May 24, 2003
GP 1955Compiled 3/84
1. JESUS CAME TO TRY TO MAKE SALVATION AS EASY AS HE POSSIBLY COULD!—And that's why they crucified Him, that's why they killed Him, because the Church System of the day as good as said it couldn't be done without them, without following all of their complicated laws, traditions & religious rigmarole!
2. BUT JESUS CAME & SHOWED THEM THAT THEY DIDN'T HAVE TO GO TO CHURCH ON SUNDAY—or Saturday or Friday or any other day of the week! They didn't have to follow the Church laws & rules & regulations & the Ten Commandments & all the rest. All they had to do was simply confess that they were sinners & needed Salvation & ask Jesus to give it to them!
3. THE WHOLE IDEA IS SO SIMPLE & SO CHILDLIKE THAT JESUS SAID THAT YOU MUST BECOME AS A LITTLE CHILD to enter His spiritual Kingdom of love, joy & happiness here & now in this life—as well as a beautiful, wonderful & thrilling Eternity in His Heavenly Kingdom in the next life! He said, "Except ye be converted, & become as little children, ye shall not enter into the Kingdom of Heaven!" & "Except a man be born again, he cannot even see or understand the Kingdom of God!" (Mat.18:3; John 3:3)
4. OF COURSE, NOBODY CAN REALLY FULLY UNDERSTAND SALVATION. That's why Jesus said that you must be like a little child & just accept it by faith! The Bible says that the love & peace of God "passeth all understanding." (Eph.3:19; Phil.4:7) It's a love which passes your understanding & lands right down in your heart! It is something you don't have to understand. In fact, you can't understand it‚ it's impossible to understand God's Love!—All you can do is receive it!
5. DOES A BABY UNDERSTAND THE LOVE OF ITS MOTHER? Does a little child understand the love of its father?—No, he just feels it, knows it, accepts it & receives it! Even before he understands language, before he even learns to talk, he understands love, he feels love & he trusts His parents because they love him. He hasn't read it in the Bible, he hasn't read love letters from his mother‚ he simply feels it in her love & sees it in her actions. So you don't have to understand all about God to know His wonderful love & Salvation in Jesus.—All you have to do is receive it!
6. DON'T TRY TO FIGURE HIM OUT—JUST LET HIM IN! It's just that simple! All you have to do is receive Jesus, God's Son, as your Saviour by asking Him into your heart! You can do it right now, if you want God's answer to all of your problems & His love & happiness to fill your heart & life with joy & with a new plan & purpose in living! He'll meet all your needs & solve all your problems! He's just that wonderful, & it's all just that simple! Why not try Him?
7. JESUS SAID‚ "I AM THE DOOR"—into His Father's House, the Kingdom of God—"by Me‚ if any man enter in‚ he shall be saved." (John 10:9) Therefore‚ if you want to get to Heaven, you have to walk through Jesus, the open Door. All you have to do is believe in the Door, walk through it by faith, receive Jesus, & you're saved!— You've entered the Heavenly sphere of Salvation, Heaven on Earth, the Kingdom of God, just by walking through the open Door, Jesus!
8. THE BIBLE TELLS US THAT "GOD IS LOVE"! (1John 4:8) And what did God do to prove that He is Love, that He loves us?— "God so loved the World"—you & I—"that He gave His only begotten Son‚ that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life." (John 3:16) God loved you so much that He gave Jesus to suffer for your sins‚ to take the punishment & the judgement that you deserve for you. "In this was manifested the Love of God toward us, because that God sent His only begotten Son into the World, that we might live through Him." (1John 4:9) Jesus is the manifestation of the Love of God.
9. "OH, WHY CAN'T YOU JUST LEAVE JESUS OUT OF IT?" SOME PEOPLE ASK. "Why do you have to use that Name? Why does He always have to be the symbol? Why can't you just say God, & speak of God only? Then we could accept it much easier, if you wouldn't insist on using that name of Jesus!"
