Am I Forgiven?

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lamesa
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Am I Forgiven?

#1 Post by lamesa » 1 month ago

[The following is a letter that I mailed to a JW who is dying of cancer. I do not know her, but last year I received a generic witnessing letter (about fear, sickness, pandemic) from her and then I responded with a message of hope from the Bible. A few months later, she responded and said she liked my “encouraging” letter, also she has learned that she has advanced cancer. She became a JW as an adult and now she seems to be afraid of dying. (All personal information was removed.) P.S. I used the NWT because it’s the only Bible that she believes in.]

Am I Forgiven?

“Your sins have been forgiven you.” —1 John 2:12.

1. Why do I need forgiveness?

All need forgiveness, because all are sinners.

“For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).

We are all great sinners. We were born sinners and we have been sinners all our lives. It’s our nature to sin. No child needs schooling to learn to do wrong.

“Look! I was born guilty of error, and my mother conceived me in sin” (Psalm 51:5).

“Who can produce someone clean from someone unclean? No one can!” (Job 14:4).

Because we all sin, we all die.

“For the wages sin pays is death” (Romans 6:23).

So, we must either be forgiven, or lost eternally.

We are all guilty sinners in the sight of God. We have broken His holy law. We have transgressed his precepts. We have not done his will. There is not one commandment in all the ten which does not condemn us. If we have not broken it deed, we have in word, we have in thought and imagination,—constantly. Tried by the standard of the Sermon on the Mount, there is not one of us who would be acquitted.

“And just as it is reserved for men to die once for all time, but after this to receive a judgment” (Hebrews 9:27).

We must be either forgiven, or perish everlastingly.

There is not a soul among us all who is not guilty before God. Everyone’s hearts are everywhere the same, and everywhere wicked. Sin is the family disease of all the children of Adam.

“Just as through one man sin entered into the world and death through sin, and so death spread to all men because they had all sinned (Romans 5:12).

The eye of Jehovah looks down on this globe and sees it covered with corruption and wickedness.

“Jehovah looks down from heaven on the sons of men, to see whether anyone has insight, whether anyone is seeking Jehovah. They have all turned aside; They are all alike corrupt. No one is doing good, Not even one.” (Psalm 14:2, 3).

Most people do not like hear this. But mark what I am about to say next, and then consider whether I have not used the words of truth.

If we were to look at the life of the best Christian among us, what would we find? But a life of short-comings, ‘leaving undone things that we ought to do, and doing things that we ought not to do.’ Our faith is so feeble! Our love, how cold! Our works, how few! Our zeal, how small! Our patience, how short! Our humility, how threadbare! Our self-denial how meager! Our knowledge, how dim! Our spirituality, how shallow! Our prayers, how formal! Our desires for more grace, how faint! Never did the wisest of men speak more wisely than when he said:

“There is no righteous man on earth who always does good and never sins” (Ecclesiastes 7:20).

“For we all stumble many times. If anyone does not stumble in word, he is a perfect man, able to bridle also his whole body” (James 3:2).

And what is the best action ever done by the very best Christians? What is it after all, but an imperfect work when tried on its own merits? It is always more or less defective. It is either wrong in its motive, or incomplete in its performance—not done from perfect principles, or not executed in a perfect way. The eyes of men may see no fault in it, but weighed in the balance of God, it would be found wanting, and viewed in his sight, it would prove full of flaws. It is like the drop of water which seems clear to the naked eye, but placed under a microscope is discovered to be full of impurity. David’s words are literally true:

“They are all alike corrupt. No one is doing good, not even one.” (Psalm 14:3).

And then compare the holiness of Jehovah God, whose eyes are on all our ways, and before whom we have one day to give account. “Holy, Holy, Holy,” is applied to him by those who are nearest to him (Isaiah 6:3. Revelation 4:8). One of his prophets said:

“Your eyes are too pure to look on what is evil, and you cannot tolerate wickedness” (Habakkuk 1:13).

What are we but miserable sinners in the sight of a holy God?

Surely we ought all to cease from proud thoughts about ourselves. We ought to lay our hands upon our mouths, and say with Abraham, “I am dust and ashes” (Genesis 18:27), and with Job, “I am unworthy” (Job 40:4), and with Isaiah, “we have all become like someone unclean, and all our acts of righteousness are like a menstrual cloth” (Isaiah 64:6), and with John, “If we make the statement, ‘We have no sin,’ we are misleading ourselves and the truth is not in us” (1 John 1:8). Where is the man or woman in the whole catalogue of the Book of Life (Revelation 3:5; 20:12) that will ever be able to say more than, ‘I obtained mercy and undeserved kindness’?

“It is as a free gift that they are being declared righteous by his undeserved kindness through the release by the ransom paid by Christ Jesus”
(Romans 3:24).


