God’s Way of Salvation
You walked down the aisle of a church during a Sunday service and said the sinner’s prayer. Is that all there is to salvation, or is there something more? What does the Bible really say about salvation?
Proclaiming the gospel of Christ as the main thing was the heartbeat of the ‘Prince of Preachers’ Charles Spurgeon who said… “You will find all true theology summed up in these two short sentences: Salvation is all of the grace of God. Damnation is all of the will of man.”
Jonah 2:9 (NIV) Salvation comes from the LORD.
Dr. James Simpson, born in 1811, was responsible for the discovery of chloroform’s anesthetic qualities, leading to its medical use worldwide. He also laid a solid foundation for gynecology and predicted the discovery of the X-ray. Dr. Simpson was president of the Royal Medical Society and personal Royal Physician to Queen Victoria, the highest medical position of his day. He once stated, “Christianity works because it is supremely true and therefore supremely livable. There is nothing incompatible between faith and science.”
When asked what his greatest discovery was, Dr. Simpson replied: “It was not chloroform. It was to know I am a sinner and that I could be saved by the grace of God. A man has missed the whole meaning of life if he has not entered into an active, personal relationship with the living God through Christ.”
Hebrews 2:3 (NKJV) How shall we escape if we neglect so great a salvation?
The greatest discovery in history has not been the law of gravity, calculus, telescopes, television, electricity, DNA, or penicillin. The greatest discovery an individual could ever make is the truth of salvation in Jesus Christ and receiving Him as both Lord and Savior.
Salvation is not turning over a new leaf, but it is receiving a new life in Christ.
Good News: God knows your name and everything about you! He loves you and He has revealed in the gospel of Christ an amazing plan for your life (John 3:16). Many of us have heard the simple message of the gospel and about Christ dying on the cross for our sins. But, do you ever wonder how you actually accept Him as Lord and Savior?
Wise Up About Salvation
Jesus repeatedly declared He is the only avenue to God and only those who believe in Him will be saved. No human goodness, no earthly efforts, nor going through the motions of religion can deliver you from sin and death. Jesus said He alone provides the way of salvation (John 14:6).
2 Timothy 3:15 (NIV) The Holy Scriptures are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus.
This powerful Scripture reminds me of a story I heard about a young man who was graduating from college. His father hoped to give his son a new car for his graduation present. Many of the other graduates were getting new cars from their dads, so this young man wanted one too. He had even picked out the car and color he wanted and told his father about it.
When the day of his graduation finally arrived, his dad shocked the young man when he did not give him car keys, but rather, handed him a brand-new Bible. The son was so outraged that he turned and walked away in anger, leaving his father holding the Bible. In fact, he was so mad and bitter he cut off all contact with his father and never spoke to him again.
Years later the father died, the young man went to his house to prepare for the funeral and to help get his father’s affairs in order. There, sitting on a shelf, he noticed the Bible his father had tried to give him for his graduation years before. He blew off the dust and, with tears in his eyes, opened it for the first time.
Much to his astonishment, he found an envelope tucked inside the Bible with his name on it. Inside was a cashier’s check, made out to him, for the exact price of the car he had picked out. The check was dated the day of his graduation. His father gave him the car he wanted, but he had to open the Bible to get it.
He never realized what his father had done for him, because he did not open his Bible. As sad as that story is, we essentially do the same thing when we never open the Book our heavenly Father gave to us. Inside God’s Book is something far more valuable than a cashier’s check. The Bible contains the words of life eternal. What could be more valuable than that?
2 Timothy 3:15-16 (MSG) There’s nothing like the written Word of God for showing you the way to salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. Every part of Scripture is God-breathed and useful – showing us truth, exposing our rebellion, correcting our mistakes, training us to live God’s way.
The Bible is God’s Word, God’s Book and it is God speaking to us today! It is the user’s manual written by the Manufacturer, showing us who God is and how to know Him and His will. The Bible gives us clear instructions and warnings to guide us. In it we find the truth about salvation and directions on how to get to heaven.
