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The Bible says that the ticket to heaven is believing in Jesus Christ and accepting him as your Savior. In John, it also says that "anyone who doesn't obey the son will not experience eternal life..." Which one is it? I thought believing and accepting Christ was it....Sinning is considered not "obeying." Anyone who doesn't obey is cast under God's angry judgement...

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Hi Sharon,  Yes I agree

 

....it will result in a changed life.  Ask the Holy Spirit to show you and guide you.  This is not something you or anyone else can do in their own strength.

 

What I mean by 'it will result in a changed life'..  i mean being born again will result in a changed life.  It doesn't happen overnight though..  there is a process of growth that takes a life time..

 

Blessings..   How have you been.. I haven't seen you around. You've been on my heart alot..

~Carla

Kayla, you have misquoted scripture and I think that this is mis-coloring your understanding. You said >>"In John, it says that "anyone who doesn't obey the son will not experience eternal life..."

 

but actually in John 3:36, Jesus says "He who believes in the Son has eternal life; but he who does not obey the Son will not see life..."   It helps to look at the construction of the statement. Jesus is using traditional rabbinical logic where he says something that contrasts the previous statement, in order to give it more definition. It's like putting a dark blue border on a light blue picture, in order to enhance it. 

 

So the question is: what does it mean to believe and what does it mean to obey and what is possessing eternal life and what is not seeing life?

    If you follow through the Gospels, Jesus uses many various means to explain all of these things. Jesus is reducing his point down to the bare minimum and Jesus is speaking to the religious leaders who thought they already had a ticket to heaven.

 

Jesus is speaking to Nicodemus, but he is speaking to the entire Pharisaical community by proxy, telling these religious snobs that although they think they possess something, in fact they have missed it entirely. The think that because God has shown Israel favor and used them for his purpose of redeeming the world, that they as individuals had some exclusive possession and ...frankly they were proud of it. But God had already said "...your hearts are far from me". Jesus specifically was telling Nicodemus that he was missing something, he needed a spiritual regeneration "you must be born again" (John 3:7)

 

So, Jesus is saying that "believing in Him" is the same as "being born from above". Do we see this demonstrated as an example anywhere? Yes, the disciples underwent a tremendous transformation of life and character, being born from above and therefore believing in Jesus. Paul, experienced a total transformation of heart and mind.

 

In fact, if you follow the book of Acts, you will question if the people who were not transformed were ever actually "believers" in Jesus who were 'born again". Such examples: Anannias and Saphira or Simon the sorcerer come to mind right away. Did they think they had a "ticket to heaven" but in fact were just like the Pharisees and missed it?

 

Now consider Nicodemus, who was certainly thrown out of the Sanhedrin for standing up to be the one who took the dead body of Jesus and buried him. a) it was forbidden to touch a dead body during the Passover and b) even Jesus' disciples wouldn't make a public declaration of knowing him after the crucifixion. To admit being the associate of a criminal was guilt by association with Rome and to acknowledge being the friend of one who was "hung on a tree" was to be the friend of one who was "cursed". In this way Nicodemus demonstrated faith that came from being born again, he sacrificed his reputation and his position for the name of Christ.

 

So, you see, it's about a relationship and how that relationship guides and instructs us at a core level.

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