Romans 3:23 "For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God"
Romans 6:23 "For the wages of sin is death ; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord."
Romans 5:8 "But God commendeth His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us."
Romans 10:9-10 "That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation."
Yes, it's as easy as that! All through the Bible, God shares His message of love, but many never receive it. The reasons given for not accepting God's grace are many. Below are some of the most common ones I've heard:
"There are too many hypocrites in the churches!"
My initial thought on hearing this one is, "There's always room for one more," but seriously, the fact of the matter is that getting saved doesn't make you perfect. Getting saved is the same as being born, except that it is a spiritual birth instead of a physical birth. How many newborns have you seen who are mature enough to control themselves? How many children? For that matter, how many "adults" do you know who never behave childishly? The point is that being born again is the start of a new life. It takes time to develop into a mature Christian. Even mature Christians make mistakes. As children of God, like physical children, we don't always obey our Father. Does this make us any less His children? Not by any means! He loves us even when we disobey Him!
"I'll find my own way into Heaven."
The Bible says in Acts 4:12, "Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved." This means just what it says. There is only one way to be saved and that is through Jesus Christ. When you consider all the other religions that claim that their way is right, think about the differences with Christianity. In Christianity the Supreme Creator of all that is reaches down to His creations (that's us) and offers us the free gift of everlasting life in Heaven. In all other religions, their gods give them tasks to perform in order to achieve whatever goal they have for when this life is over. They work themselves to death to spread their religion in hopes that they may end up in a better place when this life is over. With Christ you can be assured that you will be in the best place of all!
"I've thought about it, but think I'll wait until later."
How much later do you have? You're not even assured that you'll have one more breath after the one you're taking now. Is it really worth risking eternal damnation?
"Isn't the Bible full of contradictions?"
The Bible was written originally in Hebrew and Greek (the ancient version of both). In those days they didn't have word processors or copy machines. When a scroll would be getting worn out, it would have to be copied by hand. The copies would be checked several times by several authorities before being certified as accurate. The copies of the original scrolls that we now have are numerous (in the thousands) and come from every part of the world, but well over 90% of them are in full agreement. The other few are copies made a century or two after the originals by a group that deleted many passages that supported some of the most important doctrines of Christianity. Most of the newer English translations came from these, but the Authorized King James Version came from the majority, and was translated by a committee of men who were as fluent in the Hebrew and Greek languages as they were in their native English. How could so many scrolls copied and recopied over the centuries in different places in the world still be the same? That should be proof positive that they are true to the originals written by those who witnessed the events first-hand.
"Wasn't the Bible written by a bunch of men for their own glory?"
The Bible was written down by people who were under the direct influence of God. They only wrote what He told them to. So many of them were persecuted, even executed, because of the things they wrote and preached. Would they have been this dedicated to a God they didn't truly believe in? Would they have kept preaching boldly and facing torture and death after the crucifixion if they hadn't seen the risen Saviour? Of course not!
"I'm too bad for God to save me."
Nothing is so bad that you can't be saved. Everybody has sinned at some point in their life, and the penalty is death (eternal death in Hell). It doesn't matter how much sin is in your life, sin is sin is sin... God is perfect (without sin) and therefore cannot accept anyone with sin in their lives into His Kingdom. Although He cannot accept the sin, He still loves His creations and wants to save them. That's why He came to live as one of us, in the flesh, as Jesus Christ. He put aside His Heavenly glory and allowed Himself to live a life as a human. The difference is that He lived the whole life, even facing the temptations we all face, without sinning. When He was nailed to the cross, He took all the sins of everyone from the beginning of time to the end upon Himself. This perfect God, who knew no sin, became sin for His creations. He allowed Himself to be beaten, have His beard pulled out, be spat upon and mocked, and finally have nails driven through His wrists and feet and hang on a cross because He loved us. When He took all the sins of the world upon Him, then experienced the one thing that everyone fears, death, all those sins died with Him. He gave all that He had for you. If that was the end of the story, it would have been a noble deed, but it wouldn't have done us any good. On the third day after He died, He rose again and destroyed the power of death over us. All He asks in return is that we accept His sacrifice and let Him save us. He did give us the free will to choose whether we want to or not.
"I want to be saved, but I have to get some things in my life straightened out first."
This is the same as getting cleaned up to take a bath. It makes no sense. Confess your sins to God and ask Him to save you. He will help you get your life straight. Nobody can do it alone.
"If God loves me so much, He wouldn't send me to Hell."
As stated above, God gave us free will to choose whether or not to serve Him. He wouldn't send anyone to Hell, but He gives us the choice to go there if we decide to reject Him. He didn't design Hell for us anyway. It was originally intended for Satan and his demons, but after Satan managed to get man to sin, Hell has been the fate for those who choose not to follow God.
"I'd rather go to Hell anyway. All my friends are there!"
Hell is nothing to laugh about. It's a place of outer darkness and torment. If your friends are there, you won't be able to see them anyway. You won't be able to see anything at all. There will be nothing but suffering. The Bible says in Matthew 13:41-43, "The Son of man shall send forth His angels, and they shall gather out of His kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity; And shall cast them into a furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth. Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Who hath ears to hear, let him hear." Hell doesn't sound like much of a party, does it?
"I'd like to be saved. What do I do?"
The only way eternal salvation can be yours is to come to God with a repentant heart (II Peter 3:9), and believe with all your heart that God raised Jesus from the dead (Romans 10:9) to finish His redemptive work in our behalf. "...Justified ...through faith in his blood ...raised again for our justification ...justified by faith ...justified by his blood ...saved by his life ...we have now received the atonement." (Romans 3:24,25; 4:25; 5:1,9-11). "Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood." (Revelation 1:5). Jesus preached that men should REPENT AND BELIEVE THE GOSPEL! (Mark 1:15)