What are the apostles, the prophets, the faithful martyrs—but pardoned sinners? Surely there is but one conclusion, we are all great sinners, and we all need great forgiveness.

To know our need of forgiveness, is the first thing in Christianity. Sin is a burden (2 Timothy 3:6), and must be taken off. Sin is a defilement, and must be cleansed away. Sin is a mighty debt, and must be paid. Sin is a mountain standing between us and God, and must be removed.

“Your own errors have separated you from your God. Your sins have made him hide his face from you” (Isaiah 59:2).


Happy is the soul that feels all this! The first step toward God is to see clearly that we deserve death.

There are but two alternatives before us, we must either be forgiven, or perish forever.

How few understand Christianity. They go to church to learn their duty, and hear morality enforced, and for no other purpose. Some pagans put to shame the Christian liar, the Christian drunkard, and the Christian thief.

The mark of Christianity is the remedy it provides for sin. This is the glory and excellence of the Gospel. It meets a person as they truly are, and offers a remedy
equal to their disease—great forgiveness for great sinners. Oh! that we might learn to pray Job’s prayer:

“Make me to know my transgression and my sin” (Job 13:23).

Oh! that we might see this great truth:

Until you are forgiven, your Christianity has done nothing for you at all.

2. How may I be forgiven?

Nothing can be more important. If we want pardon and forgiveness, what must we do? Where will we go? Everything hinges on the answer you give to this question.
Will you turn to ministers, and put your trust in them? They cannot give you pardon, they can only tell you where it is to be found. They can set before you “the bread of life” (John 6:35), but you must eat it.

“Jesus said to them: ‘I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will not get hungry at all, and whoever exercises faith in me will never get thirsty at all.’” (John 6:35).

Others can show you the “way of peace” (Romans 3:17), but you must walk in it.

Will you trust in your own works and endeavors, your virtues and your good deeds, your prayers and your alms? They will never buy your forgiveness. They will never pay your debt to God. They are all imperfect in themselves, and only increase your guilt. There is no merit or worthiness in them at the very best.

“When you have done all the things assigned to you, say: ‘We are good-for-nothing slaves. What we have done is what we ought to have done’” (Luke 17:10).

Will you trust in your own repentance? You are very sorry for the past. You hope to be better for the time to come. You hope God will be merciful. Alas! if you lean on this, you have nothing beneath you but a broken reed. The judge does not pardon the thief because he is sorry for what he did. Today’s sorrow will not wipe off the score of yesterday’s sins. It is not an ocean of tears that would ever cleanse an uneasy conscience and give it peace.

Where then must we go for pardon? Where is forgiveness to be found? There is a way both sure and plain:

“To him all the prophets bear witness, a that everyone putting faith in him [Jesus] receives forgiveness of sins through his name” (Acts 10:43).

“Through this one [Jesus] forgiveness of sins is being proclaimed to you” (Acts 13:38).

Jesus said: “Just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so the Son of man must be lifted up, so that everyone believing [Greek: pisteuó] in him may have everlasting life” (John 3:14, 15).

That way is, simply to trust in Jesus Christ. It is to cast your soul, with all your sins, unreservedly on Christ, to cease completely from any dependence on your own works and doings, either in whole or in part, and to rest on no other work but Christ’s work, no other righteousness but Christ’s righteousness, no other merit but Christ’s merit, as your ground of hope.

“He [God] rescued us from the authority of the darkness and transferred us into the kingdom of his beloved Son, by means of whom we have our release by
ransom, the forgiveness of our sins” (Col. 1:13, 14).


By his own death, the Lord Jesus Christ, in great love and compassion, has made a full and complete satisfaction for sin. He offered himself as a sacrifice for us, and allowed the wrath of God, which we deserved, to fall on his own head. For our sins he gave himself, suffered, and died, the just for the unjust, the innocent for the guilty, that he might deliver us from the curse of a broken law, and provide a complete pardon for all who are willing to receive it. And by so doing, as Isaiah says, he was wounded for our sins (Isaiah 53:5), as John the Baptist says, he has taken away sin (John 1:29), as the apostle Paul says, he has purged our sins and put away sin (Hebrews 1:3), and as Daniel says:

Jesus gave himself “to terminate the transgression, to finish off sin, to make atonement for error, to bring in everlasting righteousness” (Daniel 9:24).

And now the Lord Jesus is sealed and appointed by God the Father to be a “Prince and a Savior,” to give remission of sins to all who will have it:

“ God exalted this one as Chief Agent and Savior to his right hand,to give repentance to Israel and forgiveness of sins” (Acts 5:31).

The keys of death and Hades are put in his hand. The government of the gate of heaven is laid on his shoulder:

“I became dead, but look! I am living forever and ever, and I have the keys of death and of the Grave [Greek: Hades]” (Rev. 1:18).

