Ask Yourself these two questions, and be honest…
- Have you come to a place in your spiritual life where you know for certain that if you were to die today you would go to heaven, or is that something you would say you’re still working on?
- Suppose that you were to die today and stand before God and He were to say to you, “Why should I let you into my heaven?” What would you say
The Bible says that we can know for certain that we will go to heaven, but it’s not based on who we are or what we have done, or the amount of “good” things we have done to help others.
1. God is Holy – There is no one Holy like the Lord. (1 Samuel 2:2)
Everything must start with the Holiness of God. Without this starting point we
will have the wrong understanding of who God is. The term holy which means “separation”. God is separate from all that is unholy. He is perfect and nothing else is.
2. We fall short of God – For all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. (Romans 3:23)
It is essential that people understand that though they are good in their own eyes or even in the eyes of others, they fall short of a Holy God. No one is perfect, no one is without error, and yet since God is perfect, we have a problem when we measure ourselves to Him. We fall short.
3. Separation – Our Sins have separated us from God. (Isaiah 59:2)
God is perfect and we are not. God must be separated from all that is unholy and that is us. There exists an immeasurable and incomprehensible gulf between the unsaved man and the Holy God. We are separated because of our two different natures. And this separation leads to consequences.
4. The Options – For the wages of sin is death but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 6:23)
Our lives, like everyone else’s, have been full of sin. And the result or “wage” for what we deserve for that life is eternal death. Since a Holy God can not accept us as we are, we simply get what we have worked for; the wages for our sin is death. A ”gift” however, is something you receive for free and do not deserve. A gift is unexpected and not based upon work or effort. God’s gift to us is eternal life, though we neither earned it nor deserve it; it is truly a gift.
5. The Gift – Jesus Christ came into the world to save sinners. (1 Timothy 1:15)
Jesus Christ came not to introduce a new religion but to provide the gift we need to save us from the consequences or wage that we deserve and are headed for. He came to save us from the eternal separation from God and the wrath we deserve for violating His holiness. This is where we can say “God is Love”. He loves us enough to provide a way out of the fate we deserve.
6. The Call – Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out. (Acts 3:19)
Humanly, we are called to respond to this message by repentance. Repentance is much more than having sorrow over our sin, it is much more than “asking Jesus into our hearts”. It is an acknowledgment of our sin and God’s Holiness. It is an acknowledgment of the wrath we deserve, and the punishment that goes along with it.
Repentance is a plea to God for mercy, and a realization that unless we are covered in the blood of Christ we are doomed. Look at the other verses that call us to repentance.
7. Basis of Salvation – He saved us, not by the righteous things we have done, but because of His mercy. (Titus 3:5, 6)
Our salvation is not based upon what we have done, for we have done nothing. It is wholly a work of God, from the initial enlightening of the Holy Spirit and His conviction to the act of repentance. Our salvation is based upon the fact that God has had mercy upon us when we did not deserve it. Mercy is a term used to describe an act of compassion upon something that can not help itself. Salvation in our lives is the greatest act of God’s mercy.
8. The Family Privilege – But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become the children of God. (John 1:12)
God has given us privileges, the greatest being our right to become part of His family. We have been adopted into the family of God and have received with it all the rights and privileges of sonship; our new heavenly home, and the continual leading and guiding us.
9. The Assurance – These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life. (1 John 5:13)