JESUS! Love Him or hate Him, accept Him or reject Him, everyone must and will respond to Jesus! Some will do their best to work their way through life without Him and never think twice. Others will give Him the occasional Sunday nod at some church service somewhere. But there are those who make the radical decision to FOLLOW Him – to order their entire lives around Him; to anchor their eternal hope in Him. Have you ever wondered why some people choose to follow Jesus?
It’s really quite simple. We follow Jesus because in Jesus we have found NEW LIFE! This is what separates Him from all other religions in the world. Jesus didn’t offer a list of things to do so that we might find God. He did not come with advice on how to live a better life. He came to GIVE to us entirely new life! Life that, according to the Bible, lasts forever! Life that, according to the Bible, is full of meaning, purpose, and significance! Jesus said “I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly (to the fullest).” And the beautiful truth is that Jesus offers this new life to everyone, and it’s absolutely free! There is nothing you or I have to do to earn it! Everything that needed to be done has already been done by Christ Himself! In Jesus Christ there is brand new life that is FOREVER, FULL, and FREE to all who choose to follow Him!
But let’s be honest…most people are not experiencing the full and meaningful life that Christ offers. Why is that? The simple answer is that we all attempt to do life without Christ. Whenever we do life apart from God we cannot expect to enjoy the life that only God gives. The Bible refers to this as SIN. Everyone’s heard of sin. It is as much a part of humanity as breathing. It’s like a deadly virus that has plagued every individual of all time. It just comes naturally for us. If we’re honest we know that at our core we each have a natural tendency to be self-centered rather than God-centered. This is what the Bible means when it speaks of sin. The Bible puts it this way:
For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; (Romans 3:23)
Fallen short is the way that God sees our sin. His standard is perfection and no matter how hard we try we simply cannot be perfect. Whether we sin just once, or a thousand times, we all fall short of God’s standard.
As much as God loves us, He absolutely hates sin. He cannot be around it, nor can He tolerate it. His nature demands that He punish sin.
God says that our SIN has earned us DEATH. Our sins have earned us eternal separation from God. They have created for us a debt that we cannot afford to pay. And no amount of good we do can remove our sin or its penalty.
God could have allowed us to take our own punishment for our own sin. Instead, He sent His PERFECT Son to take our place and our punishment. Jesus died as our SUBSTITUTE. The Bible teaches that JESUS DIED IN OUR PLACE, and that HE ROSE from the grave three days later to prove that He had conquered death and pleased God. There’s not a sin that you have committed in your past or could commit in your future that Jesus did not suffer for. He died to pay our sin debt. He died so that you and I could experience forgiveness of sin, abundant life here, and everlasting life in heaven. By dying in our place Jesus satisfied God’s wrath against our sin forever.
Jesus purchased for us the gift of eternal life.
…the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. (Romans 6:23)
A gift is free because someone else already paid for it. The gift is eternal life, and Jesus Christ paid the price for it.
Like any gift, this new life must be RECEIVED. Jesus said:
…He that believeth on me hath everlasting life. (John 6:47)
To receive this gift you and I must believe – or TRUST in Christ. God is asking us to trust in a PERSON – JESUS CHRIST – to save us. Trusting in anything else, whether it is our good behavior, or being a member of a church, or even baptism will cause us to miss out on this new life. Trusting in Christ plus the good that we do won’t even cut it. We must trust Christ alone as our only hope for forgiveness and eternal life. The moment we do He gives to us the gift of ETERNAL LIFE.
If you TRUST in Christ alone for salvation you are stating that you believe that what Jesus Christ did on the cross (DIED AND ROSE AGAIN) is the ONLY basis on which you can receive forgiveness, enjoy abundant life, and have everlasting life. You have agreed with God and accepted Christ’s payment for your sin.
Right now you can place your trust in Christ alone to save you. You can tell God in a simple prayer that you know you are a sinner, and that nothing you can do can earn new life or heaven. You can tell Him that you believe Jesus did everything necessary by dying for you and rising again – that Jesus paid the price for your sin – and you trust CHRIST ALONE.
If you have taken this step, then Jesus Christ has given you new life! This is only the beginning. Now the adventure has truly begun. It’s time to start growing as a follower of Christ! Here are some simple things to help you get started:
- MEMORIZE John 5:24 which says, Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life. This verse ASSURES you that you now have eternal life because you have trusted in Christ alone!
- READ YOUR BIBLE EVERY DAY. Start with the Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John) and learn all about Jesus you can!
- PRAY DAILY. Prayer is nothing more than talking to God. You can pray anytime, even when you sin or fail.
- ATTEND A BIBLE TEACHING CHURCH. God has created communities of faith where people who have made this same decision to follow Christ gather to strengthen and encourage one another.
- TELL SOMEONE. Others would be thrilled to know that you have trusted in Christ alone and are now one of His followers.
If you haven’t taken this step, but would like to consider it more, please feel free to contact us. We want to be able to help in any way we can.