There Is a Way to Heaven
I remember a line from a Gospel Bill video from years ago. Dirty Girty, the mountain woman, had come down out of the mountains on her yearly pilgrimage to find a husband. She would lasso any poor, single fellow who came across her path. Nicodemus and Elmer Barnes, being single, were understandably scared. Miss Lana, the godly storekeeper, has a talk with Dirty Girty. The line I remember is from Miss Lana, “There is a Heaven to gain and a Hell to shun.” Dirty Girty listened to her words, asked Jesus into her heart, and was Dirty Girty no more.
Now I realize this is a children’s video, but I think I learned more from watching these videos with my children than my children may have. We cannot just live any way we want in this world and then at the end of our lives declare, “Well, they’re in Heaven now.” It doesn’t work that way. Nicodemus was a religious leader in Bible times. He realized there was something very interesting about Jesus and His Words, but he was an important Jew. He couldn’t let himself be seen talking with Jesus. So he came to Jesus by night. “Now there was a certain man among the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a ruler (a leader, an authority) among the Jews, who came to Jesus at night and said to Him, Rabbi, we know and are certain that You have come from God (as) a Teacher; for no one can do these signs (these wonderworks, these miracles- and produce the proofs) that You do unless God is with him” (John 3:1-2).
Jesus, as always, has the perfect answer to any statement. “Jesus answered him, I assure you, most solemnly I tell you, that unless a person is born again (anew, from above), he cannot ever see (know, be acquainted with and experience) the kingdom of God” (John 3:3). Nicodemus is understandably confused. “Nicodemus said to Him, How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter his mother’s womb again and be born?” (John 3:4).
Again, Jesus knows how to answer him, “Jesus answered, I assure you, most solemnly I tell you, unless a man is born of water and (even) the Spirit, he cannot (ever) enter the kingdom of God” (John 3:5). “And just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the desert (on a pole), so must (so it is necessary that) the Son of Man be lifted up (on the cross). In order that everyone who believes in Him (who cleaves to Him, trusts Him, and relies on Him) may not perish, but have eternal life and (actually) live forever! For God so greatly loved and dearly prized the world that He (even) gave up His only begotten (unique) Son, so that whoever believes in (trusts in, clings to, relies on) Him shall not perish (come to destruction, be lost) but have eternal (everlasting) life” (John 3:14-16).
The series, The Chosen, has one of the most powerful scenes I have seen when Nicodemus comes to speak to Jesus. I encourage you to watch this series; You will understand the love Jesus has for you as you watch.
In Romans we read exactly how we are to ask Jesus into our hearts or to be saved. “Because if you acknowledge and confess with your lips that Jesus is Lord and in your heart believe (adhere to, trust in, and rely on the truth) that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved” (Romans 10:9). Salvation is a free gift from God that only has to be accepted. What about those who feel they have sinned so grievously that God could never forgive them and welcome them into Heaven. “For everyone who calls upon the name of the Lord (invoking Him as Lord) will be saved” (Romans 10:13). Does everyone need to ask Jesus into their hearts? What about those who feel they are pretty good people? They try to be kind to others and live their lives in a good way. “Since all have sinned and are falling short of the honor and glory which God bestows and receives” (Romans 3:23). “As it is written, None is righteous, just and truthful and upright and conscientious, no, not one” (Romans 3:10). All of us have been born with a sinful nature. Every one of us needs to ask Jesus into our hearts to be saved. All you have to do is say, “Heavenly Father, I believe in my heart that Jesus is Lord. I believe that He died for my sins and rose from the grave on the third day. I ask you to forgive me of my sins. I ask you to come into my heart and be my God. Thank you, Father, for loving me.” That’s it. If you prayed a simple prayer like that, you have become a child of God. All of Heaven rejoices when one person comes into God’s family and is rescued from the horror of Hell.
If you prayed this prayer, I encourage you to get into your Bible and learn who God really is. Pray and talk to Him and give Him a chance to speak to you. Join a Bible-believing church where you can be taught the Word of God. Learn of the authority you have in this life through Jesus. I encourage you to contact Kenneth Copeland Ministries and ask for the New Believer’s package, which they send to you for no charge. It will help you know how to begin to read your Bible and learn of God. Spend some time listening to their podcasts, as well as those of Jerry Savelle, Keith Moore, Jesse Duplantis, and others as you receive the wisdom that they have accumulated over many years and are very willing to share with you. You have an exciting life in front of you as you see God’s power at work in you and through you. God bless you!