Have you ever heard someone tell their testimony where their past sounds so amazing that you wonder why they ever chose to follow God?

Opening Scripture:
Romans 5:1-2  Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.

Let’s contrast “justification” with “regeneration.” Regeneration is death to life and hell to heaven.

John 3:16  For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.

This is where salvation begins, but certainly not where it ends. Paul introduces this word, “justification;” it deals with our standing before God and our answer to our guilt.

Acts 13:38-39  Therefore let it be known to you, brethren, that through this Man is preached to you the forgiveness of sins; and by Him everyone who believes is justified from all things from which you could not be justified by the law of Moses.

Hebrews 10:17  “Their sins and their lawless deeds I will remember no more.”

We should not choose to remember what God has chosen to forget.

Philippians 3:13  Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead.

He places to our account the righteousness of Christ.

Philippians 3:9  And be found in Him, not having my own righteousness, which is from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which is from God by faith.

It was all done through Christ by the fulfillment of the law on the cross.

2 Corinthians 5:21  For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.

Romans 5:1-2  Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.

vs. 1 We have peace with God. This takes care of our past. We don’t live in fear of what has happened.

vs. 2 This takes care of our future. Not only are we justified, not only has He forgive us, but then He adopts us into His family.

Regeneration changes our nature.
Sanctification changes our standing.
Adoption changes our position.

You become viewed as having been born into the Kingdom of God.

Ephesians 1:5  Having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will.

Galatians 4:4-7  But when the fullness of the time had come, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, that we might receive the adoption as sons. And because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying out, “Abba, Father!” Therefore you are no longer a slave but a son, and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ.

My fear is that too many Christians fall short of this understanding of salvation. We got in the door because someone asked us if we wanted to go to hell, and we said no. Unfortunately a lot of people stop there. They never find out the rest.

No discovery is complete until the desire to share it fills our hearts.
____________________________________

How do we share the message of salvation?

One of the best examples is Jesus’ encounter with the woman at the well. (John 4)

When you share your message:
1. Be intentional
vs. 4  But He needed to go through Samaria.

2. Be relational – the Holy Spirit puts you there
vs. 6  Now Jacob’s well was there. Jesus therefore, being wearied from His journey, sat thus by the well. It was about the sixth hour.

3. Be direct
vs. 13-14  Jesus answered and said to her, “Whoever drinks of this water will thirst again, but whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will never thirst. But the water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into everlasting life.”
– With this water, you will thirst again. You’re going to keep coming back to the well of broken relationships over and over.

Part of understanding what I need is becoming aware of what I have.
4. Reveal Jesus
vs. 26  Jesus said to her, “I who speak to you am He.”

5. Close the deal. Do you want to receive Jesus?

Your story is a powerful bridge to the gospel message Unfortunately too many Christians’ stories are lacking an understanding of the value they truly have.

The value of salvation in your life isn’t being withheld, it’s just unrealized. There’s more to it than forgiveness.

Justification is available. Adoption is His choosing of you.

Receive the Spirit of adoption. Close the deal.
____________________________________

Questions:

– What motivates non-Christians towards Christ? Heaven? Salvation? The church?
– What motivated you toward those things?
– How have those motives changed or grown as you have grown?

Advertisements