(Does this have anything to do with what is going on in your life?)
The world we are living in is REAL—not a fantasy, but is it possible the people in our world today are actually living in an alternate reality? Could we, as the human civilization on earth today, be living a reality that was set on its course by choice of the first man nearly 6,000 years ago? Has God the creator made possible for each individual today to plot their own course through their life by their own choices—making possible alternate realities because of the choices they make? Are you living an alternate reality that is allowing you to travel a different direction than the one the world in general is traveling? I hope these questions have stirred your interest enough to want to read the rest of this article, as IT could cause you to want to make a change in the direction your life may be headed!
I am sure that many of you readers have heard the theory of other dimensions, running parallel to ours at the same time, occupying the same space. I am also aware that when people see the two words of the title together, they might automatically begin to associate it with some video game or think of movies and stories, fictional characters, TV shows and what not, that are based on science fiction. A TV series (First a movie) that I remember was called Star-gate, where from time to time they would encounter a “Parallel Universe” with an alternate reality playing out, sometimes very much like their own and others very different. Before that, we had the Star Trek movies and TV series, where all kinds of mans imagined ideas have played out on the screen. Today some of those fictional ideas of the past have become reality, through the creative mind of man, and are part of our everyday life; such as cell phones and internet communication, skype etc.—which a man from the early to mid 20th century, popping into our world, might think he had entered an alternate reality far more advanced than his own. In a sense, that would be correct, if you are beginning to get the picture.
However, the kind of alternate reality I have in my mind for this article goes all the way back to the creation of mankind, based on REAL things seen in the Bible. I have spoken and written in time past of what seems to be Biblical evidence of God having more than one plan, when He created mankind; allowing the man himself to set his own reality in motion by his choice. However, there were only the two major choices for mankind—one leads to life and the other death—there is no middle or neutral ground for man, as the Bible makes clear. He was created for a specific purpose.
(The booklet titled “The Mystery Revealed” takes you on an imaginary journey back in time to before any creation, then brings you back to the present, allowing you to see possible points of reality, according to what the Bible reveals.)
But let us think for a moment, does the Bible really give any indication as to what could be termed an alternate reality for man? (Note the definitions given below and think about what we have already touched on) What Biblical evidence can you recall reading that one might recognize as something that could be considered an “Alternate Reality”? Furthermore, have you ever wondered what you would be doing right now, where you would be or perhaps what you would be like, IF you had made a different choice on something specific, some years in the past? Did that launch you down an alternate reality for your life? I have thought of this many times and I am sure many have pondered these thoughts at some point in their life, as the results of decisions they have made went awry; carrying them down a path they wish they could go back and change.
Let us separate the words of the title now and get some dictionary definition of each, so the point and direction of this article will become clearer. God actually does give every one of us an option to choose an alternate reality than just following the way of the world, or the crowd and is actually what makes us unique. You may have altered the reality of how your life would have played out several times without ever realizing it! There are those unexpected “things”; that canceled flight at the last minute, which crashed; skipping the cruise you were planning on and it sank; the 2 minute stop to check phone messages that actually kept you from being in an accident—you know, those things! Can you alter the reality for someone else by the choices you may be making? Adam altered the lives of every human to walk the earth with one single choice!
One definition of “alternate” had this, with an example; 1 one thing substituted for another; 2. taking the place of; alternative. "the rerouted traffic takes a variety of alternate routes"---(Can this not fairly accurately describe what is happening with mankind today, after Adams choice that brought on this reality?)
Another definition is “moving from one to the other” or “To pass back and forth from one state, action, or place to another.” (This also fits well with the example given above and life on earth today)
Now if you are a Bible student, think about the two trees in the Garden and what they represented to humanity. Ask yourself; did they represent two entirely different walks of life—could one choice have a possible “variety of alternate routes" but still lead to death? God’s plan for man was to eat of the tree of life and to live forever, but (for the sake of this article, as some do not believe this) let us say there was an alternate plan if man made the wrong choice. Man had to choose which way he would go of his own free will. God does not force anyone, giving us freedom of choice. Adam started out obeying God, but made a choice that God told him would lead to death, but he made it anyway. Satan had lied to Eve and she acted on that deceptive lie, which Adam then knowingly followed Eve into rebellion. (1Tim.2:14) This caused the alternate route we are on to fulfill God’s purpose; a different reality took affect that would now have to play out. We do not even know for sure how much was changed in that few moments of time! What we do know is that all have sinned (Rom.3:23) influenced by the god of this world (2Cor.4:4) and the pulls of the flesh, having come under the death penalty (Rom.6:23) because of that choice, as well as individual choices.
However, that was not the end of story for everyone who has been born into this world or reality and its society and various ways of sinful choices. A few walked with God from the OT era. Christ, as the second Adam has come and paid that death penalty for all who accept it. Those born into this world of sin can also choose a different or alternate reality than the one the world now lives in—Christ having made for us an alternate route. Heb. 9:27-28 says; “And as it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment, V.28 so Christ was offered once to bear the sins of many. (Considered first coming) To those who eagerly wait for Him He will appear (be seen) a second time, apart from sin, for salvation.” (Some, even in the COG have begun to teach and believe Christ will come a third time, which is Heresy and casts doubt on this verse and others as being fully truthful.)
