Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Your Future

Most of us are eager to know about our future.A few of us desperate.What will tomorrow bring? Will there be blessings coming my way or will I suffer loss?These thoughts keep plaguing many minds.
To know their future, people run to & fro, searching for those who can predict their future. Some consult astrologists, some read their horoscopes carefully.There are many who claim they can predict ones future. Some read the lines on the palms, some look at the furrow lines on the forehead, others look at the position of the stars and predict the future. (The Bible does not approve of such methods of predicting the future)

In 1990, while travelling from Haryana to Mumbai by train, a fellow traveller began predicting the future lives of our co-passengers by reading their palms. People surrounded him like bees in a hive, eager to know their future. Finally he turned around and asked me, “Dont you want me to predict your future, show me your right hand.”
Without showing him my hand, I smiled and said, “I know my future very well. There’s nothing new that you can say.”He looked displeased and left me to attend to others who flocked to him.

When I was studying in the 8th standard (long before I knew Christ) a man once took my hand and began reading my palm. “I dont see you studying farther than 10th standard. Very bleak job prospects too. May be a job just enough to earn a livelihood!”he said shaking his head in dismay.
Time itself is witness to the lies that he said. I finished my post graduation in medicine and by the Grace of God have completed 17 years of fruitful work as a doctor.

Are you really eager to know your future?
If you were taken to a place with a flower garden and a field on fire standing side by side, which would you choose to behold ? Flowers are beautiful to behold, to touch and we enjoy smelling their sweet fragrance.
But, what about fire? Some of us are afraid even to look at blazing fire from close quarters. Thats because we know that fire can hurt our bodies if we go too close.
Let me again ask you. Imagine the place with flowers and fire to be 2 lands where you can set up home and live.
Will you prefer to live in a land full of flowers or will you prefer a land with fire every where?
Without answering, we all know the answer to this, if one is of a sound mind. We know that fire can harm us, so our decision to stay away from such a place.

Have you ever seen a fire that keeps burning and does not die nor can be put out?
You may most probably reply in the negative. In 1990 during the Gulf war, certain oil rigs that were destroyed kept burning for several months. But finally they were put out and they died.
Some forest fires kept burning for several months in America and Australia last year. They caused a lot of destruction but finally these fires subsided.

To know about a fire that burns continually we need to read a few verses from the Bible.
“If your hand causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life maimed than with two hands to go into hell, where the fire never goes out.And if your foot causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life crippled than to have two feet and be thrown into hell.And if your eye causes you to sin, pluck it out. It is better for you to enter the kingdom of God with one eye than to have two eyes and be thrown into hell, where “their worm does not die, and the fire is not quenched.” (Mark 9:43-48)
In these verses, twice Jesus Christ very clearly mentions of the place where the fire does not go out but keeps burning continually. That place is called HELL.
A place of eternal torment, pain and weeping. Merely mentioning “HELL”brings fear to many.
In stark contrast to this place of eternal torment ,the Bible mentions about a place of eternal peace, comfort and rest. That place is HEAVEN.
There is no death, sorrow, pain or worry in Heaven. Only peace, joy and satisfaction.

What after death on earth? is a question that plagues many minds continually.
Some say there is reincarnation, but there is no proof or basis for that. Others say the wicked will suffer torment. Still others say that all created beings will return to their creator and be with him. All these suppositions have no basis.

