If you died right now, do you know if you would go to heaven?
The important question is not whether you are a church member, or if you live a clean life and do the best you can. If you cannot answer ‘yes’ to the above question, then God has sent this message to you. Please read it over and over, praying, until it is clear and you are sure.
You do not intend to be lost forever. You mean to make preparation for the other world before you die, don’t you? Why not now? [2 Corinthians 6:2; Proverbs 27:1; Luke 12:20]
Do you want to know?
There is no need to read any further unless you really want to be saved. But you do want to have this assurance, don’t you?
Are you willing to do what God tells you to do?
“If any man will do his will, he shall know of the doctrine [teaching], whether it be of God, or whether I speak of myself.” (John 7:17)
Please think this over, then pray this prayer:
“O God, I want to be saved. I want to know that I will go to Heaven. I ask You, according to Your promise, to give me understanding. I am willing to do what You tell me to do to be saved.”
Having committed yourself to do what God says, now let Him speak to you through His Word. Here are the facts that you must know and what you must do to be saved.
First, you must realize that…
You are a sinner.
“There is none righteous, no not one…. For all have sinned,
and come short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3:10, 23)
If all have sinned, then I am a sinner and you are a sinner. Our very nature is such that a holy God cannot admit us into His presence as we were born. You must be born again, made anew by a power not your own, but by the supernatural power of God. [John 3:3-7] No one has committed so few sins but that he or she doesn’t need to be saved, and no one has committed so many sins but that he or she cannot be saved. You do realize that you are a sinner, don’t you?
Then, the next fact to consider is that…
The wages of sin is death.
“The wages of sin is death.” (Romans 6:23)
When Adam sinned, he died, yet he kept on living! [Genesis 2:17, 3:6,7] This shows that death does not mean to go out of existence, nor that it is merely the death of the body. Death of the body is one result of that spiritual death, but the real meaning of death is separation. Adam was separated from God; he lost fellowship, spiritual life, everything, and became subject to eternal death, and that death sentence was passed on to all of us like a deadly disease. [Romans 5:12] This means that if one lives his life in sin and dies without being born again, he will be separated from God forever. That is hell, the second death. [Luke 16:24; Matthew 25:41, 46; Revelation 21:8] Do not stop to reason on man’s opinions about hell—let God speak to you! You do not want to go where there is no light, no water, and be eternally separated from God and all that is good and beautiful, do you? You do not have to. God has provided a way of escape.
Now we have come to the good news!
Jesus paid those wages for you.
“But God commendeth his love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:8)
When Jesus was on the cross, He suffered the agony of Hell for you and me. He was separated from God the Father: “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” [Matthew 27:46] In that awful moment, He was banished from God’s presence because He had your sins and mine on Him! Remember, the wages of sin is death, and death is separation. Jesus paid those wages for you. That is why we sing,
“Jesus paid it all,
All to Him I owe,
Sin had left a crimson stain,
He washed it white as snow.”
You do want to be saved, don’t you? Then the next important fact to consider is that, “The gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” [Romans 6:23] A gift is something you do not work for. Therefore, you cannot earn your salvation by doing good works, such as joining the church, being baptized, deeds of charity, etc. Those are good works the Christians do, but good works are the result of salvation, not the cause of it. [Ephesians 2:8-10] You may want to avoid the mistake that so many people make of trying to ‘save yourself’ by works. Salvation is a gift given to you when you receive Christ. [John 1:12] The only thing you can do with a gift is accept it or reject it. You want this gift, don’t you? So, how do you accept it? As one man in the Bible asked: “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” [Acts 16:30]
What to do to be saved:
There are two commandments in the Bible for the sinner to obey in order to be saved. They are not outward deeds, but one decision of the heart and mind. You can obey these two commandments without moving a muscle! These commandments are: repent and believe.
“Repent ye, therefore, and be converted [turn], that your sins may be blotted out.” [Acts 3:19] To repent is to confess that you are a sinner, turn from sin to God and pray to Him for mercy and forgiveness through the blood of His Son, Jesus Christ. [Luke 18:13; Romans 3:25] You remember how you have told your parents you were sorry and asked forgiveness, or how you made up to a friend you had wronged, don’t you? Well, you have done wrong before God, and you must “square” things with Him. You must be willing to run from sin (be converted), but you cannot do this on your own power—that is where faith (believing) comes in.
“Sirs, what must I do to be saved? And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved.” [Acts 16:30,31] You must not only believe facts about Him, you must believe on Him. By illustration, it is not enough to believe facts about a doctor. If a doctor saves your life when you have had a serious illness, you must trust him with your life. And you do not help him, you simply submit to him, don’t you? Saving faith, then, is to receive Jesus Christ [John 1:12] , to trust Him to take you to Heaven, and believe that He will. Once you put your soul into His hands, you are His responsibility. He takes your sin, and you take His righteousness [2 Corinthians 5:21]. You will then become God’s child, born again by His Spirit, sealed forever! [Ephesians 1:13; 4:30] You will then be saved—and saved means “to be made safe.”
