Thank you for visiting my website.
I know you have lots to do and many things on your mind, but please won’t you take these few moments to read through this brief article and think about what the Bible says?
Most people that I have met in my lifetime would say, “I want to go to Heaven someday.” But when I ask them, “How would you get there?” the typical answers would be one of the following:
- I think I have been good enough.
- I am trying to keep the Ten Commandments.
- I have been baptized.
- I have joined the church.
- I go to confession, and my minister told me I am forgiven.
While any of these things may sound good to you, would you care to know something very important? The Bible says, “Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy he saved us” (Titus 3:5). Listen to this! “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast” (Ephesians 2:8-9).
God wanted to make sure that no one in Heaven would be proud to be there because of some great thing accomplished. So the big question is, “If getting to Heaven is not by my good works, how then do I get there? What do these verses mean when they speak about God’s mercy, God’s grace, and God’s gift?
Let me explain. Please remember this is not my idea. Let me show you straight from the Bible. There are several things you must know.
1. You must know that every single person is a sinner, including you. The Bible says, “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). Sin offends God Who is absolutely, totally holy, pure, and clean.
2. You must know that your sin separates you from God. God told Adam and Eve, “Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat: but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die (Genesis 2:16-17).
As you know, even though they had many other trees from which to eat, the day came when Adam and Eve gave in to this temptation. Eve ate because she was deceived, but Adam ate from this tree in defiance of what God had commanded them.
As soon as they ate from that tree, they died spiritually. They no longer enjoyed hearing the voice of the Lord coming in the cool of the day. “And they heard the sound of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God among the trees of the garden” (Genesis 3:8). Not only did they die spiritually that day, many years later they died physically (Genesis 5:5).
You may be wondering, “So what does that have to do with me?”
It has everything to do with you! That’s how sin came into the world. It explains why your parents never had to teach you to disobey. Though you were a beautiful baby (I’m sure!), you were born a sinner. King David understood this and wrote, “Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, And in sin my mother conceived me” (Psalm 51:5). The Bible declares, “Therefore, just as through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all have sinned” (Romans 5:12).
Death is the payment for sin. Listen carefully. Here is the bad news and the good news. “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:23).
The bad news is that because you were born into the human family, you were already a sinner by birth. Later as you began to grow, you became a sinner by action. Your sin alienates or separates you from God. You are in big trouble!
So what is the good news? The good news is that God has a tremendous gift He wants to give you. In just the few minutes you have been reading this article, you have read the phrase, “The gift of God” two times. This was found in Ephesians 2:8-9 and Romans 6:23. Here is the great news about God’s awesome gift.
3. While you could never pay the wages of your sin, the Lord Jesus did! The Lord Jesus said, “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).
- He shed His blood and died on the cross to take your place. “Know that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver or gold. But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot” (1 Peter 1:18-19). He could do this because He had no sin of His own.
- He actually took your sin upon Himself as He paid for your sin. “Who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree” (1 Peter 2:24).
- He paid the price in full. That’s why just before He died, he said, “It is finished” (John 19:30).
- Then the great news is that three days later HE AROSE FROM THE DEAD AND BURST FORTH FROM THE TOMB! Listen to the report of the angel who said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified. He is not here; for He is risen, as He said. Come see the place where the Lord lay. And go quickly and tell His disciples that He is risen from the dead” (Matthew 28:6-7).
- This is called “the gospel” which means “good news”! The Apostle Paul said, “For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures” (1 Corinthians 15:3-4).
4. Your responsibility is to receive God’s awesome gift. “But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name” (John 1:12).
This simply means that you must come to the place today where you admit that you are a sinner. Understand that your good works and great accomplishments can never atone for your sins which separate you from God.
Talk to the Lord God right now! In your own words, by faith, right now admit to God that you know you are a sinner. Admit to Him that you know your sins separate you from Him. Acknowledge to God that you believe Christ died for your sins to pay your penalty and that He rose again the third day. Ask the Lord Jesus to come into your life to be your Savior.
You really must trust the Lord Jesus alone to be your Savior. Listen to what He said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me” (John 14:6).
The decision is yours. You can reject Christ. If you do ignore His gift, you will then face Him at the Great White Throne. Listen to what the Bible says about this, “And I saw a great white throne and Him who sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away. And there was found no place for them. And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God, and books were opened. And another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to their works, by the things which were written in the books. And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire” (Revelation 20:11-12, 15). The lake of fire is also called “hell,” and it lasts forever.
But if you want to be part of the family of the Lord who will be in Heaven forever, then you must place your faith in Christ and trust Him alone to be your Savior. Ask Him to save you right now by coming into your life.
If you do ask the Lord to be your Savior, you actually become part of His family. What a wonderful blessing to know Him and to realize the joy that He alone can give to you! If you have prayed to ask Christ to be your Savior, please free to contact me at PastorMJP@aol.com. I would be very pleased to help you get started in your new life.
Yes, please use this and any of the material on my website to share with your family and friends. You do not have to ask permission. I want you to use anything to reach your loved ones with God’s great news.
(References are taken from the New King James Version © Thomas Nelson, Inc.)