The message is two-fold. There's a mechanical aspects of our walk with
Christ. But beyond that we move away from the mechanical into the personal
walk with Him.
First, He wants us to repent of sin and ask forgiveness for that which
we've done against Him, and against others. In the past, in times of our
ignorance, He winked at sin. But now, He commands all people everywhere
30 And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth
all men every where to repent:
What does it mean to repent? It means to turn away, to not do the thing
any longer, to not pursue it in our thoughts, actions, or deeds those
things which are being repented of (in this case, sin in all its forms).
We learn what sin is by studying the Bible. And even in our seeking of
repentance and an active pursuit of Jesus in our lives, we will still
fail and make mistakes and sin. God knows this. And it does not mean
we are condemned. Pursuing Jesus Christ in this world is difficult
because He is spirit, His call is spirit, and we are still tied to this
flesh-based body with all of its inertia in sin (years lived and living
a particular way, thinking a certain way, doing certain things), but
because He is greater, when we encounter those things in our future after
having come to faith, He gives us the reminder and knowledge that they
are not part of His will for us, and He gives us strength to say no, but
He still honors our choices if we choose to return to sin. He won't
force Himself on anyone, but He simply states the truth: If you sin, you
will perish. If you repent of sin, you will live. He lets you dictate
the terms of your future, but does everything possible to persuade you in
your decision making process by giving you all of the facts, the truth
about the situation.
Occasional and even accidental (spur of the moment) sin is to be repented
of. But if we persist in a pattern where we are sinning continually,
such that we know sex before marriage, or sex outside of marriage, is
sin, and we continue in i, then it is unrepentant sin and that is full
There are other things we do to follow-on with our walk. Faith comes
by hearing, and hearing by the word of God, so we must read the Bible.
We must come together in assembly in a Bible-based church with a Jesus-
centered message. We must pray together, and separately, sharing with
each other one another's burdens, having that genuine love within for
our fellow man.
All of the above indicates the type of mechanical aspects of being a
Christian. But beyond that there is the growth aspect.
Second, parents will understand this better than non-parents. Each
child is born into the world being of a particular makeup. No two
kids are exactly the same, and often times they are staggeringly
different. These early traits develop and mature as they get older
making them the varied and different people they ultimately become.
With Christians it is the same way. Our new birth into faith is of
the spirit, and it is not like our previous birth into the flesh. It
is eternal, of God, and cannot be revoked. And as with our flesh-
based birth, which carries with it distinct qualities and traits which
uniquely are part of our makeup, the innate and natural abilities given
us by God, such that some are great poets, artists, musicians, athletes,
etc., so are people who come to Christ of different natural forms (the
word "natural" in this case being natural in the spirit).
All are given spiritual gifts in various areas, some more than others,
just as in our natural state. These spiritual gifts are not able to
be understood by the flesh, but they are spiritual and require the born
again nature to be understood. The born again follower of Jesus Christ
will know from within what they are, just as a child is able to use
their eyes, ears, senses of taste and touch, yet may not yet understand
what they are. I can remember my son, for example, when he was two or
three, asking me what was inside his arm? He saw how it bent at the
elbow, but only saw the skin on the outside. I'll never forget that.
When we come to faith in Christ we are immediately changed, but as a
newborn baby we require special care and attention just as a newborn
baby requires in the natural (flesh). Parents, family, sometimes
special doctors and medical experts, look after the well-being of the
young child. With us spiritually, it is the same way. We must take
the time to examine our "newborns" and address all of their special
Satan is always at work trying to steal away that which God has given.
He tries to keep us tied to the flesh, not pursuing the spirit. And
it is an ongoing labor and attack to stave it off. It requires a great
deal of personal attention from the day you're saved forward, because
Satan does not stop:
8 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a
roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:
But together God's given us all we need. I may be weak in this or that
area. You may be weak in some of the same or other areas. But together
we are stronger than we are in isolation. And when we come together in
a larger group, chances are not all of us are weak in the same areas,
and we can be the strength others need, and they can be the strength
God has created this family of believers. This unity of faith in Him.
It is us acknowledging we are not all that, but that we have real and
ongoing needs, and that together we are able to meet them as we look
up to Him continually.
