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Bible Basics

Shannon Gilmour

Understanding the heart of scripture from God's heart to yours

*This e-book is a free resource and the author grants permission to distribute this book provided
that it is NOT sold or used with any other monetary/commercial collaboration.

If you have purchased 'Bible Basics' please contact the author @ srnityblu@gmail.com
Shannon Gilmour


If we strip down religion, as we know it, what are we left with? Absolutely nothing. Believe it or
not, this is a good place to start from when answering important questions such as:

·······Who is God?
·······How can I know God exists?
·······How can God become real in my life?
·······Why is there suffering and pain in my life?
·······Did God really choose this for me?
·······How can knowing God help change my life for the better?

Religion is simply a man made term to give a well-rounded definition to faith and all the detail
that goes along with it. Let’s get something straight here, man has made a multi- billion dollar
industry out of exchanging religion into an institution and this is something that was never
intended by God.

Religion as described by the Apostle James is this: “Religion that God our Father accepts as pure
and faultless is this: To look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from
being polluted by the world.” Jas 1:27 NIV

Now this statement is obvious as to its intended meaning and many churches today will often
balk at this scripture. God’s word cannot lie and therefore I understand why many people
question God based on the outward appearance of man, and for this reason, we need to get naked
so to speak and clothe ourselves with sound truth and teaching.

So, I ask you to rid yourself of mindsets, and precepts that you have been taught, what you think
you know, and what you think you ought to know. This is not going to be easy, and questions
will arise, but if you keep an open mind, the answers will come, and you’ll realize that they need
not be complicated.

We like to complicate things. I do not know why this is; perhaps it is to prove our volubility
without exposing our vulnerability. But one thing is certain, we have gone to great lengths to
complicate God and the reality of Him and it hasn’t worked in our favor. It has exposed our
humanistic flaws to a fault, and continues to over expose them creating an ever more desire to
cover them up!

Faithful people who clearly love God have fallen into the trap to the desires of their own heart
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simply because they try so hard at making God work for them; Cramming this huge grandiose
spiritual being into their itty-bitty human mindsets and lifestyles. Simply put; it doesn’t work.

Has it for you so far? Not likely, no. You may have experienced highs and lows, but nothing that
is consistent. It is because our behavior is inconsistent. And the leaders of today, teach things,
perhaps in all good intentions, that give scripture inconsistency when God’s word hasn’t changed.

So, again, let’s start off fresh. Let’s set aside all understandings so that we can work through
discovering God together, on an even level. And let’s set aside all judgment of those we have
learned from, and that which we have placed on God and ourselves.

Who is God?

If we look at the beginning of Genesis, we get a vague picture of who God is. We are shown that
He existed before our concept of time, and we are shown that He spoke the earth and its contents
into existence. Further, on in Genesis we are shown that He shaped the first human out of the
earth and the second from the first’s rib.

Through the beginning of scripture, we are shown that God is a creator. For whatever reasons He
decided to create. He created and saw that His creations were good. So here, we are shown what
God considers ‘good’- everything that which He created. That includes us historically, right up to
our present with our youngest generation and beyond that. God’s creation is good. So we know
that God sees goodness in what He created.

Adam and Eve were the first inhabitants on earth. They were created, just like we are, in God’s
image. What is God’s image you may ask? His image is of goodness. Every single human being
and animal has this potential within them. It is an inherit condition passed down from a parent
through the lines of lineage leading back to our patriarch, Adam, but firstly God.

God’s image is more than just goodness. It is everything that He is in character. We know this
because God gave Adam and Eve the ability to choose, right from the time they were born. He
never commanded them to do anything and bestowed prosperity and happiness to them, but it
was still their choice to make or not to be ‘fruitful and multiply or to eat of the fruit or not’.
Nothing hindered their happiness, as they were free to do what they wanted. However, all that
came to a stop when they were made aware of their human condition.

See, they did not know they had the ability of free choice, before Satan made them aware of it,
they simply did what they chose without thought of consequence because at the time, they chose
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good, because good was all that they knew.

Think of it this way; can you get upset with an infant for swallowing a penny if they did not know
that it was something that they were not to do?
Can you expect your loved one to respect your level of boundaries if you have not let them know
what those boundaries are?

Satan came in to challenge God’s boundaries on Adam and Eve, and they made the choice to give
into Satan’s deception. Does this make God wrong, or not good? No. He created us in His image,
that means that within Adam and Eve there was free will to start with, just like God. Their free
will was within them, it had not been made apparent until it was challenged.

