Summary: We have to believe if we are goingto be.
Michael Josephson writes that character counts.
“Let’s face it: It’s not easy to become a person of character. It takes a good heart,
but it also requires wisdom to know right from wrong and the discipline to do right even
when it’s costly, inconvenient, or difficult. Becoming a person of character is a lifelong quest
to be better. A person of character values honesty and integrity and pays whatever price is
needed to be worthy of trust, earning the pride of family and friends, and self-respect. A person of
character plays fair even when others don’t and values no achievement unless it was attained
with honor. A person of character has strong convictions, yet avoids self-righteousness.
A person of character believes in the inherent dignity of all people and treats everyone with respect,
even those whose ideas and ideologies evoke strong disagreement. A person of character deals with
criticism constructively and is self-confident enough to take good advice, to admit and learn from
mistakes, to feel and express genuine remorse, and to apologize graciously. A person of character
knows what’s important, sacrifices now for later, is in control of attitudes and actions, overcomes
negative impulses, and makes the best of every situation. A person of character willingly faces fears
and tackles unpleasant tasks. A person of character is consistently and self-consciously kind and
empathetic, giving generously without concern for reward. A person of character feels and expresses
gratitude freely and frequently. A person of character is not defeated by failure or dissuaded by
disappointment. A person of character seeks true happiness in living a life of purpose and meaning,
placing a higher value on significance than success.”
We must believe to receive the Light JN 1:9-13
John introduces Jesus as "the light". That shines in darkness, to which John bore witness,
who gives light to every man. John declares not everyone was willing to receive the light.
Even His own people as a whole rejected Him. But for those who did receive Him, they were
truly blessed! The same remains true today. Many people do not receive Jesus. Missing out on the
wonderful blessings He offers! Why do people not receive Christ? How can we be sure to receive
Him, and the blessings He offers as "The Light"?
I. We see that MANY DID NOT RECEIVE THE LIGHT. WHO DID NOT RECEIVE THE LIGHT?
1. The world in general. Even though He gives light to every man! Even though the world was made
through Him! 2. His own people in particular. He had come into His own land, His chosen people.
The ones He had made His own from the time of Abraham. He came to His own people. It was
through this people that God had given the Bible. He had promised a Savior. They had much but it
did not bring them to believe in what God wanted for them.
2. WHY didn’t they receive the Light? They refused to know Him. Even His own brothers at first,
though they did after His resurrection. Knowledge often rear disrespect: "A prophet has no honor
in his own country. There are other reasons provided by John in his gospel. Some loved darkness
more than light. Some were afraid of what others thought. Some were misinformed of the facts.
Some were hardened by their traditions. Some loved the praise of men. For similar reasons today,
many people do not receive Jesus. From a newspaper the Los Angeles Times gave story that show
the Catholic Church believes that person can be saved without the truth of the Gospel. Pope John
Paul II said, “All who live a just life will be saved, even if they do not believe in Jesus Christ and the
Roman Catholic Church.” He said “The gospel teaches us that those who live in accordance to with
the Beatitudes, poor in the spirit, the pure in heart, those who bear lovingly the sufferings of life
will enter God’s kingdom.” So there are many who reject the Bible’s teaching that we can only be
saved through Jesus Christ, They believe that the heathen will be saved if they just live good lives as
is told by the pope’s quote above. As long as they are sincere it does not matter what they believe.
In the book Ecumenical jihad, Peter Kreeft writes “there are Bubbhists Hindus, Confucians, Muslims,
atheists and Jews in heaven; sincerity and goodness are the ticket to God’s kingdom, not believing
in the Christ of the Gospel. Through innate goodness, they naturally reason themselves into a
knowledge of God, please him and earn their salvation, whether they ever set eyes on the Bible in
their lives or not.” The Bible states clearly, Jesus said, “I am the way the truth and the life. NO One
Come to the Father except through me. “There is salvation in any other, for there is not other name