So there are those now born into this world, with the unseen spiritual force influencing them, (2Cor.4:4 & Eph.2:2) holding them into this reality leading to death and away from God and Spirit life. It is going on today but very few understand it because they do not understand the truth of God. The majority, even in the “Christian” realm, travel this now alternate reality toward death and destruction because they are being taught falsehoods instead of truth. As time draws to a close it is accelerating in evils; but it is the same general way that Adam chose which brings death and destruction. This way became a reality for mankind, so now let us look at the definition of the other word in our title, reminding us of the definition of “reality” before going on.
Reality; 1. the state of things as they are or appear to be, rather than as one might wish them to be. 2. something that is real 3. the state of being real.
Another dictionary gives it this way; 1. the world or the state of things as they actually exist, as opposed to an idealistic or notional idea of them. 2. a thing that is actually experienced or seen, a thing that exists in fact, having previously only existed in one's mind. 3 the state or quality of having existence or substance.” (Once a choice of mind is made and acted upon, it begins to play out as reality—it becomes real—even if it is not what one may have imagined it would be, perhaps because of deception or other unforeseen circumstances.)
Now I hope that will get your minds to thinking in the direction this article is intended to go, when put with Biblical subjects and the choices we see made by humanity, which is recorded there. Jeremiah had his mind on the right track when he said these words; Jer.32:17 'Ah, Lord GOD! Behold, You have made the heavens and the earth by Your great power and outstretched arm. There is nothing too hard for You.” (NKJ) So why should anyone today think that God is limited to only have one reality play out at a time in this world? Remember God cut man in general off from the tree of life, but through Christ, He is involved with some who are not traveling the wide easy road to destruction. YOU CAN HAVE an alternate reality begin to play out for the rest of YOUR life and the choice is yours to make.
God ('elohiym-both-Gen.1:26-John 1:1-2) may have seen dozens, maybe even hundreds or thousands of various scenarios play out in their minds through vision, (They were not real until set in motion by choice of creation and the created being for whom the plan was for—the angels first and then man) so God could have done this “visualizing” of various scenarios before ever setting anything into motion to actually become a reality.
These “ideas of the mind” can and does; even now, apply to every single human being on the face of this earth. There are two basic attitudes and ways of life, summed up in either the “give” or the “get” way—selfless way of sharing and cooperating for the good of all or the selfish “me first” way of getting and taking advantage of others everywhere possible.
In reality and as far as the Bible reveals to us, there was no sin until Lucifer decided to rebel. (Ez.28:14-15& Isa.14:12-14) This was long before the creation of man and God did not create sin but He allowed it to be chosen by Lucifer. God gave the angels, as well as humanity, the freedom to make their own choices—which develops character, good or bad. God does not force anyone to do anything they do not want to do. We cannot say with any kind of certainty that God did not have a plan for man to live 2 or 3 thousand years in the human flesh, continuing to expand the Garden of Eden, if making the choice of eating from the tree of life and developing a Spiritual relationship. That was the command for man to do and would have been obedience. After all, up to that point God had supplied everything man needed and had put him in that perfect environment. Man was given the option to choose his own destiny or reality—life or death—but the reality God wanted for him and his very purpose for being was life, which is clear. We read in Titus 1:2 that God cannot lie and in 2 Pet.3:9, where he says the Lord does not wish that any should perish—so it is clear that God wanted man to choose the tree of life, which would have brought on a much different reality for mankind.
When Adam chose sin and death, the alternate plan was set in motion. That would come through Christ. Christ gave us some clarity about the two alternate ways of living in this age and this is where YOUR choice comes into play. Matt 7:13-14 "Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, (That is this reality and going the way of the world) and there are many who go in by it. 14 "Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it.” When we read the Bible and let its words soak into the mind, along with belief and commitment to walk in God’s ways, we will come away with the realization that God is the master planner as well as being the Almighty God who can fulfill His purpose. There are only a few today, as we see in the words of Christ above, which have grasped the reality this world offers and where it leads. They have turned to God in repentance, determined to let God bring them into an alternate reality from this one that leads to eternal death. There are a few men and women today who will not follow a crowd, a friend or even their mates into sin and a rejection of what God says in His word, as Adam did. Why?-because they have taken of the tree of life (the Holy Spirit) when they saw it was offered and want above all, that reality of everlasting life and to become like God and be free of sins pulls that lead to death.
Note this from Christ Himself; John 5:24 "Most assuredly, I say to you, he who hears My word and believes in Him who sent Me has everlasting life, and shall not come into judgment, but has passed from death into life.” It is very true that we choose our own destiny by the choices we act on as we move through this physical life. With each choice put into action there is a reality to come from that choice. James 1:14-15 “But each one is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desires and enticed. (This begins in the mind, just as it did with EVE) 15 Then, when desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, brings forth death.” This is the reality that Adam chose for all of mankind by his choice, which is an alternate reality from the one he could have chosen, which would have led him to eternal life and made a difference for the rest of mankind.
So what reality are your choices leading you into? Has your life changed for the better or for worse over a decision you have made in the last few years? Have you and your loved ones suffered needlessly because of a choice to go against the revealed way of God through His Commandments? This world is headed for destruction and there is no doubt about it. Some seek to have their own way and unwittingly launch themselves down a different path with a whole new set of circumstances, becoming a different reality than what they were previously on. No one can change the past but there is no reason you cannot change the future for your life. It is probably not too late to seek an alternate route and a better reality for the days and years just ahead. In preparing for baptism, you can begin to change your life and your future! You can have an alternate reality that leads to life but you must trust and believe God and His written Word, letting Him lead you to grow in righteousness from here on.
Editor for TCOGMSO