The Lighted Way|
How You Can Be Saved
You have probably heard the story many times of how Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God became a
part of the human race. You probably know that He lived an exemplary life. Never once did Jesus do anything
which was out of harmony with God's will. Never once did Jesus say an unkind word to anyone. Jesus healed
the sick, raised the dead, and taught the people about the love of God. Finally, Jesus submitted to a horrible
death. He died on the cross. His precious blood was spilled so that it might pay for the sins of every mortal
man and woman.
Yes, you probably know the story well. But do you really understand what its all about? What does God's
greatest gift of love mean to you personally? Many times, it seems that we hear this wondrous story so often,
we loose its deep meaning. Its kind of like getting vaccinated so that you won't catch the disease. This
time, as we thoroughly study what the Bible has to say about Jesus' sacrifice for you, let it in. Catch the
disease. Let yourself fall in love with our loving God. For, if you let it, this tremedous lesson can
change your life and heart.
1. Does Yaweh God, the King of the Universe, really care about me?|
It's beyond human comprehension how much God really does care for you and me. He loves you so much that He would
gladly have given His only Son to come and die if ONLY YOU would have been saved by it! You are very precious
in His sight.
"Thou wast precious in My sight, thou hast been honorable, and I have loved thee." Isaiah 43:4
"Yea, I have loved thee with an everlasting love." Jeremiah 31:3
2. How has God proven His love for us?
God loves us so deeply, that He was willing to watch His precious Son suffer and die - not just die, but die the
second death - so that we might be saved. So great was the trangression of Adam and Eve, that we, as a whole
race were completely lost. We are born lost. Long before we can actually commit a sin, we are still sinners.
Even the most innocent baby had no hope of salvation. God could not bear for this to be. He sent His only Son
because only Divine blood could atone for us. Only Jesus, the Sinless One, could take our place and truly wash
us clean from our sins. The cost of our redemption is so great. We cannot even BEGIN to comprehend what God
sacrificed to save us. In fact, the Bible is clear that we will remain clueless as to the full scope of what God
and Jesus have really done until the day we set foot in heaven. Only then will we see the depths God's love went
to so that you and I might be saved.
"For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish,
but have everlasting life." John 3:16
"In this was manifested (shown, demonstrated) the love of God toward us, because that God sent His only begotten
Son into the world, that we might live through Him. Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that HE LOVED US,
and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins." 1 John 4:9-10
3. With all of my faults, how could He love someone like me?
God's kind of love is in Greek called "agape". This kind of love is not earned or deserved. It loves even the unlovely.
This kind of love looks at the drug addict and sees past the addiction to the person they can become in Him. This kind
of love sees past the faults. When Jesus looks at you, He does see what you are now. But He also sees much more. The
Bible compares Him to a potter and us to the clay. He molds us, if we let Him. And we will be beautiful when He is
finished. God's love is the only thing about Him that is unconditional. No matter what you do, or think, or say,
God loves you. No matter how evil or filled with pain your life has been, God can bring you healing and wholeness.
Jesus died for you so that all the hurt and sin in your past might be cleansed. He didn't wait for you to clean up.
God and Christ love you now and always.
"But God commendeth His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us." Romans 5:8
4. Why did Jesus have to die?
The penalty for sin is death. God's pure, loving, sinless universe will not continue to have sin in it. Therefore,
all sin must be destroyed in order for full harmony to be restored. Because our first parents fell and became enslaved
to Satan, we are all born lost! There is no hope for us. We sin and cannot help ourselves to stop it. We break the
law of God and disobey His will constantly. We can have no part in God's pure universe. We are in the middle of the
problem. If God did not care about us, He could have just snuffed out our existence and be done with it. But God
Originally, before Adam and Eve sinned, God walked with them in the Garden of Eden. God loved our first parents and
enjoyed being with them, as they loved to be with Him. When sin entered, the first thing to go was this beautiful
connection with our Holy God. He could no longer come to us. His very Holy presence consumes sin. We are told that
no man (while in our current sinful state) may look at God and live. (Exodus 33:20)
Without the ability to communicate with us directly, God had to veil His Divinity. Jesus Christ came to earth hiding
His Divinity behind the shroud of humanity. He came and lived in a manner that would show us just how loving and
kind and good God is. He told us, "If you've seen Me, you've seen the Father." In this way, He let us know that
His loving acts and words were the very words God the Father would use with us.
Jesus lived a perfect life. Even though Satan hurled the greatest temptations ever given to any being at Jesus, He
did not fall. Praise God, that He didn't! Had Jesus made even one mistake, all would have been lost. God's law
which governs the universe had been broken on our planet. The only way to bring us back to God was to have Jesus
come here and live the perfect life we couldn't live. He then died the death we would have to die. He took our
death and gave us His sinless life record. Now, the debt to God's perfect law is paid. When God looks at His children,
He no longer sees their faults, now He sees the precious blood of Jesus and His sinless life. Jesus' perfection
is credited to our account. Our sins and imperfections were credited to His account. We can live, because He died.
