Heresies of the Past and What They Mean for the Present

Heresies of the Past and What They Mean for the PresentGod has given us the Word of God. The holy written Word of God.

2 Timothy 3:16

All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right.

Read More »

Are you for God? Or against Him?

Are you for God?You’re either for God or against God. Yes, I know, that’s a pretty bold statement. It may seem very harsh and cruel (though know that I’m not trying to be that way). But it is a true statement. It’s a very hard truth to realize, but it is still true. And that’s the stark reality of it.

Just think for a moment, there are trillions of people living in this world. Trillions. And all of them, each and everyone are for God or against God. There is no in between stage. It’s one way or another. It’s black and white. There are no grey areas. All those people must live their lives either for God or against God. Every one of them has a decision that has to be made at some point in their lifetime: Will they be for God, or will they go against Him? Everyone has to make that choice.

Why? Because we can’t be a part of both sides. It’s impossible.

God doesn’t want us to be for Him some of the time and then not at other times.

He doesn’t want us to love Him, but not live for Him. Or vice versa.

He doesn’t want our bodies to be for him, but not our hearts.

God wants our full devotion or none at all.

And that Bible makes it pretty clear.

Mark 9:40

Anyone who is not against us is for us.

And again.

Matthew 12:30

Anyone who isn’t with me opposes me, and anyone who isn’t working with me is actually working against me.

Jesus makes it very clear that you’re either on one side or the other. There is no in between. You can’t be in both places at once.

God wants our devotion. Our total and undivided devotion. He doesn’t want us if we aren’t going to choose to totally be for Him. He doesn’t want a piece of us. He doesn’t want just a part of us.

That is one of the reasons why God had the tree of good and evil in the garden of Eden. It is one of the reasons that Jesus sacrificed so much for us. He died, knowing that some would choose God and some wouldn’t. He went through all of that, knowing that everyone wouldn’t come to him. Isn’t that incredible? That God still gave us the chance to choose. He wanted us to have the chance to choose. He didn’t want us follow Him like robots, just doing what we’re told. He wants to follow Him because we want to. Because we love Him. And for no other reason than that.

God has given us a choice. A choice. I don’t think any of the other religions really have a god that gives you a free choice like this. But God does. He always will.

And it’s life decision to live for God or not. Have you made that decision? Do you live for Him? Do you love Him? I hope so. If you choose to live for Him, it will change your life forever. You will never be the same.

-G. Paige 

Here’s to You: You are Right in His Sight

Here's to You_

Here’s to you:

I believe that we set ourselves up for failure, a lot. We push ourselves too hard and too far to accomplish more than is possible. We want to believe that we can do it. That we can make it. That we can finish it. We want to be perfect. We expect ourselves to be. And it’s that expectation that goes against us when we fail. When we don’t finish it or make it. When we sin. That expectation turns into guilt that will have us rebuking and reprimanding ourselves. It makes us feel worthless. It fills us with need to somehow fix it.Read More »

We Are Set Free

MEXICOChange. I almost shiver at hearing that word sometimes. There are good changes and there are bad changes. But, for the most part, we don’t like any type of change. Change may bring sadness or difficulties or happiness or something new different. And we don’t always like something new.

The Jews didn’t like change. They loved their traditions and laws and sacrifices. So when Jesus, the Son of God, came down to earth and told them to change, they hated him. He offered them something new and different, and most of the people rejected him. They crucified him. Jesus gave them freedom from the law and forgiveness of sins without sacrifices. He offered them new life. Eternal life. But for this they had him beaten and hanged on a cross.

Matthew 24:9

Then you will be arrested, persecuted, and killed. You will be hated all over the world because you are my followers.
‭‭
This is why Christians are persecuted more so than most. We’re different. Our “religion” isn’t a religion. It doesn’t tell you to work harder and be good so that you can earn your way to Heaven. All religions ask something of you. They give you laws to follow in hopes that you might earn your way to Heaven or Paradise or something like that. But you can never do that. None of us can. We’re too sinful and fallen. We can’t do anything on our own.

The Jews were in the same predicament as everyone else who followed a religion, except for the important fact that they followed the one and only true God. If you look throughout the Old Testament you’ll see that they couldn’t live up to God’s standards. Again and again they fell short.

Jesus changed things. We can now have a one on one relationship with God. We don’t have to be good enough for Him; we just have to believe in Him. There is no more need for sacrifices. All we have to do is ask for forgiveness and He will never fail to forgive us of all our transgressions. We were in slavery under the law, but now we are set free.

This is why someone will always be persecuting us (at least until Jesus returns). Our sinful human nature wants to work for salvation. It gives us a feeling of self, of identity (though our identity can be found in Christ). We like to believe that we did something on our own. Like God isn’t actually in control of our lives. But that’s not true. For everything we’ve done or ever will do has been because of God. All the glory belongs to Him.