Please consider this question very carefully…
Do you believe that if you called upon the Lord, He would save you?
“For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” (Romans 10:13)
Whosoever means you—just put your name there. This is a crucial moment. Do you believe God’s promise? It will do no good to pray to Him unless you believe Him, and He will do just what He says.
You must not wait for a feeling—you must believe. You must believe that you will possess eternal life the very moment you claim God’s promise here in Romans 10:13. My feeling of security and joy (boundless joy!) comes from the knowledge that I possess eternal life, based on God’s promise. You do believe God’s promises, don’t you?
If you do, then…
Will you call upon the Lord now, and ask Him to save you?
Is there any reason why you should not accept Christ as your Savior now? Not one, is there? Then, bow your head and pray this prayer:
“Dear God, I confess that I am a sinner. I am sorry for my sin, and ask You for mercy and forgiveness through the blood of Your Son, Jesus. I believe He died for me and rose again. I now accept Him as my Savior. I believe Your promise, that from this moment on, according to Your Word, I will be Your child and You will reserve a home in Heaven for me. Thank you, Lord, for saving me. In Jesus’ name, Amen.”
God said that if you would call on His name He would save you, didn’t He? Do you believe what He said? Did you call upon Him and ask Him to save you? Then according to God’s Word, did He save you?
How do you answer now?
Now, if you should die, do you know that you would go to Heaven? It’s different, now, isn’t it?
Growing in Grace:
If you are a new believer, you probably have a lot of questions! What should you do next? How can you learn more? Where can you find answers? This quick guide will focus on four important things every new believer should do: a) read your Bible, b) pray, c) spend time with other believers, and d) share your faith.
Reading Your Bible:
Make a commitment to read your Bible every day! How much you read depends on you, but it is essential that you spend time reading and thinking about God’s Word.
Until you spend time with the Bible, everything you know about God and His plan for you will be second-hand. You will have to rely on other people for answers. Once you start reading the Bible, though, that will change. In time, you will learn more and more about the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, and you will grow in understanding and spiritual maturity.
Of course, when you begin there will be some things you read that you just don’t understand. As a matter of fact, some of those things can only be understood as the Spirit gives wisdom. But there are a lot of things in the Bible you won’t understand simply because you aren’t used to reading it! So the more time you spend with God’s Word, the more you’ll comprehend. You’ll be surprised by how much progress you make once you commit to regular reading.
In addition to reading your Bible every day, you should make a habit of daily prayer—in fact, you should always be in a state of prayer, communicating with God all the time. This doesn’t have to be a stuffy, formal entreaty! Talking to God is as easy as talking to a friend; in fact, it’s easier, because God knows you so well.
Think of it: the all-powerful God of the universe wants to commune with you. He loves you so much that He takes daily interest in your life. Share your thoughts with him. Bring your needs before His throne. Trust Him to provide.
At Santa Fe Baptist, we are convinced that one of the main reasons God has blessed us over the years is, we have gone to Him in prayer and sought His will. As a believer, you can pray with confidence. God gave His Son for you, so you know He will listen to you and give you what is best!
Spending Time with Christians:
Believers join together for two important experiences: worship and fellowship. We worship God because He is so worthy of our praise. As Creator and Redeemer, He has made us and re-made us—and so we sing songs about Him, we listen as His Word is preached, and we give freely of our time, talents and resources to help the body of Christ.
We fellowship with one another because we know that it is important to surround ourselves with people who believe in Jesus and want to please and honor Him. In the world, there are many temptations, and it is sometimes difficult for new believers to break free of the sin that has habitually enslaved them. Surrounding yourself with other Christians and learning from their experience and example will help you grow!
In addition to our three worship services during the week, Santa Fe Baptist provides many opportunities for you to meet fellow Christians and spend time getting to know them. Get involved in activities like Sunday School, Choir, or one of our weekly Bible Studies to make new friends!
Sharing Your Faith:
Aren’t you glad someone told you about Jesus Christ? As a Christian, you have the privilege of sharing the gospel with other people. It’s really very easy to share your faith. All you have to do is think about what God has done for you, and then tell your story. We call this story your “testimony.”
The gospel is very simple. Here it is in a nutshell: “All men are sinners, and the penalty of sin is death. But Jesus has paid that penalty for those who believe. So, if a person repents of sin and believes in Jesus Christ, he or she will inherit eternal life.” For a more detailed explanation, see What’s Your Answer?
Who should you share your faith with? The answer is everyone! If you are open, God will give you opportunities to tell your story to all kinds of people. Sometimes you may feel a little nervous but remember: it’s not up to you to save people. Jesus has commanded us to proclaim the Good News, and the Holy Spirit uses our words to bring people to faith. Witnessing is not a burden—it’s a privilege we have because God has been so merciful and loving to us!