10. "WELL," I USUALLY REPLY, "WHY NOT?" If He really is God's Son, & God has chosen Jesus to reveal Himself to the World & to show His Love, then God Himself has insisted on it!—"Love Me, love My Son!" These are God's conditions, not ours. "Whosoever denieth the Son, the same hath not the Father: But he that acknowledgeth the Son hath the Father also." (1John 2:23) God has insisted that we recognise & love His Son, & Jesus Himself said, "I am the Way‚ the Truth‚ & the Life, no man cometh unto the Father, but by Me!" (John 14:6)
11. SO ALL YOU NEED FOR SALVATION IS JESUS! We can't even comprehend God the Father, He's too great a concept for us to even dream of! "As high as the Heavens are above the Earth, so high are His ways above our ways & His thoughts above our thoughts; & even the Heaven of Heavens cannot contain Him!" (Isa.55:9; 1Kings 8:27) None of us can really grasp how great & how marvellous & how wonderful God our Father is, far beyond the mind of man & our wildest imaginations, for He & His Spirit surpass the whole Universe! But He has stooped to send us His Son, Jesus Christ, to show us what He Himself is like.
12. THIS THEN, IS THE MOST IMPORTANT WILL OF GOD FOR YOU: THAT YOU RECOGNISE JESUS AS THE SON OF GOD & believe on Him as your Saviour & receive His Love from God manifested in His death on the cross, when He took the punishment demanded by God's perfect laws for your sins, so that you could be forgiven, so that you could be saved.
13. WHY DO YOU NEED TO BE FORGIVEN?—Because we are all sinners. The Bible says, "For all have sinned & come short of the glory of God" (Rom.3:23)‚ & "the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ, His Son." (Rom.6:23)
14. SO WE MUST FIRST CONFESS THAT WE KNOW WE'RE SINNERS. But some folks say‚ "I'm pretty good! God will surely give me credit for being pretty good, at least a lot better than many others."—No‚ I'm sorry, that's not enough. Because you can't go to Heaven unless you're perfect, & nobody's perfect. Everybody makes mistakes, everybody's sinned.
15. THE KING JAMES VERSION OF THE BIBLE SAYS THAT "ALL OUR OWN RIGHTEOUSNESS IS AS FILTHY RAGS." (Isa.64:6) When I studied this passage in the original Hebrew, I found that it literally says that our own self-righteousness, our own goodness, is like "filthy menstruous rags."—That's how God looks on the so– called "good" people, the people who pride themselves on being better than others: "I'm good! I don't do this, I don't do that, I don't do so-&-so!"—What we need to do is just give up trying to be good ourselves & honestly admit, "I'm just no good!—I'm bad, I'm a sinner, of course I make mistakes!"
16. THAT'S WHY JESUS DIED‚ BECAUSE WE'RE ALL SINNERS & IT WAS IMPOSSIBLE FOR US TO BE PERFECT, it was impossible for us to keep God's perfect laws like the Laws of Moses, impossible! No man can keep the Ten Commandments, it's just impossible! Only Jesus was perfect & that's why He could pay the price of our sins & God could forgive us‚ because He took our punishment for us. He was the only One Who was perfect, & that's why He could give us Salvation as a gift, because we could never earn it, we could never be perfect, we always make mistakes & commit sins!—You!—And me!
17. IT'S JUST LIKE A PARDON: GOD HAS OFFERED PARDON TO THE GUILTY, & it doesn't matter how bad you are, how wicked you are or what you've done—it doesn't matter to God! If you'll just confess your sins to Him, ask Him to forgive you & take Jesus into your heart, He'll save you!
18. YOU COULDN'T LIFT YOURSELF UP BY YOUR OWN BOOTSTRAPS, YOU COULDN'T SAVE YOURSELF‚ YOU COULDN'T BE GOOD ENOUGH, IT'S IMPOSSIBLE! If you were good enough to be saved, you'd be God Himself!—But you're not God, neither am I. We're all sinners, we have all sinned, we all need His love & mercy to be saved, & we find that love & mercy in Jesus Christ!
19. WE CANNOT SAVE OURSELVES BY OUR OWN WORKS, our own goodness, our own attempts to keep His laws & to love Him, or even our own endeavours to find & follow His Truth! Salvation is a gift of God performed by a miraculous transformation of our lives when we accept His Truth in the Love of His Son Jesus by the work of His Holy Spirit.
20. "FOR BY GRACE ARE YE SAVED THROUGH FAITH; & THAT NOT OF YOURSELVES: IT IS THE GIFT OF GOD!—Not of works‚ lest any man should boast!" (Eph.2:8,9) You cannot save yourself no matter how good you try to be! You can't be good enough, you can't be perfect enough to earn, merit or deserve the Heavenly perfection of His Own Holy Salvation by His Own grace, love & mercy!
