Copyright 1994 - 2018 Bill's Bible Basics
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Published On :
September 16, 1997
Last Updated :
December 16, 2013
Constant Decision-Making, Our Most Important Decision, Accept Christ, Life And Death Or Blessing And Cursing, Jesus Christ Is The Only Way To Achieve Eternal Life, Choose Whom You Wish To Serve, Beware Of The World And Satan's Temporal Offerings, People Blinded By Satan Who Choose Darkness Over Light And Death Over Life, Jesus Is The Light Of The World, Adopted Sons And Daughters Of God, Members Of God's Royal Household And Holy Nation Of Light, Children Of Light, Cast Off Works Of Darkness And No Fellowship With Darkness, God's Symbolic Candlesticks: Don't Hide Your Spiritual Light Under A Bushel
Decision-making is a very important part of our lives. It is a process which we repeatedly perform every single day. In fact, we probably make many more decisions than most of us even realize. Our brain is constantly sending signals via our nervous system to all the different parts of our body, telling one muscle to contract, while telling another one to expand. Through our eyes, our brain quickly calculates the size, distance and speed of objects without our even being consciously aware of it. It is in fact a natural, automatic function of the wonderful creation, which is our body.
On a more conscious level, from the minute that we wake up in the morning, we begin to make decisions for the day which lies ahead of us. The first one we make is whether or not we are even going to get out of bed when the alarm clock goes off. If we do, we must then decide what to wear, or what to have for breakfast, or whatever else might happen to be a part of our morning ritual. Throughout the day we will make many more decisions, some conscious, and some not. We might decide what to buy when we go grocery shopping; or whether or not we have the time to check the post office during our lunch break; or if we should pick up that hitchhiker standing out there in the rain; or if we can make it through that traffic light before it turns red. So we make a wide variety of decisions during a single day in mere seconds.
However, did you know that every day of the year millions of people are required to make one decision which is so vitally important that it will affect the remainder of their lives? Sadly, it is such an important decision, yet so many people are so foolish as to make the wrong choice, and to actually turn down the amazing offer which is being extended to them.
Perhaps you already realize that I am not just talking about an opportunity at a new job that you have been so intent on trying to acquire; or a promotion at your current place of employment; or even a pay raise which will help to lighten your financial burdens in these difficult and trying times. I am of course referring to an opportunity to accept God's free Gift of Eternal Life, which has been made available to all of us through the Atoning Sacrifice of His dear Son, Jesus Christ. The decision to accept Jesus as our Lord and Savior is a very important one indeed, and it should not be taken lightly.
I am reminded of a particular scene from the Old Testament Book of Deuteronomy in which the Patriarch Moses presented the Israelites with an important decision as well. It was a matter of life and death, and blessing or cursing. Consider the following verse:
"I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live:"
Deuteronomy 30:19, KJV
If you are a Bible-believing Christian, then you will already know that the way to life -- that is, Eternal Life -- is none other than through Jesus Christ who is God's beloved Son, and the only Savior of the world. As Jesus Himself informs us in so many verses that are found in the Gospel of John, He is the only Giver of Eternal Life, as He was authorized to do by His very own Father, as we see here:
"For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life."
John 3:16, KJV
"But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life."
John 4:14, KJV
"Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice, And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation."
John 5:28-29, KJV
"All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out."
John 6:37, KJV
"The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly . . . And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand."
John 10:10, 28, KJV
"Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live:"
John 11:25, KJV
"Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me."
John 14:6, KJV
"These words spake Jesus, and lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, Father, the hour is come; glorify thy Son, that thy Son also may glorify thee: As thou hast given him power over all flesh, that he should give eternal life to as many as thou hast given him. And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent."
John 17:1-3, KJV
By accepting Jesus' loving Atonement for our sins, not only do we choose Eternal Life over Eternal Damnation, but we also acknowledge who we wish to be the Master of our life. Both Joshua and the Prophet Elijah likewise presented the ancient Israelites with an important choice thousands of years ago when they asked them who they wished to serve, as we can determine by the following verses:
"And if it seem evil unto you to serve the LORD, choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD."
Joshua 24:15, KJV
"And Elijah came unto all the people, and said, How long halt ye between two opinions? if the LORD be God, follow him: but if Baal, then follow him. And the people answered him not a word."
1 Kings 18:21, KJV
The New Testament likewise contains a number of verses which challenge us to choose who or what we wish to serve. We can either serve God and Jesus Christ, and live, or else we can choose the Devil's world and all of the temporal pleasures which he offers to his spiritually dead subjects. Consider the following relevant verses which clearly warn us to not be a part of this present evil world, and to not be enticed by the temporal things of this world, and take heed:
"No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon."
Matthew 6:24, KJV
"No servant can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon."
Luke 16:13, KJV
"If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you."
John 15:19, KJV
"I have given them thy word; and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil."
