Having examined the two greatest events that have
influenced mankind, how may we summarize the things that
we have learned and apply them to our lives? To do that
we must first of all differentiate between the two types
of individuals that may be found reading this book—the
unbeliever and those who have already trusted Christ.
Since all of us begin our lives as unbelievers, and
since the greatest need of any individual is to be
reconciled to God, we begin there.
sure that there are many, even as myself, that are
confused about what it means to believe in Christ, trust
Christ, or be saved. Having been raised in a
nominally Christian home, where God was honored, we
prayed at meals, and we sometimes went to Church—I
already considered myself to be a Christian. After all,
I believed in God, believed in Jesus, and prayed.
However, those beliefs, which to me were only a
head-knowledge, brought me no comfort, or had very
little effect upon my life. Indeed, the Bible declares,
“Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest
well: the devils also believe, and tremble.”
Everyone, except the most reprobate of men, believe in
some god. The evidence of creation is so strong that no
one will have any excuse about the existence of God.
Furthermore, most people who are raised in the West,
know and believe some facts about the man we call Jesus
Christ. Additionally, all men will pray to God in some
fashion, particularly when their life is threatened. So
what I believed and practiced was little more than what
most people did. Further proof of the ineffectiveness of
what I believed was the downward spiral of my life into
sin and degradation. It was not until I reached the age
of twenty-five, that for the first time in my life, I
was awakened by God to see myself as a sinner.
Jam 2:19 Thou
believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the
devils also believe, and tremble.
Rom 1:18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven
against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men,
who hold the truth in unrighteousness;
19 Because that which may be known of God is manifest in
them; for God hath shewed it unto them.
20 For the invisible things of him from the creation
of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the
things that are made, even his eternal power and
Godhead; so that they are without excuse:
first truth that anyone must come to understand about
themselves, is that they too are a sinner. Through
Adam’s transgression, the entire human race has
inherited, from our first father, what is called the
sin nature. When Adam partook of the forbidden
fruit, and obligated himself to keep the law of God, his
posterity inherited this indebtedness also. God’s law
now condemns all of mankind, because we fail to measure
up to its demands. None of us can satisfy the Law’s
requirements of perfect obedience, and therefore it
condemns us. There is nothing good that any of us can do
to earn heaven, because everything we do falls short of
perfect holiness. We are absolute sinners through and
through; we are not as bad as we can be, we can be
another devil; but everything we are and everything we
do is corrupted by sin.
Rom 5:19 For as by one man's disobedience many were
made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many
be made righteous.
Rom 3:19 Now we know that what things soever the law
saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that
every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become
guilty before God.
by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be
justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge
Furthermore, those of Adam’s race are born spiritually
dead—separated from God; we are “shapen in iniquity,”
“estranged from the womb”; all sinners “go
astray as soon as they be born, speaking lies.” We
do not sin to become a sinner, we sin because we are a
sinner. The evidence that all of Adam’s race has
inherited this fallen nature is that “all have
sinned, and come short of the glory of God.” The
Scriptures witness against us by proclaiming “There
is none righteous, no, not one”; there is none that
doeth good, no, not one.”
Eph 2:1 And you hath he quickened, who were dead in
trespasses and sins;
Psa 51:5 Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin
did my mother conceive me.
(David was not saying his
mother bore him illegitimately, but they he was born
with the sin nature.)
Psa 58:3 The
wicked are estranged from the womb: they go astray as
soon as they be born, speaking lies.
Rom 3:23 For all have sinned, and come short of the
glory of God;
Rom 3:10 As it is written, There is none righteous,
no, not one:
11 There is none that understandeth, there is none that
seeketh after God.
12 They are all gone out of the way, they are together
there is none that doeth
good, no, not one.
while most people will acknowledge, to some degree, that
they are not perfect, and may have done a few bad
things, only God can bring a person to realize the
awfulness of their condition. Because we are born
spiritually blind, we do not comprehend just what it
means to be a sinner. As such, we are a part of an alien
race that is the enemy of God. We hate God so much, that
when He sent His Son to this earth, we crucified Him.