Let’s rejoice over the freedoms we have today in Christ.

We are set free from the law of sin and death.

Romans 8:3

The law of Moses was unable to save us because of the weakness of our sinful nature. So God did what the law could not do. He sent his own Son in a body like the bodies we sinners have. And in that body God declared an end to sin’s control over us by giving his Son as a sacrifice for our sins.

This doesn’t mean to live however an ungodly lifestyle you want.  Because of this precious gift God has given us we should want to live by the example Jesus set before us. We shouldn’t ever waste such freedom that way.

Jesus changed the world. Now it’s our chance to live out that change to the fullest.

-G. Paige

What It Means To Have “A Heart Redeemed”

Blogging Image(2)I recently realized that I never did a post about my site’s name: “A Heart Redeemed”. It is not really necessary, but I thought it’d be fun and would be helpful and informative to all those who follow my blog.

But here’s a little backstory first, I decided to have a blog after seeing my friend Amanda doing so well at her blog (Go check it out, by the way!). I also thought there were a good many benefits to having one too. I could go on blog tours for books that I love. It could probably help me get the chance to read some books before they came out! I also was inspired by my friend with idea that I could share my faith without sounding intrusive on here.

Of course, after deciding to do a blog, I had to figure out a name. That is one of the hardest parts for most people, but it ended up only taking a few hours of brainstorming with my friend. The first name I came up with that I liked was “A Heart Unchained” it reminded me of that verse in the song Amazing Grace, but someone on WordPress already had that name. So then my friend suggested “A Heart Redeemed”. And that’s how I got my site’s name.

But what does it mean? Well, it is a term that applies to all Christians. Everyone is a sinner, we all know that. Ever since Adam and Eve sinned, this world has been consumed by sin. What was supposed to be a perfect world, became a fallen one. Before Christ, we tried to redeemed ourselves by following all of God’s commandments and laws and offering sacrifices of animals for our sins, but all those rules only proved how fallen we were.

Psalms 49:7

Yet they cannot redeem themselves from death by paying a ransom to God.

But then Christ came down to earth, fully man and fully God. He paid the ultimate sacrifice for all of our sins: death. His perfect death was the only sacrifice that could fully blot out all our sin forever and ever.

Isaiah 44:22

I have swept away your sins like a cloud.

I have scattered your offenses like the morning mist.

Oh, return to me,

for I have paid the price to set you free.

The theological definition of redeem is “to deliver from sin and its consequences by means of a sacrifice offered for the sinner”. That is what Christ has done for us. Christ redeemed us. He has saved us from Hell. He wiped away all our sin so now we look perfect in God’s eyes.

So the title “A Heart Redeemed” comes from the fact that I am redeemed through Christ’s sacrifice. We all are redeemed.

Christ has redeemed us and there is nothing that we can ever do to repay that.

Now tell me that isn’t beautiful. This shows that God’s love for us is more than we can imagine.

‭‭Job‬ ‭19:25‬

But as for me, I know that my Redeemer lives, and he will stand upon the earth at last.

I hope that you enjoyed this post and learned a little something from it or maybe it refreshed your mind on something that we can so easily forget.

-G. Paige

‭‭

 

‭‭

The True Reason For Christmas

ahrblogChristmas. The time close to the end of the year that about half the world celebrates. Many of us go out and buy a Christmas tree maybe by cutting one down or buying one at a store (unless you have a fake one at home to put up). We usually will decorate that tree with lights and ornaments and much of the house in the same way. The adults  go shopping for presents for their kids (if they have any), sisters, brothers, aunts, uncles, parents, and all their relatives. They might buy for their friends too. We’ll listen to Christmas music in the time following up to December 25th and sometime after. We’ll make ton of Christmas cookies that probably aren’t the healthiest, but still so good. Hopefully most of us get to spend a lot of time with family and relatives. It is a time of peace and joy…and happiness.Read More »

God and the New Testament (Part 2)

ahrHere is the second and last part about God, His love, and His relationship with us. If you missed the last part, you can check it out here. This part will focus more on God in the New Testament and in this present time.

God is three in one. The Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. For the most part, we only see the Father in the Old Testament (but all of them are there). In the New Testament we see all three, though Jesus is the most prominent. They each add something as a whole. The Father is the one who created the world, Jesus is the one who saves the world (at least, those who accept him), and the Holy Spirit who comes into our hearts and fills us. The Holy Spirit is like our conscience, always urging us to do what’s right and letting us feel guilty when we fall short. The Holy Spirit is the one who gave the twelve apostles the ability to speak in tongues and allow people (even in today’s time) to preform miracles.

