“Redeemed” – “A Personal Note From Dad”

This article is part [part not set] of 14 in the series Redeemed

My Dear Friend,
This book would be incomplete without this personal note. I wanted to close it with a few
thoughts from my heart to yours.

Right now, HEAVEN AND HELL seem a long way off. Even the word “tomorrow” is not too realistic. We live TODAY. When I was a young minister, I brought a coffin (a real coffin) into the church building for a Sunday morning service. It was a TERRIFIC ILLUSTRATION. It was empty and it represented many truths.

1. IT ILLUSTRATED LIFE, for the coffin, you and I will be in, IS EMPTY.

2. IT REPRESENTED SALVATION, for the “empty coffin” still offers us the invitation of Christ. “Behold I stand at the door and knock. Open the door and I will come in and abide with you” (Revelation 3:20).

3. IT PORTRAYS TIME, remaining. Time to say “YES”! Time for the fallen Christian to repent (Revelation 3:14-20). Time yet to have your sins washed away! (Acts 22:16).
“Just as people are destined to die once, and after that to face judgment” (Hebrews 9:27).

The (your) coffin is still empty, and Judgment is not yet. When will that day be? When will the coffin be filled? TODAY IS THE DAY OF SALVATION – YOUR SALVATION. Say “Yes” to God! Crown Jesus as your Lord. Judgment will be no more, for heaven will be your home.

Love you,
Jack ExumJack and Ann Exum

Jack and Ann Exum



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“Redeemed” – Lesson Thirteen – “Gehenna” “The Final Place Of The Wicked”

This article is part [part not set] of 14 in the series Redeemed

“GEHENNA” is a Greek word which is all but GOOD! I don’t like it! I don’t like reading about it! I encourage all to avoid it (and everyone can avoid it by God’s grace). If heaven is a real place, so is hell. If heaven is NOT real, then one cannot believe in Hell. You can’t have one and not the other.

“Gehenna” came from the name of a valley outside Jerusalem, owned by Hinnom (Hebrew). Eventually this valley became a sewage dumping place (or ‘land fill’) for city refuse. It burned day and night, worms and maggots devoured the rotting flesh of animals and even the poor and wretched of mankind.

Jesus chose to use this word to describe the “place” for the Devil and his angels. He used the word 12 times and included those who hate their brother (Matthew 5:22). Jesus condemned the city of Capernaum and said, “And you, Capernaum, will you be lifted to the heavens? No, you will go down to Hades (Hell)(KJV). For if the miracles that were performed in you had been performed in Sodom, it would have remained to this day” (Matthew 11:23).

Jesus also said, “If your hand or your foot causes you to stumble, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to enter life maimed or crippled than to have two hands or two feet and be thrown into eternal fire. 9 And if your eye causes you to stumble, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to enter life with one eye than to have two eyes and be thrown into the fire of hell” (Matthew 18:8-9).

Jesus spoke of this place as a place where the worms do not die, and fire does not go out. It is a place where there is “weeping and gnashing of teeth”. Hell is a place AWAY from the presence of God! Jesus said, “I tell you, my friends, do not be afraid of those who kill the body and after that can do no more. 5 But I will show you whom you should fear: Fear him who, after your body has been killed, has authority to throw you into hell. Yes, I tell you, fear him” (Luke 12:4-5).

Why on earth would anyone joke about “HELL.” It’s no joke, it’s not funny, and you do not want to go there… not even for a “minute.” Jesus offers joy, peace, forgiveness, grace, love, blessings, as well as HEAVEN…. Why be lost? You don’t need to be lost…

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“Redeemed” – Lesson Twelve – “Heaven Bound”

This article is part [part not set] of 14 in the series Redeemed

“Do not let your hearts be troubled. You believe in God ; believe also in me. 2 My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you?” (John 14:1-2)

The Revelation written by John describes Heaven more fully… “Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth…” “He will wipe every tear from their eyes… There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away…” “I am making everything new…” “Come I will show you the bride, the wife of the Lamb…” “… the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are it’s temple…” “Then
the angel showed me the river of the waters of life…” “No longer will there be any curse…” (Revelation 21 and 22).

HEAVEN IS A PLACE – Jesus said, “I go and prepare a place for you…” (John 14:1-2). Shut your eyes and picture your house, the one you live in now. IT IS A PLACE. Literal or not, heaven is a place prepared for the redeemed… ALL OF THEM. If you think this earth is beautiful, from the wonder of the morning light, or the glow of the sunset across the horizon… just try and imagine how beautiful heaven must be. Hard to imagine… but Heaven is real… a PLACE.

HEAVEN IS A PERSON – God will be there…. Jesus will be there…. The Holy Spirit will be there…. IN PERSON. All the redeemed from all of history will be there! The Apostles, Prophets, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Moses, and on and on you can go… ALL WILL BE THERE! How? I don’t know. I just want to be THERE. (Dad sold what he called, “the old homestead” after his Mom and Dad passed away.) He said, “It just wasn’t the same without them being THERE.” I had the same feelings when Mom and Dad passed away in 2010. It was so very sad, so very hard to even go through their house, their things which were no longer needed. I wanted to ‘pick it all up’ and hold it… but they were not THERE. But, I know where they are… waiting for that special day of reunion. HEAVEN IS A PERSON.