God’s image is consistent, and Adam and Eve’s character was consistent until Satan came in to
expose their free will. There is truth in consistency and there is False in inconsistency.

God used His free will to create the earth, and humankind, and He uses His free will to hold true
to His word even today.

So am I saying that God has both consistent and inconsistent character within in Himself? Is He
both good and evil?

Let me ask you this. Can you create something and call it good if you yourself do not know what
evil looks like?


Good is exposed by evil and evil is exposed by good.

God is Good and He knows both good and evil, but He’s not evil. There’s a difference. We are not
evil, but we through Adam and Eve have been exposed to the consistency of good as well as the
inconsistency of evil and we can choose to live for good that which is God- as in His own image,
or we can choose to give ourselves over to evil, which is not good, which is against God.

So let me clear this up. When God saw that His creation was ‘good’ we have to be reminded that
in order for us to understand what ‘good’ is, we have to have the same level of understanding of
what ‘bad’ is. We cannot comprehend what bad is, if we haven’t been told what ‘good’ is, and viea
versa. When God calls something ‘good’ He is coming from a place of knowing what ‘bad’ is. He
judges 'good' by what is' bad' and He judges what is ‘bad’, by what is ‘good.’
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We see this example in infants.

A baby does not know that temper tantrums are ‘bad’ they just know that it is a way to get what
they need or want. A baby doesn’t know that lying is ‘bad’ it is something that they have to be told
is bad, because they automatically think it is ‘good’

Good gets desired results, and the results are measured from what is bad or negative.

Are you with me?

Adam and Eve had the responsibility to live up to their ‘goodness’ but because they disobeyed and
gave into the challenge that Satan proposed to them, their free will became apparent to them.
They now had a knowledge of both good and evil and this through them is something that we all
have. God could not have created a tree of good and evil if He Himself could not know both

God created man to be ‘good’ because God is good, but God also knows bad just like it is a
character within us, it is a character within Him but is dormant, because of His consistent
goodness that comes from truth. (And in the case of His wrath, this is set apart for a certain time
in our future.)

Just because someone exhibits bad behavior, does not make them bad, would you agree? Many
people do not want to hear this about God and His dual character because we would like scripture
to fit into our lives so that we can excuse our bad behavior. This behavior does not make anyone
bad, but if it is consistently inconsistent, then one gives themselves over to it creating themselves
to be an enemy of God.

Adam and Eve were not enemies of God, and neither was their son Cain. Not at first. Cain
committed the first murder, and although it did not go unpunished, God’s goodness did not
allow Him to pay back evil with evil. Cain was allowed to live and had to give an account of his
wrongdoing through certain circumstances, had he asked for forgiveness, God would have given
it to its entirety.

Through this situation, we see God’s character of goodness shine through. He was just in
punishment but did not go overboard and allow any ‘bad’, which is evil to follow through. He was
merciful and kind to Cain regardless. It wasn’t God’s goodness that cursed Cain, it was Cain’s
actions that cursed him.
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Through Cain’s behavior, we are shown just what the evil side of free will can do. This is what
separates us from God; because God’s character is good and he created us to be consistent
creatures developing goodness in all we do. It is the inconsistency of the opposite, which is evil
that develops within us if we choose to allow it. When we give ourselves over to it, this is what
condemns us because it breeds corruption.

This shows us that within God’s character there is no corruption. He has the ability to do so
perhaps, if He chose, but He has made His choice and it is consistent. He is bound to His truth
and His word and therefore He holds no condemnation for us. It is our actions that bring about
our own condemnation and this is what God judges us on. He uses His goodness as a baseline to
judge that which is bad, and He judges what is bad based on what is good.

Does this make sense? Email me with your questions: srnityblu@gmail.com

Now the one thing that we have to keep in mind here is that God is NOT man, although He
understands human nature since He created us, this is NOT how God operates. All the laws that
we subject ourselves to through jealousy, greed, pride, as well as all the other negative qualities
within our character, are all apart of inconsistent and untrustworthy behavior and this is not
Who God is. “God is spirit” John 4:24 NIV, and therefore is formless in the sense that He is not
bound by the limitations of skin and bone. His character is not bound by the limitations of a right
and left-brain. His mind comprehends so much more because it is so much more!

