Summary: Why do poeple choose to be saved? Why did you choose to be saved? If the choice is based upon the right thing, there would be less backsliding.
WHY I CHOSE SALVATION
By Pastor Jim May
I don’t remember exactly how old I was when I first began to understand that I was a sinner in need of a Savior. I can remember as far back as maybe the age of 5 or 6 years old when I would go to church, sit in the Sunday School classes and hear Sis. Wallace, or Bill Tarver, and others who were faithful servants, working with kids and teens, trying to instill within them the Word of God. Their whole objective, as well as ours, was focused upon one all-important goal – to help kids find salvation through Jesus Christ and teach them to be committed and faithful Christians.
As I sat in those classes week after week, sometimes I remember that they weren’t too exciting, and sometimes they were really boring. While the Word of God is alive and exciting, how we present it, and represent it, has a lot to do with how well the message is received. That’s why I believe so much in preparation time. As a rule of thumb, I am convinced that it takes a minimum of double the preparation time compared to the preparation time for a class or sermon to be effective.
Teachers, those students in your class only hear you, at best, two hours a week. In that 2 hours you have to make a powerful impact upon their hearts and lives that they will never forget. An impact that will overcome the 168 hours that make up the rest of the week, that they spend in front of the TV, playing computer games and listening to the fighting, murdering and killing that is everywhere you turn.
I know the Word of God will not return void and that God, the Holy Ghost, will impress it upon those who will hear, but God wants you to do your part too. If your class is an hour long and you spend 10 minutes after you get to church getting prepared, or 30 minutes at home just before you leave for church, then you aren’t teaching, you’re babysitting and playing around with the souls of those kids and God will require an answer for your lack of preparing.
Pastor, and I’m speaking to myself here too, if you aren’t spending time in prayer, fasting and studying for at least two hours or more before every service, you’re doing your flock a great injustice. I know that God can impress upon me a message in a moment of time and that, through the anointing of the Holy Ghost, I can sometimes preach a message that will impact your lives greatly without preparing in advance, or can I? You see; if you haven’t spent time in prayer and studying the Word before, I don’t believe that God will send that kind of anointing.
Those kinds of sermons are few and far between. No matter whether you are an evangelist, pastor or a teacher, there must be time for preparation if the message is going to have a proper impact.
When I think of when that moment of salvation came for me, I’m pretty certain that it happened sometime between the ages of 8 and 10. I do remember when I was filled with the Holy Ghost – I was 12 years old, kneeling between the first and second pew of a little Pentecostal church.
How many of you can remember the day and circumstances when you first received salvation? When was the very first time that you confessed Jesus as Lord, asked Him to come into your heart, and gave your life to Him? Can you remember when you were filled with the Holy Ghost?
The day, the hour, the circumstances are all important, but the most important thing is that it happened. One day you woke up living in sin, wandering about in a world filled with darkness and death – and before that day ended you were gloriously saved, born again by the Spirit of God, washed in the Blood of the Lamb, and given eternal life and the light of God came on in your heart and life. What a glorious day that was!
But why did you get saved? What brought you to that place where you decided that it had to happen?
Too often, in our day, there are a lot of people in the church who don’t even know if they are saved or not. They don’t know what salvation is because they haven’t been taught the Word of God. They don’t know why they are even going to church other than it feels good to go, their conscience is appeased for a while, and they can claim to be a Christian, and somehow, through sacrifice and suffering, they will make it to heaven.