Today the Lord has put it on my heart to go back to the basics. We as humans love to make everything so complex but life does not have to be so confusing. Life really is what you make of it. I wouldn’t doubt that you’ve heard this message before but today I ask you to try and listen with fresh ears and an open heart.
“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.” (John 3:16)
I’m sure you would agree with me that there is something wrong with humanity. There is an evil that corrupts man. I’m sure you would also agree with me that we have something called a conscience which lets us know in our hearts what is morally right and wrong. I believe our conscience is a gift from God and through our sense of right and wrong we can also sense an ultimate good. This ultimate good is God and He instills in us a longing to find Him and search for Him. C.S. Lewis and others have argued that if there is no such thing as a spiritual side to us then why do we have a spiritual longing? If life were meaningless then why do we have something inside of us that tells us otherwise and leaves us searching for the answers?
God has given us the answer. He has revealed Himself to us through His word—the Bible. God sacrificed His son Jesus so that you and I could be saved. This was the only possible way we could be made right with God who is everything good. Every man has his sins upon him but by the sacrifice of Jesus Christ crucified we can be forgiven and reconciled with God. Because of God’s love for you and I He was willingly and brutally murdered on the cross so that our salvation could be justified. Jesus was then resurrected from the dead to show that He is all powerful and that He is God and not even death has control over Him. God out of His amazing love offers us salvation for free because He has already paid the price but people constantly reject this gift. Why? I think it’s because people over complicate it and make God into something that He is not.
Often I’ve heard people reject the idea of the gospel because they say: “What about little Joey on a deserted island out in the middle of the ocean that has never heard the news of Jesus?” I say don’t let a made up stranger that has not heard the good news keep you from accepting it. The Bible mentions many times that God’s judgments are just. From knowing this you don’t have to worry about little Joey. Situations like that are rightfully left in God’s hands.
I don’t think the problem lies in that people have not heard the Gospel but perhaps it’s the opposite. They have heard the Gospel so many times and rejected it so many times it’s lost its meaning and significance. There are bumper stickers, billboards and signs everywhere that say “Jesus loves you” but people see these and put no thought into the meaning behind it. I think many people have a completely distorted view of Jesus and Christianity. Much of this distorted view can be blamed on the church itself and the commercialization of Christianity. I urge you to not let other people give you your perspective of Jesus. Don’t believe the view you’ve come to have by watching hypocritical, judgmental Christians. Forget about any distorted, commercialized or religious view you may have of Jesus. Today I challenge you to find out for yourself who Jesus is. Pick up the Bible and read one of the 4 Gospel books (Matthew, Mark, Luke and John). Pay extra close attention to the words of Jesus in red. Get to know the real Jesus and find out the true meaning behind all the signs declaring “Jesus loves you.” Albert Einstein—though never a confessed Christian—is quoted saying “No one can read the Gospels without feeling the actual presence of Jesus.” The only problem with Einstein is he was too analytical. He tried to intellectually understand God and break the system down into something like an equation. We will never fully understand God so please get this notion out of your head. Einstein and so many others take God’s simple system and make it too complex to understand by analyzing it. They then end up rejecting it because of their own misunderstanding of God. Let me try to put this into human perspective. Could an ant ever understand the way a human thinks and operates? The message of the Gospel is simple; it is man that makes it complex. Jesus loves you and wants nothing more but to wrap you in His arms and comfort you. He desperately wants to help you and bring peace to your life but you refuse to even acknowledge Him.
Today you have heard the Gospel. Today you are faced with a choice. Jesus said “He who is not with me is against me.” There’s no such thing as a half Christian. There’s no middle ground—though you may have made one up in your head to comfort you in your decision of rejecting Jesus. Please don’t say “I’m not ready.” What are you waiting to be ready for? Are you planning to wait until you’re on your deathbed and then you’ll try to reconcile with God? That’s no way to live your life. There’s peace and love waiting for you right now. Galations 5:22 says “The Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self control.” Who doesn’t want these things? I know there are people reading this that in your heart you feel this is the right decision to make but you’ve been fighting it. Perhaps you’ve been fighting it for years. Jesus through the Holy Spirit is speaking to you now. I urge you to go with your heart on this one. Maybe you’ve followed your heart before with other decisions and were left disappointed. Let me give you some very important advice: do not blame God for man’s shortcomings. He is always faithful and His promises hold true. Do not let your pain caused from corrupt humanity rob you of Gods greatest gift of salvation. If you say “this sounds great but I have too many doubts of God’s existence.” Don’t worry about your doubts, take a step of faith and allow God to deal with them. Through faith He will reveal Himself to you in a personal way, but if you don’t give Him a chance you might miss out on the most important opportunity of your life. Jesus said you cannot put new wine into old wineskins because the old skins will burst. I urge you today to shed your skin and try on something new. Try living life with Jesus on your side.
If you’re thinking this makes sense and you want to give God a chance then the next step is simple. You don’t have to go out and make a public announcement. The Bible says: “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast” (Ephesians 2:8, 9 NKJV). It’s just between you and Jesus from where you are at right now. You can ask Jesus into your life and we do that by prayer. I’ve written out an example of a prayer you could use below. If you feel this is the right decision for you then follow along and speak to Jesus.
Lord I realize I am a flawed human being and with that a sinner. We all are. With this realization I ask you Jesus to forgive me and help me. Walk with me through my life. I give my life to you so that you can bring life back to mine. Fill me with your Holy Spirit Father God and teach me to be a true disciple of Christ. From this day forward I will follow you. Amen.
If you have just said that prayer then know that God has written your name down in the book of life! All of heaven is rejoicing over your decision! The next step would be reading one of the Gospel books in the Bible and getting to know Jesus better. Build a relationship through prayer. He will guide you from there.
Thank you Lord for your word and thank you for the peace you have brought to my life! I pray for anyone reading this that you would speak to their hearts and draw them near to you so that they might experience the same undeserved grace you have shed so mercifully on me.
-I Want To Believe In God [dot com]