Heaven Coach

How To Get To Heaven

Religious Vision At Ten Thousand Feet

December 02, 2011 By: alanpg Category: Religion

view from 10,000 feet

Religious Vision At Ten Thousand Feet

When you are on the ground and look around your religious belief might seem reasonable. A well developed religion can be very difficult to assess correctly at ground level. The point of the analogy is to help truth-seekers realize they need to understand if what they believe religiously is correct. In the picture above, you are on the ground in the midst of tall buildings. Your visibility is limited and all you see and know comes from those in your belief system. You are in effect being controlled. The control limits your ability to see beyond their teachings. Over history that control has been physical, fearful and deeply psychological. Most often today the control has been done by brainwashing, indoctrination and doing things that build your dependence on the organization. Frequently, that dependence can be associated with your family and/or friends and your desire to maintain those relationships. Other times there is a fear of separation from the doctrine related to losing your soul. Actually there is nothing wrong with having a concern, a fear of losing your soul as long as the teaching to avoid that loss is true.

In The Midst Of The Forest

Below is a continuation of this idea of the need to get to 10,000 feet, that is away from the control and determine if what you believe is true. The truth has absolutely no fear of investigation but religious groups like to hook you, reel you in and eventually devour you into their beliefs. Essentially all religious groups “save one” have been more or less paranoid leading to violence and deceit. The “save one” mentioned is the truth, you know “THE TRUTH.” There is truth and of course, the truth has no fear of exposure, no paranoia and if you come to know the truth you will understand that only your free will acceptance of it and your free will continuance in truth has any meaning. If you are thoughtful you might realize that God would have it no other way! The picture below of a forest and associated landscape as seen from “supposedly 10,000 feet” represents the true picture as opposed to your confinement among the forest trees which severely limits your awareness of the surroundings. It is a mental confinement imposed by man-made religions.

View from 10,000 feet reveals religious error

Controlling You By Deceit

Now, we need some examples to point out the deceit. Because there is deceit there will also be a cover up if the group wants to continue to exist and prosper. Thus, for those who recognize there is truth, there is a battle to sort truth from error. Frequently the battle is between the deceit of one group versus the deceit of another. This of course, just brings additional confusion and it is not unusual that both groups end up being acceptable to each other. It is the ecumenical way, the way of brotherhood, the way of peace, the way those in the non-religious world like to see religious disputes resolved. If a person’s existence ended when they died this wonderful agreeing between religions would be fine since religion would be practically meaningless. The truth however is quite different and indicates there is one God, one Faith and a person’s existence does not end at their earthly demise. God’s people cannot compromise the truth and cannot accept error BUT they also cannot in any way be violent or hurtful to others. They fight a spiritual war and know the war is very individual in that it is YOU versus SIN. Throughout history the world has seen much violence between religious groups, but the world does not know that such religions are not associated with God.

We will now examine Catholicism and Protestantism in relation to their control over their respective groups. Neither of these religions represent God but are both an abomination to Him and consequently destructive to the eternal souls of their adherents. Their adherents live on the ground floor surrounded by propaganda that strengthens and maintains their support. The advice of “Heaven Coach” is to understand what you believe.

You Are A Roman Catholic

You are surrounded with others who believe similarly. Religious discussions are about things within the church and not fundamental matters of truth. When conversations in relation to doctrine occur they are guarded by many rules often found in the Catholic Catechism. The Catholic mass is the form of routine worship and well defined including the reception of God in a very personal way via the bread and wine. There is a great deal of social activity that may involve fund raising, schools, special dinners to honor any number of things and a Catholic can have a pretty full calendar. The rules and regulations may require your participation and serious sins can be assigned for those who fail in their duty.

At 10,000 feet – Catholic

You might ask was Peter the first pope or more significantly is such an office as the pope authorized by God?
Why does the Catholic church have priests?
Why is the Catholic or universal church a physical church?
Why is there no mention of venial or mortal sins in scripture.
Where does the Catholic Church get the authority to change the things delivered by God through the Holy Spirit?
There are hundreds of such questions and there are no scriptural evidences for Catholicism. In fact, at 10,000 feet the Catholic Church appears to be diametrically opposed to the scriptures. Each of these questions are examples of “death-blows” to Catholicism in their answers. However, you live at ground level and go day by day believing what you have been taught.

