Summary: What teachings of the scriptures encapsulate the requirements for eternal life?
What teachings of the scriptures encapsulate the requirements for eternal life? We're going to look at some scriptures, and some instructions in those scriptures for how to receive eternal life, live it out on Earth, and how to be found as a faithful servant when we meet Jesus in heaven.
This could be said to be the most important topic imaginable because it deals directly with how we are to come to receive eternal life, and an eternal inheritance.
What is the equation in the scriptures that shows us how to inherit eternal life in the new City of God? Let's take a look at some of these aspects. We won't be defaulting back to any established theological framework, instead we're just going to look directly to the scriptures, emphasizing the New Testament, which is our current covenant, while also understanding that the scriptures are a consummate reflection of a saga played out in the context of the Old Testament. Let's start.
Christ Alone -
Ephesians 2:8-9 ESV For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.
There is only one way that we can receive forgiveness for all our past sins. There is only one way we can be reborn. There is only one way we can receive the Holy Spirit who lives in us. There is only one way that we can live a holy life, and receive forgiveness for future sins, as they come along. And all of those only statements are answered by one person: Jesus Christ.
We must receive Christ. We must trust in Christ. We must declare our complete allegiance to Christ. We must give everything to Christ. We must confess our sins and ask Christ for forgiveness. And when we trust in Christ, and trust in His perfect life, death, and resurrection, and believe that Jesus died in our place on the cross, to remove our sins, and to give us His righteousness, then we are truly saved.
And if we died a moment after believing these truths, like the thief on the cross who declared that he was a sinner and Christ was a pure savior, then we would go to heaven and be with Christ in paradise. And that leads us into our next area.
Repentance toward God -
2 Corinthians 7:10 ESV For godly grief produces a repentance that leads to salvation without regret, whereas worldly grief produces death.
We must repent of all sin and repent in the ideas in our minds. The thief on the cross repented in that he acknowledged his own sinfulness and he acknowledged the blameless nature of Jesus Christ. He said,"We are judged justly. But this man is innocent. Remember me Jesus when you go into your kingdom." And Jesus replied,"Truly I tell you on this day you will be with me in paradise." And Jesus spoke the truth. That is repentance of mind, to admit our sinfulness and Christ's perfection.
But to repent also means to lay aside our sins, and to embrace a new lifestyle. Because most of us won't die instantly after meeting Jesus.
Living in the Spirit -
Galatians 5:16-18 ESV But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other, to keep you from doing the things you want to do. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.
The question could quickly be: How can I live a life of freedom from sin, when I'm so addicted to sin and so powerless over sin? The answer to that question is life in the Spirit. When we live the Spirit life, we deny the flesh, and take up our cross and follow Jesus. When we live in the Spirit we surrender all to the Spirit of God, and He leads us into all righteousness. When we live in the Spirit, we crucify the flesh, and recognize over time, often months and years, that we are dead, and our lives are no longer our own. If we continue to yield to sin, the Spirit will convict us, that to continue in sin will lead us out of the arms of Christ, and into the depths of hell. In the fear of the Lord, then we repent truly, yield ourselves to the Spirit and we find our shackles have been broken and the Spirit is at last reigning in us. Access all of these blessings through constant desperate prayer. God will answer, in time. Keep appealing.
Abiding in Christ -