The media is mostly full of bad news and over the past few months, the outlook has been bleak with 24/7 coverage of the COVID19 pandemic. As the virus continued to spread, death tolls soared in various countries and fear gripped the hearts of many. It must have been terrible for those who tested positive with no immediate cure in sight. Many have survived, but sadly some have severe consequences which will possibly disrupt the rest of their lives. We hope there will be good news soon in regards to a cure or successful vaccine.
In the spiritual dimension, the diagnosis is also bleak. The plague of the human race is sin and no matter what we try to do, it clings to us like death. We are born with a sinful nature and before we point the finger at murderers, thieves and other criminals, we should assess our own shortcomings honestly and objectively. God's standard is found in the Ten Commandments and no one has ever kept them in their entirety except for One, God's Son, Jesus Christ.
The Bible says: For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. Romans 3:23
Sin stands between us and God because of His holiness. However, because He is love in essence, He had a plan to redeem us back to Himself and this good news is known as the Gospel.
Most of us are familiar with the story of Christmas when God became incarnate and "tabernacled among us" (from σκηνόω) John 1:14. The purpose of His coming, which was foretold centuries previously and which divided time, was to atone for our sins on the cross. He defeated death and rose from the dead.
The Apostle Paul, the great herald of the Gospel, wrote to the Corinthian believers:
For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures... 1 Corinthians 15: 3-4.
How To Become A Christian
The Book of Acts describes the birth and development of the Christian church, which witnessed exponential growth at the beginning and has continued to flourish at various times over the centuries. Paul's message was essentially the same to his audiences; the forgiveness of sins was possible through repentance and faith in the Living Christ.
To the Antiochians of Pisidia:
Let it be known to you therefore, brothers, that through this man forgiveness of sins is proclaimed to you, and by him everyone who believes is freed from everything from which you could not be freed by the law of Moses. Acts 13: 38-39
To the Philippian Jailer:
Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved. Acts 16:31
To the Athenians:
The times of ignorance God overlooked, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent, because he has fixed a day on which he will judge the world in righteousness by a man whom he has appointed; and of this he has given assurance to all by raising him from the dead. Acts 17: 30-31
When we go back to the Bible and read the original story, it is clear that entrance to the Christian church, the Body, was through repentance and faith in the risen Christ. This confession was expressed publicly through believer's baptism. Infant baptism was not practised in Bible times. The first mention of infant baptism occurs in the 4th century under Constantine and it became universally decreed in Christendom from the 5th century. It is erroneous to propagate infant baptism as the means of remission of sins and entrance to the Christian Church. The truth of baptism is expounded in Romans 6: 1-11 and should never be confused with the remission of sins.
Jesus said: Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life. He does not come into judgment, but has passed from death to life. John 5:24
Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life; whoever does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God remains on him. John 3:36
Invitation To All
The invitation to become a Christian is extended to all. Only Christ gives true peace and wholeness. Perhaps you are wondering if there is more to life and what the purpose of your existence is. Death is not the end, in fact it is only the beginning. Now is the time to prepare for our eternal existence through a relationship with God in Christ. One day He will be our judge and if He says, "Depart from Me, I never knew You", we will be eternally lost.
Come before Christ as you are in prayer and in your own words, repent of your sins and ask for forgiveness. He will save you and impart His Spirit into your believing heart. Get a New Testament and start reading His words. May God bless you!
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