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Heaven, Hell, Jesus, and the Bible

“Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away.”  Matthew 24:35

Today on ABC – Barbara Walters repeated an interview about Heaven and Hell with many celebrities and well known figures and some not well known figures about about Heaven and Hell.

The Bible says –

1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made. In Him was life, and the life was the light of men. And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend[a] it. (John 1:1-5)

There are so many theories and speculations about what heaven and hell     This is what is called man’s wisdom.  You cannot find out about Heaven or Hell or God by watching an interview.  Yes it may be entertaining, but in reality we are all searching for what is the Truth?

The Bible makes it clear – Jesus is the Truth, the Way, and the Life.

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[a] narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it.- Matthew 7:13-14

An explanation of Heaven as it is known in the Bible –

1) First Heaven – the sky or firmament

2) Second Heaven – what we like to call outer space

3) Third Heaven – is something we cannot see where Jesus sits at the right hand of the Father and is described in the Book of Revelation and also in the book of Ezekiel.

I cannot argue Heaven or Hell or Jesus with someone who does not take an act of faith and come to the point that all of life is meaningless without Jesus.  This takes the Holy Spirit to reveal who Jesus is.

You cannot get to Heaven by being a good person – because none of us are good.  Nobody, no one, not anyone anywhere is good, there is no one.  Whatever good you think you may have done it is nothing.  You cannot earn a place into Heaven by doing good deeds.  It takes the life changing influence of Jesus Christ as the only way to inherit eternal salvation or the right to enter into the Kingdom of Heaven because there is no one righteous not even one.  Whatever good deeds or rituals or ceremonies that we have done, nothing will enable to enter into the Kingdom of Heaven because it was only purchased through the Blood of Jesus.  He took the worlds sins, and yes everyone sins everyday.  No matter what man or angel or any other being from heaven or on earth says –  Jesus is superior to them all, and He is the only way to the Heavenly Father, who is so bright that looking at Him could kill you because His power is an uncountable more times than electricity.  In fact in the Old Testament He revealed Himself as a cloud by day and fire by night, and even if you’ve been the worst thunderstorm you cannot begin to understand the magnitude of the God of the Bible.  The only way to know this God is through Jesus Christ, and it takes a personal revelation from Him, Himself to you so you can go ahead and watch all the interviews of all the people, but in the end, you are going to have to take an act of faith and search out God for yourself.

I found Jesus through renouncing Hinduism because of heavy demonic activity.  In fact the only thing that saved me from insanity was the prayer of a friend to the Heavenly Father in the name of Jesus.  Before that God was so distant and far away.  Now He’s so close and He gives me revelation of who He is.  He is a God of love, compassion, of Holiness.  Nobody is perfect, I don’t care who you say you are – whether you’re Dalai Lama, Mahatma Gandhi, or Mother Theresa, unless you have Jesus your works don’t mean anything.  It’s only after you’ve been saved, and this is a daily practice of believing in Jesus, working out your salvation with fear and trembling or awe and reverance and then portraying the fruits of the Holy Spirit, and the Word of God, which is Jesus and also the Bible revealed through the Holy Spirit and a daily repentant heart and turning away from your sin with the Help of the the Holy Spirit.  Unless you have Jesus you always find other things, other idols, be it money, pleasures, signficant others, and something else to satisfy, but Jesus is the Bread of Life, and whoever eats of Him will not hunger or go after things that don’t really matter in life.

There are 10 commanments:

You shall not have other gods

You shall not make any graven images

You shall not take the name of the LORD in vain

You shall observe the Sabbath (Saturday)

You shall“Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long upon the land which the Lord your God is giving you.

You shall not murder.

You shall not commit adultery.

You shall not steal.

You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.

You shall not covet your neighbor’s belongings or wife or husband.

