How to Know God

If you've spent some time on our website, then you've gotten solid answers to some really important questions. You also, no doubt, have realized that we all have a sin problem that needs a solution... and the only solution is Jesus Christ. 

So how can you receive forgiveness and the promise of eternal life in heaven?
How do you begin a relationship with God through Jesus Christ? Let's see what the Bible says. Take your time on this page. It's so important.

You can also view the video by PASTOR GREG LAURIE on How to Know God

Be clear that heaven is not earned or deserved.
Salvation is a free gift that is offered to you. No amount of personal effort, good works or religious deeds can give you a place in Heaven with God.

The Bible says: "For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith — and this not from
yourselves, it is the gift of God — not by works, so that no one can boast."
--Ephesians 2:8-9

Grace means unmerited or undeserved favor.


1. Realize that you are a sinner

No matter how good a life we try to live, we still fall miserably short of being a good person. That is
because we are all sinners. We all fall short of God's desire for us to be holy. The Bible says:

"All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God."
--Romans 3:23
"There is no one righteous, not even one."
-- Romans 3:10

This is because we can not become who we are supposed to be without Jesus Christ.

"For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord." -- Romans 6:23

2. Recognize that Jesus Christ died on the cross for you and He is the only way

The Bible says:

"But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us."
--Romans 5:8

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall
not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world,
but to save the world through him."
-- John 3:16-17

The word BELIEVE in the original Greek language (the New Testament was written in Greek) is
which means TRUST. It carries with it the connotation of placing all your weight on something. It's important
to note the difference between a belief that is merely intellectual (or head knowledge) and a belief that
means totally trusting your life to it.  

So, this is the Good News. That God loves us so much that He sent His only Son to die in our place on a cross. He
took upon Himself the punishment you and I deserve for our sins. Then he resurrected (rose) from the dead 3 days
later, defeating sin and death and giving us an opportunity to receive His gift of salvation.

"Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me."
-- John 14:6

3. Repent of your sin

The Bible says:

"Repent of your sins and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped away."
-- Acts 3:19

The word repent means to change our direction in life, to make a U-turn. Coming to Christ with a heart of
repentance means you are willing to turn from anything that is not pleasing to Him. Some sins in your life
will be clear to you now. Others will become clear over time as you read the Bible.

Jesus preached it was necessary for people to repent of their sins. He said:

"Unless you repent, you too will all perish."
-- Luke 13:3
"I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance."
-- Luke 5:32
“Repent, for the kingdom of heaven has come near.”
-- Matthew 4:17
"There is forgiveness of sins for all who repent."
--Luke 24:47 (NLT)

4. Receive Jesus Christ into your life

Becoming a Christian is not merely believing some creed or going to church on Sunday. It is having Christ
Himself take residence in your life and heart.
Jesus said:

"Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in. . ."
-- Revelation 3:20

"Jesus declared, 'I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again.'"
-- John 3:3

When Jesus says "born again" he means a spiritual birth. It's what happens to you when you invite Jesus
Christ to be Savior and Master of your life.
The Bible also says:

"If you confess with your mouth, 'Jesus is Lord,' and believe in your heart that God raised him from
the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with
your mouth that you confess and are saved. As the Scripture says, 'Anyone who trusts in him will
never be put to shame.'"
-- Romans 10:9-11

Remember, salvation and eternal life cannot be earned by works or good behavior or "fixing yourself" first.
It's a gift offered to all. But like any gift offered, you must choose to receive it on God's terms, which have been
presented to you here on this page. That's why they call it the Gospel (Good News) -- because it is!

Finally, it's important to understand how Jesus defines a
true Christian (a Christ-follower).
It's part of the package when you say YES to Him.

Jesus said:
"If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your
cross daily, and follow me."
-- Luke 9:23

"Whoever desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me. For whoever
desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake and the gospel’s will save it."
-- Mark 8:34-35

The Christian life does not mean an easy, problem-free or sin-free life. But it does mean an abundant life (a full life)
of greater meaning and purpose. Like everyone, Christians have trials, struggles and temptations. And the length of
life here on earth is not known. But when you become born again, the Spirit of God -- which is the Holy Spirit -- takes
up residence in your heart and He will help you. He will be your comforter, your guide and your daily strength.

As a Christian, as you spend regular time with God in prayer and in His Word (the Bible), you will notice the Holy
Spirit giving you new desires to replace the old. You will find your conscience more sensitive, and a heart that
wants to please God in your choices. So know you are not alone but are destined to thrive as you love, follow and
obey Jesus and love other people with God's love.

What's your decision?

Do you have a sorrow for your sins and are you ready to repent? Would you like to be forgiven of your
sins and receive the promise of eternal life in heaven?
Do you want to personally know the God who loves
you so much? Are you ready to invite Jesus Christ to be your Savior and Master (leader of your life) and have a
relationship (not a religion) with Him?

If your sincere answer is YES, that is wonderful. So now it's time to do business with God. And the way
to do that is by praying to Him.

There is no official prayer of salvation, but the following prayer is a good example to follow. What matters is that
you pray to God
genuinely, from your heart. 

Dear Lord Jesus,
I know I am a sinner in need of your forgiveness. I believe You loved me so much You died on the cross to take
the punishment I deserve for my sins. I believe you rose from the grave and conquered death to give eternal life
to all who sincerely trust in You. Right now I confess my sins, including those that come to mind ______. I turn
away from my sins and ask for your forgiveness that you offer through your precious blood shed on the cross.
I open the door of my heart and life to you. Jesus, be my Savior and Master. I choose to follow You. Thank you,
Jesus, for Your gift of eternal life. Thank you for saving me and making me your child. In Jesus' name I pray, Amen.

If you just prayed...

If you just honestly prayed, Jesus Christ has taken residence in your heart!
You have been born again.
We celebrate with you! Your decision to follow Christ means God has forgiven you and that you will spend eternity
in heaven.
The Bible says:

"If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness."
--1 John 1:9
"Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!"
-- 2 Corinthians 5:17

Receiving Christ into your heart means you have become a child of God. You have the privilege of talking to Him
in prayer at any time about anything. The Christian life is a personal relationship with God through Jesus Christ.
And best of all, it is a relationship that will last for all eternity. Joyfully receive it! Joyfully live it!

Now what? Your next steps as a brand new Christian

1. Watch the short video below by Pastor Greg Laurie
to learn 4 steps to spiritual growth.
Do you have a Bible? Get a free Bible mailed to you here. You can also download a free Bible app.

2) Get answers to Top 10 questions by new Christ-followers. See 10 Principles for New Christians.

Topics covered: Daily Bible Reading, Faith, Evangelism, Prayer, Warfare, Fellowship, Giving Thanks, Water Baptism,
Giving to God and Troubleshooting.

3) Visit our
Home Page for links, apps + and audio and video resources to help you learn and grow.

This page includes excerpts from, an outreach of Harvest Christian Fellowship and Pastor Greg Laurie, Riverside, CA.