A phrase I've seen before is: When it gets too hard to stand in this
The personal relationship we have with Jesus Christ comes with our
ongoing walk in the mechanical aspects. For many Christianity is only
a religion. They go to church on Sunday, maybe Bible Study on Tuesday
or Wednesday, and that's about it. For them, it is a religion, and
they are not saved. But for the one who is saved, who is born again
of the spirit, the ongoing aspects of life and living are not limited
to merely our physical senses for input. God is constantly there in
your thoughts, your thinking, your feelings, reminding you of what you
should be doing, what you shouldn't be doing, and even guiding and
directing your paths sometimes unaware. You won't know why you drove
home this way rather than that way, but later on you might find out
why. A chance meeting with someone, a tire was about to blow and now
it happens in front of a tire repair store, etc. I've seen these
things happen in my life, and I've stood there with my jaw hanging
open after the fact. I've also failed many times in meeting the calls
God has given me within on when to speak to someone, or what to say
It is an ongoing and growing relationship we build with Him, such that
over time He becomes closer and closer to us, such that we are becoming
more and more His, which means we are thinking more and more unusually
compared to the world. It eventually gets to the point where the bulk
of what we do, and the reasons we state why we're doing it, come across
to unsaved people as absolute foolishness and/or insanity. They do not
have the eyes to see, or ears to hear, what we see and hear. So they
are unable to know what we know, resulting in the division.
God commands all people everywhere to repent. He has grace and mercy
to give out to all who repent of their sin, come to Him and ask for
forgiveness of their sin. He will not turn any away who come to Him,
but He also will not force Himself on anyone. He lays out all of the
information about Him, His Kingdom, His free offer of salvation, His
Son, and crucial information like what sin is, what the punishment of
sin is, etc., such that each of us will be able to understand it and
show Him, ourselves, others, and all of creation, who we are by our
I write these things to you becuase I am urged from within to do so by
His Holy Spirit. I am writing these things in as much detail as I'm
able so that you might have proper guidance in what it means to be a
I am not asking you to join my church, or send money, or do anything
that is related to me personally. I am asking you to seek the truth
in your life, to come to God and say as this preacher indicates:
Seek truthfully and you will find out He's real:
Jesus is looking for followers. Believers. Disciples. Those who will
come to Him believing, seeking, desiring to learn, so that they then
might go out and teach others.
It is the example He first gave us in the life on this planet. The
seed is planted, it yields a harvest. Each of that crop has seed in
it such that each of those seeds can be planted and yield their own
harvest. And each of those seeds .... and so on. When trees are
young their harvest may be small. Only a small quantity or small in
size fruit is produced. But as it matures, eventually a full yield
He came and sowed the first seeds. That crop sprang up and produced
more. And the cycle continues to this day.
You are being called right now to become one who learns of Jesus Christ,
who then receives all He has to give you, and goes out and teach others,
to bear the personal relationship with Him in your life, such that the
things you do are no longer done only for you and your interests, but
for Him and His interests. Your focus is no longer on money, or in
personal gain, but in reaching out to others, giving to others, helping
others, relying upon Him to provide your basic / essential needs.
Jesus Christ is the Lord of the universe. He is the author of it, and
what He has in our future is beyond our comprehension in its scope and
beauty. But for now, here upon this planet, we put our faith and trust
in Him and we go through our lives doing those things He would have us
do here upon the Earth:
11:1 And it came to pass, that, as he was praying in a certain place,
when he ceased, one of his disciples said unto him, Lord, teach
us to pray, as John also taught his disciples.
11:2 And he said unto them, When ye pray, say, Our Father which art
in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be
done, as in heaven, so in earth.
11:3 Give us day by day our daily bread.
11:4 And forgive us our sins; for we also forgive every one that is
indebted to us. And lead us not into temptation; but deliver us
He asks that His will be done in Earth as in Heaven. In Heaven there
is no doubt. There is no shaky faith. There is faith and it being a
solid foundation, those there move in full faith and trust that what
He has said is right and true and will yield fullest fruit for all.
So likewise we must move in this world.
