Basic Bible Teachings
Lesson 06: How do we become one of God’s people?
by Bob Burridge ©2011
How do we become one of God’s people?
So far in our basic studies we have seen that the Bible tells us what God wants us to know. It tells us about God as the Creator of everything, and as the Ruler over all that he made. We learn from the Bible that we do wrong things because Adam’s sin makes us selfish, greedy, and rude. Only God can change our sinful hearts. This is why Jesus came. He came as our Savior to pay for the guilt of his people’s sins, and to credit them with his own goodness.
Now the question is: how do we become one of God’s people?
1) Our sin makes it so that we can not do anything good.
We can not trust in or really understand God’s promises.
In his letter to the Romans (3:10-12) the Apostle Paul quoted from the Old Testament. He said, “As it is written: ‘There is none righteous, no, not one; There is none who understands; There is none who seeks after God. They have all turned aside; They have together become unprofitable; There is none who does good, no, not one.’ ”
In verse 23 of that same chapter it says, “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.”
2) God rescues some by grace.
Grace is when God loves us when we do not deserve it ourselves.
In Paul’s letter to the Ephesians (2:8-9) he said, “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.”
This means that it is God’s choice, not our own goodness, that makes us his children forever. When we trust in what Jesus did, we know that God has changed us. He made us able to do what we could never do on our own.
3) Faith is the trust God puts into our hearts by his grace.
When we have “faith” it means that we are confident that Jesus paid for our sins, and gives us his goodness. It means that we should not trust in anything we do to become God’s children. Instead we trust completely in what God did, and we trust in that alone.
You become sorry for your sins when you God shows you that you are a lost sinner. When you know that Jesus came to rescue you, you thank God for his grace that makes you part of his family. This makes you want to worship God, and to do what God says is right. You want to be a good obedient child of God because you want to show how much you love God for loving you.
4) When we trust in what Jesus did for us, God tells us that we are innocent of our sins.
We are not innocent because we did good things, or because we deserve his love. We are innocent because Jesus paid for the guilt of his people in their place. When God changes us by his grace, we discover that Jesus paid for our sins when he died on the Cross. What God does never fails. We can know that we are his people when we see that faith at work in our hearts, and when we are truly sorry that our sins have offended the God who loved us so much.
The Bible assures us of this in many places. In Romans 6:23 it says, “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
Our salvation is a wonderful gift of grace. We cannot stop being loved by God once we know that he rescued us. We are not God’s children because we deserve it. We are his children because Jesus earned that for us when he lived and died in our place.
(Bible verses are quoted from the New King James Version of the Bible)
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