God is not, as many believe, our Father—sinners have no
relationship with God; and we have no hope beyond this
Eph 2:12 That at that time ye were without Christ,
being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and
strangers from the covenants of promise,
having no hope, and
without God in the world:
John 15:18 If the world hate you, ye know that it
hated me before it hated you.
John 15:24 If I had not done among them the works which
none other man did, they had not had sin: but now
have they both seen and hated both me and my Father.
Col 1:21 And you, that were sometime alienated and
enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now hath
What then, is the status of our being sinners, the
enemies of God? Although much is said about the love of
God, very little is taught about the holiness,
righteousness, and justice of God. God is not like some
aged grandfather, who smiles down upon His wayward
children. On the contrary, the Scriptures are very clear
on how God feels about sin and the sinner. When we read
such passages as “God is angry with the wicked every
day,” “thou art not a God that hath pleasure in
wickedness,” and, “thou hatest all workers of
iniquity,” we realize that all is not well with us
as sinners. Indeed, we are told that upon every sinner “the
wrath of God abideth on him.”
Isa 6:1 In the year that king Uzziah died I saw also the
Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up, and his
train filled the temple.
2 Above it stood the seraphims: each one had six wings;
with twain he covered his face, and with twain he
covered his feet, and with twain he did fly.
3 And one cried unto another, and said, Holy, holy,
holy, is the LORD of hosts: the whole earth is full
of his glory.
Psa 7:11 God judgeth the righteous, and God is angry
with the wicked every day.
Psa 5:4 For thou art not a God that hath pleasure in
wickedness: neither shall evil dwell with thee.
5 The foolish shall not stand in thy sight: thou
hatest all workers of iniquity.
John 3:36 He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting
life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see
life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.
What then, is the consequence of our being sinners, the
enemies of God? First of all, we are condemned by God.
Most people are under the impression that everyone will
stand before God some day and be judged. At this
judgment God will decide who will enter Heaven and who
will be condemned—not so. The Bible is clear— “he
that believeth not is condemned already.” Already we
are under the wrath of God; already our fate has been
decided; already we are condemned to perdition. The only
thing that awaits us is, how bad will our punishment
John 3:18 He that believeth on him is not condemned:
but he that believeth not is condemned already,
because he hath not believed in the name of the only
begotten Son of God.
Rev 20:12 And I saw the dead, small and great, stand
before God; and the books were opened: and another book
was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead
were judged out of those things which were written in
the books, according to their works.
13 And the sea gave up the dead which were in it;
and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in
them: and they
were judged every man according to their works.
Because of our fallen nature, we are condemned to die.
Most people consider death to be a natural part of life
on earth—not so. Death is unnatural to this world. Death
was not a part of God’s creation until Adam fell. Death
was a result of Adam being separated from the One who is
life—God. Furthermore, as we have already studied, death
is not the final end of our existence. Once the
spirit\soul leaves the body, the unbeliever awaits the
final judgment in the prison house of hell. We
understand from the Scriptures that this is located in
the center of this earth; and that the inhabitants of
that place are very conscious of where they are, and
live there in torment. Finally, at the end of this
world, the bodies of the unbelievers will be
resurrected, and their spirit\souls will be brought out
of hell. Those that are lost will stand before
God—wholly in their body, soul, and spirit. At this
judgment, called The Great White Throne, the records of
everyman’s life will be examined, and the just due for
everyman’s sins will be dispensed. The final home of all
unbelievers will be the Lake of Fire, where, for all
eternity, the retribution for their sins will be
Rom 5:12 Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the
world, and death
by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all
Rom 6:23 For the wages of sin is death; but the
gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our
Luke 16:22 And it came to pass, that the beggar died,
and was carried by the angels into Abraham's bosom: the
rich man also died, and was buried;
23 And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments,
and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom.
Rev 20:12 And I saw the dead, small and great, stand
before God; and the books were opened: and another
book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead
were judged out of those things which were written in
the books, according to their works.
13 And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and
death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them:
and they were judged every man according to their works.
14 And death and hell were cast into the lake of
fire. This is the second death.
