Dear Esther :: April 11, 2016

Dear Esther

Praise the Lord. Thank you for your encouraging words from the Word of God to believers. I think God has appointed you to strengthen believers. Thank God.

I accepted Jesus Christ as my Savior at age 16 (20 years ago, 1995). When I was in my teenage years, I did not grow up in Christ. Even though I was attending all worship meetings, Bible study and youth meetings at church, my life was not Christ-centered and I was continuously living in sin.

Two years ago, I watch one live program Who Is a Sinner? I was broken-up in my heart and I surrendered my life to Christ. God is strengthening me since then.

Now the problem is, sometimes, I am getting all sort of doubts over these past two years about God; the truthfulness of heaven and hell, whether these are true or not.

I wonder before these two years why I did not have even a single doubt like these. What I am thinking is that Satan is trying to pull me back or deceive me since I surrendered my life to Christ.

But God is speaking to me through His Word every day and I am strengthened. Even though, sometimes I am getting doubts about invisible things.

Is this spiritual warfare or am I very weak in Word of God?

Please guide me.

With Love in Christ,

Mathew, writing from India

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Dear Matthew,

Thank you for your kind words. I am glad you reached out. Everyone’s walk with the Lord is different. But not one believer is spared of ups and downs and challenges. Until the day we die or the Rapture, we will all have situations that may cause us to doubt or faith. Even if that doubt lasts for a millisecond.

We are immersed in such an enormous spiritual battle that we may get injured now and then if we are not properly equipped spiritually; and even if we are properly equipped spiritually, the enemy can create havoc and try to knock us off balance. Trials and tribulations can cause us to doubt. We all get bruised or even get off course but the awesome God we serve is merciful and never removes His hand from a believer’s life.

Now regarding your doubts, I think that is a good thing. It is a good because you are now aware of your doubts and are growing spiritually to the point of concern. I would not go back in time to try to figure out why it took this long for you to get serious about your faith.

Instead, I urge you to continue doing what you are doing now. Stay in God’s Word and whenever those little doubts enter your mind say to yourself, “I don’t accept that thought. I reject that thought.”

“So belief cometh of hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ” (Romans 10:17).

Compared to our great and mighty God, the human condition is very weak and it is only through His strength that we can navigate our way through this life. We have human weakness coupled with spiritual warfare that can contribute to “doubts.” Sometimes we are our own worst enemies and cause our own problems. Matthew, it is imperative for you to continue to stay in the Word of God.

This life is not a life of fun and games. It is serious business. Many of us have so many blessings but all over the world Christians are under brutal attack. Yet the mainstream media barely reports the murders, rapes, slavery and torture so many are enduring; especially in the name of Allah.

Even very young children are casualties of the barbaric acts of Muslim jihadists—Islamic terrorists, who work day and night to overpower innocent victims of all faiths; but the brutality against Christians is definitely under reported. These throwback savages are all demonically incited, all part of their battle to destroy this world and usher in their false savior, their Mahdi.

So we have all the more reason to realize, as believers, that we must be alert and not allow ourselves to get caught-up in day-to-day distractions and forget how serious the battle is for souls. We should always keep in the front of our minds that the enemies of God have grenades and land mines everywhere. But when we are in Christ we have the Holy Spirit to guide and empower us, so we do not become casualties of the devil’s relentless attacks.

The day-to-day distractions are very important to be aware of; they are part of the grenades and land mines the devil plants around us. With awareness we can better avoid spiritual injury. Examine yourself and see how you spend your time and who you spend your time with. In other words, examine all of your thought patterns, associations and anything that defines you.

Using smartphones and social media sites can become obsessions for some people. Even well-meaning believers can get caught-up spending too much time away from the Word of God; texting, downloading and uploading—to no end. Nothing can replace the time spent in a quiet, steady, authentic relationship with the Lord.

The technological overload everywhere is a major temptation. After all, we can share the gospel and encourage others in the Lord using our tech devises. All good motives. The danger is spending much too much time socially engaged and not enough time being personally engaged with the Lord. So we must be mindful of how we use our time and what we fill our minds with in this world of information overload constantly calling to us.

