New Life Church. What is the Gospel of Salvation?

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1 New Life Church BAPTISM CLASS In short, baptism is an outward expression of an inward commitment of faith in Jesus. In this class, first we will talk about the inward commitment of faith, second we ll talk about the outward expression of baptism. What is the Gospel of Salvation? 1. The Gospel is victory over sin and death. Literally, the word for gospel refers to a messenger who brings back word to a ruler that a victory has been achieved. The good news of the Bible is that Jesus has given us victory over death and the power of sin. 54 Death has been swallowed up in victory. 55 Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting? 56 The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. 57 But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. (1 Corinthians 15:54-57) Jesus lived a perfect life, died a real death, and defeated death through the resurrection. 3 For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, (1 Corinthians 15:3-4) The gospel is evidence of God s love. But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. (Romans 5:8)

2 2. The gospel of salvation is available to anyone, and everyone needs it. No one is perfect, not by their own standards, let alone by God s standard....for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God... For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 3:23; 6:23 God sent his Son, Jesus, to pay the price for everyone. The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance. (2 Peter 3:9) In short, salvation is essential help for our biggest problem, which is sin (separation from God). 3. The gospel ought to be accepted in faith 16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes: first to the Jew, then to the Gentile. 17 For in the gospel the righteousness of God is revealed a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: The righteous will live by faith. (Romans 1:16-17) 8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God 9 not by works, so that no one can boast. (Ephesians 2:8-9) 4. The gospel life is a life of good works. Our response through obedience isn t a payment for salvation. Eternal life is free gift that can t be earned. Living according to God s will is an expression of thankfulness and joy. For we are God s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. (Ephesians 2:10) Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! (2 Corinthians 5:17) Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit (Galatians 5:25)

3 A Simple Prayer of Faith in Jesus: "Dear Jesus, thank you for making me and loving me, even when I've ignored you and gone my own way. I realize I need you in my life and I'm sorry for my sins. I ask you to forgive me. Thank you for dying on the cross for me. Please help me to understand it more. As much as I know how, I want to follow you from now on. Please come into my life and make me a new person inside. I accept your gift of salvation. Please help me to grow now as a Christian." Have you said all of these things to God? IF YOU BELIEVE, YOU BELONG! What is baptism? Baptism is the obedient act of a BELIEVING Christian who wants to publicly confess their personal commitment to Jesus Christ. It is the symbolic WASHING AWAY of one s old, sinful past and the RISING again to LIFE, God s way. The act of baptism can be defined as an outward expression of an inward decision. What does baptism mean? Baptism illustrates Jesus DEATH, BURIAL and RESURRECTION. Christ died for our sins... He was buried... and He rose again. 1 Corinthians 15: 3-4 Baptism illustrates NEW LIFE as a Christian: trusting and obeying Jesus By our baptism then, we were buried with Him and shared His death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead... so also we may live a NEW LIFE. Romans 6:4 Baptism does not make you a Christian. It is a demonstration that you already believe. It is important to understand that baptism does not save you. You are saved only by your faith in Jesus.

4 Why do we get baptized? To FOLLOW the example set by Jesus & because he COMMANDED it.... Jesus came from Nazareth and was baptized by John in the river. Mark 1: 9 Jesus said, Go then, to all people everywhere and make them my disciples, baptize them in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit... Matthew 28:19-20 When is a good time to get baptized? As soon as you BELIEVE! THERE IS NO REASON TO DELAY! Every disciple of Jesus ought to be baptized. As soon as you have decided to trust Christ with your life, you can and should be baptized. If you re waiting until you re perfect, you ll never be ready. Those who believe... were baptized... that day! Acts 8:35-38 Getting Ready for your baptism Sign up! You can sign-up at the end of our baptism class, or if you aren't sure yet, you can sign up online at OR check the Baptism box on the back of the Communication Card OR you can call ext 300. Meet in the Worship Center (front row in front of the baptismal tank) 15 minutes prior to the service. Wear appropriate baptism attire (stuff you can t see through when wet). Bring a towel and a change of clothing. Invite your family and friends. We look forward to sharing with you this important step in your walk with Christ Jesus! May God bless you as you continue to seek Him!

5 10 promises every Christian should know 1. If you believe, you belong in the family of God Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God-- children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband's will, but born of God. John 1: Believers have the hope of eternal life And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life. 1 John 5: Nothing can separate believers from God s love For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8: God has a great plan for every believer s life For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11 5. God answers the prayers of believers Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive, and your joy will be complete. John 16:24 6. Believers aren t tempted beyond what they can handle No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it. 1 Corinthians 10:13 7. Believers are a brand new creation Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! 2 Corinthians 5:17 8. God will complete the work he begins in believers Being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus. Philippians 1:6 9. Believers have God s protection Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil's schemes. Ephesians 6: God s love is unconditional, it can t be earned or lost. But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, Titus 3:4

6 10 reflection questions to help you explore your faith The following questions can help you reflect on your decision to accept Jesus as Lord in your life. The Bible teaches that becoming a believer is a deliberate step of faith, we want your decision to have some depth! The roots of your choice grow when you reflect upon your experience and God s grace in your life. Work through the following questions slowly, and at your own pace. It s not a race and you don t have to finish all of them in one sitting. Don t let the questions limit you, they re meant to serve as a springboard for your thoughts. If you want to write about something that s not covered in a question, go for it! 1. Why do you think God wants you to be in his family? 2. Why did you decide to make Jesus the Lord and Savior of your life? What factors went into your decision? 3. Who are some people who were influential in your decision? 4. What attracted you to the people you just mentioned? What are some of the qualities you respect or admire about those people? 5. How would you describe your relationship with God right now? 6. What are five words you think best describes God? Next to each word, write why you chose it. 7. The Bible says, Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation, the old has gone and the new has come! (2 Corinthians 5:17) What are some of the old things in your life which you hope to leave behind? 8. What do you think are some good things to do to deepen your relationship with God? (If you re stuck, think about this: what would you do to deepen a relationship with a friend?) 9. Who are some Christians you know and respect and could talk to about your faith? Write down some big time questions you or your friends have about God, Jesus, the Bible, life, etc. 10. What do you hope and expect your new life to look like now that you re a Christian?

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