15 And whosoever
was not found written in the book of life was cast into
the lake of fire.
Howbeit, this we say, if the preceding scenario has
caused you consternation, there is hope for you. God has
made a way of escape from this eternal damnation, for
those who will avail themselves of it. The first step
toward this escape is to admit before God that you are a
sinner who justly deserves condemnation. Then, you must
be willing to forsake your life of sin and accept the
life that God has for you in Christ. This is what is
called “repentance toward God.” Now, I hear the
voices of many who would say, ‘But I don’t think I
can overcome certain sins or habits in my life’ ; or
‘I don’t think I can live like a Christian is
supposed to live.’ Those kinds of statements are
irrelevant to becoming a child of God. The real issue is
your willingness to yield yourself to God, and allow Him
to transform you as He would. We can never quit
sinning, or become good enough for God to
save us—which leads us to the next point.
Acts 20:21 Testifying both to the Jews, and also to the
Greeks, repentance toward God, and faith toward
our Lord Jesus Christ.
Matt 9:13 But go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will
have mercy, and not sacrifice:
for I am not come to call
the righteous, but sinners to repentance.
Cor 7:10 For godly sorrow worketh repentance to
salvation not to be repented of: but the sorrow of
the world worketh death.
There is absolutely nothing a lost sinner can do to make
amends for their past life, or to earn a place in Heaven
by doing something good. If you are truly repentant, and
are seeking someway to atone for your sins or to endear
yourself to God—stop trying. There is nothing you can do
but throw yourself upon the mercies of God and allow Him
to save you. Joining a church, or being baptized, or
cleaning up your life will do you absolutely no good.
You must be saved and converted by God before any of
these kinds of things become meaningful.
Tit 3:5 Not by works of righteousness which we have
done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the
washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;
Luke 18:13 And the publican, standing afar off, would
not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote
upon his breast, saying,
God be merciful to me a
question then becomes “what must I do to be saved?”
The answer is so simple that even a child can
understand it—“Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and
thou shalt be saved.” The problem is, that we have
so complicated the plain meaning of this text, that we
have made it ineffectual. Churches and religions,
pastors and priests, traditions and false doctrines,
have so clouded the plain truth, that only God can open
the blinded eyes of a person and make the truth
effectual to them.
Acts 16:30 And brought them out, and said, Sirs, what
must I do to be saved?
31 And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ,
and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.
Gal 1:6 I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him
that called you into the grace of Christ unto another
7 Which is not another; but there be some that trouble
you, and would
pervert the gospel of Christ.
Because our nature has been so skewed by Adam’s fall, it
is impossible for us to think that our salvation
requires no work of our own; but that we must rely
totally upon someone else to save us. When the demands
of the Law came to bear upon Adam and his race, it was
necessary for us to try to work to satisfy its
requirements; but the salvation that God has provided
does away with those self-works. Instead, we must rely
totally and completely upon what God has done for us in
Gal 2:16 Knowing that a
man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the
faith of Jesus Christ,
even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be
justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works
of the law: for
by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.
might illustrate what we are saying this way. I once
crossed a very long suspension bridge that hung over a
very deep gorge. Even though I made the trip quite
safely, if the bridge had failed while I crossed it, I
would have fallen to a certain death on the rocks below.
Now, I had nothing to do with building the bridge; I had
absolutely no part in designing it or in the
construction of it; furthermore, there was nothing about
the way I crossed the bridge that aided it in keeping me
safe—the bridge did all the work. Apart from me jumping
over the railings, the steel cables, anchored into the
sides of the gorge, did all that was necessary to secure
my passage. Even so it is with God’s salvation. We need
to cross from this sin-cursed earth to Heaven above, and
God has built a bridge. The Father designed it, Jesus
built it, and the Holy Spirit sustains it. By faith, if
we step out upon what God has built, we will make the
trip quite safely. Furthermore, once we are on the
bridge, God’s hand will not even allow us to fall or
jump over the side; we will, without a doubt, complete
our journey safe and secure.
John 6:28 Then said they unto him, What shall we do,
that we might work the works of God?
29 Jesus answered and said unto them,
This is the work of God,
that ye believe on him whom he hath sent.