How to Make Sure of Your Salvation
The real truth is we can be sure about where we will spend eternity. We can know with 100% certainty that when we die, we will go to heaven. But how can we know? Many people have doubts and struggle with the certainty of their salvation, especially new believers.
Being a Christian is not just knowing about God, it is actually KNOWING GOD Himself. It’s not about being religious, but it’s having a personal relationship with Jesus Christ (John 17:3).
If you want to know God in a personal way – if you want eternal life and the assurance that you will go to heaven when you die; if you carry a load of guilt around but you want to be forgiven and have peace with God – here are the FOUR R’S OF SALVATION…
1. REALIZE that you are a sinner. “God, be merciful to me a sinner!” (Luke 18:13). Jesus taught that “good people” don’t go to heaven because their pride keeps them from admitting their need for a Savior. No matter how good a life we try to live, we still fall miserably short of God’s standard. Being good isn’t good enough! That’s because we’re all sinners. We all fall short of God’s desire for us to be holy. The Bible says, “No one is righteous – not even one” (Romans 3:10 NLT).
- The truth of the gospel requires a response from the sinner. Genuine saving faith is the sinner recognizing his own hopeless, helpless, sinful condition before a holy God and trusting in Christ alone as his Savior (Acts 4:12).
Acts 16:31 (NKJV) Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved.
2. RECOGNIZE that Jesus Christ died on the cross for you. There’s nothing sinners can do to earn or deserve a right relationship with God (Ephesians 2:8-9). The Bible tells us that “God showed His great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners” (Romans 5:8 NLT).
- This is the good news of the gospel: that God loves us so much that He sent His only Son to die on the cross in our place; He rose again on the third day and paid the price for our salvation to bring us to God (1 Peter 3:18).
3. REPENT of your sin. The Bible says in Acts 17:30 that “God now commands all people everywhere to repent!” Jesus tells us to “repent and believe in the gospel” (Mark 1:15). The word repent means: “to change your direction in life by turning from sin to God, resulting in a changed life.”
- Repentance is a change of mind that leads to life-change. It’s like taking a spiritual U-turn in the road of life. Instead of running away from God, we run toward Him. “You turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God” (1 Thessalonians 1:9).
- The greatest gift that God could ever bestow upon repentant sinners is the gift of eternal life through the forgiveness of our sins by the blood of Christ shed for us on the cross.
4. RECEIVE Jesus into your life as your Lord and Savior. We cannot get right with God and be saved without receiving the Lord Jesus Christ (John 1:12). Becoming a Christian is not merely believing some creed or taking communion on Sundays. Becoming a Christian involves having faith in Christ as your Savior, and surrendering to His total Lordship over your life (Romans 10:9-10, 13).
- Salvation is not merely affirming you are a Christian, nor is it baptism, moral reform or joining a church. It’s not trying hard to “be a good person” and live by the golden rule.
- Salvation comes through giving up on one’s own goodness and self-merit, and trusting in the cross of Christ and His resurrection (1 Corinthians 15:1-4).
The gospel truth: It’s Christ alone who paid the penalty of our sin. And it’s by grace through faith we can receive salvation in Christ alone.
Salvation doesn’t come just by believing that Jesus is the Son of God, but by receiving Him into your life. If you haven’t yet invited the Lord Jesus Christ into your life, or if you have doubts and uncertainty about your salvation, then make a decision to receive Christ right now by praying this prayer…
“Lord Jesus, I know I am a sinner and based upon the gospel I come to You today for salvation and forgiveness. I believe that You are the Son of God, and that You died on the cross as my Savior, taking all of my sins and paying the price for my salvation. I believe You rose again from the dead to save me and bring me to God. Right now, by Your grace, I turn from all sin and receive You as my personal Lord and Savior. Thank You for saving me! Amen.”
1 John 5:11-12 And this is the testimony: that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life.
If you truly believe in Jesus Christ the Son of God, and have personally received Him as your Lord and Savior, then you have eternal life. You can rest assured in that truth.
Transformational truth: The gospel “good news” of salvation by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone is the ONE and ONLY WAY anyone can escape hell and enter heaven.