21. THERE'S NOTHING YOU CAN DO TO GET IT EXCEPT JUST RECEIVE IT BY FAITH!—That's all! You can't be good enough, you can't work hard enough, you can't get it no matter how hard you try! You just have to let go & receive it from the Lord! You have to humble yourself & acknowledge that you don't deserve it‚ that you're just a lost sinner‚ & that there's no way you can get it except just by the grace of God!
22. WE RECEIVE SALVATION AS A PURE GIFT‚ NOT BECAUSE WE'RE GOOD ENOUGH or because we deserve it or earn it‚ & not by any works we have done or any works of the law or law-keeping. But we get Salvation just because He loves us & He gives it, & all we have to do is just believe & receive, nothing else.—It is the gift of God!
23. BUT MANY PEOPLE ARE TOO PROUD TO ACCEPT A GIFT. They want to work for everything they receive.—That is the religion of most of the churches, that if you're good enough & go to church enough & all the rest, you can save yourself. But that's a lie! No amount of church-going or masses or prayers or anything else is going to save you, only Jesus saves! "For there is one God, & one Mediator between God & men, the Man Christ Jesus!" And "neither is there Salvation in any other: for there is none other name under Heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved!" (1Tim.2:5; Acts 4:12)
24. ONLY JESUS CAN FREE US FROM SIN & ITS POWER & ITS CONDEMNATION!—"For if we confess our sins, He is faithful & just to forgive us our sins, & to cleanse us from all unrighteousness! For the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanseth us from all sin!" (1John 1:9,7)—No matter what you've done!
25. HE'LL FORGIVE YOU FOR EVERY SIN IN THE BOOK, EXCEPT ONE, & THAT'S REJECTING JESUS!—For that is "blasphemy against the Holy Ghost," the Spirit of Truth. (Mark 3:28,29) The only unpardonable sin is the sin of rejecting the Holy Ghost, of refusing to heed the Voice of God & of spurning His Love & His Salvation in Christ. He says that it won't be forgiven in this life, nor even in the World to come. (Mat.12:32)
26. SO THE GREAT CONDEMNATION IS NOT THAT MEN ARE ALREADY SINFUL, which God can forgive & does forgive if we receive His pardon through His Son. But the great condemnation is rejecting Jesus Christ! "This is the condemnation, that light is come into the World, & men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil." (John 3:19)
27. BUT IF YOU COME TO THE LIGHT—JESUS‚ "THE LIGHT OF THE WORLD" (John 8:12)—"there is no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus" (Rom.8:1), to them that have received Christ & His forgiveness. The Lord says, "Let the wicked forsake his way, & the unrighteous man his thoughts: & let him return unto the Lord‚ & He will abundantly pardon. Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow! Though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool!" (Isa.55:7;1:18)
28. YOU CAN START FROM SCRATCH WITH THE LORD, for when you receive Jesus as your Saviour, you are spiritually "born again" & are a "new creature in Christ Jesus"! (John 3:3; 2Cor.5:17) God says He will "blot out thy sins as a cloud, & as a thick cloud, He'll put them behind His back‚ & will remember them against you no more." (Isa.44:22; 38:17; Heb.8:12)
29. AND ONCE YOU HAVE RECEIVED JESUS, YOU CANNOT LOSE HIM‚ He will never cast you out! "All that the Father giveth Me shall come to Me; & him that cometh to Me I will in no wise cast out." (John 6:37) If you have Jesus, if you have the Lord, then you have life, eternal life, & you cannot lose eternal life! You can lose your physical life, but never your eternal life!
30. SALVATION IS FOREVER! ONCE SAVED, YOU ARE ALWAYS SAVED, because God cannot lie or go back on His Word or on Himself! God doesn't change His mind! Once you've received Jesus Christ & you let Him into your heart & you love Him & you know Him & you believe on Him as your Saviour‚ you are a saved child of God & you're going to live forever! Once you are "born again" as His child‚ you will always be His child! You can't be unborn!
31. "HE THAT BELIEVETH ON THE SON HATH EVERLASTING LIFE." (John 3:36)—Right now! No ifs, ands or buts about it! No "providing you're a good boy & go to church every Sunday"! It doesn't say you're going to have it, it says you have it right now!—"Hath everlasting life!" If you stand in danger of losing it 51 times a day, how can you have everlasting life? It's not everlasting if it only lasts a few minutes, till your next evil thought or next evil deed‚ as a lot of misguided preachers & churches teach!
