Where are You going?’ But because I have said these things to you, sorrow has filled your heart. Nevertheless, I tell you the truth. It is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you; but if I depart, I will send Him to you.

Jesus could not have sent the Holy Ghost if He hadn’t ascended to Heaven to be with the Father. And He could not have ascended unless He had been raised from death, having died through Him giving up His Own Life (not killed):

John 10:15,17-18
As the Father knows Me, even so I know the Father; and I lay down My life for the sheep. Therefore, My Father loves Me, because I lay down My life that I may take it again. No one takes it from Me, but I lay it down of Myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This command I have received from My Father.

And we see He had the power to raise Himself up as well! And His resurrection is key to Faith and our Life (not only now in this life, but eternally)! Without Him dying to cleanse everyone’s sins of the flesh, and resurrecting to make us Holy through belief in Him (removing the Sin of not believing), then we would be eternally without hope dying in Adam, not living in Christ.

1 Corinthians 15:12-23
Now if Christ be preached that he rose from the dead, how say some among you that there is no resurrection of the dead? But if there be no resurrection of the dead, then is Christ not risen: and if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain. Yea, and we are found false witnesses of God; because we have testified of God that he raised up Christ: whom he raised not up, if so be that the dead rise not. For if the dead rise not, then is not Christ raised: and if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins. Then they also which are fallen asleep in Christ are perished. If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable. But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept. For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive. But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ’s at his coming.

But Christ WAS raised from the dead and so do we have this hope and promise when He returns! Our dying is not the end-all-be-all of life and existence. It is moreso like a sleep (as Paul refers and as Jesus referred to when speaking about Lazarus) where we will wake up again. What we have to comprehend is that when our body physically dies (a result of our spirit leaving our body), we still exist. Our body is not who we are, our spirit is who we are. And our spirit is timeless in that it will exist for eternity. We are now living in eternity; this is not something to come, but a NOW. Our body is but a temporary vessel to the spirit us. Though our body does play a role in our eternity now, it is only for a brief moment in the context of eternity.

When Life and Death are discussed, it is a reference to our spirit condition as part of eternity. In this life in a body, we are given a choice to choose Life or Death through a decision of our spirit, through our heart. We believe in our heart to Salvation (Romans 10:9-10). At that moment of believing, we go from being born of Adam in the flesh unto Death, to being Born Again of Christ unto Life through the spirit!

1 Corinthians 15:42-49
So also is the resurrection of the dead. The body is sown in corruption, it is raised in incorruption. It is sown in dishonor, it is raised in glory. It is sown in weakness, it is raised in power. It is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body. And so it is written, “The first man Adam became a living being.” The last Adam became a life-giving spirit. However, the spiritual is not first, but the natural, and afterward the spiritual. The first man was of the earth, made of dust; the second Man is the Lord from heaven. As was the man of dust, so also are those who are made of dust; and as is the heavenly Man, so also are those who are heavenly. And as we have borne the image of the man of dust, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly Man.

When we do not believe in Christ Jesus, we are denying all He did and remain in that state of Death which is perpetual and eternal separation from God the Father. When we do accept Christ and are Born Again, we move from Death to Life, which is perpetual and eternal existence with God the Father.

John 5:24
Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that hears my word, and believes on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.

Ephesians 2:1-10
And you He made alive, who were dead in trespasses and sins, in which you once walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit who now works in the sons of disobedience, among whom also we all once conducted ourselves in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, just as the others. But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by God's grace you have been saved through the Faith of Jesus; and that not of yourselves; they are the gift of God (not of self-works, lest anyone should boast). For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.

He desires so greatly that we have that intimate fellowship with Him. He values us more than we could ever value ourselves—so much so that God the Father sent His own cherished Son (Jesus Christ) whom obediently honoured His and our Father through the point of sacrificing Himself for us to make us all righteous and the ability for all who do believe to be made Holy! Oh, how much He has made it possible for all to believe and come to Him. Yet, sadly, not all do. But when we do believe, He and all of Heaven rejoices!

Yet, regardless of if we believe or not, we exist forever. For those that are Born-Again, we look forward to a new body, changed when Christ returns. Those that are dead (asleep) shall be raised up, and those that are alive shall be changed in an instance:

1 Corinthians 15:50-54
Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; nor does corruption inherit incorruption. Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed--in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. So when this corruptible has put on incorruption, and this mortal has put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written: “Death is swallowed up in victory.”

1 Thessalonians 4:13-18
But I do not want you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning those who have fallen asleep, lest you sorrow as others who have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so God will bring with Him those who sleep in Jesus. For this we say to you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord will by no means precede those who are asleep. For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus, we shall always be with the Lord. Therefore comfort one another with these words.

What a comfort to know that we will forever be in the presence of God our Father because of all the Christ did! Never, even now, ever having to worry about what sins and mistakes we have done on this earth—for we can have a confident boldness when in the presence of God:

Hebrews 10:16-19
This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, says the Lord, I will put my laws into their hearts, and in their minds, will I write them; and their sins and iniquities will I remember no more. Now where remission of these is, there is no more offering for sin. Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus.

