We may think of our state as being a prisoner of war. It doesn't matter to the enemy what nice things you have or have not done. You are still a prisoner and satan's tactics keep your eyes closed to the fact. Man is separated from God due to the Fall. God made the restitution.
It is up to man - each person individually - to accept this finished work in order to be set free for all eternity.
John 3:16 - 21
16 "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.
18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God's one and only Son.
19 This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but men loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil.
20 Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that his deeds will be exposed.
21 But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what he has done has been done through God."
4 In him was life, and the life was the light of men,
5 and the light in the darkness did shine, and the darkness did not perceive it.
We need light to see. The absence of light leaves one to stumble and fall. So men do without the Light of God's word and His Son. In Darkness, we cannot perceive fixtures and the facets of the things around us.
Without God's word, and the Holy Spirit, We cannot perceive The Truth
. We have no way of knowing our fallen state as the Bible discusses. Before Christ came into the world, Moses was given laws for society to live by. Men would fail, so the law contained methods of restitution. The restitution for sin was through death of an innocent animal. The spilled blood is indicative of death and the seriousness of sin.
This procedure was to point to a man prophesied of hundred of times within the Old Testament who would cleanse the Temple and rescue man from his fallen state by His own death being the restitution. God's enduring love would commit His son to die once and for all for whomever would accept Him.
This is why Christ has come into the world so that the law can be written in our hearts. The law of love was depicted by His life on earth and His eventual rejection and torment on the Cross. His love for us could not keep Him from going to that Cross.
Now when one who is in Christ sins, all that is necessary is a confession and resolve to avoid the circumstance. We are given strength through the Comforter (Holy Spirit) of God's never ending love for us.
Once you are saved, you cannot lose your salvation. But your conversion must be one where you truly do mean what you say when you tell God you accept Christ. You cannot be perfect, but you strive in the way Christ has made for us. The indwelling of the Holy Spirit helps one find the paths of righteousness.
We have no way of knowing of our fallen state till after we come to grips with whom the God of the Bible truly is. And that is by accepting Christ and having His Holy Spirit dwell within us. That is why it is said, "we are the temple of God."
One way to look at this is to think of death as a temporary state. Heaven and Hell are both eternal. Man was changed at the fall in so that death entered into his life and the world. Christ, being the second Adam, paved a way through His life, death, and resurrection. We receive the Holy Spirit, also called the Comforter, when we accept Christ as our Lord and Saviour. One suggestion mentioned by Rabbis is that man was genetically changed at the fall.
This brings to mind an analogy that might help. Just as one species of animal cannot survive in an environment not suited for it, neither can fallen man enter into Heaven in his current state without the indwelling of the Holy Spirit and being born again.
If we do not perceive what Christ has done for us, we are in darkness. We do not comprehend how great this darkness is nor do we understand its ultimate predicament in our lives.
Darkness cannot extinguish the light, and once you have received God's gift of grace, That light will shine within you and you are in the light and are saved. But if you do not accept the Light of the world, Jesus Christ
, you remain in the darkness of the fall and cannot perceive the truth of God's word. The Bible speaks of man's eyes being blind to God's truth due to satan. Naturally, our own flesh keeps us from wanting to receive the gift Christ has given all humanity.
1 John 1:5-10
5 This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all.
6 If we claim to have fellowship with him yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live by the truth.
7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin.
8 If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us.
9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.
10 If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word has no place in our lives.
Man's condition is fallen according to Genesis. The Bible tells us that God would correct the
situation by "her seed." This is referring to a man being "born of a women." This man (The Messiah - Christ in Greek) is to strike the head of the serpent (satan's seat of power and dominion), which represents a death blow, while the serpent is to strike at the heel of this individual (Jesus' death at the crucifixion was temporary) -- a non fatal blow. Although mankind has fallen and is condemned, he has the ability to enter into God's kingdom through Jesus Christ' work on the cross by accepting Christ Himself.