Scripture has a lot to say when it comes to God’s character such as: “God is love.” 1 John 4:17

I have a question, do you know what love is? Or rather, what is love to you? I can guarantee that
most of you are placing human standards towards God’s character right now, based on your
flawed knowledge of love.

Our love is based on the human condition that holds varying degrees of kindness, compassion
and when we are spurned by love, it often taints us, and changes the amount of love we are
willing to display the next time. Each time our heart gets hurt, another notch is put in and the
trust levels decrease, and if one endures the pain and heartache long enough, they suffer and give
their hearts over to great bitterness.

This is not God’s definition of love, and it shouldn’t be ours either. We know that God is spirit,
and that if God is love, then this character defines whom God is, and is within us to give. This
character trait is consistent with God’s goodness.
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Scripture defines God’s love as this: “Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast,
it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of
wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts,
always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.” 1 Co 13:4-5 NIV

Knowing this character trait in God, gives us an idea of why He dealt with biblical characters such
as Adam and Eve, Cain as well as the other historical characters as He has. We also know that
God has not changed; He cannot, so He deals with us in the same way!

“I the Lord do not change, so you O descendants of Jacob, are not destroyed.” Ma 3:6 NIV

This answers why God allows bad and evil things to happen in this world. It is because of free
will, that His love is long-suffering, and He will not allow Himself to give into anything less than
what His love has to offer, in order that His children are re-united to Him- even if it is eventually,
later rather than sooner.

God desires us to use our free will and love Him freely, because we choose to do so. If we do not,
His love still prevails and does not change just because we make a choice to deny Him. We will
always have the choice to choose, and God will never force us to do anything, which we do not
want to do.

Ask yourselves this, do you feel it is your right to force someone to love you the way you want? As
much as you want your needs met, you are willing to accept the love that the person has for you
that is with in them to give. You allow them to love you the way that they want, and can, and if
they choose not to do so, it may hurt, but you let them go. Even you do not want love forced on
your person and you certainly don’t want to force anyone to love you if they simply cannot.

God loves us because we are created by Him, for Him. He recognizes that that love is not
reciprocated, but because of God’s consistency in His goodness, eventually He knows that
through faith, our love for Him will prevail.

Please allow me to put this into humanistic terms. When you first meet someone, there is a
standard level of respect and give and take. As a relationship grows, the trust and level of respect
goes up. The person becomes more worthy in your eyes because they hold true to whom they say
they are, and they are consistent in truthful behavior, when this happens, the more likely it is for
you to allow yourself to lean on that person and develop a deeper bond with them.

This is true with our relationship with God. His behavior is consistent and does not change, and
Shannon Gilmour

over time, we begin to allow our faith to grow and develop creating a deeper relationship and
bond with our Father, God.

Through tyranny and oppression in this world, we see the inconsistency of evil behavior and
some people openly deny God repeatedly. Is God immune to this behavior? No, and He hasn’t
turned a blind eye to it either. It is because of His love for His children at this present time, He
can do nothing. It breaks His heart to see such hate and hurt in this world, and He has set aside
His wrath and judgment for a certain time. Until then, He remains in His love; long-suffering and
not delighting in evil for when evil finds its way into the lives of those who are weakened by it,
His love picks that victim up and over time strengthens them and builds them back up to a place
of rightful standing.

God’s love in the Old Testament is the same as it is in the New. He has not changed, but because
of Adam and Eve’s behavior that brought condemnation upon themselves through a curse, God
had to set provisions in place to make atonement for that curse (wrongdoing); or what God
defines as sin. We are shown this through the blood sacrifice of animals.

God killed the first animal and used its hide to cover Adam and Eve’s nakedness. This nakedness
is a metaphor for sin. Because before they sinned, they were not aware of their nakedness. It was
not shameful for them to walk around without clothing. Their sin exposed them to the shame
and the inconsistency of evil. From that time on, God required a blood sacrifice in order for
people to be aware of their sinful nature and as a way to prevent a separation from God.

Throughout the bible, we are shown that some nations followed God and His precepts and some
nations did not. The law God established through Moses was not to judge anyone, but acted as a
continued reminder as a reason why blood sacrifice was necessary. Sin separated people from
God and that brought judgment upon a person.(which still does today.) The blood cleansed one
of their guilt and allowed for a renewed relationship with Him. God saw that although this was a
perfect law, people could not uphold the current covenant.

People had corrupted His law to suit their own purposes. The Pharisees and Sadducees made it
almost impossible for someone to know God and because of this, through the Law, people
became inconsistent in their behavior and faith. God took compassion on all that He saw and
decided that through His Son Jesus, all sins could and would be atoned for, once and for all.

It is through Jesus’ bloodshed that God created the perfect sacrifice and this put an end to animal
sacrifice. Through Jesus Christ and the cross, the Law of Moses was made complete. God’s love is
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faithful and continues in truth, as Jesus became a living sacrifice. Before Jesus, animals died and
their blood was sprinkled upon the mercy seat and the body of the animal was burned. Each time
someone sinned, an unblemished animal had to give up its life. Jesus died once, and rose from the
grave so that He could be the living testimony to God’s love. It is through Jesus that we are no
longer separated from God by sin.

Today, God’s love still remains, but now it is exclusively through Jesus Christ and the cross. In the
Old Testament, people could come to God freely when they made the atonement for their sins,
now our atonement is through His son, Jesus and as long as we stand in our faith in Him, we are

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall
not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world,
but to save the world through Him.” John 3:16 NIV

His blood is our covering, just as God used animal skin to cover Adam and Eve of their
nakedness. We are no longer naked when we believe in God’s firm foundation of love that is in
Christ Jesus!

Who is Jesus Christ?

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with
God in the beginning.” John 1:1 NIV

I’d like us to take a look at the word ‘was’ and the word ‘with’. How can something be a ‘was’-
meaning possess or take on the whole character, and be separate as in the word ‘with’ describes?
In this case to be along side.

We are told that ‘In the beginning’ the Spirit of God was hovering. We think in terms of spirit as
one dimension; as we have one spirit. Most of us think that when one talks about the soul it can
be used with spirit interchangeably. While that may be the case, they are still distinct but carry
the same purpose, or agenda. The spirit and the soul are two distinct entities unto themselves but
cannot work without the other. They follow the same guidelines in unison to each other. The
spirit is perhaps the character of the person, while the soul is the essence of that character. ( or
vise versa) In simpler terms, perhaps one acts as an accentuation and an extension of the
collective unit.

The soul could very well be the term used for two spiritual entities coexisting within one form at
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the same time, and while separately they do not change, just the one continues to take on the
collective name, while the other takes on another name although the name is reminiscent to the
original. (Remember the words, was and with? Maybe this is a way to explain the mystery of this

“For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even
to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.”
Hebrews 4:12 NIV

In the above scripture we are shown that at the very least, soul and spirit are one, but can be
separated. We know they both carry spiritual properties and are something that is unseen in

I know it sounds confusing, but we use this concept all the time!

In word usage, we use a thesaurus to define a word to give it a deeper meaning within a sentence.
And you know as well as I do that there are many different ways to say the same thing. Although
we may change a certain word within a sentence or paragraph to avoid repetition, the meaning of
the substituted word does not changed, or change the meaning of the sentence. It just gives
perhaps a better elaboration.

Here we are taken back to the beginning of Genesis and shown that Jesus Christ began as a
spiritual being, like God. As hard as it is to comprehend, at our beginning, Jesus was never a
created ‘something’ from God. The spiritual accentuation known as Jesus was God, and an
extension of Him. The meaning of ‘the word’ here takes shape firstly in the form of truth, which
is consistent with God’s goodness.

So however you would like to look upon God, Jesus is God there is no getting around that fact,
but He is an extension of God born of flesh for our benefit. Through Jesus, the character of God
has not changed because Jesus was present at the beginning and created the world. Therefore, we
know that God, through Jesus (in flesh) still exhibits the consistent behavior of truth through His

I am trying to break this down here in terms that we all can understand. I know God is
unfathomable in design, but if we can draw even an inkling of this understanding then maybe, it
will help us to develop a relationship with God and come by it truthfully.

However you choose to look at God, know this; God is spirit, and Jesus in his original form, is
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also spirit. They were not created beings; they existed together, separately and collectively, as a
whole even while remaining apart.

“He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For by him all things were
created, things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or
authorities; all things were created by him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things
hold together. And he is the head of the body, the church, he is the beginning and the firstborn from
among the dead so that in everything he might have the supremacy. For God was pleased to have all
his fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth
or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.” Colossians 1:15-20 NIV

“The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all
things by his powerful word.” Hebrews1:3 NIV

Throughout scripture we are shown through Jesus’ own words that He is truth. His word that He
spoke to the various groups was not to be taken lightly. Every time He spoke “I tell you the Truth,”
it was something that He was. He could not speak differently. His goodness in truth remained
wherever He went and His peace and mercy fell on the households of believing men, through
miracles and His very presence.