We could go through this same scenario for Islam, Protestantism, Mormonism and all the others. Yet, there is truth and those of the truth live at 10,000 feet because they choose a love of the truth. At 10,000 feet you are looking for truth and understanding and will not be satisfied with anything less. At 10,000 feet you see the origins, the history, the deceit, and can see if everything fits perfectly together. Essentially, you are testing whether the teaching is from man or from God.

On the ground is where you believe PEOPLE! At 10,000 feet you see for yourself. I often say Catholicism is a religion that is so easily shown to be false that it is incredible that anyone could believe the propaganda. A reasonable, indisputable discussion of Catholicism from 10,000 feet can be found here – Catholic. None the Catholic apologists can manage to defeat truth – but they will try! It is at 10,000 feet where we find the origins of religion and it is there where truth seekers need to focus. A Catholic might argue, “it is too long ago to find out what really happened back THEN.” That would be true if it were a murder case, but this is God and it is His word we use to compare all things spiritual. God allows us to handle such a matter as the validity of a religion very easily. Catholicism is filled with the ideas of men, rule-making councils, elaborate ceremonies, honor for men such as priests, bishops, cardinals and popes. These things are alien to the bible. There is One Solid Thing that divides truth from error and it is God’s word.
When a Catholic becomes aware of the true nature of Catholicism, that is, it is a total fabrication then all the rules, all the violence, all the deceit, all the honor given to their hierarchy, all the infant baptisms, all the confessions, all the masses/eucharist, all the councils, all the miracles, all the honor to Mary, all the lives dedicated to teaching Catholic doctrine and all the things taught in terms of things pertaining to the next life become meaningless and appear rather ridiculous. Many of the things just mentioned fill the daily lives of Catholics. These are ground floor things that keep Catholic’s busy. In effect, they keep Catholics from ever thinking that Catholicism may not be true. They are very effective distractions and they are typical of all man-made religions.

If Catholic’s could get out of the mire of their priests, apologists and their hierarchy they could easily see that there was no foundation for their beliefs. At 10,000 feet there is no possibility of Catholicism being anything but man-made. The book, “What Is Life All About?” spends considerable time doing a 10,000 foot study of Catholicism. Catholicism needs to be correctly understood by all religions because their basic error or problem has been repeated in various ways by many religions.

You Are A Protestant

Protestant Leaders

It is a religion born out of opposition to the Catholic church. That is, a PROTEST (Protestant) against Catholic rule. It is characterized by reliance on the scriptures ONLY. As a Protestant you believe you have a kinship with God because of your devotion to God’s word. The scriptures indeed make you wise in many ways, but Protestant’s seldom question their most fundamental beliefs, beliefs going back to Luther and Calvin, but not consistent with scripture. Unlike the early cruel and self-serving people who created Roman Catholicism, the people of the various Protestant beliefs wanted the truth and/or perhaps just wanted freedom from the tyranny of Catholicism. In any case, these early reformers were careless in handling scripture and careless in their acceptance of some Catholic belief’s and/or practices. Many of their fundamental practices look like Catholicism without the Roman hierarchy, without earthly rule. Amazingly, just a few people built the framework for Protestant beliefs and these beliefs generally stand to this day.

At 10,000 Feet – Protestant

Of course, there is considerable variation in the designation called Protestant. The essential difference is Catholics hold that their church has the right to add to and take away (often by their interpretations) what God delivered in His word. Protestant’s IN THEORY only look to the scriptures for truth. This is the correct concept, but Protestant’s falter by interpreting the scriptures incorrectly including ways that result in the loss of souls. They frequently form their own religious hierarchies, albeit much less regal and pompous than Roman Catholicism. Their most serious and universal error comes from people like Luther and Calvin.
On the ground all seems well to the many denominations and people are satisfied with their belief system. Like Catholicism, there is no real value for the soul. Truth sets people free from sin and not man-made beliefs/practices. On the ground level in the dense forest Protestant’s believe all is well with their acceptance of Jesus as God’s Son. Often, this means their singular one time acceptance of Jesus has saved their souls for eternity. Martin Luther and thousands of “Protestant preachers” after him have taught salvation by “faith only.” They teach that you cannot do anything to earn salvation. They say any action you might perform in relation to salvation is a work and works are not part of the salvation process.

