A great passage that describes “salvation” is Colossians 1:13-14, “For He rescued us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.” Who does God rescue, and why? The word that has been used most often over 2000 plus years is “believe”, from John 3:16, ” whoever believes will have eternal life”. The problem is that the word “believe” has been simplified to mean “the acknowledgment of existence”, and the “acknowledgment of certain theological facts to be true”. James 2:19 says this about that kind of belief, “You believe that God is one. You do well; the demons also believe, and shudder.” The Word I use now instead of believe, is love. So the question isn’t “do you believe in Jesus”, but ” do you love Jesus”. Paul makes this emphasis in 1Corinthians 16:22 “If anyone does not love the Lord, he is to be accursed.” So what dos it mean to love Jesus, how do we know if we do truly love Him? In John 14:15 Jesus is quoted as saying, “If you love Me, you will keep My commandments”. He says it again a few verses later in verse 21, “He who has My commandments and keeps them is the one who loves Me; and he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and will disclose Myself to him.” Obviously Jesus is not talking about being perfect, no one is perfect but Jesus, and He knows it, but it would be the attitude of wanting to serve Him, to obey Him, to please Him, to be like Him, and wanting, really wanting to do better when we mess up. Paul expresses that strong desire in Philippians 3:12-14. “Not that I have already obtained it or have already become perfect, but I press on so that I may lay hold of that for which also I was laid hold of by Christ Jesus. Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” Just because a person believes they are a turtle doesn’t make them one, and just because someone believes they are going to live with God forever instead of living with the devil doesn’t mean they will. It would be good to know that for sure.

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