For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast. Ephesians 2:8,9
God's amazing saving grace gives Him the ability to come to man in his sinful condition with the free gift of salvation. The Lord Jesus Christ, Son of the living God, King of all kings and Lord of all died on a cross, suffered a horrible death, was buried and rose again to give us eternal life! By the cleansing power of the blood of Christ we can be born again and saved from eternal damnation.
Through grace, the un-merited favor of a loving Father, God visited me in my living room thirty two years ago while I was planning a half million dollar drug deal that would ultimately change my life, or so I thought. Addicted to cocaine, alcohol, pills, marijuana, opium and pornography my life was a stinking mess as I had squandered everything on sex, drugs and rock and roll! A potential millionaire at twenty five after inheriting my father's business to a miserable drunken wretch cutting scrap metal at thirty three. I was lost and hopeless with no where to go but Hell! But God had a plan.
In the midst of my plan to sell dope a man knocked on my door and I let him in only to hear the gospel of Jesus Christ for the first time in my life. I don't remember many of the details but he explained to me God's plan of amazing saving grace from a biblical chart he had drawn and the only thing I remember seeing was the Lake of fire. I asked him what that was and he said, "That is where the lost go who have not been saved!" He then asked me if I believed God would save me this very night and I dropped to my knees and asked the Lord to save me from my sins and He did and I have never been the same since!
Amazing grace, how sweet the sound, that saved a wretch like me. I once was lost but now am found, was blind but now I see.
LOST AND FOUND
"And when I passed by you and saw you struggling in your own blood, I said to you in your own blood, 'Live!' Yes I said to you in your blood, 'Live!' Ezekiel 16:6
I believe every person has a chance to hear God's plan of salvation and that at the right time He will present it to whomever will hear and obey His call. One must be saved from his sin and washed from an evil lifestyle to be able to become born again and the blood of Jesus is the only cleansing agent able to cleanse away all of our iniquities.
The word of God says that all of mankind has sinned and fallen short of God's glory because we were all born with the stain of Adam's sin in the garden of Eden. We were born with the generational curse of the sins of our fathers with no chance to escape the sentence of Hell but through the cleansing flow of the Savior's blood. Jesus paid the price to set us free from sin and eternal death in Hell when He died on the cross and shed His blood for us in seven places to give us a complete salvation free from the confines of eternal damnation!
In man's best state he is hopelessly lost and dying in his sin and rebellion to God and his only chance is to receive the Savior's call is to be born again and repent of his wicked lifestyle. Eternal life is available to all who would ask for mercy and cry out to a loving Father who would rush to their side with Hisamazing saving grace! There is salvation in no other than the Lord Jesus Christ, the only One who truly gave His life for you so that you could be freed from your sins and live eternally in peace with Him.
T'was grace that taught my heart to fear. And grace, my fears relieved. How precious did that grace appear the hour I first believed.
FAITH TO BE SAVED
"For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life." John 3:16
Faith is the key ingredient to become born again, the substance that has the creative power for us to believe God's word and take it deep within our heart. Believing that Jesus existed is not enough because even the demons believe and yet they are not saved, no, one must truly believe in the Savior's death, burial and subsequent resurrection in order to be saved.
The word of God is a supernatural book and to read it and take it to heart one must rely on the Holy Spirit for the interpretation. The seed of the word is planted in the believer's heart, watered by the Holy Spirit in good soil and will produce a new creation in Christ. When I was confronted with the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ, I had to make a choice, believe or not! Many today in the church are not born again because they have not been convicted of being lost nor have they believed in the Son of God's resurrection, but have only been co- hearsed down an isle or raised a hand thinking that is enough to inherit eternal life.
For the apostles to have left all to follow Jesus and the 3000 saved at Pentecost to give up all by selling their possessions there must have been a powerful display of God's amazing saving grace available for them to have left all and dared to believe in the Lord and follow Him. Are you willing to give up all to follow the Master's call by laying down your life and believing in Him with all of your heart or will you reject His amazing saving grace? The choice is yours and the decision to believe is the most important you will ever make!
