The Romans were famous for building roads throughout their empire and some could practically take you all the way to Rome itself. All you had to do was step out on these roads to get to where you wanted to go. Now I would to introduce you to another sort of Roman Road. This one takes you through the Book of Romans in the New Testament of the Bible and leads home to Heaven if you follow it all the way, step by step. We'll also make a few short stops in some other books for clarity. So, let's begin our journey...
STEP ONE: Let me ask you a question: IF YOU DIED RIGHT NOW, DO YOU KNOW FOR SURE THAT YOU WOULD GO TO HEAVEN?
Most people are surprised by that sort of a question because it may be that they were taught to believe that no one can know for sure that they are going to heaven when they die. However, the Bible teaches otherwise. First, let's see what it says about something that can easily keep you out of Heaven...
STEP TWO: Read this verse in Romans 3:10
As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one:
Everyone is a sinner, even those who try to "be good" or "do good works". Most people would not argue with that fact and that is made even more clear in the next step.
STEP THREE: Read this verse in Romans 3:23
For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;
Even people who try to be good are told, in no uncertain terms, that their efforts are in vain. God has already judged the actions of all humans and found them to be sinful.
STEP FOUR: Read this verse in Romans 5:12
Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:
Adam was the first man and his sin in the Garden of Eden caused every person that followed to be born with a sinful nature. That means that no matter how hard we try, we are going to do things that are wrong at one time or another.
STEP FIVE: Read this verse in Romans 6:23
For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. (Concentrate on the first part of this verse for now)
There is a wage, or payment for sin and that is PHYSICAL DEATH. We know this because Adam eventually grew old and died and so have people born after him ever since. But a lot of people do not know that there is also another kind of death included in that wage for sin. One that can keep you out of Heaven.
STEP SIX: Read this verse in Revelation 20:14
And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.
The wage for sins is not just physical death, but also spiritual death in Hell. Hell is a place of eternal regret and torment. No one in their right mind would want to go there. Fortunately, God has provided an escape from that terror.
STEP SEVEN: Read this verse in Romans 6:23 again.
For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. (Concentrate on the second part of this verse)
God offers us the gift of Salvation. He sent his son, Jesus Christ, to the Earth to die on the cross for our sins. Because it is a gift, there is NOTHING we can do to earn it. It's FREE.
STEP EIGHT: Read this verse in Ephesians 2:8-9
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.
These verses make it crystal clear that NO ONE can earn Salvation. You cannot work or buy your way to Heaven and no person can claim that they got there because they were better than someone else. Christ already paid the penalty for our SINS - past, present and future. It's a GIFT, and like any other gift, all we need do to have it is to ACCEPT IT and the Bible clearly tells us how to do that.
STEP NINE: Read this verse in Romans 10:9-10, 13
That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation... For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.
All we need do to accept God's FREE GIFT of Salvation through Jesus Christ is to ask for it. According to verse 13, anyone who calls upon the Name of the Lord will be saved (no matter how good or bad you may believe you are). According to verses 9 and 10, all we have to do to accept the GIFT of Salvation is to believe in our heart that Jesus Christ died for our sins and that God raised Him from the dead and to confess that belief with our mouth to God. We can do that by praying a simple prayer. Perhaps you would like to do that right now. if so, you can use the prayer below to ask God for His Gift and be sure of Heaven immediately after you pray!
A SIMPLE PRAYER TO ACCEPT JESUS AS SAVIOR: Dear God, I admit that I am a Sinner. I now believe that your Son, Jesus Christ, died for my sins and was raised from the dead. I accept your gift of Salvation and ask that Jesus save me from Hell right now. Thank you, Lord.
STEP TEN: Read this verse in II Corinthians 5:17 if you have prayed a prayer to accept the Lord, you can now KNOW FOR SURE that if you died right now, you would go to Heaven! Read on if you have accepted Jesus as your Savior...
Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.
Here are a few BASICS of your NEW LIFE:
The Bible clearly teaches that once we accept Jesus as our Savior, we begin a new life in Christ. Because we are still not perfect and will continue to make mistakes from time to time, God is always ready to forgive us when we do sin as long as we express regret at making bad choices and ask for His forgiveness through prayer. Those sins will not send us to Hell, but God (like any Father who cares about their child) will punish us here on Earth in order to make us aware that we have done something that can cause trouble for us unless we ask for His forgiveness.
God will also send the Holy Spirit to dwell in those who accept Jesus as their Savior. He will help to keep us on the right path and open up the Scriptures so we can understand them. A good place to start reading the Bible is in the New Testament Gospel according to Luke. At the same time, it's wise to begin a daily prayer life and speak to God at least once or twice a day. He is ready, willing and able to answer our prayers and help us live a happy and fulfilling life.
As you grow in the Lord, here are a few additional steps that the Bible teaches us to take to have a more fulfilling life and a closer relationshiop with God:
- Get baptized (water baptism by immersion) as taught in the Word.
- Tell others about your new faith in Christ.
- Get in the habit of praying and reading some portion of Scripture each day.
- Fellowship with other life-minded Believers.
- Find a Bible-believing local church to attend and ,eventually, join it.
If you have the accepted the Lord and would like to tell me about it, and/or have questions, please fee free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
You also might enjoy my article, How To Receive Godís Blessing and Find Happiness. It's a good tuturial for New Believers.
- Missionary Bill