Belief in Jesus Christ
In the Bible, the Gospel according to John, chapter 3 verse 16 says "For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life."
You see, it's all about God's love for us. The verse above must be the most quoted and memorised verse in the Bible. It is the Gospel, the "Good News" about Jesus Christ, in one short sentence. In a few words, it tells the story of how we are saved and gain eternal life ("salvation"). It tells of God's love for the world, God's gift of his only Son Jesus to die for us, and the opportunity for anyone who believes in Him to be saved.
Belief: 'Am I lost or saved?'
Faith and trust in Jesus Christ as our saviour is fundamental to finding the way to eternal life in heaven.
I have met a few people who think that everyone goes to heaven. One of them, a man who had been going to church for many years, thought that people went to heaven by "being nice to people". I'm afraid that's not enough - it needs rather more than that. It needs a living belief and faith in Jesus.
Have you read the Bible passage that tells us about one of the criminals on a cross next to Jesus? This criminal admitted that he deserved to die; and yet he had faith in Jesus Christ to save him. In Luke 23, v39-43, we read:
'One of the criminals hanging beside him scoffed, "So you're the Messiah, are you? Prove it by saving yourself – and us, too, while you're at it!"
But the other criminal protested, "Don't you fear God even when you are dying? We deserve to die for our evil deeds, but this man hasn't done anything wrong." Then he said, "Jesus, remember me when you come into your Kingdom".
And Jesus replied, "I assure you, today you will be with me in paradise."
Belief: Dispel the myths: learn from Jesus' own words
Please don't be misled. Yes, Jesus loves us - he cannot help it; he even loved some of the tyrants of recent history, such as Hitler and Stalin; but without faith and trust in Jesus Christ, the Son of God, our destiny is that other place, known as hell, cut off eternally from God. Sorry if that comes across as rather hard, but it is the Word of God, as written in the Bible.
In John 14:6, Jesus Christ himself said, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me."
Not ,"I am one of the ways to the Father", but "I am the way."
And in Matthew 7:13-14, again Jesus said, "You can enter God's Kingdom only through the narrow gate. The highway to hell is broad, and its gate is wide for the many who choose the easy way. But the gateway to life is small, and the road is narrow, and only a few ever find it."
In Luke 13:22-24 we read: ' Jesus went through the towns and villages, teaching as he went, always pressing on toward Jerusalem.
Someone asked him, "Lord, will only a few be saved?"
He replied, "The door to heaven is narrow. Work hard to get in, because many will try to enter; but when the head of the house has locked the door, it will be too late. Then you will stand outside knocking and pleading, 'Lord, open the door for us!' But he will reply, 'I do not know you."
If you have a Bible, you can check these yourself. Your translation may use different words, but the message is the same.
You know, some people say to me, "Oh, I believe there's a God" or "I believe in Jesus"; but even the devil believes in Jesus Christ - and trembles. With these people, you can tell there's something missing. To come into the presence of the living God, we need certain basics of belief in place:
· Belief: place your faith and trust in Jesus Christ.
· Accept Jesus Christ as your saviour.
· Accept the resulting forgiveness for your sins.
· Build a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, who loves us beyond our imagination.
· Start to grow the love of Jesus Christ in our hearts.
I'm afraid that, without belief in these things, we cannot come into the presence of the Living God. We cannot enter the Kingdom of Heaven. Your belief in Jesus Christ is of utmost importance.
I LOVE YOU ALL