Are you lost? Hurting? Searching? Alone? Find out how you can come into your own personal relationship with Jesus Christ and be helped by Him.
JESUS ANDTHE GOSPEL
We need Jesus
There’s a whole lot more to people than meets the eye. And behind our smiles and appearances, we each experience pain and struggles at different times in our lives that leave lasting impressions and negative consequences.
Though we might try to cover up or fix our problems, often they never go away – or they get worse. Being alone in our sorrows is a very hard place to be.
is the answer
God promises to drastically help us if we are prepared to hand our lives back over to Him through Jesus. Jesus is our living and breathing contact Person in God, and He alone is the one who can bring us back to God and put all things right in our lives.
Our value and worth to Jesus are beyond human understanding. He knows and understands each one of us better than we could ever know ourselves. Jesus is gentle, loving and full of compassion for us. He knows the realities, temptations and sorrows of life, having lived on earth in the form of a human being.
His invitation to everyone is: “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28).
Jesus and the gospel
Here are key truths you shouldn’t miss about who Jesus is and what He’s done on your behalf.
Jesus Christ is one of the three persons who make up our triune God (God the Father, God the Son and the Holy Spirit). Jesus is also known as God the Son, though this is just a title, it does not mean He was created. God is without beginning and end!
Key truth: “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end” (Revelation 22:13).
Jesus the peace-maker
The world we live in is cursed because of everyone’s rebellion and sin against God. Our relationship with God has been wrecked because of our ways. God has anger towards us because of our sins. We deserve death because of our crimes against Him.
But because of His love for us, God also has a plan in action to rescue us from our sins and restore our relationship with Him. This plan involved Jesus stepping into human history and doing peace-work on our behalf. This peace-work is known as the gospel.
Key truth: “For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus” (1 Timothy 2:5).
Jesus’ peace-work (the gospel)
Jesus temporarily left heaven and came to earth incarnated as a man 2,000 years ago. At the end of His life on earth, Jesus suffered a criminal’s death by being nailed to a wooden cross.
God used this horrendous act for a greater good in His plan. God placed all the sins of the world on Jesus as he hung on the cross and punished Him in our place. You see, because Jesus lived a perfect life on earth without ever sinning – Jesus’ death could qualify as a substitute for ours.
Three days after Jesus died, he rose from the dead. His resurrection is our proof that Jesus is God, and that His death is God’s way of both punishing all sin and offering us His mercy, forgiveness and righteousness.
Key truth: “For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” 2 Corinthians 5:21
Respond to Jesus
If you choose to believe that Jesus died on your behalf, you will get a personal pardon from God for your sins. You will be made right with Him for eternity.
Please know that God says there is no sin that is too big for Him to forgive – except the sin of not believing Him! Jesus says, “Therefore I tell you, every sin and blasphemy will be forgiven people, but the blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven” (Matthew 12:31).
as you are
There is nothing else you have to do in order to get right with God. Some people wrongly think that they have to clean themselves up, that baptism will remove their sins, or they must do other religious things before God will accept them. No!
God is not interested in anything we do but only in us believing in the finished work of Jesus. God says, “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” (Ephesians 2:8-9).
Let us guide you through how to respond to Jesus and get right with God.
1. Repent of your sins
God tells us that everybody falls short of His standards, even those who we might consider “model citizens.” God’s righteous punishment for sinning is eternal death in hell.
God wants to help you! He asks that you repent of your sins. This means that you take ownership of your sins, without blameshifting; and agree with God that your sins are wrong and you want to turn away from them.
Key truth: “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).
2. Believe in Jesus
Next, you must believe the truth that Jesus died in your place to pay the penalty for your sins. You must also believe that God raised Him from the dead.
Key truth: “For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures” (1 Corinthians 15:3-4).
3. Call out to Jesus
Finally, you must call out to Jesus and admit you are a sinner. Tell Him you believe He died in your place and rose again, and that you want His pardon.
In that moment God promises to set you free from your sins and remember them no more. You will be clean in His eyes.
Key truth: “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved” (Romans 10:13).
Life with Jesus
Deciding to get right with God is the start of huge, wonderful, change. Jesus will take control of your life and send the Holy Spirit to live in your heart. You will never be alone again – God will be your constant companion for your life journey until He brings you home to Him in heaven.
Through Jesus, God will begin working out His plan for your life. He’ll give you guidance and direct your steps, and over time you’ll see that the old things that hurt you, trapped you or defined you – will lose their grip and fall away.
You will experience God’s Fatherly love, patience, and kindness towards you. Life will become so much richer and fuller the more you lean in and get to know God through Jesus.
Finally, it’s important to know that sometimes God might allow very difficult circumstances in your life – but He uses these in order to bring about a greater good for you. You can trust His good heart towards you and you can rely on His power to help you in the good times and the bad.
The two most important ways of communicating with God is by reading the Bible (His means of communicating with you) and praying (you talking to God).
Reading the Bible
The Bible contains the very words from God, delivered to us by God’s chosen writers. Through reading the Bible God will not only show you more of who He is, but He’ll also communicate with you, teach you, and feed truth to your soul.
Know that a well-nourished soul brings growth and change in your life! This is because God uses the truths in the Bible to change our thinking to be more like His. And once your thinking starts to change, your feelings, preferences, and actions will begin to evolve too.
Key truth: “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work” (2 Timothy 3:16-17).
God eagerly wants you to talk to Him as you go about your day, as well as during alone time with Him. He promises to always be attentive when you speak to Him.
God loves it when you offer praise and gratitude to Him, but He also wants you to share with Him the heavies in your life, and what’s causing you to feel anxious so that He may give you His peace.
It’s also important to admit to God when you mess up and sin. Though Jesus paid the debt for all sins by His death on the cross, God calls for you to have a transparent life where you take responsbility for your thoughts and actions. He’ll never drop you or condemn you, but instead He promises to forgive you, cleanse you, and patiently show you a better way.
God also encourages you to ask Him for wisdom when you do face tough circumstances, for He promises to help you see the situation clearly.
Key truth: “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you” (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18).
Here is our list of top resources every new follower of Jesus should know about.
Free online Bible
This is YouVersion, providing you free access to the Bible on the internet. YouVersion allows you to view different translations of the Bible. We recommend the English Standard Version (ESV) for ease of use.
Teaching notes to complement your Bible reading
Biblehub provides a variety of awesome notes and commentaries to help you get the most out of your Bible reading.
Answers to thousands of Bible-related questions
GotQuestions is an awesome resource giving you access to thousands of Q&As to do with the Bible. Great for you if you are new to the Bible.
Get connected with other local people who know Jesus! Here are local Bible-preaching churches for the Des Moines area where you can worship God, grow as a Christian, discover fellowship and support, and find a place to call home. A warm welcome awaits you.
Saylorville Church, 6429 NW 6th Dr, Des Moines, 50313
Contact pastor: Chuck De Cleene
Lakeside Fellowship, 1121 W Bridge Rd, Polk City, IA 50226
Contact pastor: Dave Heisterkamp
Living Waters Fellowship, 2929 SE 22nd St, Des Moines, IA 50320