We are wrapping our study called “Getting To Know Jesus.” If you have any Bible questions, please let me know.
Here is the post from yesterday, which has a download of the entire workbook and previous posts.
Today’s post will discuss salvation in Christ, the church, and commitment being a disciple of Jesus.
Jesus came to save us from our sins. Sin is what separates us from God. Jesus taught that if we don’t believe in Him, we will die in our sins, John 8:23. The apostle Paul taught that the wages of sin is death, Romans 6:23. Sin is our biggest problem. Yet we don’t hear a lot about sin these days. Many preachers shy away from talking about sin. You certainly will not hear any news station talk about sin. But Jesus didn’t shy away from sin. He spoke about sin, heaven, and hell. We need to continue to listen to Jesus. We need His saving grace. This is our last lesson in this particular study. As we come to a close, we will discuss salvation in Christ. If one is going to be saved, it will only be through Jesus, John 14:6. Redemption from our sins is only found in Him, Ephesians 1:7.
Jesus desires that all men be saved. This is what God desires, 1 Timothy 2:1-4. God doesn’t want any person to perish and spend eternity separated from Him in hell, 2 Peter 3:9. No one has to go to hell. Jesus has paved the way so that we all men can be saved. But accepting the free gift of salvation from Jesus is a choice. He will not force anyone to follow Him. Following Jesus will come with a price, Luke 9:23-24. It will require commitment on our part. Many want to be saved, but don’t want to listen to what is that Jesus says. Jesus wants us to count the cost when it comes to following Him, Luke 14:26-33. One can hear the good news about Jesus and still not be a Christian, Acts 26:26-28. The apostle Paul spoke to a man named King Agrippa about Jesus. King Agrippa heard the truth concerning Jesus. It appeared he believed what he heard. Yet he didn’t take action to receive God’s saving grace. He almost became a Christian. Almost is not good enough. In Acts 24:24-26, a man named Felix and his wife Drusilla heard the truth concerning Jesus from the apostle Paul. Yet they didn’t become Christians. In fact, what they heard scared them. The truth can sometimes do that. Following the truth will come with a price. But the price is worth it. Jesus died for our sins. He loves you very much. He wants you to follow Him. This lesson will show you what you must do to be saved. Did you know a man described as the Philippian jailer asked that question to Paul in Acts 16? In Acts 16:30, the jailer asked, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” While salvation is the free gift of God (read Romans 6:23), we must understand how we access or receive this free gift. By God’s grace we can be delivered from our sins, Ephesians 2:8-10. Let’s find out how.
I. Salvation Is in Christ
Jesus taught that one must believe in Him to be saved.
- Jesus taught that He is the way to God the Father and heaven, John 14:6. This eliminates any other way. This may not be popular, but this is what Jesus taught. Jesus backed up what He taught with the miracles we have already discussed earlier.
- Jesus taught that we must believe in Him or we will die in our sins, John 8:23-24.
- The book of Acts shows us people in the first century being saved by Jesus. We see how they believed in Him and confessed that Jesus is the Son of God, Acts 8:35-37. Read Romans 10:9-10. Are you willing to do the same?
Jesus taught that one must repent to be saved.
- This is what we find in Luke 13:1-5. Repentance is not doing a 360 with your life, but rather a 180. It’s about change.
- Repentance will come with a price. Read Acts 19:17-19. What was it that some Christians in the city called Ephesus gave up?
- If you decide to follow Jesus, there will be some changes you will have to make. Are you willing to repent even if the price is big?
Jesus taught that one must be baptized to be saved.
- Jesus taught that one must be born again, John 3:3-5.
- Jesus taught that one must believe and be baptized to be saved, Mark 16:16.
- Baptism means to immerse. One must be immersed in water (baptized) to be saved.
- If one doesn’t believe, there’s no reason for them to be baptized.
- According to Jesus in Mark 16:16, does salvation occur prior or after baptism?
- Can a baby obey what Jesus taught in Mark 16:16? Explain.
- In the book of Acts, this is what we see people doing to be saved.
Read Acts 2:38. What did Peter instruct people to do?
Read Acts 8:12-13. What did people in Samaria do to be saved?
Read Acts 8:29-38. What did the eunuch believe and do to be saved?
Read Acts 22:16. Was Paul saved before or after he was baptized?
Read Acts 16:30-34. What did the Philippian jailer hear and learn prior to being baptized?