By accepting what He did for me and following Him in love, I am taken into God's family as His child.
"Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God." 1 John 3:1
"But as many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name."
5. What steps must I take to pass from death to life?
You must first recognize your desperate need for Jesus your Savior. You do this by admitting three things:
A. I am a sinner. "All have sinned." Romans 3:23
B. I am doomed to die. "The wages of sin is death." Romans 6:23
C. I cannot save myself. "Without Me, ye can do nothing." John 15:5
Once you admit your great need for Jesus, you must next believe three things:
A. Jesus died for me! "That He... should taste death for every man." Hebrews 2:9
B. Jesus forgives me! "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins." 1 John 1:9
C. Jesus saves me! "He that believeth on Me hath everlasting life." John 6:37
6. Think about it:
Because I am born a sinner, and because of the sins I have committed, I must die the eternal death.
If I die the eternal death, I certainly cannot have eternal life. Therefore, if I must die for my own sins,
as I deserve to do, then I have no hope. I will simply be dead forever.
My debt is greater than I can afford to pay. But Jesus has come. He has died so that I don't have to.
Because His life was sinless, and His death undeserved, He is resurrected. He was able to die that horrible
death which I owe and still come back to spend eternity with me. He died in my place and gave me the credit
for it. Now my debt is paid. I do not have to die for my sins.
I must accept the offer! Simple, isn't it? I openly acknowledge and accept His death for my sins. And,
wonderful thought, the moment I do this, I have instantly become a son or daughter of God!
"Being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus." Romans 3:24
"A man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law." Romans 3:28
7. The process of sanctification:
The first step of salvation is a gift. God justifies me. In other words, through Jesus, I am made to be just
as if I never sinned. This is justification. But, having accepted the loving gift of Christ on my behalf, and
now being a part of God's family, I must now take the next step. This step is called sanctification. It is
the process of being changed until I am like Jesus. Just as an orange tree must bear oranges, so a Christian must
bear fruits unto righteousness. The fruit is the evidence that I really have let Jesus into my heart. If I bear
no fruit, then I haven't let Jesus in - for His power brings out the fruit in me. Therefore, no fruit - no
true experience with God. If I have no fruit (Galations 5) then I am lying to myself. I am not really a
Christian after all.
Being a Christian is about being born again. We were once born as sinners. We could not help ourselves. We sinned.
The next birth is a spiritual one. We must die to what we were (spiritually), and become a new creature (Romans 6).
The sinful person I used to be is forgiven. Now I must, in the grace and strength of Christ leave the life I
once lived and enter a new life - one that pleases the Lord.
"Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away, behold, all things are
become new." 2 Corinthians 5:17
8. But I LIKE my old life... Will I be happy if I am changed?
Satan is certainly a great deceiver. He gives us things like drugs and immorality, and then he sells us the
idea that its fun. I get high - its fun! (I kill brain cells and risk my very life each time I do), I get laid -
its fun! (I harm myself and others through using people and allowing myself to be used. I risk life-threatening
illness, etc.). If you are thinking
this way, you are buying Satan's first lie to mankind. He suggested to Eve that God was keeping something GREAT
away from her! Now what kind of a loving Being would He be if He kept us from something truly wonderful! But God
wasn't keeping Eve from eating that fruit because of how wonderful it was. God knew that if she ate it, she and
all her descendents would be plunged into terrible pain and great sorrow. God kept it from her because it gave
a momentary pleasure with a lifetime of pain and horror.
Today, we have the same tempation. "Don't give up your sinful life," Satan says to us. You LIKE it! Here is where
you must remember that he is a liar! God will NEVER ask you to give up something that is good for you! So, knowing
that, are you ready to trust Him to change your life? Or will you continue to listen to that old liar and cling to
life you have. Satan will only bring you pain, friend. He hates you, after all. But, on the other hand, a loving
God is stretching out His hand to you. He is offering you so much! There is nothing that you will leave behind
that is of any value. God is merely going to replace the phoney pleasures (ones that hurt you down the road)
with the real thing (ones that bring lasting peace and happiness)!
Jesus said, "These things have I spoken unto you... that your JOY MAY BE FULL." John 15:11
"If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed." John 8:36
"I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly." John 10:10
9. How can I make myself do all things a Christian should?
Remember, salvation is a gift at every stage. In the stage of justification, Jesus forgives and cleanses you from
sin. Now, in the stage of sanctification, Jesus gives you the power to resist Satan's temptations. They will roll
off of you like water off a duck's back! How does it work? When you are tempted to return to that old life of sin,
don't even entertain that thought! Instead instantly fall to your knees and pray, "Precious Jesus, I have accepted
You as my Savior. You promise to not only forgive me, but also to cleanse me from unrighteousness! (1 John 1:9) I
am now being tempted by Satan to become dirty again. Please help me, Lord. Without you I will simply do what I have
always done. But I need YOUR strength right now! Help me to stand. Help me to obey You, not Satan! Thank You,
In the moment you rise from your knees, friend, that desire to do wrong will have completely vanished. A good follow
up now is to sing a song. I find that the most spiritually powerful songs are ones which actually use the name of
Jesus in them. So sing to Him! Praise Him! And walk free! Please note, though, that - especially at the beginning -
Satan will come back to tempt you about that same thing often. You may feel the temptation again in just 5 minutes
from when Jesus last gave you the victory! If that happens, friend, keep up the fight! Pray again, as often as
you need to! In fact, the Bible tells us we will always be in a state of prayer. In other words, to be truly strong
your mind will always be in an attitude of communicating with God, whether you are at work or at home, or whatever
you are doing.
