What must I do to be saved?

Dr. John R Rice
Dr. John R Rice

What must I do to

be saved?

By Dr. John R. Rice, Evangelist

Here in the simplest, shortest form is put the question to which every man must learn the answer, or spend eternity lost, away from God, suffering the torments of the damned! Thank God, this question is asked and answered in the Word of God so simply that every soul can understand it. There are other questions in God’s Word which affect the soul’s welfare, and many places in the Bible is the plan of salvation made plain, but only one place is this question given word for word, and there, too, we find the answer.Philippi and at midnight they sang and prayed until God broke down all the doors and broke the stocks which held their feet, with a mighty earthquake. The poor jailer, frightened and convicted of his sins, came to these two preachers and asked this question. Read it in Acts 16:29-31:

WHAT MUST I DO?

Paul and Silas were in jail in the city of Philippi and at midnight they sang and prayed until God broke down all the doors and broke the stocks which held their feet, with a mighty earthquake. The poor jailer, frightened and convicted of his sins, came to these two preachers and asked this question. Read it in Acts 16:29-31:

“Then he called for a light and sprang in, and came trembling, and fell down before Paul and Silas, And brought them out, and said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved? And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.”

“What must I do to be saved?” “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved”! There is God’s plan of salvation, the only plan He has for every man, woman and child who was ever born into the whole world.

Sinner, there is something you must do if you would be saved. There was hope for this jailer because he saw himself a lost sinner and came trembling to inquire, “What must I do?” Reader, you are a sinner. The Word of God from beginning to end emphasizes that fact. In Isaiah 53:6 we learn:

CHRIST DIED TO SAVE SINNERS, NOT GOOD MEN

Oh, I beg you, see it today! You are a poor, lost sinner, a Hell-bound sinner! Your heart is black. You have hardened your heart, you have resisted the call of God, you have rejected Christ. However good you are in man’s sight, you are a terrible sinner, and unless you turn to Christ you must spend eternity in Hell. A SINNER! That is what you are. Admit it in your own heart, confess it to God. You are a sinner and you need saving worse than you need anything else in the world.

BELIEVE ON THE LORD JESUS CHRIST

Here is God’s simple way to be saved. You are a sinner, your heart is wrong, you cannot save yourself, you are already condemned. The thing you are to do then, to be saved, is to simply trust the Lord Jesus with that matter. When you do trust Him, then you have God’s promise, “Thou shalt be saved.”2:19). You can believe that a certain physician is a good doctor without calling him to be your doctor when you are sick. You can believe that a certain man is a good lawyer without taking him as your lawyer to defend your case. You are not just to believe the truth about Jesus; you are to believe on Him, that is, depend upon Him, risk Him, trust Him; and when you do, you are saved.

NOT SAVED BY GOOD WORKS

Of course, you do not deserve salvation. There is nothing you can do that will make you worthy of it. You cannot be saved by keeping the Ten Commandments, for the Scripture clearly shows that you have not kept them. Romans
3:20 says:9:226:23.

WHAT ABOUT REPENTANCE?

Does not the Bible say that we must repent? Yes, the Bible plainly says that “God … commandeth all men every where to repent” (Acts 17:30), and again, “Except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish” (Luke 13:3, 5). This was the preaching of John the Baptist, of Jesus, of Peter and of Paul, that men should repent. And certainly repentance is God’s plan of salvation. The trouble here, however, is that men misunderstand what repentance means, and there has grown up an idea that repentance means a period of weeping and mourning over sin, or sorrow for sins. This idea comes from the Douay Version of the Bible which instead of “repent” says “do penance.” So the place of inquiry, where people should be taught the plan of salvation from the Bible, in revival meetings, became “the mourner’s bench” and thousands of people have been taught that God would not hear their prayer nor forgive their sins until they went through a process of sorrow and mourning over their sins!7:10)–the right kind of sorrow leads to immediate repentance, but mourning is not itself repentance.

INSTANT SALVATION!

The jailer did not go through a period of mourning. He was told to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ; he did just that and was saved, and his whole family was saved the same way, immediately, the same hour of the night. Everywhere you look through the New Testament you find that people were saved all at once without any process, without any period of mourning.
In the Bible there are many cases of sinners who prayed like the thief on the cross or the publican in the temple. In fact, Romans 10:13 says:10:13, 14.

HOW TO GET THE CHANGE OF HEART

This simple way of being saved by faith seems so easy, and it is. Some sinner may say, “But I thought one must have a change of heart.” So you must, dear sinner, but that is God’s part. Jesus was talking to Nicodemus when He said, “Ye must be born again,” and in the same chapter He tells Nicodemus how to get the new birth.

