God has a master plan which includes lessons for all of His children to learn, but we cannot learn them without His help. He is the True Teacher(1).
I will begin with a few questions that I will answer but you may not agree with. The point being that you are to question everything I say, then go to Godís Word and see for yourself. Remember that there are three places to find Godís Word and all other places may be truth or may just be an opinion. Imagine a spring where water comes from and the most pure is at the source. The further from the source the more chances of pollution. God wants us to get The Truth from Him. He is not only the True Teacher, but He is The True Shepherd (not your pastor / minister), He is The True Father (not the person who raised you), He is The True Husband ( not the person you are married to), and He is The True Comforter (not the person who is your best friend).
Where can I find Godís Word?
The first is through our Lord Jesus Christ
The second is through His Holy Spirit
The third is His written Word, the Bible
I have put these in order of importance. If we go to the Bible first, then there is a tendency for self interpretation of His word. Through prayer we are asking God what He wants us to know and understand and He will give us His Holy Spirit to help guide us(2). Without the help of the Holy Spirit we are again independent of Godís help and we cannot be assured of accuracy.
The Bible is History (His Story) and also is symbolic and It represents Godís lessons in a way that everyone can benefit at any time in our history (past, present and future).
Why would God allow us to sin?
Sin was allowed to enter Godís creation:
so that we could learn exactly what sin is and all the consequences that it has,
so that we could appreciate the gift of Love, because we would have something to compare it to
so we could have the gift of free will, free will involves having a choice between Love and pride
so we could choose Love (God) and live or choose pride(3) (sin) and die
Why is fellowship with other children of God (4) so important?
There are lots of reasons but I will only mention these few:
Not all of us walk very closely with God, so talking with Him and listening to what He says isnít something we all know how to do or how to do well. God uses His children to speak through. Children of God can be like a mirror or a sounding board to show us where our strengths and weaknesses are. Once we are closely walking with God, the less there is a need for this dependancy upon other people. We can instead go directly to God and we can also show others how to walk closer to God through our example. God wants us to eventually be dependant only on Him, not on people or things.
Fellowship is also vital in encouraging each other in our walk with God. The path toward The Truth is not always easy. There are many trials and tribulations, along the way.
Another reason is, that we all need to learn how to get along with each other. We learn how to get along, by loving and helping each other, no matter what our differences are. God made each of us unique and He always has a good reason for everything He does. By loving and helping each other, we can show God that we love Him. God is preparing a family that can all live together peacefully, for an eternity.
People need to communicate with other people. God understood this need for us to talk to other people and so He created Eve and all their offspring. Then He sent down His Spirit in a fleshly form to talk to us, in a form we could relate to.
Do we need to know someone before we can love them?
To truly love someone we must get to know what they are like. Is their heart in the right place? Do we feel safe around them? If not, it is hard to trust them and want to be around them.
If we are to Love God and put our lives completely in His hands, we need to know that we will be safe with Him and to know that there is no power greater than His. The only way to feel this security that we need, is to get to know Him and to trust Him. The only way this can be accomplished is through Godís Word and His involvement in our life experiences.
The Bible is not always easy to understand, just as the parables that Jesus taught were not always easy to understand. That is one of the many reasons God came down in the flesh. The scribes and the pharisees had the written Word of God but they rejected the Love of God. Without the Love, one can never understand the Wisdom of God. Jesus Christ represents the Love of God combined with the Wisdom of God. Once we get to know God, we discover that He is the only one we can truly trust our lives with. Therefore, Christ Jesus should be our first Love (5) before our Love for others. Sometimes in our service to God, we forget and let the people or the works in our lives become more important than Christ Jesus.
(1) Matthew 23:10
And do not be called teachers; for One is your Teacher, the Christ.
(2) John 14:6
Jesus said to him, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.
But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you.
(3) Job 41:34
He beholds every high thing; He is king over all the children of pride."
(4) John 1:12-13
12But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name: 13who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.
But you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you. Now if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he is not His.
1 Peter 1
22 Since you have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit in sincere love of the brethren, love one another fervently with a pure heart, 23having been born again, not of corruptible seed but incorruptible, through the word of God which lives and abides forever, 24because
"All flesh is as grass,
And all the glory of man as the flower of the grass.
The grass withers,
And its flower falls away,
25But the word of the LORD endures forever."
1 John 3
14We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love the brethren. He who does not love his brother abides in death.
(5) Revelation 2:2-4
2"I know your works, your labor, your patience, and that you cannot bear those who are evil. And you have tested those who say they are apostles and are not, and have found them liars; 3and you have persevered and have patience, and have labored for My name's sake and have not become weary.4Nevertheless I have this against you, that you have left your first love.
Seems there is a word for just about every person in this article... the one who is disappointed in the brethren (look unto the TRUTH... your FIRST LOVE), the one who is proud, the one who is weak, the newly born again, etc, etc. Very well organized. Truly inspired of God... and yes, I questioned everything I read, as usual. It is most necessary, especially in this hour. God bless you and honor your obedience by making this article accessible to many, for His will is most definitely outlined in it. Your sister in our Lord, Treava