The Lord is pressing upon me to examine what I believe; to write it out; study it and make sure I know what it consists of.
I spent the day today with two of my very closest friends, one of those friends' husband and another friend of my friend. Most of the day was spent in the car as we drove to visit a place where my friend and her husband had bought some building lots. For a good portion of the time, I distanced myself from the conversation and just listened to what was being said. Keep in mind as you read this that these people are good people, kind people, caring and loving friends that I have known a long time.
I heard a conversation about astrological signs and personality traits acquired by being born a particular sign; I heard a conversation about "energy"; one about past lives; another about a dream in which "color therapy" was used for healing purposes and a comment about how the earth "won't keep spinning that long....", and one single person besides me used the name of Jesus all day long.
When we returned, after dinner, I sat down to skim through the internet news. Boy, it was depressing. As I read the headlines on the Drudgereport, all I could think was, "If this isn't an indication that Jesus' return is imminent, then I don't know what is". I shared a couple of headlines with my friends which brought about a conversation with them about the "end of the world" and 2012.
I mumbled some stuff about believing every word in the Bible was inspired by God and that I felt we were watching many prophecies for the end times
being fulfilled right before our eyes.
Needless to say, my friends and I are not on the exact same page where faith and salvation are concerned, and when I got into bed, the holy spirit convicted me of inability to speak clearly, concisely and with conviction my beliefs about God and what is happening all around me. I spent at least two hours struggling in prayer with God about many things and I felt the Lord urging me to write it down. It's like He's telling me that the time for being blase' about my faith is done. It's time for me to be specific and have the ability to clearly tell others what I have based my beliefs on and my faith in.
So, at the Lord's prompting and for my own sanity, this is what I have come up with:
I believe in the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. I believe that God created everything and everyone. I believe that God created mankind to fellowship with Him, love Him and to be His children. I believe that to disobey God is equal to sin and that to sin is equal to death. I believe that the Bible is the inspired Word of God, preserved and supernaturally protected and made understandable to man by God's holy spirit. I believe that the Hebrews/Jews were the people God chose to bless the world because of the faith of one of their ancestors, Abraham. I believe ALL the stories in the Bible; stories of faith, dishonor, shame, glory, victory, sin, overcoming, miraculous rescues, miraculous destructions, etc., ALL of them.
I believe that Jesus Christ IS God incarnate. I believe that He was born of a virgin by the power of the holy spirit, that He lived upon the earth as a flesh and blood human being for 33 years, was crucified, dead, buried, and resurrected and that He is now seated in the heavens on a throne at the right hand of God the Father. I believe He came to reconcile mankind to God by making atonement for our disobedience/sin and to free us from death. I believe He is THE WAY, THE TRUTH AND THE LIFE AND THE ONLY WAY TO GOD. I believe that when you believe in your heart, confess with your mouth, and repent of your sins, you are marked by Jesus as His and given His holy spirit to dwell within you. I believe it is His desire that we die daily to our wants and submit our lives to Him doing what He wants and directs us to do.
I believe that He is returning to overturn the governments of men and to establish the Kingdom of God here on earth for 1000 years. I believe the earth will be dissolved and there will be a new heaven and a new earth and God will reign in the midst of His people from the New Jerusalem. I believe we are on borrowed time before His return.
As I wrote this, I became aware of just how complex my beliefs are and how easy it would be to question them and that for me to write down all the things I believe about God would take a lot of time. I began questioning them myself. I came to the conclusion that that we must first be sure about the foundation of what we believe and then examine them in light of the Bible everyday and strengthen them by prayer and asking God to show us the truth so that we cannot be deceived. What will you do if you are questioned? Do you know what you believe? Will you be able to stand on the things you believe in? Are you so sure in what you believe that you would die for it?