The Need for Jesus – Taking the Next Step
- 2005 7 Apr
THE PROBLEM: Holy God and sinful man.
"For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God" (Romans 3:23).
"The wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord" (Romans 6:23).
The word "sin" is used in a lot of ways, but the essential meaning and result of sin is separation from God, since it involves pride -- man thinking more highly of his own ways than God's. Without Jesus, His sacrifice and resurrection, connecting to God is not possible because of sin. We all have sinned, the results of which are death and an eternity separated from God. Since God is Holy, there can be no imperfection in His presence.
But death was not God's plan for us. Abundant and eternal life (John 10:10) is what Jesus came to bring.
Why? Because even though man was broken and earth given over to evil, God never stopped loving us. Romans 5:8 says, "But God showed His great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners."
THE RE-CONNECTION TO GOD
Nothing but Jesus could have permanently fixed the problem - it was a gap that could not be bridged. Your best work just can't get you to Heaven. Even if you could somehow achieve a score of 99 out of 100 in life, you'd still need a sacrificial savior to make up the difference and pay off your debt. That's the difference between Grace and the Law. James 2:10 says, "For whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles in one point, he has become guilty of all."
However, "God saved you by His special favor when you believed. And you can't take credit for this; it is a gift from God. Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done, so none of us can boast about it." (Ephesians 2:8-9). You can't earn a gift - it's an unmerited favor. You do, however, have to make the choice to accept it.
Faith is the key. It's the cause and effect of our hope for salvation. If there is truly "no other name under heaven that has been given among men, by which we must be saved" (Acts 4:12), then your acceptance of God's gift, your admission that you are a sinner, your repentance (changing of your mind), and your faith in the real-but-unseen Lord is all that can bring eternal and abundant life.
If knowing about Jesus has stirred your heart to hear even more, receive forgiveness for your sins, renew your Christian walk, or get involved in ministry, you may pray the following prayer, and/or follow the links below to any of our excellent ministry partners:
"Lord God, thank you for loving me enough to send your one and only Son to die for me. I know I am a sinner, and that Jesus was crucified and raised to life to pay a debt I was unable to pay, in order that I may live with You forever. I want to turn from my way of life and follow Jesus. I invite Jesus into my heart as the Lord of my life. Thank you, Father, for giving me new life in the name of Jesus. Amen!"
What's the next step? Connect with other Christians, learn more, find a church… these ministries can help you with those concerns!
The complete list of Salem Web Network Ministry Partners
- Harvest Ministries: How to Know God
- Harvest Christian Fellowship: How to Know God
- Answers with Bayless Conley: What To Do Next
- Christian Research Institute: The Essentials of Salvation
- Grace to You: How Can I Be Sure of My Salvation?
- PowerPoint: Your New Life in Christ
- Use FindAChurch.com