In the New Testament the Father shows His love by sending His only Son into the world, fully God and fully man. He was born of a virgin in the little town of Bethlehem. Throughout his life on earth Jesus fulfilled all the prophecies about him in the Old Testament. He had twelve disciples, one of whom betrayed him. He preformed many many miracles, including raising someone from the dead, and he taught those who would listen (usually in parables). He never sinned.

After he was betrayed, Jesus was tortured then crucified and died. God let it happen, even though His son asked for the suffering to be taken away from Him. It was the only way to save us.

Luke 22:42

Father, if you are willing, please take this cup of suffering away from me. Yet I want your will to be done, not mine.

God is so holy and sovereign that He can’t even look at sin. We can’t even begin to comprehend God’s majesty. That is why Jesus said this at his crucifixion.

Mark 15:34

Then at three o’clock Jesus called out with a loud voice, “Eloi, Eloi, lema sabachthani?” which means “My God, my God, why have you abandoned me?

God turned away from His own son because Jesus had taken on the sins of the whole world (past, present, and future) so that God couldn’t stand to look at him. But Jesus rose again on the third day after his death and once appearing to many people he arose to Heaven to sit on the throne at the right hand of God forever.

Just think for a moment. God gave up His only Son. Of course, I’m not a parent, but I am sure some of you who read this are. Would you give up your child to save the world? He wouldn’t even save the whole world, only those who accepted him as their lord and savior. I can’t even begin to imagine that. But God did it for us. Now that is just plain amazing. It shows us His love, but also His hate of sin. His own Son was the only sufficient sacrifice that could wipe away our sin.

Before Jesus went to heaven, he gave us a “mission”.

Matthew 28:19

Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.

This command is for all Christians. Considering what God did, Jesus did, to save us, we should be glad to do this. The rest of the New Testament gives us great examples of this task being carried out.

I’m not perfect, no one is. This point of this discussion is to know that God doesn’t change. He is the same forever. He has always loved us and He will always hate sin. So lets remember that. Okay?

-G. Paige

Baptism: Why Do We Do It?

aheartredeemedWhat is the meaning of baptism? What is its purpose? Should Christians get baptized? Should we not? Are we saved because we get baptized, or is it just a add-on? These questions and more I hope to answer for you today as well as I can.

Baptism. We see it everywhere and in many different places. It is also done in many different ways. We see it in churches around the world. Some people do it in the ocean or sea or lake or pond or…..you know what I mean. Sometimes people are fully submerged and sometimes water is sprinkled on them. But what does the Bible say about all of this? Lets take a look.

Matthew 28:19

Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.

‭I think this verse takes out the question that we shouldn’t get baptized. Jesus, God’s Son calls us to! And if Jesus commands us to, well, then I think we should.

Now I’m going to step on some people’s toes here. I don’t mean to come across offensive, but some people just aren’t going to agree with me on this. So lets just get it over with and if you disagree you can tell me where in the Bible I’m wrong. I would love to hear what you think!

You do not have to get baptized to be saved. I can’t find it anywhere in the Bible where it says that you have to be baptized to be saved. There is even an example of it.

Luke 23:42-43

Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your Kingdom.” And Jesus replied, “I assure you, today you will be with me in paradise.”

‭‭This happens right before Jesus dies on the cross. There were two criminals crucified on either side of him. One scoffed at him; the other asked to be remembered in Heaven. Did this man (we don’t even know his name) have a chance to get baptized? No, he didn’t. But Jesus told told him that they would meet in paradise (essentially Heaven).

If you get the chance to be baptized, you should. We are called to. But it is not a necessity for salvation. And not everyone is going to get the chance. So if you get that chance, take it.

How should someone get baptized? Well, I think the best thing to do it to follow Christ’s example.

Matthew 3:6

And when they confessed their sins, he baptized them in the Jordan River.

John, known as John the Baptist, was baptizing in a river.

Matthew 3:16

After his baptism, as Jesus came up out of the water, the heavens were opened and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and settling on him.

John later baptized Jesus and from what I read here it seems that he was baptized through full immersion. That means totally submerged in water. I believe that’s what we should do too, since Christ did it that way. But I think this is one of those “open-handed” subjects, it doesn’t necessarily have to be followed and replicated.

There is one more thing that I would like to answer and I think that it is the most important question on baptism. What is the purpose or meaning of it? If there was no purpose, Christ wouldn’t have told us to baptize.

Baptism is an external expression of an internal change. It is like a declaration. By getting baptized you’re proclaiming to the world that you have accepted Christ as your Lord and Savior.

That’s why we baptize. It is an act of faith. I hope we can all take that step.

-G. Paige

‭‭