A special note - Chris' online church/ministry (http://chriswaug5.wix.com/sermons) is no longer live. At the moment, the following link features Sunday morning messages -
If you are interested in becoming a Christian right away, please go to chapter 41 of the PDF at the bottom of this page.)
(The following is an introduction to the free PDF file book at the bottom of this page.)
Like the apostle Paul’s harsh words to the Corinthian church, my introduction has harsh words for churches of today. But, please continue reading, and don't give up on me.
If you’re like me, you have definitely heard the unsaved proclaim, “There are too many hypocrites in the church.” Some of the most immoral people I have known over the years claim to be Christians, so what went wrong? Through the guidance of the Holy Spirit, this book seeks to answer this question by solving the issues that have dominated the Christian church far too long.
The world can do without another sermon and book deeming repentance, discipleship, and Jesus’ Lordship as evil. I have also experienced first-hand “religious” bullies campaign against the tireless efforts of the late Dr. Billy Graham, all the while wishing that I could stand up for him. The sermons and writings of Billy Graham have been a wealth of information to me over the years, but as I study their descriptions of repentance, discipleship, and Jesus’ Lordship, I see how their critics are quick to degrade them. Not only would I like to shed light on these teachings, but I believe the Holy Spirit has gifted me with the ability to biblically and clearly break down repentance, discipleship, and Jesus’ Lordship and their relation to Jesus’ work on the cross and His resurrection in a way that, to my knowledge, hasn’t ever been explained. Readers craving detail and hungry for answers should be blessed by what the Lord has revealed. I desperately needed a book like this when I was young in the faith. It would have saved me many grueling, strenuous years of study. For example, my passion to this day is to see people receive Christ, but presenting the gospel has been a major challenge for me, especially knowing that people are lurking around ready to condemn me for witnessing incorrectly. (Although, I’m thankful for those trials - Romans 8:28.) Chapters 26-33 of this book were produced as a result, and I believe they will be a valuable tool in helping Christians witness in various situations and silence critics ready to condemn.
There have been Christian books over the years that have literally been lifesavers, but you’re getting ready to see what makes this book particularly unique. Many books have similar statements such as, “You need to be willing to yield your will to follow and serve Jesus; there needs to be a total surrender and commitment of your life to Him.” Also, that is usually all the explanation you get. I have spent many painstaking hours trying to understand statements like that and how to apply them. If you can relate to this, your mind should now be at ease.
The vision of this book is to save the reader time and avoid guess work. An example of this from chapter one is, “Even though you may already have your mind made up, chapters 6 and 7 of this book give biblical evidence that an unsaved person needs to be willing to begin following (imitating and obeying) Jesus after they pray or make a decision to become a Christian, if they want to become a Christian. (For an example of how to follow Jesus, see chapter 39 of this book.) Please notice that I “did not” say that after an unsaved person follows Jesus, they become a Christian. An unsaved person needs to be consciously or unconsciously (see the 6th point of chapter 6 of this book for more explanations) “ready and willing” to begin following Jesus (for the rest of their life) after they pray or make a decision to become a Christian, then their heart is prepared to receive Jesus (explained in chapters 16 and 8 of this book) and be saved by asking Jesus into their heart, believing that Jesus is their Savior, or trusting Jesus' death on the cross and His shed blood to erase their sins and let them into heaven and believing He arose from the dead, etc. There is a big difference.”
This book also doesn’t make final statements such as, “Now that you’re a Christian, your new life is identified by love and service for others.” Instead, readers get statements such as this from chapter nine after they have prayed to accept Jesus as their Savior, “Weeks, months, and years after you have trusted Jesus’ shed blood to erase your sins and believed He arose from the dead, you should "Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates (not really saved)?" (2 Corinthians 13:5). If you try to and are increasingly able to live the way the previous paragraphs explained, you will have examined yourself, and you will have passed the test! Many, very important Bible verses will apply to you if you are living this way.”
Another convenient example from this book is the following paragraph from chapter one:
“Obviously, actions such as lying, stealing, and killing are sins (The 10 Commandments), and if we have broken one, we are guilty of all (James 2:10). In spite of this, it is also a sin when someone spends their time, other than work or school, etc., “doing” things that do not involve God instead of “doing” the type of things explained in chapter 39 of this book. It seems that multitudes believe they can get saved and continue to live the same way they always have, with the exception of going to church every Sunday morning. Although, the Bible doesn't teach that. (Galatians 5:24-25, "And they that are Christ's (going to heaven) have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts (loving to and wanting to sin). If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.") (Galatians 6:8, "For he that soweth to his flesh (spends their time “doing” things that do not involve God) shall of the flesh reap corruption (go to hell); but he that soweth to the Spirit (spends their time each day “doing” the type of things explained in chapter 39 of this book) shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting (go to heaven).") When someone is "born again" or is a "new" creature in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17), they will spend their time differently than they did before they were "born again" or a "new" creature in Christ. There will be a big change over time.”
