Knowing Jesus is simple, yet very profound! I began my relationship with Him when I was a young boy. I grew up in church, in a preacher’s house, in fact. Making a public decision to follow Jesus was a celebrated event in our church. I wanted to be celebrated like everyone else I knew. I told all the church people that I had become a Christian. After all, it was the thing to do. Mom heard about my innocent, yet false proclamations of my conversion. She sat me down and bluntly said “Zachary, you are not a Christian. A Christian is someone who has asked Jesus to forgive him of his sins.” I was crushed. Not only was I not Christian, I was a sinner!
By that time in my life, I had a pretty good understanding of right and wrong. I also knew that I had never accepted the forgiveness Jesus offered me. You see, God loves all people. However, not all people love God. In fact, everyone rebels against God and follows her/his own desires. In the beginning, God created us to share a relationship with Him and to participate in His glory as His partners caring for His creation (Genesis 1 and 2)… But we rebelled – the Bible calls this rebellion sin (Romans 3:23 & 6:23. The Scripture in Isaiah 59:2, says that our sin separates us from God. We are cut-off from Him relationally and in the glory of His existence that He wants to share with us. We cannot regain what we have lost on our own efforts. We are cursed to die and spend eternity without God in Hell (Romans 6:23, Matthew 18:9).
Mom told me that I was not a Christian, but I could become one. God sent His Son, Jesus to bring us back to God. He was born on Christmas Day as all God and all man (Luke 1 & 2). He lived a life completely pleasing to His Father, without sin. While he was a good man who taught good lessons and did good things, the ultimate reason for His life was to die. In dying, Jesus took our place. Our rebellion deserved cruel punishment (Romans 6:23). Jesus took our place as He was beaten and crucified on a Roman cross (2 Corinthians 5:21 & John 18-9). Jesus’ death paid the penalty for our sin that we are supposed to pay. Three days later, Jesus came back to life (John 20)! As hard to believe as it seems, people saw him, and 10 of Jesus’ closest followers would die themselves before they denied that Jesus was alive! Jesus’ death paid the price for our sins. His resurrection gave us victory over death. We can know Jesus now and experience his full glory forever in heaven… if we turn from our rebellion and place our trust in Jesus as the One who rescues us from the consequences of our sin.
Mom said Jesus had to forgive me of my sin, and I would become a Christian and truly know Jesus. She said I had to accept His forgiveness for my sins. As a little boy, I knew I wanted to belong to Jesus. The way to do so was to humbly accept the forgiveness He offered Romans 10:9-11). I did what Mom told me to do, and Jesus did what He tells us He will do. I was forgiven and received a relationship with Him.
This is the experience of a young boy who wanted to belong to Jesus, who heard what Jesus did for him, and accepted Jesus with a full heart.
Friend, if you find yourself where I was, you too can simply know Jesus by doing what I did. Realize you cannot get to the Holy God because you have sinned. However, Jesus is offering forgiveness to you which builds a bridge to a relationship with God. You aren’t good enough to earn His gift, but He is offering it to you. Turn from your old sin and accept the gift of forgiveness in Jesus. Accept Jesus for who He is, the Son of God who loves you and wants to lead you today and into eterntiy.
If you would like to share your response to Jesus with me, please contact me through the contact tab on the home screen. To God be the glory.