By John Larkins
If you think you have no personal responsibility in saving your soul, you are under the influence of a false teacher. Jesus was born as a human and spent 33 years enduring not just an ordinary trying experience (as we all do) but suffered disrespect, humiliation and torture, ending in a human death (but, then, resurrection). A big part of His mission on earth was to compensate His father for the great sin of Adam and Eve, thus reopening the gate to heaven for possible entrance of human souls into Paradise.
All during the ages before God directed Moses to train God’s chosen people in the basics of worshipping their creator, human souls that were not sent to Hell were being readied for the New Covenant, the New and everlasting Kingdom of God, The Way we know as the Church that is described in the writings of Jesus’ bishops-in-training. Although these numbers many have been relatively few, compared to the millions God sent to Hell, for instance, the inhabitants of Sodom and Gomorrah, reported hundreds of thousands who refused to allow the Israelites to enter the promised land and many other descriptions. Furthermore, Jesus provided the endowment of saving grace to the Catholic Church for all time following Christ’s resurrection.
As always, the best way to try and understand God’s will starts with the Bible message. The Bible writings were comprised of authenticated holy messages up to about the year 100 AD. After that, as 1 Timothy 3:15 notes, “The Church is the pillar and foundation of the truth.” This fulfills Jesus’s early grants of authority to His first Pope, Peter, that “what you say on earthis heard in heaven and what is heard in heaven is heard by my Father.” In Matthew 16:18, Jesus proclaims that the “gates of Hell will not prevail against My Church.”
Note that 1,500 years later, a defrocked Catholic priest arrogantly established the first long term heretic “worship association” to compete with Christ’s Church. Martin Luther had no delegation of authority to save anyone’s soul, including his own. So, a key part of Jesus Christ’s mission was to provide A Way for us who live today, but perhaps not tomorrow. In Mark 16: 15-16, Jesus charges His apostles with the Great Commission: “And he said unto them, go ye into the world and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved, but he that believeth not shall be damned.”
Matthew 28:16-20 says, “Then the 11 disciples went away into Galilee, into a mountain where Jesus had appointed them. And when they saw Him, they worshipped Him, but some doubted. And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, ‘All power is given to me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and in the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you, and lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.’”
John 20: 21-23 says, “Then Jesus said unto them again, ‘Peace be unto you, as my Father hath sent me, even so send you.’ And when He had said this, He breathed on them and said unto them, receive ye the Holy Ghost: whosesoever sins ye remit, they are remitted; and whosoever sins ye retain, they are retained.”
The words are not so exceedingly long, but explaining them might take a little longer. Just for the most revolutionary, Jesus sends His apostles “As my Father sent me.” So, the apostles are granted the authority and responsibility to dispense salvation itself, in whole cloth! Also, a result of rejecting Christ’s teaching is not tolerated. After death, unrepented, it sends one to Hell!
For the past 15 years, John Larkins has evangelized on the street, door-to-door, in tent revivals and in church situations. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.