In Touch Daily Devotional
by Dr. Charles Stanley
Many churchgoers will be alarmed to discover that ministry work does not earn a place in heaven. Good deeds mean nothing to God unless they are the outgrowth of a relationship with Him. Only those who have received Jesus Christ as their Savior will enter heaven, no matter how many acts of kindness or charity they have performed.
The definition of the word “believe” is what often confuses church members who lack genuine faith. They believe in God, Jesus, and heaven. But there’s a difference between giving intellectual assent to an idea and spiritually acknowledging Christ as God’s Son and one’s own personal Savior. In the Bible, every time someone truly believes in Jesus, he or she changes. It is impossible to remain the same after realizing one’s desperate need for Him.
An earnest desire for salvation begins with the recognition that we have sinned against God. We must also be aware that there is no hope of salvation apart from the Lord. Having understood these two facts, we need to trust in His sacrifice for the payment of our sin-debt. Some people use the terminology “ask Jesus to forgive your sin” or “ask Jesus into your heart.” It doesn’t matter how we describe the experience—if we repent of sin and make a decision to receive Christ, we are saved.
God promises to respond to a humble acknowledgement of His Son’s sacrifice. If you desire to be in heaven with Him for eternity, ask yourself this question: Have I been saved? If not, now is the time.
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