15 From now on you and the woman will be enemies ,as will your offspring and hers. You will strike his heel, but he will crush your head."
Jesus referred to himself as the Way, the Truth, and the Life. This is referring to the Old Testament temple entrances. The first, second, and third entrances that eventually led one into the Holy of Holy - were named in this order. Jesus is saying He is the way to life. The way back to paradise ... the Garden of Eden.
Jesus said no one comes to the Father but by me. In other words, going to Heaven as oppose to eternal damnation (each person has only two choices) is by allowing Jesus to be your personal sacrifice for the sins of your life past, present, and future. As He cried from the cross just before His death, "It is finished!" So the sins of your life will be forgiven if you have truly accepted Christ as your Saviour.
Please watch the video drama at the bottom of this page dramatizing how the world and satan attempts to confuse a young women while God works to keep her from harm. Statistics for the USA state that 1 suicide takes place every 17 minutes.
(The American Association of Suicidology.)
39 Then one of the criminals who were hanged blasphemed Him, saying, "If You are the Christ, save Yourself and us."
But the other, answering, rebuked him, saying, "Do you not even fear God, seeing you are under the same condemnation?
41 And we indeed justly, for we receive the due reward of our deeds; but this Man has done nothing wrong."
42 Then he said to Jesus, "Lord, remember me when You come into Your kingdom."
43 And Jesus said to him, "Assuredly, I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise."
These are the two criminals who died along with Jesus on their own crucifixes as it was prophesied by Isaiah (Isa 53:9) approximately 750 years before the Lord' birth. We all share something in common here with these criminals. One had accepted Jesus Christ. One had not. Both were under a condition known as the "fall." One acknowledged he needed God. The other did not. One enters Heaven and the other the place of torment.
Here is a picture of God and man which God painted Himself. One cannot readily move when nailed to a cross and this is man's predicament (man is bound and helpless) in his current condition and what God has done to resolve the situation - place Himself in man's place so those who accept God can be accepted as well.
We are bound by the Fall and God has placed Himself in man's place for all to see His work and love for us and to keep man from this fate. God created man to have fellowship with Him. To be His friend. Here affixed to three crosses is man condemned, man saved, and the Lord providing the solution.
Satan's desire is for man to be in this bound state for all eternity. Jesus came to set the captives free.
13 No one has ascended to heaven but He who came down from heaven
, that is
, the Son of Man who is in heaven
14 And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness
, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up
15 that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life
God placed His Son on the Cross. One man under condemnation accepts the solution. One rejects it.
Here on this hill where Abraham brought his own son as a sacrifice, and where he told his unknowing son when he asked, "Look, the fire and the wood, but where is the lamb for a burnt offering?" "My son, God will provide for Himself the lamb for a burnt offering." The Lord provided His own son instead of Isaac, who would be the father of the nation Israel, as an angel had stopped Abraham just at the last moment from sacrificing his son.
Thousands of years later -- just as Abraham placed the wood on Issac's back for an offering to be carried up the hill, On this very same hill the Father places the Cross on the Jesus' back to be carried for the sacrifice that would save all who would receive it.
This is man's only hope. God had to rescue man. Man cannot rescue himself nor save himself by some sort of religious activity. It is a gift from God to be accepted by men and not earned through proper behavior or any other feat.
Just as one of the men on the cross realized he deserved condemnation and comes to grips with the facts, we must realize that God is good. He did not bound men but satan did. He came not to condemn the world but to save what was (already) lost. In other words, The world and mankind is under satan's control, destructive evil, and will. God holds back the "lawless one" and allows what we call Common Grace to exist.
God keeps us alive by allowing conditions that do so to exist. Just as He held back the waters of the Red Sea while Abraham's seed escaped to safety, God holds back evil from completely rendering the worst possible conditions to exist for the human race. Just as the four (fallen) angels in the river Euphrates are held back till a certain time, the Lord keeps us under His care. We departed and the Lord went to the Cross to redeem us back from this condition.
