he Christian Walk column will be one year old in January 2014. We thank the Lord God Almighty that inspired this Holy Spirit-directed work through His Gift of knowledge, wisdom and understanding. I will also thank my good friend, Chuck who provided a veritable platform through the Nigeria World online news portal to reach millions of Christians and non-Christians alike across the globe. There is no doubt that the Nigeria World is the premier pan-Nigerian online news portal in the United States for news for Nigerians both at home and abroad, including non-Nigerians too. Chuck saw the future presciently when the Internet and the World Wide Web were still at their infancies in the mid-1990s when he pioneered an onerously-Nigerian news website which is now a breakfast companion of numerous news consumers across the globe. We thank Chuck and pray the Lord God Almighty will continue to guide and guard him in all his undertakings and He will reward him bountifully for his inimitable contribution to spreading the Good News.
When this column debuted nearly a year ago, I promised it would be conversational and dialogic; I have kept to my words. The Holy Spirit that initiated this column soon turned it into a forum where genuine Born Again Christians interact and learn from the feet of the Lord of lords and the King of kings using the columnist as an amanuensis. There were some letters I have received during this period that gathered with our Lord Jesus Christ while some were nasty, devilish and scattering with the Lord. We ignored the latter and attended to the former. We thank all fellow believers that cast their lots with us through inspiring words of encouragement and Biblically-based questions that challenge us and contribute to our understanding of the Word of Life. In January 2014, we will mark the 1st year anniversary of this column and we urge all our readers to look forward to some goodies as we will be giving away some stuff to assist genuine Christians in deepening their relationship with the Lord. Beginning from this week, we will look at some of the popular questions fellow-believers normally grapple with and use the Holy Spirit to answer them.
Q: How Can A Born-Again Christian Know He or She is Saved and Will Make It To Heaven?
This is a topical question that bothers many Christians. Someone tells you he or she is a born-again Christian and you ask, if he/she will enter heaven and I am stupefied by the reply I get at times; "Oh, I don't know; only God knows who will enter heaven." You begin to wonder which Holy Bible these fellow Christians read. I told of my experience in this column a while ago at a local church gathering when I lived in New York about eight years ago. The pastor of the church had asked a simple and direct question during one of our Sunday Worship Services: "If you know and are sure that you will make it to heaven; that if Jesus Christ suddenly comes now, you are confident you will go to heaven with Him, please raise up your hand." I was the only person who raised my hand and the rest parishioners burst into a derisive laughter as if I had done something terrible. I was furious and belched out: "If you are in this church and call yourself a born-again Christian and at this age and level of your Christian life you aren't sure you'd make it to heaven, why bother to come to church in the first place?" Why are we playing church and deceiving ourselves, if someone who calls him/herself a born-again Christian is unsure of entering paradise.
Many Christians are suffering from this uncertainty and seriously struggling with their eternal destination. Such Christians-and they are numerous-are unsure of entering paradise, either because of what Satan and his demons are feeding them or the enormous confusion their self-guilt is exacting on their faith. Another popular sayings of some unsure Christian goes like this: "You see, pastor I gave my life to the Lord Jesus Christ in so and so year, then I backslide but I am now back…" I look at those people and wonder, can a born-again Christian backslide? Can a man/woman indwelled with the Holy Spirit turn his back on Him? In most cases, when I probe further about the Christian odysseys of men and women that utter those words, three scenarios emerge: first, some were not even Christians at all in the first place so the idea of backsliding doesn't even arise. Second, some sinned and peremptorily concluded that they had been rejected by the Lord and Savior, because of their sins and thus called such missteps backsliding. The third scenario is that their feelings and emotions were deceiving them, often times used by Satan and his demons to stunt their Christian growth. The third and latter groups of Christians are those to be pitied, because they are like the Galatian Christians, who began their Christian growth with faith and soon resorted to legalism.
Yet, the Holy Bible didn't leave us in doubt of our eternal destination as redeemed children of God. Let's examine the three sketched scenarios. But first; who is a Christian?
