First Baptist Church Surfside Beach
Thursday, September 18, 2014
How To Get To Heaven
Becoming A Christian
If you were to stand before God right now, and He asked you, "Why should I let you into My Heaven?", what answer would you give Him? Would it be about how good you are, or how you haven't sinned very much (or not as much or greatly as others)? Here's some of what the Bible says about us, our relationship to God, and how to be able to spend eternity in Heaven:
1. All of us have sinned.
"For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God." - Romans 3:23
"If we say that we have no sin we deceive ourselves," and "If we say we have not sinned we make God a liar," - 1 John 1:8, 10
"There is not a righteous man on earth who continually does good and never sins." - Ecclesiastes 7:20
"... there is no man who does not sin..." - 1 Kings 8:46
"There is none righteous, no, not one." - Romans 3:10
"Therefore, just as through one man sin entered into the world, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men, because all sinned." - Romans 5:12
2. We all face God's judgment for our sin.
"For the wages of sin is death." - Romans 6:23a
"It is appointed unto men once to die, and after this comes judgment." - Hebrews 9:27
"For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may be recompensed for his deeds in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad." - 2 Corinthians 5:10
"Do not marvel at this. For an hour is coming in which all who are in the tombs shall hear His voice, and shall come forth, those who did the good deeds to a resurrection of life, those who committed the evil deeds to a resurrection of judgment." - John 5:28-29
"There shall certainly be a resurrection of both the righteous and the wicked." - Acts 24:15
"But because of your stubbornness and unrepentant heart you are storing up wrath for yourself in the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God, who will render to every man according to his deeds." - Romans 2:5-6
3. But God loves us and offered His Son, Jesus Christ, to pay for our sins.
"By this the love of God was revealed to us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world so that we might live through Him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that He loved us, and sent His Son to be the payment for our sins." - 1 John 4:9-10
"For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life." - John 3:16
"God demonstrated His own love toward us in that while were were yet sinners Christ died for us." - Romans 5:8
4. God's offer is only available through Jesus Christ.
"I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except by Me." - John 14:6
"And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men by which we must be saved." - Acts 4:12
"I am the door. If anyone enters through Me, he shall be saved." - John 10:9
"And it shall be that everyone who calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved." - Acts 2:21
"For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus." - 1 Timothy 2:5
"For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world should be saved through Him." - John 3:17
5. His forgiveness cannot be earned, but is offered as a free gift to all who will accept it by faith.
"But the free gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ, our Lord." - Romans 6:23b
"For by grace you are saved, through faith. And that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God, not as a result of works, lest anyone should boast." - Ephesians 2:8-9
He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewing by the Holy Spirit." - Titus 3:5
"These things have been written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing you may have life in His name." - John 20:31
God loves all of us more than we can imagine. He has demonstrated His love to us by sending His Son, Jesus Christ, to pay the penalty for our sins and offer us salvation and forgiveness. We must accept what the Bible says about our sin--that we have sinned and deserve the punishment for doing so, admit to God that we are sinners, and turn to God for the forgiveness He provides through His Son, Jesus Christ.
Each of us has a choice to make.
Either we have sinned or we haven't. If we think we have not sinned, we are fooling ourselves. We and God both know better. We have deliberately chosen to do things we know are wrong. These are sins. Either God will judge us for our sins or He won't. If he doesn't, we don't really have a problem. But if He does, (and the Bible says He will), we may want to consider how to escape His wrath and avoid the eternal penalty for our sins.
Either we have to pay for our sins or we have to accept God's payment for our sins. Jesus Christ, God's Son, came to earth, lived a sinless life, died on the Cross, and rose again on the third day, as God's only acceptable payment for our sins. If we try to pay for our sins ourselves, through things like good works, rules, or religion, we can never do it perfectly, or never completely enough to pay for them all. We must accept Jesus' sacrifice as the complete payment for our sins to be perfectly and completely forgiven.
Either we accept God's free gift of salvation or we reject it. We cannot earn God's forgiveness, we can only receive it as a gift. Salvation is not God paying us back for what we have done for Him. It is God giving us something we couldn't earn and do not deserve. It is Him showing His grace and mercy to us. We either take His offer of grace or we refuse it.
The choice is before you.
A. Agree with God and be willing to Admit to Him that you have sinned.
B. Believe that Jesus Christ is God's Son and that Jesus died on the Cross and rose from the grave to pay for your sins. Be willing to turn from your sins (repent).
C. Commit your life to Jesus as your Savior and Lord. Call upon Him for forgiveness.
If God is dealing with your heart about this matter, pray to Him something like this:
Dear God. I know I am a sinner and that I deserve Your punishment. I'm sorry for sinning against You and am willing to turn from my sin. Please forgive me. I believe that Jesus is your Son and that He died on the Cross and rose from the dead for me so that my sin could be completely paid for. I want Jesus to come into my life and be my Lord and Savior. I commit my life to Him. Amen.
If you prayed a prayer like that please do the following:
1. Please understand that if you meant what you said, God meant what He said and He has saved you.
"If you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you shall be saved. For with the heart man believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation. For whoever will call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved." - Romans 10:9,10,13
"The one who comes to Me I will certainly not cast out." - John 6:37b
2. Email or contact us by one of the methods below and let us know that you have made this decision. We would like to give you more information and rejoice with you.
3. Let us help you find a Bible believing church you can attend in your area. You need to follow the Lord in Believer's Baptism, and join a group that believes and teaches the Bible so that you can grow in your faith.
4. Share your decision with your friends, family, and others close to you. You can direct them to this page or have them contact us for more information.
Thanks for taking the time to find out more about becoming a Christian. If you already are one, you know how life-changing it is to know Christ. If you just became one, you have just begun an exciting new eternal life and walk with God.