Their mistake is in handling of words and concepts, which they should allow scripture to define. The words most frequently misused are “believe” and “works.” They build on this and develop many concepts that are entirely foreign to the truth – such as Calvin’s “TULIP.” Their mistakes are utterly destructive to souls. It is worthwhile to cover this very briefly HERE, but you can go to Protestant and get more details and then even more in depth information in, “What Is Life All About?.” When you live in the daily grind at ground level there is much acceptance of the belief system that surrounds you and often this has occurred generation after generation. As you begin to move up to 10,000 feet to get a better view you can find the origin of the belief and test its validity.

As good of a man as Martin Luther may have been and certainly a man of great courage as he stood up to the Roman Catholic Church, nonetheless he was a man. When you follow a doctrine such as “Sola fide” (by faith only) you are following a man. Martin Luther conceived of the idea from study of scripture and there is of course a sense where this is correct. For some reason, Luther went further and missed the true meaning God intended. Indeed, the truth is you cannot please God without faith – believing that He is and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him. The idea that you cannot DO anything to save yourself independent from God is true. There is no amount of good things you can do independent of faith in God and His Son that can merit you heaven.
Unfortunately, He missed the basic understanding, “Faith without works is dead.” He read this in James but did not understand its meaning. Luther saw the book of James as a threat to what he was teaching (Salvation by Faith only) and spoke against the book of James as scripture and wrote a negative preface to this book. However, all scripture supports James but Luther missed the obvious (he was possibly eaten up by pride over this issue) and so may be the hundreds of millions of people who follow his doctrines. Salvation requires obedience and those obedient actions must be consistent with God’s commands. Things such as believe, confess, repent and be baptized are actionable things. Faith does not end with becoming a child of God but God requires you be faithful until death. Faith is seldom, if ever separate from action.

James 2.18-20

18 But someone will say, “You have faith, and I have works.” Show me your faith without your works, and I will show you my faith by my works.
19 You believe that there is one God. You do well. Even the demons believe—and tremble!
20 But do you want to know, O foolish man, that faith without works is dead?

Paul was faithful in bringing the message to the world and indeed it was his works that testified to his faith. He would have had a dead faith if he would have only talked of going on those perilous journeys.

Protestant’s all live on the ground in the forest and fill their religious life’s with many other activities such as evangelism. Evangelism, when not based on truth is as Jesus told the Jews in Matthew 23.15:

Matthew 23:15

15 “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you travel land and sea to win one proselyte, and when he is won, you make him twice as much a son of hell as yourselves.

It is an eternally serious matter to teach error. To clarify, evangelism is the prime mission of the church, but like the Jews there is no value if the truth is not taught.
Here is the error! The works of Ephesians 2.8,9 are works of the law but apply to any work which a person might conceive could “earn” them heaven, that is, in which they could boast. You are saved by the grace of God through faith.

Ephesians 2:8,9

8 For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God,
9 not of works, lest anyone should boast.

Faith is demonstrated in your obedience, so when God commands repentance and baptism for remission of past sins – you obey to have your sins forgiven. How in the world is obeying God a work of which you can boast? The Protestants do not think that believing is a work but it is no different than repentance and baptism except it is the initial critical step and always comes before baptism.

Acts 8.36-38

36 Now as they went down the road, they came to some water. And the eunuch said, “See, here is water. What hinders me from being baptized?”
37 Then Philip said, “If you believe with all your heart, you may.”
And he answered and said, “I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.”[a]
38 So he commanded the chariot to stand still. And both Philip and the eunuch went down into the water, and he baptized him.

Cain wanted to please God but wanted to do things his own way. The offering from Cain was a substitute, something different than God would accept. There is a great lesson here for all mankind. Cain, it seems believed God would accept his offering, but God never accepts substitutes. Mankind might look at Cain and make excuses for him, but the lesson is DO AS GOD DIRECTS, exactly as He directs and that is the only way to be assured that you are pleasing God.
Like Samuel told Saul, “to obey is better than sacrifice.” In Saul’s case, as today doing it your way and not God’s way is unacceptable. Martin Luther got the message in the sense that YOUR WAY will never satisfy God. Unfortunately, Luther never differentiated that doing God’s commands was not a work to be boasted. He should have seen that Matthew 7.21 pointed to the total rejection of only mentally accepting Jesus as Lord and not doing what He commanded.

Matthew 7.21

21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven.

