How To Have Eternal Life
The "Life" that is spoken of in the Scripture is not only life after death, but also ABUNDANCE OF LIFE for here and now. Jesus said,
"I am come that they might have life and that they might have it more abundantly" (John 10:10)
There is much confusion, however, about how this life is to be found. Many people think that the way of eternal life is found in "good works," by living a good life, or in some religious ceremony. The Bible makes clear that this is NOT the way, and the Bible makes the way of eternal life simple and clear so that anyone can understand. Please take a few moments to look at the WAY OF ETERNAL LIFE as presented in the Bible.
You don't have to know all about the Bible or all about GOD in order to become a Christian. None of us knows all that, but there are two or three things that are essential to know.
FIRST, YOU MUST KNOW THAT ALL HAVE SINNED
The first thing necessary to have eternal life is to admit that you have sinned. Agree with what GOD's Word says:
"As it is written, there is none righteous, no, not one."
"For all have sinned and come short of the glory of GOD."
There is not a person who can say: I am just as righteous as Jesus Christ. The truth is that all of us FALL SHORT of GOD's standard of righteousness which is Jesus Christ. The word "sin" means to fall short. It can be pictured this way:
A man may be shooting at a target, but all his arrows fall short. Some come closer than others, but all fall short. It is the same way in our living. We all fall short of GOD's standard of righteousness. Some may come closer than others, but all fall short.
This is very simple, but where a lot of people have difficulty. Some say: "I'm about as good as the next person or I'm better than some of those people who go to church." That may be true, but I don't have to give an account for the other person. I have to give an account for myself, and the Bible says that I have sinned.
THIS IS THE REASON THAT ALL MEN MUST BE SAVED. We all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of GOD.
SECOND, YOU MUST KNOW THAT CHRIST DIED FOR SINNERS
Romans 3:23 tells us why we must be saved - "For all have sinned and come short of the glory of GOD."
Romans 5:8 tells us why we can be saved - "But GOD commanded His love toward us in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us."
There are two reasons given here why we can be saved.
1. GOD loves us
GOD loves us even in our sins. We didn't deserve His love, we didn't deserve anything, but He loved us so much that He gave us His only son, Jesus. Jesus came into this world and lived here as a man. He taught us how to live and showed us how to live. But the most important thing He did for us was to die on the cross for our sins. He took the penalty of our sins upon Himself in order that we might be forgiven.
The Bible explains that anyone can be saved because GOD loves us and Christ died for us.
THIRD, YOU MUST KNOW THAT SALVATION COMES TO US AS A FREE GIFT
Romans 6:23 tells us first about the punishment for our sin -- "The wages of sin is death." Because we sin we must die. But the death that is spoken of here is not just a physical death of the body. This means "Eternal Death." It is spiritual death, or what the Bible calls "The Second Death." The Bible teaches that when a man dies in his sins without having Christ in his life he goes to hell, a place of punishment and torment forever and ever. That's how serious our sins are. We can't just laugh them off and say, "So what?" Our sins made Jesus die on the cross and unless we are saved our sins will take us to hell. But the "good news" is found in the last part of the verse. "The gift of GOD is Eternal life."
Many times in scripture salvation is spoken of as GOD's gift to us. A gift is not something you work for or something you earn. A gift is something that somebody "gives" to you because they love you. There is absolutely no way we can buy or earn eternal life. You couldn't get enough money to buy a ticket to heaven, or do enough good things for GOD to say: Now you have earned your way to heaven. Jesus paid the price of eternal life by His death on the cross. It comes to us as a free gift. There is ONE WAY to receive it. This is explained to us in the last phrase of the verse:
"Through Jesus Christ our Lord"
When we receive Jesus we receive eternal life.
Many people want to know: "Just how do I do that?" The Bible also makes this clear to us.
FOURTH, YOU MUST RECEIVE CHRIST AS SAVIOR
In Revelation 3:20 Jesus is speaking. He is pictured as standing at the door and knocking. What door is He talking about? THE DOOR OF YOUR HEART OR YOUR LIFE.
There are many ways that He knocks. He knocks through the Bible, though the preacher's sermons, through the prayers of Christian friends, or just through different things that happen to us to make us realize that we need Him.
You can see the picture every day. You go up to somebody's house and knock on the door. They come and open the door and say, "Hi, Bill (Hi Suzie), come on in." You go in because you are invited, but you would not think of breaking down the door or even go uninvited.
Neither does Jesus. He creates us with a WILL, the power to choose. So He does not force you to become a Christian. He simply asks for admission to your heart, and He promises, "If any man will hear my voice and open the door, I will come into Him and live with him and he with me."
Becoming a Christian is a matter of opening you heart and inviting Christ to come into your life.
I know I am a sinner and need to be saved I know that Christ died for me that I might be saved (He also arose from the dead and is living today)
PRAY A PRAYER SOMETHING LIKE THIS
"GOD, I know that I am a sinner. But I'm sorry for my sins.
Did you pray this prayer in your heart? Did you mean what you said? Would you let us know? If so, the Bible says you are saved.
"For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved." Romans 10:13
WHAT TO DO NEXT
1. Find a Bible believing church and go forward at the invitation time, confessing your faith in Jesus Christ.
"For the scripture saith, whosoever believeth on Him shall not be ashamed." Romans 10:11
2. Be Baptized.
"Then they that gladly receive His Word were baptized." Acts 2:41
3. Pray every day.
"Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need." Hebrews 4:16
4. Read your Bible every day.
"Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee." Psalm 119:11
5. Claim GOD's promise in the time of temptation.
"There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but GOD is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it." I Corinthians 10:13
"Submit yourselves therefore to GOD. Resist the Devil, and he will flee from you." James 4:7
6. Tell someone else about Jesus.
"That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with His Son Jesus Christ." I John 1:3