Would you really like to know how to get to heaven?
Years ago, railroads and airlines printed time tables. They all laid claim to the better route to your destination. They went so far as to print their line in big boxcar type, while their competitor's line was put in the smallest type.
The different denominations and churches all have their peculiar route to heaven. The various sects and isms claim to have a monopoly on the only way to a blessed eternity. Which way shall we go? Certainly all of us want to go to Heaven. Most assuredly we want to take the proper route. Which is it?
Instead of listening to this babel of voices all about us, why not listen to God? Here is what He says in the Bible. This is the inside story on God's way to heaven. It is the Gospel according to the Author:
God tells the truth about mankind:
"As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one." (Romans 3:10)
"For there is not a just man upon earth, that does good, and does not sin." (Ecclesiastes 7:20)
"For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God." (Romans 3:23)
"…For there is no man that sins not…." (1 Kings 8:46)
"All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the Lord has laid on Him [Jesus] the iniquity of us all." (Isaiah 53:6)
God says that He must punish sin:
"Behold, all souls are Mine; as the soul of the father, so also the soul of the son is Mine: the soul that sins, it shall die." (Ezekiel 18:4)
"For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord." (Romans 6:23)
God tells the inside story about His remedy for sin:
"Come now, and let us reason together, says the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool." (Isaiah 1:18)
"God commends [demonstrates] His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us." (Romans 5:8)
"Who His own self bare our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes you were healed." (l Peter 2:24)
"He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon Him; and with His stripes we are healed." (Isaiah 53:5)
"Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Spirit." (Titus 3:5)
"For by grace are you saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: not of works, lest any man should boast." (Ephesians 2:8, 9)
God wants to save you and will save you if you will follow His instructions:
"He who believes on the Son has everlasting life: and he who believes not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abides on him." (John 3:36)
"And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you shall be saved, and your household." (Acts 16:31)
"To Him give all the prophets witness, that through His name whoever believes in Him shall receive remission of sins." (Acts 10:43)
"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)
"And many other signs truly did Jesus in the presence of His disciples, which are not written in this book: but these are written, that you might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing you might have life through His name." (John 20:30, 31)
God definitely declares that there is only one way to be saved:
"Jesus said to him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man comes to the Father, but by Me." (John 14:6)
"Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is no other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved." (Acts 4:12)
"Jesus said, I am the resurrection and the life: he that believes in Me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: and whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die. Do you believe this?" (John 11:25, 26)
"For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus." (l Timothy 2:5)
Christ extends to you a personal invitation:
"All that the Father gives Me shall come to Me; and he that comes to Me I will in no wise cast out." (John 6:37)
Now it is up to you. You have the inside story. What are you going to do about it?
By Dr. J. Vernon McGee © Thru the Bible Radio Network
When you get saved, you get saved not because you deserve it, but because you simply let God save you and because you confess your own poor sinful state and your inability to save yourself.
The change in your heart, sinner, is God's part and you may be sure He will attend to that. Your part is to simply believe in Him. Whatever else is necessary in your eternal salvation, the Lord attends to when you trust in Him, or believe in Him.
Being saved, born again, is one thing; learning to live a consecrated Christian life is an entirely different thing. There is not any way you can judge whether people are born again except as you take their testimony that they have put their trust in Jesus Christ and depended on Him for salvation. Some of these people indeed may not have been taught to trust in Christ. If they were looking for "an experience," a certain kind of feeling or emotion, then they may have been misled. But if they honestly turned their hearts to Christ and depended on Him for salvation, they were saved.
Now a Christian should live a consecrated Christian life but that does not automatically follow. People who are saved will find, like Paul, "When I would do good, evil is present with me . . . . So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin" (Romans 7:21,25).
Every saved person still has the old carnal nature and often-times has the same kind of temptation he had before. Some people who have truly been born again have a desperate fight to quit tobacco, and some have never seemed to get the victory over that or other bad habits. Some Christians have never learned to trust the Lord enough to bring tithes and offerings, and some have never learned to win souls. When a baby is born, he is not born grown. Being born is one thing; growing is another thing entirely.
So the thing to do is to take for granted that people are saved when they trust Christ for salvation. Then one should set out to teach them to read the Bible daily, to learn to pray about their daily needs, to confess their sins and failures and grow in grace day by day. It is as foolish to expect young Christians to be good Christians by themselves as it is to expect a child, born in the family, to automatically be a great credit to the family without any rearing — whether they are spiritual babes or physical babes. I assure you that unless people are taught to be consecrated Christians, taught to read the Bible and pray, they are not likely to be good Christians, even if they are truly born again.