Hebrews indicates of Jesus:

Hebrews 5.9

9 And having been perfected, He became the author of eternal salvation to all who obey Him

The protestant would like to change this scripture from obey Him to believe in Him and also change hundreds of other scriptures that reject “faith only.”

The Protestant’s feared baptism was a work and rejected it as essential for salvation, when in fact it completes salvation in that this is where forgiveness of sins occur.

Romans 6.3-7

3 Or do you not know that as many of us as were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death?
4 Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.
5 For if we have been united together in the likeness of His death, certainly we also shall be in the likeness of His resurrection,
6 knowing this, that our old man was crucified with Him, that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves of sin.
7 For he who has died has been freed from sin.

You are buried with Christ in baptism and IF you were united in the likeness of his death you can also be in the likeness of His resurrection. “For he who has died has been freed from sin.” When do you die? You die when you go into the watery grave, that is you die to sin. It is clear that in baptism your sins are forgiven.

Galatians 3.26-29

26 For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.
27 For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ.
28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.
29 And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.

You are baptized into Christ and THEN “have put on Christ.” Before you were baptized you could not put on Christ because there was sin. In baptism your sins were forgiven.

On the very first day of the church, we have what God planned back in Genesis 3.15. Namely the reconciliation occurs for certain of those who were baptized, having believed and repented.

Acts 2.36-38

36 “Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly that God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Christ.”
37 Now when they heard this, they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Men and brethren, what shall we do?”
38 Then Peter said to them, “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.

How in the world can people so twist the scriptures and keep people imprisoned throughout their lives and then as a result to face a very bad eternity. You might be surprised at the seven things God indicates He hates in Proverbs 6.16-19, and five of those things are related to lies, false teaching, and deceit. God’s plan is completed, Jesus is the perfect sacrifice, Jesus sends to Holy Spirit to guide the apostles into all truth and then come the lies century after century. Any person can overcome the deceit and in the process learn and obey and live the truth. In doing the commands of God you cannot boast. It is just obedience and that is the thing that God loves and the thing you do in demonstrating your love for God.

The principles of God have never changed. For some strange reason, Luther tossed out doing God’s commands and doing them for the reason God indicated. It was part of Luther’s “Faith only” doctrine.” Faith has always included action, obedience.
The most fundamental message from God to Man is obedience and it will never change.
Solomon, known as the wisest of men, made this declaration towards the end of his life:

Ecclesiastes 12:13

13 Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God and keep His commandments, For this is man’s all.

Jesus told His disciples:

John 14.15

15 If you love Me, keep My commandments.

The whole of scripture strongly teaches you need to obey God.

So when God commands something for salvation, you must do ALL He says not just part of what He says. Luther choose to teach part of what God had commanded for salvation. Is “faith only” an interesting concept, a fascinating idea? Yes, it is, but is it what the scriptures teach for salvation? NO!

The process of conversion belongs to God and during the first century there were many converted beginning on the first Pentecost after the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus.
The New Testament records the details of distinct conversion events that explain the conversion process, yet even in this simplest and most critical of things to understand there is confusion. Why? Because people choose to listen to men instead of God.

Pride destroys, and in some way played a part in the creation of Catholicism as well as Martin Luther’s/John Calvin’s Protestantism. In Catholicism, in Protestantism you are on the ground undergoing a “one-sided conversation” of your belief and likely do not truly understand what you believe. Pride will also destroy you unless you have the courage to go to 10,000 feet in search of the truth. Pride, yes the pride of life that says you are right and then close your mind to all else. The stranglehold of “faith only” on Protestant groups is so strong that on this issue (the issue that really matters) they are completely closed-minded. Luther’s “faith only” doctrine has survived because certain verses and ideas have been crafted to appear reasonable. This has been going on so long that the doctrine has been “grandfathered in.” It is no longer open to questioning. We have generation after generation glued to this doctrine and it is inconceivable that family now dead were wrong. Another appeal of this doctrine and one of the fascinating parts is how easy it is to be saved. Get someone to accept Christ as their personal savior and they can claim heaven. That would be great if it were true and it would be disastrous, cruel and costly to the souls of mankind if it were false. Very few will care to study with an open mind, but YOU can decide to do the right thing or learn the right thing to do regardless of others. Throw out all the rhetoric of Luther, Calvin and the thousands of Protestant preachers. If you do that you will find no basis for “faith only.” You can do exactly as was taught in the first century under the guidance of the Holy Spirit and now your salvation is built on solid rock.

