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By Debra Miner (2008)
At one time, a very long time ago, there was nothing. There was no shape, no life, no light, nothing. Only God. He began to create the world; earth and sea and sky, moon and stars and sun, fish and birds and animals, plants and trees and grass. He saw that everything He had made was good. It was good, yet somehow incomplete. More than just creative expression, He began a creation uniquely different than all the rest . . . a reflection of Himself. With a special plan in mind, He made humankind (male and female) What a wonderful place, a perfect creation, a perfect relationship between God and His creation! Adam and Eve enjoyed their special Garden. They talked with God and with each other. They enjoyed the animals and the fruits. It was paradise! Unseen, an intruder slipped in and climbed a tree, watching for an opportunity to ruin this perfect paradise. This serpent was so evil and so jealous. You see, he really wanted to be God. He used to be a leader of God's angels, but all the heavenly praise and glory just by-passed him. Lucifer spat as he remembered the beauty that he could never receive, the admiration that he enviously desired, and the devotion that should be his! God had seen his heart that day, and banished him. There were many others that had agreed with Lucifer, and were thrown out of heaven also. But now he had seen a chance to get revenge! If he had calculated correctly, all he had to do was whisper a few words . . . here she comes! Eve enjoyed these walks with Adam. She loved the fresh air and the peace that emanated from this place. With thanks, she remembered all the great things that God had given them. She remembered that God had told them to eat any fruit they wanted (except for the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, of course). But that was only one tree out of so many from which to choose! What a magnificent God to bless them so much! What was that? She had never heard that sound before. Where was it coming from? As she looked around, she saw a strange shape in that tree over there—the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil. She walked over to look closer. As she did, Lucifer, disguised as a serpent, tricked her into eating the fruit from the restricted tree. She hadn't died like God said, so it must be OK after all. “Here Adam take a bite, we must have misunderstood God's directions.” But with that one bite—they had disobeyed God's commands. . . Sin entered the world . . . Lucifer laughed as he watched the cataclysmic waves into the spirit world and the physical earth. He had done it! He had corrupted God's perfect creation! He watched as Adam and Eve were kicked out of the Garden, separated from God. Lucifer knew that God could not look at sin, and now they were forced to leave. He called to his demons, Disease and Death. Follow them! He called to his armies of Moral Evil--Go! He had built these enemy troops for a long, long time. Now he finally had the victory!
He called to the demons of Storms and Earthquakes--Take your place in the earth and wait! He called to the demons of Fire and Wind--Move! There were so many others ready and waiting. Lucifer called them out to stake his claim on the earth. This precious creation of God's--but now it was his! Or rather, that's what Lucifer thought . . . For at the same time that God had seen the sin, He also turned to His Son. . . and They had a plan. . . .
So Where Does Evil Come From?
The Bible teaches about evil entering the world shortly after creation through The Fall recorded in Genesis 3. Consequently, this resulting sin impacted all of humanity for the rest of time. I believe that this sin additionally impacted the physical earth, resulting in the catastrophic conditions that we see throughout the world. The Bible also tells about Lucifer in symbolic prophecies recorded in Isaiah 14:12-21, Ezekiel 28:11-19, and Revelation 12:7-12. The Bible uses many descriptive words for Lucifer: Satan, the devil, the enemy, the thief, a serpent, a dragon, etc. He was an angel in heaven who desired the glory that belonged to God alone. His sin sent him from heaven, and positioned him as an enemy of everything relative to God. Jesus warned us in John 10:10, “The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.” Likewise the New Testament encourages us in 1 Peter 5:8-9, “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world.” The Bible also teaches us that praising the Lord provides protection from this evil one, “I will call upon the LORD, who is worthy to be praised; So shall I be saved from my enemies” Psalm 18:3.
What Is God’s Plan?
At the Fall, the heart of Father God was already preparing the remedy for the problem. Biblical history is full of prophecies and symbols that point to Jesus as the Son of God being the Redeemer and Savior for a world gone bad.
In Luke 4, Jesus quotes the Old Testament prophecy of Himself, “The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon Me, Because the LORD has anointed Me To preach good tidings to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, To proclaim liberty to the captives, And the opening of the prison to those who are bound; To proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD, And the day of vengeance of our God; To comfort all who mourn, To console those who mourn in Zion, To give them beauty for ashes, The oil of joy for mourning, The garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; That they may be called trees of righteousness, The planting of the LORD, that He may be glorified.” Isaiah 61:1-3 Jesus came to restore what was lost at the beginning of time back to the intimacy that was experienced in the Garden. God loved us so much that He had a plan for one holy sacrifice to save people from eternal death and give them a full life. “How did God show His love for us? He sent His one and only Son into the world. He sent Him so we could receive life through Him. What is love? It is not that we loved God. It is that He loved us and sent His Son to give His life to pay for our sins” 1 John 4:9-10 NIrV.
How Does A Person Go To Heaven Or To Hell?
Each person has a choice in their spiritual journey. For example, when buying a plane ticket, a person chooses their destination. Once that person is on the plane, he/she can not change the journey. He/she made the choice when the ticket was purchased. In a similar way, we have a choice of which road to take in our spiritual journey. “Enter God's kingdom through the narrow gate. The gate is large and the road is wide that leads to death and hell. Many people go that way. But the gate is small and the road is narrow that lead to life. Only a few people find it.” Matthew 7:13-14 NIrV. There is one road that leads to Life, Jesus, and Eternity with God (heaven). The other road leads to death, torment, and eternal isolation (hell). “The Son of Man will send out his angels. They will weed out of his kingdom everything that causes sin. They will also get rid of all who do evil. They will throw them into the blazing furnace. There people will sob and grind their teeth.” Matthew 13:41-42 NIrV
“And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire..” Revelation 20:15 The difference between the plane and life is that a person can stop at any time and choose the road that leads to Life. You do not have to be destined for hell. God waits for you. “Tell them, 'When sinful people die, it does not give me any joy. But when they turn away from their sins and live, that makes me very happy. And that is just as sure as I am alive,' announces the Lord and King. 'So turn away from your sins! Change your evil ways! Why should you die, people of Israel?'” Ezekiel 33:11 NIrV “The Lord is not slow to keep his promise. He is not slow in the way some people understand it. He is patient with you. He doesn't want anyone to be destroyed. Instead, he wants all people to turn away from their sins.” 2 Peter 3:9 NIrV
You can follow Jesus now, just by . . .
A— B— C— Admitting that you are a sinner, that you have done wrong things. Believe that Jesus is the Son of God Who died for you and now is alive! Confess that Jesus is your Lord.
"Say with your mouth, 'Jesus is Lord.' Believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead. Then you will be saved." Romans 10:9 NIrV " And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.” John 17:3 After making this big decision, tell someone about it. Find a place where you can learn to grow in Jesus by reading the Bible, praying, and sharing your faith. Consider being baptized in water as shown in the Bible. “And now why are you waiting? Arise and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on the name of the Lord” Acts 22:16. Best of all, you can begin living a life full of joy and peace in Jesus. “I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly” John 10:10b.
Quoted from New King James Version unless otherwise noted.
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