Month 7:24, Week 4:2 (Shanee/Bikkurim), Year 5935:195 AM|
Gregorian Calendar: Friday 21 October 2011
Getting Eternal Life
You'd Be Amazed What the Scriptures Say
Go to any minister ask ask him what you need to do to get eternal life, and you'll probably be given a formula that has been uncritically repeated generation after generation with standand sets of cherry-picked Scripture. Find any Evangelical Christian tract and you'll see what I mean.
Continued in Part 2
About four years ago, when I created a website for babes in the Besorah (Gospel), I reproduced some tracts produced by well known evangelical ministries. Out of curiosity, I thought I would examine some of these standard themes about salvation, for example, and find out what the whole counsel of scripture on a particular subject was. Eternal life was one of them.
I am sure you will agree there is no more important subject. So I sifted carefully through the B'rit Chadashah (New Testament) Scriptures to find out everything that was said on the subject, beginning with the sayings of Yah'shua (Jesus), moving on to the apostles who knew Him in mortality, and ending with the one (Paul) who met Him after His resurrection. I found fifteen clear statements on what you have to do to gain eternal life:
If you'd like to see the Scriptures that assert these things, then please see my article, How Do I Get Eternal Life?
- 1. Love Yahweh with all your mind, might and strength, and love your neighbour as yourself (that's everyone);
- 2. Obey the Old Testament Commandments (Mitzvot) and specifically the Ten Commandments (which are summaries of all the others);
- 3. Overcome idolatry (e.g. love of money - anything that might come between you and Yahweh/God, lawful and unlawful);
- 4. Follow Yah'shua (Jesus) (imitate His life, do as He says);
- 5. Hear/listen to Yah'shua's (Jesus') words (i.e. study your New Testament diligently);
- 6. Be prepared to sacrifice and be persecuted for Yah'shua's (Jesus') sake (passive faith is not enough);
- 7. Believe the words of Yahweh (God the Father) in the Old Testament (that's primary Scripture for all believers);
- 8. Believe Yah'shua (Jesus) (as the Messiah - your Master and Saviour, deliverer from sin);
- 9. Love your brother (view him as better than yourself);
- 10. Hate your life in the world system (don't imitate the world and its sinful behaviour);
- 11. Follow and serve Yah'shua (Jesus) (faith is not passive but active);
- 12. Persist in doing good (you have to be consistent);
- 13. Keep yourself in Yahweh's ahavah (love) (make sure that His love drives all you do);
- 14. Become holy or set-apart from the world system (it's a completely different lifestyle to Yahweh's); and
- 15. Receive it as a free gift from Elohim (God) (you can't earn the power of eternal life - it comes only by emunah/faith).
When I first published this article, a very angry Evangelical Christian said I was a heretic and had twisted the Scriptures. Actually, I simply quoted the Scriptures and let them speak for themselves. Is there really any other way? As students and teachers of the Bible we must come before Yahweh without a preconceived set of doctrines and without an agenda or we will simply allow them to colour and distort what we read. Suffice to say, I find very few churches and assemblies who do not put every Scriptural verse through the sieve of their doctrinal traditions and creeds. If we are serious about eternal life, we cannot possibly do that, for how will believing a lie serve anyone's best interests?
Yah'shua (Jesus) is not an Evangelical Christian and He is not a Messianic (though I have heard some Baptists claim that John the Baptist was a Baptist). He is what He says He is. And if He lists the 15 points above as being the conditions for receiving eternal life, then we had better take Him at His Word.