WHAT A FUTURE! IMAGINE NEVER DYING
By Ada Brownell
By Ada Brownell
Who do you say I am?” Jesus asked Peter at Philippi.
“You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God,” Peter answered.
“You are blessed, Simon, son of John,” Jesus told him, "Because my Father in heaven has revealed this to you. You did not learn this from any human being.”
Jesus claimed to be God at other times in his ministry. When Jesus told the Jews that if they kept His sayings, they would not see death, they were outraged. (He spoke of our souls and spirits living forever.)
“Now we know you are possessed by a demon,” they said. “Even Abraham and the prophets died, but you say that those who obey your teaching will never die? Are you greater than our father Abraham, who died? Are you greater than the prophets, who died? Who do you think you are?”
Jesus answered, “If I am merely boasting about myself, it doesn’t count. But it is my Father who says these glorious things about me. You say, ‘He is our God,’ but you do not even know him. I know him. If I said otherwise, I would be as great a liar as you! But it is true—I know him and obey him. Your ancestor Abraham rejoiced as he looked forward to my coming. He saw it, and was glad.”
“You aren’t even fifty years old. How can you say you’ve seen Abraham?” the Jews asked.
Jesus answered, “The truth is, I existed before Abraham was even born!”
Then they took up stones to throw at him.
Later, at his trial, Jesus acknowledged his divinity.
“Art thou the Christ, the Son of the Blessed?”
“I am,” Jesus said.
Jesus showed his claim to being the Messiah and His divinity in other ways also. In the entire Bible, Jesus is the only person who accepted worship from others.
Jesus made other indirect claims to his divinity. He forgave sins. He said He was the Giver of Life. Judgment has been assigned to him by the Father, according to the teachings of Jesus.
The claims made by Jesus were substantiated by others. John the Baptist proclaimed Him to be the Messiah. Peter confirmed that he believed Jesus to be the Son of God. Stephen preached that Jesus was the Messiah and testified he saw Jesus sitting at the right hand of God. Stephen prayed, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit!” as he lay dying after he was stoned.
The apostle Paul (previously called Saul) was one of the Jews who stirred up the people who killed Stephen. But soon Paul also became a believer and proclaimed Jesus as the Son of God. Paul was imprisoned and given the death penalty because of his faith in Jesus Christ.
IMAGINE DEMONS TREMBLING
Demons even acknowledge knowing Jesus, and they tremble.
To the Jews He proclaimed that He would rise from the dead if they destroyed Him. He also taught His disciples in private that He would be killed and after three days rise again. The disciples would not listen to such teachings, though.
After Jesus died and buried in the tomb of Joseph of Arimathea, the chief priests and Pharisees asked Pilate to guard and seal the tomb. They said, “We remember that deceiver said, while he was yet alive, ‘After three days I will rise again.’”
Despite the guards and the seal, the Lord Jesus Christ did walk out of that tomb, alive forevermore.
Yet, Easter still is a mystery. From a purely physical point of view, if there was no Resurrection, what happened to Christ’s body? And if he didn’t come out of the grave triumphant, why would the disciples, who were so wishy-washy before his death, suddenly become strong enough to give their lives for their faith in Jesus?
Josh McDowell, author of Evidence that Demands a Verdict, wrote great in-depth studies on the Resurrection and other historical evidences for the Christian faith. He said people will die for a religious leader they think is equal to God, but if Jesus had not risen from the dead his disciples would have known it, and people will not give their lives for belief in a person they know is a fraud.
According to the Bible, history, and tradition, all of the twelve disciples of Jesus except Saint John and Judas were martyrs. John died a natural death while imprisoned on Patmos, where he wrote the Book of Revelation. Judas, who sold Jesus for 30 pieces of silver, committed suicide.Jesus’s resurrection is an amazing fact. But so is the wonder of life’s origins
 Matthew 16:16–17
 John 8:51–58
 Mark 14:61–62
 Matthew 8:29; James 2:18–20
 John 2:18–22
 Matthew 16:21
 Matthew 27:63
 Josh McDowell, Campus Crusade for Christ, Here’s Life Publishers, Inc., 1979
IMAGINE THE FUTURE YOU EXCERPT
By Ada Brownell
Imagine the Real You Never Dying
The intriguing thing about our dreams is we’re always the “Star.” Comedy, romance, murder mystery, drama, documentary of a heroine—there we are in the middle of everything.
When we’re awake we also star in our dreams. Dream big and work toward your goals and you’ll write a story with your life that might amaze you.
Whether your story is a tragedy or a cherished classic depends on who you want to become and if you pursue your dreams.
If you continue to do or not do what you practice now, what kind of future do you imagine for yourself?
The decisions we make ourselves affect our future more than those made for us. We have control of our attitudes, work ethic, sense of wonder, faith to believe in God and for great things. It is up to us where we end up in life and eternity.
This Bible study will help you discover evidence for faith; how to look and be your best; who can help; interesting information about dating, love and marriage; choosing a career; how to deposit good things into your brain you can spend; and how to avoid hazards that jeopardize a successful life on earth and for eternity, all mingled with true stories that can make you smile.
Unexpected bonuses include facts about science and faith, and information about sexually transmitted diseases.
Review: How I would have loved to sit at Mrs. Brownell's knee when I was a teen. This wholesome book resounds with sage, Godly advice and could be picked up again and again as needs arise. Worthwhile for parents too. Much fodder for family discussion!