Are you Saved?
It is obvious that these protocols and methodologies assume that the Holy Spirit is physically and literally present within the user. That presence is given only to those who believe in the Gospel of Jesus Christ that proclaims him as the sole and unique Rescuer of all people who come to him in repentance and confession. Romans 8:5-9 says:
5 For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit. 6 For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. 7 Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. 8 So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God. 9 But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.
The Apostle John, the "Apostle of Love", has this to say in 1 John 3:1-10:
1 Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not. 2 Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is. 3 And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure.
4 Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law. 5 And ye know that he was manifested to take away our sins; and in him is no sin. 6 Whosoever abideth in him sinneth not: whosoever sinneth hath not seen him, neither known him. 7 Little children, let no man deceive you: he that doeth righteousness is righteous, even as he is righteous. 8 He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil. 9 Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God. 10 In this the children of God are manifest, and the children of the devil: whosoever doeth not righteousness is not of God, neither he that loveth not his brother.
I am aware of the current spirit of the world that says (nay, demands) that because all men are equal, that all men are entitled to the same spiritual benefits regardless of their own personal actions, choices, or beliefs. This leads to the view of religious and spiritual belief as an intellectual buffet, with people free to pick and choose what parts of what religious traditions to believe. One of the more popular items in that buffet is the belief in a form of universalism that relies on an indiscriminately loving God that doesn't impose consequences for wrong choices, beliefs, or acts: it seem that every atheist I meet, when asked what they would do if they survived death and appeared before the Judgement Seat of God, proceed to explain how they would appeal to that God's sense of fairness and justice in such a way as to place the blame of their deliberate ignorance on that God. In doing so, they implicitly assume that God is the Judaeo-Christian God, when a simple review of world religions, past and present, reveals that the majority do not assume that their God, or gods, have those attributes. I lay the blame for this attitude on the shoulders of Christian pastors, teachers, and theologians who convey the picture of a God who loves to the point of being as easy and willingly indiscriminate as the whore of Ezekiel 16. I deliberately quoted the above passage from John to emphasize that even "The Apostle of Love" taught that God draws a line between those who believe and those who do not.
But Christians are not solely to blame for this attitude, for I also lay part of the blame on the propagation of Scientific Materialism, which denies that God is the Creator. It is evident from the first and second days of the Genesis Creation that the Judaeo-Christian God was intimately involved with the establishment of natural laws dealing with electro-magnetism and gravitation, so if there is a part of human experience more resistant to the "pick and choose" mentality than mathematics and the hard sciences, I am hard pressed to name it. It seems to me that a God with such a "hard-boiled" attitude toward the physical realm would continue to be "hard-boiled" when it comes to spiritual matters. That's why the content and approach of this website is to treat spiritual matters "after the manner" of scientists and engineers.
Thus, if you came here thinking that this methodology is another item on a spiritual buffet that you could use to eliminate some socially embarassing habit without the need for clearing your plate of everything else not of Christianity and confining yourself to the Christian hot bar, I have to inform you that your assumption that a spiritual buffet exists is greatly mistaken: even fools know that if they want to lose weight while at a real buffet, they have to confine themselves to the salad bar. Welcome to the REAL world.
However, the fact that you are here, reading this far without being offended to the point of clicking away from this website, is proof that the Holy Spirit is preveniently at work in you. By "preveniently at work", I mean that He is in your heart temporarily and with a limited objective, which is to get you saved.
Having said that, I want to warn you against indulging in crass opportunism. That Holy Spirit's presence is temporarily in you because God loves you and wants to turnt that temporary presenece into an actual, real, permanent, and indwelling relationship within you. However, you would be mistaken if you interpret that love as being so desperate that you would allow yourself the liberty of making "bargains" with the intent of getting something for nothing: "I'll believe if-" followed by some demand for a miracle or active work in your life puts you on the same level as Don Juan promising to marry some desperate female, providing she performs for him that marriage act before marriage that is supposed to be done after marriage. The proper answer a proper lady would give to such a "Romeo" would be "don't hand me no lines and keep your hands to yourself."
At the same time, I want to encourage you to cooperate with that temporary presence and follow through to that declaration of faith that constitutes your part in the process of salvation, for while the doctrine of Symbiosis doesn't add anything to how salvation is obtained, it does change the "balance sheet" you are mentally filling out at this very moment. Nobody, least of all God, is offended that you are doing a cost-benefit analysis regarding a decision to follow Jesus and become his disciple. Jesus himself urged people to count the cost of discipleship, using practical illustrations like a king computing the odds of winning a war before going to battle, and a man evaluating his finances before he builds a tower. Asking "Is symbiosis real? Will it work for me the way it worked for Gerald? Is it worth it?" are very legitimate questions to raise, and only a fool would ignore those previous failures to live a Christian life they experienced after similar professions of faith in the past.