I would like to encourage you to think of a very important point, the authenticity of Jesus’ identity, which should help you let go of any doubts that might creep into your mind. In Mathew 16, Jesus asked the disciples, “But who do you say that I am?” Peter answered, “You are the Christ.” Jesus claimed to be the Son of God and equal with God which caused Jewish leaders to try to kill Him.

“For this reason therefore the Jews were seeking all the more to kill Him, because He not only was breaking the Sabbath, but also was calling God His own Father, making Himself equal with God” (John 5:18).

And consider these additional Scriptures; Jesus clearly declares His identity:

“Jesus said to them, ‘Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was born, I am’” (John 8:58).

“God said to Moses, ‘I AM WHO I AM;’ and He said, ‘Thus you shall say to the sons of Israel, I AM has sent me to you’” (Exodus 3:14).

“But He kept silent and did not answer. Again the high priest was questioning Him, and saying to Him, ‘Are You the Christ, the Son of the Blessed One?’And Jesus said, “I am; and you shall see THE SON OF MAN SITTING AT THE RIGHT HAND OF POWER, and COMING WITH THE CLOUDS OF HEAVEN” (Mark 14:61-62).

Jesus answered them, I told you, and ye believe not: the works that I do in my Father’s name, these bear witness of me. But ye believe not, because ye are not of my sheep. My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: and I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, and no one shall snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who hath given them unto me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch themout of the Father’s hand. I and the Father are one” (John 10:25-30).

Either Jesus Christ is who He claimed to be or He is a liar. And we know God cannot lie. The apostle Paul gave this salutation:

“Paul, a bond-servant of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ, for the faith of those chosen of God and the knowledge of the truth which is according to godliness, in the hope of eternal life, which God, who cannot lie, promised long ages ago, but at the proper time manifested, even His word, in the proclamation with which I was entrusted according to the commandment of God our Savior, To Titus, my true child in a common faith: Grace and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Savior” (Titus 1:1-4).

Matthew, whenever those doubts creep in, remember that the holy God of the universe, the Creator of the heavens and earth, is the One who died for you and all of humanity. This is not science fiction. We are talking about the historical documentation of Jesus Christ, who stepped out of eternity to take upon Himself all of our sins so we can be reconciled unto Him and be free of an eternity of horror.

When doubts set in, realize without Christ your eternal life would be doomed. But because of Him, you are free and will have an eternity so great it truly surpasses our understanding. Please start praising Him and thanking Him, every day.

We must be exceedingly grateful for all the blessings we have and not take anything for granted. Go forward now with an attitude of gratitude and totally surrender your all to Him.

“Oh give thanks to the LORD, for He is good, for His lovingkindness is everlasting. Let the redeemed of the LORD say so, whom He has redeemed from the hand of the adversary” (Psalm 107:1-2).

Regarding your possible doubts about heaven and hell, please do a word search on both words and you will find much to help to diminish your doubts. Both places are very real. Always keep in mind, the Bible is God’s inherent, infallible Word. When you read it, believe it. Here are just some Scriptures on heaven and hell:

“But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death” (Revelation 21:8).

For a description of the new heaven and new earth after the literal 1000-year millennial reign of Christ, read Revelation 21:1-27.

“And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment” (Hebrews 9:27).

“Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angel” (Matthew 25:41).

“And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet [are], and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever” (Revelation 20:10).

“And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal” (Matthew 25:46).

“For the wages of sin [is] death; but the gift of God [is] eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord: (Romans 6:23).

“And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, [even] the Son of man which is in heaven” (John 3:13).

In my Father’s house are many mansions: if [it were] not [so], I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you” (John 14:2).

“And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death” (Revelation 20:14).

Matthew, heaven and hell are very real. Please get deeply into God’s Word, reevaluate how you are living your life and let go of anything that takes you away from God’s Truths. Don’t wait another minute to totally surrender your life to Him.

In God’s love,

“Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one” (Ephesians 6:14-16).