Will devoting myself to doing good and becoming a better person allow me to know God? While doing good and trying to change to be a better person is good, none of this will bring you closer to God. It will just make you a better person.
Truth: God created you, loves you and has a plan for your life. And he wants you to know him and he wants a relationship with you. John 3:16 say "For God so loved the world that he gave him only Son so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life."
Jesus came so that each one of us could know God in a personal way.
What keeps us from knowing God?
Fellowship with God was broken by sin. The Bible tells us that "All of us like sheep have gone astray; each of us has turned to his own way." Self-will and our attitude of independence is characterized as active rebellion or passive indifference toward God. It is evidence of what the Bible calls sin.
The result of sin in our lives is death...or....spiritual separation from God. We may try to get close to God though our own efforts of good deeds however we will inevitably fail.
The diagram to the right illustrates the gap between us and God. The arrows show our efforts to reach God by doing good to others or by religious rituals and trying to be a good person, etc. But none of these good works will actually cover up our sin or remove it.
Our sin is know by God and stands as a barrier between us and God. The Bible says that the penalty for sin is death or eternal separation from God.
There is only one way to God. In the Bible in John chapter 14:6 Jesus said "I am the way, and the truth, and the life, no one comes to the Father but through me."
So, how can we have a relationship with God?
The cost of sin is death. Jesus paid the price for our sin, he suffered a horrible death on the cross for you and me. He did this out of his tremendous love for us.
The diagram to the right illustrates that God has bridged the gap that separates us from Him by sending His son, Jesus Christ in our place to pay the price for our sins.
Romans 5:8 says, "God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us."
God saved us, not because of our good behaviors or the righteous things we had done. Rather, because of his great mercy toward us. He allowed Jesus' death on the cross so that our sin doesn't have to separate us from God any longer.
Instead of trying to reach God thru our own good works, he tells us how we can begin a relationship with him right now. Jesus said, "Come to me." If anyone thirsts, let him come to me and drink...out of his heart will flow rivers of living water."
It was Jesus' love for us that caused him to endure the cross. And he now invites us to come to him, that we might begin a personal relationship with him.
Just knowing what Jesus has done for us and what he is offering us is not enough. In order to truly know God we must welcome him into our life.
The Bible in John 1:12 say, "Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God."
We accept Jesus by faith. the Bible say in Ephesians 2:8-9 "for by grace have you been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not of work, that no man should glory." In other words, God's mercy and salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done.
Accepting Jesus means believing that Jesus is the Son of God, then inviting him to guide and direct your life. Jesus said, "I came that you might have life and have it more abundantly."
Here is Jesus' invitation. He said, "I'm standing at the door and I'm knocking. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in."
Consider the two circles to the right, these two circles represent two kinds of lives.
Which circle best represents your life?
Which circle would you like to have represent your life?
Begin a relationship with Jesus.....
You can receive Christ right now. Jesus said in Revelation 3:20, "I'm standing at the door and I'm knocking. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in." Would you like to respond to his invitation? Here's how.
The precise words you use to commit yourself to God are not important. He know your thoughts and the intent of your heart. If you are unsure of what to say or how to pray, this might help you put it into words:
"Dear God, I know that I am a sinner and there is nothing that I can do to save myself. I invite you to come into my heart to become my personal Lord & Savior and to forgive me of my sins. Thank you for dying on the cross for me so that I could be fully accepted by you. Only you can give me the power to change and become the person you created me to be. Thank you for forgiving me and giving me eternal life. I give my life to you. In Jesus name."
If you sincerely asked Jesus into your life just now, then. he has come into your life as he promised.
You have begun a personal relationship with God!
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