TRUE CHRISTIANITY & THE REWARD
Early and largely first writing.
Article zC    around 1983

     It is only because of the goodness of God that it is possible for any one to be a child of God (Romans 2:4).  His Spirit reproves the world of sin and draws all men to Him through His plan of salvation (John 16:8).  Following is a list of guidelines explaining who are the children of God.     zC-1
     God's children are those who have answered the Spirits call to repent and believe the gospel.  Who do not base their faith on human reasoning or understanding, or on the evidence of things that are seen.  Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen" (Heb 11:1). Who believe that God is, and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him.  Who are willing to confess Christ, to uphold His teachings and to obey His Spirit in the face of a wicked world or lukewarm Christians.  Who accept God as an almighty, all wise, everlasting, deity, full of truth, righteousness, love, grace, and mercy not questioning His judgments and ways. Who humble themselves under the mighty hand of God, recognizing their wretchedness and sinfulness seeing their need of the physician.  Those who accept that they deserve eternal perdition and that they with out the plan of salvation would be lost and could do nothing of themselves to be saved.  Who have their robes washed in the blood of the Lamb by accepting Christ as their righteousness, sanctification, and redemption (1 Cor 1:30).  Who after being born again and doing all diligence to stand, yet see themselves sinful poor and needy.  Who accept Christ as their redeemer and the author of their faith because He died in their place for their sins and is risen again satisfying and alrighteous God (Isaiah 53:11).  Who accept Christ as their righteousness, sanctification and finisher of their faith, for it is through Him that after conversion their remains a sacrifice for short comings and unwillful sins which the Christian will commit.  Who accept all of the council of God thus believing that faith with out works is dead (James 2:20).  Whose faith activates works and whose repentance brings forth fruits meat for repentance (Matt 3:8).  Who have received the Holy Ghost and are lead by him saying not my will but thine be done (Matt 26:39).  Who are willing to forsake all to follow Christ and to deny themselves and take up their cross and follow Jesus (Mark 8:34, Matt 16:24), bearing the persecution the Christian is required to bear (2 Tim 3:12).  Who present their bodies a living sacrifice Holy acceptable unto God remembering it is only their reasonable service (Romans 12:1), and recognize after we have done those things that are our duty to do we are yet unprofitable servants (Luke 17:10).  Who take God at His word and study to show themselves approved unto God rightly dividing the word of truth (2 Tim 2:15), not wresting the scriptures to their own destruction (2 Peter 3:16).  Who seek God with their whole heart (Jer 29:11).  Those who love truth and call upon God in truth (Psa 145:18).  Who love God with all their heart, soul, and mind and love their neighbor as themselves (Matt 22:39).  Who love their spiritual brother and do not judge or condemn, but rather forgive everyone (Matt 5:14-15, Luke 6:37).  Who do not forsake the assembling of themselves together, but exhort one another daily, striving to attain the oneness in the church, the one body, as Christ prayed for in John chapter 17.  Who fear God, obey His commandments, and delight themselves in Him (Psa 37:4).  Who seek first the kingdom of God and it's righteousness (Matt 6:33).  Who wait on the Lord keeping courage (Psa 27:14).  Who endure to the end and pray rather than to faint.  Who ask, seek, and knock, asking in faith nothing wavering (Matt 7:7-8, James 1:6).  Who strive to enter at the straight gate and fight not as one that beateth the air (Luke 13:24, 1 Cor 9:26).  Those who pray without ceasing and whose delight is in the law of the Lord and on it do meditate day and night (1 Thess 5:17, Psa 1:2).     zC-2

