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I just prayed to become a Christian. Now what?

 

Your commitment to forsake sin and to make Jesus the only master of every aspect of your life has forever changed you before God and before man.

Before God:

1) Now you are justified before God.
To be justified is far much better than to be forgiven. To be forgiven means that God recognizes your guilt and your sin. but He willingly chose to forgive you for it. Although the Bible teaches us that God has forgiven us through His Son, Jesus (Eph 4:32,) yet the Bible teaches us that God also did something that is far much better than just forgiving us, He justified us.

To be justified before God is to be seen by God just as if you never sinned in the first place;  to be justified by God is to be acquitted by Him from any sin. The Bible teaches us that now because we are reconciled to God through the death of His son, we become “holy and blameless and above reproach before him.” Col 1:22 When the most Holy God looks at us, He doesn’t see our sins any more, He sees Jesus Christ, the righteous one Himself who became our cover before God’s holy eyes. 1 John 2:1-2  God has made Jesus, the one who knew no sin, to become sin for us “so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” 2 Cor 5:21

What a comforting and encouraging thought!  Even if we fall in sin, we can always have “confidence draw near to the throne of grace” (Heb. 4:16) because of the perfect and complete sacrifice of Christ.

The Bible tells us that justification is through faith alone Rom 3:22, by grace alone Rom. 3:24, in Christ alone. Rom 3:25  There is nothing that you could have done to be justified before God, but when you repent of your sins and commit your life to Christ, you become justified before God.

2)  Now you are a child of God.
Before we become born again, we “once were alienated and hostile in mind, doing evil deeds.” Col. 1: 21  We are “far off” from God. Eph 2:13  We were “enemies” to God. Rom. 5:10  But now “to all who did receive Him, who believed in His name, He gave the right to become children of God.” John 1:12  Now “having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise.” Eph 1:13  The Holy Spirit who came and indwelled in you when you accepted Christ, is “the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!” Rom 8:15

God Almighty, the creator of heavens and earth, is now your Father. He loves you. Now you are His child, and you need to learn to approach Him in this manner.

3) Now you have eternal life:
Eternal life is a free gift from God to man. Rom. 3:23. You receive this gift when you receive His Son. 1 John 5:11-12

John assured his readers that they can know that they have eternal life. “I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God that you may know that you have eternal life.” 1 John 5:13. Paul was sure that once he departed from his flesh, he would be with the Lord.  2 Cor. 5:8; Phil 1:23.

The reason that John, Paul and all born again Christians know that they have eternal life is not because of any merit in them, but rather because they trusted in the promises of Jesus. Jesus promised “Whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” John 3:16 He also promised “My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me. And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand. My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of My Father’s hand. I and My Father are one.” John 10:27-30

You too, can be assured that you have eternal life because of Jesus' complete sacrifice on the cross, because of His resurrection and victory over death, because of His promise to you and to all who “believe in Him,”

Before Man:

1) Now you are a new creation:
The Bible teaches us “if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.” 2 Cor 5:17 As a result of your commitment to follow Christ and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit of God in your life Eph 1:13, you will see that you will have a brand new heart and new desires. You will start hating sin and love righteousness. Rom 6:16-17

Please note that the Bible teaches us that salvation is not by works, it is only by grace (the unmerited, undeserved favor of God.) “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.” Eph 2:8-9  Yet the same Bible also teaches us that this grace “that brings salvation to all men” is also “teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age.” Titus 2:11-12

The Bible teaches us that eternal life is a free gift from God for all men “in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Rom. 3:26  Yet the same Bible also teaches us that “if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.” 2 Cor. 5:17

Whoever is born of God doesn’t live the life of sin, nor can he live the life of sin. 1 John 3:9 That means, if a few months down the road, you still have no desire to read the Bible, no desire to pray or go to church, still live the life of sin, and you are still the same person from before, then your commitment to follow Christ wasn’t genuine and the promises of God for justification and eternal life don’t apply to you.

This doesn’t mean that once you accept Christ, you will live a sinless life. 1 John 1:8 Rather it means that sin will be the exception in your life, not the rule. The more you grow in your christian walk, the more you will be transformed into the likeness of Christ. Rom 8:29; 12:1-2

2) Now you are a witness:
Once you commit your life and heart to Christ, He will give you the desire and the will to tell others about Him. After the Samaritan woman encountered Jesus, she went and told her people “Come, see a man who told me all that I ever did. Can this be the Christ?” John 4:29. After Paul encountered Jesus, the Bible say “ Immediately he proclaimed Jesus in the synagogues, saying, "He is the Son of God." Act 9:20

Being a witness is also a command from Christ. He commanded us, “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations.” Matt. 28:19  Notice how Jesus commanded us to take the initiative, “GO.” You shouldn’t passively wait for people to ask you about Jesus, rather you should be actively seeking the Holy Spirit to open doors to share with the lost the grace and love of God.

You are called to be a witness. In the court system, a witness is someone who testifies of what he has experienced. This is what we are called to do, to go and tell others how Jesus forgave us our sins, changed our hearts, and gave us hope and eternity. Mark 5:19  The good news is we have the Holy Spirit on our side who can confirm this simple message with signs, wonders, and healings. John 14:12.

3)Now you need to grow in your walk with Christ:
\Now that you have committed your life to Christ, you should grow daily in your walk with Him. There are four main ways by which you will grow in your christian walk:  Daily prayers, daily reading and studying the Bible, get plugged into a local church, and regular intentional witnessing.

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