Most of those have broken those things, but lets say you haven’t.  There are 603 others, and you would not be able to fulfill them at all, that’s why Jesus had to become the curse of the Law. When you believe in Him, you are released from the Law, and the curse of the Law, but then you have to follow the Holy Spirit, who lives in your heart and gives you that tugging feeling to let you know whether you want to accept Him or not.  If you experience that tugging feeling in your heart, and you want to accept Jesus into your heart because He is the one who will comfort you when you cry, He is the one who holds your hand, He is the one that is always with you when you are down, and He forgives you because He died for you.  No other person died for you.  Yes other people died, but He is the only one that died specifically for you, and for the rest of the world just so that He would have a relationship with you and even if you were the only person on earth He would have died for you.  Not only did He die for you in a gruesome horrible death and was buried in a dark tomb,  but He actually showed up physically after He died, and ate, then went up to Heaven, the real Heaven.   This is not something that can be thought with the mind, it is something that is revealed in the heart and it takes a risk of faith to say, I choose to accept You Lord as my Savior. He and I are not going to force you to believe, we can just warn you, but the thing is that don’t be afraid that if you don’t believe you will go to Hell, but go to Him because of this awesome love and forgiveness of everything that you’ve ever done.  We all have this trash in our lives that He has to take out, and He is willing to give you a brand new start and a clean slate, and wipe it clean, and whatever chalk stains you get on the blackboard of life, He is willing to wipe them clean every day if you say,  “You know what I am wrong in this.”  He will teach you lessons and He will speak to you through His Word.  This is special.  I didn’t have this before I knew Jesus.  Before I knew Jesus and I mean really knew Jesus I was searching for things that could not satisfy.  It’s  a process of life that we have to work at, but Jesus helps us everyday and you are never alone.

You really don’t know how long you have, so be prepared.  Jesus is coming any time soon, and whoever reads this, if you feel a conviction to believe in Jesus say,

Heavenly Father,

I know that I am a sinner, and I know that I cannot live life except without your grace, and I have done many things wrong in my life, but I would like to know You and this God who can change my heart and turn me into a new creation, and work with me to wipe my slate clean everyday and walk with me through life during all the hard times, and all  the rough times, so that we may go through this journey alone and that I can learn to trust in You.  I want to experience Your Love, and Joy, and Peace, in a world that just seems to be falling apart.  You know how many times I have failed, and You have been there to pick up the pieces even though I couldn’t see it.  I want to accept You as my Savior and regardless of what happens to me, I want to serve You.  Teach me how to fall desperately in love with You and help work to refine and change me to be more and more like You everyday.

In Jesus Mighty Name I pray,

Amen.

If you want more information – go through my blog, there are a lot of articles and a lot of information, and also you can reply to this blog, but be sure to use the word Jesus.

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Once Saved Always Saved?

 

This video touches and answers all the questions in one piece about the age old “Once Saved Always Saved” question.  There’s so much that can be said, but what’s most important is to lay down and start over again each day.

 

Heavenly Father,

Forgive us today for being selfish and/or greedy with our prayers.  Forgive us for any area where we have failed You and not lived according to Your purposes.  Forgive us for being soulish, and selfish, and help us to seek more and more after You.  We don’t take You for granted.  Help strengthen the body of Christ in the last days, and let us lay aside every sin, that has become a snare for us.  Help us to forgive where we have had grudges.  Help us to lay everything down before Your feet, and let Your Holy Spirit work go before us.  Thank You for this young man, who put things into proper perspective.  We’ve seen it one too many times where people have lost their souls because they think just because they believe, but they don’t do.  If we have fallen away in this area in any way, if there are things that You have told us to do, that we have not done, forgive us for that.  Forgive us for all the things that have defiled our minds, feelings, and behaviors.  Forgive us when we have not acted out of love.  Forgive us when the fruit of the Spirit has not been cultivated within us.  Help us to be true worshippers Lord, and help us to enter in by the narrow gate.  Have mercy upon us Lord.  Let the light of Your grace, justice, and mercy be upon us Lord God.  We repent for all of our selfish prayers, but thank You for sending this young man as a prophet to speak the Word of Truth into our lives, that we need to hold on to You, and that this is a race, and that we need to keep our eyes on the prize.  Help to refine us and purge away the dross in our lives.  Help to purify us and make us like gold.   Help us when we are weak, and deliver us from temptation, and rescue us from evil.  Help us to pray like You want and not like we want.  Thank You for hearing our prayer and supplications.