John 17:14-15, KJV
"Jesus answered, My kingdom is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now is my kingdom not from hence."
John 18:36, KJV
"Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness?"
Romans 6:16, KJV
"And they that use this world, as not abusing it: for the fashion of this world passeth away."
1 Corinthians 7:31, KJV
"While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal."
2 Corinthians 4:18, KJV
"Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty."
2 Corinthians 6:17-18, KJV
"If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth."
Colossians 3:1-2, KJV
"But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. And having food and raiment let us be therewith content. But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition. For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows. But thou, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness. Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses. I give thee charge in the sight of God, who quickeneth all things, and before Christ Jesus, who before Pontius Pilate witnessed a good confession; That thou keep this commandment without spot, unrebukeable, until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ:"
1 Timothy 6:6-14, KJV
"No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier."
2 Timothy 2:4, KJV
"These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off, and were persuaded of them, and embraced them, and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth. For they that say such things declare plainly that they seek a country. And truly, if they had been mindful of that country from whence they came out, they might have had opportunity to have returned. But now they desire a better country, that is, an heavenly: wherefore God is not ashamed to be called their God: for he hath prepared for them a city."
Hebrews 11:13-16, KJV
"Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God."
James 4:4, KJV
"Wherefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for such things, be diligent that ye may be found of him in peace, without spot, and blameless."
2 Peter 3:14, KJV
"Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world."
1 John 2:15-16, KJV
"Lest Satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices."
2 Corinthians 2:11, KJV
Sadly, as we have seen, not everyone chooses the Way of Life over the way of death. Some people foolishly prefer to walk in darkness, blinded by and following the false god of this wayward world -- Satan -- and enticed by the physical things which he offers them, rather than come to the glorious Light of God through Jesus Christ. Consider the following verses:
"And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved."
John 3:19-20, KJV
"In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them."
2 Corinthians 4:4, KJV
"Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience:"
Ephesians 2:2, KJV
On the other hand, those people who are wise will resist the Devil's lies, deceptions, temptations and darkness, and will embrace Jesus Christ -- who is the true Light of the world -- instead. Consider the following pertinent verses which reveal how Jesus is indeed the prophesied Light of the world:
"In him was life; and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not. There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. The same came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all men through him might believe. He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light. That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world."
John 1:4-9, KJV
"Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life."
John 8:12, KJV
"As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world."
John 9:5, KJV
"Then Jesus said unto them, Yet a little while is the light with you. Walk while ye have the light, lest darkness come upon you: for he that walketh in darkness knoweth not whither he goeth . . . I am come a light into the world, that whosoever believeth on me should not abide in darkness."
John 12:35, 46, KJV
"And the city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it: for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof. And the nations of them which are saved shall walk in the light of it: and the kings of the earth do bring their glory and honour into it. And the gates of it shall not be shut at all by day: for there shall be no night there."
Revelation 21:23-25, KJV
"I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches. I am the root and the offspring of David, and the bright and morning star."
Revelation 22:16, KJV
Following are some additional verses that are found in the pages of the Old Testament which were clearly fulfilled by Jesus Christ, as even the Apostles Paul and Barnabas gave witness in the Book of Acts:
"The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light: they that dwell in the land of the shadow of death, upon them hath the light shined."
Isaiah 9:2, KJV
"And the light of Israel shall be for a fire, and his Holy One for a flame: and it shall burn and devour his thorns and his briers in one day;"
Isaiah 10:17, KJV
"Thus saith God the LORD, he that created the heavens, and stretched them out; he that spread forth the earth, and that which cometh out of it; he that giveth breath unto the people upon it, and spirit to them that walk therein: I the LORD have called thee in righteousness, and will hold thine hand, and will keep thee, and give thee for a covenant of the people, for a light of the Gentiles; To open the blind eyes, to bring out the prisoners from the prison, and them that sit in darkness out of the prison house."
Isaiah 42:5-7, KJV
"And he said, It is a light thing that thou shouldest be my servant to raise up the tribes of Jacob, and to restore the preserved of Israel: I will also give thee for a light to the Gentiles, that thou mayest be my salvation unto the end of the earth."
Isaiah 49:6, KJV
"Then Paul and Barnabas waxed bold, and said, It was necessary that the word of God should first have been spoken to you: but seeing ye put it from you, and judge yourselves unworthy of everlasting life, lo, we turn to the Gentiles. For so hath the Lord commanded us, saying, I have set thee to be a light of the Gentiles, that thou shouldest be for salvation unto the ends of the earth."
Acts 13:46-47, KJV
"Having therefore obtained help of God, I continue unto this day, witnessing both to small and great, saying none other things than those which the prophets and Moses did say should come: That Christ should suffer, and that he should be the first that should rise from the dead, and should shew light unto the people, and to the Gentiles."