HOW SHOULD I FEEL?

“ALL we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned EVERY ONE to his own way; and the Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us ALL.”

We have all gone astray! The Lord is not content for sinners to be left believing themselves good. In Romans the third chapter, how positive, how certain is the Word of God that every man, woman and child is a sinner!

“What then? are we better than they? No, in no wise: for we have before proved both Jews and Gentiles, that they are ALL under sin; As it is written, There is NONE righteous, NO, NOT ONE: There is NONE that understandeth, there is NONE that seeketh after God. They are ALL gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is NONE that doeth good, NO, NOT ONE”!–Rom. 3:9-12.

In verses 22 and 23 it is stated again that “there is no difference: for all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.” That is the reason Jesus said to Nicodemus in the third chapter of John, “Marvel not that I said unto thee, YE MUST BE BORN AGAIN.” And a little later in the same chapter, verse 18, He said that the man who has not believed in Jesus is already condemned.

Certainly these Scriptures must make it clear to every man who believes the Word of God that he is a sinner, and until he has believed in Christ and has been saved, he is a lost sinner and needs saving. The heart is wrong, and only God can make that right. Then if you want to be saved, you must admit in your own heart, “I am a sinner. I am lost and need to be saved.” No one ever was saved without coming for salvation as a sinner.

If you have settled in your heart that matter, then you are ready to learn God’s answer to your question, “What must I do to be saved?”

I do not mean that you are simply to believe that there is a God or that there is a Saviour. Devils believe that and tremble (James

“Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his own sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin.”

The same thing is told in Galatians 3:11 which says:

“But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith.”

Many, many Scriptures repeat again and again that there is no salvation through human goodness.

“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 Ghost.”–Titus 3:5.

“FOR BY GRACE ARE YE SAVED THROUGH FAITH; AND THAT NOT OF YOURSELVES; IT IS THE GIFT OF GOD: NOT OF WORKS, LEST ANY MAN SHOULD BOAST.”–Eph. 2:8, 9.

We had as well admit, then, that no man deserves saving and no man can save himself. Salvation must be free or the sinner could never get it. In fact, it takes blood to pay for sin, for the Scripture says:

“Without Shedding of Blood Is No Remission”–Hebrews

“For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly.”–Rom. 5:6.

“All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.”–Isa. 53:6.

Peter tells us that all of us are bought by the blood of Christ:

“Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot.”–1 Peter 1:18, 19.

Every lamb, bullock, heifer, goat, turtle dove and pigeon offered in the Old Testament times on the altar pictured this: that man, a guilty sinner, must have some innocent one to shed his blood to pay for one man’s sins. Jesus died for our sins, and, thank God, salvation is bought for every man in the world, if he will have it, as the free gift of God.

“For the wages of sin is death; but the GIFT of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”–Rom.

Dear sinner, remember that church membership will not save you. If you have been baptized that cannot save you. Baptism does not save, does not keep anybody saved. It is only an act of duty for those who have already found Christ as their Saviour. A moral life or lodge membership or good citizenship–these must all fail to bring salvation, for it is “not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us” (Titus 3:5). Don’t depend, then, on what you do, but on what Jesus did and promises to do for you.

Do not misunderstand me. God is anxious for you to have a penitent, broken heart over your sins. You have gone away from God. You have trampled under foot the blood of Jesus Christ, wasted years of your life which you can never live over again. You have served your father, the Devil. There is plenty for you to weep over, and I am not surprised if you feel deep shame and sorrow in your heart that you have so mistreated the God who made you and the Saviour who died for you. I am not surprised if you cannot keep back the tears! But what I want you to know is that tears or no tears, however much sorrow you may have in your heart, or not have, those things do not save you.

You ought to be sorry for your sins and ashamed of them. “Godly sorrow worketh repentance” (2 Corinthians

“Could my tears forever flow, Could my zeal no respite know, These for sin cold not atone; Thou must save, and Thou alone.”

To repent literally means to have a change of mind or spirit toward God and toward sin. It means to turn from your sins, earnestly, with all your heart, and trust in Jesus Christ to save you. You can see, then, how the man who believes in Christ repents and the man who repents believes in Christ. The jailer repented when he turned form sin to believe in the Lord Jesus Christ.