Another good reference for the subjects discussed here is “The Fall Of Catholicism and Protestantism In One Simple Lesson.”

How Could So Many Religions
Totally Miss The Mark?

It is not just religions but most of mankind have missed the mark, have missed the truth in relation to God. How could this happen? Someone might say, how did God allow this to happen? The answer is in the previous statement. God did allow this to happen although He clearly did not want the apparent outcome.

2 Peter 3:9

9 The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.

I guess you might say, God in giving man a free will placed His creation in a situation where they are making the eternal decision for themselves. This would make sense since God is sorting out those who will spend eternity with Him. There is necessarily a test and being God it is a perfect test. So many people have created religions, claiming association with God. This is not what God wanted and He certainly will not accept men’s religions. In fact, this is the test, namely follow God or follow man. God’s message is perfect, clear, historically consistent, and contains a single purpose from the beginning until the end. God’s WAY IS HIS WORD (which is able to make a person wise unto salvation) and contains the greatest wisdom that is often copied and then dissected, twisted to create man-made religions.

Men’s religions have an advantage in convincing people because most teach things people want to hear and this typically includes a comfortable path for each person to succeed. God’s path is difficult for many people and although challenging the road to heaven can be achieved by anyone. The proud, selfish, unforgiving, and greedy persons represent those who have little chance of success. People need to find the truth and obey it an live it. People with these deplorable characteristics mentioned above are unlikely to even have interest in God, truth and doing God’s will. They would like to go to heaven, but also want everything now. The correct characteristics for heaven will be quite the opposite of these. Even so, there is no guarantee of heaven, but these people are in the race and with perseverance and a love of the truth can be successful.
God placed the local church in the business of evangelism and it needs to get the message to the world. So, if you are keeping score you need a great attitude, a love of the truth and the message has to be available. The gospel has been preached since Acts 2 but few have responded (relatively speaking). People have chosen a better sounding gospel, a more comfortable gospel and the truth has been rejected. God is not to be blamed, but the blame belongs to the proud, selfish, unforgiving, greedy men and women who have perverted the truth. The truth is still there and the religious deceit is without merit for those who look, for those who have a love of the truth. You may say, I thought I was following God, I was deceived. It turns out you were following man and that route does not offer forgiveness of sins and Jesus made it clear there is just one way to the Father. It is certainly not YOUR WAY or the way of any man or woman.
The world lives IN EXCUSES and IN ENABLING, but that is not God’s way. You might say most of the world is not Christian, will God reject those who are not Christian?
Several things need to be said in the background before answering this question:
1) Entire nations have rejected Christianity and these places need the gospel or most of the people in those nations will be lost.
2) Most of those who call themselves Christian throughout the world are not Christian. You can say you are Christian, but God makes that determination based on your obedience to the gospel and then maintains you in favor as you remain faithful.
3) Babies and young children have no sin and thus will not be lost. God knows the heart perfectly and makes this determination perfectly. There is no such thing as original sin or inherited depravity. These are man-made ideas.

God indicated you need to have your sins covered and Jesus is the only means to achieve the reconciliation. Therefore, God will not accept those who are not part of the body of Christ. The scriptures are clear about this but the interesting thing is how people respond to this information. Some reject God as the God of the bible for His narrowness, while others realize they need to obey becoming a child of God and receive the benefits of the relationship. NOW, you can also help others to the truth. The one rejecting God for His narrowness just complains, eventually loses his or her soul and helps no one to the truth.
The RELIGIONS OF THE WORLD keep their adherents busy at the ground level. The DISTRACTIONS OF THE WORLD keep people intent on being successful in this life or dreaming about being successful in this life. The truth is there, but people have little time or interest in things beyond their sight. God will succeed in getting just those that love Him and not a single mistake in relation to his plan will be made. God defines those that love Him as those who keep His commandments. Men claiming to speak for God have really confused the world. The world believes most people will be saved and the logic is God would not condemn the majority because most people are “good.” “Good” however, as defined by God is one who has had his/her sins covered by His Son and continues to keep God’s commandments throughout their life. If a person looks at scripture, it is easy to see that few will achieve heaven.

Matthew 7:13,14

13 “Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it.
14 Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it.

