Do you know God?
Many people know about God, but few have had a life-changing, personal encounter with Him. How can a person know God?
Here are 5 principle’s to lead you into a personal relationship with God.
Principle #1: God loves you and offers an incredible plan for your life. Jeremiah 29:11, “For I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord. They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.”
Throughout the Bible there is passage after passage that tells us how much God loves us. The greatest example of this was when God sent His only Son into the world to die for our sins. “But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners” (Romans 5:8 NLT). John 3:16, “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” Even today, he watches over you and pursues you to have a relationship with you.
Principle #2: Man is sinful and separated from God. It is so common in today’s culture to believe that there must be many paths to God. There are so many religions, each with very nice, good people in them. There are also so many good people…it can seem so natural to assume that each of these “good” people or their religious affiliation have a lock on heaven because they have done so many wonderful things. But the truth is that all of us have blown it…all of us have sinned, and all it takes is one sin to separate us from our God, because he is perfect. The Bible says, “All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). And “The wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23). As you can imagine, this creates a huge problem, through sin, we are separated from God…and therefore cannot get to God on our own, for where He is, there can be no sin. But just when it appeared that all was lost, principle #3 kicks in:
Principle #3: Jesus Christ is God’s only provision for man’s sin. Now I know that sounds too simple. But then again, we are not God. It was God who chose to provide a “sacrifice” for our sins, His own son Jesus. “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8).
Now here’s the incredible part, it was His death that paid for your sins and mine, all the ones we have committed as well as any we will commit in the future. There had to be a blood sacrifice…and Jesus willfully gave his for you and for me. But the most incredible thing to know is that three days after he died, he rose from the dead. This is not just religious mumbo jumbo, this is historical fact. And because he rose from the dead, he now sits at the right hand of God making intercession (carrying messages for us and speaking to God on our behalf) for us. “Christ died for our sins…He was buried…He was raised on the third day, according to the scriptures…He appeared to Peter, then to the twelve (disciples). After that he appeared to more than five hundred others…” (I Corinthians 15:3-6).
Principle #4: Jesus is the only way to God. This is the hardest one for many people to believe. There are no other “paths” to God or “ways” of salvation. While this “many paths to God” theory is popular in the minds of many and even some modern-day churches, it is a lie designed to keep people from the truth of Jesus Christ.
“Jesus said, I am THE WAY, (so there is no other way) THE TRUTH, (so there is no other truth) and THE LIFE; (so there is no other life) no one comes to the Father except through Me.” (John 14:6). This is why it is so important that you understand that to simply be a good person, go to church, believe in God, and do your best to serve Him is not what it means to be a Christian. It is impossible to be a God follower without accepting God’s son Jesus. Jesus is the way…the only way to salvation for mankind. It was Jesus who died on the cross to pay the penalty for our sins, and it is Jesus that we must accept and come in to relationship with if we are to be called by His name…”Christians,” which means “followers of Christ”.
Principle #5: You must receive Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord. “But to as many who received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name” (John 1:12). “For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, that no one should boast” (Ephesians 2:8-9).
Each person must individually receive Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord. Written below is a very simple prayer of salvation. It may be very similar to a prayer you have already prayed, but for some of you, this is your actual time of decision. If you have already prayed this prayer and know you are a Christian, then just read it over once and pray for those that may be praying this prayer for the first time. But if this is your moment of salvation, then simply stop right where you are at this moment, and pray this prayer to the Lord. He is waiting with great anticipation. Only pray these words if they truly represent the desire of your heart and your decision to follow Christ:
Dear Lord God, I need You in my life. I acknowledge that I have sinned and I come to You right now confessing that sin, and asking for your forgiveness. Thank You for dying on the cross for my sins. I believe You are the Son of God and that You died for me, and rose from the dead and are alive today. I open the door of my heart and receive You as my Savior and Lord. Thank You for forgiving my sins and giving me eternal life. Please take control of my life from here forward and make me the kind of person you want me to be. In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.
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