Zacchaeus, up a tree, trusted Jesus and made haste and came down, and received Him joyfully (Luke 19:6-9). Jesus said,

“This day is salvation come to this house.” When Peter told Cornelius and his assembled household that they could be saved

by believing, immediately “while Peter yet spake these words,” the Scripture says, the Holy Spirit came on them and they were happily saved (Acts 10:44-48). The thief on the cross, wicked sinner that he was, who a few minutes before had been railing at Jesus, was saved immediately when he inquired of Jesus (Luke 23:42, 43). In the first chapter of John, verses 35 to 49, we see where Andrew, Simon Peter, Philip and Nathanael were all converted, one by one, immediately by faith in Christ. There is no record of any person in Bible times who was ever told to wait, or mourn, or weep over his sins before trusting Jesus and being saved! One who believes in Christ has repented. Repentance and faith are the same thing put in different words, and neither requires a long period of time, nor a process of mourning and sorrow.

Salvation is instantaneous. All that keeps you today from being saved is the wickedness of your heart that holds on to sin and will not run to Jesus to trust in Him for salvation. I beg you, turn in shame and sorrow from your sins this minute, and trust in Christ and be saved!

CAN ONE BE SAVED WITHOUT PRAYER?

“For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

Many people believe that a sinner cannot be saved without a period of prayer, without consciously calling on God. However, the Bible does not say that a sinner must pray in order to be saved. In fact, immediately following the verse in Romans 10:13 is an explanation which shows that calling on God is an evidence of faith in the heart and that it is really faith which settles the matter. Read it again.

“For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed?”–Rom.

The Lord encourages the sinner to pray, and the Lord hears and answers the sinner’s prayer, if that sinner trusts in Jesus Christ for salvation when he prays. He heard the prayer of the thief on the cross, of the publican in the temple, of blind Bartimaeus. But the Scripture says, “How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed?” Certainly every one who is to be saved must believe. Prayer is evidence of faith. No matter how long one prays, if he does not trust in Christ, he can never be saved. If he trusts in Christ without conscious prayer, then he is saved already. There is just one plan of salvation and just one step a sinner must take to secure it. That step is to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ!

Same way we preachers have left the impression on this poor world of sinners that God is hardhearted and that it takes many tears and loud cries and long periods of sorrow before He will hear and save the sinner. We have left the impression that God does not care whether sinners are saved or not, and that sinners must some way touch the heart of God and get Him ready to forgive. What a slander on a good and holy God who “so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that WHOSOEVER BELIEVETH in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Man’s sins are already paid for, God’s wrath is already turned away from any sinner who wants to be saved. Both the Father and the Son are a million times more anxious to save every sinner than the sinner can be to get saved! Thank God, I do not have to beg God to forgive my sins. He will do it the minute I am willing to trust it with Him.

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”–John 3:16.

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.

Some do not want to claim Christ as Saviour until they have the mysterious feeling that they want. Do not let the Devil deceive you here. I believe in heartfelt religion, and thank God for the joy which He gives to me day by day.
Some people have an idea that the change of heart is a matter of feeling. But the Bible nowhere tells how one must feel before he is saved, nor does it anywhere say how you feel after you are saved. In fact, people do not feel the same. Feeling varies with the person saved.

WHAT ABOUT PUBLIC CONFESSION?

Every person who is saved ought to publicly confess Christ. Matthew 10:32 and Romans 10:9 plainly teach that God will claim as His child any of us who will claim Christ as our Saviour, but we simply confess with the mouth what we have already trusted in our hearts. Concerning that very matter Romans 10:10 says:1:12 to as many as receive Jesus. But you could not come to Christ without trusting Him, and John 1:12 shows that receiving Jesus is the same as believing on His name.10:43.13:39.16:30, 31.5:31). He is the Great Physician and will heal your soul instantly if you will trust Him. As you would trust a doctor, submit to his treatment, depend on him for results, so trust Jesus today about your soul. To be sure, human doctors fail many times. Their results at best are gradual, and so no doctor is a perfect picture of Jesus. The doctor can work no miracles, but Jesus can, and the change that is needed in that poor, wicked heart, He will make immediately, instantly, without any further effort on your part, when you trust Him!

JESUS IS OUR LAWYER

If you had committed a crime and were thrown in jail, probably the first thing you would do would be to send for some lawyer in whom you had confidence and trust him with the entire matter of your defense. In God’s sight you are a criminal, condemned already and with the wrath of God upon you day by day. But God has provided somebody to take the part of us poor sinners, criminals before the bar of God’s justice, and Jesus is that lawyer, for the Scripture says:

A young man and young woman stand together, side by side, before the preacher. The preacher says, “You will join right hands.” Then to the young man he says, “Do you take this young woman to be your lawfully wedded wife, to love her and cherish her until death do you part?” He answers, “I do.” To the young woman the preacher says: “Do you take this man to be your lawfully wedded husband until death do you part?” She answers, “I do.” Then the preacher says: “I pronounce you man and wife,” and they are married in the sight of God and man.