Christian Rewards
     The rewards of the child of God are priceless involving the present life and the life to come.  "For bodily exercise profiteth little: but godliness is profitable unto all things, having promise of the life that now is, and of that which is to come" (1 Tim 4:8).  "And Jesus answered and said, verily I say unto you, there is no man that hath left house, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my sake, and the gospel's, But he shall receive an hundredfold now in this time, houses, and brethren, and sisters and mothers, and children, and lands, with persecutions; and in the world to come eternal life" (Mark 10:29-30).     zC-3
     In the present life God's blessings to His children are many.  He causes all things to work together for good to them that love God, to them who are called according to His purpose (Romans 6:28).  The Lord is their keeper, .....  no good thing will he with hold from them that walk uprightly" (Psa 84:11).  He never leaves nor forsakes His own (Heb 13:5).  The very hairs of our heads are numbered by Him (Matt 10:30) Gives grace for every trial.  In His Word He promises to fulfill the desires of them that fear Him and delight themselves in Him, the righteous and humble (Psa 37:4, 145:19, 10:17, Proverbs 10:24).  He heals the broken in heart and binds up their wounds (Psa .147:3).  Cares for His children like a loving father would his child in discipline and teaching while also giving good gifts (Psa 103:13, Heb 12:6 Matt 7:11).  Knows our needs before we ask Him (Matt 6:8).  Delivers in time of trouble when called upon, answering the prayer of faith (Matt 21:22).  Has promised to hear us if we ask anything according to His will (1 John 5:14).  Is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think (Eph 3:20).  "Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered" (Romans 8:26).  Does not leave us to be lonesome or alone but has planned His church the one body, the kingdom of Christ on earth, the pillar and ground of the truth where there is fellowship, guidance, comfort, encouragement, safety, and many other added blessings.  He also gives His children strong homes where marriages last and there is joy and love instead of homes of insecurity, strife, hate and divorce.  The Christian is privileged to be a partaker of the divine nature having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust (1 Peter 1:4).     zC-4
     Following is a list of characteristics the children of God are blest with compared to what they have been delivered from, although the Christian does recognize he is not perfect as Paul did when he said, "not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect".     zC-5
     Joy, depression; happiness, gloominess; peace, fear; security, anxiety; assurance, worry; calmness, tenseness; faith, doubt; hope, despondency; courage, despair; anticipation; dread; strength, weakness; rest, weariness; victory, defeat; success, failure; love, hate; gentleness, rudeness; patience, anger; long-suffering, irritable; humility, pride; goodness, evil; meekness, boisterous; light, darkness; direction, confusion; temperance, extremes; truth, deception; brokenness, bitterness; forgiveness, offendedness; abundance, poverty; contentment, covetousness; thankfulness, discontentment; liberality, greed; freedom, bondage; deliverance, captivity;.     zC-6
     With all the rewards of living for God in this time, yet the greatest reward by far is in the life to come.  The child of God will not only escape eternal damnation but will inherit a home in heaven of incomprehensible bliss. "But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God bath prepared for then that love him" (1 Cor 2:9).  Although God's Word and Spirit reveal in part to us the bliss of heaven yet we see as through a glass darkly (1 Cor 13:12).     zC-7
     One of the Christian's greatest rewards in heaven will be that his earnest desire, where in he groans, to be clothed with his house from heaven will be fulfilled.  That is to be changed from our earthly house which is our earthly body which is temporal and corrupted with the law of sin, causing evil inclinations, and to be clothed with a heavenly house, a new body which is everlasting, with no evil inclinations.  "And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and their shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away" (Rev 21:4).      zC-8
     The physical part of heaven is of indescribable beauty, the city and streets are of pure gold like as transparent glass, the foundations of the wall of the city are garnished with precious stones, the building of the wall is of jasper the river of life is there, flowing from the throne of God, clear as crystal, and in the midst of the street of it and on either side of it is the tree of life.  Read Rev 21:10-17, 22:1-5.     zC-9

Christian struggles
     The road on which the Christian travels is not easy or popular, "Because straight (difficult) is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it" (Matt 7:14).  "Yea, and all that will live Godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution" (2 Tim 3:12).  The Christian will have times of grief and sorrows, "For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth" (Heb 12:6).  "Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto then which are exercised thereby" (Heb 12:11).  He will be purged that he may bring forth more fruit (John 15:2).  He will have times of tribulation and testing, for every man's work shall be tried by fire (1 Cor 3:13).  Yet he has reason to be and is commanded to be, "Rejoicing in hope; patient in tribulation; continuing instant in prayer (Romans 12:12).  For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory" (2 Cor 4:17).  The Christian should not be alarmed because of the fiery trials he encounters, "Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you (1 Peter 4:12). The Christian should rather be alarmed if the Christian warfare does not seem real, feels quite self sufficient, and all seems well, being satisfied in just being a church member.  The following scriptures are not written in vain.  "Woe to them that are at ease in Zion..." (Amos 6:1).  "Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour (1 Peter 5:8).     zC-10

Christian Groweth
     The Christian seeing his many imperfections dare not despair, or compromise with them saying I never will be perfect anyway, but must press toward the mark going on to perfection (Heb  6:1).  "Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus.  I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus (Phil 3:12 & 14).  The Christian must accept his charge to bring forth more fruit (John 15:2), and to grow in grace and in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ (2 Peter 3:18).  If we have Spiritual understanding little or much it should be treasured greatly.  We should commit our lives more fully to God searching the scriptures for deeper knowledge of truth not drawing back for fear of what God may ask of us.  "...But if any man draw back, my soul shall have no pleasure in him" (Heb 10:38).  We should be very open for reproof or instruction from God through His Word or Spirit or through His Church or a brother, for if count our spiritual treasure of little value and close our spiritual ear or listen with a critical ear we will suffer the consequences as in Luke 8:18, "Take heed therefore how ye hear: for whosoever hath, to him shall be given; and whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken even that which he seemeth to have".  If we as the unprofitable servant referred to in Matt  25:14-30, bury our talent instead of multiplying it, God will also take our talent from us and give it to someone who has proved himself worthy of it, and we like the unprofitable servant will be cast out into outer darkness where there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.     zC-11

Examining Ourselves, Coming Before God
     Paul says, "Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith..." (2 Cor 13:5).  If we find ourselves lukewarm not feeling the nearness of God and Christian life seems somewhat dull or unreal we ought to seek the face of God earnestly.  If the fruits of the spirit are not seen in our life how can we claim that we are in the grace of God? "wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.  Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven" (Matt 7:20-21).  If our prayers are being hindered, if there are besetting sins, what ever the condition, let us come continually before God as the poor widow came before the unjust judge asking him to be delivered of her adversary, then we can be assured God though he bear long with us, will avenge us speedily (Luke 18:1-8).  Let us also come before God with the spirit of the woman of Canaan, who after she was compared with the dogs, she still desired the crumbs which fell from the masters table (Matt 15:21-28).  For the crumbs which fall from the table our master, Jesus, are pearls of a price that cannot be comprehended.  If we come before God with the spirit of the Canaanite woman with this humility and earnestness we can be assured that God will hear, and that He will deliver us from whatever snare of condition we may have become entangled with, for "...If God be for us, who can be against us?  (Romans 8:31).  If we meet the conditions we can be assured God will give us a home in heaven and bless us as in Mal 3:10, "Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the Lord of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you our a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it" (Mal 3:10).     zC-12

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