As humans, we share common experiences. We have life, we grow, we learn, we feel pain, we ask questions, we search for happiness.
But what does it all mean?
God's plan of salvation, revealed through the Gospel of Jesus Christ, helps us understand the meaning to many perplexing questions such as "Why am I here?" "What Happens when I Die?" "Is there Life after Death?"
Your life was not an accident, nor your existence without purpose. God has a wonderful plan to bring our souls (the inner, eternal part of each of us that can not die) back to live with him in Eternity. This plan is revealed through the life of Jesus Christ.
This life is a preparation to meet God and be with Him again in eternity. God prepared this world as a place where our souls' character is forged--through happiness and adversity.
God's desire is that each Human soul find Him in this life, and spend eternity with Him. God is a wonderful, loving being with intelligence and wisdom far beyond our own. He has prepared a way for us to come to him again, someday.
That way is through a sacrifice made by Jesus Christ for each of us, and it is a beautiful story.
Sin is simply the act of mankind making choices which separate us from from God. If we ignore His advice and guidance for us, we experience sin. Sin is exerting our own will over God's will. It is a form of rebellion. Rebellion against God is a spiritual problem that causes eternal problems for our souls.
Sin separated us (humanity) from God. We all have sin. That sin is within our souls, it is part of our thoughts and very being. Unless we are changed by God and that sin is removed, sin will stay with us forever.
Having sin in our soul for ever is an eternal problem that God wanted to change. God wants mankind to be with him when this life ends. There is a new life beyond our imagination that he has prepared for those who love him.
If sin is within us, when this life ends, we can not exist in the place and state where God is. The ultimate goal of this life is simply to get back to God. We were with him before this life. But in this life, Sin became thebarrier between us and God. It prevents us from experiencing his presence.
With sin there is a consequence, a form of 'justtice.' Sin results in separation from God. The justice required of sin is simple--all who have sin on their soul have to exist away from God for eternity unless that sin is removed. Spending eternity away from God is called 'Spiritual Death.'
But God knew of sin and wanted us back--no matter what the cost.
How did God respond? He responded in the only way possible: He Himself became the means to overcome sin and the spiritual death it would cause mankind.
Since we couldn't go to God to fix the problem, God responded by coming to us instead. He came to the earth, He came from heaven where no sin existed, to earth where all the sin exists.
God stepped out of His powerful state, took on flesh and bones and blood--he stooped down to become a human--he came to be one of us. It's like we were stuck in the mud, unable to free ourselves, so he left heaven to risk getting stuck Himself, and waded out after us, just to rescue us. Love motivated him, nothing else.
God in the flesh is who we call Jesus Christ. God took on a man's flesh and blood and became Jesus Christ. Jesus is called the 'Son of God' not becuase he was a biological 'son' but because he took on flesh and submitted to the present need--he stepped out of an eternal world into our temporal world. He came after us to seek us out for this single purpose: to overcome the required justice of death and sin, so that we could live with, and be like Him in eternity.
Why did he do this?
God did it simply because His love for us exceeds anything we can comprehend. His love for you existed before you know about Him. God created you and me in His image. He shared many attributes of himself with us, one of the greatest is intelligence, and the ability to make choices based on knowledge. He shared that with no other part of his creation in this world, only humans.
God built this world with many lessons to teach. He gives us lessons in the world around us, teaching in a physical way for us to learn about spiritual things.
In life, a pattern exists that in order for things to live, something else must die. For instance, with humans, the simple act of eating to keep our bodies alive necessarily requires the 'death' of plants or animals for us to live. There is a simple spiritual lesson about our souls here too.
Here is a lesson: as a physical life dies to keep our physical bodies alive, a spiritual sacrifice was necessary for our souls' eternal life.
Our physical body is a home our spirits live within. This physical body will someday die. God isn't seeking to save this physical body; he is seeking to save our soul. The soul can never die. It will live forever in either happienss or grief.
But that is the issue: sin committed in this life affects the souls outcome for eternity. A soul with sin can never be with God. Separated from God, that soul will suffer grief for eternity.
However, a soul with sin removed is free to experience eternity with joy and happiness.
God realized it was worth it for humans to have the chance to experience that eternityof ull happiness. That is why he came to save our souls. He has promised to the souls of those saved they will receive a new body that can never die.
But saving the soul requires something very difficult. Sin created an enormous problem.
No human had the power to take care of and remove man's sin. It requires an enormous spiritual sacrifice of the highest kind--the only one ever offered in this world: God offered Himself for His creation to save and remove sin from our souls.
To allow man to be with God again, our souls needed to be saved by God and God alone. We couldn't do it ourselves or without Him. Our souls needed to be cleansed of sin. There was only one way the sin of man could be removed--it required the very sacrifice of The Creator for His creation. God became a man, and sacrificed himself, that is to say He died, as a man, for mankind.
