/The Gospel in Ten Minutes/
Greetings! I am very thankful that you’re taking the time to listen to this short ten minute audio presentation of the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Let me tell you a little about our church. The people at Heritage Baptist Church believe that Jesus Christ came into the world in order that people might have life – that they might have it abundantly and eternally. And yet we have found that there are millions of people in this country - people who attend church regularly, try to live a good life, and follow the teachings of Christ, - and yet somehow the church has failed to communicate to them how they can know for sure that they have eternal life and are going to go to heaven.
How about you? Have you come to the place in your spiritual life where you know for certain that if you were to die today you would go to Heaven, or is that something you would say you’re still working on? Most people end up answering this question by saying that they are still working on it. Some believe that we just cannot be arrogant enough to think that we would ever know for sure. Still others believe that they will cast themselves upon the mercy of God when the time comes. But, did you know that the Bible clearly states that it was written so that we would know that we have eternal life? We live in a “hope-so/maybe-so” world. Yet the Bible, God’s Word, teaches that we can know beyond a shadow of a doubt that we’ll be in Heaven when we die.
Suppose you were to die today and stand before God and He were to say to you, ‘Why should I let you into My Heaven?’ what would you say? That’s an interesting question, isn’t it? What answer would give God? Perhaps you would say that you tried your best to be kind and loving. Perhaps you worked hard to keep some code of ethics or even obey the Ten Commandments. Perhaps you would tell God that you are better than most or that your good works outweighed you bad deeds in life. These are all very common answers. But what is important is what you would say. Think about how you will answer that question.
The word gospel means good news. I am sharing the good news of Jesus Christ with you. As a matter fact, our understanding of the gospel begins with very good news. The Bible says that the gift of God is eternal life (Ro 6.23). That means that Heaven is a free gift. It cannot be earned by anyone. No one deserves it. This is the essence of God’s amazing grace. It is by that grace that you are saved through faith. It is not something you work up yourself; it is the gift of God, not of works, otherwise people would have room to boast (Eph 2.8-9).
Think about that! Anything that is considered a gift must be free and is neither earned nor deserved. This can be seen more clearly when we understand what the Bible says about man.
Here, the news turns a bit grim for all of us. The Bible clearly states that all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God (Ro 3.23). Sin has become such a relative term in our society. People even describe chocolate cake as sinful! However, the Bible defines sin as stepping over boundaries formed by God with His Law. We do that in many ways.
Most people think of sin as robbery, murder, adultery, and the like, but the Bible tells us sin is anything that doesn’t please God. Sin is…
· Anything we do that we shouldn’t do, like losing our temper or stealing
· Anything we should do, but don’t, like failing to pray or read the Bible, or truly love our neighbor
There are not only sins in deed but also sins in word and thought, like lying, cursing, lust, pride, and hatred. The Bible says these are all sins.
I wonder how many times a day the average person sins? I imagine that it could be 50-100 times or even more. But suppose a man was able to keep his sin tally to three times a day. He’d be a truly amazing person. I mean - one unkind thought, one instance of losing his temper, and one failure to do what he ought toward God or man – he’d practically be a walking angel!
Even so, three times a day means 100 times a month and 1,000 times a year! By the time that man reached 75, he’d have over 70,000 sins on his account. What would happen to a habitual offender in a criminal court with 70,000 transgressions on his record?! I think we know.
Jesus says that the passing grade for entrance into Heaven is perfection. Imagine that! He said, “Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.” (Mt 5.48) Just as a large jug of cold mountain spring water containing a small vile of lethal poison would not be acceptable to drink, so our lives containing any sin at all are certainly not perfect and are not acceptable to God. Hopefully, you now see why it is impossible for anyone to get into heaven by their good works! This comes into sharper focus when we look at what the Bible says about God.
God is merciful and He doesn’t want to punish us. The Bible says that God is love (1 Jn 4.8). However, God is also just and must punish our sin. “He will by no means leave the guilty unpunished (Ex 34.7).” If God did not have mercy, He wouldn’t be loving, and if He did not punish sin, He wouldn’t be just.
We have a problem. On the one hand God is loving and merciful and He doesn’t want to punish us, but on the other hand, He is just and must punish our sin. How does He solve this problem? God solved this problem in the Person of Jesus Christ.
Now, who is Jesus? The Bible says that He is actually God in the flesh. Jesus Christ was in the beginning with God because Jesus was and is God. Yet, Jesus also became man in a Bethlehem manger long ago (John 1.1, 14). That is why we celebrate Christmas. But, Jesus the God-Man was born to die.
Jesus’ death was His once for all sacrifice to pay the penalty for our sins. He suffered once for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God (1 Pet 3.18). As if a judge himself were to pay the sentence for a guilty defendant, so the Judge of our souls became a man and Himself paid the penalty for our sins. Jesus died on the cross and rose from the dead to pay the penalty for your sin and to purchase a place in Heaven for you.
Now, just believing these facts is not enough. The Bible says, “You believe there is one God. You do well. Even the demons believe – and tremble!” (Jam 2.19) In other words, Satan and his demons believe that Jesus is God, but they are not going to Heaven!
We must place our trust in Jesus Christ alone to receive the gift of eternal life. “Believe on (trust in) the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved” (Acts 16.31).
Suppose you’re sailing your boat out on the ocean when a big storm comes up. Your boat begins to fall apart and you find yourself in the water, hanging onto one little piece of wood with the waves crashing over you. You’re about to drown when a Coastguard cutter comes up and the captain leans over the railing and yells, “I’m throwing you a life preserver. Grab on and we’ll pull you to safety.” What would you do? Would you continue to hold onto your little piece of wood, or would you grab onto the life preserver? You would grab the life preserver, of course!
We are drowning in our sin, unable to save ourselves. But God leans over the railing of Heaven and says, “I’ve thrown you a life preserver, His name is Jesus Christ. Grab onto Him and I will pull you to safety.” Jesus Christ is the only way to eternal life. We can hold onto our own little piece of wood if we want to, but none of our good works will ever be enough to earn the gift of eternal life. Jesus Christ is God’s only life preserver and we must trust Him alone in order to receive the gift of eternal life.
Would you like to receive the gift of eternal life? If so, then I would ask that you pray with me right now…
· Thank You, that Heaven is a free gift.
· I admit that I have sinned.
· I cannot save myself.
· I know You love me.
· I realize You are just and must punish my sins.
· Thank You for Jesus who is God
· Who died to pay the penalty for my sins.
· And now by faith
· I place my full trust in Jesus Christ alone …for my eternal salvation.
· I now receive the free gift of eternal life.
· Come into my life
· Forgive me of my sins
· Help me become the person You want me to be.
· In Jesus’ Name I pray, Amen.
If you have prayed with me and made this decision to trust Christ alone for your eternal life, I urge you to contact us at Heritage so that we might help you grow in your new-found faith. Our phone number at the church is 925-757-5242. May God bless you as you enter into this new life! Thank you for listening.
 This presentation is an adaptation of the Evangelism Explosion presentation of the Gospel.