It’s my intention to present God’s Plan of Salvation in a clear and understandable manner. Understanding and believing in His plan is the most important undertaking any of us will ever face – it’s truly a matter of life and death!
God created ALL things. He created Adam and Eve to have fellowship with Him. Adam’s sin in the Garden of Eden caused all future generations to be born with sin. This means we are born with a sin nature which causes us to think, feel, and act in a manner outside of God’s perfect plan. This sin results in us being separated from God. The bible says:
All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. (Romans 3:23)
We can not go any further until we come to terms with this first step – we are ALL sinners. No matter how good we think we are, we must see our life as falling short of the perfection required by God. No one is “good enough” to go to Heaven.
Step 2: Our Sin Deserves Eternal Death.
We must understand and believe the consequences of being a sinner. The bible says:
The wages of sin is death. (Romans 6:23)
Wages refers to something we have earned – and we have earned death! This death is not referring to a physical death – we’re all going to physically die. The wages of our sin is a spiritual death – an eternal separation from God in a place commonly referred to as Hell. Before we can enter the gates of Heaven, we must have our sin removed – we must be made clean.
Step 3: We Must Desire To Be Clean – We Must Repent.
There is a basic assumption in God’s Plan – we must desire to enter Heaven! If we believe we have sin in our life which keeps us out of God’s presence, and if we truly desire to enter Heaven, we will desire to cleanse our life of sin. This desire to turn from our sin is called repentance.
But unless you repent, you too will all perish. (Luke 13:5)
Repent, and turn to God so that your sins may be wiped out. (Acts 3:19)
He does not want anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance. (2 Peter 3:9)
Many times, we will not have the ability or strength to actually leave the sin which has consumed us – this will come only as we turn our hearts toward God and accept the gift of Jesus Christ.
Step 4: We Can Not Make Ourselves Clean.
There is only one way to be made clean – that process is called Salvation. Salvation is a gift from God, freely given to all who ask – it can never be earned!
By grace you have been saved through faith – and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God – not as a result of works, so that no one can boast. (Ephesians 2:8-9)
Grace means “unmerited favor”. It means we are granted favor when we have done nothing to deserve such favor. We cannot rid our life of sin and all our “goodness” cannot bring us one step closer to Heaven.
This can be a difficult step. Many of us are so consumed with pride that it’s difficult to ask for help – but God requires us to humbly say: “I know I can never get there through my own effort. I’m lost without help to cleanse me of my sins.”
At this point, if our belief is real, we will be crying out to God to show us how to be made clean. We understand and believe we’re a sinner who deserves death. We desire to turn away from our sin but realize that nothing of our own effort can keep us from an eternal Hell. Fortunately, God has a wonderful plan already laid out to move us from an eternal death to an eternal life with Him.
Step 5: Jesus Christ is The Sacrifice Which Makes Us Clean.
We must understand and believe that God has provided a way for our sins (all our sins) to be completely washed away – a way for us to be made pure and clean in His sight. This way of forgiveness is through faith, or belief, in His Son Jesus.
God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him will not perish, but have eternal life. (John 3:16)
This verse is probably the most recognized verse in the whole Bible. But the all important phrase, “believes in Him”, is not made very clear. Our sin can only be forgiven through a proper sacrifice. Jesus Christ died and rose again in order to be the sacrifice for those who will believe.
God presented Him as a sacrifice of atonement, through faith in His blood. (Romans 3:25)
God loved us and gave us His Son even though we did nothing to deserve His love.
God demonstrated His love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. (Romans 5:8)
The death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ, provides us the opportunity to be washed clean – the opportunity to have our sin debt cancelled – the opportunity to spend eternity in Heaven. Jesus is the Savior who allows us into Heaven – He’s the only way!
Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth and the life; no one comes to the Father, but through Me.” (John 14:6)
Step 6: Receive Jesus Christ As Savior.
If we understand and believe the above steps, we’re ready. If we believe our sinful condition (Step 1), recognize we deserve an eternal Hell (Step 2), desire to turn from our sin and be made clean (Step 3), understand that we are unable to make ourselves clean (Step 4), and recognize the Sacrifice of Jesus as our only means of Eternal Life (Step 5), then we now must open the door of our heart and ask Him inside.
“Behold, I stand at the door and knock – if any one hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him.” (Revelation 3:20)
As many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name. (John 1:12)
If you truly understand and believe, I urge you to ask Jesus into your life – do not delay!
Today, if you hear His voice, do not harden your hearts. (Hebrews 3:15).
Tell Him you believe in His sacrifice as complete forgiveness for your sins and ask Him to be your Savior. If you have come this far, do not let another moment go by!! There’s no special prayer required. Simply tell Him you believe and ask Him to save you. Pray a prayer something like this:
Dear God, I know that I am a sinner who deserves an eternal death. I desire to turn from my sin, but I know that on my own, I can never achieve a sinless life. Left on my own I will be forever separated from You. I believe that Jesus Christ died and rose again as an eternal sacrifice for my sin. I accept the gift of Jesus and ask Him into my life as my Savior. Amen.
If this was prayed with a sincere heart, you are from this very moment, His Child. You have been “born again” (John 3:3), made a “new creation” (2 Corinthians 5:17), and will one day enter into the Kingdom of God (Heaven).
If you accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior, you will want to begin your new life. You will want to know how to walk with Him, talk with Him, worship Him, and learn how to have His peace in your life. This isn’t a requirement for Salvation. But a true understanding of the gift of Salvation naturally leads to a desire to fellowship and walk closer with your Savior. It leads to a heart of thanksgiving and a desire to praise Him. I encourage you to begin your Christian walk today!
Always remember that Salvation is based on Jesus plus nothing! Salvation is a gift from God and requires no further action on our part. However, now begins the process of living a life which brings God glory and honor – a life pleasing to God – a life of being His disciple.
A good beginning point is to find other believers to fellowship with. A good group of believers is usually found in a Bible believing, Salvation preaching church. The Bible tells of the importance of fellowship:
And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds. Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another – and all the more as you see the Day approaching. (Hebrews 10:24-25)
One of the first commandments we are given as believers is to be baptized. Jesus directed this in what is called The Great Commission.
“Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” (Matthew 28:19-20)
Baptism and obedience to His commands begins the process of discipleship: “Make disciples of all nations.” Baptism is an outward sign of our inward change and commitment. If you have found a good church, they should be more than happy to talk with you about baptism.
Next, begin to talk to God in prayer. There are many good books and studies on prayer, but all God really desires is for us to talk with Him on a regular basis. Set aside some time which is quiet and free of distractions. You don’t need to speak out loud but you may if you wish. Thank God for who He is and for what He’s done – and for what He’s going to do in your life. Ask Him to set your life in order and to give you direction and the strength to live a life which pleases Him. Then talk with Him about anything else which is on your heart.
Finally, begin to learn about God through the study of His Word (the Bible). I strongly recommend a consistent daily reading plan. The plan may be as simple as opening the Bible to a random page and reading each day, or it could be a systematic plan which takes you through the entire Bible in a year. Whatever plan you develop, work toward consistent daily reading. You will be rewarded with wonderful insights into God’s plan and will truly learn to love His Word. (Daily Reading Plan).
Welcome to God’s Family!
Follow the link to “The Christian Walk”. This page will review some of this same material and then lead to some Bible studies to help you stay on God’s Path.