Spiritual Life Insurance
[This page is designed to encourage you to personal faith in Jesus Christ, and not intended to offend anyone of a different faith. In my business I am happy to serve folks of all faiths, creeds, and lifestyles.]
This page is not short because the topic is so consequential.
I know, how ridiculous! I mean, who can insure the soul? When we step back to consider what insurance is we recognize there are risks in life that we cannot afford to take. So we study the options, and put our faith and money in the insurance company we determine to be trustworthy to insure our life at the cost we feel we can afford.
If we're honest there's a lot of faith we put in our insurance carriers: We never go visit the home office to make sure they are there, nor read the actual policy from cover to cover, nor understand all of the plan limitations and exclusions as we should, but we do apply faith.
Our 'faith' in an insurance company usually isn't a blind faith, though there are swindlers who sell bogus policies for companies that never existed. We buy in faith, based on the reputation of the company, its history, claims-paying experience, and from the personal testimony of others we know. We are offered a contract to study so that we understand what the company is offering, what we can expect to receive, and what our obligations are under the contract. Track with me as I apply this logic to spiritual matters regarding faith in Jesus.
FEELINGS DON'T DEFINE FACT NOR TRUTH
Our feeling a policy provision is true never makes it true, even if we think it should be true. Although the company representatives do make claims, with insurance it comes down to the policy contract terms. When the big claim comes, pleading ignorance will not work, not blaming the representative. If we are offered the contract to read and chose not to so, we will suffer the consequences.
In a similar way, the story of Christianity claims that the Bible is God's "contract" with humanity. Instead of the word contract, the Bible uses the term Covenant.
The Bible begins as many stories do with an epic launching statement
"In the Beginning, God created the Heavens and the Earth".
From there the Old Testament tells a grand and unvarnished story of God's love for this creation he made, describes his creations constant rebellion as they fall into darkness over and over again, and the many chances the God offers his people over the centuries to return to a loving relationship with their God.
The New Testament continues and tells the story of Jesus, described as the Prophet, Savior, Messiah, and King...God himself, come in human form to make things right with his creation directly. From beginning to end the Bible speaks of a coming ruler who will right the world's wrongs and ultimately win the battle and end all evil.
BLIND FAITH OR NOT?
Fortunately, we live in a time were the biblical contract can be carefully studied like never before. We can walk today where Jesus walked (I did so this year!). We can read and study the 4 different first-hand accounts of Jesus life, written by men not trying to create a religion, but testify as to what they witnessed first-hand. Historically, we know that at least 10 of the 12 original disciples of Jesus were killed for their faith. Would you die today for a lie?
Ignorance is not bliss and can be fatal.
The Bible speaks about how everyone has some sense of the existence of God.
Romans 1:20 For since the creation of the world God's invisible qualities--his eternal power and divine nature--have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.
The biblical author Paul was actually a religous leader who vowed to kill all Christians in the name of God. He had and encounter with the living Jesus that changed his life forever, and convinced him that Jesus is indeed the Messiah that was promised, who is offering eternal life to anyone--Jew or non-jew, who will believe in Him.
In his inspired writings he shares a truth that looking at our amazing world alone points to an infinite, powerful, and creative God. In creation alone, we are left without excuse for not offering faith in a God. However, we are not left to understand God by creation alone. The only way to understand an infinite God is for that God to reveal himself clearly.
In the Life of Jesus, God personally introduced himself in the form of a man, born in time and history. He came in humility and used the title of himself as the 'Son of Man, and the Son of God'.
During Jesus short 3 years of active ministry, he backed up his Kingdom message and claims by raising the dead to life, healing the sick, and showing that he is above even natural laws (through miracles and signs).
His witnessed resurrection from the dead and return to Heaven showed his supremacy over even death itself, showing indisputably that he was who he claimed to be, not a simple man but the Son of God. Jesus raising from the dead gives enormous hope to christians who put faith in Jesus, that they too may rise from the dead through faith in Jesus, as he promised.