In Jesus Mighty Name I pray,

 

Amen.

Fighting tools

I’ve been recently been thinking upon and chewing upon the verses and even claiming some of the verses and Scriptures that have to do with the Armor of God.  In Ephesians 6, it mentions the Armor of God,

10 Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. 11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.
14 Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; 16 above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. 17And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; 18 praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints.

This is one of the most profound passages of Scriptures found in the Bible.  While Paul was in prison, he got inspiration while looking at a Roman Soldier.  You can take some time and research some sermons about that.  But what I want to talk about actually is the connection between this passage and Psalm 91.

Safety of Abiding in the Presence of God

1 He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High
Shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.
2 I will say of the LORD, “He is my refuge and my fortress;
My God, in Him I will trust.”

3 Surely He shall deliver you from the snare of the fowler
And from the perilous pestilence.
4 He shall cover you with His feathers,
And under His wings you shall take refuge;
His truth shall be your shield and buckler.
5 You shall not be afraid of the terror by night,
Nor of the arrow that flies by day,
6 Nor of the pestilence that walks in darkness,
Nor of the destruction that lays waste at noonday.

7 A thousand may fall at your side,
  And ten thousand at your right hand;
But it shall not come near you.
8 Only with your eyes shall you look,
And see the reward of the wicked.

9 Because you have made the LORD, who is my refuge,
Even the Most High, your dwelling place,
10 No evil shall befall you,
Nor shall any plague come near your dwelling;
11 For He shall give His angels charge over you,
To keep you in all your ways.
12 In their hands they shall bear you up,
Lest you dash your foot against a stone.
13 You shall tread upon the lion and the cobra,
The young lion and the serpent you shall trample underfoot.

14 “Because he has set his love upon Me, therefore I will deliver him;
I will set him on high, because he has known My name.
15 He shall call upon Me, and I will answer him;
will be with him in trouble;
I will deliver him and honor him.
16 With long life I will satisfy him,
And show him My salvation.”

In vs. 2, the Bible talks about the refuge and fortress.  The refuge is a shelter and fortress and is a strongtower, and in God, not just God, but our own personal relationship we have with God, we are to trust. A snare can even mean a trap, and in some cases it means calamity.    In vs. 4 it talks about wings and feathers, and I’ve heard it mentioned that this refers to the Talit, or Prayer Shawl, that Jesus used when He was walking around and the woman just touched the hem of His garment.

Psalm 91 talks about those that dwell particularly in the Secret Place, under the shadow of the Almighty.  The Almighty is actually the name El Shaddai, for God.  God Almighty, means the many breasted, or One who provides nourishment to our souls.  This is the same God Almighty mentioned in Revelation 1:8-

“I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End,”says the Lord,“who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.”

Imagine a mother Eagle, who protects her children under the shadow of her wings.  This is the same way God Almighty protects us under the shadow of His wings.  Under that shadow is safety.

The shield and buckler, is composed of two things – there is a shield of faith, which is actually the size of a door and then there’s the buckler, which is a smaller shield, and is used for victory, or for decoration.  This shield helps quench the fiery darts of the wicked one, but that takes take daily preparation and the renewing of your mind with the Word of God.  You have to know what the Word of God says to be able to use it because it is a great weapon.  Sometimes if you cannot pray anything at all, I would suggest memorizing and/or reading Psalm 91.

Ephesians 6 talks about the loin belt of truth and that is the Word of God.  Jesus is the Word and Truth.  As one preacher put it, He is the Word that came down and wrapped flesh around it.  That doesn’t mean that there was a Bible in heaven.  But there was a Person, who was the Word, and He is revealed through logos and rhema. He is your loin belt, so that mean He’s holding you up so you won’t fall.  He’s got His arms around your waist and the most intimate parts, because that is where you seek intimacy through the loin belt of truth.  It’s like He’s hugging you around your waist and He’s protecting you.

