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A POSSIBLE STUMBLING BLOCK TO MAN'S SEARCH FOR MEANING

Outside of God's plan of redemption, any search for the meaning of life is futile. Science has no answers for anyone searching in the areas of spirit, soul or Christian faith.

Mankind, in a broad sense has seldom seen the need to rely on God for anything, except in times of personal tragedy or loss. For us at Beyond Armageddon it is always a source of wonder, to hear a person cry out to God in the midst of some tragedy in their life, who otherwise never give God a second thought.

God why me? Or Why us? Why God! Why! Why!

It's a reminder that deep down in the soul of every person, there is planted a seed from God our Creator, which although remaining hidden and unfruitful most of the time, retains a spark of life which is revealed when we face personal grief. Why else would anyone cry out to a God they either don't have any time for, or profess doesn't exists. It would be quite laughable, if not so sad and serious.

Throughout history, man has mostly rebelled against God, choosing to ignore His guidance; opting instead to go his own way, believing his wisdom sufficient &/or superior enough to see him survive and prosper on his own. Fortunately for some, it's at the point of realization as to the futility of such a task, that the truth in the person of Jesus Christ arrives in time to guide us through salvation's door and set us free.

“There is a way which seems right to a man, but it's end is the way of death” (Prov 14:12)
Of course this text refers to a spiritual death, which in turn means eternal separation from God.

To deal objectively with this subject, we need to touch briefly on the 'soul' of man, and what defines it.
(For anyone seeking a fuller understanding of man's soul and spirit, see article in this blog section titled: “The soul and spirit of man – a biblical perspective.

The creation of man, arguably represents the most awesome and miraculous act in all of God's creation. One only need study the intricate complexities found in the human body to instantly recognize the omnipotence and omniscience of God the creator. For more on the human body, DNA etc, refer to our blog article “Why everything is the way it is”

We are conceived and born with a human spirit (God breathed which gives us life) together with a soul, and we exist in a physical flesh body. The complete human is therefore made up of spirit, soul and body, in that order of significance so to speak. We are first and foremost spirit beings, which is the way God created us, in His image.

“Then God said, “Let us make man in Our image, according to our likeness........” (Gen 1: 26)

Now it's important to understand that the real you, that part of you which gives you feelings, emotions, the ability to think and make choices, develop personality etc, and indeed, even the ability to worship the creator, is bound up in the soul and functions in total harmony with the human spirit.

The soul of man, along with his spirit is the supernatural, immaterial part of man comprised of our mind, our will and our emotions. The soul, like the spirit, being immaterial can neither be seen or touched. Further; Once man's soul is birthed in a created being, it exists beyond physical death into eternity, and this is where we begin to encounter the real meaning of life, the purpose for which God created us in the first place.

Contrary to the belief of many, physical death is not the end of life.
The death of our mortal bodies, could be said to usher in the beginning of Life eternal.

In the context of life everlasting, “eternity”, the few short years we live our human existence on earth can be likened to a grain of sand on all the beaches and deserts of the world, or a single star among the countless quadrillions to be found in the heavens. So for anyone to believe that this is all there is to life, without any divine purpose is simply inconceivable to the believer.

The three score years and ten, or however many year He grants you, are purposed by God to redeem you from your sin life, teach you His ways, draw you into a loving family relationship with Him and other believers, to glorify/magnify His name and prepare you for life eternal in His presence.

The challenge for you therefore, is that during this short life on earth, you must choose where you will spend eternity; in heaven with God or hell with the Devil (Satan), because once your physical body dies, it is too late. If you choose to ignore the need to consider your options, you are condemning yourself automatically to an eternity in hell, as the scripture clearly reveals:

“For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved. He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God” (John 3: 17-18)

If you care about your future, you must apply the God given faculties of your soul (mind, will and emotion) and engage the witness in your spirit to discover the truth and make the decision before this happens. It is for this reason that Paul encourages you, not to delay the decision, for who knows what tomorrow may bring:

“........Behold, now is the acceptable time; behold, now is the day of salvation” (2 Cor 6:2)

It is axiomatic that the term “meaning of life” is accepted as explaining the purpose for man's existence, and hope for the future, especially beyond the grave.

