The Way to Heaven

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These words of faith and inspiration are offered by Dr. Bill Bright of the Campus Crusade for Christ.

Dear Friend,

Dr. Bill BrightYes, you can know God personally, as presumptuous as this may sound. God is so eager to establish a personal, loving relationship with you that He has already made all the arrangements. He is patiently and lovingly waiting for you to respond to His invitation. You can receive forgiveness of your sins and assurance of eternal life through faith in His only Son, the Lord Jesus Christ.

The major barrier that prevents us from knowing God personally is ignorance of who God is and what He has done for us. Read on and discover for yourself the joyful reality of knowing God personally.

Bill Bright
Campus Crusade for Christ

The following four principles will help you discover how to know God personally and experience the abundant life He promised.

  • God loves you and created you to know Him personally.
    (References contained here should be read in context from the Bible whenever possible.)
    • God's Love
      "God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life."   John 3:16
    • God's Plan
      "Now this is eternal life: that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent."   John 17:3, NIV

What prevents us from knowing God personally?

  • Man is sinful and separated from God, so we cannot know Him personally or experience His love.
    • Man is Sinful
      "All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God."   Romans 3:23

      Man was created to have fellowship with God; but, because of his own stubborn self-will, he chose to go his own independent way and fellowship with God was broken. This self-will, characterized by an attitude of active rebellion or passive indifference, is an evidence of what the Bible calls sin.
    • Man Is Separated
      "The wages of sin is death."   Romans 6:23
      (spiritual separation from God) Man separated from God

      This diagram illustrates that God is holy and man is sinful. A great gulf separates the two. The arrows illustrate that man is continually trying to reach God and establish a personal relationship with Him through his own efforts, such as a good life, philosophy, or religion --- but he inevitably fails.

The third principle explains the only way to bridge this gulf...

  • Jesus Christ is God's only provision for man's sin. Through Him alone we can know God personally and experience God's love.
    • He Died in Our Place
      "God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us."   Romans 5:8
    • He Rose From the Dead
      "Christ died for our sins...He was buried...He was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures...He appeared to Peter, then to the twelve. After that He appeared to more than five hundred...."   I Corinthians 15:3-6
    • He Is the Only Way to God
      "Jesus said to him, 'I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father, but through me'."   John 14:6 God's bridge to Man through the Cross

      This diagram illustrates that God has bridged the gulf that separates us from Him by sending His Son, Jesus Christ, to die on the cross in our place to pay the penalty for our sins.

It is not enough just to know these truths...

  • We must individually receive Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord; then we can know God personally and experience His love.
    • We Must Receive Christ
      "As many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name."   John 1:12
    • We Receive Christ Through Faith
      "By grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works that no one should boast."   Ephesians 2:8,9
    • When We Receive Christ, We Experience a New Birth (Read John 3:1-8)
    • We Receive Christ By Personal Invitation
      [Christ speaking] "Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him."   Revelation 3:20

      Receiving Christ involves turning to God from self (repentance) and trusting Christ to come into our lives to forgive us of our sins and to make us what He wants us to be. Just to agree intellectually that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and that He died on the cross for our sins is not enough. Nor is it enough to have an emotional experience. We receive Jesus Christ by faith, as an act of our will.

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