You must trust God, because He is trustworthy, to the extreme exponential power, and there are times where the enemy tries to put doubts in your head, like “Can God really be for real?”  or “I don’t understand what’s going on.”  That’s the best time to put your faith and trust in God.  When you have the Holy Spirit in you, He will lead you to trust God, but that also takes time with Him.  Sometimes it is just getting to know who this Person is living inside of you when you become born again, and you must be careful not to grieve Him.  One thing I have to say, that I have learned recently, is that the Holy Spirit is not about emotion, and is not defined by emotion.  You don’t have to have a feeling to have a relationship with the Holy Spirit.  He is still inside you and unless you blaspheme Him, then He will stay with you because He promised to never leave or forsake you (Hebrews 13:5-6)

There are two ways primarily the enemy attacks us, it’s either physically, or in our thought life.  There’s financial as well, and if we sow and reap properly, and believe God for just what we need as our provider, then He is gracious enough to supply.  I can’t really comment on the financial aspect of it from my own experience, so I can’t go much into detail about that.  When it’s physically, if we have the proper thought life, through the daily renewing of the mind with the Word of God, and have the faith to believe God for healing and rejoice through the sufferings, then that fiery dart is quenched.

If that doesn’t work, then the enemy will try the mind.  He will start to put thoughts in your mind, which can be based on doubt, or fear, or unbelief, and then the enemy starts to see how you will be able to unravel, and how he can tear you to pieces.  So you have to be prepared with tools and the right armor.  I want to mention something first about praying in the Spirit.  We know that there is praying in tongues, and there is praying the Word of God.  When you want to fight effectively, it is better to use the Word of God because you know exactly what you are standing on and it builds faith, but when you want to develop intimacy, or intercede for others, then some people may prefer to pray in tongues because then you are building up what is on the inside and praying the will of the Father.   In both cases you are praying the will of the Father.   So when you are in this position and you don’t know what to do and you are struggling to find a way out of this battle, get to your secret place, and start looking through Scripture.  Psalm 91 is a good place to start, the whole Bible is full of them.

When you are under full attack, and you feel like you’re about to lose your helmet, your shoes, your belt, your shield, your loin belt, your sword, your breastplate, you can’t seem to pray, just go back to the Cross, and remember one thing about Jesus-

15 Having disarmed principalities and powers, He made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them in it.

Heavenly Father I pray,

For all the people undergoing oppression right now, that they may experience release from that oppression in their bodies and over their minds, and I call to them a peace and a steadfast faith that helps them endure during these times.  Let them live on the promises of Psalm 91 and get to know the Holy Spirit more and more and get to a deeper more intimate walk with You Lord God.  Help us to protect and guard our minds with Your Word which is sent forth like a two-edged Sword, to defeat the enemy, and we know that the battle is already won, and that the victory is just around the corner.  Help them to know that there is no where they can go or nothing that they can think that can tear them from the love of God, that His love surpassess all understanding.  Help them to know the width, the breadth, the depth and the height of love so that they can adequately be obedient to Your Word, and not sin against You Lord God. Enhance our prayer lives, and Help us to see more and more of Your Presence Lord God.  Be with us as we walk everyday.  I thank You Lord God, for blessing Your people and making Yourself known among them.

In Jesus Mighty Name I pray.

Amen.

