Up until June 9, 2014 – I could not say I had truly accepted Jesus Christ. I wanted to. He seemed like a fine model for human behavior. I admired the ethical and moral restraints Christianity often encourages its followers to adhere to. I just didn’t see enough evidence that Jesus had even existed at all in historical records. I wanted to believe in the nice story so many others believed, (Just like Santa Claus – how wonderful it would be if it were true!) but I would have been committing intellectual suicide to do it.
As I wrote in the introduction to my recent book, Antichrist 2016-2019:
“I was spiritually immature and had no faith in God. He certainly wasn’t doing his job as I saw fit. Many good Christians tried to convince me otherwise, but I didn’t see any logic in their beliefs. All I could hear was: ‘God made a horribly flawed creation on purpose, just so he could fix it later and prove a point by magically impregnating a virgin and arriving here as his own son. The son had to be killed, but because he is his own father he can rise from the grave like a zombie. He loves us all very much, but he won’t use his omnipotence to end disease or war. In his plan to end suffering, I just need to believe in him – only then can he remove the evil that got into souls 6,000 years ago when a woman was made from a rib and was convinced by a talking snake to eat from a magic tree. Because that is the source of all the problems in God’s perfect creation.’ Seriously?”
It took decades of research and thinking to gradually accept Christian beliefs. And then rather suddenly, after over thirty years of very little change in my thinking, an acceleration of acceptance began. Everything started to come together for me. It was like the launching of a manned mission to the moon. Years of preparation gets the rocket to the launch pad, but it sits there at zero elevation until just after ignition. Then slowly at first, but quite suddenly in the grand scheme of the years of preparation, the rocket slowly rises. What had rested on the surface of the Earth for so many years, held down by gravity, finally begins to overcome those chains of gravity. A few seconds after lift off it still isn’t moving much faster than a sloth. But its speed soon passes that of a cheetah, and then a race car, and then a jet plane, and soon it is moving over 10,000 miles per hour and has escaped the gravitational restraint of the planet below. I could (and am doing it now) make an analogy to my leap of faith – as the keys to understanding the central beliefs of Christianity fell into place it got easier to understand it all faster and faster. Just like a jigsaw puzzle is hard at first but the last pieces are extremely easy to put in place.
As I wrote in a later chapter of Antichrist 2016-2019:
When I was young, I had trouble believing in God. As I matured, the concept of God the Creator eventually made sense to me, but I didn’t see why he would need to send a Son as an intermediary. As I searched and developed spiritually, I acknowledged that God is so vast, existing beyond our confines of the dimensions of time and space, that He cannot be perceived and understood by us in full. To interact with us, He would have to limit Himself, and communicate with us as a partial shadow of His complete self. The logical conclusion on such topics is that if God would communicate with us, sending His message – The Word – in human form makes sense. This allows the easiest interaction with us, and the clearest example for us. In reaching this conclusion, I was on the cusp of understanding Christianity. But I still didn’t have evidence. I could not just ignore my doubts and believe “without committing intellectual suicide.”
We humans are limited and imperfect. We know there are rules given by politicians and prophets and we justify following some and not others. Most people readily agree with “thou shalt not kill” and manage to avoid killing anyone. But as we go down the list of laws most of us pick and choose; even the best of us can easily justify all sorts of things from jaywalking to recording a football game without the express written consent of ABC Sports and National Football League. We fail to focus on what is right, and do not even consistently follow those few rules we agree are reasonable. We make mistakes. We cheat. We harm each other. We demonstrate that humans are incapable of following all the laws given to Moses. Our sins disgrace ourselves and our creator.
And from the perspective of the rest of the universe, it’s a good thing that we humans have very little power, limited by a short span of time in which we briefly exist in just three dimensions. We are but flawed shadows of the heavenly realm of God, who exists in more spatial dimensions than we can comprehend. He also exists outside and beyond our confines of time, for past, present, and future are all one whole to Him, knowing the end from the beginning.
There is nothing we mortals can do to merit ascending to an eternal, multidimensional existence with God. It is normal, because of our limited existence in linear time, to attach too great an importance on “good works,” as our lives revolve around cause and effect. But Romans 9:11 clarifies that God’s decision to offer us salvation was made before we even existed, when we were “not yet born and had not done anything good or bad, so that God’s purpose according to His choice would stand, not because of works but because of Him who calls.” Good works will be one result of understanding God’s offer of salvation, but works are not to be considered a required down payment. We are incapable of purchasing our own redemption through good behavior or good works because we could never be perfect enough to enter heaven on our own merit.
We humans have a tendency to dislike this lack of complete control. God is beyond our limitations of time and space, making incomprehensible decisions about us before we are born. The whole process reeks of predestination, and many believe that if God knows the end from the beginning then free will is just an illusion. I argue that we do have free will, and that God’s knowledge is somewhat like our knowledge of history. My knowing what Napoleon did in the past does not mean that he lacked free will and that the only decisions available to him were the ones I know as established facts. My position in time merely locks in the choices which Napoleon (and everyone else in my past) already made. I did not control Napoleon or take away his free will through reading about him. And I would argue that God’s ability to transcend time and know our future as we know the past also does not rule out our free will. But for those of us bound by cause and effect within linear time, the concept of God knowing the results of our choices before we are born without limiting those choices is not simple to grasp.