1 John 2:28

And now, little children, abide in him; that, when he shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at his coming.

This is the Eternal Judgment as believers, that they have been Born-Again into a life eternal with the Lord. But sadly, there is also an Eternal Judgment as non-believers that will be a death eternal separated from the Lord.

Eternal Judgment

And this is the last part of Hebrews 6:2.

For those that are not Born-Again, they will be raised from the dead at the final judgment. This is when the Word of God spoken by Christ confirms that they did not believe in Christ Jesus. The testimony of the Word will be their judge. God is not judging anyone now nor will never judge. He gave all judgement (authority to judge) to Jesus. But Jesus did not and is not judging either. It will be the Word (Jesus's words spoken) that will judge in the last day. This Word is the Truth spoken of by Jesus Christ.

John 5:19-23
Then answered Jesus and said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise. For the Father loveth the Son, and sheweth him all things that himself doeth: and he will shew him greater works than these, that ye may marvel. For as the Father raiseth up the dead, and quickeneth them ; even so the Son quickeneth whom he will. For the Father judgeth no man, but hath committed all judgment unto the Son: That all men should honour the Son, even as they honour the Father. He that honoureth not the Son honoureth not the Father which hath sent him.

John 5:30
I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me.

John 8:15-18
Ye judge after the flesh; I judge no man. And yet if I judge, my judgment is true: for I am not alone, but I and the Father that sent me. It is also written in your law, that the testimony of two men is true. I am one that bear witness of myself, and the Father that sent me beareth witness of me.

John 8:50
And I seek not mine own glory: there is one that seeketh and judgeth.

John 12:47-50
And if any man hear my words, and believe not, I judge him not: for I came not to judge the world, but to save the world. He that rejecteth me, and receiveth not my words, hath one that judgeth him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day. For I have not spoken of myself; but the Father which sent me, he gave me a commandment, what I should say, and what I should speak. And I know that his commandment is life everlasting: whatsoever I speak therefore, even as the Father said unto me, so I speak.

“The word that I (Jesus) have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day”. This is because everyone has the testimony of the Holy Spirit with them, that they truly know the Word (the Truth of Jesus Christ). He is always with us to make clear that we are to believe in Christ.

John 16:7-11
Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you. And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: of sin, because they believe not on me; of righteousness, because I go to my Father, and ye see me no more; of judgment, because the prince of this world is judged.

Acts 2:17
And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh.

The Holy Spirit is always with a non-believer convincing them to believe: the spirit Sin of not believing on Him (all fleshly sins have been forgiven). Thus, final judgement only deals with that spirit Sin on not believing. It's not our body that will be judged, it's our spirit / Spirit (whether the Holy Spirit of the believer, or the spirit of a not-born-again person). Since the sins of my body & soul (everyone's body & soul) were taken care of at the Cross, the only sin left is the sin of the spirit not believing in Him.

John 3:17-18
For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. He that believes on him is not condemned: but he that believes not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

And if we haven’t believed in Christ our hearts, then we remain in condemnation; but if we have believed in our hearts, we are justified. When we believe, our identity (who we are to ourselves) changes from one being in the flesh (and fallen-world spirit) to being in the Spirit. We go from an identity of condemnation (living without Him), to one of Life (Living with Him). This is the condemnation Paul refers to talking about how we live our lives now from & as the Spirit; no longer of the flesh.

Romans 8:1,5,9
There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit. But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit.

This condemnation is the status of our spirit in us. This spirit in us when we are born is given the opportunity during our entire earthly life to remove itself from the condemnation of not believing in Christ through believing in Him. Our heart is the gateway through which our spirit / Spirit manifests itself. Thus, when we believe in our heart, we are believing through that gateway to change our spirit to a Holy Spirit. Our spirit is Born-Again, no longer born from Adam, but Born directly of God, going from Death to Life because of Christ. We are Born-Again towards Salvation (the moment we pass from this world into the presence of the Lord).

This ability to come to be Born-Again is the result of all that Christ Jesus accomplished. We no longer have to worry about meeting some expectation before being able to come to the Lord to believe on Christ. Christ reconciled us all to God so that there is absolutely no hindrance in being able to accept Christ and God as our Father. We are all gifted righteous through what Christ Jesus accomplished through the Cross (all people, not just believers):

Romans 3:21-26
But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets; even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference: for all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God; to declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus.

However, this righteousness is not credited to us (being accepted by us) until we believe. It is not righteousness that saves us, it is believing on Him. Christ’s reconciliation of all, and His Gift of right-standing (righteousness) unto non-believers, is so that we can come to Him without fear. And once we believe, we are Born-Again (Christ’s Righteousness fully credited to us as us). 

Romans 10:9-13
That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed. For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

When we believe, our spirit (condemned through the Sin of not believing) is Born-Again as Christ’s Spirit was and is: a Spirit made Holy, a Holy Spirit, uncorrupted. This is why Paul calls all believers Saints (the same Greek word as Holy).

1 Corinthians 1:1-3
Paul, called to be an apostle of Jesus Christ through the will of God, and Sosthenes our brother, Unto the church of God which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called saints, with all that in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, both theirs and ours: Grace is unto you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.