HEAVEN IS ME – I’m going there. How do I know? Is it because I am so good? No! Is it because I followed Him perfectly? Certainly No! It is because of His grace, and His PROMISE. I stand on those promises, and in His grace. I sing about those promises, and one day when the coffin is filled, I will realize and receive those promises. “He is faithful that promised!” (I Corinthians 1:9). Heaven is me – in prospect and promise. Glory to God, and by His grace! (It’s not over… yet!)

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“Redeemed” – Lesson Eleven – “Today Is The Day Of Your Salvation”

This article is part [part not set] of 14 in the series Redeemed

“Redeemed – how I love to proclaim it!” Just the first few words of a tremendous song written by Francis Jane Crosby. This song inspired Dad to write this study, and even though some thoughts are added by myself, the over-all tenure of the lessons are as Dad intended. “REDEEMED,” from the Greek word “agoraso,” and pertains to “the market,” where one would go to purchase an item.

Recently I (dad) stood by the grave of FRANCIS JANE CROSBY, the author of that marvelous song. She went on to write, “I know I shall see in His beauty, the King in who’s law I delight; who lovingly guardeth my footsteps, and giveth me songs in the night… REDEEMED!”

Paul declares, “For he says, “In the time of my favor I heard you, and in the day of salvation I helped you.” I tell you, now is the time of God’s favor, now is the day of salvation” (2 Corinthians 6:2).

Now, take out your calendar… look for “yesterday” or “tomorrow”. Take out your dictionary and look for “Would’a,” “could’a,” “should’a,” and you won’t find these either.

Giving your life to Jesus, is strictly… a PERSONAL DECISION… YOUR DECISION. Accepting and trusting in Jesus is not something your loved ones can do for you. It is your decision. It affects everything and more… it affects your eternity. The express purpose of this little book is to lead those looking for a personal relationship with Jesus, to do just that. Please, DO NOT IGNORE – POSTPONE – DELAY this!

Jesus “paid the price” which was demanded to purchase you “in the market” and a new life is waiting for you if you want it.

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“Redeemed” – Lesson Ten – “Be Filled With The Holy Spirit”

This article is part [part not set] of 14 in the series Redeemed

This chapter is as important as any of the others… The final instruction concerning the
Holy Spirit is given in Ephesians 5:18, “Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit.”
While drinking wine to the excess will ‘take away one’s mind’, and Paul prohibits this, he on the other hand, encourages, “If you are going to be filled with (controlled by) anything, be filled with (controlled by) the Spirit.”

Drunkenness is a work of the flesh (Galatians 5:19). Too much wine (drunkenness) leads to ‘works of the flesh’. Yet as far as I can tell, one cannot get “too much” of
the Holy Spirit, which leads to more and more fruit of the Spirit.

Paul says, “Don’t “quench” the Spirit’s influence in your life (I Thessalonians 5:19). “And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption” (Ephesians 4:30). If I am not to quench the Spirit or grieve the Spirit, what am I to do? “BE FILLED WITH THE SPIRIT.” This is not a ‘suggestion’, and it is not really an ‘option’ for the Christian. This is not an ‘alternative lifestyle.’ This is a COMMAND.

The reason why this is an important chapter is, because we are NOT commanded to
receive the gift of the Spirit (Acts 2:39). We are PROMISED that we will receive the gift of the Spirit. Everyone knows the difference between a COMMAND and a PROMISE right? Yet we are commanded to be FILLED with, controlled by, the Spirit. In other words, instead of “grieving” or “quenching” the Spirit in your life… LET HIM HAVE HIS WAY!!!

(1) This command is an emphatic imperative which should be literally translated, “BE BEING KEPT FILLED WITH THE SPIRIT”. It is ‘present’ and ‘on-going’. While we all receive the Spirit as a gift (Acts 2:39, 5:32), we are to continually allow the Spirit to control, and fill our lives.

(2) This command is for each and every Christian. It was not just for the apostles, elders, deacons. Paul was not converted along with the 3,000 on the day of Pentecost. Frankly we don’t know where he was. However, we are assuming he was there since it was a ‘big’ day for the Jews. The Gentile Christians of Ephesus were not there either. Yet this command is for all Christians.

(3) This command is in the present. “Continue to be filled with the Spirit.” You eat food for your physical bodies every day in order to live – so allow the indwelling Spirit to feed, nurture and nourish you every day. The Spirit will lead and feed your spiritual nature.

(4) This is a command to be obeyed. Yet in the obedience, it is important to understand the motive behind it all. TO GROW IN CHRIST!!! Guilt, coercion, manipulation are not there. JUST GROW IN CHRIST!!! God will be praised, and the Spirit will continue to make and form Christ in you.

Just like it is hard to hide when a person is stoned, falling down drunk… it is hard to hide when your life is under the control, filled by the Spirit.

Although this short lesson does not exhaust the grand subject of “be filled with the Spirit,” it should whet your spiritual appetite. Get to it… Begin the day with prayer, and maybe a walk. Continued the day with a verse and a song… and a smile! You belong to Him now!

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