The Gospel message . . .
You can experience a new peace in your heart by having a saving relationship with God's Son, Jesus! Here's how . . .
First, you need to admit that you have sinned. In other words, we've all failed to do what God wanted us to do at one time or another. The Bible says, "...for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God" (Romans 3:23). Just as one drop of poison would pollute a whole glass of water, so even one sin pollutes us, making us imperfect and unworthy to have a relationship with God. That's a real problem...
Second, you need to recognize that the consequence of your sin is eternal separation from God. The Bible says, "For the wages of sin is death..." (Romans 6:23). Death separates us from life, of course. But this death isn't just physical death. This death is also a spiritual death. As a result of our sin, we will be eternally separated from God in a place the Bible calls "hell". That's not what God wants for you! In the very same verse (Romans 6:23), the Bible goes on to say, "...but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord." God has given us the solution to our sin-problem...
Third, you need to understand that while no amount of "good works" can take away your sin, God can. If you try to clean a filthy window with a dirty rag, all you do is smear the dirt around. It doesn't clean the window. In the same way, giving to charity, going to church, helping others, even reading the Bible and praying - all these are good things but they can't erase our sin. The stain of sin is much too deep. The good news is, God can make us clean! The Bible says, "But God demonstrated His own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us" (Romans 5:8). Because Jesus was perfect He could pay for our sins by giving up His life on the cross. That really is good news! But good news like this has to be received...
Fourth, you need to personally ask Jesus into your life as your Savior. The Bible says, "That if you confess with your mouth, 'Jesus is Lord,' and believe with your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved" (Romans 10:9). Just as a lamp won't light until it's plugged in, we can't be forgiven until we "plug in" to Jesus by receiving Him into our life. That is, we must place our trust in Him to cleanse us from our sins.
Won't you do that right now by praying this simple prayer?
"Dear God, thank you for sending your Son, Jesus, to die on the cross for my sins. Please forgive me for the wrong things I've done and help me to stop sinning and live the way You want me to. I'm so glad that Jesus is alive today, and I invite Him to live within my heart, to be my Savior and my Lord always. In Jesus name I pray, Amen."
If you prayed that prayer then you have already started your relationship with Jesus Christ, one that will last for eternity! The Bible says, "For everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved" (Romans 10:13). How wonderful!
We'd love to hear from you if you've just invited Jesus to be your Savior! Write and tell us at firstname.lastname@example.org so we can begin praying for you. If you're nearby, join us for worship this Sunday so we can rejoice with you at this wonderful new beginning in your life! If you live some distance away, go this Sunday to a church near you that teaches the Bible and believes that salvation comes through faith in Jesus Christ as Savior. God bless you as you start to live with Jesus in your life!
Remember, receiving Jesus as your Savior is the first and most important step in having the gift of His salvation but the Bible also tells us to confirm our salvation by living our lives as Jesus wants us to. ("Therefore, brothers, be all the more diligent to confirm your calling and election, for if you practice these qualities you will never fail." 2 Peter 1:10) We do this by practicing things like faith, godliness, self-control, love, etc. (2 Peter 1:5-9). We grow in these things by worshiping regularly at church, reading our Bible, praying, and serving God using the gifts and abilities He's given us. In other words, salvation can be thought of as a single decision to trust Jesus but we prove the sincerity of our commitment to Jesus as we live our life daily for Him.