John 10:28 And I give unto them eternal life; and
they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck
them out of my hand.
29 My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all;
and no man is
able to pluck them out of my Father's hand.
Furthermore, looking upon that bridge before crossing
it, I observed how well it was built, how strong the
cables appeared, how well the decking was secured, and
the bridge seemed to be in excellent condition.
Furthermore, I watched several other people cross it
safely, and believed it would hold me also. Therefore, I
found implanted within me faith in that bridge and the
work of the men who built it. This faith gave me the
courage to step out upon the bridge and walk across.
Likewise, when we hear and read the Word of God; when we
examine the bridge of salvation that God has built; when
we hear the testimonies of others who have crossed it;
and when we come to believe in the greatness of the God
who has provided for us this salvation, we find within
ourselves the faith to trust in His salvation also. The
moment we see Jesus dying on the cross for our
sins—believing that what He has done is all that is
necessary for us to be saved—we will step out and put
our trust in Him. For those who are truly repentant, and
to whom God gives the faith to believe upon His Son,
they become a child of God and receive eternal life.
Rom 10:17 So
then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of
John 4:39 And many of the Samaritans of that city
believed on him for the saying of the woman, which
testified, He told me all that ever I did.
40 So when the Samaritans were come unto him, they
besought him that he would tarry with them: and he abode
there two days.
41 And many more believed because of his own word;
42 And said unto
the woman, Now we believe, not because of thy saying:
for we have heard him ourselves, and know that this is
indeed the Christ, the Saviour of the world.
John 5:24 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that
heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath
everlasting life, and shall not come into
condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.
Eph 2:8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and
that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
9 Not of works, lest any man should boast.
then is the message to the unbeliever— “repent ye,
and believe the gospel.” What is the Gospel?—
“Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures;
And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third
day according to the scriptures:” Call upon God to
have mercy upon you and save you for Jesus sake—“For
whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be
on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved.”
Mark 1:14 Now after that John was put in prison, Jesus
came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom
15 And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of
God is at hand:
repent ye, and believe the gospel.
Cor 15:1 Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the
gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have
received, and wherein ye stand;
2 By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory
what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in
3 For I delivered unto you first of all that which I
how that Christ died for our sins according to the
4 And that he was buried, and that he rose again the
third day according to the scriptures:
Rom 10:12 For there is no difference between the Jew and
the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto
all that call upon him.
whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be
Isa 55:6 Seek ye the LORD while he may be found, call
ye upon him while he is near:
7 Let the
wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his
thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD, and he will
have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will
us now progress to summarize what the message of The
Garden and the Gospel is for those who are the true
children of God. We have examined in detail what the
effects of Adam’s sin has had upon the body, soul, and
spirit of man. We have also studied how the death,
burial, and resurrection of Christ was God’s means to
redeem fallen man; and, for those of you who have
experienced God’s grace, you have found much of what has
been said to be true. The problem, I have found, in mine
own life and in viewing the lives of others, is that we
tend to forget those truths about ourselves and God’s
means of salvation which are so vital to the Christian
Gal 1:6 I marvel
that ye are so soon removed from him that called you
into the grace of Christ unto another gospel:
fail to consider what we are apart from Christ. We lose
the sense of how wretched we are in ourselves, the
depravity of our sin nature which still abounds in the
flesh— “For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,)
dwelleth no good thing.” While Christ has made a
great change in us, we must never forget the “horrible
pit” out of which He raised us, and the “miry
clay” of the flesh we wallowed in.
Rom 7:18 For I know that in me (that is, in my
flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is
present with me; but how to perform that which is good I
Psa 40:2 He
brought me up also out of an horrible pit, out of the
miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established
Because ours lives have gotten so much better then when
we floundered in sin, we fail to recognize the evil
nature which is still apart of us. As believers we are
on guard against the world and the devil, but we often
ignore our greatest enemy—the flesh. The carnal desires
which once reigned over us may be subdued as God’s
Spirit now strengthens us; but once we get our eyes off
of Christ, they are ready to once again take control of
Rom 7:5 For when
we were in the flesh, the motions of sins, which were by
the law, did work in our members to bring forth fruit
Matt 26:41 Watch and pray, that ye enter not into
spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.