Regardless of how we have suffered, or caused others to suffer, we can lay it all down at the foot of the cross as it was laid on His back for Him to carry. Then we can enter into paradise as we truly know He has done this for us in our acknowledgement of Him as our Savior. Once we lay down our sin and our pain, we should not go back to carry them again.
We need to go back to this Cross and say "Lord have mercy upon me ... a sinner" as the tax collector did in the Gospels while the self-righteous religious leader condemned him and by doing so left un-forgiven himself.
Just as the criminal who rejected Christ and mocked Him, there are those who do so today. They cannot enter paradise, (unless they repent and accept His sacrifice as the other criminal had done so) but instead, go to a place of torment.
The waters of the Red Sea crashed upon Pharaoh's chariots, The demonic angels in the river Euphrates will be set loose to cause their destruction upon the earth. God does punish the unrepented heart. God is just and must punish sin and unjustice. We cannot understand this completely but we must realize what Christ had put Himself through to save mankind and the earth. We must come to the conclusion that He is Just.
This is why we proclaim that man can be saved through Christ Jesus.
Today, people are so far removed from the idea of any morality, they cannot fathom the idea that people are fallen and need help. They are taught that evil is good and good is evil. They are mislead by our modern culture that there is no evil. This is due to men wanting to live for what they perceive to be pleasurable in their current fallen state.
When we look at all the evidences from the sciences that have tested the Bible's text and conclude that the Bible is the most accurate writing from antiquity, when we see what the prophecies depict and what Christ has done for us in fulfilling them, our hearts may still not accept or comprehend His love. This is due to the nature of man's heart. It should be a testament to yourself if you have not been moved at all by the words of the Gospels. If you have, you can accept Christ
; by clicking on the link here or on the link titled "Heaven" on the floating menu. Salvation is not dependant on feelings or emotions but on the work of Christ on the Cross.
We can believe what is taught in school based on past experiences and facts (or miss-leading statements), but when it comes to moral truths, we accept only what is comfortable or acceptable by our own standards with complete disregard for the ultimate truth and the most important piece of literate in human history; the Bible.
Dying with two criminals was a terribly shameful situation in the culture of Christ' time. Though, one could hardly think of any shame in respect to the torture of Christ' scourging by the Roman soldiers and the Cross itself in our modern culture's perspective. In the ancient culture, it was great psychological torment upon the indescribable physical torment of the Cross.
This is a sign to us that we ought not think it shameful to come to bare with the truth of God's word and accepting Christ' sacrificial offering. Whatever shame you may have experienced in your life, whether it is due to your own actions or someone else's, Christ has taken it upon Himself for you.
6 So Abraham took the wood of the burnt offering and laid it on Isaac his son; and he took the fire in his hand, and a knife, and the two of them went together.
7 But Isaac spoke to Abraham his father and said, "My father!" And he said, "Here I am, my son." Then he said, "Look, the fire and the wood, but where is the lamb for a burnt offering?"
And Abraham said, "My son, God will provide for Himself the lamb for a burnt offering." So the two of them went together.
Then they came to the place of which God had told him." And Abraham built an altar there and placed the wood in order; and he bound Isaac his son and laid him on the altar, upon the wood.
10 And Abraham stretched out his hand and took the knife to slay his son.
11 But the Angel of the LORD called to him from heaven and said, "Abraham , Abraham !" So he said, "Here I am."
12 And He said,"Do not lay your hand on the lad, or do anything to him; for now I know that you fear God, since you have not withheld your son, your only son, from Me."
In Jesus' own words ...
1 "Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me.
2 In my Father's house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you.
3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.
4 You know the way to the place where I am going."
5 Thomas said to him, "Lord, we don't know where you are going, so how can we know the way?"
6 Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.
