The world is full of noise and distractions, which means who ever shouts the loudest gets heard. So when it comes to faith, business people have been bludgeoned in to thinking they should ignore faith because they’re too intelligent and too busy for all that and are therefore particularly adept at side-stepping anything to do with faith.
For me, I look at this faith "thing" as good from God and bad from satan. Continue reading and see what you think by the end...
Faith vs Happy Clappy
The last thing I wanted was to be connected to a sandal and sock wearing happy-clappy lot. You have to read my testimony for the full story, but basically that’s what I did encounter, but it certainly didn’t stop me. I knew there was more to this than met the eye, especially as different Churches have different opinions and now I know that opinions can be damaging in many ways if you don’t find out stuff for yourself.
Only now after my own searching, study and answered prayer can I write with confidence about God and Jesus. My faith has grown because I get it and Jesus proved it to me. But that’s all well and good you might say, but it has no impact and relevance on anyone else, it’s a bit like saying “yes, and!” or “and I should care because!”
I don’t believe in God or Sin
Let's say that you don't believe in anything. Not God and therefore not Satan. Only believe what you can see and touch and what science says. Well I'm a Christian and to offer an explanation would take way too long but consider this:
The odds that all the prophecies and events in the Bible happening would be as likely as throwing thousands of letters up in the air and them landing to read like a copy of Shakespeare's Hamlet.
So in light of the above I wouldn't waste your valuable time trying to disprove the existence of God. I believe we all know instinctively that there is something greater than ourselves and that we might be answerable to that ‘something’ at some stage in our existence.
Taking one for the Team
Starting at the beginning; for anyone to who wants to get to know God, they first have to begin a relationship with Jesus and to do that, as a logically thinking business person, we have to know what Jesus’ purpose was on this earth before he died. If you don’t grasp the foundational elements the rest will always collapse like a pack of cards.
When Jesus died on the cross, he took away the sins of the world and the power Satan had over us, he disarmed Satan. So you ask, why did Jesus have to die for our sins in the first place and what does it mean to you and me now, if anything?
Laws & Sacrifices
Back in the early books of the Bible, Leviticus and numbers, God gave Moses the Law (the basis of the laws we now live by) and in the Law it talks about sacrificing animals to atone for, to pay for our sins. The Bible states what sacrifice was to be offered for what sin. The Israelites had to lay their hands on the animal and by doing so transferred their sins to the animal. The animal’s blood was then sprinkled on the altar and then the animal was subsequently burnt.
We must understand that a sin is a supernatural and physical event; it can exist in the form of something that is said or a physical action against someone. In order to be accurate about this, there are three categories of sin.
- Sin itself is an act of disobedience toward God, something we do by ourselves
- Transgression is when we sin against someone else
- Iniquity is/are the sins of our forefathers that are passed down through generations.
Constantly our actions and words are held accountable. They impact the world and our environment.
When the Bible says that Jesus died for our sins, it means that he took on himself the physical and supernatural repercussions of our sins as Jesus became the blood sacrifice for us, once and for all time. This meant that the whole animal sacrifice ‘thing’ was to be done away with because Jesus became our substitutionary sacrifice.
Bearing in mind Jesus was fully man, can you imagine the courage he had to possess go through with this selfless act.
All Power and Authority to Adam!
What we also have to remember is that God gave all power, dominion and authority to Adam. It was like God leased the earth to Adam and therefore everything that happened from that moment onwards on the earth was down to Adam. For example if you get a mortgage on property, the lending bank does not tell you how to behave in your house! Well, nor does God. He only told Adam don't eat the fruit!
At the point of Adam eating the fruit, Adam reassigned the lease on the earth to Satan and from then on the seed of Adam was corrupted and sin entered the world.
To put this in perspective I say good comes from God and bad comes from Satan, we are either leaning towards God on leaning towards Satan there’s no in between, halfway or third option.
What are the Repercussions of Sin?
Christians talk about salvation and being saved; well it can sound like Christianese (another language!), but what does it really mean.
Well before we pin our colours to the mast and acknowledge what we believe, we have to know what the repercussions are if any. Sinning means that we miss the mark. The stage or level of behaviour that has been set for us by God.