Because of our strong desire to be elevated beyond what
we really are—“the creature was made subject to
vanity”—we can become proud. Religious people can be
some of the most puffed up, arrogant people to be
found anywhere. Instead of being a humble witness of
God’s mercy and grace, we are a stench in the nostrils
of God and lost sinners. When we have a “holier than
thou” attitude toward others, we turn them away from
Christ. As believers, we need to remember the first time
we stood before God as empty handed sinners, begging
only for His mercy; that is still the only ground we can
stand on before Him.
Rom 8:20 For the creature was made subject to vanity,
not willingly, but by reason of him who hath subjected
the same in hope,
Eph 4:17 This I say therefore, and testify in the Lord,
henceforth walk not as other Gentiles walk, in the
vanity of their mind,
Isa 65:5 Which say, Stand by thyself, come not near
to me; for I am holier than thou. These are a smoke in
my nose, a fire that burneth all the day.
Psa 6:1 O LORD, rebuke me not in thine anger, neither
chasten me in thy hot displeasure.
2 Have mercy upon me, O LORD; for I am weak: O
LORD, heal me; for my bones are vexed.
3 My soul is also sore vexed: but thou, O LORD, how
4 Return, O LORD, deliver my soul:
oh save me for thy
self-righteous attitude leads to all kinds of offenses
against other people. We are unmerciful toward weaker
brethren or the lost. We become judgmental about the
faults we see in other peoples lives. In thinking we are
better than others, we become bigots, and
discriminate against people we imagine to be inferior to
us. These kinds of feelings greatly hinder the work of
God, and bring upon ourselves the chastening hand of
Luke 6:36 Be ye therefore merciful, as your Father
also is merciful.
37 Judge not, and ye shall not be judged: condemn
not, and ye shall not be condemned: forgive, and ye
shall be forgiven:
Jam 2:1 My brethren, have not the faith of our Lord
Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory, with respect of
2 For if there come unto your assembly a man with a gold
ring, in goodly apparel, and there come in also a poor
man in vile raiment;
3 And ye have respect to him that weareth the gay
clothing, and say unto him, Sit thou here in a good
place; and say to the poor, Stand thou there, or sit
here under my footstool:
4 Are ye not
then partial in yourselves, and are become judges of
have an inbreed tendency to again try to please God by
the works of our flesh. This works philosophy,
that became a part of our nature when Adam partook of
the forbidden fruit, is ingrained in our flesh. We
forget that when we came to God as a sinner we had
nothing to offer Him but the blood of Jesus. God
accepted us for Jesus’ sake, and nothing has changed.
Just because we are now a child of God does not mean we
have the ability to earn God’s grace or blessings. God
will never be pleased with us because we now try to obey
His law, do good deeds, or perform some pious rituals.
If fact, the moment we put ourselves back under the law
we fall from grace.
Gal 3:2 This only would I learn of you, Received ye
the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of
3 Are ye so
foolish? having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made
perfect by the flesh?
Gal 5:1 Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith
Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again
with the yoke of bondage.
2 Behold, I Paul say unto you, that if ye be
circumcised, Christ shall profit you nothing.
3 For I testify again to every man that is circumcised,
that he is a debtor to do the whole law.
4 Christ is
become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are
justified by the law; ye are fallen from grace.
we fall from grace we lose the joy of salvation;
Christian service becomes a burden; the fruits of the
Spirit are non-evident in our lives; we fall out of love
with God and with other people; we become quick-tempered
and unkind; and there is no desire to see the lost come
to Christ, or are we concerned about the work of God. It
is only as we abide in Christ that these fruits are a
reality in ours lives.
Gal 5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy,
peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,
23 Meekness, temperance: against such there is no
24 And they that are Christ's have crucified the flesh
with the affections and lusts.
25 If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the
John 15:4 Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch
cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the
vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me.
5 I am the vine,
ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in
him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me
ye can do nothing.