MAKE IT SURE–CLAIM HIM TODAY!

The way is plain and you can be saved this moment if you will.10:10).

Some cry when they are saved, some laugh, and a few shout aloud the praises of God. One is no more saved than the other.

What you want, dear sinner, is salvation, and you should be satisfied to feel any way that will please the Lord, just so He forgives your sins.

Be sure you notice another fact, too, and that is that you cannot feel right until you get right. Rejoicing does not come before you trust the Lord. One does not feel the result of medicine before he takes it. The Children of Israel in the wilderness, bitten by fiery serpents and at the point of death, were not healed and did not feel healed until they looked to the brass serpent on the pole (Num. 21:6-9). People are not saved by feeling; they are saved by trusting in Christ. The prodigal son, away from home in the hog pen, decided to arise and go to his father, but he did not feel good. He was without shoes, clothed in rags, without the ring of sonship, without any evidence of his father’s forgiveness, perishing with hunger! Yet he arose and came to his father, not by feeling, but by faith in his father. Thank God, his father received him, like God receives every sinner who will come. And when the prodigal boy sat down at his father’s table, with shoes of the gospel of peace, clothed in the garments of righteousness of Christ, with the ring of sonship on his finger, eating the fatted calf at the right hand of the father, happy in his love, then he has plenty of feeling. Feeling comes after salvation. Leave the feeling with the Lord and come to the Saviour by faith today.

After you are saved, you will get peace and joy out of following the Lord in baptism, reading His Word, winning souls and otherwise pleasing Him. You need to go to the Lord again and again day by day for the joy of a Christian life. But thank God that salvation is settled once and for all when you simply depend upon Christ as your Saviour.

“For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.”

To claim Christ as your Saviour simply proves that you trust Him in the heart. Likewise with all other promises in the Bible about how to be saved. “Him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out,” says John 6:37; and salvation is promised in John

Dear sinner, do not make this a difficult matter. There is one simple step between you and Jesus. When you trust Him, everything else is settled, and you have repented, you have come to Christ, you have received Him, you have done everything necessary to be saved. Take the answer in Acts 16:31 at face value: “BELIEVE ON THE LORD JESUS CHRIST, AND THOU SHALT BE SAVED”! In dozens of Scriptures all through the Bible salvation is promised to those that believe. Read carefully the following Scriptures and see that again and again, many, many times, God has promised all any poor sinner would ever need when he believes on the Lord Jesus Christ.

“But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that BELIEVE on his name.”–John 1:12.

“And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up: That whosoever BELIEVETH in him should not perish, but have eternal life. For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever BELIEVETH in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”–John 3:14-16.

“He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that BELIEVETH not is condemned already, because he hath not BELIEVED in the name of the only begotten Son of God.”–John 3:18.

“He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that BELIEVETH not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.”–John 3:36.

“Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and BELIEVETH on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.”–John 5:24.

“And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and BELIEVETH on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day.”–John 6:40.

“Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that BELIEVETH on me hath everlasting life.”–John 6:47.

“To him give all the prophets witness, that through his name whosoever BELIEVETH in him shall receive remission of sins.”–Acts

“And by him all that BELIEVE are justified from all things, from which ye could not be justified by the law of Moses.”–Acts

Read again the Scripture we started with:

“What must I do to be saved?”

“BELIEVE on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved.”–Acts

Trust Jesus, the Great Physician

If you were sick and about to die, and there was some good doctor whom you could trust, would you not risk him to take your case, give you the necessary treatment, and with God’s help get you well? Then just like that, trust in Christ, depend on Him for your salvation, and turn it over to Him today. With the same kind of faith that will call in a doctor and risk him for your body, you can call in the Lord Jesus Christ and risk Him to forgive your sins and save your poor lost soul! He said, “They that are whole need not a physician, but they that are sick” (Luke

“If any man sin, we have an advocate [or lawyer] with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous: And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for our’s only, but also for the sins of the whole world.”–1 John 2:1, 2.

Jesus will not only be your lawyer to defend your case; He has already paid the penalty and you may safely trust Him to have you immediately pardoned and justified! Why not simply risk Jesus as you would risk a good lawyer? Jesus is better than any lawyer, of course, and you do not have to pay Him a fee, and He never fails.

A WEDDING

What a simple picture of salvation! Jesus is the bridegroom and we who trust Him are to be His bride. Already Jesus has loved you and has long urged you to accept His love. Jesus invites you to accept His love. Jesus invites you to believe in Him right now and be saved and so become a part of His bride. Will you not right now with the same simple faith of that young woman who takes a husband, accept Jesus as your Saviour and say to Him, “I do.”?

Surely it has become plain, dear lost sinner, that it is your own fault if you are lost! Do you hate Jesus Christ? Will you hold on to your sin and go to Hell for your stubbornness? Nothing in the world could show your wickedness like postponing this matter. You can be saved right now, this minute. I beg you, do it now. Turn your whole heart from sin to trust in Christ. Choose for Heaven against Hell, choose for Christ against Satan. Do not let Satan deceive you any longer. If you delay, it may result in a hardened heart, a wasted life and a tortured soul in Hell! And if you are not saved, when God has made the way so plain and paid the price for your sins, then you have no one to blame but yourself. Will you trust Jesus Christ today and be saved?

“Boast not thyself of tomorrow; for thou knowest not what a day may bring forth.”–Proverb 27:1.

“Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.”–2 Corinthians 6:2.

“Today if ye will hear his voice, Harden not your hearts.”–Heb. 3:7, 8.

God has given you this heartbeat, this breath, this moment in order to trust Christ, but there is no promise of another. I beg you do it right now, and then claim Him as your Saviour.

One who trusts Jesus Christ as personal Saviour should publicly claim Him before men. “For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation” (Romans

After trusting Jesus Christ you should join a church and be baptized. I hope you will find a good Bible-believing church and attend faithfully.

This message by Dr. John R. Rice has circled the globe in multi-millions of copies and in many languages. I had the honor of working with Dr. Rice the last eight years of his life. When he asked me to join him in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, he suggested, among the duties I would undertake, that I write promotional articles for his tract, “What Must I Do to be Saved?” When I asked if there were testimonies available that I might read from those who had been saved through this powerful message, his faithful assistant, Miss Viola Walden, showed me several file cabinets stacked side-by-side filled with thousands of such testimonies. More arrived each day that I was there—some ten years. –Ron English

Jimmy Stewart’s,“Beau”

images-jimmy-stewart-stamp1Sometimes you think of posting something that has nothing to do with the theme of your blog. This may be one of those times. I am a long-time fan of Jimmy Stewart, the actor. I thought of him as a decent, human being that loved his country and understood his fellowman. He was a delightful actor. This posting has nothing to do with Mr. Stewart’s religious leanings. Frankly, I don’t know about them. I never met the man, yet I always felt I had. Perhaps you enjoyed his work, too. If so, you will appreciate this entry. I did and I do. Each time I hit the play button I have to listen to the entire reading. It’s compelling and at the end, i’m not sure, but it just might be a good post for this blog after all. See what you think.

I am grateful to the March 8, 2009, issue of SE Edition of American Profile for reminding me of the poem written by James Stewart, the movie actor. Mr. Stewart read this poem on the Johnny Carson TV show. I learned that the clip of that reading was widely distributed on the Internet. I found one and here it is:

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James Ehrlich

Pastor James Ehrilich

Rev. James Ehrlich is pastor of Bethel Baptist Church, Norman, Oklahoma

Brother James has been blessed to see his congregation grow in numbers to three adult services each Lord’s day plus a service for College and Career young people.  Three of these services the pastor personally speaks.  The other has one of his earlier morning sermons recorded on DVD and played for the adults assembled in a service located off campus.  Rev. Ehrlich is a popular minister that cares for his flock.  The church is blessed to have this spiritual man of God watching for their spiritual growth and always sensitive for souls.   He’s a man of faith, prayer and vision.  I thought you should hear one of his sermons.  I am pleased to call him Pastor.

Isaiah Chapters 59-61

Isaiah 59-61 (King James Version)

Isaiah 59

1Behold, the LORD’s hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; neither his ear heavy, that it cannot hear:

2But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear.

3For your hands are defiled with blood, and your fingers with iniquity; your lips have spoken lies, your tongue hath muttered perverseness.

4None calleth for justice, nor any pleadeth for truth: they trust in vanity, and speak lies; they conceive mischief, and bring forth iniquity.

5They hatch cockatrice’ eggs, and weave the spider’s web: he that eateth of their eggs dieth, and that which is crushed breaketh out into a viper.

6Their webs shall not become garments, neither shall they cover themselves with their works: their works are works of iniquity, and the act of violence is in their hands.

7Their feet run to evil, and they make haste to shed innocent blood: their thoughts are thoughts of iniquity; wasting and destruction are in their paths.

8The way of peace they know not; and there is no judgment in their goings: they have made them crooked paths: whosoever goeth therein shall not know peace.

9Therefore is judgment far from us, neither doth justice overtake us: we wait for light, but behold obscurity; for brightness, but we walk in darkness.

10We grope for the wall like the blind, and we grope as if we had no eyes: we stumble at noon day as in the night; we are in desolate places as dead men.

11We roar all like bears, and mourn sore like doves: we look for judgment, but there is none; for salvation, but it is far off from us.

12For our transgressions are multiplied before thee, and our sins testify against us: for our transgressions are with us; and as for our iniquities, we know them;

13In transgressing and lying against the LORD, and departing away from our God, speaking oppression and revolt, conceiving and uttering from the heart words of falsehood.

14And judgment is turned away backward, and justice standeth afar off: for truth is fallen in the street, and equity cannot enter.

15Yea, truth faileth; and he that departeth from evil maketh himself a prey: and the LORD saw it, and it displeased him that there was no judgment.

16And he saw that there was no man, and wondered that there was no intercessor: therefore his arm brought salvation unto him; and his righteousness, it sustained him.

17For he put on righteousness as a breastplate, and an helmet of salvation upon his head; and he put on the garments of vengeance for clothing, and was clad with zeal as a cloak.

18According to their deeds, accordingly he will repay, fury to his adversaries, recompence to his enemies; to the islands he will repay recompence.

19So shall they fear the name of the LORD from the west, and his glory from the rising of the sun. When the enemy shall come in like a flood, the Spirit of the LORD shall lift up a standard against him.

20And the Redeemer shall come to Zion, and unto them that turn from transgression in Jacob, saith the LORD.

21As for me, this is my covenant with them, saith the LORD; My spirit that is upon thee, and my words which I have put in thy mouth, shall not depart out of thy mouth, nor out of the mouth of thy seed, nor out of the mouth of thy seed’s seed, saith the LORD, from henceforth and for ever.

Isaiah 60

1Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the LORD is risen upon thee.

2For, behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people: but the LORD shall arise upon thee, and his glory shall be seen upon thee.

3And the Gentiles shall come to thy light, and kings to the brightness of thy rising.

4Lift up thine eyes round about, and see: all they gather themselves together, they come to thee: thy sons shall come from far, and thy daughters shall be nursed at thy side.

5Then thou shalt see, and flow together, and thine heart shall fear, and be enlarged; because the abundance of the sea shall be converted unto thee, the forces of the Gentiles shall come unto thee.

6The multitude of camels shall cover thee, the dromedaries of Midian and Ephah; all they from Sheba shall come: they shall bring gold and incense; and they shall shew forth the praises of the LORD.

7All the flocks of Kedar shall be gathered together unto thee, the rams of Nebaioth shall minister unto thee: they shall come up with acceptance on mine altar, and I will glorify the house of my glory.

8Who are these that fly as a cloud, and as the doves to their windows?

9Surely the isles shall wait for me, and the ships of Tarshish first, to bring thy sons from far, their silver and their gold with them, unto the name of the LORD thy God, and to the Holy One of Israel, because he hath glorified thee.

10And the sons of strangers shall build up thy walls, and their kings shall minister unto thee: for in my wrath I smote thee, but in my favour have I had mercy on thee.

11Therefore thy gates shall be open continually; they shall not be shut day nor night; that men may bring unto thee the forces of the Gentiles, and that their kings may be brought.

12For the nation and kingdom that will not serve thee shall perish; yea, those nations shall be utterly wasted.

13The glory of Lebanon shall come unto thee, the fir tree, the pine tree, and the box together, to beautify the place of my sanctuary; and I will make the place of my feet glorious.

14The sons also of them that afflicted thee shall come bending unto thee; and all they that despised thee shall bow themselves down at the soles of thy feet; and they shall call thee; The city of the LORD, The Zion of the Holy One of Israel.

15Whereas thou has been forsaken and hated, so that no man went through thee, I will make thee an eternal excellency, a joy of many generations.

16Thou shalt also suck the milk of the Gentiles, and shalt suck the breast of kings: and thou shalt know that I the LORD am thy Saviour and thy Redeemer, the mighty One of Jacob.

17For brass I will bring gold, and for iron I will bring silver, and for wood brass, and for stones iron: I will also make thy officers peace, and thine exactors righteousness.

18Violence shall no more be heard in thy land, wasting nor destruction within thy borders; but thou shalt call thy walls Salvation, and thy gates Praise.

19The sun shall be no more thy light by day; neither for brightness shall the moon give light unto thee: but the LORD shall be unto thee an everlasting light, and thy God thy glory.

20Thy sun shall no more go down; neither shall thy moon withdraw itself: for the LORD shall be thine everlasting light, and the days of thy mourning shall be ended.

21Thy people also shall be all righteous: they shall inherit the land for ever, the branch of my planting, the work of my hands, that I may be glorified.

22A little one shall become a thousand, and a small one a strong nation: I the LORD will hasten it in his time.

Isaiah 61

1The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me; because the LORD hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound;

2To proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all that mourn;

3To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that he might be glorified.

4And they shall build the old wastes, they shall raise up the former desolations, and they shall repair the waste cities, the desolations of many generations.

5And strangers shall stand and feed your flocks, and the sons of the alien shall be your plowmen and your vinedressers.

6But ye shall be named the Priests of the LORD: men shall call you the Ministers of our God: ye shall eat the riches of the Gentiles, and in their glory shall ye boast yourselves.

7For your shame ye shall have double; and for confusion they shall rejoice in their portion: therefore in their land they shall possess the double: everlasting joy shall be unto them.

8For I the LORD love judgment, I hate robbery for burnt offering; and I will direct their work in truth, and I will make an everlasting covenant with them.

9And their seed shall be known among the Gentiles, and their offspring among the people: all that see them shall acknowledge them, that they are the seed which the LORD hath blessed.

10I will greatly rejoice in the LORD, my soul shall be joyful in my God; for he hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, he hath covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decketh himself with ornaments, and as a bride adorneth herself with her jewels.

11For as the earth bringeth forth her bud, and as the garden causeth the things that are sown in it to spring forth; so the Lord GOD will cause righteousness and praise to spring forth before all the nations.

How to Lead Someone to Christ

YOU CAN WIN SOULS

By Eddie Lawrence, Sermon Seedbed

Dr. Eddie Lawrence
Dr. Eddie Lawrence

How it comes about?

* Burdens-There are times when God burdens us to share the Gospel with a particular person. In such cases we should pray and seek the opportunity.

* Promptings-There are times when you may be prompted on the spot to share the Gospel with a person. It may be a total stranger.

* Inquirers-There may be times when someone approaches you with questions about the Christian life.

* Desire-There seems to be times when we are motivated to witness. We make opportunities.


The Approach

*You should be gentle-You will never force anyone into the kingdom. You may force someone into saying they are in the kingdom.

* You should be sincere-you are not witnessing to get another notch in your Bible. You are witnessing to see lives changed from darkness to light.

*You should be persuasive-This is not being pushy. This means that you do not give people an out. They must choose for or against Christ.

*You should be compassionate-You were once also lost.

Phases of approach-

1. Initial contact and conversation

2. Transitional phase-The point where you turn from what you are talking about to the spiritual arena. Think of this as a bridge. You are to build a bridge from where the conversation is to where you want it to be.

3. The Question

The question is the point at which you directly confront the individual with the subject of spiritual things. Some examples are:

*Do you ever do much thinking about spiritual things?

*What do you think about God?

*If you were to die tonight, would you go to heaven? Why?

*Do you know for certain that you have eternal life and that you will go to heaven when you die?

* Have you ever thought about where a man goes after he dies?

*Are you prepared to die?

*How do you think a man can prepare to die?

4. The Request

*May I take just a few minutes and share with you how you can be sure to go to heaven when you die?

*May I take a few moments and share with you some spiritual truth that has changed my life?

*You know, there was a time in my life when I was filled with uncertainty about these things we’re discussing but then something happened that has changed my life, may I share it with you?

5. The Roman Road

A. Man has a sin problem

Romans 3:23

B. Sin Carries a penalty

Romans 6:23

C. God has provided a way to pay your penalty

Romans 5:8

Romans 4:25

D. You must personally respond to God’s provision

Romans 10:9-10

6. The Invitation

*Are you ready right now to give your life to Jesus Christ?

*I want to pray for you. (As you are praying stop and ask the person if they are willing to give their life to Christ to reach out and take your hand. If they do, then lead them in a simple prayer of faith and trust that contains the truths of the Gospel.)

7. Follow up

*If they prayed to receive Christ share with them the importance of baptism and Church membership, Daily Bible reading, prayer, and witnessing.

*If they did not pray to receive Christ, assure them of your love and continued prayer. Leave the door open for future contact. You have planted seed that may come to harvest later.

Eddie Lawrence, Minister for 25 years

http://sermonseedbed.com/?p=640

Gone Fishing


Dr. C. Sumner Wemp
Dr. C. Sumner Wemp

Gone Fishing

Get Yours Free
Get Yours Free

Dr. C. Sumner Wemp

This is what it is all about. Recently I went to a large home improvement store. Just inside were three clerks. I asked directions to what I needed. They told me and I said, “Let me give you some good directions,” and gave each one “Your Ticket to Heaven.”

Two of them took it and turned to their work. The third lady thanked me and said, “I need that.” I hear this often. I said, “We all do. Just read it and from your heart do what it says.” She said, “I will do that tonight.” She was a black lady from Ethiopia.

A couple of days later I went back and found this lady. She saw me, her face beamed and she blurted out, “I did it, I read it and prayed the prayer.” After talking to her a few minutes, it was obvious she understood it and was really saved. Following this up, I have gone back several times and she is going on with the Lord.

Last week I went back to get some hardware I needed. She was off that day. Two ladies helped me get what I wanted. I gave each one “Your Ticket to Heaven.” One assured me she was already saved. The other said, “I will read it.” Just about 15 feet in front of us was a sharply dressed business man with about 9 employees around him. The Christian lady said, “There is the ‘big boss’, give him a ‘Ticket’.”

Gladly, I went to the big boss, Frank, and said, “That lady said I should give you a ‘Ticket’.” He took it, read the title out loud, “Your ticket to Heaven,” and said, “Wow. I will read that.” The other employees began sticking their hands out wanting one. By now I was in hog heaven.

The next week I went back to see if I could talk to Frank. I found he was not the big boss of that store, but the Vice President of the whole company of several hundred stores. God did all of that and a man, most of us would never get such a chance to witness to, got a chance now to go to Heaven. That is what keeps me fired up. You never know to whom you might be giving a chance to go to Heaven when you graciously hand someone a tract. We could change the world for God if we would just do it!

Join the 10,000 who get our brief encouraging and teaching Emails MWF. Write me at sumner@sumnerwemp.com. See our web site www.sumnerwemp.com for great motivation, encouragement and much more, then enter our free book drawing. Get our newest tract, “Your Ticket to Heaven.” Call 1-877-827-2871 to order them. ABC Sumner

This article first published in The Biblical Evangelist.  Used by permission.

Gone Fishing
Dr. C. Sumner Wemp

“I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase”

– I Corinthians 3:6

A great truth. Every person you and I lead to Christ, you know someone else has planted seed and prayed fervently for them. You know better than take any credit for it or God might just let you try it all by yourself and you would fall on your face.

Call Dad. One day I led a dear Christian lady’s husband to Christ in their home. My, the tears of joy flowed as they rejoiced and wept together. Then he said, “Preacher would you wait and let me call my Dad in Kentucky? He will be thrilled to death.” He called and told his father he had just gotten saved and handed me the phone. The father was weeping and thanked me over and over for leading him to Christ. He had prayed for his son for years. God did that.

Unknown soldier. One day I handed a lady a gospel tract and asked her to read it when she had time. She replied, “That’s funny, Someone else gave me one of those a week ago.”

“That’s wonderful” I said, “did you read it?”

“Yes,” she replied, “and that is all I have been able to think of all week.”

God had her heart so ready. Anyone could have led her to Christ. I told her how God loved her and the Lord Jesus suffered and died for her sins, paid her debt in full and rose again. By now tears were flowing. She gladly bowed her head and prayed out loud to receive the Lord Jesus as her personal Savior. She confessed Christ publicly and has gone on with the Lord. The fellow who gave her the first tract, won’t know it until he gets to Heaven how God used his tract to get this dear lady to go to Heaven.

This just hit me today. I have given out thousands of tracts. There must be any number of people where someone like you came along and led them to Christ and we will shout together when we get to Heaven and find out about it.
Oh, dear people, there are millions of others where someone planted and is now praying that someone will lead their loved one to Christ. We have just got to get “the gospel to every creature” and find the ones where someone else planted and watered and see God give the increase. That is reality living.

All Because of Calvary, C. Sumner Wemp

Join the 10000 others who get our encouraging and teaching Emails MWF. Write me at sumner@sumnerwemp.com. See our website www.sumnerwemp.com for great quotes, illustrations and much more, then enter our free book drawing.

First published in The Biblical Evangelist.  Used by permission.