1 John 5:13
These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.
God's Word contains many wonderful promises and assurances. None of them are more important than the one we have before us today. God says that this Bible was written, among other things, "...that ye may KNOW ye have eternal life."
- That you may know your sins are forgiven
- That you may know you have been rescued from eternal hell
- That you may know you will go to heaven when you die
- That you may know you have been saved
The Bible calls it the Gospel, which just means GOOD NEWS.
The good news is YOU DO NOT HAVE TO WONDER IF YOU WILL GET TO GO TO HEAVEN WHEN YOU DIE. The Bible was written, more than anything else, to tell you how to reserve for sure your place in heaven. Since it was written for that reason, we can look in nearly every chapter of the Bible and begin from there to explain how to go to heaven. But my favorite place to tell the wonderful story of salvation is from the book of Romans.
This whole book is dedicated to explaining:
- The condition of men before salvation
- The plan of salvation and
- The benefits of salvation
I am a simple kind of person. I like to say things in a simple kind of way. And I like to express God's wonderful plan of salvation by saying,
"There are three things you need to know and only one thing you need to do in order to be saved."
I. YOU NEED TO KNOW YOU ARE A SINNER
Romans 3:10 (also look at Romans 3:2)
For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.
The verse even tells us what sin is.
... And come short of the glory of God.
Sin doesn’t have to be some heinous crime committed against humanity. Any time we miss the mark of God’s glory; any time we miss the mark of God’s expectations we have sinned. The Bible says all of us have done that.
We do it by nature.
Ever since Adam and Eve committed their first sin in the Garden of Eden they passed on to their children a sin nature. WE CAN’T HELP BUT SIN.
We do it by choice.
We know what is right, but choose to do wrong.
For the good that I would I do not but the evil which I would not that I do. Romans 7:19
The first thing we need to know is that we are sinners.
The second thing we need to know is
II. THERE IS A PRICE FOR SIN
For the wages of sin is death...
We all know what a wage is.
That is what you get at the end of the workweek. Your boss comes up to you with a paycheck and says, “This is what you earned working.” A wage is something we work to earn. It is something we deserve.
The Bible says that all of us have sinned and that what we earn for being sinners is death.
But the word death means more than just physical death.
Adam and Eve had been warned of God that the day they ate the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil they would surely die.
They ate the fruit, but they did not die physically that day. In fact, Adam lived to be eight hundred years old.He did not die physically that day. But something did happen. He was driven from the Garden and from the presence of God. His sin separated him from God.
The Bible says that every one of us is born into this world separated from God like that.
It is a spiritual death.
We are dead in trespasses and sins.
But that is not the end of the meaning of death.
And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. (KJV)
When a person experiences physical death, who is already dead in trespasses and sins, they then go to hell and the Lake of Fire where they will suffer forever and forever. So when the Bible says that the wages of sin is death. Ultimately it means that we deserve to go to hell forever for our sins. I didn’t say that, the Bible did.
In order to get saved
- We must know we are sinners and
- We must know we deserve to go to hell for our sins.
This isn’t very good news is it? It gets better from here.
The third thing we need to know is that
III. JESUS PAID OUR WAY OUT OF SIN
For the wages of sin is death but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
We need to understand the difference between a gift and a wage. A wage is something we earn. But a gift is something given to us absolutely free, most often by someone who loves us.
I love my wife. And because I love her I try to buy her gifts often. Those gifts cost me something. I take money I earned and purchase with it a gift for her. But she does not have to earn it from me. I give it to her because I love her, no strings attached, or it is not a gift at all.
God bought you and me a gift too. That gift is eternal life with Him in heaven. He paid for it with the blood of His Son, Jesus Christ. When Jesus:
- Came to this earth
- Lived a sinless life and then
- Died on the cross
He did that, not for His sins, but for yours and mine.
God wrapped that gift up in the Bible and He offers it to us today. But just like any gift, in order for it to be of value to us, we have to accept it.
Say I buy my wife a wonderful gift. I wrap it up in the most beautiful paper. I write her name on it and I present it to her. Is she enjoying it yet? No. Before she can really enjoy it she has to
- Take the gift
- Open it and
- Accept it as hers
III. THE ONLY THING WE NEED TO DO IS TO MAKE THAT GIFT OUR OWN
How do we do that?
That if thou shalt confess with the mouth the Lord Jesus and 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.
Verse 9 says two things:
- Confess with the mouth and
- Believe in the heart
First we believe in the heart. We believe the message I just told you:
- How that we are sinners
- How that we deserve hell
- How that Jesus died was buried and rose again so we could be saved
If we believe those things, then we act with your mouth. What do we say?
For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.
- If you believe you are a sinner who needs to be saved
- If you believe your sin, if not forgiven will send you to hell.
- If you believe that Jesus died, was buried and rose again for your sins
Then all you have to do is to call out to Jesus and ask Him to forgive your sins.
If you believe Jesus will save you from your sins right now if you ask Him to, then I want to ask you to pray a simple prayer of salvation right now.
Dear Lord, I know I am a sinner. I know I need to be saved. Right now, as best as I know how, I call upon the name of the Lord Jesus I ask you to forgive my sins, to come into my heart, to save me and take me to heaven when I die. In Jesus name, Amen.