Many of God’s children have set their affections upon
this world and what it has to offer. Jesus told Pilate,
“My kingdom is not of this world.” He gave up all
that the world had to offer in order to redeem His
Bride—the Church. When we give our affections to the
world and the things of the world, we are betraying
Christ. We pray and ask for God’s blessing upon us
concerning the material things of life; but we are
unconcerned about the work of Christ. When are attitude
is such—we are “adulterers and adulteresses”; and
“whosoever … will be a friend of the world is the
enemy of God.” We must allow God to crucify these
fleshly desires until we set our “affection
on things above, not on things on the earth.”
John 18:36 Jesus answered, My kingdom is not of this
world: if my kingdom were of this world, then would
my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the
Jews: but now is my kingdom not from hence.
John 2:15 Love not the world, neither the things that
are in the world. If any man love the world, the
love of the Father is not in him.
16 For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh,
and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not
of the Father, but is of the world.
17 And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but
he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.
Jam 4:3 Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss,
that ye may consume it upon your lusts.
4 Ye adulterers
and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the
world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a
friend of the world is the enemy of God.
Gal 6:14 But God forbid that I should glory, save in the
cross of our Lord Jesus Christ,
by whom the world is
crucified unto me, and I unto the world.
Col 3:1 If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those
things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the
right hand of God.
2 Set your affection on things above, not on things
on the earth.
3 For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in
4 When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall
ye also appear with him in glory.
Christian life is a life of faith. It began when we
trusted Jesus and the work He accomplished on our
behalf; and it is lived by continuing to look “unto
Jesus the author and finisher of our faith.” By
faith we receive strength to overcome sin and the world.
By faith we receive power to carry out the work of God.
By faith we see God answer our prayers. Finally, by
faith we await the day when Jesus shall return. We await
His return to resurrect those who have died in Christ;
to change those who still live in Christ; and to set up
His Kingdom here on this earth.
Gal 3:11 But that no man is justified by the law in the
sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live
12 And the law is not of faith: but, The man that doeth
them shall live in them.
13 Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law,
being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is
every one that hangeth on a tree:
Heb 12:2 Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher
of our faith; who for the joy that was set before
him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set
down at the right hand of the throne of God.
Pet 1:5 Who are kept by the power of God through
faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the
John 5:4 For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the
world: and this
is the victory that overcometh the world, even our
Acts 6:8 And
Stephen, full of faith and power, did great wonders and
miracles among the people.
James 5:15 And the prayer of faith shall save the
sick, and the Lord shall raise him up; and if he
have committed sins, they shall be forgiven him.
Receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of
the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ, God did
all that was necessary to save us; and it is our death,
burial, and resurrection that God works to conform us to
the image of His Son. The suffering of the cross is
never pleasant, but for a child of God it is an absolute
necessity. Charles Spurgeon is quoted as saying, ‘He
doubted that anything of significant value had ever
happened in his life except through suffering.’ It
takes suffering to bring us again and again to the foot
of the cross, where we cry out, ‘God be merciful to
me a sinner.’ Its takes suffering before we will
give up the ways of the flesh and accept the life God
has for us in Christ. It is in the burial of the old man
that a child of God can come forth from the grave to a
new life. When we die to the flesh, that life is buried,
gone forever. After the cross and the grave comes the
resurrection, where God reveals to us an ever deeper
life in Christ than we have ever known. For a child of
God, this suffering of the cross, the burial of the old
man, and being raised to new life in Christ, will be
repeated again and again until Christ becomes our “all
and in all.”
Rom 8:29 For whom he did foreknow, he also did
predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son,
that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.
Phil 3:8 Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss
for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my
Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all
things, and do count them but dung, that I may win
9 And be found in him, not having mine own
righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is
through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is
of God by faith:
10 That I may know him, and the power of his
resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings,
being made conformable unto his death;
11 If by any means I might attain unto the
resurrection of the dead.
12 Not as though I had already attained, either were
already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may
apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ
13 Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended:
but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which
are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which
14 I press toward the mark for the prize of the
high calling of God in Christ Jesus.