“And the rulership will rest on his shoulder. His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace” (Isaiah 9:6).

He himself is the door, and by him all that enter in shall be saved:

“I am the door; whoever enters through me will be saved” (John 10:9).

Christ has purchased a full forgiveness, if you and I are willing to receive it. He has done all, paid all, suffered all that was needful to reconcile us to God. He has provided a garment of righteousness to clothe us. He has opened a fountain of living waters to cleanse us:

“Whoever drinks from the water that I will give him will never get thirsty at all, but the water that I will give him will become in him a spring of water bubbling up to impart everlasting life” (John 4:14).

Jesus has removed every barrier between us and Jehovah God the Father, taken every obstacle out of the way, and made a road by which the vilest may return.

“By means of him we have the release by ransom through the blood of that one, yes, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his undeserved kindness” (Ephesians 1:7).

And faith, simple faith, is the only thing required, in order that you and I may be forgiven. If we will come to Jesus as sinners with our sins, trust in him, rest on him, lean on him, confide in him, commit our souls to him, and forsaking all other hope, cleave only to him—this is all and everything that God asks. Our sins may be completely pardoned and entirely taken away.

“Or do you despise the riches of his kindness and forbearance and patience, because you do not know that God in his kindness is trying to lead you
to repentance?” (Romans 2:4).


Every man and woman that so trusts is wholly forgiven, and reckoned perfectly righteous. His sins are clean gone, and his soul is justified in God’s sight, however bad and guilty he may have been.

“That is what some of you were. But you have been washed clean; you have been sanctified; you have been declared righteous in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and with the spirit of our God” (1 Corinthians 6:11).

Faith is the only thing required, not knowledge. A person may be a poor unlearned sinner, and know little of books. But to know Christ is the cornerstone of all knowledge:

“Jesus said to him: ‘I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me’” (John 14:6).


Faith, I say, and not conversion. A person may have been walking in the broad way up to the very hour he first hears the Gospel. But if in that hearing he is awakened to feel his danger, and wants to be saved, let him come to Christ at once and wait for nothing. That very coming is the beginning of conversion.
Faith, I repeat, and not holiness. A person may feel all full of sin, and unworthy to be saved. But let him not tarry outside the ark until he is better. Let him come to Christ without delay, just as he is. Afterwards he will be holy.

Many have confused ideas as to what faith is. They hear that saving faith will work by love and produce holiness, and not finding all this at once in themselves, they think they have no faith at all. They forget that these things are the fruits of faith, and not faith itself, and that to doubt whether we have faith because we do not see them at once, is like doubting whether a tree is alive, because it does not bear fruit the very day we plant it in the ground. I charge you to settle it firmly in your mind that in the matter of your forgiveness and justification there is but one thing required, and that is simple faith in Christ.

“But a physical man does not accept the things of the spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; and he cannot get to know them, because they are examined spiritually” (1 Corinthians 2:14).

The natural heart dislikes this teaching. It runs counter to man’s ideas. It leaves him no room to boast. Man’s idea is to come to Christ with a price in his hand, his regularity, his morality, his repentance, his goodness, in order to buy pardon and justification. The Bible’s teaching is quite different—it is, first of all to believe [Greek: pisteuó]:

“If I have told you earthly things and you still do not believe [Greek: pisteuó], how will you believe [Greek: pisteuó] if I tell you heavenly things?” (John 3:12)

“Everyone believing [Greek: pisteuó] in him may have everlasting life” (John 3:15).

“Everyone exercising faith [Greek: pisteuó] in him might not be destroyed but have everlasting life” (John 3:16)

“Whoever exercises faith [Greek: pisteuó] in him is not to be judged. Whoever does not exercise faith3 has been judged already, because he has not exercised faith3 in the name of the only-begotten Son of God” (John 3:18).

“Jesus said to her: ‘Believe [Greek: pisteuó] me, woman’” (John 4:21).

“But Jesus said to him: “Unless you people see signs and wonders, you will never believe [Greek: pisteuó]’” (John 4:48).

“So he and his whole household believed [Greek: pisteuó]” (John 4:53).

“Most truly I say to you, whoever hears my word and believes [Greek: pisteuó] the One who sent me has everlasting life, and he does not come into judgment but has passed over from death to life” (John 5:24).


Some say, such teaching cannot be right, because it makes the way to salvation too easy. But the fact is that many persons find this too hard. It’s easier to give donations, or do many good works, than to thoroughly receive justification by faith without the deeds of the law, and to receive forgiveness as a sinner saved by grace.

Some say this teaching is foolishness. But the fact is, this is the only teaching that will ever bring peace to an uneasy conscience, and rest to a troubled soul. A person may get on pretty well without it as long as he is asleep about his spiritual condition.

