There is nothing more important than
Explaining Salvation to others .
Note we also have pages called
There is nothing more important than making sure:
You are right with God!
And those you love are right with God!
For those who have heard me teach this, you may also want to
read the Bible devotion that I shared before I started the
teaching. The title is Trusting God.
God wants us to listen to him and take his Word - the Bible - seriously.
God wants us to trust that what he says is true even if it doesn’t make sense to us or seem to us to be true.
Proverbs 13:13 TLB says,
“Despise God's word
find yourself in trouble.
Obey it and succeed.”
Most people believe there is a God. And most people trust God's word – at least a little.
But the main question is:
Do you trust God enough to obey what he says?
Another vital question is:
Do you believe what God says about salvation?
Jesus tells us that we must be born again to get to heaven.
In John chapter 3 Jesus is talking to Nicodemus. In verse 5 Jesus said,
“Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”
Becoming born again means a person repents of his sins, and acknowledges that Jesus paid the price for his sins, and then he asks Jesus to be his Savior. In order to go to heaven, you must make Jesus your Savior….. but the Bible also tells us that – to be saved - you must also make Jesus your Lord.
Making Jesus your Lord
you try to obey what the Bible says.
Sometimes people do not understand what being born again is all about. Some people think all they have to do is say a prayer to God and believe that there is a God.
So some people think that they are going to heaven and they may not be.
Jesus tells us that there are people
who will think they are going
and they are not.
In Matthew 7:21 NKJV. Jesus said,
“Not everyone who says to Me, 'Lord, Lord,'
shall enter the kingdom of heaven,
but he who does the will of My father in heaven.
Many will say to Me in that day, 'Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?'
And then I will declare to them,
'I never knew you'
depart from Me you who practice lawlessness!'”
So Jesus tells us that being born again is more than good deeds.
Anyone can do good deeds.
And Jesus said that just calling him “Lord” - is not enough.
We need to make him Lord of our life.
We are saved by Faith and not by Works.
But if we ARE saved,
We will change and we have works.
We are saved by faith and not by works. But works are the evidence that we truly are born again.
If there is no change in our behavior, we need to be alarmed.
How can anyone follow Jesus and not change?
To be born again means that we become spiritually alive.
When we are spiritually alive, we begin to act more and more like Jesus.
In the book of James , the Bible explains
to us that
Faith without works is dead .
When we are truly born
again, we become spiritually alive…..
and we will show that we are spiritually alive
by becoming more and more obedient to the word of God
BUT if we have no works then
we need to be concerned that something is wrong.
1 John 3:9-10a TLB explains it this way:
person who has been born into God’s family
does not make a practice of sinning,
because now God’s life is in him;
so he can’t keep on sinning
for this new life
has been born into him and controls him –
he has been born again.
So now we can tell who is a child of God
and who belongs to Satan.”
But if we do
1 John 1:9 tells us
that if we confess our sin, he is faithful
and just to forgive us our sin and cleanse us
from all unrighteousness.
When we get born again, our character begins to change.
When we are born again, we cannot keep doing the sins that we have always done.
Our character is not just who we are when people are watching but it is also who we are when no one is watching – no one but God is watching.
With some sins - such as an addiction, we become ensnared and it takes a process to get free of it. You may fall back into that sin while you are working to become strong in the Lord but all the while you are feeling God’s conviction, and you are seeking and working to be free of that sin.
This is where spiritual warfare comes in. We learn spiritual warfare techniques that will strengthen us against sin.
(Note that I have spiritual warfare prayers and teaching on my website.)
God helps us to renew our mind and as we renew our mind, we become stronger.
Renewing our Mind
God wants us to renew our mind by reading the Bible. When we renew our mind, we become stronger. And we begin to think like God and then we will want to please God in our own personal life by obeying the Bible.
Renewing our mind is a lifelong process. But if you haven’t changed since you were born again, then that is something to be concerned about.
After we are born again, we HEAR God convicting us of sin AND we will begin to respond to that conviction by changing our behavior. God gives us the power to change.
We learn how to actively come against sinning. We also begin to think ahead and keep ourselves from being put in certain circumstances. We learn to read and reread scripture about what we are struggling with so we can gain strength to overcome sin. We become a stronger Christian as God becomes our teacher through reading his word.
In Luke 14:27-28 NKJV- Jesus talks about salvation. Jesus says,
“And whoever does not bear
his cross and come after Me
cannot be My disciple.
For which of you intending to build a tower, does not sit down first and count the cost, whether he has enough to finish it.
“So likewise, whoever of you does not forsake all that he has cannot be My disciple.”
Luke 13:23-29 New Century Version
“Someone said to Jesus, “Lord, will only a few people be saved?”
Jesus said, “Try hard to enter
through the narrow door,
because many people will try to enter there,
but they will not be able.
When the owner of the house gets up and
closes the door,
you can stand outside and knock on the door
and say, ‘Sir, open the door for us.’
But he will answer, ‘I don’t know you or where you come from.’
Then you will say, ‘We ate and drank with you, and you taught in the streets of our town.’
But he will say to you, ‘I don’t know you or where you come from. Go away from me, all you who do evil!’
You will cry and grind your teeth with pain when you see Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and all the prophets in God’s kingdom, but you yourselves thrown outside.”
1 John 2:3-6 TLB says,
“And how can we be sure that we belong to God?
By looking within ourselves: are we really trying to do what he wants us to?
Someone may say, ‘I am a
Christian; I am on my way to heaven;
I belong to Christ.’
But if he doesn’t do what Christ tells him to, he is a liar.
But those who do what Christ tells them to will learn to love God more and more.
That is the way to know whether or not you are a Christian. Anyone who says he is a Christian should live as Christ did.”