Regarding the subject of life after death, outside of Christianity, the predominant belief is in reincarnation in some form or other, especially the Eastern religions and cults, or there is nothing after death. It ends.

There are groups such as Atheists and Agnostics who, even though they either don't believe in God or doubt the existence of a deity of any kind, must be included as a belief system. To them there is no eternal meaning to life. One is born, lives their life and one day inevitably face death, and after this, nothing. No after life or post death expectations whatsoever.

It is likewise axiomatic therefore, that a faith system which offers a “Meaning of Life”doctrine to it's adherents, can only achieve faithful acceptance of such doctrine, if they are convinced or believe by faith, that the source is God or a god/deity with supernatural powers, notwithstanding the fact that the doctrine of reincarnation is not discussed anywhere in the bible, and is a false doctrine birthed in pagan demonic influences, inspired by Satan (the devil) to deceive.

As unbelievable as it may seem, most people may never have read or heard anything of the battle which has raged over the souls of man between God and Satan ever since Adam disobeyed God in the Garden of Eden, but some knowledge of this is critical to understanding the subject we are dealing with.

When you understand that Satan's ultimate goal is to show himself to be more powerful than God Almighty, the Creator, by preventing people being saved by the power of His gospel message, you can begin to comprehend the need to understand the devil's schemes, just how the Devil intends to achieve his objective; by attacking man's soul. That realm of his mind, his will and his emotions.

The earth as we know it, is for now in the hands of Satan, having been given the authority by God Himself in order, among other things, to ultimately prove to the world that God is all powerful and loving; so when God is ready in accordance with His timetable, God will act against Satan and strip him of all temporary power and influence granted him over His creation.

“But even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing, whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ......” (2 Cor 4: 3-4)

“…..you would rejoice because I said, 'I (Jesus)am going to the Father,' for My Father is greater than I. And now I have told you before it comes, that when it does come to pass, you may believe.
I will no longer talk much with you, for the ruler of this world (Satan) is coming,....”(John 14: 28-30)

“Little children, let no one deceive you. He who practices righteousness is righteous, just as He (the Lord) is righteous. He who sins is of the devil, for the devil has sinned from the beginning. For this purpose the son of God(Jesus Christ) was manifested (on earth) that He might destroy the works of the devil.” (1 John 3: 7-8)

So we come to the mind of man, the battle ground, where the Devil rages against God, to destroy His power and authority over His creation.

The scriptures in the Bible refer to the many names ascribed to the devil, one of which is; “Thief “
In one of His teaching sessions with His disciples, the Lord was illustrating to them that He is the Good Shepherd, and how the sheep ( believers) will know Him and ignore the voice of Satan, and the Lord said;

“The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy; I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly” (John 10: 10)

God, in this verse of scripture is telling us that Satan, besides being a liar and deceiver, is also a thief, so be on your guard, because he has plans to rob you of your joy and hope in God, to kill any ambition you may have to serve and honor God, and to destroy the mortal life you live now, plus the prospect of life eternal in God's eternal kingdom. .

The devil uses every deception and lie possible to keep mankind in darkness.... captive in his lust after the flesh in his corrupt mind and worldly disposition. But his primary target in his battle against God, is the souls of the saints, the “born again” believers. If the devil can turn one of these away from their faith and back into the world, he can seek to claim a victory over God, at least in his own mind.

“Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you. Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world.”
(1 Pet 5: 6-9)

At some time in your life, no doubt you've heard of people being described as brainy, and understood the reference was of someone very intelligent, smart, well educated or naturally talented. But it is interesting to note three things about this claim:

  • that the brain is a physical part of the body, and not part of the soul;
  • all of these admirable attributes or qualities are linked to the mind, not the brain;
  • there is not one reference to the human brain to be found in the bible, whereas there are hundreds to be found regarding the mind.

So although we often hear people being referred to as being brainy, I am yet to be convinced the human brain can function without a sound mind. I cannot find any evidence to support the brain's capacity to think for itself in a reasoning sense, so a person can rightly be described as being smart or intelligent, for in my opinion, it is a misnomer to describe anyone as brainy, when applied to the concept of a person's intelligence or the capacity to think and reason.

