How to get to heaven – What it Isn’t
Many people believe that the answer to the question of how to get to heaven is to be a good person. For some, being good means not being bad. One or more of the following may describe you: You haven’t murdered anyone. You don’t steal. You don’t curse, too much. You don’t lie, too often. You’re not a drug addict. You don’t cheat. You rarely gamble. Your conscience is clear because you aren’t nearly as bad as the people you read about in the newspapers or see on television. You’re just like everyone else you know and you can’t all be going to hell. So, you’re pretty sure that after you die God is going to let you into His heaven, right?
Many others believe that the answer to the question in how to get to heaven revolves around doing good deeds. One or more of the following may describe you: You give money to beggars or food to the homeless standing on street corners. You’re actively involved in civic and community affairs. You generously donate your time, talents, and/or your money to non-profit and charitable organizations. You’re better than most of the people you know. In fact, you’re so good that you‘re convinced that, after you die, God will absolutely let you into His heaven, right?
There are others who believe that their religious rituals will be their ticket into heaven. This may describe you: You embrace religious beliefs that tell you how to live a spiritual life. Your religion may tell you that there is a God, but it does not tell you how to have a personal relationship with Him. And, despite all of your religious rituals, your religion does not guarantee that following those rituals will get you into God’s heaven, right?
How to get to heaven – Believe the truth!
The truth is that there is only one way for any human being to get to heaven and that is to believe in the Lord Jesus Christ.
Every human being is, by nature, a sinful being. The Bible says that our efforts at doing “good deeds” are not acceptable in the sight of God (Ephesians 2:8-9). God alone is holy. God alone is good. So, God has made a way for sinful human beings to enter into His heaven.
God is the only perfect Being in the entire universe, and He came to earth 2,000 years ago, as a man — Jesus. His mother was a virgin by the name of Mary. But, Mary was not impregnated by a man, but by the Holy Spirit of the Living God. She gave birth to the Son of God, the Lord Jesus Christ.
God’s laws required that a life be taken to save a life. Mankind was so sinful that the animal sacrifices of the Jewish people could no longer cleanse them of their sins. So, God sacrificed Himself, through the Person of the Lord Jesus Christ, so that our sins could be forgiven through the blood of Jesus Christ. During His time on earth, Jesus led a perfect, sinless life.
Jesus Christ died on a cross. He was buried in a tomb for three days and, on the third day, He was raised from the dead. After forty days, He returned to heaven, where He currently reigns. He will return to earth a second time to claim those who have confessed their belief in Him.
How to get to heaven – Make it Personal
Jesus died so that those who believe in Him would no longer be condemned to an eternity apart from God. If you want to be assured of going to heaven after you die and you believe that Jesus Christ died to save you from the penalty for your sins, answer these questions.
Do you understand that you are a sinner, and you believe that Jesus Christ came as the one and only Redeemer of sin? Are you ready to receive God’s gift of His Son, Jesus Christ? If so, believe in Christ, repent of your sins, and commit the rest of your life to Him as Lord:“Father, I know that I have broken your laws and my sins have separated me from you. I am truly sorry, and now I want to turn away from my past sinful life toward you. Please forgive me, and help me avoid sinning again. I believe that your son, Jesus Christ died for my sins, was resurrected from the dead, is alive, and hears my prayer. I invite Jesus to become the Lord of my life, to rule and reign in my heart from this day forward. Please send your Holy Spirit to help me obey You, and to do Your will for the rest of my life. In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.””Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit” (Acts 2:38).
If you decided receive Jesus today, welcome to God’s family. Now, as a way to grow closer to Him, the Bible tells us to follow up on our commitment.Get baptized as commanded by Christ.
Tell someone else about your new faith in Christ.
Spend time with God each day. It does not have to be a long period of time. Just develop the daily habit of praying to Him and reading His Word. Ask God to increase your faith and your understanding of the Bible.
Seek fellowship with other followers of Jesus. Develop a group of believing friends to answer your questions and support you.
Find a local church where you can worship God.
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WHAT DO YOU THINK? – We have all sinned and deserve God’s judgment. God, the Father, sent His only Son to satisfy that judgment for those who believe in Him. Jesus, the creator and eternal Son of God, who lived a sinless life, loves us so much that He died for our sins, taking the punishment that we deserve, was buried, and rose from the dead according to the Bible. If you truly believe and trust this in your heart, receiving Jesus alone as your Savior, declaring, “Jesus is Lord,” you will be saved from judgment and spend eternity with God in heaven.