How to Become a Christian
What is wrong with me?
The Bible answers that question in a single word: sin. Every man and woman who has ever lived was made by God for God to live in joyful harmony with God (Colossians 1:16). But there is a problem. God is holy – that means pure, true, perfectly good and right in everything He thinks and says and does, forever. The apostle John wrote “God is light and in Him there is no darkness at all.” (1 John 1:5) But the same cannot be said for us. Broken families, broken promises, illness, addiction, depression, guilt and shame. Worst of all, sin has separated us from God and robbed us of the perfect life we should have in Him (Isaiah 59:2). Would you allow an enemy to live in your home? Would God allow an enemy to live in His heaven? As a sinner, we are by nature enemies of God and deserving of His wrath (Ephesians 2:3).
What is sin?
At its heart, sin is rebellion against God, it is failure to properly acknowledge God and treat God as God, and it is a failure to live up to God’s perfect, holy standards. It is not just doing something ‘bad’, although that is certainly part of it. And it is more than just thinking bad thoughts. The Bible teaches that we are sinners by birth, by nature, by choice and by our actions. (Psalm 51:5) Sin even prevents us from doing what we know we ought to do (Romans 7:18-20)
Sin is a crime against God and, as such, sin has eternal consequences (Romans 6:23), both physical and spiritual death – which means separation forever from the goodness of God and eternal punishment in Hell, which Jesus Christ called a place of “outer darkness”, where there will be “weeping and gnashing of teeth” (Matthew 13:42; Luke 13:28). Hell is real and Hell is where everyone deserves to go – but is that the end of the story?
Is there hope?
Yes! Praise God, yes! There is certain hope! Recognizing that no one is able to help himself, the apostle Paul wrote this: O wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? I thank God—through Jesus Christ our Lord! (Romans 7:24-25) When Jesus Christ, the sinless Son of God, was on the cross, He took the full weight of our punishment on Himself. Literally, He became sin for us (2 Corinthians 5:21). This was no accident; He did it in order to save us (Mark 10:45). That was God’s plan (John 3:16) But the plan comes with a condition. You need to be forgiven, you need to become a child of God, you need Jesus.
How can I become a Christian?
First and foremost, you need to understand that there is absolutely nothing you can do to make yourself right with God. Attending church, getting baptized, praying, being kind to someone – these are all good things, but they could never atone for our sin. “All our righteous acts are like filthy rags” (Isaiah 64:6) The night before His crucifixion, Jesus prayed “My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from me.” Throughout the Bible, “cup” is used as a metaphor for someone’s destiny (Psalm 16, 23, Isaiah 57, Jeremiah 25, Zechariah 12 and 14 and, most poignantly here in Matthew 26). The Lord Jesus Christ is essentially saying “Please, Father, if there is any other way…” But there was no other way. Jesus had to do it for us and the statement in Ephesians 2:8 could not be clearer: “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith – and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God”. God alone has the power to make you right with God. And yet we do have a responsibility.
Realize that you are sinful and realize that Christ died for your sins on the cross. “As it is written, there is none righteous, no, not one.“(Romans 3:10) “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3:23) “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:8)
Repent of your sin and turn from your sin to Christ. “Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord.” (Acts 3:19) “I have declared to both Jews and Greeks that they must turn to God in repentance and have faith in our Lord Jesus.” (Acts 20:21)
Receive Christ as your personal Savior. “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.” (John 1:12) “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)
If you have placed your faith in Christ and received Him as your Savior then you are now a child of God. Colossians 1:13 indicates that you have now been delivered from the power of darkness and have been translated into the kingdom of God’s dear Son.
Since that is true, it is important for you to recognize Christ’s right to rule your life through His Word. Read and study the Bible regularly. We want you to grow into a mature believer. If we can help you in any way, please call one of the pastors at the office, (406) 586-9782.