Read Colossians 2:12. According to this verse, who does the work in baptism?
Read 1 Peter 3:21. What does Peter say baptism does?
There’s nothing special about the water. One can be baptized in a river, lake, pond (if there’s enough water), a swimming pool, etc.
- What’s special is that God is working on the one who has faith in Him to be obedient.
- What’s special is that by faith one is reaching the blood of Jesus that will cleanse their sins, Ephesians 1:7.
- What’s special is that one will be united with Christ in baptism, Romans 6:4-5.
- What’s special is that one will be freed from sin, Romans 6:7.
Sometimes people have a misunderstanding about baptism.
- Some have been taught that baptism isn’t necessary. Is that true or false?
- Some have been taught that baptism is a sprinkling. Based upon what we’ve read, is that true or false?
- Some have been taught that you just say a prayer to receive Jesus. Did you see anyone do this in the passages we read, or anyone be instructed to do that?
- Some have been taught that one is saved prior to baptism. They can be baptized later to demonstrate their salvation. Is that true or false?
One can’t be taught wrong and saved right. Read Acts 19:1-5. There were some disciples who had a misunderstanding when it came to salvation. What did they do once they learned the truth?
II. When One is Saved, They Are Added to the Church Jesus Built
Jesus promised in His ministry that He would build His church, Matthew 16:18.
- According to Matthew 16:18, how many churches did Christ promise to build?
- Read Ephesians 1:22-23. Who is head of the church?
- Read Ephesians 4:4. How many bodies (or churches) are there?
- When you think church, don’t think about a building, but rather people. Read Acts 5:11. Fear came upon the church. Did fear come upon a building or people?
- When people were saved, they were added to the body of Christ, Acts 2:47. It was God who added them. All the saved are in the church that belong to Jesus.
- The church is a big deal in the eyes of God. Read Acts 20:28. What do we learn about it?
- When one is saved, they are to align themselves with a local group of Christians. Read Acts 9:19. After Paul was baptized, what did he do? Read Acts 9:26-27. When Paul was in Jerusalem, what did he do? Some want Christ but not His church. That’s not what the scriptures teach.
The church of Christ followed the teaching of the apostles, Acts 2:42.
- The church in the first century was a family. Read Acts 2:42-46; Acts 4:32-37. What do we see the Christians doing?
- The church in the first century worshiped a certain way. Read Acts 2:42; Acts 4:32-37; Acts 12:12; Acts 20:7; 2 Corinthians 8-9; and Ephesians 5:19.
- The church encouraged one another and at times corrected one another, Galatians 6:1-2; 1 Corinthians 5:1-13. Why would these things be important to do?
- The church in the first century was simple in nature and yet very important. We are to follow the pattern that we find in the New Testament.
- The church of your choice is NOT what the apostles taught. Rather, we find Christians following a simple pattern the apostles taught. God will expect you to do the same. Not every church follows what we see in the New Testament. Therefore, not every congregation is doing the will of God.
III. Are You Ready to Follow Christ?
Following Jesus will require a commitment on your part.
- At the beginning of our study, you were asked if you’ve been saved. How did you answer?
- Did your answer line up with what you have read in the Bible? If not, are you ready to be saved from your sins?
If you’ve never been saved, are you ready to become a disciple of Jesus? YES/NO
- The gospel is called GOOD NEWS for a reason. Through Jesus there’s hope, salvation, forgiveness, no condemnation, and so much more.
- If yes, then praise God! People in the first century obeyed immediately. We should as well.
- If you answered NO, there’s no pressure. Simply consider some questions:
- What may be holding you back from becoming saved?
- What questions or doubts do you have that may be holding you back?
- Are you afraid of water and that’s why you don’t want to be baptized?
- Are you afraid of what your family may think if you become a Christian?
- Do you feel like you’re too bad of a person to be saved?
- Whatever it is, you are not the first one to have those questions or concerns. Just remember, life is short. The devil doesn’t want you to become a Christian. Even if you obey, the devil will still come after you. Don’t allow him to rob you of the joy you can have in Jesus.
- Whatever you decide, be sure that you count the cost, Luke 14:24-26. Are you willing to submit to the rule and reign of Jesus? Not every disciple in the first century continued to follow Jesus, John 6:66. Some left Him. There’s a choice that must be made. What choice will you make?