“No one has ever seen God, but God the One and Only, who is at the Father’s side, has made Him
known.” John 1:18 NIV

Jesus even though he was born of flesh was still God in spirit. The original form of God had not
changed with the confines of the human body. He took on the human form so that people could
see him and so that He could show people through His mercy, they could experience His grace.

If you have ever had the experience of explaining anything to a child, you will know that you
cannot bring their level of understanding to yours, you have to bring your level of understanding
down to theirs. You choose your words based on their youth and break down concepts in a way
that they can easily understand.

This is why God sent Jesus, so that we could better understand or relate to God based on our level
of comprehension. The Law of Moses was perfect, but it had changed because of
misinterpretation. That is why it is said that Jesus did not come to change the law, but to fulfill it.

If you are a parent, then you will know that at times your child has a hard time living up to your
Shannon Gilmour

expectations. Although you do not alter your mandate, you make provisions or compromises-
without altering your morals or the set intention or meaning behind your guidelines, you just
realize that your child can follow the direction more easily if there was a way for them to
understand your intention in understandable detail.

This is what God has done through Jesus! Jesus is our way to know God once and for all, it is just
that simple!

Jesus was a man in the sense that He took on flesh to relate to us; and us Him. This did not
change who God was in Spiritual design and He came into the world as He did because of His
consistent goodness. He had to find a way that would maintain His character and not give into
the inconsistency of evil.

God is so pure that corruption cannot stand in His presence.

God told Moses to take off his sandals because the area that Held God’s presence had become
Holy. God will not let corruption touch Him and therefore the fleshly garment of man that Jesus
wore was a way for God’s people to see Him and for God to walk among them while offering help
and guidance. Being born of a virgin allowed God to maintain His purity, and that virgin’s purity
followed through in physical form as well as in spirit. Mary was a human representation of God’s
goodness that acted as a conduit for God to enable Himself to walk with His children once again
while maintaining the Law He had already established.

Before Adam and Eve’s corruption, God walked and talked with them, and they were free from
shame. It is through Jesus that we are allowed to come to know God in the same way, as scripture
says that we can come to God just as we are, without shame, because God took mercy on us and
offered Himself as a sacrifice in flesh, so that our sin, through Jesus Christ, no longer condemns

Loving God does not need to be so hard.

Do you see how stripping down scripture to its basics can help better establish a relationship with

How do I know God exists:

This is a common question especially when one is trying to seek Him out with all the new and
developing ways to discover religion. Speaking from experience, knowing that God exists is hard,
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it is not easy, and it takes a level of dedication that most people are not willing to invest their time

If you are looking for a quick discovery and wanting Him to reveal Himself to you in a way that is
openly obvious, it won’t happen.

If you look in scripture you find that His character and behavior are consistent with people’s
actions. Historic evidence in scripture shows us that there is always a level of faith, hope, and trust
in God first, before He openly divulges anything of Himself.

He has left His living word for us to establish in our hearts and learn His truth from. God does
not change, and although He has and still does reveal Himself through miracles and supernatural
feats, these do not happen without a level of trust on your part.

It is exclusively through your desire and willingness to open up your heart and allow His words of
truth to settle upon it. It is then through prayer that the lines of communication are opened.

One of the essential questions to ask yourself is why exactly are you wanting to know God?

· Are you seeing something in believers that you do not have?

· Do you want a quick fix from all your troubles?
· Do you desire to know the truth to your life and experience happiness and joy
through genuine results?
· Are you seeking God because you have tried everything else and he is your only hope?

While these are all valid questions, in seeking out the answers come misunderstandings and
misinterpretations, that is why it is essential to read God’s word for proper direction and not rely
on the relationship that others say they have with Him.

God’s word is direct, and it does not change. While many people do have wonderful experiences
of God that are truthful and are reliable, some people are not so fortunate. While their
experiences with God may be real to them, when one backs them up against scripture, they show
that these experiences are not from Him.

“Why does this generation ask for a miraculous sign? I tell you the truth, no sign will be given to it.”
Mark 8: 22 NIV
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God will not reveal His signs and wonders to anyone who does not believe in Him firstly.
It is unfortunate but we see this so prevalent in the public eye today and it has caused more
questions than answers.