 

 

The Choice is Yours: A message for believers and nonbelievers alike

This week I have been examining my life and my own salvation, and coming to the terms that what the Bible says is not easy sometimes, but by the grace of the Holy Spirit we are able to bear the task of obeying the commandments.  In Luke 7 Jesus gives a parable to Peter and makes a comment to the woman who poured oil on his feet:

40 And Jesus answered and said to him, “Simon, I have something to say to you.”
So he said, “Teacher, say it.”
41 “There was a certain creditor who had two debtors. One owed five hundred denarii, and the other fifty. 42 And when they had nothing with which to repay, he freely forgave them both. Tell Me, therefore, which of them will love him more?”
43 Simon answered and said, “I suppose the one whom he forgave more.”
And He said to him, “You have rightly judged.” 44 Then He turned to the woman and said to Simon, “Do you see this woman? I entered your house; you gave Me no water for My feet, but she has washed My feet with her tears and wiped them with the hair of her head. 45 You gave Me no kiss, but this woman has not ceased to kiss My feet since the time I came in. 46 You did not anoint My head with oil, but this woman has anointed My feet with fragrant oil. 47 Therefore I say to you, her sins,which are many, are forgiven, for she loved much. But to whom little is forgiven, the same loves little.”
48 Then He said to her, “Your sins are forgiven.”
49 And those who sat at the table with Him began to say to themselves, “Who is this who even forgives sins?”
50 Then He said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you. Go in peace.”

After hearing a sermon on the Parable of the Wheat and Tares, I had to seriously ask myself am I truly saved, or am I just going through the motions.  Am I like wheat or am I like a tare that is going to be burned in the fire?  I had to seriously seek God in this matter because how much I love Jesus I don’t want to be cast into the fire, and have Him tell me He never knew me.  I had questions like do I really have a relationship with Jesus or am I like a tare?  This time around reading the Gospels – I started to notice the parables even more and trying to find the hidden messages.  Sometimes I think Jesus is trying to say something and give me a rhema Word, and it turns out to be something totally different than what everyone else thinks.  Before I read the passage about the woman in Luke, I thought that if I have enough faith that I know my God and He knows me, then that should be alone well enough to justify my concerns of salvation.  I prayed to receive Rhema from the Word regarding this issue about salvation, and I came up with Luke 7:50.  So then I realized that God had answered my prayer and that He does talk to me and that I do hear His voice.

The other part of the sermon I heard it talked about if we as Christians, or believers, once being sure of our salvation do not reach out to nonbelievers, or wicked, or other sinners, then their blood will be on our hands.  I heard another preacher say this as well which lead me to this passage in Ezekiel 3:

16 Now it came to pass at the end of seven days that the word of the LORD came to me, saying, 17“Son of man, I have made you a watchman for the house of Israel; therefore hear a word from My mouth, and give them warning from Me: 18 When I say to the wicked, ‘You shall surely die,’ and you give him no warning, nor speak to warn the wicked from his wicked way, to save his life, that same wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood I will require at your hand. 19 Yet, if you warn the wicked, and he does not turn from his wickedness, nor from his wicked way, he shall die in his iniquity; but you have delivered your soul. 
20 “Again, when a righteous man turns from his righteousness and commits iniquity, and I lay a stumbling block before him, he shall die; because you did not give him warning, he shall die in his sin, and his righteousness which he has done shall not be remembered; but his blood I will require at your hand. 21 Nevertheless if you warn the righteous man that the righteous should not sin, and he does not sin, he shall surely live because he took warning; also you will have delivered your soul.

 

I want to break this apart a little bit – the first part the LORD is talking about the wicked – He has told the wicked (meaning anyone that does not believe in the LORD GOD) that when He tells them that they will die for their wickedness, and the watchman who is Ezekiel, but also represents believers in the body of Christ, to save his life, that person will die in their iniquity, but God will require their blood at our hands, and our souls will be paying the price for that, but if we do tell them and they do not turn from their wicked ways, we will not be held responsible for that.

Now here’s the part that gets me – the same goes true for a righteous man, or other Christians.  So if a righteous man is still sinning, and we don’t warn him we will be held responsible for that.  It is a very heavy call asking a righteous man not to sin especially when you look at the 613 commandments in the Law.  That seems like a burden, but the Bible says, it is not burdensome or heavy to bear, if you have the Holy Spirit in 1 John 5.  But doesn’t the New Testament say that there is no righteous not even one?  And Jesus said that if our righteousness does not exceed those of the scribes and Pharisees, we will not enter the kingdom of heaven.  And Jesus also said that He did not come for the righteous, because the sick are in need of a Physician, not those that are well.

