This past week I had two dreams:
In the first dream it was Sunday morning and I was told that I’m expected to preach. Unknowing what to preach on, I felt compelled to preach on John 3. Then I woke up. When I woke up in the morning, I read John 3.
John 3:16, of course, is a well known verse:
For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
What I find to be less known is John 3:19-20, which reads:
This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but people loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil. Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that their deeds will be exposed.
Two nights later, I have another dream. In this dream I’m placed in a room full of women and the topic is on boundaries. Again, surprised and unprepared, I do a quick scramble of my brain on what to share and Deuteronomy 4 comes to mind. (I don’t know why I had a Samsung flip phone in the dream, but I digress).
The NIV Bible has headings to let you know the topic of the following text. When I open up my Bible the following morning, in bold lettering says, “Obedience Commanded.” The whole chapter is about the new generation of Israelites who will enter the Promised Land and Moses is rewriting, or retelling them, the Laws that God gave to the first generation who crossed the Red Sea.
Now, about half of a week later, some things start clueing into me. First thing, I don’t like saying, “God told me this…” God said to the Old Testament prophets that their are false prophets proclaim, “The LORD said, the LORD said,” when in fact God said nothing. So I don’t like to say, “God told me,” but I will say that clarity has come to my mind.
We live in this time where Christianity is more based on a “supernatural” experience. People want to speak in tongues, prophecy, heal the sick, but they don’t want the Word of God. Don’t get me wrong, they’ll take the Word of God to fit their needs, but nothing to confront them of their sins, their pride, their disobedience.
And I feel like I’ve been left out of the Holy Spirit. And, as scripture says, that only by the Holy Spirit can one be saved.
And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies because of his Spirit who lives in you. (Romans 8:11)
(People will take other scripture to disagree with this one that’s why I felt the need to add the verse I’m referring to.)
Now, to explain, these two dreams do connect. As commonly preached, “We are saved by grace through faith,” by the death and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ. We have taken that and ran with it, but we must be willing to repent, to turn away from our sins, and back to God. That’s why Jesus came: Not only that we have eternal life, but that we have fellowship with God the Father. As John 17 says, “Now this is eternal life: that they (we) may know you, the one true God…”
That’s dream #1: Now that we have an everlasting sacrificial lamb to atone for our sins, we can now approach a holy God in prayers. And if we want to get to know him, the one true God, we must know the law, which Apostle Paul says is “holy, righteous and good” in Romans 7:12.
And this is where, I believe, the Holy Spirit helps us. So often growing up, I was taught the cruel foolishness of the law (“Thank God we’re not under the law”). But the fact is that God gave a harsh law to make a holy people. And today, the Holy Spirit can help guide us threw the laws that are still relevant and their meaning against certain laws that are ceremonial and cultural (such as foods and clothing).
The reason why I titled this blog “What Now!” is because we often go to church or a conference and “Get saved”, but then what? How do I go about living my life? Do I go back to the same movies and TV, pornography, swearing, etc? Or do I start seeking out a holy God and surrender and trust him?
I fear that pastors now-a-day are seeking a people filled church, but lack a God filled church. So, my friend, it’s up to you to seek God for yourself. Remember, he loves you and wants you to know him and be saved.