The answers to your questions first begin with God’s word. They are binding words that cannot
change and hold truth that is consistent. If you want to know if God exists, then the best way is to
look at the historical evidence of God’s word. As you begin to read and gain an understanding, try
applying God’s messages of love and hope to your life to incorporate His mandates and promises
within your lifestyle. This will help you understand that God is still who He says He is! Applying
scripture to your life and changing your lifestyle to meet the guidelines of God’s direction helps
you to live in consistent truth and allows you to discover the existence of God and just how real
he is personally, to you.

God’s word cannot be molded to suit the needs of our lives, when that is done; it breeds
inconsistency and causes doubt in a believer. God’s word has to be adhered to as it cannot adhere
to our level of understanding within our lifestyle.

One thing to note is that God does not require our level of understanding to be perfect. He
requires that we read His word with a sincere readiness and openness in our hearts and that is
what will allow us to receive a level of trust and faithfulness to know that God is real and He will
take care of the rest.

To begin your road of discovery, begin reading about the promises of God, and learn about His
character. Dedicate and set aside some time for daily reading to help you establish trust that
allows your faith in Him grow.

Scriptural promises that are given to a person through their faith in Jesus:

“But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness and all these things will be given to you as well.”
Matthew 6:33 NIV

God will supply our every need:

"But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus” Philippians
4:19 NIV

God cannot go back on His living word. His obligation is only extended to meet our basic human
needs in the way of food, clothing, shelter, companionship, love, and salvation through Jesus
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Christ. ( As much as teachers in the public eye will scream at you that God does not want you to
live in lack, God will not fulfill the desires of your heart if they do not line up with His. This
includes attaining wealth. To give someone wealth without gaining responsibility is something
that goes against His word. For that reason alone, He cannot grant your desire that comes from
greed, not need.)

His grace is sufficient.

“My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” 2 Corinthians 12:9 NIV

“For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of
God.” Ephesians 2:8 NIV

“Through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand, and we
rejoice in the hope of the glory of God.” Romans 5:2 NIV

You will not be overtaken with temptation.

“No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let
you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way
out so that you can stand up under it.” 2 Corinthians 10:13 NIV

“Now Him who is able to keep you from falling and to present you before his glorious presence
without fault and with great joy-” Jude vs. 24 NIV

“May your God , whom you serve continually, rescue you!” Daniel 6:16 NIV

God rescued Daniel from the lions den!

Victory over death.

“God has raised this Jesus to life, and we are all witnesses of the fact.” Acts 2:32 NIV

“For I am the least of the apostles and do not even deserve to be called an apostle, because I
persecuted the church of God. But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace to me was not
without effect. No, I worked harder than all of them- yet not I, but the grace of God that was with
me.” 1 Corinthians 15:9-11 NIV
Shannon Gilmour

“But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.” 1 Corinthians 15:57

All things work together for good.

“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called
according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28 NIV

Forgiveness of sins.

“Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved” Mark 16:16 NIV

“Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your
sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. The promise is for you and your children and
for all who are far off- for all whom the Lord our God will call.” Acts 2:38 NIV

Eternal life.

“My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they
shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is
greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand.” John 10:27-29 NIV

God’s character in scripture:

“You judge by human standards; I pass judgment on no one.” Luke 8:15 NIV

God cannot judge us because of the consistent goodness that is within Him. He judges what is
bad based on what is good, and viea versa. It is not us that He judges but the sin that is within us
and it is that sin that we choose to do that leads us to condemnation.

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness,
and self control.” Galatians 5: 22-23 NIV

This is the essence of who God is, in a nut shell. It is the epitome of Him. He cannot change who
He is no matter how man tries to mold and shape Him into a creation of their own making and
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“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is
not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil
but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love
never fails.” 1 Co 13:4-5 NIV

“Make every effort to live in peace with all men and to be holy, without holiness no one will see the
Lord.” Heb12:14 NIV

God is a peacemaker and holy. He is not a hypocrite and cannot ask us to act and be a certain way
if He himself is not. Once you have established a firm foundation in Christ Jesus through
scriptural reading, you will then be able to discover the evidence of God through other people’s
experiences, such as healings, deliverance, visions, dreams, impartations as well as historical
archeological findings that actually back up the events as stated through out God’s word!