So what are the characteristics of the kingdom of heaven?  What do we really need?  The Bible says it best: faith, hope, and love, and the greatest of these is love.  Love covers a multitude of sins.  Is this love based on emotion?  Or is it something else?

For that we need to go to 1 Corinthians 13: 4-7:

4 Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; 5does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; 6 does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; 7 bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

Amplified says:

4Love endures long and is patient and kind; love never is envious nor boils over with jealousy, is not boastful or vainglorious, does not display itself haughtily.

5It is not conceited (arrogant and inflated with pride); it is not rude (unmannerly) and does not act unbecomingly. Love (God’s love in us) does not insist on its own rights or its own way, for it is not self-seeking; it is not touchy or fretful or resentful; it takes no account of the evil done to it [it pays no attention to a suffered wrong].

6It does not rejoice at injustice and unrighteousness, but rejoices when right and truth prevail.

7Love bears up under anything and everything that comes, is ever ready to believe the best of every person, its hopes are fadeless under all circumstances, and it endures everything [without weakening].

Try to replace love with your name and does that describe you?

Questions to answer yes to:

Do you endure long with screaming kids or heavy traffic jams and are patient and kind to your kids?

Questions to answer no to:

Do you ever want that dress, those shoes, that house, that car?  Do you brag about how many weights you lifted?  Do you think you are better than everyone else?

Do you act arrogantly or rudely?  Some people think being assertive is a form of arrogance.  Do you act unbecomingly or make inappropriately making immature comments?  I guess Frank Sinatra was not right, I like it My Way, is not the way we are supposed to think.  This can even happen in church – do you not like what the Pastor is preaching, what day the church is on, the music that they play, what time of day it is?  Do you get upset over little things, or do you worry a lot or hold grudges?  Would you ever want to sue anyone – even if they totalled your car and it was their fault?

Most of us can be on the right track with this one – Do we rejoice at injustice and unrighteousness or do we rejoice when righteousness and truth prevail?

Do we bear up under anything, and I mean anything that comes?

And the hardest one for most people in Bible prophecy – Do we believe the best of every person?  Anne Frank said in her diary, that she believed that deep down inside people are basically good at heart.  Can we say that for even the terrorists?

 

Are our hopes fadeless and do we endure everything and I mean everything without weakening?

 

So when we look at love God with all our hearts, minds, souls, and strength, and love your neighbor as yourself – do we have this depth of love?  We all need the LORD’s Mercy to cover us in this area.

 

One thing I want to say about if we don’t tell the wicked “You shall surely die” – this stems from the Adam and Eve story in the Bible – In the Bible it said in Genesis that God told them that if they eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, they will surely die, and the serpent, that is Satan told Eve, surely you will not die, but you will be like God knowing good and evil.  This is the same trap we have had from the beginning of time.  People didn’t think they would die from not obeying God, but the truth is that we do die, but our death is not what we think.  Adam and Eve went from having a perfect life to seeding what are news headlines in today’s world.  Do we want to change the course of the path that we are on, whether believer or non-believer?  Do we want to be caught up in a blackhole with no return, where the pain there will be pain so immense that you can not bear it?  Or do we want to have peace of mind, security, peace, joy, knowing that when you die you can actually rest in peace.

I’ve been seeing this posting about Steve Jobs, that came as a joke, that the angels in heaven were welcoming Jobs when he came because God needed an app.   Was he really living by the fruits of the spirit, did he attain salvation?  The only fruit we know of is the Apple, and that what some say was the fruit that was not to be eaten in the Garden of Eden.   After a man knows he is going to die, you would think that he got his heart right with God.  We can judge, but only God knows.

Do you know the LORD as your personal Savior?  Have you asked Him into your heart?  Do you want to have your life turn around and be filled with love?  Time is now.  The Choice is Yours.  Vote now – Jesus or the devil?  Heaven or Hell?  Eternal Life or Eternal Death?