And I can say with confidence that it will work for you, and I cite as proof the fact that you are seriously considering becoming a Christian while you are reading this essay. The fact that you are giving it serious thought is because the Holy Spirit is literally within you, working with you in your mind to think such thoughts. After decades of research, we know that thoughts in the mind are physically mediated by chemical changes happening to neurotransmitters in the synapses between brain cells, and we know that electro-stimulation of individual brain cells of patients that are awake and aware during brain surgery causes vivid recall of memories. It stands to reason and the laws of physics that a change in thoughts is physically mediated by changes in those chemical changes in those neurotransmitters. The only way the Holy Spirit can affect your thoughts is by making physical changes in the chemicals in your brain. According to the strict interpretation of Scientific Materialism, this is a miracle because a physical change has been caused by a non-physical (i.e. spiritual) entity. It doesn't matter that the scale of the miracle is so small: Physicists specializing in the Copenhagen school of Quantum Mechanics do not hesitate to use the fact of uncertainty at far smaller scales to make proclamations about free will, determinism, and multiple universes at a macroscopic scale. They justify such pronouncements because it is, after all, "just a matter of scale". Quite so: the difference between affecting chemicals to affect your thoughts and enabling you, by faith, to move mountains, is also "just a matter of scale". Just count yourself fortunate that you only need a brain to think with and introspect upon to discover this fact without resorting to the construction and operation of multi-billion dollar particle accellerators.
In short, the Holy Spirit is already doing, but on a limited scale and for a limited period time in pursuit of a limited objective, that which He promises to do permanently within you. Don't make any presumptions that He will go beyond those limits to further convince you, although you should count yourself lucky and fortunate if He does. However, He has already proven He can affect some of your thoughts, so you should conclude that He can do it for any of your thoughts, with the limitation being your willingness to let Him affect your thoughts. Let me put it this way: a smart girl sure isn't gonna jump into bed with a guy before she gets that vow and that ring from him, but a smart girl (like my cousin-in-law Renee advised her daughters) ought to kiss good enough before she gets that vow and ring so that guy has good reason to believe he will have a great time in that bed after she gets that vow and ring. Prevenient grace is a mere foretaste, an hors d'ouvre if you will, of the banquet being laid out to entice you to accept and partake.
Prior to March of 2008, I'd have told you that Christianity provided easy salvation, but was a difficult lifestyle to live. Part of that difficulty was the sense that, although I could get wisdom from God, it felt as if I was listening on a handset with him on the other end a billion lightyears and several dimensions away, giving me encouragements and advice, but unwilling to sully his oh-so delicate holiness if he got close to me and my sinful environment. He felt like a great american philanthropist who wants praise and credit for endowing a foundation that does do good things for the unfortunate, but who would rather not personally meet any of the peasants his foundation helps, preferring to stay in his walled-in mansion sipping tea from Ming China cups, nose in the air and pinky finger perfectly extended. Perfectly, completely, and entirely unbothered. After April of 2008, with the realization of symbiosis, the numbers and figures started coming up radically different. I came to love and adore a God who, in the person of the Holy Spirit, gets so literally and intimately involved with me that using marriage as a metaphor and model of Symbiosis is woefully inadequate. I now wholeheartedly and enthusiastically recommend Christianity, not only as a religion, but as a total lifestyle, provided it is lived symbiotically. Simply put, you will not find a human being who would love you as wildly, radically, enthusiastically, devotedly, and completely as the Holy Spirit does once He and you join up and start talking.
Salvation is as simple as confessing Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, and believing that He died to deliver you from your sins, and that God raised him from the dead. If you do not recall making any such confession, and feel sure you are not saved, but want to be, then go here or here on the web for details. However, I recommend interacting with a pastor or believer for this important step. In fact, I highly doubt that you are feeling and thinking the way you do without God, by His Holy Spirit, having made provision for a Christian to be involved in your life that you know you can go to with the assurance that your desire to be saved will not only be respected, but rejoiced over.
Now, I want to speak to those of you who DO recall making such a confession, but still feel that, somehow, you are not saved. If you were very young, your confession may not have been made with a full awareness of what was required and what you were doing. If you feel you are saved because you were baptized as an infant, then I highly doubt that you are saved, and urge you to do so consciously and with a full awareness of what you are doing.
However, if you do recall making such a confession, and still feel that you are not saved, then you are probably confusing your Christian salvation with your Christian success. You are either married or you are not, but just because you have a poor marriage doesn't mean you are not married. What you probably need is to rededicate your life, confess your sins, and declare your intention to live life as God directs you.
Note that I said, "declare your intention to live life as God directs you", not "live a good Christian life". Don't confuse your efforts to live as a Christian before coming to this website, and the efforts you will need to make to live the Christian life symbiotically. The former is trying to do it yourself, based on your own power. I've been there, done that, and have the scars to prove it. The latter is cooperating with God as He is manifested within you, using a systematic methodology to effect that cooperation. I'm now there, doing it now, and have the joy and love to prove it.
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