Can Truth Set You Free?

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Ephesians 1:1 HCSB Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by God's will: To the faithful saints in Christ Jesus at Ephesus. 2 Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

In this verse we immediately have presented to us that Paul's apostolic calling was "by the will of God."

How did his apostolic calling come

Ephesians 1:4 HCSB For He chose us in Him, before the foundation of the world, to be holy and blameless in His sight. 5 In love He predestined us to be adopted through Jesus Christ for Himself, according to His favor and will, 6 to the praise of His glorious grace that He favored us with in the Beloved.

Who are the us? The believers
When are believers chosen? Before the foundation of the world.

Paul's apostolic calling came through his salvation which was determined before the "foundation of the world."

What does the word Chose mean?

Chose -1586 - eklegomai - (from 1537/ek, " out of " and 3004/lego, "speaking to a conclusion")-properly, to select (choose) out of, by a highly deliberate choice (i.e. real heart-preference) with a definite out come (as with the destination of divine selection of salvation). (HELPS Word-studies)
(Strong's Concordance) - I pick out for myself

It means every one who comes to saving faith in Jesus Christ was chosen by God before anything or anyone existed.

I as a believer did not make a "decision for Christ." I did not come to Christ. I had nothing to do with my salvation. Salvation is a supernatural miracle of God's grace.

Life before salvation

Psalm 14:1 NASB The fool says in his heart, "God does not exist." They are corrupt; they do vile deeds. There is no one who does good. 2 The Lord looks down from heaven on the human race to see if there is one who is wise, one who seeks God. 3 All have turned away; all alike have become corrupt. There is no one who does good, not even one.

Romans 3:9 NASB What then? Are we any better? Not at all! For we have previously charged that both Jews and Gentiles are all under sin, 10 as it is written: There is no one righteous, not even one. 11 There is no one who understands; there is no one who seeks God. 12 All have turned away; all alike have become useless.

There is no one who does what is good, not even one. No one seeks God on their own. No one decides that having faith in Jesus as Lord and Christ of their life is an awesome step to take.

There are many verses in the bible that state God has chosen who will belong to Him. So,..

How does one come to God

John 6:44 NASB No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him, and I will raise him up on the last day.

John 14:6 NASB Jesus told him, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.

No one, means no one, has the ability or power to come to Christ under their own thinking, reasoning, or abilities. It is God-the Father who pulls a person to Jesus and Jesus-His Son who leads the way to the Father. It is the Holy Spirit Who is;

John 16:8 NKJV And when He has come, He will convict the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: 9 of sin, because they do not believe in Me; 10 of righteousness, because I go to My Father and you see Me no more; 11 of judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged.

The Holy Spirit stirs the heart to its wickedness and convicts a person of their sin of unbelief.

There is so much false and unsound doctrine on this. We are now a society of I'm a good person and I'm okay so I deserve for God to save me. That is not true in the eyes of God. No one except God is good therefore your righteousness is in Jesus Christ.

Without Christ Jesus

Ephesians 2:2 NASB And you were dead in your trespasses and sins 2 in which you previously walked according to the ways of this world, according to the ruler who exercises authority over the lower heavens,the spirit now working in the disobedient.3 We too all previously lived among them in our fleshly desires, carrying out the inclinations of our flesh and thoughts, and we were by nature children under wrath as the others were also.

Everyone is born:

1. Spiritually dead
2. Separated from God because -
a. transgressions- deviation from truth and uprightness
b. sin- self-originated (self-empowered) nature -i.e. is not originated or empowered by God (i.e. not of faith,...) (both HELPS Word-studies)
3. We walk in agreeance with the culture and worldly ways
4. We walk in agreeance with Satan
5. We are people of disobedience to God because we are under the dominance of Satan
6. We live in agreeance to our flesh by acting upon and carrying out its lustful desires
7. We are,from birth, children of God's wrath because of our inner nature

This is the who, not what, of every person born. Our inner nature is evil, debased, and hostile toward God. There is nothing in our nature that will, can, or wants to seek God. God says, He has chosen His own before anything existed. This is the doctrine of election.