I am not ashamed of free pardon through faith in Christ, whatever some may say against the teaching. Jesus, and faith in him, is the only way to the Father. Whoever thinks he can get into paradise by some other road, will find himself fearfully mistaken. There is no other foundation but faith in Christ.

“This is his commandment: that we have faith [Greek: pisteuó] in the name of his Son Jesus Christ and love one another, just as he gave us a commandment” (1 John 3:23).


Jesus said: “Most truly I say to you, whoever hears my word and believes [Greek: pisteuó] the One who sent me has everlasting life, and he does not come into judgment but has passed over from death to life” (John 5:24).

“Jesus answered them: ‘I told you, and yet you do not believe [Greek: pisteuó]. The works that I am doing in my Father’s name, these bear witness about me. But you do not believe,4 because you are not my sheep. My sheep listen to my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. I give them everlasting life, and they will by no means ever be destroyed, and no one will snatch them out of my hand’” (John 10:25-28).

Here is the way of life:

“Jesus said to him: ‘I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me’ (John 14:6).

3. Encouragement for those who wish to be forgiven.

I will try to show the treasures of Gospel forgiveness. Its riches are unsearchable:

“The unfathomable riches of the Christ” (Ephesians 3:8).

If you will turn away from Gospel forgiveness, then you will not be able to say in the “Judgment Day” (Matthew 10:15; 11:22) that you did not know what it was.

“I saw a great white throne... And I saw the dead, the great and the small, standing before the throne, and scrolls were opened. But another scroll was opened; it is the scroll of life. The dead were judged out of those things written in the scrolls according to their deeds” (Revelation 20:11, 12).

Consider then, the forgiveness set before you is a great forgiveness. Hear what the Prince of Peace himself declares:

“Though your sins are like scarlet, they will be made as white as snow; though they are as red as crimson cloth, they will become like wool” (Isaiah 1:18).

“Truly I say to you that all things will be forgiven the sons of men, no matter what sins they commit and what blasphemies they speak” (Mark 3:28).


Yes! though your trespasses be more in number than the hairs of your head, the stars in heaven, the leaves of the forest, the blades of grass, the grains of sand on the sea shore, they can all be pardoned. As the waters of Noah’s flood covered over and hid the tops of the highest hills, so can the blood of Jesus cover over and hide your mightiest sins:

“The blood of Jesus, his Son, cleanses us from all sin” (1 John 1:7).

All of your sins can be removed from the book of God’s remembrance by the precious blood of Jesus Christ.

“And yet that is what some of you were. But you have been washed clean; you have been sanctified; you have been declared righteous in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and with the spirit of our God” (1 Corinthians 6:11).


It is a full and complete forgiveness. It is a pardon so complete, that it as if you had never sinned at all. Your iniquities are blotted out. They are removed from him as far as the east from the west:

“As far off as the sunrise is from the sunset, so far off from us he has put our transgressions” (Psalm 103:12).

There remains no condemnation. Thousands and tens of thousands have sought for pardon at the mercy seat of Christ, and not one has ever returned to say that he sought in vain. Zacchaeus the extortioner, Magdalen the harlot, Saul the persecutor, Peter the denier of his Lord, the Jews who crucified the Prince of life, the idolatrous Athenians, the adulterous Corinthians, have ventured their souls on Christ’s promises of pardon, and none have ever found them fail. It is an old path. It is a path worn by the feet of many pilgrims, and a path in which the footsteps are all one way. The treasury of Christ’s mercies has never been found empty. The well of living waters has never proved dry.

Besides this, it is a present forgiveness. All that believe in Jesus are at once justified from all things.

“Let it therefore be known to you, brothers, that through this one a forgiveness of sins is being proclaimed to you” (Acts 13:38).

The very same day the younger son returned to his father’s house, he was clothed with the best robe, had the ring put on his hand and the shoes on his feet.

“Then the son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy of being called your son.’ But the father said to his slaves, ‘Quick! bring out a robe, the best one, and clothe him with it, and put a ring on his hand and sandals on his feet. Also bring the fattened calf, slaughter it, and let us eat and celebrate for this son of mine was dead but has come to life again; he was lost and has been found’” (Luke 15:21-24).

The same day Zacchaeus received Jesus he heard those comfortable words, “Today salvation has come to this house.”

“Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house... For the Son of Man came to seek and to save what was lost” (Luke 19:8, 9).

The very same day that David said, “I have sinned against Jehovah,” he was told by Nathan, “Jehovah also has put away your sin.” (2 Sam. 12:13.)

The very same day you first flee to Christ, your sins are all removed. Your pardon is not a thing far away, to be obtained only after many years. It is near at hand. It is close to you, within your reach, all ready to be bestowed. Believe, and that very moment it is your own.

“Most truly I say to you, whoever hears my word and believes the One who sent me has everlasting life, and he does not come into judgment but has passed over from death to life” (John 5:24).

Jesus did not say, “will pass over from death to life,” but “has passed over from death to life.” From the time of your believing condemnation is gone.
You must not think forgiveness will be nearer to a believer in the day of judgment than it was in the hour you first believed. While your complete salvation from the power of sin is every year nearer and nearer; but your forgiveness and justification, it is a finished work from the very minute you first commit yourself to Christ.

I have set before you the nature of the forgiveness offered to you. I have told you but a little of it, for my words are weak. The half of it remains untold. The greatness of it is far more than any report of mine. But I think I have said enough to show you it is worth the seeking, and I can wish you nothing better than that you may strive to make it your own.

Let us walk in the full light of the “sun of righteousness” and then our faith will grow.

“But on you who honor my name, the sun of righteousness will shine, with healing in its rays; and you will skip about like fattened calves” (Malachi 4:2).

Let us strive to be like the sunflower, and follow the great fountain of light wherever he goes.

“Now to the one who is able to guard you from stumbling and to make you stand unblemished in the sight of his glory with great joy, to the only God our Savior through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, might, and authority for all past eternity and now and into all eternity. Amen” (Jude 24).
“My sheep listen to my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. I give them everlasting life, and they will by no means ever be destroyed, and no one will snatch them out of my hand” (John 10:27 28).


And now, with every kind and Christian wish for your soul’s happiness,
your affectionate friend,

User avatar
FriendlyDoggo
Posts: 293
Joined: 10 months ago

Re: Am I Forgiven?

#2 Post by FriendlyDoggo » 1 month ago

That's a really beautiful message lamesa! Thank you.

Acts 16:31
My english isn't very good, sorry any inconvenience.

Sage Hill
Posts: 14
Joined: 2 months ago

Re: Am I Forgiven?

#3 Post by Sage Hill » 1 month ago

Thank you for sharing that! I don't know how it was received by the sister you sent it to, but just know that it was exactly what I needed to hear today. So whether she read it and appreciated it or not, it accomplished its purpose.

lamesa
Posts: 64
Joined: 1 month ago

Re: Am I Forgiven?

#4 Post by lamesa » 1 month ago

I'm so glad you were blessed by this message, I get excited every time I read it! Below is a link to a printable version, if you wish to share it with others:

https://www.dropbox.com/s/3qdl9i2cvwi8z ... n.pdf?dl=0

My letter is a very heavily modified version of a longer tract by J.C. Ryle (1816-1900) entitled, "Are You Forgiven?" I highly recommend Ryle's expository commentaries, they are available at YouTube for free:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B3n3bP2glWo

P.S. I left out attribution to J.C. Ryle because a JW wouldn't read it if they saw that. I plan to create another version using the New King James, and include attribution to Ryle. I'll post a link here, when it's done. :)

lamesa
Posts: 64
Joined: 1 month ago

Re: Am I Forgiven?

#5 Post by lamesa » 1 month ago

Here is a link to the same article, but using the New King James Bible:
https://www.dropbox.com/s/wsp5y5r63fbo3 ... J.pdf?dl=0

Sage Hill
Posts: 14
Joined: 2 months ago

Re: Am I Forgiven?

#6 Post by Sage Hill » 1 month ago

lamesa wrote: 1 month ago I'm so glad you were blessed by this message, I get excited every time I read it! Below is a link to a printable version, if you wish to share it with others:

https://www.dropbox.com/s/3qdl9i2cvwi8z ... n.pdf?dl=0

My letter is a very heavily modified version of a longer tract by J.C. Ryle (1816-1900) entitled, "Are You Forgiven?" I highly recommend Ryle's expository commentaries, they are available at YouTube for free:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B3n3bP2glWo

P.S. I left out attribution to J.C. Ryle because a JW wouldn't read it if they saw that. I plan to create another version using the New King James, and include attribution to Ryle. I'll post a link here, when it's done. :)
Yes, the language seemed a little out of time and place. It's really beautiful and I will check out his other work. I might go ahead and print it out. It's nice to have encouragement right at hand. Thank you again!

Get out of her
Posts: 1185
Joined: 5 years ago

Re: Am I Forgiven?

#7 Post by Get out of her » 3 weeks ago

lamesa wrote:
Am I Forgiven?

“Your sins have been forgiven you.” —1 John 2:12.

“For the wages sin pays is death” (Romans 6:23).

When comparing scriptures like this side by side, do they not seem somewhat contradictory, and particularly since ALL humans (including repentant ones) have continued to die even since the priestly atonement for sin that was paid also with the ministry of the "two witnesses" of the first century? If the price for our sins is death, and this sin has indeed been atoned for, then why would even repentant ones among mankind continue to die? (Ge 2:16, 17) (Re 11:3, 7, 11, 12)

Yes I realize that likely even most of the people here on this forum would reply to a question like this in a manner much like the following:

Well the caveat here (they might likely say) is that the repentant humans are still alive in God's memory or what the scriptures refer to as the "scroll of life," and this means that either their death amounted to essentially being transformed into one of the "incorruptible and immortal heavenly kings and priests" that ones like the Apostle Paul and the Apostle John spoke of, or otherwise they will be resurrected at some point to comprise the ones that these heavenly kings and priests would rule over. (1 Cor 15:51-53) (Re 5:10 20:6) (Ps 37:29)

Of course since at least most of the ones here at this website now realize that the teachings of the Watchtower organization are just as false and misleading as ANY organized religion currently on the earth, many might be inclined to adopt an even MORE mainstream view in this case. In other words they might wish to begin simply disregarding scriptures like Psalms 37:29 and Revelation 5:10 21:1-4, under the false assumption that since the Watchtower's position is wrong, this must somehow mean that the opposing viewpoints we have long been subjected to from OTHER so called "Christian" religions must therefore be correct. NOBODY actually dies, they effectively claim. The more righteously inclined people simply go to heaven in a SPIRIT form at their death, and the bad ones suffer eternal torment in a fiery hell.

But since when has it been ANYONE'S prerogative to disregard ANY of the Holy Scriptures? As far as this notion of "nobody actually dying;" isn't this the very claim that satan made in the Garden of Eden, and haven't we been explicitly commanded to NEVER adopt the more popular or mainstream views on essentially ANY matter when …"the whole world is lying in the power of the wicked one?" (Ge 3:4) (Mt 7:13, 14) (1 Joh 5:19) (Joh 15:18, 19) What is more, haven't we already been forewarned that the lies being propagated by satan and his minions would be the very things we would most DESIRE to hear and believe? (2 Ti 4:3) (Lu 16:1-8)

If the caveat here is truly that the righteous ones actually do not experience death in the sense that they are eventually resurrected, then why did both Jesus and Paul speak about a resurrection also for the UNrighteous? (Joh 5:28, 29) (Ac 24:15) If humans truly live on in a spirit form AFTER death and perhaps were even always INTENDED to, then WHAT NEED would there be for a resurrection? Moreover, if people take on SPIRITUAL bodies at their death, wouldn't they be rather impervious to things like the heat and flame of a "hell fire"? The scriptures point out that spirit creatures essentially COMPRISE such things, and if we on the other hand were to experience a resurrection in the flesh and then be PLACED in a "hell fire," wouldn't we immediately perish in such an environment? (He 1:7) (Jg 13:20) (Re 20:13-15)

This is not to mention that the dead are "conscious of NOTHING AT ALL" according to God's word, which of course would INCLUDE pain and suffering, and if we WERE in fact experiencing such things, this would of course mean that we were NOT dead. (Ecc 9:5) (Job 3:11-13) This also fails to take into account the fact that if everyone actually DID end up either in heaven or a fiery hell, there would of course be no one here on the earth for these "heavenly kings and priests" to rule over OR produce atonement for in the first place. (Re 20:6) Yes let's not forget that childbearing is foretold to cease altogether with the "new earth" the scriptures promise repentant mankind prophetically. (Isa 65:20)

Are we beginning to imagine that we never have actually been taught the truth on this Bible topic, which of course is the situation in EVERY foretold setting in which the "teachings and commands of MEN as doctrines" basically compels Jehovah to reinstall his authority and power on the earth along with the true worship that always comes with it? (Mt 15:9) While any genuine effort on our parts to actually pay heed to the divine counsel found in passages like Romans 12:1 and Acts 17:11 quickly begins to reveal inconsistencies and contradictions in connection with the current teachings on this topic, the reality here is that from a scriptural standpoint this is just the BEGINNING of the problems with EITHER of these positions on the issue of redemption or salvation from the effects of sin or otherwise the divine penalty for it.

Beginning with my next post I would like to get into at least some of these things, but before I do, would anyone perhaps have some additional input on the subject that they would like to share? Also I want to be courteous to lamesa here and the very important topic he is addressing with this thread. I would hate for him to feel like someone is trying to somehow take over a thread that he initiated since some people here do in fact begin to feel this way at times. If so please let me know (lamesa) and I would be more than happy to transfer my input on this subject to a different thread. My personal position on this is that the whole idea of starting a thread is to generate an open discussion on a given subject, but not everyone sees it quite that way. Nevertheless I'm certain everyone here would agree that the only thing that is truly important in the end is to get to the bottom of what the Holy Scriptures ACTUALLY teach on any given topic.