7 If you really knew me, you would know my Father as well. From now on, you do know him and have seen him."
Jesus was ultimately going to Heaven but first He needed to lay down His life as the sacrificial Lamb of God. He was to prepare a place for us. This was His work on the Cross. His sacrifice prepared a place for all who would accept Him.
He also states He will come back. This is still to take place. He didn't mean this in a metaphysical - spiritual sense. He will actually come back to the earth. But not in a manner we might expect Him to. He will come with great power to stop satan's forces and mankind from totally destroying himself and the earth. We need to believe this is true. Just as we can be assured from history and the foretelling of the prophecies of the Bible that Jesus was here on earth, we can count on His word that He will be back again.
The antichrist will come as a man of peace and sign a peace treaty for 7 years that he will break himself and start the Great tribulation period (The last three and one-half years of the 7 year period.).
For thousands of years the children of Abraham preformed sacrifices using unblemished lambs. The sacrifice had to be performed in a certain fashion and were to be atonement for sin. Atonement is a covering up of the situation but not a remedy.
Christ was crucified during the Passover when everyone was to present an unblemished lamb, which happened to be on the Sabbath -- superlative. Not a bone in His body was broken, though the soldiers were ordered to break the legs of the crucified men just before sundown on the Sabbath so they would die quickly and could be taken down before the holiday. Jesus had died before the soldier had a chance quicken His death. In doing so, He fulfilled the Old Testament 'type' of the unblemished lamb -- one with no broken bones as specifically stated in the Testament in the preparation of the sacrifice as well as the Prophecy which states, "Not a bone in His body would be broken" in its reference to the Messiah. Since He was born of a virgin, fulfilling yet another Prophecy, He had no sin -- no condition every human being is under since the fall and is born with -- no blemish.
As Chuck Missler States in his book "Cosmic Codes,"1
1This link should open in a new window leaving www.Jesus-abc.com open in the original window. if not, use your browser's back button to access the site again.
"This "passing over" was reckoned "between the evenings" of the 14th of Nissan on the Jewish calendar in which each new day begins at sundown...
The lambs to be sacrificed were presented for inspection on the 10th of Nissan and were to be slain "between the evenings" of the 14th. Nothing was left till the next day. And, interestingly, "not a bone was to be broken."
Missler, Chuck: "Cosmic Codes" pg 247 Konia house, 1999
The sacrificial lamb was to be inspected for blemishes to see if it would be acceptable for the sacrifice. Jesus was found without fault by Pilate.
As we can see from the text below, man's heart is calloused and cold. We all can become victims of our own fallen nature. We actually are at all times though this is not perceptible to us under our current state.
13 Pilate called together the chief priests, the rulers and the people,
14 and said to them, "You brought me this man as one who was inciting the people to rebellion. I have examined him in your presence and have found no basis for your charges against him.
15 Neither has Herod, for he sent him back to us; as you can see, he has done nothing to deserve death.
16 Therefore, I will punish him and then release him."
18 With one voice they cried out, "Away with this man! Release Barabbas to us!"
19(Barabbas had been thrown into prison for an insurrection in the city, and for murder.)
20 Wanting to release Jesus, Pilate appealed to them again.
21 But they kept shouting, "Crucify him! Crucify him!"
22 For the third time he spoke to them: "Why? What crime has this man committed? I have found in him no grounds for the death penalty. Therefore I will have him punished and then release him."
Here, man accepts a murderer instead of the Savior simply because they are moved with their emotions and jealousy. They want to see Jesus crucified while accepting a murderer. Jesus was accused of being a rabble rouser. The people wanting Jesus' death were causing all the uprising while Jesus was healing the sick and restoring justice to a corrupted religious system run by corrupt individuals. Barabbas, the murderer, was causing Rome to persecute the people of this society as he was an insurrectionist. How great is the hypocrisy of man's heart? Let us not deem ourselves to far above these individuals for we are all bound by the fall -- the sin that separates us from God. We do not understand what level of hypocrisy there is in our own hearts. We are blinded and bound by the fall.
