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Free resource to read and study the Bible online. Available in 28 translations and growing.

What Must I DO To Go To Heaven?
 

 

What do religions say?

While many religions teach many different ways to enter heaven, the one and only authoritative source for this information is God Himself. In His Holy Word to us, the bible, He tells us that it is NOT the manner in which so many people still believe or that many religions still teach to this very day.

Many folks who have not been schooled by religions but believe in a god tell me that they just have to be a "good person" and god will bring them to heaven. All of these people who are wrong in their understanding believe with 100% sincerity that their god will judge them in this way. Many folks believe that our good and loving god will have mercy on everyone and not leave anyone behind. These understandings are an idol, a form of idolatry. They have created their own image of god in their minds. All of these "understandings" fail to take into account what God Himself has to say about it.

When we avoid seeking God on our own or when we rely on what someone else (including the pope) has to say, we are gambling our eternal future that our speculation or someone elses is correct. Many people think there is safety in numbers. They are confident that if their church is a large church having many members worldwide, that they cannot be wrong and they place their allegiance with them rather than to simply pick up the bible and learn Godís simple Truth for themselves.

Other folks have told me that they are indoctrinated into tradition. They tell me that their grandparents, great grandparents and parents believed a certain way and that they were "raised" in that way and to them it IS the absolute truth. They bet their lives on it. And in fact they do. Unless their understanding comes from the bible and not from any world religion, they are likely not with an understanding of Godís Truth. It is hard to give up Santa Claus, Christmas, our inherited faith, or any life long tradition. After all, how could we have lived so long and not come (stumble) across the Truth? Yes indeed, it is very difficult to even consider that our lifelong understanding might, just might possibly be wrong. It certainly rocks a comfort zone that we have had for a lifetime. What force could possibly be strong enough to jolt us into even considering taking a look at Godís Truth? Well, for the weak, it will be a fear of their tail burning in hell for all eternity. For those having a stronger continence, it will simply be wanting to have a relationship with God that is an honest and truthful one. After all, if in fact we are living a lie, how long must a lie be a lie before it becomes the truth? The answer is of course, never. If in fact we are living a lie in what we are willing to bet our eternal lives is the truth, then in the end we have lost. Everyone already has an eternal existence. It is simply a matter of existing in life eternal with God or death eternal with satan in the lake of fire. For you see, life is knowing, walking and talking with our Lord. Life is the Father, Son and Holy Spirit looking upon us. Death on the other hand is God having turned His back toward us. In Jesus' prayer to His Father, He says,

John 17:3 "Now this is eternal life: that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent."

I have discovered that some folks fear that God is so demanding on their lives that they want to know the Truth, but not now. They want to wait until they have lived most of their lives in "freedom" and not become bound to Godís expectations of us until later in life. Again, a misconception in the understanding of just who God is.

If they only knew that in Christ we have much more freedom than we ever had before.

 

We MUST choose while we are still alive in the flesh

Unfortunately for many of those who choose to put off intimacy with Jesus, it never comes. Many just plain forget (until it is too late) or reach the end of their life quite quickly and unexpectedly. For them, their fate is sealed. There is no choosing after death. This faith must come while we are still alive here on earth. Jesus has firmly established that it is by "Faith" that we gain salvation. After life, God is plainly seen. Once God is seen, what faith is needed? One cannot have faith in what is known with surety for HEB 11:1 Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.

People grossly underestimate satan. The devil is committed to destroying God. Satan is the ruler of this earth because God permits his sovergn rein for this age. This is because Adam rejected God when he disobeyed Him by eating the forbidden fruit making us all born into this world as enemies of God.

Satan comes to us as an angel of light God tells us (for those who bother to seek Him). He deceives this whole world. And, like dumb sheep, many people, as did I,  blindly follow this deception. This is why Jesus called his followers "sheep." While Jesus Christ is the Prince of Peace, satan is the prince of darkness, the prince of lies and deception. Unbeknownst to most people here on earth, the spiritual warfare between satan and God abounds here on earth. And the pawns (sheep) are you and I my good friend. Our life and what we see is much more intricate and involved than what our flesh can perceive. Satan rules this earth, make no mistake. Satans rule is short lived and he knows it. Thus he preys like a desparate lion throughout the earth. But not to fear, our Lord prevails in victory in the end. This victory is already assured by virtue of the death of Godís one and only Son, Jesus the Christ at Calvary. But are you part of this victory?

This whole existence is a test in a way. It is a filtering out of the kind of people God wants to have live with Him for all eternity. Believe in what is taught by man, or seek what is taught by God. DO NOT ASSUME that what your church teaches is from God, no matter how old or how much "tradition" is in your church. Find out for yourself firsthand by reading His Holy Word to us, the Holy Bible. Now satan is smarter than us. He mixes his lies in with some truth. This makes it much more difficult to discern. For almost anyone can recognize an outright lie (although many don't). But to recognize subtleties is much more difficult. And so, satan takes a core of truth and wraps it in a myriad of lies. Much like catching a mouse in a mousetrap or feeding a pill to your pet. We would always wrap the dogs pill inside some liver sausage. Woof, it was gone, pill and all. But to try and feed the dog just the pill... never.