WHO IS A CHRISTIAN AND WHAT IS CHRISTIANITY? A Christian is someone who knows and recognizes that nothing good, absolutely nothing good resides in him/her and no amount of self-effort can enable him/her to satisfy the righteous requirement of a Holy God. Consequently, the only way any human being just like the rest fallen members of the human race can have a meaningful relationship with the Sovereign Lord God of the heavens and the earth and all that are in them is to accept Jesus Christ Who satisfied the righteous requirement of a Holy God that no human being could satisfy by shedding His Precious Blood on the Cross, died and resurrected three days later. The one who sees him/herself as sinful takes on the purity and righteousness of the Lord Jesus Christ who was sinless and accepts Him as Lord, Master and Savior to serve a Holy and Righteous God. This is the way the Sovereign Lord God had purposed it, period. The one who does this is a Christian and the process of doing this is called Christianity. So how does a human being become a Christian and what is the process of this Christianity?
A time will come in the life of every human being that has ever been born, that are alive now and will ever be born on this planet earth when you are thoroughly fed up with the type of life you are living. It doesn't matter your status in life; money, power, fame, wealth, prestige, intellect, wisdom, all forms of earthly accomplishments etc. There is an underbelly fear that gnaws at each and every core of our individual being about the course of a life lived outside the Will of the Sovereign Lord God of the heavens and the universe. Try as we might to squelch this inner voice telling us in sotto voce: "This is not a life pleasing to Me, your Creator; you need to change and you need Me to make that change," that voice repeatedly nudges us to look for a Greater Alone. This inner voice is placed in all of us by the Creator that even an Atheist will experience it. There are three human responses to this God-given inner voice: ignore this inner voice; respond to it or leave with it till you depart this world. When you ignore this inner voice, God will respect your choice but will nevertheless continue to talk until your clock of life runs out. Those who live with it till they are dead will answer at the other side of the eternal track on Judgment Day. The third sensible option is to respond and here again, there are two ways you can respond: ask the inner voice the proper way to respond or device your own way to respond. The former way to respond is called Christianity; which simply means you are saying: "You this Inner Voice, I want to respond to you, but I don't know how, please can you show me the proper way to respond?" The second response by you is to say: "You this Inner Voice, I want to respond to you, because you're disturbing me to live my life my way and so the way I think I should respond to you is to device a way to know you so you can shut up and stop bugging my life because I have a way to respond already and so do not really need you to show me how." The former is Christianity; the latter is Religion. That is why there are tons of religions on earth today.
Here is the difference; Christianity is the Lord God Almighty pre-ordained purpose and plan in responding to us when we ask Him how we can meaningfully develop a relationship with Him through the Blood Atonement of His Only-Begotten Son, the Lord Jesus Christ. Religion on the other hand is attempt by human beings to understand God Almighty in our sin-soaked human form with our limited human intelligence. Christianity is God revealing Himself in His Deity to the human race through the Lord Jesus Christ. Religion on the other hand says and teaches that we human beings can somehow figure out Who the Lord God Almighty is and we don't need Him to reveal Himself to us. So the human being that takes the first route acknowledges that he has missed it and wants to get it right with his Maker. That is the meaning of sin and repentance. You know you are no good and want to be good but not by your self-efforts but only the Providential Power and Hands of the Creator. You must acknowledge first that you are no good (sinner) and really wants to change the course of your life that is unpleasing to your Maker. This is what known as repentance. Here is how the Book of Romans 10: 9 put it: "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."
You must make an open declaration of that one-sentence verse, but why openly? When you believe anything in your heart, only the Lord God Almighty sees your heart (1 Samuel 16: 7) but your former master, Satan who had held you captive since before now cannot see your heart. He only hears what you say with your mouth and so if you remain quiet in your declaration for the Lord God, he will consider you as phony. "He/She is a liar, I don't believe him/her that he/she is your son/daughter because he/she didn't say it with his/her mouth for all to hear," so Satan will tell God. Consequently, in order to let Satan and his demons know that you really mean business and are through with your old life, you should verbalize it loud and clear. This is what Romans 10: 10 says that you are now with that second step of open declaration and confession for the Lord Jesus Christ "For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved."
Congratulations! It is done. You see, if anyone tells you otherwise how to become a Christian, he/she isn't saying the truth. It's very simple and uncomplicated. If it's hard and difficult to become a Christian, the Lord God Almighty will not hold us accountable and it is because it's easy and effortless that is why most people of the world are missing it. Once you do this, now welcome to the family of God; but this is just your swearing-in-ceremony. Like a young person who has just been matriculated into a college or university, you know that is not the end of your education but the beginning. So it is with Christianity. You are a Christian now, but not a born-again Christian yet.