The Holy Ghost cannot dwell in us if we ourselves in our Spirit have not been made Holy. And when we ask and accept His Spirit into us, the Holy Ghost comes and dwells with our Spirit-made-Holy. When we stir up the Spirit in us, we are mixing as to one our Holy Spirit and the Holy Ghost. This being made Holy is being Born-Again.

And our act of being Born-Again leads to Salvation--which we hold onto till the day we go to meet Jesus (our death or His Second Coming). We do this by holding onto the promise by the Faith of Jesus unto Salvation. We cannot lose this Salvation, because it is held onto as a guarantee by the Holy Ghost. But, just as we were not forced into accepting Salvation, we are not forced to keep it. Sadly, given strict parameters, we can choose to renounce that Salvation. We must maintain that Salvation by not denying Him after we have accepted Him.

1 John 2:24-25

Let that therefore abide in you, which ye have heard from the beginning. If that which ye have heard from the beginning shall remain in you, ye also shall continue in the Son, and in the Father. And this is the promise that he hath promised us, even eternal life.

Hebrews 6:4-6
For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened (and have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost, and have tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come), if they shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance; seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh, and put him to an open shame.

Hebrews 10:19-23
Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh; and having an high priest over the house of God; let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water. Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;) For if we Sin willfully [back into no longer believing in Him - renouncing that belief in the heart where belief is accepted] after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for Sin, but a certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation, which shall devour the adversaries. 

This renouncing of Salvation, once Born-Again, is dreadful—so much so, that this is what grieves the Holy Ghost because a person has fully rejected the testimony of the Holy Ghost and has become condemned to Death. How sad for that person. And how sad the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost become for them when that happens. This is why Paul talks about working out one’s own Salvation and holding onto it until the end (when our body dies). Salvation is what we earn, not when we are born-again, but when we finish the race. An athlete does not earn the reward before they run, nor when the starting gun sounds, nor during the run; they earn the reward at the finish of the run. To "carry your own cross" (Luke 9:23) is to bare the things of each of our lives (carrying our salvation) to the end.

Philippians 2:12-13
Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.

1 Corinthians 9:24-25
Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain. And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible.

2 Timothy 4:6-8
For I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my departure is at hand. I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith: Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing.

Acts 20:24-25
But none of these things move me, neither count I my life dear unto myself, so that I might finish my course with joy, and the ministry, which I have received of the Lord Jesus, to testify the gospel of the grace of God. And now, behold, I know that ye all, among whom I have gone preaching the kingdom of God, shall see my face no more.

Romans 13:11
And that, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed.

Nearer in the sense that we are closer to the end of our depart into the Lord. Paul has run the race till the end, holding onto that Faith, so that when the end finally comes, He hasn't quit, but finished in good standing, holding onto salvation to be inherited from Christ.

But not everyone will accept Christ (even though it is God’s will for that to take place). And there is no Salvation after one dies on this earth. We only get one chance, and God our Father, through Christ Jesus, and the Holy Spirit has given us everything we need to just say yes in our heart. And when we do, we can have peace that when final judgment comes—because we have been made to be exactly as Jesus Christ is:

1 John 4:15-17
Whosoever shall confess that Jesus is the Son of God, God dwelleth in him, and he in God. And we have known and believed the love that God hath to us. God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him. Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as he (Christ) is, so are we in this world.

And though everything will be made visible and known, as believers, we do not have to fear anything about Final Judgment. When our words are we believed, then we are justified. When our words are that we don’t / didn’t believe, we are condemned.

Matthew 12:36-37
But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment. For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.

2 Corinthians 5:10
For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that everyone may receive the things done in his body, according to that he has done; whether good or bad.

For believers, Final Judgement is the rewarding of all Christ did, and continued eternal Life in His presence.

Matthew 16:27
For the Son of Man (Christ) shall come in the glory of His Father with His Angels; and then He shall reward every man according to His (Christ’s) works.

For non-believers, Final Judgment will be the presenting of all the proof they had of His Word in their lives, with the result being continued eternal Death separated from His presence. And this place, sadly, is Hell. A place initially reserved for Satan and His angels (demons).

Matthew 8:12
But the children of the kingdom [not of God] shall be cast into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.

Matthew 13:41-42
The Son of Man shall send forth His angels, and they shall gather out of His Kingdom all that offend, and them which do iniquity; and shall cast them into a furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth.

Matthew 13:49-50
So shall it be at the end of the world: the angels shall come forth, and sever the wicked from amongst the just, and shall cast them into the furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth.

Revelations 20:15
And whoever was not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire.

But praise be to God the Father, that because of His Grace and the Faith of Christ Jesus, that option does not have to be anyone’s destiny. He has conquered death, Hell, and the grave for us. That with a simple belief in our heart (not in our mind), we can not only be Saved from that destiny, but we can experience His Saving power in our everyday Life now! How amazing is God our Father that He has done all the work for us! This is not religion, this is Agape Love in relationship!

1 John 5:10-13
He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself: he that believeth not God hath made him a liar; because he believeth not the record that God gave of his Son. And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life. These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.

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