and He asked you why you should be admitted into His heaven, what would you say? Not certain? Then let us explore the answer to that question!!!
Heaven or eternal life is a free gift that is based on the GRACE of GOD. A free gift means that Heaven cannot be earned or deserved. The GRACE of GOD refers to the active provision of that free gift to you! "For by grace are you saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, that any man should boast." (Ephesians 2:8-9)
GOD loves you and wants you to have this free gift of eternal life in Heaven! By his free choice man sinned against God and brought sin into the human race. "For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God." (Romans 3:23)
Man was created by the special act of God, in His own image, and is the crowning work of His creation. In the beginning man was innocent of sin and was endowed by His Creator with freedom of choice. By his free choice man sinned against God and brought sin into the human race. Through the temptation of Satan man transgressed the command of God, and fell from his original innocence; whereby his posterity inherited a nature and an environment inclined toward sin, and as soon as they are capable of moral action become transgressors and are under condemnation. Only the grace of God can bring man into His holy fellowship and enable man to fulfill the creative purpose of God. The sacredness of human personality is evident in that God created man in His own image, and in that Christ died for man. Man cannot save himself by good works or any other means.
SALVATION is God's way of dealing with sin and providing a means for man to receive eternal life in Heaven. "Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us." (Titus 3:5)
Salvation by definition means a preservation or deliverance from evil or difficulty. In this sense a deliverance from sin and it's penalty. "The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance." (2 Peter 3:9)
Salvation means the full redemption of whole man. To redeem is to buy back something. God paid the ransom to himself in order to satisfy the demands of his holy, righteous nature. This he did through Jesus' death and resurrection. "God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself." (2 Cor. 5:19)
On the cross Jesus Christ made the once-for-all sacrifice for the sins of men. "Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us." (Heb. 9:12)
This salvation was and is offered to believers on God's initiative as an expression of his love for sinners. "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." (John 3:16)
This everlasting or eternal life is not a life that begins after death. It is that quality of life which is eternal, beginning the moment one believes in Jesus and continuing in eternity.
Personal faith in Christ is the answer. Jesus says to you, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life: no one comes to the Father, but through Me." (John 14:6)
What does personal faith mean? Repentance and faith are inseparable experiences of grace. Repentance is a genuine turning from sin toward God. Faith is the acceptance of Jesus Christ and commitment of the entire personality to Him as Lord and Savior. God in turn responds to this commitment by absolving you of all sin by the work of Jesus Christ on the Cross. This justification is God's gracious and full acquittal upon principles of His righteousness of all sinners who repent and believe in Christ. Justification brings the believer into a relationship of peace and favor with God.
"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)
"But as many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the children of God, even to them that believe on His Name." (John 1:12)
"Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be save ..." (Acts 16:31)
"Whoever will call upon the name of the Lord will be saved." (Romans 10:13)
To express your person faith in Christ, here is a suggested prayer to help you express the desire of your heart:
"GOD, thank you for your gift of eternal life. I know that I am a sinner and that I cannot save myself. I am willing to turn from my sins (repent). I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, that He died for my sins on the Cross, and that He rose from the dead. I now put my complete trust in you alone Lord Jesus as my Savior and for eternal life. I invite You to come into my heart and life. Thank you for saving me. In Jesus' name, Amen."
Pray this prayer now. If you sincerely prayed as instructed above, you are a child of GOD with eternal life in Heaven awaiting you!
The question may arise: How do I know for sure that I have eternal life? Answer: GOD SAYS SO and GOD DOES NOT LIE! Do not trust in your feelings but trust GOD now for the truth in His word, the Bible, and His absolute integrity, and righteousness of His character.
"And the witness is this, that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. He who has the Son of God has the life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have the life. These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God; in order that you may know that you have eternal life. And this is the confidence which we have before Him, that, if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests which we have asked from Him." (I John 5:11-15)
The next question that comes is "Now what do I do next that I am now a new Christian?"
First, God's Word in the Bible instructs us to find a church which teaches the Bible where you can learn the Word of God and fellowship with other Christians. "Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful; and let us consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds, not forsaking our own assembling together..." (Hebrews 10:23-25)
Second, you should make a public confession of your faith before men. "Everyone therefore who shall confess me before men, I will also confess him before My Father who is in heaven." (Matthew 10:32)
"...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." (Romans 10:9-10)
Finally,You should be baptized in obedience to Jesus Christ and as a testimony to your faith...
"And Jesus came up and spoke to them, saying, 'All authority has been given to me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age." (Matthew 28:18-20)
*If you need help understanding any of the steps to salvation please call or email Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary.