All Scripture references are taken from the NET2 translation unless otherwise noted.
The Question of “Who” will go to Heaven always ends with the fear of condemnation for many people because ‘the many’ also fear the ‘How of measuring up.’ However, if the truth be known the END is the reason for the fear, the fear of God’s judgment, at the least. Few people I have ever known really do not believe in God and have no fear. And the Bible is clear that because of their denial they have already been condemned. Please read John’s account of Jesus’ meeting with Nicodemus for this truth.
How Does One Become a Christian
This is an easy question to answer, but faith is the place of beginning that will continue in the life of every Believer. Faith is NOT a one time event.
“Faith is acting as if it is so in order for it to be so because with God it already is so.” This is a statement coming from Manley Beasley who was one of the foremost evangelists among Southern Baptists when he went home in July, 1990. Mr. Beasley struggled with a failing liver for a very long time and understood how to live by faith in the sufficiency of God’s amazing grace.
My own father Al Williford understood faith as well, and expressed his relationship with God in this manner, “God will heal me of this cancer one day. He will make me whole again in this life or when I enter into His presence. Either way is okay with me.”
The writer of Hebrews expresses faith in this manner, “Now faith is being sure of what we hope for, being convinced of what we do not see. For by it the people of old received God’s commendation. By faith we understand that the worlds were set in order at God’s command, so that the visible has its origin in the invisible.” Hebrews 11:1-3. Faith is not concerned with the visible gods of the world in which we live, but in the invisible God who created the world in which we live. Our eternal salvation depends not upon what we are able to do but upon that which God has done.
“But God, being rich in mercy, because of his great love with which he loved us, 5 even though we were dead in offenses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you are saved!— 6 and he raised us up together with him and seated us together with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, 7 to demonstrate in the coming ages the surpassing wealth of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. 8 For by grace you are saved through faith, and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God; 9 it is not from works, so that no one can boast. 10 For we are his creative work, having been created in Christ Jesus for good works that God prepared beforehand so we can do them.” Ephesians 2:4-10. The salvation of mankind finds its Source completely in Jesus Christ the Risen Lord and not upon what we can do ourselves for we “have been created in Christ Jesus for good works that God prepared beforehand so we can do them.” How difficult is this to understand? “For by grace you are saved through faith, and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God.”
Created for Good Works is the Demonstration of How We are Saved
How are these ‘good works’ achieved? “For by the grace given to me I say to every one of you not to think more highly of yourself than you ought to think, but to think with sober discernment, as God has distributed to each of you a measure of faith. 4 For just as in one body we have many members, and not all the members serve the same function, 5 so we who are many are one body in Christ, and individually we are members who belong to one another. 6 And we have different gifts according to the grace given to us.” Romans 12:3-6a. Not only are Believers saved by His grace, we are also empowered to His service by His grace as well. Just as we are saved by HIs grace, we are also empowered by His grace to demonstrate His grace because we are His ambassadors to accomplish His purposes. Jesus is Lord.