God’s Plan of Salvation
My friend, I want to ask you a question. The question is:
Are you saved?
I did not ask how good you have been to others, whether you are religious or spiritual, or how responsible you have been. No, the question is: Are you saved?
You see, God says in his word that you must be born again. Jesus said to Nicodemus,
"...Ye must be born again."
In his word God has told us to be born again (which means to be saved). His plan is simple. Do you want to know what it is? I would love to tell you about it.
But before I tell you of God’s plan of salvation, I need to tell you about why God says “ye must be born again”.
Why “ye must be born again”
First, do you understand that we are all sinners?
"For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;"
You see, God is holy. God has laws. Whenever you or I break his laws, we sin:
“Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law:
for sin is the transgression of the law.”
(I John 3:4)
You or I may not have directly broken all of his laws, but that doesn’t excuse us. Here’s what God says about this:
“For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point,
he is guilty of all.
For he that said, Do not commit adultery, said also, Do not kill.
Now if thou commit no adultery, yet if thou kill,
thou art become a transgressor of the law.”
This world often makes fun of sin, but to God sin is a very serious thing. God says that we will all face him one day and have to answer for what we have done in this life.
“And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment:”
The consequences of sin are fearful:
"For the wages of sin is death…”
The death that is spoken of here is not only physical death, but eternal death. There is a “second death”:
"And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire.
This is the second death.”
“And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever:
and they have no rest day nor night…”
How serious are the consequences of sin! That is why I want to tell you of what God has done for me and of what he can do for you.
God says that there are no good works, and there is no amount of effort on our part that can save us from the consequences of your sin.
But we are all as an unclean thing,
and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags;
and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.
But here is the good news - God has made a way.
How you can be born again
“For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin;
that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.”
(II Corinthians 5:21)
You see, God loved you so much that he gave his only Son, Jesus (who had no sin), to bear your sin and die in your place.
"But God commendeth his love toward us, in that,
while we were yet sinners,
Christ died for us"
Jesus had to shed his blood and die.
In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins:
God said that the sins of the whole world were laid upon Jesus on the cross and he died in our place. He became our substitute. No one, no one has ever loved you like that! This is all part of what is called the Gospel (which means “good news”). The Gospel is the death, burial, and resurrection (rising from the dead) of Jesus Christ.
For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:
I Corinthians 15:1
My friend, God says that we all must repent:
"God...commandeth all men every where to repent:"
This repentance is a change of mind and heart that causes us to agree with God and what he says in his word about our sin. It causes us to turn away from our sin, and to turn to God. It’s like saying “God, you are right and I am wrong and I want to follow you now.”
But what think ye? A certain man had two sons; and he came to the first, and said,
Son, go work to day in my vineyard.
He answered and said, I will not: but afterward he repented, and went.
In Acts 16:30-31, the Philippian jailer asked Paul and Silas:
"…Sirs, what must I do to be saved?"
Their answer was:
"…Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved..."
It’s simply by grace (God’s free gift to us) through faith:
“For by grace are ye saved through faith;
and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
Not of works, lest any man should boast.”
"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:"
"For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved."
"Whosoever" includes you. "Shall be saved" doesn’t mean "maybe". It doesn’t mean "can". It means shall be saved. It’s certain.
If you understand and agree with what God says, and believe that God's Son died in your place for your sin, that he was buried, and that he rose again for you, and if you will repent of your sin, God will save you. He has already paid the price for you, so it is his joy to save you! He didn't have to leave heaven, become a man, and come to earth to suffer and die for you, but he did that because he loves you. No one else ever loved you like that.
In Luke 18:13, the sinner sincerely prayed:
"…God be merciful to me a sinner."
Is God speaking to your heart through what you have read? If you want to be saved, then you need to go to God in simple childlike faith, asking him to save you. He won't reject you.
"All that the Father giveth me shall come to me;
and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out."