The Bible is the place where we find the answer to the question - what happens after a person dies on earth?
Those who accept Jesus Christ as their Lord and Saviour and live according to His Word will gain entry into Heaven after they die and that will be their eternal home, but those who reject Jesus Christ and the salvation that he freely offers will suffer eternal torment in Hell after they die.
A servant of God named Lester Sumrall, while attending his Church in Tennessee, was shown a vision by God as people praised and worshipped the Lord Jesus.
Thousands of people were walking on a road going in one direction. People from many nations were walking together. He saw Americans, Indians, Australians, Japanese and Chinese walking together.
Then the Lord spoke to him,”These people are on the road of life, walking towards eternity.”
Never having seen a movie before, this servant of God was excited seeing all these people from different countries.
“Would you like to see their end?”the Lord then asked him. When he replied positively, in the vision, the Lord took him above these people walking on the road to eternity. After walking for some distance, many people left this main path and walked on to another path.
“Where are they going?”The servant of God asked the Lord. The Lord said, “These are the righteous. They are going into eternal life. They are leaving the life on earth and entering in to my life.”
The people who did not turn to this path from the main path kept walking and reached the end of the path which now ended in a bottomless pit. There was blazing fire in the pit. People falling into the pit screamed and abused and blasphemed. Unbearable pain caused them to pull out their hair and they dug their nail into their flesh and blood flowed out.
The servant of God who saw this vision was greatly troubled witnessing the torments of HELL.
Heaven and hell are not just fanciful stories dear friend. They are realities.
Any person who dies on earth, goes to their eternal home, either in Heaven or in Hell. Every person who lives on earth has 3 distinct parts - Body, Spirit and Soul. After death, the body disintegrates when buried or is burnt. The spirit and soul live forever. The soul is the part of a person called mind or intellect or decision making part.
Life in Heaven or Hell is the eternal future of every person born on earth.
For which life are you (or have you been) preparing yourself?
Eternal joy in heaven or eternal torment in hell? Whether you believe it or not, this is the future of every person who has been born or will be born on earth. This is not my personal opinion, it is the truth that is mentioned in the ‘Word of God”- “The Bible.”

Pastor Daniel from Nigeria died in a road accident on November 30th 2001. For 3 days he was kept in a mortuary. God raised him up from the dead miraculously after that. The Pastor describes what happened between his death and being raised up.
As he was being transported in an ambulance,he died and 2 angels carried him to a very beautiful place. The angels told him that that place was Paradise.
There he saw a great throng of people worshipping God in unison and he too worshipped. He did not feel like leaving that place where there was total peace and joy. But the angels told him that he had to see other places too. They took him to the place of torment called Hell. People in hell were in torment physically and mentally. They spoke to him about their eternal sorrow. There seemed to be no end to their pain and grief.
Heaven and Hell are realities dear Brother, dear Sister. Just to enjoy the fleeting pleasures of today and tomorrow, do not lose your place in heaven. The lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life,these all take away the love of the Father from within us. So Beware.

From the beginning of creation, man has been in contact with earth and the first heaven i.e. the sky (Mathew 6:26)
The 2nd heaven (Psalm 19) which has the sun, moon and stars came in the reach of mankind with the wisdom God gave him. Space shuttles and rockets have helped mankind explore these realms. The 3rd heaven (2 Corinthians 12:2) is the place where God has his throne; where God, the angels and the saints abide. Man cannot get there with his human wisdom. Entry into the 3rd heaven is only through the blood of Jesus.

Some Bible scholars interpret 3 heavens in another way. Heaven itself has 3 sections one above the other according to some.
Sadhu Sunder Singh describes this is his experiences of the heavenly realms.
Saints in the highest section of heaven (3rd heaven) are the one who have lived very close to the Lord while on earth. They have sacrificed much on earth for the Lord and thus this is their great reward.
The saints in the lowest section of heaven (1st heaven) cannot bear the great glory that surrounds the saints in the highest section of heaven (3rd heaven) and so the ones who visit them from the 3rd heaven have a veil over the face as Moses did when he came face to face with Israelites after being with God for 40 days.
The city of New Jerusalem is situated in the 3rd heaven according to the Bible. This beautiful city is not only the abode of God but also of the believers who have lived a life faithful to God and His Word on earth. The Bible describes this city in detail in its last book, the book of Revelation.

