John 3:16-17 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.
Normally, my morning devotions are written as an encouragement to myself with hopes of encouraging others, but today’s word is a little different. I recognized a trait in myself a couple of years ago. I realized that I was a bit of a narrow minded christian. Yep, I admit it. My narrow mindedness revolved around the fact that I had been brought up in church my whole life, and I just assumed that everyone I knew had that same good fortune. I was wrong. When I began to ask people where they attended church, I was overwhelmed by the number of responses I received from people telling me that they didn’t really go to church. It blew me away and broke my heart. As christians, we walk around with the absolute best news in the world, and we forget to share it with others. In case by chance you are reading this and you don’t know Christ, please keep reading. This one is for you!
We Mississippi Baptist refer to accepting Christ as our Lord and Savior as getting “saved”. I can remember a few years ago when joyfully discussing a co-workers child getting saved when a Catholic co-worker asked what we meant by the term “getting saved”. Narrow minded me thought everyone knew what that meant. It became apparent to me that even from church to church our “christianese” is different. See how narrow minded I was? At any rate, I explained what getting saved means, and I would like to try to do that today. It’s important so please stick with me.
God created the heavens and the earth. If you read Genesis 1:26, you will see the plural pronoun “our” when God said let us make man in our image. This shows us the trinity of God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit’s presence at the time of the creation of earth and everything on it. There was a plan for you and I from the very beginning. Flip over to Matthew, and you can read about the birth of the Messiah. God sent His Son, Jesus to earth to be born as man, fully God and fully man, for a purpose. The purpose was for you and I to have a personal relationship with the Father and enjoy eternity with Him in heaven. You see, Jesus was crucified on a cross. He was crucified for the sins of mankind. He was completely sinless and perfect in every way. He had never so much as told a little white lie. Yet, He suffered a horrible agonizing death on the cross so that our sins could be forgiven. Three days later, He arose from the dead. The grave could not contain Him. Death could not win. He ascended to heaven but promises to return, and between you and me, that time looks like it is drawing near! When He ascended, He left with us a comforter, the Holy Spirit, and when we accept Christ as our Lord and Savior, the Holy Spirit resides within us to comfort us, lead us in the right direction, let us know when we are doing wrong, and helps to keep us on the right path.
I know this may sound like some big crazy sci-fi story. Who in the world would die for sinners? Who would selflessly die for murderers, thieves, liars, and even for me? Who would suffer an agonizing painful death so that I may live eternally? His name is Jesus. He is God in the flesh, and He loves you so much that He did all of this just for you! Why would He do that? Because He loves you! When we die, our souls will have a final destination: heaven or hell. With Jesus, your final address will be heaven. Without Him, it will be hell.
How do you get Jesus? How do you get saved? It doesn’t cost even one red cent! All you have to do is admit you are a sinner. We all are sinners. Read Romans 3:23, Roman’s 6:23, and I John 1:9. Believe that He died on the cross for your sins and was resurrected from the dead. Read John 3:16. And finally confess and choose Christ. Confess and allow Jesus to be in charge of your life. Read Romans 10:9 and Romans 10:13.
People ask me all the time how I always keep a smile on my face or why I always seem happy even when things aren’tgoing well. Happiness comes and goes, but the joy of knowing Jesus as my personal Savior continues through all of the goodness and badness life throws at me because I know that He is mine and I am His! Read Roman’s 15:13. Why don’t you get to know Him today?