It is such a great privilege to be able to personally know Almighty God. Just to think that God, the creator and ruler of everything even desires to have a personal relationship with us is amazing! What better relationship could we possibly find than the one He offers us? There is no better offer!
Knowing God is the most critical thing in our lives. Until we really know Him, nothing else matters! And notice I said “Knowing God”, not “Knowing about God”. There is a major difference!
You see, knowing about God only gives us information. Good information, yes, but still just information. Personally knowing Him gives us a relationship that will impact and change our lives. Psalm 34:8 tells us, “Oh, taste and see that the LORD is good! Blessed [happy] is the man who takes refuge in him!”
So, how do we come to know Him? Well, John 3:16 tells us, “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life.” That is the basic truth of salvation. However, let’s stop here and and try to understand and realize what this really means.
The words “whoever believes in Him” are important. You see it is easy to say “I believe in Jesus” or even “I believe in God”. But, what is it that we are claiming to believe? It’s much more than just believing about Him or simply believing He exists. In order for us to have a life-changing relationship with God, the Holy Spirit must convict us of our need for a Savior. In other words, we must realize that we are hopeless and helpless without God! That all starts when we are convicted of our sinfulness, we realize that without Christ we have no hope for this life or for eternity, and we see that He alone is our only means of salvation.
To experience this salvation, we have to believe in what He offers. You see, the Bible tells us in Romans 6:23, “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord”. If we’re guilty of just one sin in all of our lives, we’re guilty before God. And someone has to pay the penalty for our sins. Jesus Christ has already paid the penalty through His death on the cross, but we have to believe in Him and accept this free gift that He offers.
That free gift is found only in Jesus Christ, so we must trust and believe that He paid the penalty for our sins when He died on the cross, and that He arose again from the grave in victory. Jesus said, “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 5:3) Those who understand and realize that without God’s gift of salvation, we have no hope are the “poor in spirit”. We know we can do nothing to save ourselves! We can only come to God through Jesus Christ.
We express our faith in Him through prayer, but it must be words from our heart, not just words we copied or heard someone say. Too often we hear people tell us, “If you just say these words, you’ll become a Christian.” However, that’s not completely true. We must also believe the words we are saying. They have to come from a heart of repentance. Romans 10:9 tells us, “if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” With our mouth we confess, but we also must believe in our hearts, and God knows our hearts, so we can’t fool Him.
So, we must believe Jesus is the Son of God, and that He died for our sins. And, when we have begun that real relationship with God through His Son, Jesus Christ, then we can begin to grow and learn how to walk as each Christian should desire to live every day.