Jesus is speaking of a narrow gate and He is the only entrance to that narrow path and obedience to Him is the only way to succeed. You can easily find “religious people, teachers” who will tell you how easy it will be to find heaven and that most “good” people will succeed. They grow their organizations and their followers like themselves are headed for a very sad ending.

John 14:6

6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.

John 8:24

24 “Therefore I said to you that you will die in your sins; for if you do not believe that I am He, you will die in your sins.”

Acts 4.10-12

10 let it be known to you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead, by Him this man stands here before you whole.
11 This is the ‘stone which was rejected by you builders, which has become the chief cornerstone.’
12 Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.”

The path is NARROW (Only Jesus and His law – The New Covenant) and DIFFICULT because there is a lot to overcome in the world. The narrow, difficult path was designed by God and it will sort good FROM evil, humility FROM pride, selflessness FROM selfishness, love of the truth FROM an uncaring/deceitful and lazy attitude, forgiving FROM unforgiving, strength to do the right thing FROM the failure to act correctly, ethical/moral behavior FROM unethical/immoral behavior, love FROM hate, and ultimately those covered by the blood of Christ FROM those who rejected God’s Son.

People definitely do not like this truth, “that only a few will achieve heaven” and reject the God of the bible for this reason. God certainly will reject them. A reasonable understanding of God (which is an important deliverable for Heaven Coach) might lead to the conclusion that God is selective. Since God cannot lie you can expect that to qualify for heaven you must do as He directs. There is nothing more certain than the need to have a relationship with Jesus. God does not respect one person more than another, but selects people who have been reconciled by the sacrifice of His Son.
God shows no partiality or we might say He is not a respecter of persons.

Acts 10:34

34 Then Peter opened his mouth and said: “In truth I perceive that God shows no partiality.

1 Peter 1:17

17 And if you call on the Father, who without partiality judges according to each one’s work, conduct yourselves throughout the time of your stay here in fear;

Romans 2.5-11

5 But in accordance with your hardness and your impenitent heart you are treasuring up for yourself wrath in the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God,
6 who “will render to each one according to his deeds”:
7 eternal life to those who by patient continuance in doing good seek for glory, honor, and immortality;
8 but to those who are self-seeking and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness—indignation and wrath,
9 tribulation and anguish, on every soul of man who does evil, of the Jew first and also of the Greek;
10 but glory, honor, and peace to everyone who works what is good, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.
11 For there is no partiality with God.

Those reconciled are added by God to the church(Acts 2.47), the body of Christ, the spiritual kingdom. It was THEIR selection of Jesus as Lord that opens the door to a wonderful eternity with God. At the end of the world Jesus delivers His Kingdom (The Church) to the Father. The scriptures put it this way:

1 Cor 15:24

24 Then comes the end, when He delivers the kingdom to God the Father, when He puts an end to all rule and all authority and power.

If you wonder why so many people miss the mark, simply look at the world. Do you find compassion, do you see a high interest in God, do you see greed, do you see wars and violence, do you see pride and selfishness, do you see vanity, jealousy, hatred, immorality and unethical behavior? There are sprinklings of compassion and interest in God but the evil seen in individuals and groups is overwhelming. The mass media is prejudiced, deceitful and disregards God and would make the old Soviet media proud of their propaganda and anti-God position. The world is filled with excuses for everything and people carry that idea into religion and pretend to be God by speaking for God. That is, they look at scripture and say THAT CANNOT BE, maybe they say it is not fair or “whatever.” It is such a significant part of God’s test to realize you are not God. So, we have a world missing the mark and religion plays a big part in the deceit. The good news is you can be successful if you have a love of the truth. Despite all that is against the truth, God wants as many souls as possible to share in unspeakable riches. Stand back, go to 10,000 feet and indeed if you seek God you shall find him if you search with all your heart and strength.

Encouragement Along The Way

In the depths of the city of tall buildings or in the deep, dense forest you are stuck with limited visibility and this is a valued place for indoctrination. When the scriptures indicate the critical nature of having a love of the truth it is exactly for this reason, namely to overcome error.

2 Thessalonians 2.9,10

9 The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders,
10 and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved.

God wants people who can overcome error and realizes all the difficulties in such a challenge. I observe many people believing success in life is a “cake walk” consisting of not being “too bad” whatever that means. God makes the rules and life is anything but easy and it seems from scripture God wants the best of mankind. This is not a comparative thing between people as to who is the best, but all can be the best. The best has nothing to do with earthly achievement, but more along the lines defined by Jesus in the sermon on the mount of Matthew 5. Matthew 5.6 applies to what (finding truth) we are discussing on this page.