 

So, What MUST I Do To Go To Heaven? What Does God Say?

To answer the question of "What must I do to go to heaven?" look in the book of Romans 10:9-10 That if you confess with your mouth, "Jesus is Lord," and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved.

First of all, you have to believe. Then you must confess that belief to others. This is so simple, yet so difficult for so many.

 

Religions teach that we must be good people. I can see where teaching virtues has its place, but not as being representative of what God tells us is His way of salvation. It is easy to see where the great churches have gone wrong. The Mosaic Law teaches keeping commandments as a way to salvation. But they missed the boat on the reason why this perfect and Holy Law was given. It was given because of our transgression, our sin. It was given to enlighten us as to the true path to salvation. While the Jews understand this to be true even today, the great churches of today remain with this understanding. Therefore, the great churches are not great. Jesus of Nazareth, the Son of the Almighty God, came down to earth, incarnated as man, to teach us His Holy Truth. Jesus taught us that unless we believe in the Son, we cannot be saved. Jesus told us that He and the Father are One. Jesus taught us that He Is The Narrow Gate, that nobody comes to the Father but by Him. Only through Jesus and no one else, not even his earthly mother Mary (as is taught by the catholic church), do we come to the Father. Jesus taught us that by believing in Him, we have eternal life. Keeping the commandments is not a factor. Eph 2: 8-10 8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith--and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God-- 9 not by works, so that no one can boast. 10 For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

Much can be said about this. For the purpose of this topic, suffice it to say that God makes it clear here that we are saved by "faith" and not by "works." God gave the Law to Moses so that man woould realize that he cannot keep the law. In the book of James, he tells us that if you break one part of the law, it is as if you have broken all of the law. This is a tough standard. It is a perfect God's standard. In realizing that we cannot keep the law, we would then realize our need for a Savior. Yes, when the rich man came to Jesus and asked what he must do to gain eternal life, Jesus told him to keep the commandments. You may recall that this man told Jesus that he DID keep all the commandments since his birth. Now I love this passage so much because Jesus could have ripped into this man telling him just how wrong he was but instead, Jesus does not even address the issue but simply commands him to then go and sell all of his possessions and come follow Him. Jesus knew this would be too much to ask of any human being. That is because at that time, that is the way it was for the Jews. Remember, Jesus came here first for the Jew, then for the Gentile (a gentile is anyone who is not a Jew). The "good works" that we do after becoming believers is the work of the Holy Spirit working through us. These are the "good works" which God has prepared in advance (since before the foundations of the world) for us to do. It must be remembered and understood what Jesus also said to the men who came to Him at the gates to heaven Matthew 7:21-23 "Not everyone who says to me, `Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. 22 Many will say to me on that day, `Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?' 23 Then I will tell them plainly, `I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!'

What is happening here? These people are in earnest for our Lord. Yet, they are turned away as evildoers. They prophecied, cast out demons, and performed many miracles all in Jesusís name. Think about this. They were approaching Jesus based on THEIR works, what THEY did. My good friends, we can do NOTHING to earn heaven short of simply believing that Jesus is who He claims He is. Namely, the Son of God, Who died for the sins of you and me at Calvary and rose from the dead on the third day to reign forever as King of kings and Lord of lords. Our faith MUST be in what Jesus DID, never what we did. There is just no way that anything we could do would make up for the offenses of our sins. Only the shed blood of God can forgive sins. Even the Jews with their annual Yom Kippur and slaying of animal sacrifices only bought them a temporary symbolic forgiveness of sins for they had to repeat this ceremony every year. Jesus' sacrifice of His own blood at Calvary bought us an eternal forgiveness of sins for all believers (is for everyoneís availability but only applies to those who accept it) once and for all (who accept it). His sacrifice is an eternal one that lasts for all eternity. Pretty profound, huh?

Jesus said, "...only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven" will enter heaven. And just what is the will of the Father? John 3:16-18 "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. 18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God's one and only Son.

Thatís it in a nutshell. Believing in the Son, Jesus Christ, that He is who He says He is and has accomplished what He says He has accomplished, thereby having faith in HIM.

Can we earn our way into heaven? NO! Can we get into heaven? YES, by simply doing the only thing we can do without doing virtually anything and that is simply believing in Jesus Christ, the Son of the Almighty God.

Never take my word for anything. Do as the Bereans did and search the scripture daily to see if these things are as they say it is. Make the Bible your one source of authority as this IS Godís Holy Word. There is no other.       

 

 

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