Through many dangers, toils and snares I have already come; 'Tis grace that brought me safe thus far and grace will lead me home.
A FREE GIFT
"If you knew the gift of God, and who it is who says to you, 'Give Me a drink,' you would have asked Him, and He would have given you living water." John 4:10
Jesus came to a woman of Samaria at Jacob's well and asked her to give Him a drink and she asked Him why He would ask a drink from a Samaritan woman because the Jews had no dealings with them. He in turn said to her, that if she would ask, He would give her living water. Jesus was offering the free gift of salvation to the woman as He at the same time exposed her sins to her.
Salvation is free but will ultimately cost you everything if you truly give up your will and your heart to the Savior and allow Him to lead you and guide you through life. For man to be saved he must submit, surrender and die to all independent living to serve the One who gave him the gift of life. Just muttering a little prayer thinking that this will get your ticket punched for Heaven is not what being saved is about, it is more like the vow of marriage and the giving of ones heart to another in a love relationship of trust and obedience.
Millions have prayed the"Sinner's prayer" and yet many have never surrendered their heart to God. Even Billy Graham admits that many of those he led to pray never followed through and served God with all of their heart and soul. Jesus never led anyone in a prayer, neither did Paul or Peter or anyone else in the Bible, in fact the prayer was developed from Romans 10:8-10 but originally it was taken from Deuteronomy 30:11-20 that describes a covenant oath of total surrender and service to God in obedience to His word!
The Lord has promised good to me. His word my hope secures. He will my shield and portion be, as long as life endures.
THERE ARE NO GOOD PEOPLE IN HEAVEN
Now a certain ruler asked Him saying, "Good Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?" So Jesus said to him, "Why do you call Me good? No one is good but One, that is God." Luke 18:18,19
According to Jesus no one is good enough but God and there are no good people in Heaven, only saved ones! A rich young ruler was questioning Him about eternal life and the Lord began to deal with the man's heart and motive. The first thing He told him was to keep the commandments and the boy said he had and so the Lord continued and said to him, "Sell all that you have and distribute to the poor and you will have treasure in Heaven; and come follow Me."
Today if someone asked a preacher how to obtain eternal life, he would normally say, "Bow your head and repeat after me the "Sinner's prayer" fill out this card and be sure to come to church on Sunday!" Millions have done this very thing and although some truly committed their life to Christ and were saved, many others walked away in the same state as before, lost and headed for Hell! The key to salvation is conviction and the reality of one becoming aware of his sinful condition, that without the Savior's amazing saving grace all is hopeless!
Most people think because they have led a good moral life as an upstanding citizen, worked hard and raised their kids well that they will obtain eternal life when they die, but this couldn't be farther from the truth. Jesus told the rich boy to keep the commandments and he said he had but that is impossible because no one can keep the commandments but One, so the boy was convicted of being a liar! Next, Jesus told him to sell all of his possessions and give to the poor, but he couldn't so he was convicted of greed and lastly to come follow the Lord in obedience but once again the boy refused and couldn't do it. Would it have been right to lead the boy in a prayer when his heart wasn't right with God or as Jesus did, preach the true gospel of salvation that demands a man to repent and follow the Lord in obedience?
The choice to obtain eternal life is yours for the asking if you truly admit you have sinned against a holy God who loves you enough to send His Son to die for you. If you will be honest about your spiritual condition and allow the Holy Spirit to convict you, repent of an evil lifestyle and be willing to give your heart and soul to the Lord Jesus Christ asking for forgiveness and believing in His death, burial and subsequent resurrection you will be saved and your sins will be washed away with His blood! If you will truly in all honesty, do this, you will receive His amazing saving grace and be safe in His arms forever!
When this flesh and heart shall fail, and mortal life shall cease, I shall possess within the veil, a life of joy and peace. When we've been here ten thousand years bright shining as the sun. We've no less days to sing God's praise than when we've first begun. Amazing Grace, John Newton, 1725-1807