True Christianity is not about a person striving to attain a collection of good deeds and contributions like regularly praying, attending church, paying tithes and offerings, or volunteering time. The true walk with Christ is not an accumulation of good deeds in hopes of having a better relationship with God. It is rather a remembering what we already had with Him before our time on earth began.
Our salvation and deliverance from sin and the evil in our old life was given us by God before we were ever born here on earth!
We were called by God to walk with Him on this earth in our earthly bodies before we were ever born here on earth!
Sounds crazy, I know, and you are probably thinking, Wayne, you are going too far now. Come back to us. You are drifting up too far into the stratosphere.
But bear with me a minute. God has called us with a holy calling in accordance with His own plan and purpose, and we were in His plan and purpose and grace before our mothers gave birth to us here on earth!
Some may be asking, Where did you get this idea from? It’s right there in the Bible–the same one grandma and momma had. And this is what it says: “God who has saved us and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began” (II Tim. 1: 9) [Compare this to my paraphrasing of it in the above paragraphs].
This “holy calling” to be God’s son or daughter does not come down to us “according to our works.” We do not attain it because of anything we have done or could do, but because we were already included in His purpose–His plan to favor us that way. It is called grace, and this grace was given to us in Christ before time began on earth. Remember what Christ said: “You have been with me from the beginning” (John 15: 27). The word “beginning” in the Greek is the same one used in John 1: 1: “In the beginning was the Word…” denoting the timelessness of the origin of all things.
We must remember how the LORD (YAHWEH) questioned Job intensely about the creation: “Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth?…Who laid the cornerstone thereof when the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy?” (Job 38: 4-7).
The “sons of God” rejoicing at the creation of the earth? Yes. Isn’t that kind of like before the world came into being? Yes. And who are these sons of God? The word of God says that we are the sons of God! “Beloved, now are we the sons of God…and when He shall appear, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is” (I John 3: 2).
Also, we know that “as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God” (Rom. 8: 14). That’s us, brethren! Things are going to work out great for us that love God. If God is for us, who can be against us? For “we are the called according to His purpose.” He knew us before! He gave us this destiny before! This destiny “to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren” (Rom. 8: 28-29). Hey, I know I’m not the only one getting this right now because it says “many brethren” are going to be just like Him!
And let’s just say it out loud: We who He has “predestinated” to be like Christ–He has called us, “and whom He called, them He also justified, and whom He justified, them He also glorified”! (v. 30).
Glorified us! Notice this is in the past tense. Already done in God’s way of reckoning and doing things.
Wow! It is truly difficult sometimes for us to wrap our sometimes doubting little minds around these astounding promises, but there it is. His words, not mine. The “exceeding great and precious promises that Peter spoke of. That we “might be partakers of the divine nature” (II Pet. 1: 4).
And this is all in Christ. When we believe and trust in Him, then our inheritance manifests itself. Let us walk on in faith and assurance of these promises, not letting worldly man-thoughts hinder us from achieving what God already has spoken into existence for us. Kenneth Wayne Hancock