"Sirs, what must I do to be saved?"
That is the question that a Roman jailer asked Paul and Silas (Acts 16:29-30) and it is the most important question that any of us could ever ask.
In Genesis 1&2 we find out that God, who created all things - both visible and invisible, created us to be his beloved children, a special creation different from all other creations. In Genesis 3, however, we find out that our ultimate grandparents, Adam and Eve rebelled against God and did the one thing that was not allowed in the paradise that was called the Garden of Eden. You see, God did not make us robots that had no choice but to love Him. He gave us many precious gifts and one of them is free will. He wants us to choose to love Him, for He already loves us beyond all compare. Even though the rebellion of Adam and Eve brought death, disease and decay into the world, God showed his love by providing a covering of animal skins to cover their nakedness and symbolically their sin. The animal(s) that died to cloth them was the first physical death and it pointed forward to the ultimate sacrifice for our sin, Jesus Christ. You see ever since that day, all people have been born spiritually dead (cut off from God and without hope) and physically alive. God, however loves us and has provided a way that we can be restored into fellowship with Him so that we can be His greatly beloved child. The following verses describe God's solution to our terminal Sin problem. (The words in red are the words Jesus directly spoke and all other scripture is in blue.)
1. First of all, we have all sinned against God
For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.(Romans 3:23)
All of us have become like something unclean, and all our righteous acts are like a polluted garment; all of us wither like a leaf, and our iniquities carry us away like the wind.(Isaiah 64:6)
2. The Result of this sin is that we live apart from God, lost and without hope (except for the love and power of God).
Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, in this way death spread to all men, because all sinned.(Romans 5:12)
But each person is tempted when he is drawn away and enticed by his own evil desires. Then after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin, and when sin is fully grown, it gives birth to death.(James 1:14-16)
3. But God loves you. Because of His love God sent Jesus to pay for our sins. Our guilt fell on Jesus so that He could put sin to death. This allows God to offer salvation to us as a free gift.
"For God loved the world in this way: He gave His One and Only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send His Son into the world that He might condemn the world, but that the world might be saved through Him...."(John 3:16-17)
But God proves His own love for us in that while we were still sinners (wrong-doers) Christ died for us!(Romans 5:8)
He saved us not by works of righteousness that we had done, but according to His mercy, through the washing of regeneration and renewal by the Holy Spirit. This Spirit He poured out on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that having been justified by His grace, we may become heirs with the hope of eternal life.(Titus 3:5-7)
For by grace you are saved through faith, and this is not from yourselves; it is Gods gift, not from works, so that no one can boast.(Ephesians 2:8-9)
For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.(Romans 6:23)
But to all who did receive Him, He gave them the right to be children of God, to those who believe in His name,(John 1:12)
4. This then is how you receive this most precious gift of God. You must believe in the one He has sent, namely Jesus Christ. Acknowledge your sinfulness and your need for Him. Believe that God has sent Jesus to die in your place and raised Him up on the third day. Call out to Him while He may be found! If you accept Jesus as your Lord (spell that Boss) and Savior and ask Him to save you, He will move into your heart forever and save you to the uttermost.
If you confess with your mouth, "Jesus is Lord," and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. With the heart one believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth one confesses, resulting in salvation.(Romans 10:9-10)
For everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.(Romans 10:13)
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away, and all things have become new.<2 Corinthians 5:17-18>
5. Make no mistake; there Jesus is the only way to heaven. If you decide to place your trust in anything else, only eternal separation from God awaits. Trust Jesus today!
Jesus told him, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me." (John 14:6)
There is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to people by which we must be saved."(Acts 4:12)