If we refuse to ask for or don’t believe in forgiveness for sin, the repercussions are many and varied! Firstly we open ourselves up to being directed down a path not of God. Whilst we may do the odd good deed, we become less and less able to fight off the bad stuff, i.e. smoking, alcohol, drugs, violent films, aggressive behaviour, short temper, short fuse, sickness, health issues, mental issues, work problems, relationship issues and the list goes on.
Sin opens the door to the enemy to try and influence you. Not knowing to repent or turn away from sin doesn’t mean that you’ll become a mass murderer, but it does mean that you’ll never know what life is like being forgiven and being connected to God through Jesus.
The end result? Well, hell is one explanation, it’s fairly well recognised as the place one goes to if one does not make ones peace with God and believe. But only once we realise the significance of being connected to God in the first place can we fully appreciate what it would be like to be separated from him.
There are Scriptures that describe hell as lakes of fire, wailing and gnashing of teeth. I believe that Hell must be in its worst form the complete opposite of Heaven. And it has been presented to us as a deterrent, something to egg us on to want o understand salvation and Jesus.
Facing the Ultimate Test
It seems to me that we are being tested. In fact, this whole time on earth is a training ground, preparing us for something far greater when we leave and enter eternity.
We are all given the same seasons, situations and struggles. We will have access to the same information (especially in the West) so from Gods point of view, we’re all given the same chances to understand and to get with the program.
We can only base our beliefs on what we have been presented with and what both history and evidential proof can offer.
I'm not going to compare other religions against the faith Christianity, but it is important to differentiate faith from religion and religion from ideologies like Islam.
Proving Jesus, Proving God
So when it comes to proof, there is overwhelming evidence for the existence of Jesus Christ, both in secular and biblical history. Perhaps the greatest evidence that Jesus did exist is the fact that literally thousands of Christians in the first century A.D., including the twelve apostles, were willing to give their lives as martyrs for Jesus Christ. People will die for what they believe to be true, but no one will die for what they know to be a lie. In addition to this are the prophecies in the Bible which have come to pass.
The Bible contains more than 300 prophecies about Jesus alone — all written a thousand years before he was born. The Bible prophesised about when he’d be born, where he’d be born, and how he’d be born. He couldn’t have manipulated his birth to fulfil those prophecies.
It also predicted how he would die. A thousand years before Jesus died, David described Jesus’ death on the cross in one of the psalms. He didn’t use the word “crucifixion” because no one knew that word then. Long before the Romans were even thinking about crucifying people, David described it.
Only God could have known that.
What are the odds that I could make 300 predictions about you and every one of them would come true? It’s so astronomical you couldn’t write the number down. It takes more faith to believe that the Bible’s prophecies were a coincidence than to believe that God planned them.
But for me personally, it's much simpler. I know what God has done and is doing in my life and with others who are affecting me. So I can constantly see Gods hand in my life and see things in black and white when it comes to faith in Jesus.
He was needed to put mankind back on track after Satan's interference with Adam and Eve when he established sin in the world.
Jesus Being Perfect
Jesus had to be perfect and without sin in order to defeat Satan so he could NOT have been born of human seed in the natural way as we understand conception. Adam’s seed was corrupted by sin by Satan and therefore this corrupted seed was handed down generation after generation.
Perhaps Satan thought he could defeat Jesus because he thought Jesus was born ‘naturally’. Satan knew the offspring of the Nephelim (Genesis 6:4), prior to Noah and the flood, were despised by God, as sexual relations between angels and humans was forbidden and so God sent the flood to wipe them out and intended to start again.
Multiple prophets spoke in to being the Immaculate Conception. This process nearly got thwarted by Zechariah husband of Elisabeth who gave birth to John the Baptist. The angel Gabriel shut Zechariah up until after Johns birth because he spoke against what was being planned i.e. Zechariah did not believe Elisabeth would have a child so late in life and Gabriel knew that if he continued he would say something that would mean John the Baptist would not baptise Jesus and. There is a Proverb that says “there is death and life in the power of the tongue…” (Proverbs 18:22).
