Would you consider yourself to be a good person?
Most individuals will respond, “Well...sure. I think I’m a pretty good person.” Would you mind if we asked you some simple questions to see if this is actually true? Thanks!
Question #1: Have you ever told a lie, regardless of how “big” or “small” it was?
If you have, join the club. We have all lied at some point in life. For whatever reason, we thought that covering up something we had done or something about us would be better than actually telling the truth. A simple title given to people who lie is, “Liar,” and we could all be called this.
Question #2: Have you ever taken God’s Name in vain, or treated it like it was a curse word?
We all fall short on this one, too. It seems like the Name “Jesus Christ” gets thrown around today like it’s just another swear word. We say it when we’re frustrated, angry, or fed-up, trying to express our indignation. Another Name we use irreverently is the simple Name of “God.” We make abbreviations for it now on Facebook, text messages, and even when we speak! Our God is so good to each one of us and we use His Name like it’s not worth anything. The Bible condemns this and calls it blasphemy.
Question #3: Have you ever hated anyone?
When someone hurts us, we often seek revenge and become bitter and hateful towards them. Hatred is very deceptive. In our hearts, we say, “I wish they weren’t here! I wish I could get even!” This is actually committing murder in our hearts, without actually going through with it in real life. After all, we would never murder someone, right? We do it all the time in our hearts.
After asking these three questions, it becomes apparent that we are not as good as we think we are. We make our own definition of “good” when God has His own definition. With God, for something to be good, it must always have been, and must always be righteous, or perfect. None of us can live up to that standard. You see, we are all in the same boat. Each one of us have sinned and come short of God’s righteous standard (Romans 3:23).
Here’s another question to consider: If God were to judge you by the ten commandments (three of which we just covered), would you be innocent or guilty?
If you answered, “Guilty,” that’s a good sign. It means you’re honest with yourself. You can admit that you’re not perfect. But if you’re guilty, that’s a problem because one day, immediately after you die, you will stand before God in judgment and He will judge you by His righteous standard. If you died right now, being guilty, would you go to heaven or hell?
Since we are all guilty of sin, we are all condemned to hell for eternity (Romans 6:23). That’s a long time. Does this concern you? If it does, please rest assured that God loves you and has done everything needed to provide a way for you to be forgiven.
God sent His Son, Jesus Christ to live a sinless life for you and for me. Since we could not do it, He did it for us. We read about His salvation in God’s Word, the Bible. Everything we know about salvation is taught there and we trust what it says. It tells us that Jesus Christ, Who knew no sin, became sin for us so that we could be made the righteousness of God in Him (2 Corinthians 5:21). This is what happened on the cross when Jesus cried out, “My God, my God, why hast Thou forsaken me?!” (Mark 15:34) God forsook Jesus because at that moment, Jesus became sin for every man and God poured out His wrath on Him. He did this for you. Jesus took your place.
What’s your part? Scripture says to “repent and believe the gospel” (Mark 1:15). The gospel is what you have just read...the good news that God prepared a way for you to be reconciled with Him. Repentance is simply changing your mind about your sin. When before you would enjoy your sin, now you hate it. When before you thought that it was okay, now you believe that it is wrong. And then trust the death of Christ on the cross as the payment for your own sin. It’s like a parachute. You put the parachute on because you trust that it will save your life. You put on the Lord Jesus because you trust that His death was sufficient payment for your sin.
Scripture tells us that if we confess with our mouth the Lord Jesus, and believe in our heart that Gad has raised Him from the dead, we will be saved (Romans 10:9). You must ask God to save you! Though the words which people use in their request to God for salvation may change, the concepts are the same. A prayer you could say might sound something like this, “Lord, I know I have sinned and that I deserve to be sent to hell for all of eternity because of my sin. I believe that Jesus Christ paid for my sins on the cross. I trust that His payment was sufficient for my sin. Please forgive me and save me from my sin. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.”
When you follow God’s Word in this, you are saved from your sin and hell. After all, this is God’s Word we’re talking about. It is always right about everything and you can trust what it says. If you need help with this matter, please don’t hesitate to contact us somehow. We would welcome the opportunity to talk with you more about eternity.