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Chapter 25

Have fullness of life restored

 

This chapter could have been called many things. All of the following are what it is about and what it could have been called.


Having the fullness of the spirit of God restored.
Committing your life to Christ.
Making a decision for God.
How to gain eternal life.
Bringing more peace to your life on earth.
Repenting and following

All these things come from the same decision.

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A summary of all that you have read in this book.

God the creator of all things, sent his son Jesus to earth to teach us how to live. He also sent him to die on the cross for our sins, fully repaying the debt that was owed by every person on earth. Jesus substituted his righteous life for ours and gives every living person the chance to substitute our imperfect life for his. If we choose to do this, we have eternal life and we begin to have fullness of life here on earth. The following four statements summarise this position of Christianity.

The authority of Jesus.

Jesus Christ is the son of God and has showed that he has authority over all things. He has authority over life and death, over nature, over sickness and evil spirits. He has the authority to forgive sin, teach absolute truth and finally, has authority over all people that have ever lived.

The death of Jesus.

The death of Jesus on the cross was and is sufficient for the sins of every person who has ever lived or will live. However, it is clear that his forgiveness is not automatically given to everybody. To gain the benefit of his death on the cross, each person individually must begin to turn away from their sinful ways and ask forgiveness for all past sin. The Holy Spirit empowers them to do this.

The resurrection of Jesus.

The resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead shows us that death and sin are defeated forever. Not being a slave to sin, and having eternal life, are now options for everybody. People who make this step of commitment to Christ will be able to face the coming judgement day with confidence, because of the eternal life gained from their decision for Christ. Jesus Christ has promised that those who confess him now, whilst they are alive here on earth, he will accept in heaven at the day of judgment.

The baptism of Jesus

Jesus himself was baptised in water and was then filled with the Holy Spirit of God. Jesus commanded all believers to do the same. Some churches have traditions that do not include baptism.

What to do next.

If you think that you understand what has been said so far, then you are ready to take the next important steps. It is suggested that you give yourself some quality time, sit down either by yourself or with a trusted Christian friend and go through all of the following. Once you have decided to do this it does not take very long.

Preparation

Please read this first. Have you considered God's law?

You might be surprised!

 

By way of preparation you will need to read through the following list to check and see that you accept all of the following statements.

  1. That the intent of God's love for you was to save you from eternal death.  "For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have everlasting life." (John 3:16 )
  2. That you are a sinner separated from God and that you want to be restored into relationship with Him.  "for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God," (rom 3:23 )
  3. That God's gift for you is eternal life.  "For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our lord." (Rom 6:23 )
  4. That to receive God's best you must be born again.   "Jesus answered and said to him, "most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God."" "Nicodemus said to him, "how can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother's womb and be born?" "Jesus answered, "most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God." "That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the spirit is spirit." (John 3:3-6 )
  5. That God anticipated your need.
    "But God demonstrates his own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us." (Rom 5:8 )
  6. That Jesus is the only way to God.
    "Jesus said to him, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me." (John 14:6 )
  7. That you will be justified before God, by virtue of the death of Jesus on the cross.
    "But if we walk in the light as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanses us from all sin." (1 john 1:7 )

If you can really accept all these things, then you can proceed with what comes next. If you cannot proceed at this stage, just persevere until you can.

Your commitment

There are two main elements in this.

1. Acknowledging your belief in Jesus and what he has done for you.

If you believe, then speak out an acknowledgment of that belief before God. I also suggest that you include in that a verbalising of the ideas found in the following verses.

"that if you confess with your mouth the lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised him from the dead, you will be saved." For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation." (Rom 10:9-10 ) "for God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life." (John 3:16 )

2. Repenting of your sin - including a confession of them.

The major sin for confession is not having previously acknowledged Jesus as you Saviour. By doing this you are in effect confessing all the sin in your life. However, if you are weighed down by particular sins, those wrong things you have done and said, then confess those too. Acknowledging them before God removes the sin and guilt from you. If you need to go to someone else to confess your harming of them in word or deed, then do that also. Keep the following verses in mind as your guarantee of forgiveness and assurance of eternal life.

"If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness." (1 john 1:9 )

""Truly, these times of ignorance God overlooked, but now commands all men everywhere to repent," because he has appointed a day on which he will judge the world in righteousness by the man whom he has ordained. He has given assurance of this to all by raising him from the dead." (Acts 17:30-31 )

The results of this commitment by you

1. You now have new life through the Spirit of God.

"But if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his spirit who dwells in you." (Rom 8:11 )

"If a son asks for bread from any father among you, will he give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will he give him a serpent instead of a fish? Or if he asks for an egg, will he offer him a scorpion? If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!"" (Luke 11:11-13 )

2. You know that your sins are forgiven

3. You have made peace with God.

4. You are a part of God's family here on earth.

5. You have the free gift of eternal life

6. You have God as your heavenly father.

7. You will come to know God's purposes for your life.

8. You will know that what ever happens, your future is safe and secure.


Afterwards

Baptism in water is a symbolic representation of the end of the old life and the beginning of the new. Try to arrange with a church of your choice to baptise you in water. Not all churches may fully believe in or fully understand water baptism, but in the Bible it is a normal and expected part fo the Christian life. Jesus commanded it for all of us. Notice the following verses.

"'and now why are you waiting? Arise and be baptised, and wash away your sins, calling on the name of the Lord.'" (acts 22:16 )

"Then Peter said to them, "repent, and let every one of you be baptised in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit." (Acts 2:38 )

Affirming what you have done.

It is important to immediately affirm what you have done. One way to do this is to read out aloud all the scriptures you have used to become a Christian. That means to use all the scriptures on these pages. It would be a good idea to do this every day for a few weeks. Notice the incredible statements that have been made in the bible about what you have just done. For example:

John 1: 12-13. "... to all who received Him, to those who believed in his name, He gave the right to become children of God children born of God." You are now a child of God.

Ephesians 2:8-9. For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith - and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God - not by works, so that no-one can boast.

2 Corinthians 5:17. Therefore,if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come.

John 10:10. I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.

One of the most important results of making this decision is that you have now received the Holy Spirit of God which is now residing with you. This means that you have been restored and that the Holy Spirit can now teach you about Jesus, the Father and Himself. What you now read in the Bible will become easier to understand, although you should not expect too much too soon. Learning about these things is a gradual process.

However, the important thing is that you have persevered long enough to make that important step. The next and final chapter will give you some guidelines about what to do next.