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Finally, in order to understand salvation crystal-clear you must understand genuine belief. Jesus came into the land of Judea preaching the Gospel of repentance and belief. "Repent... and believe the Gospel" (Mark 1:15)
If you realize you're a sinner, and you realize you're on you're way to Hell, and the conviction of the Spirit of God is on your heart, and you're willing to repent, then the Lord Jesus asks you to ‘Believe! I've got good news for you: it's called the Gospel.' There was a Man by the name of Jesus Christ. He was God in the flesh. He came to the earth. Wicked men put Him up on a cross. You and I were the wicked men whose sin put Him up on that cross. There He bled and died. He suffered. They took Him down from the cross and they buried Him in a grave. Three days and three nights later He arose from the grave. He is sitting on the right hand of God the Father and He is looking at you right now. He is waiting for anyone who is willing to come to Him with a repentant heart to believe Him.
"Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the Gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain. For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures; And that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures:" (1 Corinthians 15:1-4 KJV)
These are some of my favorite verses because about 18 years ago I believed on the Lord Jesus Christ and was saved. Look at Romans 10:
"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 the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on Him shall not be ashamed. For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon Him. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved." (Romans 10:9-13 KJV)
The golf course
Oh, those are wonderful verses to me. When I was 19 years old I was working at a golf course and I was given the responsibility of closing down the shop. One night, July 15, 1978, I was closing down the shop at Pebble Creek Golf Course in Lexington, Ohio. For some reason, praise be to God, my heart was weighed down with the conviction of the Spirit of God. I really felt that if I had died that night I would have split Hell wide open. I had worked there for many, many months, but just before closing the golf shop that night, for the first time in my life, I saw that there was a tract rack on the wall. I went over there that night and I picked up a tract. I read about the wonderful news of the Lord Jesus Christ and how the Lord Jesus wanted me to repent and to believe on Him and to call upon His name for salvation. I was excited because I believed it. I remember closing up the shop that night and hurriedly going to my car, a red 1977 Buick Regal with a white top. I began to drive away from that golf course and I began to pray and I began to cry. I prayed and I cried and in about five or ten minutes, I can testify to you, the Lord Jesus saved my soul and I knew I was a child of God.
Do you realize that if you understand that you're a sinner, and you understand that you're on your way to eternal judgment, and you understand that the convicting power of the Spirit of God is working in your heart, and you understand that you need to repent and to confess your sin and to forsake your sin, and you say, "Lord Jesus, I want to be your servant"...do you understand that if you'll believe the wonderful news of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and call upon the Lord Jesus you can be saved right now?
$25 Million in debt
Imagine for a moment that you are $25 Million dollars in debt. You are very anxious and concerned because if the debt is not paid, the people you owe it to are going to end your life. Even now they are in the process of hunting you down. You're on the run. A friend contacts you by phone and tells you some wonderful news: a wealthy man has heard of your dilemma and has volunteered to pay off your entire debt. The documents for proof of payment are in the mail.
Now let me ask you a question: if you believe your friend, what do you do? Do you say, "GLORY!" or something like that? Don't you do that? "Glory to God, I'm free!" I have wonderful news for you sinner friend: A very, very wealthy and compassionate man has offered to pay off your debt of sin, if you'll accept his gift on His terms. His name is Jesus. I also have the proof of payment: that document is the Bible.
Ananias looked down upon the Apostle Paul when he was still called Saul, after he was smitten on the road to Damascus, and he said, ‘Saul, stand up on your feet. Arise and be baptized and call upon the name of the Lord, washing away thy sins' (Acts 9:1-22).
Do you realize that if you're under the conviction of the Spirit of God, and you are willing to repent, if you believe the Gospel, and you call out to Jesus who is sitting at the right hand of God even now, the Lord Jesus will save your soul if you put your complete faith and trust in Him? Will you do that and wash away your sins, calling upon the name of the Lord?
There has not been a more soul-searching question asked than what Pilate said to the multitudes: "What shall I do then with Jesus, which is called Christ?" (Matthew 27:22) You have a choice: what will you do with Jesus who is called Christ?
What you do with the Lord Jesus will determine where you are in a million years. What should you do with the Lord Jesus right now? What will you do? What you do with God's Son will determine your eternal destiny and your eternal inheritance.
The auction of a wealthy man's estate
A very wealthy man amassed
a tremendous collection of expensive art. He was a widower and he had only one
son, whom he loved very much. The man had his son's portrait painted. Shortly
after the painting of this portrait, his son died unexpectedly. It crushed the
aged man's heart. Shortly after the death of his son, the aged man died also.
But before he died he made out a will. In his will he said he would like to have
all of his multi-million dollar art collection sold at an auction after his
death. They held the auction. Many people from all over the world came to bid at
pieces of this wonderful collection of art. The auctioneer stood up before
everyone and said, "Ladies and gentlemen, there are a few stipulations in
this auction that were laid out by the deceased prior to his passing. The first
stipulation is that the first painting to go up for auction is this painting of
the man's son." The auctioneer then began the bidding and all across the
crowd there wasn't a single bid. The auctioneer waited and waited and finally
the man's butler who knew the son and loved the son reached down into his pocket
and pulled out three quarters. He raised them up in the air and he said,
"This is all I have but I'll give 75 cents for the painting of his
son." The auctioneer looked around and he waited for a competing bid. There
was silence. Everyone else was waiting to bid on other paintings. Finally the
auctioneer said, "Sold for 75 cents." Then to the shock of everyone
present the auctioneer said, "The sale is now over, because the second
stipulation in this man's will was that whoever purchased the portrait of his
beloved son receives everything else for free." The butler went away that
day a very wealthy man because he loved the son. I say this to you: if you love
God's one-and-only Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, and you give everything up for
Him, then call upon the Lord Jesus and He'll give you His inheritance —
eternal life. The Bible says that if we're in Christ we are "heirs of
God, and joint-heirs with Christ" (Romans 8:17). What are you going to
do with Jesus? If you get Jesus you get everything.
What will you do with Jesus who is called Christ?
If you want to know the answer to the question, "What must I do to be saved?"... Here it is: Accept the fact that you're a sinner. Accept the fact that you're heading for eternal judgment. Don't resist the conviction of the Holy Spirit when He calls. Confess your sin. Leave your sin. Follow Jesus the rest of your life. Call upon the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. Put your complete faith and trust in God and His Word. Get a Bible and read it. if it says to do something, do it. Get to know God — you'll be spending the rest of your life with Him.
The promise is made. The invitation is open. Romans 10:13 says this: "Whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved" (Romans 10:13). That includes me and that includes you.
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Liberty To The Captives Established in June 2001