Jesus used Eternal Law Against Satan
Even when Jesus started his ministry and was baptised by John the Baptist, Satan tried to tempt Jesus three times and each time Jesus knocked Satan back by using the truth based on Bible scripture from the Old Testament, and Satan went away!
God made Adam, and therefore us, to have a relationship with him. Not to live then die. Satan introduced sin and death to mankind, not God! So, in order to overcome sin and defeat death, a supernatural event had to take place which was the death and resurrection of Jesus.
God’s Plan will not be Stopped
Jesus, in the form of a human man, chose to die. He had an assignment that he knew was going to be painful.
But God knew it had to be done. God established a set of Eternal Rules and Laws that had to be adhered to, by him and by Satan. Satan’s domain, Hell, had to be invaded by Jesus. There was no other way. And so Jesus had to die in order to covertly enter hell.
God is the most purposeful God. Nothing is a coincidence. When Jesus was crucified, the blood sacrifice was complete. His blood was released into our atmosphere and we are now, still, able to appropriate his blood in our everyday lives.
This means to know what his blood achieved and to know how it continues to impact everything we do. It can be likened to a command, but really it is a statement of faith that enables the power of God inside us to breakdown the layers of doubt that wants to subdue Gods power through us.
Creating the Ultimate Hack
Jesus overcame death, defeated sin, atoned, paid for what we had done. In a nutshell he created a hack, an event, that meant that we were no longer subject to the wages of sin and death or the effects of sin on our eternal soul. Can you see why this is not overly straightforward, yet so important.
One of the over arching factors is that Satan is still very much alive and active, you only have to look at Islam and the Koran. Jesus didn't kill Satan (perhaps because Satan continues to be part of our training?), he only took his power and authority and returned that power and authority to us, the present-day Adams’ and Eves’.
We still have to be wary of Satan and know he and his Demons are still whispering to us, trying to get us to sin and to separate us from God.
But the hack, the event, means that once we acknowledge Jesus as Lord, as our commander in chief, and submit ourselves to him, we can simply ask for forgiveness when we sin and he is gracious to give it, no questions asked.
So Why Care about Jesus?
To live without guilt, shame, fear or regrets is quite an amazing existence. We don't always get it right but there is so much to uncover and explore about our relationship with God.
We all sin and therefore we all need a saviour. So when it comes to Jesus, he is greater that David Cameron, The Queen, a Pop Star, a Pope or Business Mogul. I certainly wouldn’t call Richard Branson “Lord of my Life”. No!, everyone of these “types” of people are also to submit to Jesus, just like you and me.
Don't ever forget, young or old, male or female, God wants you for eternity and Satan wants you dead.
So no matter where you are right now, when it comes to sin and deciding on your future, there are 1.5 billion people on the earth who decided that Jesus is most definitely worth caring about. It seriously saddens me to think that so many people dismiss Jesus without so much as a cursory thought! But we’re praying for them, all the time. This is too important to be deceived by a distraction.
Jesus is the only one. He won't force you to believing him, he will allow you your free will, but there comes a time when you have to make a decision, are you for God or for Satan? There is no third option.
God Loved Us So Much…
It's Christmas this month when we are reminded that God loved us so much he sent his only Son in human form, knowing that to complete his master plan, Jesus would have to go through the pain of death to fulfil his plans for us.
We had to be given a saviour who would give us the tools necessary to complete the training here on Earth. We couldn't get back into a right relationship with God any other way. So because of Jesus death we were made right with God which is what righteous means. And because of being made right with God we are also made holy, sanctified.
Can you feel it yet?
As a business owner or if you’re in any other walk of life, if you haven't been convinced about Jesus, now it's probably a good time to start, especially if you can feel that heaviness in your chest!
Say the prayer below out loud because there are angels are watching you and waiting for you to say the words and when you do, they will honour you and welcome you as will Jesus.
In fact, Jesus has been waiting for you to make up your mind since you were able to. If you got this far reading this article, bless you and I pray for you that you will say the prayer of salvation below and be welcomed in to God's amazing family.
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