The world needs this light more than any other thing. People write to
say that these posts are off-topic in a forum such as this. But when
you look around to the world, and realize the interconnected nature of
all of the aspects of our lives, with this being a venue for communication
to those who are of these interests we share together, then it must be
quickly realize that it is not an off-topic post, but it is the most
essential type of post that there ever could be, for all need to repent
of sin to be forgiven and enter in to eternal life alive.
Do not let those around you dissuade you from speaking. But, in all
you do maintain the faith He first gave you, so that you will in time
yield the full crop that He has carved out for you.
In Him are we assured. And when we doubt we go back to the Bible and
read again of His sacrifice, His love, His offering to all of mankind
for forgiveness of sin. We need not fear what will come in this world
when we have Him as our own, for He has already defeated death, Hell,
and the grave. He has risen from the dead, and we also will rise with
The world needs to hear this message.
Rise up where you are in life, where your interests are, where you have
established relationships with people (family, co-workers, the online
forums and presences you have). Publicly proclaim your faith for Jesus
Christ, and renounce any remaining sin in your life so that your walk
may be true before Him, and not that of a hypocrite.
The world needs to hear the teaching you can give them, as there is a
great loss of the foundational knowledge of God, of sin, of punishment
for sin, of salvation, of Jesus Christ. Satan has come in from so many
different angles, enticing men to do things in the name of Jesus or in
the name of Christianity, that there is a lot of dirt associated with
the names. It is our responsibility to teach people the truth so that
they will have a chance to hear the truth and be saved. It is not our
responsibility to force people to believe, or even to convince them.
We speak, and answer their honest questions. We teach, and we clarify
their honest misunderstandings. We do not address mockers or haters,
as they are already self-condemned. This message is not for everybody,
but it is only for those who will be saved. But because we don't know
who those people are, we teach everybody and let them reveal to us by
their fruit who they are, and whose they are (God's, or Satan's).
Be strong in your faith. Be strong in your witness. Be strong and
secure in the calling that God has given you. Remember that the enemy
will come, but that when you seek ye first the Kingdom of God, and His
righteousness, and submit yourself to God and resist the devil, he will
flee from you.
Satan has no power over you in Christ. You can defeat every attack he
makes toward you by putting your faith and trust in Jesus Christ, such
that you can stand in this world in faith and you will be victorious.
I urge each of you still reading this post to come out from the places
you've been, and to seek a closer walk with your Lord and Savior. If
you are a new Christian, go to church, get involved in Bible Study
groups, spend personal time each day in devotional reading, in giving
your time to having alone time with God in prayer and supplication (in
asking Him for help). If you are a mature Christian, become the leader
you have not been. Teach others, and be ever more willing to be taught
by them, for God has given great value and experience and purpose to
each of His creations.
Test every spirit that comes to you. Do not assume that someone who
professes the name of Jesus is referring to the same Jesus you are.
Ask them to give a testimony. And when you see minor errors in their
understanding, gently correct them. But when you see large errors in
their understanding, remember that Satan comes in disguised as an
angel of light and they may not only not be saved, but may be that
very enemy coming in to destroy those in your circle of influence (your
church, co-worker Bible group, etc.). If they will not adhere to sound
doctrine, cast them out from you. That evil spirit is enticing to sin
and will destroy every good work that was begun if you let it (look at
our world as the church remained silent for decades as abortion came
about, as God was taken out of schools, out of our work places, and now
in recent months out of nearly everything).
Jesus Christ is the light of the world. He is the only light that can
shine in the darkness to lead me to life, to freedom from the bondage
of sin, and the darkness of a life lived in pursuit of sin.
Teach people these things so that they might grow in Christ personally,
and in so doing lead many others to Christ through knowledge of the
I look forward to meeting each of you in Heaven. If any of you need
strengthening in your walk, visit the most consistently holy elder in
your local church, the one who always is going back to the teachings
of Jesus Christ in his guidance. If you need help in getting started,
go to the most devout and faithful Christian co-worker or relative you
know, but ask God before you go to guide you rightly. When you ask
God for help, He will make sure you are led rightly.
Keep going back to God to ask Him for help in your life, and He will
guide and direct your paths.
Rick C. Hodgin