• johned@aibi.ph

How to Become A Christian

(Matthew 7:7 NKJV)"Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you."

This is the basic secret of becoming a Christian - you have to want to follow Jesus. I can't make you follow Jesus, no-one can. Its between you and God. In your seeking there are a few facts that make the journey a whole lot easier and quicker.

We call this set of facts "the good news of Jesus Christ" or "the gospel" for short. This article is about the gospel and attempts to give you a few facts to help you believe.

Fact 1. Everyone, absolutely everyone has fallen short of God's glorious holy standards for their lives. You might not have murdered but you probably have lied. You may not have slept with someone else's wife or husband - but you probably have hated someone or been unjust or cruel. Sin is not just sexual sin or murder, it includes being greedy, jealous, and envious. It includes our thought life too! All that we think in our imaginations is known to God. That is why Paul the apostle can write: (Romans 3:23 NKJV) "for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God". All includes me and it also includes you.

Fact Two: God is holy and just therefore He punishes sin. The Bible says: (Romans 6:23 NKJV) "For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord." Sin carries the death penalty. There are two kinds of death referred to in the Bible - physical death and eternal spiritual death. Eternal spiritual death means going into torment in Hell forever and ever, it means separation from God, from goodness, from truth, from sanity, from happiness and light. It is eternal torment and disintegration. When we refuse to follow God and obey Him we are rebelling against our Creator and the Source of Life. If we rebel against the Creator it is us who lose. It is God who sustains us, not the other way around! When we tell the Source of Life to stay away from our life and not to interfere we are actually saying "don't supply me with life". To sin, to disobey God, is to attack ourselves in the long run. Its like speeding - fun until you have to stand before the Judge. Unfortunately the sentence for a life of sin is not a speeding ticket - it is eternal death.

Fact Three: Jesus took our punishment for sin when He died upon the Cross. God prepared a way for sin could be dealt with - through special sacrifices. In the Jewish sacrificial system this was a perfect animal without spot or blemish. Jesus was sinless and was the perfect sacrifice for all the sins of all people for all time. The Bible tells us that God saw that everyone had sinned and was in danger of Hell. He decided to rescue them by sending Jesus to die instead of them. Jesus died on the cross went down into the world of the dead, took our punishment fully and was raised from the dead three days later. Our sins were "nailed to the cross" and dealt with when Jesus died.

(Romans 5:8 NKJV) But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

Anyone who believes in Him can now have their sins forgiven because Jesus' sacrifice has provided forgiveness for everyone who wants it. Some people are too proud to want God's forgiveness. They think they can get to Heaven without the help of Jesus. But as we saw before they can't- because they, like you and I, are guilty before God. And the thing about guilt is that it takes only one crime to make you guilty and deserving of punishment. A thief cannot say "but I did not kill" and a murderer cannot say "I did not steal" - their one crime makes them guilty. So it only takes one sin to make us guilty before God and no-one can say they are good enough for heaven. We all need to accept what Jesus did for us and say thank you to God for it if we are to become true Christians.

Fact Four: The way to become a Christian is by living by two key truths. These key truths are that Jesus Christ is Lord and that He rose from the dead. The first says that He is boss of your life, of your family, and even of the government. Jesus Christ is the "ultimate authority" ; He must be obeyed. So when you read the Bible and see a commandment of Jesus you must do it. Once you become a Christian you are like a soldier under the command of Jesus Christ. However His commands are not petty or small-minded. His commands are life-giving, true and the way to salvation and a fulfilling life. Jesus says "My yoke is easy and my burden is light." Being a Christian is not meant to be an impossible struggle but a joyful celebtarion of life. The second thing we have to live by is that Jesus Christ rose from the dead. This means that we accept that He lived (how else did He die?), that He died (how else did he rise from the dead?), and that God raised Him from the dead on the third day. This means that we too will be raised from the dead to have a life that both lasts for eternity and shares the joy of heaven. The Bible states why we have to believe these things as follows:

(Romans 10:9-13 NKJV) that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. {10} For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. {11} For the Scripture says, "Whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame." {12} For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek, for the same Lord over all is rich to all who call upon Him. {13} For "whoever calls on the name of the LORD shall be saved."

A Prayer For Those Who Would Like To Become Christians

If you would like to become a Christian then please pray the following prayer:

Dear God, I would like to become a Christian. I know that I have not lived as you want me to. I know I need you to forgive me for all the sins I have done. I ask that you will please forgive me because of what Jesus did on the cross. I believe He died on that cross to take my sins and that You raised Him from the dead. I want to have eternal life from God so that I can follow Jesus and obey Him forever as my Lord. Please make me a Christian now. Amen.

Some Help Along The Way...

I have put together some concise studies covering the basics of the Christian life. They are interdenominational in nature and focus on the central truths of the Christian faith. They build from one to the next and are best taken in order, they cover:

1. How To Be Sure You Really Are A Christian
2. How To Read The Bible
3. How To Pray
4. What Is God Like?
5. What Has Happened To Me?
6. Meeting God's People
7. Breaking Free From Sin
8. What About Heaven and Hell?
9. What About My Friends?
10. Loving Your Neighbour

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