The fact of Jesus Christ being alive today is a Believer's spiritual life assurance policy: And the Bible is God's contract with humanity.
If you've never read the Bible for yourself, and just judged it based on what you're read or heard from others, I invite you to a life changing experience that can change you forever.
An excellent starting place can be found at http://www.thebibleproject.com The Bible project has created a bible read-through program that gives you a 6-8 minute video outlining and illustrating each book of the bible, so that you as a reader can better understand what is going on. They have an excellent app called the Read Scripture app, available on both Iphone and Android platforms. They do an excellent job showing how all of the Bible is a unified story that leads to Jesus. Another massive tool for learning about biblical matters can be found at www.biblehub.com
Coming into a personal relationship with God allows us to experience the very presence of God, which is cultivated as a person grows in faith. As we grow to know God personally his love changes us: our outlook, our priorities, our character, and how we interact with others are all affected for the good. We can be freed from anxiety, and worry, and fear that can smother us. You know what I'm talking about. Not that a Christian doesn't encounter all of these things, but God's love can help us overcome the fear that can paralyze.
It's all in the Book
The Bible starts in Genesis 1:1 with God simply stating "In the Beginning God created the heavens and the earth". These simple 10 works are profound and vast in implication. The bible starts describing a God who is powerful enough and creative enough to both create the Universe as we can scientifically understand it today, and creative enough to explain the world we can see today.
In the last book, Revelation, God reveals in beautiful and dark poetry how our human history will wrap up, with God orchestrating a final game plan upon the earth, judging both the evil and good, rescuing others. Jesus here is pictured not as the humble servant, but as the returning King of Kings, and Judge of both the living and the dead.
The book does offer a happy destiny for those who trust in Jesus and live by faith, but a righteous and dark ending for those who reject Jesus as Lord.
It's the most important thing I could ever pen on this website.
I have to talk about these things, and need to risk losing a few prospective clients who may be offended by my talking about Jesus.
The Bible is a slowly unfolding love story between a loving Father, and children that went astray. It is a story of redemption, longing, and life. It has books with both gritty and joyful tales and filled with lessons of struggle and heartache, as humans fail to live up to the holy standards of a perfect God. The good, bad, and ugly side of humanity are shared fearlessly and unapologetically. It's the story of our ancient parents, your parents, and people today. It connects us all from the first human to the last.
What could be more important?
In Hebrews 1:1-2, the writer explained how the Old Testament shares about how God spoke to us in the Past, but in the New Testament Jesus is revealed as God in the flesh: Consider.
Hebrews 1:1 " In the past God spoke to our ancestors through the Prophets, at many times and in various ways, 2 but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom also he made the universe. 3 The Son (Jesus) is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word. After he had provided purification for sins (died on the cross), he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in Heaven"
We extend faith to many things we do not fully understand. I humbly submit that we can only understand God to the degree that he reveals himself to us. We learn most about God in the person of Jesus, for that is how he has revealed himself our time.
If the Bible is the contract of life and death, the contract we have been given to examine and reject or accept....have you studied it for yourself?
Finally, if you accept that Bible as God's revelation to humanity, Jesus cannot be contained and reduced to a human who lived and died 2000 years ago, or a dead teacher or prophet to be respected. The claim is he rose from the dead, and is the living God in Heaven today--alive and at work in this world today through his Followers, the Church.
NO ONE IS GOOD ENOUGH TO DESERVE HEAVEN
As we study the Bible we learn that we can do nothing to impress or buy-off God enough to give us a pass in the end, any more than we'd expect a life insurance plan to pay off if we stop paying premiums. Consider the self-evident truth written about eternity in the book of Psalms, written around A.D. 1000 or so: This was written 1000 years before Jesus came, but is still so true:
From Psalm 49 No one can redeem the life of another or give to God a ransom for them—the ransom for a life is costly, no payment is ever enough—so that they should live on forever and not see decay".
[King David understood this truth 1000 bce, do you today?]
The Bible teaches that everyone has sinned and our sin holds a penalty of death. A perfect and holy God refuses to live in the presence of evil, corruption, and sin. So how can a holy God and an unholy people be reunited?
THERE IS GREAT NEWS AND HOPE!
The Bible teaches that God sent his own son into the world to pay a ransom, and make clean an unclean people.
At our local water treatment plants, sewage is made clean and pure to drink again. How much more can God forgive and make our hearts pure again if we ask for forgiveness?
I John 1:9 states: "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and cleanse us from unrighteousness"
This is the Gospel, which means good news! With his very blood, Jesus fully paid the debt of our sin and restored the broken contract made between humans and a Holy God. We can experience a relationship with Jesus today by faith alone, not by Good works.
When Jesus rose from the dead and left for Heaven, he left part of himself behind in the person of the Holy Spirit. The apostle Paul explained it this way:
Ephesians 1:13. "And you also were included in Christ when you heard the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation. When you believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God's possession--to the praise of his glory"."
TRUSTING IN JESUS BRINGS YOU INTO A FAMILY: A WORLDWIDE CHURCH
So part of being a Christian is to be a part of something big, universal, and infinitely important. Believing in Jesus joins you and me with a family of over 1 billion people, known as the church (little c). The Greek word for Church simply meant, 'Sent Ones'. The point is, you belong to something big when you know Jesus. He views each of us as valuable intrinsically, not because of our good works or character, race or sex.
The Bible teaches that when we believe in Jesus as Lord, you are adopted into God's family as permanent heirs, sons and daughters. However, God never forces anyone to believe, much like we do not have insurance until we sign our acceptance of the terms and conditions, and make our premium payment.
Jesus calls us to faith, but we must accept the free offer of adoption. That's part of faith, not unlike an insurance contract going into effect without our consent....it doesn't happen. There are always terms and conditions in all things.
A FEW WORDS ON 'HEAVEN', OR THE ETERNAL FUTURE
According to biblical revelation, while the book of Genesis starts with God 'walking' in some sense with humanity in closeness on earth, we read in the book of Revelation that God will once again live with us where we can directly experience his presence.
In the final picture we walk with God once again not on pillowy clouds, but on a New and restored Earth. Not in a garden, but a massive garden city, no longer tempted by the presence or power of sin, decay, and death.
In the meantime, prior to this restoration, when a person dies in Christ today, they can have confidence that they will be with the Lord in Heaven, which is simply the unseen realm where God lives.
My Dad died a few years back, and our family draws great comfort in believing that death is not the end, but the start of eternal life, and I'll see my Dad again, walking free from sickness and pain. His mind clear, his body strong, his spirit undivided by all the garbage of this world.
WHEN YOU THINK OF LIFE AFTER DEATH, DO YOU HAVE FAITH THAT YOU WILL LIVE WITH A PERFECT GOD IN PEACE OR IS THERE A SENSE OF DREAD AND THE UNKNOWN. READ THE CONTRACT!
Consider from the book of Revelation 21 at John's prophetic description :
Revelation 21: “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”
He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!” Then he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.”
C.S. Lewis was quoted as saying,
"Christianity, if false, is of no importance, and, if true is of infinite importance. What it cannot be is moderately important."
JESUS IS GOD
Some people today challenge if the Bible really teaches that Jesus was God in the flesh. Jesus is so central in the Bible as the focal point of our connecting with God, then the premise that the Bible teaches Jesus as God should be solidly established. To help you explore this notion please click on the link below
PICKING A BIBLE VERSION TO READ
So if you've managed to read this far and want to begin to read the Bible for yourself. Here are a few tips for what it's worth.
A great place to start is by reading the book of John in the New Testament. It's a story about Jesus. What a great place to start. Matthew, Mark, and Luke tell different accounts of Jesus life and teachings, offering different emphasis and details. I'm a huge fan of the Read Scripture App, bucause it embeds short videos to better help you understand what you are reading.
