What Does the Easter Story Have to do with Me Going to Heaven?
By Jeanne Dennis
After Jesus died to pay for the sins of all people, He stayed dead in the grave until the third day. Jesus chose to die for us, but because He is God, death could not hold Him captive.
On the morning of the third day, He came back to life with a perfected body, suited for heaven. The scars from his cruel death, however, remained, as both a proof and a reminder of the price He paid to save us.
If Jesus had not died and risen from the dead, we would have no hope of heaven. All of us have sinned (broken God’s laws) and are imperfect. God’s perfect holiness prevents us from entering heaven with sin tainting our souls. Yet we are incapable of cleansing ourselves from sin. Contrary to popular belief, our good deeds won’t balance out the bad. Even if all our deeds were good ones, they could never measure up to God’s holiness. Something had to be done to bridge the gap. Someone had to pay the penalty for our sins against a holy God. And only a perfect person could do it.
Since no human is or can be perfect, God came in human form—in the form of Jesus—and paid the debt Himself. Now Jesus is back in heaven. The Bible calls Him the “firstborn from the dead” (Rev. 1:5), because His resurrection on Easter opened the way to eternal life for anyone who will accept His free gift of salvation.
The reason God will accept us if we belong to Jesus Christ is that He no longer sees us as the imperfect humans we are. He chooses to see us through the perfection of His Son Jesus. The Bible tells us that when we accept Jesus, we become new creations in Him. Jesus covers us with His righteousness, His goodness, and God casts our sins into a sea of forgetfulness. He will no longer remember them or count them against us.
So what does the Easter story have to do with your going to heaven? It has everything to do with it. For if Jesus had not paid for your sins and risen from the dead, you would never reach heaven. But because He did, you can accept His free gift of forgiveness. Right now, you can live a new life in Him, and then when you die, you can live forever with Him in heaven.
And that’s not just an Easter story. It’s the truth.
Do You Want a Relationship with God?
If you want to have a relationship with God, and know that the shed blood of Jesus will cover your sins, pray this prayer right now:
Lord Jesus Christ, I believe that you took the pain of the cross to give me new life. I ask you to come into my life and to give me your peace and joy. I confess that I am a sinner -- that I have gone my own way and have done wrong. Please forgive me for my sins. I receive you now as my Lord and Savior. Please fill me with your Holy Spirit. Help me to follow you and to serve you all my life. Thank you, Lord Jesus. Amen.
If you prayed that prayer, you are now a child of God. The things of your old life have passed away and He has made all things new.
We want to join you in celebrating your new life. Please send us an e-mail to let us know that you prayed to receive Jesus as your Savior. Or you can call our Prayer Counseling Center at (800) 759-0700. A caring friend is available to talk with you and send you some resources to help you begin your walk with the Lord.
Learn more about new life in Jesus Christ
Gordon Robertson: What does it mean to be 'born again?'
A Higher Calling: Guide to Christian Life
What is Truth?
your prayer request
a church near you
Living by the Book: Learn more about being a Christian
CBN Teaching Sheets
Learn more about the Bible at our Spiritual Life section
As an award-winning author, national speaker, and BreakPoint Centurion, Jeanne Dennis partners with Christian families to pass on the heritage of faith. She is the author/co-author of eleven books, including Running Barefoot on Holy Ground: Childlike Intimacy with God. You can e-mail her at : [email protected]
More from Jeanne at www.jeannedennis.com.
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