God is real and it is hard to convince anyone of that fact if at first they don’t have a measure of
faith. That faith need not be strong as even a small amount is able to move mountains and steer
you straight into the comfort of the shadow of God’s wing! All it takes is dedication,
perseverance, and hard work. If you seek God out, you will find Him that is a fact and it is one
that is guaranteed!

"For everyone who asks recieves (according to His will); he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks,
the door will be opened." Matthew 7:8 NIV
*Parenthesis added.

How can God become real in my life?

If you want to know God, you can. There is nothing stopping you except you. You have God’s
word for you to read, follow, and take into your heart and top that off with a dedicated prayer life,
then God will become deeply real to you.

God judges our hearts and if you are sincere in your willingness to draw closer to Him He will
draw closer to you. God is as close as His name and He takes great pleasure in having a
relationship with you.

“Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man
who built his house on the rock” Matthew 7:24 NIV
Shannon Gilmour

Why is there pain and suffering in my life?

This is the ultimate question. Pain and suffering are apart of the human condition. God never
promised that those who believe automatically get a free pass to overstep this element of life.

Suffering and pain are dependent on three things:

· The choices you make that affect you as well as those around you -directly and indirectly.
· The choices that others make that affect you — directly and indirectly.
· The choices however, they are made are sometimes used by God to strengthen us and help
shape our lives to create a
new creation within us.

We have the ability to choose, even as believers. This is something that is never taken away from
us. It is apart of our design and the choices we make have cause and effect elements woven in
their origin but very rarely do we consider our choices except with an expectation in aiding us
personally. Our choices do affect those around us regardless, and no matter how good the
intention may be, the choice can still harm someone without meaning to.

Such as a job opportunity, you may have taken a job that you are perfect for and it’s what you
wanted, and you make the choice to take the job, not realizing that someone else perhaps needed
that job just as much as you did. Because they did not get the job position although they were
next in line, they may have to sell their house, it may have caused them depression etc.

Now although you are not responsible for such a dramatic toll on their lives, the example is to
show how through decision making little regard we actually have for someone else in making
certain decisions personally.

It is another matter altogether though when someone makes a choice to suit their personal needs
that dramatically effect us. We take the hit personally and expect the other person to make their
choice according to our own needs, and not theirs.

Frankly, this sounds all too confusing, and in reality, it is more so than what we ought to make it.
Choices happen; we cannot get around life not making decisions. Moreover, when things go
wrong, very rarely, do we accept responsibility and try to discover an alternate route out of a
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dicey situation, some point their finger straight up; and shake it hastily at God.

God is not in control of any decisions that concern free will. Any choice that is made and that
goes wrong is not from Him. God does not steer a person wrongly. Bottom line.

Some may say ‘I prayed to God for direction and He led me here, and I’m still in a mess.’

While that may be the case, there are still some things to consider. Did your decision glorify you,
or God? Did you actually hear and obey or convinced yourself that you did and allowed your
heart to guide you? Or is this one of those opportunities where God has decided to allow this for
you to see if you will allow the situation to strengthen and challenge you so that He can use you
mightily for something else?

A person has to undergo strength training in order to pick up their crosses, and although it hurts,
it is a requirement daily.

“And anyone who does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me.” Matthew 10:38 NIV

“If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.”
Luke 9:23 NIV

Pain and suffering are the cause of the inconsistency that is apart of the human condition. Many
people do not want to hear this but we are self indulgent, prideful, lustful, covetous, vengeful,
ravenous, wasteful, and intolerant. These, and other negative qualities are apart of a network of
what God calls sin. Often times, the choices we make are ruled with sin in our hearts, not God.
Without realizing our human condition and the order and balance choices create in life, we
quickly thwart our blame in heaven’s face.

God promises to take care of our burdens when we give all our worries to Him, and He will give
us rest. It does not mean that we can walk away from problems, it means that they are not things
we need to dwell on, when we are willing to do that; He will provide a way to help lighten the

Did God really choose to allow me to endure pain and suffering?

God does not like to see anyone suffer. He takes pleasure in your delight and shares in your
sorrow when you are in times of great heartache and pain. All that concerns you concerns Him,
but as much as He was not the direct cause of your pain and suffering,
Shannon Gilmour

He has to allow you to go through it.

Think of it this way; does a boxer learn how to fight without first stepping into the ring? Can he
learn to bob and weave without first experiencing some hard hitting punches from the opponent?