32. HOW CAN YOU BE SAVED & UNSAVED, SAVED & UNSAVED, 100 times a day like some of these poor, ignorant Christians believe? They say, "Well, I won't know if I'm gonna make it to Heaven until I'm dead & He balances up & measures all my good deeds against my bad deeds. If the good ones out-weigh the bad ones, well then maybe I'll make it." They never really know when or where they stand or how or if or what! It's enough to make a nervous wreck out of you‚ & that's what a lot of them wind up becoming—nervous wrecks!
33. BUT THANK GOD, "THEY THAT BELIEVE HAVE ENTERED INTO REST!" (Heb.4:3) We can have rest & peace of mind, knowing that we don't have to worry about whether we're good enough or if we've been too bad or if we're going to make it or not, every day wondering whether we're going to be saved or not. I wonder what such doubtful Christians think Jesus died for, anyhow? If you could save yourself, the Lord wouldn't have had to give His life for you!
34. TRUE, YOU CAN KEEP YOURSELF IN HIS WILL & IN LINE WITH HIS BLESSINGS by obeying the Lord, doing His work, being fruitful & so on. But you can't keep yourself saved! Jesus did that once & forever, & His gift is eternal life!—Not a sometime thing, saved & lost ten thousand times a day, there's no such thing! If you haven't got eternal Salvation, you haven't got Salvation! If you're not saved forever, you're not saved!
35. GRACE PLUS FAITH PLUS NOTHING!—THAT'S SALVATION! You don't have to be good to get saved & you don't have to be good to stay saved! But this does not mean that you can just live as you please once you are saved. If you are really a Christian you will always be saved, but if you commit sins against the Lord & others which are unconfessed, unrepented of & not made right‚ you will suffer for them in some way‚ "for whom the Lord loveth, He chasteneth, & scourgeth every son whom He receiveth." (Heb.12:6) But even if you are disobedient, rebellious & chastened of the Lord for your sins, if you are saved, you'll always be saved!
36. WHEN, AS A YOUNG CHRISTIAN, I READ JOHN 3:36, THAT ENDED ALL MY WORRIES!—I didn't worry about it anymore! "He that hath the Son hath everlasting life!" That was it! I knew I had Jesus, & I knew He didn't keep popping in & out of my heart! He was there all the time. He says, "Lo‚ I am with you always‚ even unto the end of the World!" (Mat.28:20) He says, "I will never leave thee nor forsake thee." (Heb.13:5) & "I give unto them eternal life; & they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of My hand." (John 10:28)
37. SO THANK THE LORD THAT WE CAN BE SAVED & KNOW IT! And of course, if you really are, you'll show it too. You'll no longer be like everybody else in the rest of the World, you'll be different! You'll be a "new creature in Christ Jesus, old things will be passed away, behold all things will become new!" (2Cor.5:17)—There'll be a change, a real change!
38. WHEN YOU RECEIVE JESUS, YOUR WHOLE LIFE WILL BE CHANGED LIKE A NEWBORN BABY BORN INTO A WHOLE NEW WORLD with a new spirit as a new child of God! So don't be surprised if you actually feel different & even think differently & are happier than you have ever been before! Jesus said it is like being born again, becoming a new person, & the old "bad you" with all your old sins is gone forever & there is a whole "new you‚" much better & happier than ever before! (John 3:3; 2Cor.5:17)
39. HIS COMING INTO YOUR LIFE NOT ONLY RENEWS & PURIFIES & REGENERATES YOUR SPIRIT, but it also renews your mind, literally breaking old connections & reflexes & gradually rebuilding & rewiring you into a whole new computer system with an utterly different outlook on life, a new way of looking at the World, & with new reactions to nearly everything around you.
40. IT'S IMPOSSIBLE FOR MEN TO REALLY CHANGE THEMSELVES‚ BUT IT'S POSSIBLE FOR GOD TO CHANGE ANYONE! It's never possible for us to change our hearts, it's only possible for us to ask. And when Jesus comes into your heart‚ everything is changed—everything! You are a new person! And if you're not changed, you don't have Jesus‚ because He changes people.—No matter how good you are, He'll make you better!
41. IF YOU ARE GENUINELY SAVED, BORN AGAIN, A NEW CREATURE IN CHRIST JESUS, OLD THINGS ARE PASSED AWAY & ALL THINGS ARE BECOME NEW. And if you "abide in Him & He abides in you, then you shall bring forth fruit." (John 15:5) You can't help it! If you are genuinely saved, if you are genuinely born again, if you really have God in your heart, if you have Salvation, if you have Jesus, you're a new creature & you will be different. You don't have anything to do with it, all you do is ask Him to come in & He does it all!