Agape love;
Sol

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coccus ilicis
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Re: Am I Forgiven?

#8 Post by coccus ilicis » 3 weeks ago

Get out of her wrote: 3 weeks ago lamesa wrote:
Am I Forgiven?

“Your sins have been forgiven you.” —1 John 2:12.

“For the wages sin pays is death” (Romans 6:23).
Agape love;
Sol
Hello Sol,

I think you might be wasting your breath. Here is what Iamesa wrote 6 days ago in post 19, which I completely missed.
Good bye. This has been an interesting experience for me because it has confirmed what I have come to realize, which is the JW doctrines and values are pagan, with Christian labels. Now I understand why "Christendom," says the JWs (and the other cults, including Mormons and Seventh Day Adventists) are not Christian. They were right.
Iamesa has knocked on our door, and departed shaking the dust off her feet. I guess she doesn't realize that she is doing the same work that JWs have been doing for over a century. I can remember doing the same in the door-to-door ministry, after talking to born again Christians.
LRW~

Get out of her
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Re: Am I Forgiven?

#9 Post by Get out of her » 3 weeks ago

Thanks for the heads up on that CI. I did actually see that post but it appeared to me for some reason that lamesa had continued at least momentarily to continue posting, so I wasn't quite sure what to make of it. Perhaps I was mistaken. Anyway since this is certainly an important Bible topic my intention is to continue posting on it.

Get out of her
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Re: Am I Forgiven?

#10 Post by Get out of her » 3 weeks ago

As I have already demonstrated with the scriptures, any logical thought sequence in connection with them quickly exposes serious problems with the current teachings on this topic of divine redemption from sin and its deadly consequences that were delineated for humankind from the very start. (Ge 2:16, 17) As long as we are not taught the truth on ANY given Bible subject, we will CONTINUE to encounter scriptures that make things appear as confusing, contradictory and mysterious. The reason however that I basically ALWAYS begin a discussion on yet another false teaching by clearly exposing it as exactly that is because once this fact is genuinely recognized by at least SOME people, they would be much better prepared to accept what the scriptures ACTUALLY teach on the matter.

The problem here as per usual is that we have long been deceived on this topic at even the most fundamental level. For that reason these falsehoods are DEEPLY ingrained in us, and the tragic reality here is that most of us will simply not be able to let go of them until we are basically forced to with another full manifestation or "coming/birth" of Jehovah's nation. At that point however the opportunity for us to be included among its heavenly kings and priests will have been lost. Do we perhaps require even MORE scriptural proof that we have been methodically and insidiously misled on this topic? Well consider this:

As far as this "scroll of life" that Jehovah furnished and began to fill with the ministry and priestly atoning sacrifice of the "two witnesses" of the first century, here in the 13th Chapter of Revelation we find the Apostle John prophesying events that will completely EMPTY this list of ALL the names of the people occupying the earth at that time. (Re 13:7, 8) What should make things even MORE sobering for us here is that this prophesy was preceded by another one that marked a time AFTER the first century in which the very SAME ministry and sacrificial death of two genuine prophets would have been repeated yet again! (Re 11:3, 7, 11, 12) This was in fact the ministry and subsequent blood inauguration of a renewed holy covenant that would prompt the extremely appreciative words we find at Revelation 7:9, 10. (Yes the time period of the "sixth king" or "sixth trumpet blast" is actually referred to as the "sixth seal" in this account) (Re 6:12 9:13 17:10) The subsequent and extremely tragic events foretold to occur in Revelation 11:13 in turn are precisely what account for and require YET ANOTHER foretold birth of Jehovah's nation and its commensurate "harvest of the firstfruits" we consider in the symbolic spiritual language found in Revelation 12:5. The spiritual fall that THIS manifestation of Jehovah's kingdom would subsequently experience is precisely what would account for the very troubling words found at Revelation 13:7, 8, and by consequence create the NEED for the FINAL foretold "reaping" or "harvest of the firstfruits" required for the manifestation of Jehovah's kingdom we often refer to as the Millennial Reign. (Re 14:15, 16) (1 Cor 15:23)

Have we forgotten not only that these words were prophetic, but also that they were uttered well AFTER the renewed and inaugurated kingdom covenant that occurred in 33CE? (Lu 22:28, 29) (He 9:16-18, 26-28) If so, this is because we have been heavily CONDITIONED to overlook such things, just as is the case with the simple fact that for it to even be POSSIBLE for one to qualify as a fellow heavenly PRIEST along with their "leader, head, or foundation cornerstone," they would of course at some point need to furnish the very same blood atonement. (Re 6:11)