SECOND STEP: BECOME A BORN-AGAIN CHRISTIAN: Now that you are a member of the family of the True Lord God Almighty, remember why and how you came thus far; you want to have a meaningful and intimate relationship with God. Good. So you now ask Him: Lord how do we go about this relationship now that I have been accepted into Your family? You must ask, because this is what Our Lord Jesus Christ meant when He said in Luke 11: 9; "Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you." What you are required to ask, seek and knock for in that verse is not food or earthly stuff but Our Lord Jesus Christ mentioned it in Luke 11: 13 of the same verse: "
"If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!" There you have it! We are not to ask for food, clothing and shelter as redeemed children of God, because He cares for the birds, the animals and the plants so He will care for you and me, period!
The Holy Spirit is Jesus Christ Himself in the Spirit so make no mistake about it. He is not a bird, an eagle or wind but the Lord Jesus Christ Himself. Immediately you ask Him; He will gladly accept to come into your life because again, He made that promise in Revelation 3:20:
"Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with me." Remember the Inner Voice we spoke about at the beginning of this article? That is Him knocking all the while which made you to give your life to Him when you make the open declaration. Now ask Him to take control and invite Him and eat with Him. Since everything you do with Him is by faith, because you believe Him in whatever He says, not what you see or feel, can you believe Him when He says He and His Father will come to you. But He will also give you three signs for you to know He is come unto your life as He has promised. The first sign is; you suddenly begin to hate what He hates and like what He likes. That is what Jesus Christ meant when He said in John 16: 8: "When he (the Holy Spirit comes, he will convict the world of guilt in regard to sin (a)." You see, you can't hate your old way of life, if you are not shown exactly how God sees it. Second, you begin to pattern your new life according to the Holy Bible and want to become like your new master, the Lord Jesus Christ as much as possible. This is what Jesus Christ meant in the same John 16: 8: "When he (the Holy Spirit) comes, he will convict the world of guilt in regard to sin, righteousness (b)." Finally, the third thing is that the Holy Spirit will convince you that you are making it to heaven and the rest of your former friends, who are still living the old life you were living before you invited Jesus Christ into your life will not go to the same place with you unless they too follow in your footsteps, This is what Jesus Christ meant yet in the same John 16:8: "When he (the Holy Spirit) comes, he will convict the world of guilt in regard to sin, righteousness and judgment (c)."
Immediately you experienced these three attitudinal life-changes, you know what you know and what has taken place in your life. This is what it means to be a born-again Christian. It is not mere faith, feeling, belief and idea but experiential. You are now born-again via the Holy Spirit and can confidently proclaim as Apostle Paul declared in 2 Corinthians 5: 17: "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!" Remember I wrote in Stage One above that you were not yet a born-again Christian, if you stopped at that level and not follow your profession of faith with the second level. This is why. You can't call yourself a "born-again Christian", if you do not have the Holy Spirit and experience the three things the Holy Spirit MUST do in your life as listed her because, as Romans 8: 9 says: "…if anyone does not have the (Holy)Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Christ."
This is Christianity, this is life and this is eternal life. It is hard, narrow but it is the Narrow Truth. It doesn't matter at this stage whether you live to be 40 or 100years; heaven is waiting to welcome you home. No Satan or demon from the pit of hell can take this known truth from you. You can apply the Madisonian Principle to your life beginning from here; let others be entitled to their facts about your life, but trust me, those are facts and opinions of other human beings, who do not have any moral right and higher ground to judge you anyway; but you own the Truth, because He is in you as our Lord Jesus Christ declared in John 16: 13: "But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come." Candidly, that is the Only Truth in heavens and on earth, period! And He is in you, Hallelujah!