Isaiah 55:6-7 NKJV instructs us,
“Seek God while he may be found. Call upon Him while He is Near. Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts; Let him return to the Lord. And He will have mercy on him and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon.”
So God is ready to forgive you when you repent and make Jesus your Savior AND your Lord. Being born again and making Jesus your Savior happens in one day. Making Jesus your Lord is something we need to do intentionally and continually.
Jesus explains it this way in Matthew 16:24-25 and also in Mark 8:34 and a third time in Luke 9:23.
Matthew 16:24-25 says, “Then Jesus said to His disciples, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow ME.”
Mark 8:34 says.....And he summoned the crowd with His disciples, and said to them, 'If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me.'”
Luke 9:23 says.....And He was saying to them all, 'If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross daily and follow Me.'”
All three verses say the same thing: Jesus said, “Pick up your cross and follow me.”
What does picking up your cross and following Jesus - really mean?
The Cross represents
It is the willingness to follow Jesus in your decisions and in your actions. It is a commitment to stay close to Jesus.
It is a firm commitment and dedication to follow – to obey - the Bible.
True Christians are seeking to obey God.
They do not live in sin.
They may sin but they do not live in sin or in other words, they do not justify sin or make a habit of sinning in an area of conduct. Instead, when God convicts them of sin, they turn away from sin.
If you rebelliously refuse to
repent and obey the Bible,
here is what God says to you:
“But those who keep on sinning are against God,
for every sin is done against the will of God.”
1 John 3:4 TLB
Then it goes on to say,
we stay close to him, obedient to him, we won’t be sinning either; but as for
those who keep on sinning, they should realize this: They sin because they have
never really known him
or become his.
Oh, dear children, don’t let
anyone deceive you about this:
if you are constantly doing what is good, it is because you
are good, even as he is.
But if you keep on sinning, it shows that you belong to Satan, who since he first began to sin has kept steadily at it. But the Son of God came to destroy these works of the devil.”
1 John 3:6-8 TLB
Think about your life.
Are you following Jesus?
Are you hearing God convicting you of sin?
Do you excuse sin or make a practice of sinning?
Are you seeking to please God by obeying his Word?
If you are not sure that you are saved, please give your life to Jesus today and say this prayer with me.
I hear you convicting me of sin. I know you want me to give my life to you. Today I am confessing that I have sinned and I believe that Jesus died on the cross for my sins. I accept Jesus….. as my Savior and my Lord. I give you my life to you. I WILL follow you.
(You might also like to visit our Salvation Prayer page.)
I rejoice with all of you who said that prayer! I'd love you to send me a note from my contact page and tell me that you prayed to receive Jesus as Savior and Lord.
If you have family who are not saved, make sure that they truly know the truth of what the Bible says about salvation.
Heaven is real, but
hell is also real.
Encourage those you love…. to draw closer to God and remind them to make sure they are saved - some people think that if they believe: there is a God who wrote the Bible then: they are saved. As the Bible says, "Even the demons believe that."
We have a new page called:
The New False Grace Message:
Note that many preachers and teachers are beginning to fall away from the true salvation message. Many call it the new grace message. Those who teach this message essentially say that it really doesn't matter if we continue to sin. They imply that today God really isn't all that upset about people sinning. They focus on teaching about the love of God and try to avoid all the multitude of verses that talk about God expecting us to try to obey him.
The False Grace message says FALSE things like:
The above words are a total twisting of the message of Jesus.
The false grace message teachers say or imply that we don't have to obey the commands and instructions in the Bible. Many even say that all the words of Jesus are not for us today because Jesus was just preaching to unsaved Jews and we are saved Gentiles and Jews. They use grace as an excuse to sin and tell people they don't have to stop living a sinful lifestyle.
BUT their words are not true.....God didn't send Jesus as our excuse to sin BUT instead, as our loving answer when we do sin - as we all do sin at times.
We must all be careful not to allow the wonderful grace of God to draw us to the conclusion that we can ignore all the commands of God that teach us to grow spiritually and that tell us to seek to turn away from sin.
I've had friends who have listened to the false grace message and as a result they have totally turned from the true Gospel. From my observation, once the false grace message gets hold of a person, it is hard for anyone to help that person see the truth again.
If you confront people who teach the false grace message,
they will assure you that they are not saying that sin is ok.
Yet everything they teach contradicts that.
Take notice that they are very uncomfortable when people talk about
the importance of obeying God.
This "falling away" was predicted in the Bible in many places:
Jude 1:3-4 AMP:
Beloved, my whole concern was to write to you in regard to our common salvation. [But] I found it necessary and was impelled to write you and urgently appeal to and exhort [you] to contend for the faith which was once for all handed down to the saints [the faith which is that sum of Christian belief which was delivered verbally to the holy people of God].
For certain men have crept in stealthily gaining entrance secretly by a side door. Their doom was predicted long ago, ungodly (impious, profane) persons who pervert the grace (the spiritual blessing and favor) of our God into lawlessness and wantonness and immorality, and disown and deny our sole Master and Lord, Jesus Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One)
Also see 2 Peter chapter 2.
Matthew 5:19 says, "Whoever therefore breaks one of the least of these commandments, and teaches men so shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever does and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven."
One final note:
What happens to those who never hear?
In the United States and in many countries around the world, there are ample opportunities to read a Bible and learn about the truth of Jesus Christ.
But some of you may wonder what happens to people who have never had a chance to know the truth about Jesus.
In Romans chapter one it tells us that the eternal future of those people is based on the knowledge they had.
That does not apply to those who have had the opportunity to read the Bible and just ignored that opportunity.
Seek the Lord while he may be found
Isaiah 55:6 NKJV
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