That we are each more than our physical bodies is evident from the fact that we hold ideas and thoughts that are not physical and therefore cannot be part of the physical brain. Our thoughts are not the result of stimuli from the physical world around us. A common misconception is the idea that we think in pictures: in our mind we see a cow, or a tree, or a car, etc. But this last sentence has a number of words for which there is no physical object to picture. What is the picture of “common,” or “misconception,” or “idea,” or “think,” or “mind”?
To the ancient assertion, “I think, therefore I am,” must be added, “My thoughts are non material; therefore, so am I.” That being the case, where do these thoughts reside, what form do they take, and what is their origin? These questions, for which materialism has no answer, must be seriously and honestly faced if we are to understand ourselves, and whether our life has meaning at all.

I have personally encountered many well educated, intelligent people during my lifetime, who notwithstanding their obvious accute intellect and training, have failed to grasp the substance of the spiritual dimension of their being. It has been particularly noticeable in people with engineering or scientific and academic backgrounds.
Many have difficulty grasping the concept of faith, which of course brings the spiritual concept into focus.
One could call it the “doubting Thomas syndrome”. If they cannot see it, touch it, smell it, hear it or taste it, there is no meaning to it. But of course to know God is to live by faith which for most of them is foreign.
None of the science disciplines (other than mathematics perhaps) can account for faith or matters of the spirit. It is simply beyond the scope of Science to deal with either.

So it is, that we contend the 'mind' of these talented well educated individuals, trained as they are to only operate in the realm of their primary senses, which represents a stumbling block to the reality of their spirit being and faith, which I've always thought is like a spiritual unbillical chord connection to God.

“Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen” (Heb 11: 1)

“.......without faith is is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.” (Heb 11: 6)

When confronted with the Gospel of Jesus Christ, their initial response can vary. If not outright rejection, then some have a willingness to challenge it on the basis of their perceived superior intellect and knowledge.
But in the main their rebellion against God is quickly manifest, as they often show no enthusiasm to even discuss the matter, preferring rather to indicate how enlightened they have become through their “New Age” associations and teachings, and how liberating it is for them not to have to worry about sin, and all that other “religious stuff” that only hinders their desire to please themselves and do what they like, without feeling guilty. Living by the doctrine of “If it feels right or good, then that is all that matters”

So, some evidence in support of our proposition that the mind can be a stumbling block to man's search for meaning exists, as man, because of his intellect and secular training, (in conjunction with the Devil's help) rejects the only source of knowledge and wisdom from whence the truth can be discovered and understood; God and His Word.

People who reject God in their mind like this, are consciously or unconsciously siding with the Devil and his lies: that man can be like a god himself. He doesn't need God; that man has the intelligence and the mind power to be whatever he wants; That the concept of sin and man's need of a Savior, is just religious “mumbo-jumbo”, that the world has moved on, that modern man does not need the bible's fairy tales.

The devil has been whispering lies like these into the ear of man ever since Adam's fall, and leading those who believe them to destruction, and an eternity with him in hell.

Now the serpent was more cunning than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said to the woman, “Has God indeed said, 'You shall not eat of every tree on the garden?”
And the woman said to the serpent, “We may eat the fruit of the trees of the garden;
but the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God has said, “You shall not eat it, nor shall you touch it, lest you die”
And the serpent (the devil) said to the woman, “You will not surely die.”
”For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil. (Gen 3: 1-5)

The mind of man is corrupt from birth because of Satan's rebellion against God, and for that reason, out of Love for His creation, God sent His Son, Jesus Christ, to redeem the souls of all who would believe.

For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son; that whoever believes in Him, should not perish but have everlasting life. (John 3: 16)

An uncommon exception to the many examples alluded to here, there have been some renowned examples down through history of scientists & scholars, strident in their open rebellion against God, who in their applied efforts to disprove the bible and the reality of God and His gospel message, have in fact been converted totally to faith in Christ in the midst of their schollarly endeavors, as the truth of the scriptures has been revealed to them under the power of the Holy Spirit.

