by Larry Chkoreff
ISBN - 0-9676731-1-9
First printing - June, 2000
Copyright © 2000 by Larry Chkoreff
Published by International School of the Bible, Marietta, Georgia, U.S.A.
Unless otherwise noted, Scripture quotations are from the NKJV of the Bible. Copyright 1979,1980,982 by Thomas Nelson, publishers. Used by permission.
For information on reproducing this book contact ISOB at:
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The ISOB web site is www.isob-bible.org.
The author, Larry Chkoreff, along with his wife Carol, are the founders of the International School of the Bible (ISOB) in Marietta, Georgia, U.S.A. ISOB provides materials and training necessary to develop disciples, and assists in church planting.
ISOB has established discipleship locations in many African countries, and is currently helping to establish cell churches in Haiti and several African countries.
It is our hope that this book will help seekers find a relationship with God, the Creator, as they bare themselves before Him in honesty and reality, and that it will help believers to become free to walk with God with joy and victory.
There are millions of people around the world who are coming to know Jesus Christ every week. The curve of growth is exponential. These people need simple, concise teaching and grounding in the basics of developing their relationship with God. Our hope is that this book will help many of them shorten their path of discipleship and become leaders for the Kingdom of God. It is our prayer that as you read this book you will experience the magnificent presence of God, and will acquire a driving passion to continue to pursue His presence.
This book is dedicated to Jesus Christ, the author and finisher of my faith.
Other books by ISOB:
Grow or Die Seminar Series - A 128 page, 10 lesson book for discipleship featuring the blood covenant with God.
Grow or Die Full Course - This consists of discipleship materials which includes over 100 lessons. This course is available for free downloading at the web site www.isob-bible.org, or on CD-ROM for reproduction on a personal computer.
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Table of Contents
Introduction - Be Real 4
Chapter 1 - Hello there, my Name is Jesus. 10
Chapter 2 - Bad news, good news. 14
Chapter 3 - What happened to me? 20
Chapter 4 - Who is this God who you have met? 26
Chapter 5 - Who Am I? 32
Chapter 6 - Death is annulled. 40
Chapter 7 - Jesus As Lord? 44
Chapter 8 - Moving on with prayer. 54
Chapter 9 - Moving on in the Word 59
Chapter 10 - Moving on with being changed. 69
Chapter 11 - Water Baptism. 76
Chapter 12 - A new way of life: new habits. 79
Chapter 13 - The Holy Spirit. 90
Chapter 14 - We need to be set free. 95
Chapter 15 - Moving on with the church. 107
Chapter 16 - Spiritual War. 118
Chapter 17 - Suffering &Tribulation. 126
Chapter 18 - Jesus is returning. 137
Gods original design for your life was to be in a living relationship with Him. The purpose of this book is to help you find that relationship and walk in it. It is not to add to the layers of roles that we play in life, especially religious roles and religious play-acting. I pray that this book will encourage you to become transparent with God, your Creator, and through that transparency to experience Gods wonderful love and grace which will mold you into His original design for your life.
Galatians 1:15,16 says, "But when God, who set me apart from birth and called me by his grace, was pleased to reveal his Son in me so that I might [________________________Pauls purpose in life was inserted here in this blank]." This is a quote from Paul who wrote the letter to the first century Galatian church. He had been a role player, and a murderer, killing first century Christians and thinking that his life was fulfilling Gods purpose for himself and for God. Notice those great statements, "But when God," and "by His grace." This is something that God did! He revealed to Paul his purpose in life. We all want to know why we are here and we want to know our purpose.
We each have a blank_______________________for our purpose in life, and it is different for each and every human. You cannot fill in the blank; only God can. Paul could not fill in the blank until he experienced the awesome presence of God and after walking with God for many years. But Paul finally did fill in his blank. God wants to reveal your purpose to you.
Every one of us starts out as who we really are.
Then we develop different attitudes of who we want to be. The "want to be's" become roles that we play. Quite often these decisions are made subconsciously. All of these roles build up like layers of an onion in our lives. It is God's purpose to take us back to who we really are, to the real "you." That is the "you" that God really loves and it is the only "you" that God can really work with to make you whole and fulfilled in life.
We fear the discovery of who we really are. Over the years we have constructed layers of self-deceit upon ourselves similar to layers of an onion. We have so many ways of hiding behind roles that others or ourselves have constructed. These roles are self-deceiving and we have become so lost behind them that we are incapable of rescuing ourselves. Before we know it we are hiding behind so many layers that we are totally self-deceived and fit into what Jeremiah said, "The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it?" (Jeremiah 17:9).
However, only God is capable of peeling back the layers. I can remember God speaking to me just a few months after I had met Jesus back in late 1979. It was not an audible voice, but rather it came through a cassette tape that had been previously recorded in a service 2,400 miles away. It was not something high and mighty or religious at all, it was very practical. However, when I heard it, I knew in my "knower" (deep inside) that it was God speaking directly to me. It went like this:
"I see the original design for your life. It is like a parchment scroll that unrolls. As it unrolls the script of your life is written on it. However, the edges of the scroll have been burnt and the ashes have been scattered so that no person, not even you, can any longer read the scroll. No human could possibly find all of the ashes, fit them together in the proper places and reconstruct the scroll.
However, I have not forgotten it. I am God Almighty, and I am capable of finding the ashes, resurrecting them back into parchment and putting them exactly where they belong so that you and others may see who you really are, and so that your life may return to its original design. This will be done slowly and progressively, and will only be an act of my grace. You need only to walk close to Me and give Me your heart, which also means being gut level honest with Me at all times."
