Each day brings us closer to eternal life in heaven or hell. We are living in the valley of decision and make choices every day that take us toward our ultimate destination. Understanding the plan God set up for our salvation helps us live a successful life—utilizing the power of God, while living in Satan’s kingdom. Salvation is not simply a one prayer moment. Let’s look at how God planned to redeem you and me. My guess is that there is more to it than many of you realize.
In the beginning, God created mankind in His image—as a triune being for personal fellowship with Him. You were created foremost as a spirit because He is Spirit and the only way to fellowship with a spirit is through spirit. But sinful disobedience produced disastrous effects in all three elements of man’s being—the spirit, soul and body.
Cut off from relationship with God due to sin, mankind’s spirit died. This was the fulfillment of God’s warning: “But of the tree of knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in that day that you eat of it you shall surly die” (Genesis 2:17).
In addition, Adam’s and Eve’s bodies became subject to corruption—that is, to sickness, decay and death—and they eventually ceased to function and died. Through exercising their will in direct disobedience to God, mankind became a rebel in his soul (mind, will and emotions). Since that time, every person descended from Adam and Eve has inherited the nature of a rebel. Every single one.
In Ephesians 2:1-3, Paul describes the results of rebellion that have affected every one of us: “And you… 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 [rebellion], 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.”
As a result of sin, we have all been dead in our spirits and separated from fellowship with God and eternal life. In our souls we have all been in rebellion against God—choosing our own path and making our own choices. Our bodies, too, have suffered the effects through sickness, decay and death. So much destruction in every part of our being caused by sin.
Yet God, in His infinite love, always desires the restoration of fellowship with mankind. And through the sacrifice of His beloved Son, Jesus, on the cross, God opened a way of restoration. When we are born again and reunited with God, our spirits are made alive once more. We are given a new spirit—born of the Spirit of Jesus Christ.
At the same moment of salvation, our souls—through repentance and faith—are released from the bonds of rebellion and reconciled to God. Our soul is set free but has to be trained against the nature and temptation of rebellion. “Therefore lay aside all filthiness and overflow of wickedness, and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls” James 1:21.
When we realize that we have all been in rebellion against God. We understand why there can be no genuine salvation without repentance. Repentance means laying down our rebellion and submitting ourselves to God’s righteous government.
When we are born-again, we are given a new spirit. This new spirit belongs to Christ. But the soul remains ours to crucify. Our cross is the place where we choose to die. God does not impose this upon us. But He did tell us what we must do to follow Christ Jesus. Give up our life for His life.
Jesus described the freed soul—the seat of rebellion—in Matthew 16:24-25. “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself (the ego or self-will) and take up his cross, and follow Me. For whoever desires to save his life [soul] will lose it, but whoever loses his life [soul] for My sake will find it.”
That scripture is an entire sermon in itself. Our ego and self-will cannot coexist with the Holy Spirit. We either lay our life down—spirit, soul and body—willingly, to allow the Holy Spirit to rule, and to gain a new life in Christ. Or we continue to live in rebellion (do our own thing) and suffer the consequences of not walking in the Spirit-led life. It is a choice we must make every day.
Once we are in heaven, we will not be tempted to choose any other life but the blessed life of Christ. But here, living in a world ruled by Satan we are always in a fight against the temptations he brings to us daily… the temptation to rebel.
We must willingly crucify our own ego, self-will and the need to rebel. It is not possible to do that without first receiving a new spirit. But also provided to us through our repentance, was freedom from the prison of a sinful nature. We are still tempted but no longer subject to sin. In other words, we now have the ability though the power of the Holy Spirit who lives in us, to overcome any temptation.
“And having been set free from sin, you became slaves of righteousness. I speak in human terms because of the weakness of your flesh. For just as you presented your members as slaves of uncleanness, and of lawlessness leading to more lawlessness, so now present your members as slaves of righteousness for holiness.” Romans 6:18-19.
As well as the freedom from our submission to sin, we are given new life that longs for righteousness. We have been purchased and are no longer owners of our life but have willingly given ownership to Christ Jesus.
Galatian 2:20 describes this, “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 faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.”
Lastly, the third part of our being—our bodies, no longer belong to us but become a temple of the Holy Spirit when we are reborn. Every part of our 3-part being is identified in the process of rebirth. Just as the spirit, soul and body all reflected the results of sin and separation from God, we can now regain a new life through Jesus Christ—spirit, soul and body and reflect again what was originally lost: Intimate fellowship with God, a submitted and renewed soul, a body that houses the Holy Spirit and reflects His benefits of healing, deliverance and eternal life.
God’s desire for all who have accepted Jesus as their Savior and Lord, is reflected in the following scripture:
“Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you (set you apart) completely; and may your whole spirit, soul, and body be preserved blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. 1 Thessalonians 5:23.
Too often we want the security of salvation and eternal life but choose not to crucify the flesh and instead continue in rebellion—making our own choices and choosing our own path. Therefore, we live a life that resembles the world more than the life of Jesus Christ. This is not the salvation God designed for mankind.
Choose to walk fully in fellowship with God and keep the temple of your body clean and available for the presence of the Holy Spirit. Choose to crucify your flesh at the cross every day and allow Jesus Christ to live His life through you. We can experience a blessed life now, even while living in a fallen world as we prepare for eternity in heaven with God.
“Not that I have already attained, or am already perfected; but I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me. Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 3:12-14.
With God all things are possible!
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View More Messages From Heaven Blogs:
* Living Through the End Times Without Fear (Video) – Dale Black
* 4 Steps to Get Close To God (Video) – Dale Black
* As In The Days of Noah – Paula Black
* World Food Crisis is Here – Dale Black
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“Thanks for such a clear message at such a time of deception Dale. I have been so perplexed over the last few years of how easily people can be deceived, as they just accept everything they’re told by the mainstream media. Very sad that I haven’t heard discernment mentioned much by church leaders at this critical time in history. However, this video message (Your Enemy is No Match) validates what the Bible says about deception in the last days (2 Thessalonians 2). Godspeed, and keep speaking the truth! Steve
“Glorious! Your grandpa certainly was a wise man! And you showed wisdom way beyond your years when you heeded his advice. “The tongue of the wise brings healing” Proverbs 12:18 – Tim B.
“Excellent advice on Bible study time. This structure is so much needed in the life of believers now a days. I believe many will benefit from it. God bless you brother Dale.” Sophie
“Paula and Dale Black and not like other pastors; they tell it like it is and do not soften the message like most pastors do.” Bru