We can recall one very powerful example; a Russian mathematician, named Ivan Panin, who at the age of 22 emigrated to the USA. He later, as a 'nihilist' set about to disprove the Christian Gospel, but in the process discovered the truth and was converted to the faith, and was used mightily by God in the promotion of the scriptures, (much like the apostle Paul) until his death at age 88 in 1942. He was regarded as the Father of bible numerics, and among the many works published in his name, two stand out:

The Structure of the Bible: A Proof of the Verbal Inspiration of Scripture, &
Inspiration of the Scriptures Scientifically Demonstrated (Letter to the New York Sun)

As ongoing testament to the grace and power of God, many others went on to build powerful post conversion ministries, bringing glory to His name.

So hopefully, you can begin to comprehend, not only how the mind can be a stumbling block to understanding the true meaning of life, (that through faith in Jesus Christ, we can be adopted into God's family, to spend eternity in His presence) but, also who is responsible for it. (The devil)

The good news is of course that God is omnipotent, omniscient and omnipresent, and His word, in combination with His indwelling Holy spirit, is a powerful weapon in the hands of His servants who respond to His call to share the Gospel . The following texts are but two examples of the many to be found in the scriptures which bear witness to this:

“For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes.......” ( Rom 1:16)

“For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit , and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart” (Heb 4: 12)

It cannot be overstated, the need for a rational mind, so let's discover what additional light the Bible can shine on this issue, and how God deals with the rebellious mind;

“........He (The devil) was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him......” (John 8:44)
Many Christians are being told that they must shut down their rational mind in order to be "more spiritual." But, this isn't God's way. Scripture declares that man's sinful nature rules his carnal mind, nullifying any mental effort to obey God's law or attain true spiritual knowledge of God.
So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin” (Rom 7:14-25) and,
"For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be" "(Rom 8:6,7).

Further hindrances manifest when scripture reveals that Satan uses the mind to keep men in their fallen, sinful state:
“…..whose minds the god of this age [Satan] has blinded who do not believe, lest the light of the Gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine on them." (2 Cor 4:4)

In (Rom 1: 18-32) God reveals there is no excuse for man's suppression of the truth of God for all the evidence is manifest in them and in creation, and by not honoring God, men become futile in their thoughts and their foolish hearts are darkened, leading them to worship the creature [Satan] as god. Professing to be wise they become fools. This text further reveals that men who don't consider it worthwhile to retain the true knowledge of God, are given over by God to reprobate minds and vile passions.

Paul (2 Thes 2: 9-12) likewise warns of strong delusion of the mind;
The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders, and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie, that they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness. (2 Thess 2: 9-12)

Such unrighteousness often leads people into fellowship with ungodly spirits, which can result in belief of false teachings and spiritual deception. Anyone who fellowships with "heavenly" beings other than the one true God has a unregenerate mind which puffs him up with idle and idolatrous notions.
(Col 2:18) warns of this very thing: "Let no man defraud you of your reward, taking delight in false humility and worship of angels, intruding into those things which he has not seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind"

Any person who's mind is subject to the Spirit of God is humble and subdued in all his ways:
(Phil 3:18-19) reminds us that those who "set their mind on earthly things" are "enemies of the cross of Christ." and (1 Tim 4:1-2) warns about false teachers, declaring: “...... that in latter times (that is now) some will give heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons, speaking lies in hypocrisy, having their own conscience seared with a hot iron”

These examples taken from God's word are but a sample to illustrate how important our mind is in God's scheme of things, so that because of this;
At the risk of being accused of repeating myself, it should now be clearer just what a stumbling block the mind can be for the unsaved in their search for the truth, when the only place to find the true “meaning of life” is in the creator's life manual, the Word of God......To search anywhere else is less than futile.
It should also be remembered that the devil is always scheming to prevent man from discovering the truth.

Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. (1 Pet 5:8)
An inconvenient truth for many is that the real meaning of life, ( ie God's plan for mankind) has very little to do with this world, except as a stepping stone to eternity. This of course reflects the critical part that our present existence/life on earth plays in the context of our chosen eternal destiny.
To fully comprehend this point, one needs to understand that, no human being can die other than in a physical sense . The spirit and soul live on forever into eternity. This of course means that you, the real you, can never die; and is something you cannot control in any way, shape, or form. We are dealing with God's domain here, so whatever He decrees is law and that's the end of it. Hence our concern for the eternal destiny of people everywhere who have yet to give serious consideration to the question; the need for everyone before they die physically to decide where they will spend eternity, which, depending on chance or destiny, will begin for some, today or tomorrow: Not much time if this includes you.

IN REALITY, GOD IS WAITNG FOR YOU TO OPEN YOUR DOOR FOR HIM, RIGHT NOW.
“As many as I love I rebuke and chasten. Therefore be zealous and repent. Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me. To him who overcomes I will grant to sit with me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne. He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says....” (Rev 3: 19-22)

Only when man's spirit is joined with God's Holy Spirit can the real meaning of Life be totally understood, and the fulfillment of the reality of this is brought about by the renewing of your mind which commences at the point of the new birth experience. For without the help of the Holy Spirit, the true power, knowledge and wisdom embraced by the scriptures is foolishness and will remain a mystery.

“For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.” (1 Cor 1:18)
(Rom 12:20) exhorts, "And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God."

In (John 14:26) Jesus promised his disciples, "But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in My name, He shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you."
(1 Corinthians 2:13-14, 16) describes the truth-filled wisdom that comes from God:

"These things we also speak, not in the words which man's wisdom teaches, but which the Holy Spirit teaches, comparing spiritual things with spiritual. But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.... For “Who has known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ."

Accordingly, a Christian, born again of the Spirit of God, has the spiritual capacity to test, judge, and discern spiritual truth as it pertains to the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the Word of God. The renewed mind now cooperates with God, to bring about full revelation of God's wise council.

"For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh; but those who live according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit." (Romans 8:5)

The occultist or spiritualist must bypass the mind by shutting down his thinking processes in order to reach a passive, mind numbing, trance like state, at which point contact with a demon spirit is made. One way of doing this is through a mind numbing mantra; repeating the same word, or phrase over and over again. There is no such practice found in Scripture. In fact the word of God expressly warns against the dangers of being involved in such occult practices.

It is worth repeating once more, that unless man is attuned to God and his word, his efforts to discover the true meaning of life, in his own strength, are at best futile.

The big mistake man has always made, to his ongoing destruction, is to reckon himself smarter and wiser than God, and while ever he continues to think this way, with the devil's help, it is his MIND, that will continue to prove a stumbling block to the spiritual fulfillment he craves.

“There is a way which seems right to a man, but it's end is the way of death” (Prov 14:12)

May God richly bless you in your search and His spirit guide you in all truth and wisdom, that you may abide in His Love and enter into God's rest, which we all so desperately need.

If you would like to learn more about God's offer of salvation and how to receive it, please click here and here

God's merciful promise to you right now is to be found in: (Matt 7: 7)

“Ask and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock and it will be opened unto you.”

But don't pay any attention to what the devil may be whispering in your ear right now. He just wants to steal from you the wonderful blessings that God has in store for you.
Simply engage your sound mind and reach into God, because you probably suspect and know by now, deep down inside, He is real and is the only hope you have.

If you need some help, or just want to discuss what you are feeling, please feel free to click on the contact tab and fill out the form. We will endeavor to respond immediately, but if we can't, we'll be back to you as soon as is humanly possible. That is our commitment to you and to God.......and finally:

“...... if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed” (John 8: 36)

“Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage”
(Gal 5: 1)

“The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is long-suffering toward us, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance” (2 Pet 3:9)

We pray earnestly that the God of all glory and grace will ultimately guide you to the place set aside for you in heaven, and may He richly bless your soul and search for the true meaning of life. Amen.

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About Beyond-Armageddon

This is a End Time ministry focused on the individual..To take you by the hand and lovingly lead you down God's pathway to salvation.....so that along the way He can reveal to you His heart full of love, grace, and mercy, which He promises to pour out for you personally, while time still remains. Provided of course that in return, you put trust in  and believe in the Lord Jesus Christ