The Results of Sin
29 "For you closed your eyes to the facts and did not choose to reverence and trust the Lord,
30 and you turned your back on me, spurning my advice.
31 That is why you must eat the bitter fruit of having your own way and experience the full terrors of the pathway you have chosen.
32 For you turned away from me-to death; your own complacency will kill you. Fools!
33 But all who listen to me shall live in peace and safety, unafraid."
5 The earth is also polluted by its inhabitants, for they transgressed laws, violated statutes, broke the everlasting covenant.
6 Therefore, a curse devours the earth, and those who live in it are held guilty. Therefore, the inhabitants of the earth are burned, and few men are left.
7 The new wine mourns, The vine decays, All the merry-hearted sigh.
8 The gaiety of tambourines ceases, The noise of revelers stops, The gaiety of the harp ceases.
9 They do not drink wine with song; Strong drink is bitter to those who drink it.
10 The city of chaos is broken down; Every house is shut up so that none may enter.
11 There is an outcry in the streets concerning the wine; All joy turns to gloom. The gaiety of the earth is banished.
12 Desolation is left in the city, And the gate is battered to ruins.
13 For thus it will be in the midst of the earth among the peoples, As the shaking of an olive tree, As the gleanings when the grape harvest is over.
1 My son, give attention to my wisdom, Incline your ear to my understanding;
2 That you may observe discretion, And your lips may reserve knowledge.
3 For the lips of an adulteress drip honey, And smoother than oil is her speech;
4 But in the end she is bitter as wormwood, Sharp as a two-edged sword.
5 Her feet go down to death, Her steps lay hold of Sheol.
6 She does not ponder the path of life; Her ways are unstable, she does not know it.
7 Now then, my sons, listen to me, And do not depart from the words of my mouth.
27 For, behold, those who are far from Thee will perish; Thou hast destroyed all those who are unfaithful to Thee.
28 But as for me, the nearness of God is my good; I have made the Lord GOD my refuge, That I may tell of all Thy works.
Men had rejected Christ at His first coming; they will accept the antichrist, "a murderer from the beginning," in Jesus place!
Just as those who wanted a murderer to be set free, Barabbas, while the King of Righteousness, Christ, sentence to death, People will
see the antichrist as a wondrous person to be esteemed and follow. He will kill his followers while disdaining them.
44 You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father's desire. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies.
The Holy of Holy was to be entered only once a year and then by a high priest after certain conditional requirements were met. He was to atone for the sins of the community and hear a word from God to bring back to the people. The Holy of Holy contained the presence of God at certain times and no man can enter and live in the presence of God unless certain conditions were met. This was due to mans actions which caused his fall.
When Jesus died, a great earthquake took place, which tore the curtain blocking the entrance to the Holy of Holy from top to bottom, as recorded by Jewish, Christian, and non-religious authors. This signified that the separation between man and God as being eliminated. Now man can come before God. Not just as a High Priest once a year under certain conditions but the most atrocious of men who seek His forgiveness.
Through Christ, one has entrance into the Holy of Holy... to have access the presence of God. Man can come before God with all his sins and wickedness and ask for forgiveness. This is what Christ accomplished on the cross. He opened the way for man to enter into Heaven.
Written by the Apostle Paul - quoting the Old Testament....
Rom 3:10 - 26
10 "There is none righteous, no, not one;
11 There is none who understands; There is none who seeks after God.
12 They have all turned aside;
They have together become unprofitable;
There is none who does good, no, not one."
13 "Their throat is an open tomb;
With their tongues they have practiced deceit";
"The poison of asps is under their lips";
14 "Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness."
15 "Their feet are swift to shed blood;
16 Destruction and misery are in their ways;
17 And the way of peace they have not known."
18 "There is no fear of God before their eyes."
19 Now we know that whatever the law says, it says to those who are under the law, that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God.