The Gospels are like 4 first-hand observers describing a car accident. All witnessing the event from different positions, but the story details have an amazing consistency, strengthening our ability to trust the accuracy of the accounts.
Although there are many great translations of the Bible from the original Greek and Hebrew, I would encourage you to try the New International Version (NIV), as it was translated over a 20 years period by scholars of different theological leanings and denominational slants. It's been updated recently as well.
I love the bible website http://www.biblegateway.com because it has an outstanding audio bible options.
As a bible student, I can't say enough about the website http://www.biblehub.com Whether you're a pastor, a new follower, or in between, http://www.biblehub.com offers every tool imaginable to help you understand the Bible. The Bible was written in Hebrew (Old Testament) and Greek for the New Testament. You can study the Bible from the original language, breaking down every word...amazing stuff!
DON'T READ THE BIBLE FOR THE HEAD, BUT FOR THE HEART
I encourage you to not read about Jesus just to gain knowledge alone, but to seek answers regarding eternal life. Life is just too short and at age 50 now I've passed well beyond the 1/2 way point of life. As I age time continues to pass faster and faster. Tomorrow may be here faster than you expect. Death is not the end for a believer in Jesus, only the beginning.
JESUS CLAIMED TO BE THE ONLY WAY TO GOD
Jesus claimed in John 14:6 "I am the Way, and the Truth, and the Life. No one comes to the Father but through me. If you really knew me, you would know the Father as well".
Now I may step on a few toes here, but Jesus clear understood premise defeats any notion that 'all religions lead to God' position. I sure like the idea personally that everyone will go to Heaven...but for that to be true my feelings would need to outweigh the facts. The biblical contract, if you read it closely, says that Jesus is the only way to God.
I am happy that God freely offers eternal life to all who would accept it. God does not force salvation on anyone, that would strip us of our free will. He offered it as a free gift to all who will believe and put faith in Jesus. Does that mean our 'faith/action saves us...our free will...not at all! The gift is what saves. Our contractual obligation to be saved is to accept the gift, which is the gift-giver, then work to fulfill our end of the contractual obligation.
If a person could end up in Heaven through another path (like Buddha's Enlightenment, or faith in Allah), then Jesus died for nothing (to use human reasoning). Christian's often sound narrow-minded, but it is because we embrace the logic above. We take Jesus at his word and take a little flack in this life for trusting his perspective on the matter without knowing all the answers. It's not for me to judge if anyone will be saved or not.
To seek eternal life implies rightly that you sense your spiritual deadness and need what only Jesus can provide. The Biblical claim is that our sins make us spiritually dead and polluted and that Jesus is the only one who can restore life and cleanse our hearts and make them clean.
If you had an earthly billion dollar debt and were unwilling to admit it, no one could help you, not even Bill Gates! Likewise, admitting our sins to God is called 'Confession'--admitting what God already knows. Asking for help to turn away from sin is called 'Repentance'. It's not just changing the mind, but setting the feet to walk another direction.
If Jesus is God (as the bible declares), then the pursuit of Jesus is the very pursuit of God, which is the way to life, and the truth about everything important. Jesus said to his followers, "If you have seen me, you have seen the Father". The journey of faith begins and ends with Jesus.
Do you have anything in your belief portfolio worth giving your life for?
A FINAL WORD ON SOUL INSURANCE
Soul Insurance is a contract first introduced by Jesus over 2000 years ago. The company is a worldwide, international corporation known as 'The Church", which boasts over a billion shareholders, a 2000 year track record, and has enrollees from every country on earth, a worldwide distribution system, and the same founder and CEO since inception. Every valid death claim has been paid in full, and the policy count has risen from a dozen enrollees to over 3 billion, with living benefits enjoyed by millions daily.
"The catch" remains the fact that the premiums are offered at no cost, but the policy must be accepted by faith to become valid. Faith does not save you, but you must have faith to be saved.
Today's a great day to evaluate your faith portfolio and the object of your faith.
For more information read your Bible!