My Testimony

I was saved, sealed, and filled with the Holy Spirit late in life and I can tell you I knew nothing about any doctrine. What I did know, to believe you're the one who chooses the only living God of the bible is a lie. When God called me to His Son and the Son began to say to me, come, all I had was a drive in my heart to search for "the truth" and it just wouldn't stop. I didn't know what real truth was or where to find it ( I was raised in church until 17).

I was like Pontius Pilate, " What is truth?" I ask people I knew, strangers who started talking to me, unbelievers, and professing Christians.

I told them "I am looking for the truth, the one that never changes or moves but always stays the same." I could no longer live in such inner instability and confusion and yet all that was happening intensified the confusion. I would ask them, Do you know? I was given lots of philosophical, physiological, man wisdom, etc. but I knew all of that was useless. I mean after almost fifty years of thinking that would change things, I had no doubt that was nonsense. However of all I ask, NO ONE said, Jesus is the Truth. He is the same, "yesterday, today, and forever more. God never changes.

I searched until I was left empty with no where to go. I was lost in darkness then Jesus came. That day on my couch I knew inside, but with no understanding, that if I didn't find what my heart desperately desired, I would somehow die. I knew it was not about physical death but I had no idea what was happening or what my thought meant. Now I know the words, BUT GOD, and they are precious words to me.

Ephesians 2:4 NASB But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love that He had for us,...

What I Learned

Love came to me. God's gift of grace, mercy, and faith filled and satisfied the deepest longing of my heart. I was called by name and told I was loved, not like mankind's love, but a perfect and holy love that makes my heart burst with joy.

I was not looking for God, just truth. Isn't that ironic. As I write this my heart sings with all I have been given through grace.

God-the Father, God-the Son, and God-the Holy Spirit chose me before the universe was created, before I was born. This means I had no input into my salvation. It was decided for me. This has been one of the most freeing doctrines I have been given because salvation belongs to God. My old dead nature messes with me every chance it gets and sin is the result.

Romans 7:21 NKJV I find then a law, that evil is present with me, the one who wills to do good. 22 For I delight in the law of God according to the inward man. 23 But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members. 24 O wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? 25 I thank God—through Jesus Christ our Lord!

So then, with the mind I myself serve the law of God, but with the flesh the law of sin.

But, it is Jesus who keeps me until the last day. With saving faith came the gift of a new heart that beats to show God my love and gratitude which is shown through obedience. Who knew obedience could be about love.

There are many verses where God declares He chooses. I do not have full understanding but after almost fifty years with no hope and no God I am well acquainted with evil and lies.

Do not believe the cultures lie you are a good person and you are okay, because until you receive faith, by grace, you are not able to meet God's requirement of good.

This I know without doubt;

Psalm 14:3 NASB All have turned away; all alike have become corrupt. There is no one who does good, not even one.

Psalm 53:3 NASB All have turned away; all alike have become corrupt. There is no one who does good, not even one.

Abram was called out of a society that worshiped idols and many gods. Abram was not a Jew. He was a Gentile and God called him out to be the father of many nations.

Hebrews 11:8 By faith Abraham, when he was called, obeyed and went out to a place he was going to receive as an inheritance. He went out, not knowing where he was going.

Believers are called out of their heathen lifestyle and the worship of their own gods. In the beginning we have no idea where God will lead our life we only know what our inheritance is, eternal life in His presence.


Cited:

Biblegateway.com (we use Bible verses from this site)

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April 05, 2018 - LHWM
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Ezekiel 33:6 "But if the watchman sees the sword coming and does not blow the trumpet, so that the people are not warned, and the sword comes and takes any one of them, that person is taken away in his iniquity, but his blood I will require at the watchman's hand." (Amplified Bible)


Sherri Bledsoe

Sherri Bledsoe is an Ordain Minister who has been studying God's Word since 2003. She has spoken at churches, nursing homes and has taught bible classes for many years. Living His Word Ministries was established in June 2008 and went live on the internet in 2013. Our Ministry is to serve our Lord Jesus Christ by speaking scripture only. This ministry is a 501c3 and helps those in need per scripture. We do take donations or offerings.


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