In a previous post called You Ought to Be Teachers we talked about the need for Christians to be teachers and specifically the need to be well versed in first principles. This is what the Hebrew writer had to say to the Christians reading his letter.
“For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you have need again for someone to teach you the elementary principles of the oracles of God, and you have come to need milk and not solid food.”
– Hebrews 5:12
One topic or subject that every single Christian needs to be well versed in and to have fresh in their minds is the answer to this question, how do I become a Christian?
First, we must understand the reason why anyone needs to be a Christian. See all of us have the same problem, sin. Sin simply is breaking God’s rules, His laws. In 1 John 3:4 John tells us that “Everyone who practices sin also practices lawlessness; and sin is lawlessness.” This everyone is not a small group of people but indeed is everyone. Paul in Romans 3:23 testifies that “For all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.” All of us at one point in time have broken God’s law, and that’s a big problem for us because no amount of being good or keeping God’s commandments after we broke them can ever make up for the time we didn’t keep them. So we fall under the penalty of sin, which is death (Genesis 3:3).
Once we understand this we understand why we need Jesus and need to become a Christ-follower, or a Christian. Jesus came a lived a perfect life according to all that God had commanded so that He could offer Himself as a perfect sacrifice for our sins. In 1 John 3:5 “You know that He appeared in order to take away sins; and in Him there is no sin.”
Jesus is the answer! He came that He might offer himself up as a sacrifice. No other way to put it, in Him alone there is salvation (Acts 4:12). So the very important question is, how do I get in Jesus? Let’s look at Galatians 3:26-27.
“For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. For all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ.”
The Bible is clear. To be in Jesus is to put on Christ and this happens in the act of baptism. Look at 1 Peter 3:21 “Corresponding to that baptism now saves you – not the removal of dirt from the flesh, but an appeal to God for a good conscience – through the resurrection of Jesus Christ.” It is in the act of baptism that we declare to God that I am helpless, that only you can save me from my sins! It is the ultimate act of submission and unification. For in that act you are giving yourself over the cleansing power of God and are united in the likeness of Christ death, burial, and resurrection (Romans 6:1-7).
This is the way Jesus established. In the great commission, Jesus outlines how one becomes a follower of Him. “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing hem in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” – Matthew 28:19-20
It doesn’t get any more powerful than the words of Jesus. This is His way, who I am to change it? The question then remains, have you done this? If not, why not?