Many millions of people claim to be Christian. The notion of what that means is as varied as the number of people who are claiming it. Many claim it based on the tenants of the church they attend. Many claim it based on a prayer they prayed and thus claim to be born again. Many go even further and state all that they do for God in their lives and that they have done so for many, many years. Still others grew up in a faith and claim it based on parentage and don’t even attend a church regularly. This list can go on and on as to why someone would claim to be Christian.
One thing is clear. The majority, by virtue of their words, KNOW that being a Christian is what is needed to enter heaven and that Jesus Christ is the only way to get there. But many stop with the verbal claim and go no further to move toward the real pathway for entering into heaven. Jesus even says that the path is narrow and FEW shall find it (Matthew 7:14).
So what is it?
Just what does it mean to be saved? The whole of the bible was written about this subject so it isn’t the purpose of this article to restate all of those words here. But rather to touch upon some very basic necessities of how salvation begins and how to keep it.
Salvation is not a head issue. It is a matter of the heart. All of the world’s demons know Jesus with head knowledge. Jesus died on a cross because a price had to be paid for sin. Jesus truly did take all sin upon himself and he went to hell for all of mankind (John 3:16). Thus, no one goes to hell for any sins they have done in their life. The only sin that sends a person to hell is to reject Jesus and what he did on the cross. This leads many people to believe that all they have to do is say, ” Yes, I accept what Christ did for me on the cross. All done, I’m saved”!
Not so fast!
The happening of salvation truly begins when the Father draws the heart to Christ in the first place (John 6:44). As that person is drawn closer he experiences a need for Christ because of a realization of his own sinfulness. Yes, there must be an acknowledgement of one’s own sinfulness and the inability to stop sinful behavior and thoughts. A sinner realizes the need for a savior to free him from the slavery of sin. The acceptance of Christ from such heart-felt desire to be free is actually the beginning of salvation.
Salvation is free
Salvation is free until you get it. The real work then begins to keep it (Philippians 2:12). Too many souls receive their salvation and then never do much more to learn of the God who gave it to them. Jesus said that it would make sense to count the cost of serving him (Luke 14:25-33). He also said that his followers were to love him with all their heart and souls and might (Deuteronomy 6:5).
The Word of God is the work
Developing a realtionship with Christ, or a real friendship is what really constitutes the pathway to a lasting salvation experience. When a person falls in love they do all they can to spend time with that person and get to know all they can about them. Christ wants to to be the first and most important thing in our lives. He actually isn’t as concerned about all the work you do for him as much as he is the joys in the frienship that comes when you spend time with him. The works will come out of the friendship you kindle with him. When the door to heaven closes many will say to God that they did all these works in his name and he tells them to depart that he never knew them (Matthew 7:23).
To be transformed and to resist the enemy
The whole purpose of the friendship with God is to be made to be like him in every way. If you love him; obey him (John 14:15). To obey him is to come to think like him, to know what sin is, and to know what his will is in all things. It is the only thing that can keep you from being deceived out of your rightful inheritance with God when the hour of trials and temptations come. The Word tucked into your heart is the weapon that even Christ used to fight the temptation of the devil (Matthew 4:4).
Why is it so hard?
Because it requires DISCIPLINE and work to make the flesh bow to what it clearly does not want. Hebrews 12 says that discipline is unpleasant but that the rewards are great! It is greatly unpleasant to admit that one would have a sinful trait that needs correcting or a sinful way of thinking that needs to be transformed. But Jesus also takes each person down the path of transformation in a way that he knows the person can bear and reveals those things to be changed in his own way. But the bottom line is that this relationship must happen for salvation to be real and lasting.
Don’t be fooled into thinking that you can party away the years in a Spirit-filled church or a Christian denomination, do a few works for God and slip yourself into heaven by trying to be good. You cannot know what that is without the Word of God. The Word is Jesus (John1:1-14) and it is his power in spending time with him that actually makes the changes. It will be the most rewarding and profound and joyous things one can ever do in all of life even when it is hard.
The video in this piece is amazing and so worth the time to listen to as it goes through all this truth in greater detail. It also details an eyewitness account of the hierarchy of demons in our world and how they work against us.
Enjoy this article? Receive email alerts when new articles from this author become available. Just click on the SUSCRIBE button above or below. Please feel free to make a comment or just sign in to let her know that you were here.
Every visit to any of the articles by this author sends a donation to the Armenia Widows Fund through the missions of World Challenge.