Acts 26:22-23, KJV
"This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all."
1 John 1:5, KJV
God's Word likewise informs us that once we recognize our sinful condition, as well as our need for Forgiveness and Salvation, and choose to accept Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, and the only valid means of Atonement for our sins, we become the born-again, adopted Children of God by faith, and full-fledged members of God's Royal Household. Consider these inspiring verses which verify these points:
"But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:"
John 1:12, KJV
"For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father."
Romans 8:15, KJV
"And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body."
Romans 8:23, KJV
"To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons."
Galatians 4:5, KJV
"Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will,"
Ephesians 1:5, KJV
"Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God;"
Ephesians 2:19, KJV
"He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son."
Revelation 21:7, KJV
As the born-again, adopted Children of God, the Bible informs us that we are then clothed with the marvellous armor of the glorious Light of God. As I point out in the articles called "Once Upon a Time: A True Story" and "Many Are Called But Few Are Chosen", the Scriptures also refer to this as our Robe of Righteousness. Not only that, but we become citizens of God's holy Nation of Light. Furthermore, we become both the Sons and Daughters of God, as well as His Children of Light, as we can easily determine by the following verses:
"The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light."
Romans 13:12, KJV
"For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ."
2 Corinthians 4:6, KJV
"And the lord commended the unjust steward, because he had done wisely: for the children of this world are in their generation wiser than the children of light."
Luke 16:8, KJV
"While ye have light, believe in the light, that ye may be the children of light. These things spake Jesus, and departed, and did hide himself from them."
John 12:36, KJV
"But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:"
1 Peter 2:9, KJV
"For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light:"
Ephesians 5:8, KJV
"Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness."
1 Thessalonians 5:5, KJV
Once we have accepted Jesus Christ, are bathed in the Light of God's Truth, and become the Children of Light, as we saw a moment ago, the Apostle Paul informs us that we are no longer to engage in the works of darkness. As Paul writes, we are to "cast off the works of darkness". Furthermore, we are not to have fellowship with the Children of Darkness; that is, with those people who knowingly reject Jesus Christ. Following are some additional verses which warn us to flee from the works of darkness, from the children of darkness, and from their leader, the Prince of Darkness; that is, Satan himself:
"Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?"
2 Corinthians 6:14, KJV
"Neither give place to the devil."
Ephesians 4:27, KJV
"And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them."
Ephesians 5:11, KJV
"Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son:"
Colossians 1:13, KJV
"Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you."
James 4:7, KJV
"If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth:"
1 John 1:6, KJV
By accepting Jesus Christ, not only do we become the adopted Sons and Daughters of God and the Children of Light, but as time passes, and we become more knowledgeable of God's Word, we are also transformed into bearers of the Light ourselves. In other words, we become symbolic candlesticks which bear God's spiritual light. This means that the time comes when we must be willing to share the Light of God's Truth with other people, and not try to hide it under a bushel. We must become witnesses and openly confess our faith as we see by the following set of verses:
"Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven."
Matthew 5:14-16, KJV
"No man, when he hath lighted a candle, putteth it in a secret place, neither under a bushel, but on a candlestick, that they which come in may see the light. The light of the body is the eye: therefore when thine eye is single, thy whole body also is full of light; but when thine eye is evil, thy body also is full of darkness. Take heed therefore that the light which is in thee be not darkness. If thy whole body therefore be full of light, having no part dark, the whole shall be full of light, as when the bright shining of a candle doth give thee light."
Luke 11:33-36, KJV
"That ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world;"
Philippians 2:15, KJV
"And I will give power unto my two witnesses, and they shall prophesy a thousand two hundred and threescore days, clothed in sackcloth. These are the two olive trees, and the two candlesticks standing before the God of the earth."
Revelation 11:3-4, KJV
"And I turned to see the voice that spake with me. And being turned, I saw seven golden candlesticks; And in the midst of the seven candlesticks one like unto the Son of man, clothed with a garment down to the foot, and girt about the paps with a golden girdle . . . The mystery of the seven stars which thou sawest in my right hand, and the seven golden candlesticks. The seven stars are the angels of the seven churches: and the seven candlesticks which thou sawest are the seven churches."
Revelation 1:12-13, 20, KJV
"Unto the angel of the church of Ephesus write; These things saith he that holdeth the seven stars in his right hand, who walketh in the midst of the seven golden candlesticks;"
Revelation 2:1, KJV
"That if thou shalt CONFESS WITH THY MOUTH the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and WITH THE MOUTH confession is made unto salvation."
Romans 10:9-10, KJV
"And for me, that utterance may be given unto me, that I may OPEN MY MOUTH BOLDLY, to make known the mystery of the gospel, For which I am an ambassador in bonds: that therein I may SPEAK BOLDLY, as I ought to speak."
Ephesians 6:19-20, KJV
Please go to part two for the conclusion of this article.
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