Being a Christian means that you have accepted Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and Savior. It doesn’t mean that you are perfect, but it does mean that you are forgiven and have been restored into a relationship with God through the death, burial, and resurrection of His Son, Jesus Christ. You also have a future with God after this life in heaven where Jesus has gone to prepare you're forever home. There is no specific “plan” to accept salvation, but here are some steps you can take:
Step 1: You are a sinner. Offended? Don’t be! Every person must admit this before they can be saved. Paul wrote in the book of Romans,
“For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God…(Rom. 3:23)”
This means that every person on earth falls short of the requirements to be able to enter heaven after this life is over. Every person includes anyone you can think of right now; teachers, doctors, race car drivers, PASTORS (Yes, they mess up too…), janitors, cooks, movie theater workers, every man, woman or child on this earth.
Step 2: Understand that being a sinner carries a penalty. Romans 6:23 states,
“For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”
The second step is to understand that being a sinner carries a penalty. This verse lets us know how bad our situation is and then immediately lets us know that we have hope through the gift of God and his name is Jesus Christ, our Lord. The disciple John referred to this in his writings as passing from death to life.
Romans 5:8 reads, “But God commendeth (demonstrated) his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.”
What? Paul was writing here that God showed His unflinching, unwavering love for us by sending His Son to die on the cross for us… even when we are against Him. Wow!
Step 3: The only way to salvation is through Jesus Christ. Salvation is only possible by faith in Jesus as God’s son.
“Neither is their salvation in any other: for there is no other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” Acts 4:12
“Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” John 14:6
Jesus is the only way to heaven. Bold statement right? Many people have questioned this thought and sought to disprove it, but evidence will show that Jesus truly is the only way to heaven and at some point, you will need to trust (have faith) that this verse is true. This leads to the next step…
Step 4: Repentance. It is a two-sided coin asking for forgiveness and then turning towards God.
“That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.”
Note that with our heart, we believe unto righteousness and with our mouth, we confess. We must do more than just say we are Christian, we must believe by faith and live by faith in our Lord Jesus Christ.
Step 5: Assurance. When we ask Jesus for the forgiveness of our sin, we can trust that He can and will give us forgiveness, and is able to save us. Romans 10:13 promises us,
“For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
Whosoever? That's you and me! Believe in Him! Ask Him! He promises He will save us!
So what’s next? Once you become a follower of Jesus, you spend the rest of your life growing in your faith through prayer, bible study, service, and fellowship with a local church. Our prayer is that each person who reads this is or will become a Christian. If we can be of any help to you in your decision or your walk with Christ, please call the church office (423) 245-3141 and we would be glad to help.
Click HERE to listen and download a sermon by Pastor Ronnie Owens titled "How to Know You Are Saved".