A Christian doctor named Richard Eby met with an accident and suffered terrible head injuries. His skull had many fractures and his brain suffered concussions. Lying unconscious in the ICU,the Lord took him in the spirit to heaven and showed him the glories of that divine place.
His spiritual body rejoiced in heaven. The doctor who was later miraculously healed by the Lord found his spirit in heaven very different from his earthly existence. In the spirit realm in heaven nothing is destroyed or rusts or decays. Everything is new, fresh and pure. He tells of walking through a garden and seeing angels singing heavenly songs, some playing harps, others just singing. He stepped on the grass but saw that not one blade of grass was destroyed. The grass was visible through his spiritual body as if it had entered his body. The flowers and the whole atmosphere exuded the presence of God.
He heard heavenly music which had no equals on earth. Angels and saints worshipped, praised and glorified God.
Not everyone has an experience like this, but these are the foretastes of the glory to be revealed to those who are faithful to Jesus. Some people say there is no hell and no heaven. Everything ends with death on earth. This is not true. Believe it or not, Hell and Heaven exist.

Many preachers these days do not preach about Hell in the church. They dont want to bring discomfort to the people in the church. But Jesus, in his ministry on earth, preached more about Satan and Hell than any other topic. You must be knowledgeable about Hell and Heaven.

In the Gospel of Luke, Jesus speaks about the Rich Man and Lazarus. In Chapter 16:19-31, Jesus spoke about the final state of the spirit and soul of both. This is not merely a story that Jesus said. It is a reality. Those who reject Jesus and his offer of salvation through him go to the eternal place of torment called Hell. At the white throne judgement, we read that Hell too is finally thrown in to the Lake of fire. (Revelation 20:14)
The Old Testament saints (i.e. upto the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ) after death went to the place of rest called ‘Paradise.’ They could not enter heaven as Jesus’ blood had not yet been shed as the perfect sacrifice to relieve mankind of eternal death. We read Jesus telling Nicodemus,
“No one has ever gone into heaven except the one who came from heaven-the Son of Man.”(John 3:13)
Not only that, we read in Ephesians 4:8-10, that Jesus delivered these Old Testament saints from Paradise and took them to Heaven. In Luke 16, Jesus said that Lazarus’ spirit and soul went to Paradise (Abraham’s bosom) and that of the rich man went to Hades, the place of torment.(v. 23-25)
In Hades, the spirit of the rich man suffered pain, thirst and sorrow according to these verses, while in Paradise Lazarus had peace and joy.
Read carefully what the rich man says,
“So he called to him, `Father Abraham, have pity on me and send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue, because I am in agony in this fire.’ “(Luke 16:24)
Every person who does not accept Jesus as his Saviour will suffer thus according to the Bible.
We read in the Bible,
“As it is written: “There is no one righteous, not even one; there is no one who understands, no one who seeks God. All have turned away, they have together become worthless; there is no one who does good, not even one.”(Romans 3: 10-12)
“For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. “(Romans 3:23)
If you die in your sinful state, you will finally become prey to the fire in hell according to the Word of God.
When I was doing my post graduation in Medicine in Gulbarga, the summers were very hot. The temperatures rose to 45 - 50 degrees C. The thirst was bad too. Even after drinking 3-4 liters of water every day the thirst remained. Sitting in front of the cooler or fan gave only temporary relief.
If we cannot tolerate the heat and thirst on this earth, just think of how hell will be.
Unbearable thirst but not a drop of water.
Unbearable pain but not a thing to relieve it.
Unbearable sorrow but not a word of comfort.
Is this going to be your future?
Our loving God says,
“See, I set before you today life and prosperity, death and destruction”(Deuteronomy 30:15)
Which will you opt for?
If heaven is to be your eternal home, you have to confess your sins to God and accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour. Some say, “I have no sin.”“I have not sinned.”
The Bible says,
“If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word has no place in our lives.”(1 John 1:10)
If you have not yet confessed your sins to God, you can do it now by praying the prayer at the end of this book
After you have accepted Jesus as your Saviour, you must live for him. The triune God (Father, Son and The Holy Spirit) loves you.
How can you live for Jesus?
You must read and mediate on the Word of God-The Bible. Not only read and mediate, you must follow the apostolic doctrines that are mentioned in the New Testament of the Bible and live according to them.
The Bible says, you must be born again with water (the Word of God) and Spirit (the Holy Spirit of God) to enter the kingdom of God.
You must take baptism in water by immersion after accepting Jesus as your Saviour. By this you are fulfilling all righteousness, you are obeying Gods Word, you are identifying yourself with the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
To live a strong Christian life, you need the filling of the Holy Spirit (Baptism in the Holy Spirit)
Pray to God everyday to fill you with His Holy Spirit i.e. the Spirit of power, love and a sound mind.
You must conquer the lust of the flesh, the lust of eyes and the pride of life by regular prayer and fasting. Overcome satanic attacks using the Word of God with faith against him. Prayer and fasting are very important here too.
You must separate yourselves from idol worshippers and worship the Lord in Spirit and in Truth. Regularly partake of the Holy Communion to proclaim the Lords death till He comes again.
The Lord Jesus says,
“Be faithful, even to the point of death, and I will give you the crown of life. “(Revelation 2:10)
Your eternal future is in your hands. If you reject what you have read here, the loss is no one elses but yours. If you accept it, heaven will rejoice about you.
You must take a new decision today, if you have not yet accepted Jesus as your Lord and Saviour.
God has prepared a wonderful future for you in Heaven.
The Bible says,
“Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God”(John 1:12)
Believe in Jesus, dear friend.
Receive him into your heart. Live for Him. It will be the greatest blessing of your life.