"I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me." Galation 2:20
"I can do all things (yes, even resist the Devil) through Christ which strengtheneth me." Philippians 4:13
10. Are you suggesting that keeping the Ten Commandments is not hard?
"If ye love Me, keep My commandments." John 14:15
In the Bible, our love for God is demonstrated by our obedience to His law and will. What if God had simply patted
us on the head and said, "I love you, you poor sinful thing you!" Would that have been very helpful? In fact,
given all the heavy weight of sin and suffering, would we have believed God if He said He loved us and then DID
nothing? Certainly not! Love is real love when it can be DEMONSTRATED. Our method of showing God that we really
do love Him in return is our obedience. Sin not only hurts humans, it hurts our heavenly Father. He made a sinless
world for us originally, because sin and suffering are not part of God's plan for us. So, yes, when you are a
Christian, God asks you to give something up. He wants you to give up sinning. His power will enable you to do it.
But you must first WANT it.
"For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments: and His commandments are not grievous (miserable or hard)."
1 John 5:3
"But whoso keepeth His word, in him verily is the love of God perfected." 1 John 2:5
11. Isn't Commandment-keeping just a nice way of selling legalism?
Obedience to God and legalism are not the same! Legalism is trying to earn salvation by your own works. We cannot
earn salvation. It is a free gift. But once we have received it, it changes us. The love of God creates in us
a great desire to do what pleases Him. Our relationship with God is sometimes compared to a marriage. We are His
bride. Can any marriage last if one person says, "I love you" to the other, but chooses to do the things that hurt
the spouse? Does love intentionally and continually harm the object of that love? No marriage could survive if it
did! Neither can our relationship with God survive if we do not demonstrate the depth of our love by joyously
choosing to do the things which bring God delight!
"Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus." Revelation 14:12
The real difference between legalism and sanctification is the motivation. In legalism you are not admitting your
need for a savior. Instead, you are trying to BE your own savior. You are working not to please God, but out of fear
of His punishment.
In the sanctification process which God's saints must go through, you fully and deeply admit your desperate need for
a Savior. You accept Him. And the response which a knowledge of His love for you brings out is your love for Him.
With love as your motivator, you joyously commune with Him. As each temptation arrises, you see it as a threat to
your relationship with Him. And you are not willing for anything to bring pain to your loving Savior. Thus you
call upon Him for strength to meet each demonic encounter. His strength is yours for the asking. Ultimately, because of how
great the cost was to the One you love so much, you find you would rather DIE THAN SIN! This is the fruit of
sanctification. This is the fruit of true love.
"And they (God's people) overcame him (Satan) by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony;
and they loved not their lives unto the death." Revelation 12:11
12. A marriage is sealed with a wedding. What significant act seals my love relationship with Christ?
The act of baptism. Baptism symbolizes three wonderful things:
A. In the act of baptism we experience the spiritual grave - we die to sin
"Therefore we are buried with Him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the
glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life." "That the body of sin might be destroyed." Romans 6:4-6
B. When we come up out of the water, our sanctifcation process begins - we are a new creature, who no longer
lives in the old pattern of sin.
C. The baptism ceremony is also a betrothal. We become "engaged" or spiritually promised to Jesus for eternity.
When Jesus returns, we will enjoy the wedding feast with Him.
"I have espoused you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ." 2 Corinthians 11:2
The symbol of being a virgin is one who is pure. We are made pure by Jesus' blood. We will now stay pure through
Jesus wants to have a deep, abiding and victorious relationship with YOU. He wants to change you. He wants to
snatch you from Satan's cruel grasp. Jesus offers you freedom and true happiness. All that you must surrender in
order to be His child are only the things which cannot bring lasting happiness. Would you like to admit to Jesus
that you are without hope. Will you tell Him that you desperately need Him. Will you thank Him for suffering so
much that you might be saved. Pray now. Ask Him, if you really desire, that He will come in to your heart.
Surrender to Him. And now, there are things you can do to keep yourself close to Him:
A. Study the Bible for yourself, so that you clearly know what His truth is. (John 5:39)
B. Pray ALL the time - no matter where you are or what you are doing (1 Thessalonians 5:17)
C. Walk with Jesus throughout your day. Follow in the steps He walked. Be like Jesus! (Colossians 2:6)
D. Give up your desire for selfish ambition and sin EVERY day - pray to be that new creature every day (1 Corinthians 15:31)
God will richly bless you, dear friend, as you seek an ever deepening relationship with Jesus!
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