God became a man out of his love for his creation, and allowed his own creation, people who didn't recognize who he was, to put him to death.
By dying for us, God took upon himself the spiritual sin of all mankind. Your sin included. His sacrifice unlocked a door that is offered for man to open. None of it could have happened without the blood of Jesus being shed for our sin. Amazingly, He didn't hesitate to do this for us. He wanted to do it for you.
He died for us so our souls could come back into His presence. Only God could offer that sacrifice. Nothing we could do could have paid the price of sin.
God unlocked a door by sacrificing Himself for us. But there is a response required by mankind.
Man has to be changed spiritually before we can be with God. It happens by having the Spirit of God dwell within us.
Part of God's plan to bring us back is that we can have a portion of God's very Spirit as part of us.
We can't be like God--good and righteous--without that Spirit. The Spirit of God within us is required for us to be with Him. The Good News is that it is available in this life and it is offered freely.
So what does one do to obtain God's Spirit?
The First Step simply starts with a desire to spiritually change. Not physically change, but spiritually. It starts by realizing that sin binds us from good things. If we simply desire to change, that is where we start. God says we can call on Him. He will bring us to learn of faith in Jesus. Faith means choosing the ways of Jesus to guide our life, and believing that He dies for us, and remembering that sacrifice for us. If we simply desire that, it is like planting a good seed. It can and will grow into something mighty in our lives. The next step is to follow God's advice for how to nourish it.
We have the ability to spiritually communicate with God and listen for his guidance. That potential is built into each one of us, whether we have ever discovered it or not.
We can learn about Jesus by talking to God in our hearts and minds--we call it prayer. We can read about Him in scriptures. We can learn about others in scriptures and history books--some who have obeyed and the results of those choices, and others who have not chosen Him, and the consequences of their choice.
If we desire change for good--that is, to be like Jesus, we begin to experience something called faith. When we try the things that Jesus says to think about and do, we aquire faith
Faith in Jesus, or believing in his words and following His laws, will cause us to see that we don't want to be sinful in this life and we'll choose to turn from Sin. Turning from Sin is called Repentance. Repentance essentially it means 'thinking differently'. Choosing good instead of bad, and letting that choice govern our life.
If we have faith and turn from sin, God offers two special responses when we choose to follow Him.
The first response, after our 'faith' and 'repentance' is our response--it is called Baptism. Baptism is where one is immersed in water by a person who's been commissioned by God. Baptism is our witness to God that we want to die to sin and follow him. It is another symbol God designed where the one being baptized symbolically 'dies' (lying backward into water, as to enter the grave) and emerges a spiritually new being in Christ. Jesus offers to 'wash away' our sins spiritually through baptism and our repentance.
Jesus was baptized too. Not because he needed sins removed, but to show us the example we are to follow.
Would you follow Jesus into the waters of Baptism? Baptism needs to be something you knowingly choose to do. Baptism is saying 'I want to follow him by choice.'
Baptism is also like a marriage ceremony--we bind ourselves to Him, and as a woman takes the name of a man in marriage, we take the name of Jesus in Baptism. That means we stand for him and proclaim allegience to Him for our lives.
Salvation is a word used to mean 'living with God in eternity.' Salvation is not simply something that happens because we were baptized. But baptism is a statement and promise we make that helps bind us to God and say that 'we want salvation--we want to be with God in this life and the life to come.'
Salvation is possible because of God's complete sacrifice for us. To claim it, we can have make our complete response to him.
He made and offers a very important Gift, given according to our response to Him.
When we make that promise and public act of confession of sin and baptism, we open ourselves to something very important: we can receive His Spirit to be a part of us. It is hard for us to understand. But it is like a part of the mind and will of God now lives within us and teaches, guides, protects, cautions, and comforts us in all things.
God's Spirit is called many things, sometimes the Comforter or the Holy Ghost. Receiving this Spirit is another baptism called the 'Baptism of the Holy Ghost' or 'Baptism by Fire.' It just means that our soul now receives a spiritual renewal/cleansing like our bodies received in water baptism.
Providing His Spirit to dwell in us is what God does to respond to our choice to follow Him.
There are examples in scripture where people received the spiritual gift of God's Spirit. God is a mighty God and desires to give His Spirit to those who call on Him. Having His Spirit in us is what ultimately changes us from the insde out, and it is our ticket into heaven, in a sense, if we follow him through our lives.
God has bestowed His gift on many people at various times and ways. But the 'normal' plan that the Gift of Gods Spirit (also called 'The Holy Ghost') is bestowed upon Jesus' followers after their water baptism.
In the Bible and other scripture, that spiritual 'Baptism and Gift of the Holy Ghost' was, and still is, given to people after a special prayer where those ordained with priesthood lay hands on the head of him or her desiring this spiritual baptism.