God is our encourager sitting on the outside of the ring directing us. Like the coach, He cannot
endure the round for you, but if you listen to His guidelines from the sidelines, you will be led
into a victorious outcome.

Sometimes failure happens and it maybe that you listened to what you thought you heard; but
God uses every opportunity for strengthening, just like the boxer. He works His way up to his title
and as a Christian, so do you! This is called sanctification.

"Blessed is the man who persevers under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will recieve the
crown of life that God has promised to those who love him." James 1:12 NIV

God allows you to stumble because He recognizes that there is not growth in you if you are
constantly being held up. Eventually you have to grow up and stand in your faith. How can you if
you have never had to stand up in it?

"Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that
the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be
mature and complete, not lacking anything. If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God who
gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to Him." James 1:2-5 NIV

This can be said too when we listen to the directions of others in their faith, and want what they
want without understanding why we don’t share in their experiences even though our faith is
strong to us, but yet so very infantile in God’s sight.

Have you ever had your parent say to you, “Try again!” or “Keep it up!” When all you wanted was
for them to take over? It would have been so much easier if they had. As much as it pained them
to see you struggle, they knew that if they over stepped their boundaries already set in place, and
did the work for you, there would be nothing for you to gain out of the situation and learn from
failure and triumph in your success.
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"Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as sons. For what son is not disciplined by his
father? If you are not disciplined (and everyone undergoes discipline), then you are illegitimate
children and not true sons." Hebrews 12:7-8 NIV

God is not our bailout plan.

Handing out money to us whenever we need.

He will never cause someone to love you forcibly.
He will never wave a magic wand and make troubles disappear.

Even though we have to live with or through our hardships, God has promised us that He will not
abandon us. He never said that it would be easy to endure, but He will provide help if we seek His
guidance but help will not come in the form of doing the work for us and providing us with an
easy way out of conflict.

"When tempted, no one should say "God is tempting me," For God cannot be tempted by evil, or
does he tempt anyone; But each one is tempted when, by his own evil desire, he is dragged away and
enticed. Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives
birth to death." James 1:13-15 NIV

"Watch your life and doctrine closely. Persevere in them, because if you do, you will save both
yourself and your hearers." 1 Timothy 4:16 NIV

How can knowing God help change my life for the better?

Becoming a child of God takes hard work and dedication. It is not something that happens over
night, as it is a process. The process of sanctification helps to build character within us that God
recognizes. Through the belief in Jesus Christ and the cross, our lives go through a process of
strength training. Making mistakes and learning from them while applying God’s word to our
lives. Being an active participant and allowing God to do the work in us he needs to do help
change our lives for the better.

Once we have gone through the process that calls for change in us, we may look back and feel the
same but somehow the life we are living is different. Although we may face challenges, an inner
peace and confidence allow us to deal with the conflicts with wisdom, insight and a maturity that
surpasses our own understanding.
Shannon Gilmour

Knowing God makes life easier! Once you have grasped the skills that you need through God’s
refining process, He then promises to allow your life to become more than what it is!

Your freedom in Christ entitles you to enjoy the splendors of this life through happiness,
contentment, joy, and peace and this will follow through with you to a life of eternity in heaven!

"It is God's will that you should be sanctified..." 1 Thes 4:3 NIV


Everyone has questions when it comes to wondering if religion is right for them. It is unfortunate
but influential leaders have made a mockery of God’s word and His definition of what true
religion is.

It need not be complicated, and one thing is for certain, that God is as close as you want Him to
be. He does not come prancing into your life with bells and whistles and will not seek to gain your
attention with wondrous signs and miracles.

He stands to the door and knocks and it is up to you to let Him in via the way of your heart, not
through someone else’s.

“Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door,
I will come in and eat with him, and he with me.” Rev 3:20 NIV

Stripping down religion to its basics is key to helping anyone know God and His free gift of grace.
For anyone who is searching with a sincere heart, this is essential in helping set you on the firm
foundation of Jesus Christ by working on some biblical essentials from the ground up.

This version of Bible Basics entitles you to share, store and reproduce the information contained within this e-book,
provided that you DO NOT use the information for commercial purposes, or Alter it in anyway. ( Altering is adding
to or changing the context of the words and or intended meaning.)

Copyright 2010 Shannon Gilmour All rights reserved

If you share this ebook with others, let me know so I can personally THANK YOU!
May you be blessed and may God's grace and peace fall upon you and your house and everyone who enters in.