42. SO EXPECT THINGS TO BE DIFFERENT!—Not totally different perhaps, as you're still human, you're still in the flesh. But you'll find a change in your spirit‚ in your thoughts, in your heart & in your direction. You'll be happy & overflowing with love! Because if you have Jesus, you have Love!—For "God is Love!" (1John 4:8)
43. DO YOU HAVE JESUS? HAVE YOU TAKEN HIM INTO YOUR OWN HEART & BEEN BORN AGAIN BY HIS SPIRIT? Are you truly changed, a new person‚ a new creature, old things passed away & all things become new? You don't have to walk down to an altar, you don't have to stand up, sit down, turn over or stand on your hands.—It has nothing to do with the position of your body or your eyes or your head! It's all in how you position your heart! If your heart is humble before God & you know you're a sinner & need His help, all you have to do is ask Him into your heart!
44. JESUS SAID, "BEHOLD, I STAND AT THE DOOR & KNOCK: if any man hear My voice, & open the door, I will come in to him, & will sup with him, & he with Me." (Rev.3:20) Salvation is so powerful, but God will not force it on you. His Love is all-powerful, but He won't make you receive it. Jesus knocks at the door, He doesn't kick it in! He could break it down or pulverise it with one look, but He refuses to force His way into your heart.
45. HE SIMPLY ASKS TO COME IN & YOU HAVE TO INVITE HIM. That is the limitation He has set & the condition He requires. You have to let Him come in, but if you won't invite Him willingly, He won't force His way in.
46. SO PLEASE TAKE HIM NOW! He wants to save you, but He can't do it unless you want Him to. You have to ask Him to come in. Gentle Jesus stands there, meek & mild, in loving patience‚ & perhaps has been for years, waiting at your heart's door.—Knocking again & again by His Word, by His Love, perhaps by some sad incident or the parting of a loved one, a death or sickness or pain.
47. BUT GOD HAS LEFT THE MAJESTY OF CHOICE UP TO YOU AS AN INDIVIDUAL‚ & nobody can ever force you to accept Jesus Christ as your Saviour. You alone can make that choice, if & when you want to. He certainly wants to be your Saviour & He will come in, just as soon as you ask Him. But you must make the decision, not us, not even Jesus! He's left that choice up to you!
48. WILL YOU ACCEPT GOD'S LOVE IN JESUS CHRIST AS YOUR OWN PERSONAL SAVIOUR? Do you have Jesus in your heart?—Then you are saved forever & bound for Heaven & will never be lost! Are you saved?—If you're not sure, make sure right now & receive Him personally as your own Lord & Saviour by sincerely praying this simple prayer:
49. "LORD JESUS‚ PLEASE FORGIVE ME FOR ALL MY SINS. I believe You died for me. I believe You are the Son of God, & I now ask You to come into my life. I open the door & I invite You into my heart. Jesus‚ please come in & help me to love others & tell them about You, that they may find You too. Help me to read Your Word & understand it by Your Spirit. In Jesus' name I ask, amen."
50. IF YOU PRAY THIS PRAYER & MEAN IT, JESUS WILL COME IN! Jesus promised that if you open the door to your heart, if you ask Him to come in, He will come in!—Period! So once you do that, once you believe His Word, His promise, you are saved!
51. TRUE SALVATION IS JUST PURE FAITH IN GOD'S WORD, NOT FAITH IN FEELINGS! Your feelings may change from day to day, sometimes good‚ sometimes bad‚ but the Bible, God's Word, never changes! So put your faith in His Word, for "faith comes by hearing the Word of God!" (Rom.10:17) The Bible is definite, so no matter how you feel, if you ask Jesus to come in, He comes in, because He said so!
52. OF COURSE BEING BORN AGAIN‚ RECEIVING JESUS‚ WILL RESULT IN A CHANGE IN YOUR LIFE, AS YOU SHOW YOUR FAITH BY YOUR WORKS. (Jam.2:18) But it is not necessarily always manifested at the moment by a big emotional feeling or outward show—although it often is. But regardless of your feelings, God's Word is always the same & Jesus will always come in when asked!—So receive Him now!
53. "BELIEVE ON THE LORD JESUS CHRIST & THOU SHALT BE SAVED!" (Acts 16:31) God bless you with His Love & Salvation!—Now & Forever!