Spiritual Baptism normally happens for a person after water baptism (although for some, they received this Spiritual Baptism before their water baptism, and that was God's doing too). But most commonly, after water baptism, a sincere prayer is asked by those ordained that God would bestow this gift of the Holy Ghost upon the recipient by those ordained.
The Spirit of God, like a seed, is planted in the soul of that individual. And a spiritual door is unlocked again.
We now have access to the Holy Ghost to lead and guide us. This is huge. But it is like another unlocked door. It is unlocked; yet we have to choose to open it. We have to consciously choose to have God lead and guide us by the gift of the Holy Ghost. Having the Gift of the Holy Ghost is like being with someone who is 'ultra polite.' They never come in when not asked, they never stay when not welcomed.
In our life with God's Spirit within us, we have to choose to let Him in. If we do, God, through His Spirit dwelling in us, can do great things through us. Gifts and miracles are possible and even promised. But even more importantly, this Spirit of God in us provides a personal miracle--it provides the ability to have a perfect compass leading us between right and wrong life choices.
As we become followers of Jesus, our life isn't suddenly made easy and problems don't immediately disappear. But we are armed with a stronger spiritual strength and in our life, we can live victoriously, knowing that in the end of time, and end of our life, God will win. We will win! He will win us back to be with Him. This is the ultimate prize. This is the meaning of 'salvation.'
If this life, we will be challenged to 'endure' to the end. That means to stay with God, following His leadings throughout our lives. He wants us to 'bear fruit' in this life. To share in good works that promote His purposes.
The days of this world will someday end. The souls of all people ever created will be brought to him. God will judge all mankind at the last day. The Bible teaches we will be judged for the works we did in this life, and what they told about our soul's real desires.
Happliy, God shares what will 'be on the test' that day.' That is to say, he tells what things he will judge us by.
Judgement is somewhat simple: He will simply judge those who have been changed from those who haven't. The bible teaches that those who have been changed will have done good works--they will have visited the sick, helped those in need, willingly sacrificed of their life for the cause of Jesus.
These things simply show that one 'changed.' If we were changed by His Spirit in this Life, we live with Him again. Those that never knew him in this life will also have a chance to learn and choose him in a future time during His reign on the earth, before the end. He is a loving Father to provide a way back for all to have a fair chance.
If your heart is stirred, would you seek Him now? Seek Him by calling on Him in prayer and seek him through study. You can use this website as one way to study and get started.
Along with salvation, God's word is full of exciting descriptions of past as well as future events for the world. God Has inspired people through out time and ages to write words of truth. Most commonly, people know of the Bible as a collection of truth written by people long ago in the middle East. The Bible is most famous because in the land of that record, the Saviour, Jesus Christ, was born and lived 33 years before His sacrificial death.
Many people throughout time from many nations have been inspired to write of God. A few of those other books are known and testify of God.
The scriptures tell of God promises to return to the earth as Jesus in the last days. When He does, he will gather His people physically and spiritually. God has made promises called 'Covenants' to do this--covenants are promises which God won't break no matter what we do in response.
Jesus has covenanted to be with people in the last days to fulfill promises he made since the first days of the earth.
Scriptures tell us the path back to God (i.e. Salvation). That is the most important lesson we can learn. They also explain about events that are happening now in the world, and will happen in days to come. It is all part of His plan. Every word, every promise He has made to humanity--and to you--will be fulfilled.
You are invited to learn more of the plan of salvation and the covenants of Jesus Christ here in this website. You can learn of God--His salvation and promises--by words given to and written the Jews (The Jewish record is called 'The Bible'). You can read the Bible here at this website and use tools to search its words.
Also, you can read of people who were descendents of Joseph of Egypt, and later became ancient inhabitants of the Americas. These ancient Americans knew of God and loved Jesus. They also wrote about things to come in the last days (their words are written in The Book of Mormon).
Finally, you can study of people who have lived in recent generations and received guidance from God for our day. They have shared those laws and history (the Doctrine and Covenants and also Church History). This is the story of the church restored in the last days. It is a true story of God's desire to reveal himself in truth to a world that has lost some plain and precious meanings of the God.
This website shares these writings and tools freely for all those who will open their hearts, seeking in sincerety to Know the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. He is The Living God who can and will fulfill all His words to mankind, and to you. He is Your God. He knows you by name. He wants you to know Him personally and share a personal relationship with Him.
Seek Him diligently and you shall find Him. He is already seeking you. He loves you and wants to share eternity with you. Find Him and make your covenant to share it with Him.
May God bless you as you journey on your path to Him and all truth. Amen.
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|Watch your Thoughts,|
|They become Words...|
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|They become Habits...|
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|They become Character...|
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|It becomes your Destiny.|