Session 2 and 3 – Conversion
It’s always a good idea to look back over your conversion experience. What do you think happened when you became a follower of Jesus Christ? Are you unclear about anything? Could you possibly have misunderstood anything? Did anything happen of which you might not be aware?
Watch the “Conversion” video
God wants you to learn to fully follow Him by continuously experiencing His presence, love and power in your daily life (Matthew 18:20). Each day should be as a feast (celebration) where God is the host and you have been invited (Luke 14:15). Take time to read and think about the teachings that follow. Write any questions in your journal for discussion.
GOD’S NATURE OF LOVE:
It is important to understand that God’s nature is based upon His love for you, and everything He does emanates from this reality (John 3:16, 1 John 4:16). ‘We love because He first loved us’ (1 John 4:19). Our love is to be exclusively focused on God and what He loves (Exodus 20:3–4). Two of God’s greatest commandments are “Love the Lord your God…………. and your neighbor as yourself” (Matthew 22:37–40).
VERY IMPORTANT:God wants us to follow and obey Him because we want to. Because we love Him, not because we feel we have to or we are afraid of Him. Once this is truly in your mind and your heart, you will never be the same again.
As you live your life with Christ, never forget that God is ALWAYS loving, good, caring, compassionate, generous and faithful. He loves you deeply and has only your best at heart (Jeremiah 29:11, Psalm 36:1-12)! He wants you to live an abundant and joy filled life (John 10:10, John 15:11, Psalm 16:11)
A FEW ETERNAL TRUTHS:
Let us begin with these eternal truths: God is real. the devil is real. Heaven is Real. Hell is real. It is wise to choose God and Heaven (John 1:1-2, 1 Peter 5:8-9, Philippians 3:20-21, Matthew 10:28)!
This begins with confessing Jesus Christ as your Lord and. The heavens are rejoicing (Luke 15:10), and we are rejoicing with you! But, this is just the beginning of a life-changing journey with God. He already has an awesome plan for your life and wants to share it with you (Psalm 139, Ephesians 2:10).
Do you understand what has happened to you, and what God has planned for your life? Our hope is this study will begin to answer both questions.
LIFE’S MOST IMPORTANT QUESTIONS:
So, why did you need to be “saved” by Jesus? What did you need to be saved from? What did He do to make this possible? What happened the moment you “confessed with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believed in your heart God raised Him from the dead” (Romans 10:9-10)? What is my purpose in life? Let’s answer these questions.
HOW IT ALL BEGAN:
You and I are born sinners in need of a Savior before we accept Jesus’ invitation to turn away from our sinful ways (repent), believe and be saved (Salvation) Romans 3:23.
So, what is sin? It is anything we do that falls short of God’s perfect will and plan (1 John 1:7-9).
God Hates Sin and cannot have it in His presence. His anger towards sin is His loving and holy hostility to the evil that wants to ruin your life (Proverbs 15:9).
God first created everything to be perfect (Genesis 1:1,25). No disease or suffering or death. But mankind’s relationship with God was broken by sin and we could no longer be in His presence, either while alive on earth, or after death (this is called Hell). This all happened in the Garden of Eden when God gave Adam and Eve just one command to follow. But they decided to dis-obey (chose to sin) and at that moment their perfect relationship with God was broken and sin entered the world along with disease, destruction, violence and death. They were banished from God’s presence because He cannot live in the presence of sin (Genesis 2:15-19, Genesis 3:1-24).
We are now all born with this sin-nature inherited from Adam and the eternal separation from God that goes along with it (Psalm 51:5). We had no choice! But this was not God’s original plan and He had a solution to break the power of sin in our lives and restore our relationship with Him, both here on earth and after we die (this is called Heaven). Genesis 3:15
But that would require a “payment” for our sin to be forgiven: the death of a perfect sacrifice (Romans 6:23, Leviticus 4:31, Mark 10:45). Obviously, neither you nor I could pay this price. All seemed pretty hopeless.
SO NOW WHAT?:
But because God loves you and me unconditionally, He proposed a solution. He would provide the required perfect being to be sacrificed as full payment for your sin and mine (propitiation), thus making a way for each of us to re-establish a personal, eternal saving relationship with our God (Romans 5:8, 1 John 4:10).
God sent His Perfect Son, Jesus, to become a man. He then placed all the sins of the world (including yours and mine) onto Jesus and allowed Him to be killed (sacrificed) on a cross. The “sin price” had been paid (John 19:28-30). God then proved this had been accomplished (and the power of sin, death, the grave and Hell had been broken) by resurrecting Jesus from the dead (Matthew 28:5-6, 1 Corinthians 15:3-8) !
The doorway was now open for you and me to re-establish our eternal, life-giving personal relationship with God (Revelation 3:20,Matthew 27:51)!
THE BALL IS NOW IN YOUR COURT:
But you had a part to play before this could begin. You had to respond to God’s calling to accept Jesus’ offer of full payment for your sin and guide your life going forward as Lord (Matthew 4:17).
You must declare that Jesus is now the Lord of your life, believe that God raised him from the dead, and ask something like “God, I want to establish an eternal personal saving relationship with you, repent and be forgiven of the sin of living my life without you, and learn to cooperate with you to live the new life you have planned for me” (Romans 10:9, Ephesians 2:8-10). This required Father God to draw you, the Holy Spirit to convict you, and Jesus to save you. That is good news (John 6:44, John 16:8, Acts 4:11-12)!!
Our next class will cover what to expect as God begins His awesome work of changing you and your life.
Do make a habit of scheduling daily time for prayer, devotions, study, and response. Excellent devotions and Bible studies can be found at www. Bible.com.
Do you have a Bible Buddy that you keep in touch with on a regular basis? If so, faithfully keep in touch. If not, ask God to provide one.
Go to our next session Hearing from God after finishing session 3