Yes it should already be exceedingly clear that when we read about the priestly sacrifice of 33CE being "once for all time," this was at least in part with reference to the fact that PERFECT blood would be produced as such on this occasion. In other words its priceless value could now be applied to the blood inaugurations of ALL the holy covenants that both HAD been formed and would SUBSEQUENTLY be formed between Jehovah and mankind. (He 9:12, 16-18) However if we simply continue reading this same 9th Chapter of Hebrews, we find that this term "once for all time" applies also in some sense even in the case some IMPERFECT prophets or "two witnesses" whose sacrificial deaths would be "RESERVED" for "births" of God's nation even well BEYOND the first century. (He 9:27) (Jer 15:9)


“And just as it is RESERVED for men to die ONCE FOR ALL TIME, but after this to receive a judgment, so also the Christ was offered up ONCE FOR ALL TIME to bear the sins of many… (Hebrews 9:27, 28)


Obviously therefore this term "once for all time" in connection with the blood atonement of the Christ is actually serving as a CONFIRMATION of some ADDITIONAL teachings of the Bible that we have long been conditioned to overlook or disregard. What exactly might these be?

Once again the Christ was NEVER described or identified as a PERSON in the Holy Scriptures, but rather a "body" comprised of "MANY members." (1 Cor 12:12) (Ro 12:4, 5) So the question now is how exactly would the blood inaugurations of a renewed kingdom covenant involving IMPERFECT AND SINFUL members of the Christ qualify as "once for all time"? The fact is there are only two possibilities in their case, even if there are THREE in the case of their "head" or "foundation cornerstone." (1 Pe 2:6) (Col 1:18)

We would undoubtedly do well to bear in mind that the first century Bible writers were dealing with a Hebrew culture that had only EVER been familiar with the concept of priests who were CONSTANTLY performing sacrifices for this "atonement for sin" that Jehovah often referred to. The time had now come however for people to recognize that these sacrifices had long served to point prophetically and symbolically towards a SELF sacrifice that FUTURE priests of Jehovah would be engaged in. Obviously when it would come to the SPIRITUAL manifestation of Israel or the "reality" that the "copy" or "typical representation" had long pointed to in an illustrative manner, Jehovah's priests could only perform this sacrificial function on ONE occasion. (He 8:5 9:24)

Yes clearly what had actually just QUALIFIED these ones as priests meant that they could not now come back in the flesh and perform ADDITIONAL sacrifices, or this would actually mean they had NOT given up or forfeited a life in the flesh. What is more, in this case the atoning VALUE of this self sacrifice would serve in a "PERPETUAL" manner for sin, or otherwise would qualify as what the prophet Daniel had long beforehand identified as a "CONTINUAL sacrifice." (He 10:12) (Da 11:31) "Continual" atonement at east until the "holy covenant" that would always PLACE it in Jehovah's earthly "sanctuary" would be "left" or "acted wickedly against" on the part of the theocratic shepherds it is always formed with. (Da 11:30-32) This act of unfaithfulness or spiritual adultery on their part would now "REMOVE" the atoning value of this priestly sacrifice just as this account in Daniel makes clear, and this in turn is precisely what produces the need for yet ANOTHER of the foretold "births" of the figurative "barren woman" or "comings of Jehovah's kingdom." (Jer 15:9)

Once again, have we managed to overlook that (with the exception of Daniel's account of course) these words were prophesied well AFTER the priestly act of atonement that occurred in 33 CE? But the fact is that there is even MORE involved with the deception we are dealing with here on the subject of forgiveness of sin or more specifically divine redemption or atonement for its death dealing effects. A good example of this can be found by simply paying closer attention to the account lamesa directed our attention to there in Romans Chapter 6. While we ALWAYS seem to have our attention directed merely to verses like 23, notice the rather enlightening information we find in other verses even right among this very same chapter:


Consequently, what shall we say? Shall we continue to sin, that undeserved kindness may abound? 2 Never may that happen! Seeing that we DIED WITH REFERENCE TO SIN, how shall we keep living any longer with reference to it? 3 Or do you not know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were also baptized into his death? 4 Therefore we were buried with him through our baptism into his death, in order that just as Christ was raised up from the dead through the glory of the father, we also should walk in a NEWNESS OF LIFE. 5 For if we have become united with him in the likeness of his death, we shall certainly also be united with him in the likeness of his resurrection. 6 Because we know that our OLD PERSONALITY was impaled WITH HIM that our sinful body may be made inactive, that we should no longer go on being slaves to sin. 7 For he who has died has been ACQUITTED from his sin. (Ro 6:1-7)


Would anyone perhaps have a comment or two on this passage of scripture and how it should impact or even expand the way we understand the topic of forgiveness or atonement from sin and its divine penalty of death? Either way my intention is to pick up the discussion with this account in Romans beginning with my next post.

Agape love;
Sol

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