Summary: The most important question we can answer is, "How do I become a Christian?"

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(taken from a message by Bob Russell)


TEXT: ACTS 2:22-24, 36-41


OPEN: A. The title of this message is “How Do I Become a Christian?”

--that’s such an important question. Three reasons I want to preach this message:

1. If you’re not a Christian, you need a clear signal, not mixed messages concerning this issue

2. If you are a Christian, you need to be confident that you’ve met the requirements in God’s Word.

3. If you’re a maturing Christian, you need to feel adequate in your knowledge in this area so that

you can share with others how they can become a Christian

4. A man went forward during the invitation time one Sunday. A counselor met him and told him

to kneel and “pray through.” While he was praying, another counselor came and asked him if he

would sign a card. After he signed the card, another counselor came and put his arm around him.

The counselor said, “Watch for the light, brother. When I was saved, I prayed and saw a bright

light.” Another counselor came and said, “Hold on, brother, hold on.” Another counselor said,

“Let go, brother, let go.” The man said, “Boy, between praying through, signing a card,

watching for a light, and holding on and letting go, I nearly went to hell!”

B. What does a person do to become a Christian?

--I want to invite us to do three things together this morning:

1. Let’s listen objectively

a. Don’t listen to see if what I say measures up to your past experience or tradition

b. Let’s just open God’s Word and allow Him to speak to us

--let’s listen objectively

2. Let’s study thoroughly

a. Let’s not take one verse and build a whole theology around that verse.

b. The Bible challenges us to correctly handle the Word of God and to study the whole counsel

of God

1). I heard about a fellow that argued that the Bible gave him permission to have eight wives

--four better and four worse

2). People can take one verse of the Bible or one phrase concerning salvation and close their

minds to any other verses that might expand on that subject

c. When you study the New Testament about how to become a Christian, sometimes the answer

is more detailed depending on the knowledge of the person being dealt with

--We need to put ALL of the Scripture together to form a complete picture

d. Let’s listen objectively, let’s study correctly, and…

3. Let’s begin correctly

a. The Bible is our source of authority but the place to begin in the Bible is after Jesus died and

rose from the grave.

b. A Christian is someone who follows the risen Christ.

--So, to discover how to become a Christian, we shouldn’t turn to encounters people had with

Jesus in the Gospels because He had not yet completed His mission

1). Those encounters give us insight into who Jesus is and what it means to be a follower of


2). But a study of Nicodemus, the rich, young ruler, the woman at the well, the thief on the

cross, do not tell us how to become a Christian

--Technically those people lived under the Old Testament dispensation. Jesus had not died

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