Matthew 5.6

6 Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, For they shall be filled.

This gives us an idea of the effort required in the search for truth, that is, hungering and thirsting after righteousness. I see no indication that God will accept less than a perfect sacrifice on your part. That would be impossible if it were not for Christ, but he covers your past sins and then going forward you have Him as your advocate even unto the judgment. However, you must live faithful unto death. That is, keep His commands and as we know this demonstrates our love for God. So man’s idea is God will save most people. God’s message to man is He will save those who have been perfected in Christ. By the grace of God through faith you can be what God wants you to be. Present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service.

There is another page which might help some people to find the truth. It is called, “Why You Believe What You Believe.” One of the reasons we believe what we believe is simply because we were “raised up” in that belief. Now, I would suggest if that same person who is a “devout” Catholic were “raised up” as a Protestant that person would be a “devout” Protestant. The influences surrounding us make us religiously what we are and that might be negative or positive. Many raised in Catholicism with a bad experience (maybe what they saw in their parents or within the Catholic organization) will stay as far away from Catholicism as possible. We could discuss any religions in this way, BUT here is the point. You need the truth, a love of the truth and not accept a religious belief for any other reason. Of course, everyone says they have the truth – so who do you believe? You might be surprised how easy it is to sort truth from error when you love the truth and how impossible it is when you do not care or are closed minded to anything different than your currently believe.
Many people have “carefully studied” to determine the truth, they have “tested the waters” of many beliefs. Yet, they still may be wrong in their belief and a common reason is due to accepting the best they could find in the “religious marketplace.” You need to ask yourself, does everything fit perfectly together in my belief? Be honest with yourself. You are dealing with God and only with Him does everything from the beginning make sense.
Leaving the ground floor to look around can be very hard but the prize is great. You really cannot help others until you get to the truth and obey it and begin living it. This is God’s strong desire for you – it is very personal. It is personal because it is your sin before God and unless you have a personal relationship with Jesus by faith YOU will fail. It is so personal that it will be just you and God at judgment – no one else! Well, not quite correct, although there will be no other person involved in YOUR judgment, you can have and must have Jesus as your advocate if you are going to succeed.

1 John 2:1

21 My little children, these things I write to you, so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous.

The verse above is talking about a child of God sinning and then doing as the apostles instructed Simon the sorcerer in Acts 8.

Acts 8.22

22 Repent therefore of this your wickedness, and pray God if perhaps the thought of your heart may be forgiven you.

Simon the sorcerer had become a Christian as recorded in Acts 8.

Acts 8.13

13 Then Simon himself also believed; and when he was baptized he continued with Philip, and was amazed, seeing the miracles and signs which were done.

The past sins of Simon were forgiven and now per the apostles instructions he needed to repent and pray God for the sin discussed in Acts 8. Jesus is his advocate per 1 John 2.1.
God sees Jesus as your advocate. There before God are your sins, but Jesus covers them and the price paid is his blood – He has bought your freedom from condemnation.

Acts 20.28

28 Therefore take heed to yourselves and to all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood.

The encouragement is that you can make heaven your home if you want to badly enough. It is much more difficult for some than others because some have dug themselves a very deep hole. Very few escape the deep holes they dig for themselves and one reason is the addictive nature of sin, which leads to worry, depression, despair and eventually for some suicide. It turns out it is hard enough for a child of God to live acceptably. Fortunately, some few can escape the curse of serious sin and be very grateful and live a life ending in heaven. David and much later Saul of Taurus (later Paul) were two who overcame sin/opposition to God respectively and greatly pleased God with their lives. Good advice is to never admire people or think any person is of greater value than yourself in terms of their ability to please God. You have the ability to greatly please God just as much as David and Paul and all it takes is the right attitude and dedication. It is amazing what a dedication to obeying God CAN DO. Namely, it CAN DO heaven!