The law was given to Moses on Mt. Sinai.
It convicts mankind before God. It was, for all practical purposes, impossible to keep the law. The law was designed to point man to God's mercy and grace -- Jesus Christ.
20 Therefore by the deeds of the law no flesh will be justified in His sight, for by the law is the knowledge of sin.
21 But now the righteousness of God apart from the law is revealed, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets,
22 even the righteousness of God, through faith in Jesus Christ, to all and on all who believe. For there is no difference;
23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,
24 being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus,
25 whom God set forth as a propitiation by His blood, through faith, to demonstrate His righteousness, because in His forbearance God had passed over the sins that were previously committed,
26 to demonstrate at the present time His righteousness, that He might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.
53 Jesus said to them, "I tell you the truth, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, YOU HAVE NO LIFE IN YOU.
54 Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day.
55 For my flesh is real food and my blood is real drink.
56 Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in him.
Here is a reference to the sacrificial lamb that was to be eaten on Passover with family members.
Ex 12:21 - 23
21 Then Moses summoned all the elders of Israel and said to them, "Go at once and select the animals for your families and slaughter the Passover lamb.
22 Take a bunch of hyssop, dip it into the blood in the basin and put some of the blood on the top and on both sides of the doorframe. Not one of you shall go out the door of his house until morning.
23 When the LORD goes through the land to strike down the Egyptians, he will see the blood on the top and sides of the doorframe and will pass over that doorway, and he will not permit the destroyer to enter your houses and strike you down.
This is a "type" in the Bible where the blood is needed for atonement of sin. It speaks of Jesus dying on the Cross.
One may contemplate why Jesus speaks to these people in these terms that they would find unperceivable. But as we know from the scriptures, Jesus was showing he was going to face death for the sins of the people in one of the most torturous methods ever devised - the Roman cross. He was going to be their Passover Lamb. The procedure describe in detail by God to Moses would point to what Jesus was to accomplish on the cross. The educated Scribes and Pharisees knew Jesus was instituting a New Covenant. Let us look at the proceeding verses.
57 Just as the living Father sent me and I live because of the Father, so the one who feeds on me will live because of me.
58 This is the bread that came down from heaven. Your forefathers ate manna and died, but he who feeds on this bread will live forever."
59 He said this while teaching in the synagogue in Capernaum.
Jesus was speaking of Himself as living due to God's power and will. If we partake of Him (His words, life, and eventual sacrifice for us), we will have eternal life. He was not speaking of actually eating His flesh and drinking His blood! The Laws of Moses stated specifically what was to be eaten and what was not. It is amazing for the teachers of these people to conceive that He meant His flesh. The Pharisees should have known better as to what he was saying, and they should have been explaining to the common people what Jesus was illustrating.
The Passover started back when the Hebrews were in Egypt and were under the tyranny of the Pharaohs whip. Pharaoh had given an order to kill the first born males of the Hebrew slaves. In doing so God had sent an angel of death to take the first born of the Egyptians. Pharaoh's order turned into a curse upon his on household.
God was using Moses to have the slaves set free. Pharaoh was making life harder for the slaves and had started to kill their children outright.
This is a predecessor for what God would do for the whole human race through Christ's work on the cross, which brings us out of bondage of death and damnation.
The home page of this site has a scripture mentioning some of the things the Messiah would accomplish. You will find many prophesies on this site.
The Hebrews would have to go through a desert a barren place to the Promised Land.
This is the plight of those who have accepted Christ as their Savior. He is taking us out of the barren condition that we are in, due to the 'fall,' and into the kingdom of God.
5 The animals you choose must be year-old males without defect, and you may take them from the sheep or the goats.
6 Take care of them until the fourteenth day of the month, when all the people of the community of Israel must slaughter them at twilight.
7 Then they are to take some of the blood and put it on the sides and tops of the doorframes of the houses where they eat the lambs.