NOW RAISE THE BAR AND SEAL THE DEAL: Now that you are a born-again, child of the Holy and Living God, you are unstoppable. Believe it, Satan and his demons, including their human agents will not only take notice, but we mark you. The series of attacks in all areas of life, especially from your former friends, who you once lived the same life with and THE new enemies that Satan will bring up are pointers to your eternal salvation and that you are heaven-bound. Just think about it; why do they hate you now all of a sudden? There must be something different in your life now? Immediately you have the Holy Spirit and are walking with Him, He will ask you: "My son/daughter, do you want our new relationship to continue forever?" You will not even allow Him to finish before you jump up and vow: "I love it more than anything in the world, yes, yes and yes, Lord" This is what is meant by the Psalmist in Psalm 34: 8: "Taste and see that the LORD is good; blessed is the man who takes refuge in him."
The next thing you will ask the Holy Spirit is: What can I do in order to take your new relationship with Him to a higher level? He will then tell you what He told Paul and Barnabas in Acts 13: 2: "Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them." The day you discovered what the Holy Spirit has called you to do on this planet earth is the day you know the reason for your existence. This is your calling, this is God's Will for your life and on this you will give an account when you are out of here. This is the Christian Walk and this is life and life eternal. Indeed, you can and will know right from here on earth that you will enter heaven and paradise. This is not rocket science. It is not complicated at all, for the Sovereign Lord God of the heavens and earth has made it simple and easy, even a child can grasp it. It is God's manifold wisdom and unsearchable heart to make the grasp and our understanding and knowledge of eternal life this way. It is not an exclusive comprehension but an open secret that is available to all and sundry but only to those who are willing and ready to come down from their high horse and humbly embrace this revealed Truth in our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
MY MAIL BAG THIS WEEK:
Dear Moshood: This is the real deal Moshood. The same interpretation that the Lord God gave me about speaking and prayng in tongues are exactly the same interpretation in your column article. You are indeed a true five-fold teacher of the Good News. Remain blessed my anointed teacher----Brother Kirby Skinner, Chicago, IL USA.
Thanks for your comment Brother Kirby. Sorry, I haven't been able to call you as promised. I have a lot on my plate as usual since we are preparing for new students intake and you know who this can be. I will call you over the weekend and please, if I don't call, send me an email. How about the new house? Keep my posted. Greetings from Dr. Margie
Dear Man of God.
This is just to inform you that after reading your last message, I have decided to publish it on my Facebook. So, if I receive feed backs I will send them back to you. This is a great article as many people may be dying in silent. God bless you. Yours fellow laborer---Vincent I. Aja Author: Basic Principles. Missionary, Speaker. URIAH MISSIONS: A worldwide Outreach Ministries. 16 Androsweg Willemstad Curacao (Netherlands Antilles)
Thank you my brother in the Lord.
WORLD PROPHECY: This is huge! Something of global importance, an earth-shattering event and a cosmic occurrence is in the offing in the world. I don't know what it is but the Holy Bible has predicted it and we shall all see it with our very eyes soon. This event is part of end-time prophecy and it's about to take place very, very soon in the next 12 to 24 months. I don't know what it is; I repeat again, I wasn't shown what it is but again, it's HUGE. The whole world will be shocked; from the rising of the sun to the setting of the sun; from the East to the West; from the South to the North, the planet earth is about to witness a catastrophic event. The Divine Hand of God Almighty, the Creator of the heavens and the universe, Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ is about to intervene in the affairs of humanity. The world media, the commentariat, the scientists, the astrologers, the men and women of earthly wisdom and their ilk will be talking their heads out but will not be able to explain but those who know the True God will be unshaken and unperturbed. What is it? I wasn't shown but was only told (Luke 21:11 & 25).
I have been repeating the above prophetic words almost a year since this column debuted and as events unfold around the world, I will not comment on the unfolding drama in Syria. Also in the news is the current rapprochement between Washington DC and Tehran. The other day, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met with President Obama on the new tune being sung by the Ayatollahs of Iran on the sanctions crippling their nation. We will not comment on the recent U.S. Government shut-down too. Again, let's keep our fingers crossed as events play out in the most volatile areas of the world, but one thing is certain, biblical prophecies are being fulfilled right before our eyes.
Dr. Fayemiwo, CEO, Alternative Lifestyle Communication, DBA Chicago and co-author of "The Kingdom of Satan Exposed," is head of Global Missions and professor of Biblical Exegesis at Kingdom Bible College and Seminary, Tucson, Arizona, USA. He can be reached at ProfessorMoshoodFayemiwo@KingdomBCS.com Visit his website: https://allternativecommunication.net/