It doesn’t seem fair that we were created with confusion and imperfections and limitations, when so much more is possible. Perhaps this is why God invites us to experience heaven, so long as we understand and accept his grace and authority. That is Christianity. Accepting our limitations, asking for forgiveness for our behavior, asking not to be judged worthy of more based on our own actions but understanding that we can be offered more through unmerited grace, and acknowledging that entry into the perfection of heaven is conditional upon accepting God’s rules and authority.
Accepting that God sent His instructional message of salvation in the human form of His Son Jesus Christ was intellectually impossible for me as a young man; but as I searched and matured I finally see that this is the most logical way God would communicate this message to us. He sent a divine message in human form to the only nation of monotheists who believed in a single God at a point in history when they were anticipating a messiah who would save them from persecution. He made sure His message was understood and accepted by at least a few people who would then spread it around the world.
Why does God even care? We are an imperfect stain on His creation, and Christianity teaches us that before we are even born we are judged to be inherently unworthy of heavenly immortality because of the limitations and imperfections that come with being human. To God, we are like the bacteria of an infection in our human bodies. But if I believe that all life has meaning, and that somehow I could communicate with lower forms of life – I would send the bacteria in my infection a message. I would inform them that their actions are self-serving in the short run and fatal in the long run. Because they only exist in MY body, and if I judge their existence to be counterproductive, I will treat them like a problem to be eliminated. There will be a great and final disinfection. Their only chance of survival is to accept my rules of operation and fall in line. Bacteria that work with our bodies are welcome additions. Many bacteria help our cells process sugars and perform other useful functions. They become a part of us, and have been passed down from mother to child.
I believe that all of us, the entire universe, are a part of the body of God. I believe God chose to send us a message, and that it made sense not to just send a magic book but to come in the form of an interactive human messenger. I believe He embodied the Logos, the divine Word, in a human version of Himself. I believe that man was Jesus Christ. I believe He suffered to descend to this form of existence to offer us salvation – a way to escape the normally inevitable death sentence which results from our limitations and imperfections in human form. I acknowledge Jesus Christ as my Lord, as He is a form of God and I must follow His rules to be granted full acceptance in His creation. I acknowledge Christ as my Savior, as we can never achieve perfection or merit entry into heaven without divine grace – which is what Christ was sent to offer us if we will only acknowledge and accept these basic ideas.
I feel excited and energized to finally understand and accept Christianity in my mind and in my heart. But my understanding and belief does carry a price – any wants and desires I had before, which are not consistent with God – they have to go. In accepting Christ as my Lord, I acknowledge there is no longer “my way” just “His way.” My past sins and imperfections are forgiven, but I must be “born again” and live for God and His Message, which came in the form of Jesus Christ. If we truly accept God’s authority, and know we are saved, we will behave accordingly. Once we truly accept God’s rules, we are not judged again. We were judged and sentenced already. If we truly believe, we accept God’s authority and grace and we are eternally pardoned – we are saved from ourselves.
After decades of searching, the basic message of Christianity is the conclusion I feel I have finally and logically reached. I had always thought that the gospels taught to avoid trying to reach faith through logic. Luke 18:17 says “whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child will not enter it at all” – and many well-intentioned Christians have tried to get me to “stop overthinking it.” But I now see that the request to come as a child does not mean to avoid logic or to be ignorant and accept anything blindly or without understanding – coming as a child just means to have unquestioning faith and trust in my heavenly Father, like I had in my human father when I was a child. For me to have faith, I needed understanding. I have finally grasped what is described in 2 Timothy 3:15 – “the wisdom that leads to salvation through faith.” It may not be the path most people take to get here. But this is the path that worked for me.
Although it may not matter, I know the exact moment I finally felt and understood this. I was reading a book on “simple steps to salvation” (which I did not assume would help accomplish anything when I started reading it) when I “got it” – and looked up at the clock to note the time, and started writing down my thoughts. Normally I wouldn’t recommend paying much attention to someone who sounds like they were born yesterday… but I was just born again yesterday, at 9:11 PM EST, Monday June 9, 2014.
Is it my duty as a Christian to push my beliefs on others? I don’t think it is, especially when I spent a lifetime in doubt and have only very recently accepted the message of Christ. But I did title this little chapter “Accepting God’s Plans.” I believe the evidence points to horrific events coming soon. I believe your faith in God and His plans will be very important soon. So I would be negligent if I did not at least suggest to any readers who lack faith – think long and hard about what you believe. If I am wrong in my conclusions on timing, perhaps there is no rush. But if I am right, there is very little time left to clarify your beliefs. Some of you, right now, are having trouble judging God. I believe that no later than December 28, 2019 – God will be judging us. If you haven’t found God yet, keep searching. I don’t think He is hiding from us. Once our minds are open to the idea that there is a power greater than ourselves and we have “eyes to see,” finding God is even easier than spotting the red and white striped shirt in “Where’s Waldo?” Evidence of God is all around us. I think He is patiently waiting, hoping you will “find” Him while there is still time.
Romans 12:2 “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.”
— by David Montaigne, author of
End Times and 2019 and Antichrist 2016-2019: Mystery Babylon, Barack Obama & the Islamic Caliphate