1 Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ,
2 through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God.
16 So I say, live by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature.
17 For the sinful nature desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the sinful nature. They are in conflict with each other, so that you do not do what you want.
18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under law.
19 The acts of the sinful nature are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery;
20 idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions
21 and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,
23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.
24 Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires.
25 Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit.
26 Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other.
1 Brothers, if someone is caught in a sin, you who are spiritual should restore him gently. But watch yourself, or you also may be tempted.
2 Carry each other's burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.
3 If anyone thinks he is something when he is nothing, he deceives himself.
4 Each one should test his own actions. Then he can take pride in himself, without comparing himself to somebody else,
5 for each one should carry his own load.
Romans 1:16 - 2:11
16 For I am not ashamed of this Good News about Christ. It is the power of God at work, saving everyone who believes Jews first and also Gentiles.
17 This Good News tells us how God makes us right in his sight. This is accomplished from start to finish by faith. As the Scriptures say, "It is through faith that a righteous person has life."
18 But God shows his anger from heaven against all sinful, wicked people who push the truth away from themselves.
19 For the truth about God is known to them instinctively. God has put this knowledge in their hearts.
20 From the time the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky and all that God made. They can clearly see his invisible qualities his eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse whatsoever for not knowing God.
21 Yes, they knew God, but they wouldn't worship him as God or even give him thanks. And they began to think up foolish ideas of what God was like. The result was that their minds became dark and confused.
22 Claiming to be wise, they became utter fools instead.
23 And instead of worshiping the glorious, ever-living God, they worshiped idols made to look like mere people, or birds and animals and snakes.
24 So God let them go ahead and do whatever shameful things their hearts desired. As a result, they did vile and degrading things with each other's bodies.
25 Instead of believing what they knew was the truth about God, they deliberately chose to believe lies. So they worshiped the things God made but not the Creator himself, who is to be praised forever. Amen.
26 That is why God abandoned them to their shameful desires. Even the women turned against the natural way to have sex and instead indulged in sex with each other.
27 And the men, instead of having normal sexual relationships with women, burned with lust for each other. Men did shameful things with other men and, as a result, suffered within themselves the penalty they so richly deserved.
28 When they refused to acknowledge God, he abandoned them to their evil minds and let them do things that should never be done.
29 Their lives became full of every kind of wickedness, sin, greed, hate, envy, murder, fighting, deception, malicious behavior, and gossip.
30 They are backstabbers, haters of God, insolent, proud, and boastful. They are forever inventing new ways of sinning and are disobedient to their parents.
31 They refuse to understand, break their promises, and are heartless and unforgiving.
32 They are fully aware of God's death penalty for those who do these things, yet they go right ahead and do them anyway. And, worse yet, they encourage others to do them, too.
God's Judgment of Sin
1 You may be saying, "What terrible people you have been talking about!" But you are just as bad, and you have no excuse! When you say they are wicked and should be punished, you are condemning yourself, for you do these very same things.
2 And we know that God, in his justice, will punish anyone who does such things.
3 Do you think that God will judge and condemn others for doing them and not judge you when you do them, too?
4 Don't you realize how kind, tolerant, and patient God is with you? Or don't you care? Can't you see how kind he has been in giving you time to turn from your sin?
5 But no, you won't listen. So you are storing up terrible punishment for yourself because of your stubbornness in refusing to turn from your sin. For there is going to come a day of judgment when God, the just judge of all the world,
6 will judge all people according to what they have done.
7 He will give eternal life to those who persist in doing what is good, seeking after the glory and honor and immortality that God offers.
8 But he will pour out his anger and wrath on those who live for themselves, who refuse to obey the truth and practice evil deeds.
9 There will be trouble and calamity for everyone who keeps on sinning – for the Jew first and also for the Gentile.
10 But there will be glory and honor and peace from God for all who do good – for the Jew first and also for the Gentile.
11 For God does not show favoritism.