Opinions on faith and life

Make Your Choice

2014-04-02

People often ask, “What is the meaning of life?”, or “Why is there evil in the world?”, or “Why did Jesus have to die?”, or “Why do I need to be ‘saved’?” This article is my attempt at addressing those questions as simply and directly as possible.

God created angels and gave them free will. They had various ranks and levels of power, the highest being Lucifer. But Lucifer decided he wanted to be God and rebelled, and a third of the angels went with him. God also created mankind and gave them free will. But unlike the angels, these beings were “made in the image of God”; they could become not mere servants like the angels but adopted children, family, heirs of God’s kingdom. This seriously irritated Lucifer.

So Lucifer, through the serpent, got the first couple to sin against God and they became mortal. But Adam ignored the serpent’s beguiling of Eve and blamed God for making her. So God cursed the earth because Adam had been formed from it, and Eve chose to leave the Garden of Eden with him. This essentially handed over jurisdiction of the earth to Lucifer; Adam and Eve had chosen his kingdom and turned away from God. Ever since then, Lucifer (better known as Satan which means “Adversary”) has been running the world, which is why it’s filled with suffering and death and corruption.

His fallen angels mingled with human beings and created genetic freaks, the Nephilim, who were giants and likely the basis for all the mythological gods and creatures. These “gods” ruled the earth without mercy and were known for their insatiable appetites for both sex and food. They also began the practice of cannibalism, taught people war, and introduced them to the dark arts.

This was the reason for the Flood. Noah was “perfect in his generations”, meaning of pure human lineage. That is why only he and his family were spared, and why we find so many ancient ruins and highly-advanced ancient technology. The purpose of the Flood was to wipe them all out and start over. Satan had hoped to so corrupt the human genome that the promised “seed of the woman”, the Savior, would not be able to come and free mankind from his kingdom.

And the price was steep. In my opinion, it is Satan who demanded perfect blood as the price of redemption. God set up the sacrificial system for Moses as a type or shadow of the ultimate Sacrifice to come, the One who would pay the price Satan thought impossible for any human being to pay. Satan did everything to try and stop this from happening, but he failed.

This is why Jesus had to die, why blood was required, and why the earth is so messed up. Satan thought that he had God trapped: In order to free mankind from slavery to the kingdom of Satan, God would have to compromise his holiness by ignoring sin and rebellion. And if he did this, then he could no longer condemn Satan. But God outwitted Satan by becoming human and living that sinless life on our behalf, offering Himself as the ultimate perfect sacrifice, then rising from the dead after the price was paid.

You might be wondering why God didn’t immediately take over after this, and rightly so. But there is more to all this than meets the eye. God established a genetically isolated nation who would eventually produce the Messiah, Jesus. But the Jews rejected him so he turned toward the Gentiles. Thus the “church” was born, a group unique in human history in that they would be given the Holy Spirit “as a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance”, which is to be the children of God.

Accepting Jesus is like accepting citizenship in a new kingdom. So though we who have accepted Jesus are technically citizens of God’s kingdom, we still reside here on earth in Satan’s kingdom. This will continue until “the full number of Gentiles has come in”; it’s like a ship not being able to set sail until the full complement of sailors is on board.

Though we don’t know what that number is, we can tell by “the signs of the times” that we are very near to reaching it. Very, very near. And when we do, we will be taken to heaven because as God’s children we are not to suffer His wrath. That wrath will last 7 years and will be for the purpose of finishing the punishments remaining for the nation of Israel and also for punishing the kingdom of Satan here on earth.

So what Jesus died for is to pay the ransom Satan demanded. Anyone who accepts that payment, offered for free, needs only to ask. Of course, this is more than accepting a ticket to heaven; it is accepting the One who offers it. It’s much like accepting a marriage proposal, and you don’t just accept a ring but the person who offers it. In so doing, you are deciding which kingdom to spend eternity in.

Your individual actions in this life are only judged after your eternal destination is determined, based on whether or not you accepted Jesus. For those who did, their actions determine how much reward they get. But some there “will look as though they escaped through a wall of flames”; they will have no rewards at all. For those who reject Jesus, their actions determine how much suffering they get. The kindly old atheist will not suffer the way Hitler or Stalin will suffer; the punishment will fit the crime.

So I plead with you to make your choice: will you choose heaven or hell, eternal bliss or eternal suffering? Wishing there were other choices won’t make them appear, and we are simply not powerful enough to create them. (I know many people would strongly disagree, but I can only tell you what I believe, not make the choice for you.)

You are here for that purpose, to choose where your loyalty lies. Your soul must be of unimaginable value for two powerful beings to fight over you! But as distasteful as it may be for some to bow to God, I can assure you that bowing to Satan will not be better. You have been living in his kingdom all this time, so this life has been a taste of the kind of eternity Satan would offer you. The choice is not between being your own boss or having a boss, but which boss will treat you kindly. Yet you must understand that accepting citizenship in the kingdom of God will make you an “enemy of the state” here and now.

But don’t make your choice simply on the basis of not wanting to stay with Satan forever. Make it on the basis of wanting to be with God forever. He demonstrated his love for us by sacrificing himself on our behalf. And remember that Jesus didn’t stay dead; he rose again and will soon return for us. Will you return his love?