A Christian named Rebecca Springer, was taken to Heaven in the spirit when she underwent a period of great physical and mental stress in her life.
She saw little children playing gleefully under wonderful trees in Heaven. She observed that every one there wore white dresses. Great and beautiful mansions never seen on earth built for the believers were located in one section. The streets were paved with gold. There was peace and joy everywhere.
She was taken to the river of life. As she swam under water, there seemed to be no difference between water and air. Swimming under water seemed like walking on land. She could hear,breathe, talk and laugh under water too. Swimming in the river of life refreshed her spiritual body and mind greatly like no other comparable experience on earth.
The fleeting pleasures of this world are insignificant compared to the glories of heaven that God will give to his faithful. Prepare yourself for these great riches dear friend.

A servant of God named Rasmussen describes a vision that he saw during the days that he was consecrating himself for the work of God.
He saw himself standing in an open field which had just been harvested. The night air was calm. Stars shown brightly in the sky. He praised God for the peace. Then he heard some voices coming from a distance. He could not hear what was being said. When he listened carefully, the voices seemed to be calling for help -”Please save us”“Please save us”. As he went closer and closer to the place where the voices came from, the voices grew louder. People were screaming for help. The voices reverberated in his head. When he came very close, the scene that he saw shocked him. A pit so huge that no one could measure, with blazing fire rising up and going down in it. Immunerable people screaming because of unbearable pain.As the fire rose, they rose up with the fire, when the fire went down they too sank with it.
Suddenly he noticed that he too was standing at the edge of the pit. He could fall into it any moment. He cried out loudly, “Lord. Save me.”“Lord, save me.”The Lord took him up in His arms and placed him back in the place where he stood at the beginning of the vision.
He asked the Lord, “Dear Jesus, what must I do to escape that awful experience?”
The Lord told him, “Believe in me, live for me and follow this person whom the Father has appointed to be your Counselor to lead you till eternity.” When he looked before him, he saw a great and mighty Godly form walking ahead in front of him. He ran ahead to keep pace with him; looking back he asked the Lord; “Who is that dear Jesus?”
To that, Jesus replied, “He is the Spirit of truth; he will lead you into all the truth.”
Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit invite all of you who read this booklet to follow him now and enter into his eternal rest when the time comes.
Will you accept God’s call?
Remember your eternal future. Either in Heaven or in Hell. You can choose for yourself. God bless you.

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