I can testify that what God told me in 1980 has been my experience and is still my experience. God cannot lie!
True contentment in life is knowing that the real you is acceptable. It is knowing that you can be real with God. It is knowing that you dont know how to be completely real in one big event, but that as you go through life, God will cause the layers to be taken off little by little as you can tolerate it and accept it. You discover that God accepts you just the way you are, however He wants to peel back the layers to get to the real you. You will find out that God is gentle throughout this process. You will discover that quite often even the gentleness can be painful.
There can be hidden compartments in your life that you do not want anybody, especially God, to uncover and expose. You know it would be too painful. But God would say to you, "Go ahead and trust me to touch that hurt just one time. I may cause more pain in your life by touching it, but after that, healing will come. Is it worth it?" It is like the surgeon asking, "Is it worth it to bear the pain of my knife if it means cutting out the disease?"
God is the only one who can bring light to your "dark places." "When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life" (John 8:12).
That is why this book is titled "Be Real With God." Certainly it is my desire for you to come to know Jesus if you do not know Him. In this book you will find areas of doctrine that God desires you to know. You will find points of recommended obedience that are crucial if you are to mature in Christ. However, your relationship with God and your obedience to Him must be based upon your being real with yourself and with Him. If you play act with God you will be miserable and miss the only opportunity to really be free and whole.
We can cooperate with God.
The one thing that God can work with is your honesty. One of His names is truth. "Jesus answered, I am the way and the truth and the life " (John 14:6a). When Jesus was on trial for His life, He had a discussion with the Roman ruler, Pilate, in which they spoke about the definition of truth. "Pilate then said to Him, Are you a king then? Jesus answered, You say it that I am a king. To this end I was born, and for this cause I came into the world, that I should bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth hears My voice" (John 18:37).
There is a law on planet Earth that always works: it is called sowing and reaping (Galatians 6:7-8). One will ultimately reap whatsoever he sows. This law applies to truth also. If you sow the truth you will reap the truth. If you sow deception and dishonesty, you will reap darkness, and the truth will not shine in your life. "Everyone who is of the truth hears My voice" (John 18:37 b).
King David made the following statement in Psalm 32:2-3 after trying to hide his terrible sins from God. David could no longer live with himself, but he discovered that God honors the truth and that the truth will make one free.
"Blessed is the man whose sin the LORD does not count against him and in whose spirit is no deceit. When I kept silent, my bones wasted away through my groaning all day long" (Psalms 32:2-3). I suggest that you read the entire Psalm 32.
There is usually a price for being truly honest. Proverbs 23:23 says, "Buy the truth, and do not sell it, Also wisdom and instruction and understanding." One price you need to be prepared to pay is humility.
I believe that evil came to pass in our world and continues to exist by mans dishonesty. The cartoon below illustrates this. To the degree that you are not real, is the degree of potential evil or darkness that exists in your life. The wider the gap, the greater the potential is for evil.
This principle applies to all people.
You may be Jewish and have been raised in a God-fearing home with a culture that has taught you to never "convert" and to not listen to "those Christians." I understand you heeding that advice. Too many Christians have been hard hearted towards your faith and culture.
You may be Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist, New Age, or agnostic. You may be worshiping beings in the spirit world or idols. You may be an atheist or a self-sufficient person who has never felt a need for God. You may be reading this book as a new believer and have a desire to grow into maturity. You may have had tremendous faith at some point in your life, but now you doubt God. I respect where you are.
If you are spiritual God is not asking you to become secular.
If you are secular or scientific, He is not asking you to trust in spirits who are untrustworthy. He is not asking you to change your culture or to become like other Christians whom you may have met. He is not asking you to conform to some church or denomination. He is not asking you to become "religious."
What He is asking you to do is to be honest with your needs in life. We all have "felt needs." The three main categories are love, security and significance. We need unconditional love. We need to be loved by someone who knows all about us and still accepts us. We need security for material and emotional needs and for eternal destiny. We need significance, or we need to know that we matter and are worth something. God has a deep desire to be the supplier of those needs, as we will see in future chapters.
You are turning to someone or something for these needs already. It may be that you have been relying on your own soul power, which includes your intellect, education, and talents. I am not degrading these, but they must be put into proper perspective. These can appear to work to a degree. It may be that you have been relying on some spiritual religion that puts you into contact with real spirit beings. I understand that this is real and it can appear to work to an extent. In the end however, these "other gods" are unreliable. They are hard taskmasters. They always keep you in fear and demand your worship. They promise an easy way for the supply of your felt needs. However it like using a credit card; eventually the bill will come and you will have to pay.
God, the Creator, is reliable. His name is Truth. His Word is Truth. When He reveals Himself to you it will be in accordance with His Word so that you will not need to wonder if you have made contact with the real God or some "other god."
One thing I have found about God is that He rarely argues. He usually just reveals Himself and all of the arguments stop. He has a deeper desire to reach you with the truth than you have to receive it. He created you to have a close personal relationship with Him. He did not create you to have to rely on some religion or spirit. He did not leave your eternal destiny in the hands of other men who try to convince you that they have the truth.
To all of you seekers, God is able to reveal His name to you. You do not need to rely on mens arguments.
To all of you who are moving on toward maturity, He is the teacher. He wants to lead you into all truth and relate to you personally.
Now, I encourage you to exercise honesty with God. There is no correct way to pray. Just talk to Him as you would if He were your best friend sitting next to you. Tell Him what you believe and do not believe. Tell Him how you really feel, give Him your doubts, fears and bitterness. Tell Him your needs and how you have been attempting to satisfy them.
"You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart" (Jeremiah 29:13).
Just be real with God!