Saturday, October 13, 2012

How to be Sure of Heaven

With what I see as the world quickly spiraling down a very troubling path, my heart has been heavy for unsaved friends and family members.  There are many days when I hope the rapture will happen tomorrow and that the Lord would take us out of here.  But immediately after that though, comes the one of my friends and family members who would not be there with me and would be doomed to face a very very dark future and that makes my heart incredibly heavy. 

Below is a great explanation about how to be sure of heaven from my church's website:

The starting point for the answer is determining in what you will rest your faith in. If you place it in the Bible as God's inspired Word, the questions can readily be answered. If you do not accept the claims of the Bible, at all, or in part, or if you believe that the Bible is only a part of God's revelation to man, then your response to the questions will certainly be affected.

For those who accept that the Bible is God's Word, we have the assurance from 1 John 5:13: "These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God, that ye may know that ye have eternal life..."

There are many who will say, "I believe in God, so I must be OK." Yet, they live no differently from others who have no God. We must understand that there is a great difference between possessing knowledge about God and a genuine, life changing belief upon him. The Bible speaks of this difference in James 2:19, saying "Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble." You see, there will be no devils in Heaven although they believe that God's word is true. Genuine saving faith in the Lord Jesus Christ is reflected in a response to his word. Jesus stated several times. "Except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish."

What is repentance? The Bible defines it as a change of mind about your sins, resulting from a godly sorrow for your sins, God's Word says it this way: "To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and an inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me." (Acts 26:18)

This repentance is the element that many people see no need of. Their reasoning is: "I'm no worse a person than the average, and I live a lot better than many," or "I live better than some of the so-called Christians I've seen." Though these statements may well be true, they are based on the wrong measure; that of people to people. God sets the standard much higher. He said, "Be ye holy, as I am holy."

A careful study of the 10 Commandments alone will reveal to us that we have already broken them in letter or in spirit hundreds and thousands of times! Even if we could somehow live from now on without sinning, we have all the sins of our past to account for. The Bible states in the book of James 2:10, "For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet, offend in one point, he is guilty of all."

So you see why the Word of God in Romans 3:23 says, "For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God." Romans 6:23 tells us, "the wages of sin is death..." Revelation 20:13-15 says, "...death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to his works. And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire."

Yes, the Law quite rightly condemns us as sinners, but it also points us to the only Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ. The perfect matchless Son of God came to earth 2000 years ago, and fulfilled all the Law's requirements.

The Lord Jesus Christ, at Calvary's cross, took upon himself the penalty which is against us for our sins. Romans 5:8 says, "But God commendeth his love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us." He died, was buried and rose again on the third day, as history well testifies.

What he tells you to do is simply believe him and receive him as your Saviour. Romans 10:9-10: "That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved." Verse 13 says, "For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved."

Do call upon him now. Pray something like this, "Lord God, I know I'm a sinner, and can't save myself. I see that Jesus Christ died on the cross and gave his blood to pay my sin debt. Now, by faith, I trust him as my own Lord and Saviour. Amen."

If you came to Jesus with a repentant heart, and just now trusted him as your Saviour, nothing can ever change that! You are heaven bound, and are a child of God!