15 Let us therefore, as many as be perfect, be thus
minded: and if in any thing ye be otherwise minded, God
shall reveal even this unto you.
Col 3:9 Lie not one to another, seeing that ye have
put off the old man with his deeds;
10 And have put on the new man, which is renewed
in knowledge after the image of him that created him:
11 Where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcision
nor uncircumcision, Barbarian, Scythian, bond nor free:
but Christ is
all, and in all.
redeemed child of God, we have no choice but to follow
our Lord in His death, burial, and resurrection. In our
repentance towards God, we choose to accept whatever God
would do to make us like Christ. We are not promised
happiness as Christians, but we are promised
peace and joy—and there is a great
difference. Happiness depends upon happenings. If we are
looking for happiness we will be greatly disappointed.
The truth is that God removes many of those things that
make us happy to crucify the flesh. Peace and joy, on
the other hand, are the gifts of God to those who abide
in Christ. Nothing and no one can take them from us.
They do not depend upon circumstances, but upon the
Cor 15:19 If in this life only we have hope in
Christ, we are of all men most miserable.
20 But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become
the firstfruits of them that slept.
John 14:27 Peace I leave with you, my peace I give
unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you.
Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be
John 15:11 These
things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain
in you, and that your joy might be full.
final word to those who are in Christ: let us be “patient
in tribulation”—knowing that “it is God which
worketh in you”; let us “be content with such
things as ye have”—knowing that “God shall supply
all your need”; and let us abide in Christ, and have
His Word abiding in us—knowing that we shall “bear
much fruit” to the glory of Christ and of God. These
simple guidelines will avail us much that we might
“finish (our) course with joy”; and that we
might one day hear our Saviour say, “Well
done, good and faithful servant; thou hast been faithful
over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many
things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.”
Rom 12:12 Rejoicing in hope; patient in tribulation;
continuing instant in prayer;
Phil 2:12 Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always
obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in
my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and
13 For it is God
which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good
Heb 13:5 Let your conversation be without covetousness;
and be content with such things as ye have: for
he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.
Phil 4:19 But my
God shall supply all your need according to his riches
in glory by Christ Jesus.
John 15:7 If ye abide in me, and my words abide in
you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done
8 Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much
fruit; so shall ye be my disciples.
Acts 20:24 But none of these things move me, neither
count I my life dear unto myself, so that I might
finish my course with joy, and the ministry, which I
have received of the Lord Jesus, to testify the gospel
of the grace of God.
Matt 25:23 His lord said unto him, Well done, good
and faithful servant; thou hast been faithful over a few
things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter
thou into the joy of thy lord.
* * * * *
has been our desire, that the reader of this study, The
Garden and the Gospel, has profited spiritually by
what has been put forth. While much of what we have said
will be readily embraced by many Christian believers,
some things will be taken as an offense to beliefs that
many hold dear. The only recourse we offer to those who
would object to the viewpoint of this book, is to be
like the people of Berea, who “received the word
with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures
daily, whether those things were so.” What any man
speaks or writes must be authenticated by the Anvil of
Truth—the Word of God. While some may muse “What will
this babbler say? other some, He seemeth to be a setter
forth of strange gods,” our only defense is the
Scriptures from which we draw our conclusions. Finally,
“though we be as
reprobates” “we can do nothing against the truth, but
for the truth.”
Acts 17:10 And the brethren immediately sent away Paul
and Silas by night unto Berea: who coming thither went
into the synagogue of the Jews.
11 These were
more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they
received the word with all readiness of mind, and
searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were
Tim 3:15 And that from a child thou hast known the holy
scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto
salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.
16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God,
and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for
correction, for instruction in righteousness:
17 That the man of God may be perfect, throughly
furnished unto all good works.
Acts 17:18 Then certain philosophers of the Epicureans,
and of the Stoicks, encountered him. And some said,
What will this babbler say? other some, He seemeth to be
a setter forth of strange gods: because he preached
unto them Jesus, and the resurrection.
Cor 13:7 Now I pray to God that ye do no evil; not that
we should appear approved, but that ye should do that
which is honest, though we be as reprobates.
8 For we can do nothing against the truth, but for