One Last Thought About Truth and Salvation

You are a Catholic or a Protestant and devoted to your respective belief. If you knew nothing of either of these religions and were presented with the simple truth as found in the scriptures much as discussed here in “Heaven Coach” would you reject Catholic and/or Protestant teaching? Catholicism and Protestantism are full of inventions but especially as related to salvation, that is doctrine NOT found in scripture. Babies being baptized, religious ceremonies, salvation tied to a physical church or “faith only” salvation, honoring men or women with reverence, elaborate buildings, original sin or inherited depravity, and there are hundreds of doctrines absent from scripture fundamental to Catholicism and/or Protestantism. However, you have a history in the Catholic or Protestant church and friends/family solidify your participation and perhaps you have become very defensive of your belief. This is the religion you know and having lived on the ground floor you are well indoctrinated. The suggestion is you really do not understand what you believe, but will claim you have great understanding. Is that understanding the truth or what you have been indoctrinated to believe is true? In our example here, since your youth you were only exposed to the scriptures and everything was necessarily validated by God’s word. You were always encouraged to live at “10,000 feet” so you could understand and indeed everything made perfect sense from Genesis to Revelation. There are exactly zero doctrines of men and salvation is exceedingly clear and seen in all that God was doing since Genesis 3.15. You are saved from past sins exactly as were those of the New Testament beginning in Acts 2. Now, you receive exposure to Catholicism and/or Protestantism and it is easy to see where their doctrines add to or take away from God’s word. Your confidence is in God and His word and you reject the doctrines of Catholicism/Protestantism and you know why they are being rejected. The difference between truth and error is the difference between using the word of God ONLY and using the word of God and mixing it with the doctrines of men and women.

2 Comments to “Religious Vision At Ten Thousand Feet”

  1. >>>
    God’s people cannot compromise the truth and cannot accept error BUT they also cannot in any way be violent or hurtful to others. They fight a spiritual war and know the war is very inividual in that it is YOU versus SIN. Throughout history the world has seen much violence between religious groups, but the world does not know that such religions are not associated with God.

    This is just another lie. Another deceit to control people. You claim your religion is truth, yet you do not allow for people to defend themselves. You corrupt the word of God with your lies refusing to acknowledge the verses in the Old Testament that not only provide for ones self defense using violence, but also does not hold one accountable when put in such a situation that one is forced to take the life of those lying in wait.

    That being the facts of scripture, you too like all those religions you are condemning place your pathetic understanding above what is actually written. You too have missed the mark.

    Jesus did not resist the temptations of the devil with “as it is interpreted”, He resisted those temptations with “as it is written.”

    When you start looking at what is written, and stop trying to interpret what is written, contrary to what is written, you will truly begin to understand God, and you just might learn something.

    Scott A. Tovey

    • Scott,
      You are right what is written is what is important and scripture is of no private interpretation and if one speaks it needs to be as the oracles of God – that is God breathed speech. One can do that by understanding God’s purpose, His plan and be sure that all the scripture on any subject is studied. Because it is from God, it all fits together perfectly.
      One important differentiation is that the old law is nailed to the cross and we live under the new covenant. It is not longer and eye for an eye nor is acceptable to lust after a woman which was previously committing adultery. The law was there to bring Christ – it is done. As far as defending oneself when under attack that is expected. I was talking about religions fighting against each other and neither of them being associated with God. The crusades are one example – it was not Christians versus Muslims but Catholics versus Muslims. Christians do not band together to fight against other religions. Christians are to fight a spiritual war. God’s people are not interested in controlling people but in preaching the gospel and each person will make decisions that will determine their eternity. God plan involves free choice and God’s children only speak the truth. The point of the statement regarding religions fighting against one another is in the context of the page that many people look at religion and say that cannot be God and turn away from God. They were right it was not from God and God is no way associated with their violence. They in effect are turning away from God because of what men have done. Yes, there were various OT battles sanctioned by God and there was violence and done at His direction such as with Saul and the Amelkites. These things are discussed at Heaven Coach but the bottom line is hard for some people but it is this – God gives life and takes life and always has a purpose BUT YOU ARE NOT GOD and part of the test is not to judge God. Yet the taking of life is condemned by God if you or I would do it, say out of anger. As God explains in various ways ……… His ways are higher. Two pages that discuss this are “The apparent harshness of God” and “God’s severity.” The only serious thing for you and me is that we please God and that can only be done His way – that is the test! Any time we spend with “I am right and you are wrong” may not be the best use of our short time. If there is a problem in religion is that the basics are not taught and not understood – we believe people and believe they know what they are talking about – do not believe me but understand what you believe and do so with an open mind and prayer.


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