Instead of getting a general explanation for ‘he that soweth to the Spirit’, you’re able to have a clear understanding of what it’s referring to. (spends their time each day “doing” the type of things explained in chapter 39 of this book) References to chapters like this are a recurring theme and can definitely come in handy.
One of the major themes of this book is assurance of salvation. For those young in the faith or don’t possess a lot of biblical knowledge, the Bible can be very confusing. For example, if a professing Christian is reading chapter eighteen and discovers they have been consistently guilty of several sins listed in Ephesians 5:1–7, even though they’ve made a decision to accept Christ as their Savior, they may ask, “Does this mean I’m not really a Christian?” This is where being directed to chapter ten will help.
I've heard people say things such as, "I believe in Jesus and have prayed to become a Christian, but I'm not a Christian." Another example is, "I went forward in a church service to get saved and have been baptized, but I don't live like a Christian."
Basically, people like this believed Jesus was their Savior, but they didn't repent or had no desire to stop committing sins on purpose after they told God that they believed Jesus was their Savior. As a result, their hearts weren't prepared to receive Jesus. (For information on this, see chapters 1-9 of this book.)
Tragically, people like this are promised by pastors that they are going to heaven. Instead of reading 1 John or material that’s covered in chapter 10 of this book, their assurance of salvation came from the fact that they prayed a prayer years ago, even if their sinful lifestyles basically remained. So, when people like the ones explained in the two previous paragraphs know deep down that they aren't really Christians, they think back to pastors promising them that they are going to heaven because they prayed or made decisions to accept Jesus as their Savior or trusted Jesus' shed blood to give them salvation.
There're pastors who strongly oppose people praying or making decisions to become Christians the second time. So, when people who aren't really Christians continue to sin, and are told by pastors that they shouldn't worry and that it's no big deal, the people believe the pastors' words. The truth is, that these people will never be able to break their sinful lifestyles, because they have no power or ability to do so (See Romans 6:1-23). If someone has prayed or made a decision to become a Christian, and they are able to give up their sins more and more overtime, they gain assurance that they have really become a Christian (Romans 6:1-23). Pastors who are against this, need to correct themselves.
Therefore, if these people don't pray or make decisions to become Christians the second time, they aren't going to heaven, because they didn't become Christians the first time they made decisions to do so. In the Bible, it's clear that Demas, who served with the apostle Paul but later went back to his old lifestyle, made a decision to become a Christian, but didn't go to heaven unless he made a decision to become a Christian again (2 Timothy 4:10).
People may claim, “You don’t have read a book in order to know how to become a Christian; reading a gospel tract will suffice.” I agree that gospel tracts have seemed to have led many to the Lord and come in handy, but you don’t have to read this entire book to understand how to become a Christian either; a quick turn to chapter 9 of this book will explain this. A downfall to gospel tracts; however, is that a general explanation doesn’t work for everyone. For example, I’m confident that the Rich Young Man in Mark 10:17-25 would have easily made a decision to believe that Jesus was his Savior if he read a general gospel tract from today. If you read point number 1 of chapter 6 of this book, you should see that everyone’s heart isn’t equally prepared to receive Jesus as their Savior, and as a result, the message Christians should present to non-Christians should be directed at preparing their hearts to truly receive Jesus. Chapters 26-33 of this book provide practical outlines that Christians can use to help meet this all-important goal.
Simply put, this book should give you complete understandings of the most crucial Bible topics. The Christian community and those seeking true purpose will appreciate this fresh, new take God wants to present. We all learn differently, and this book seeks to take everyone by the hand and lead.
It is my prayer that through these pages you will find the answers to the issues that need to be resolved and have full assurance of your salvation. May God greatly bless you with biblical knowledge and give you the ability to take Jesus’ message to this lost and dying world that has drifted far from the Bible. If you are interested in becoming a Christian right now, please see chapter 9 or 41 of this book. Also, if you belong to a church that uses conformation, you should be able to benefit from the message in this book as well. Another note before you begin reading is that when you see the term ‘saved’, it’s referring to someone who is a Christian or needs to become a Christian, etc.
This book’s message has a lot to say about your personal walk with the Lord and how to know you are going to heaven. Trying to figure out if those who have passed on made it to heaven can be confusing, especially if they prayed or made decisions to become Christians but weren’t very successful at living the Christian lifestyle or abandoned the Christian lifestyle at some time. Concluding that these people didn’t go heaven isn’t the right mindset to have. First John 5:16-17 implies that some Christians die early because they fail to repent of certain sins, and as a result, God ends their lives early. These Christians still go to heaven, though (Jude 1:24). God ends their lives to keep other Christians from being persuaded to sin in those ways (Acts 5:1-11; 1 Corinthians 5:5-7; 11:30). So, don’t worry about these things; instead, be concerned with how the Bible teaches that Christians living now should live.
Before diving into this book’s chapters, the following are five important and dominate takeaways - Other than explaining how we can become Christians, live the Christian lifestyle, and gain assurance of our salvation, this book biblically tackles the sometimes gleeful, proud, popular, and false notion that a person will go to hell if they try to explain to someone how they can become a Christian and mention anything other than that they must believe that Jesus died on the cross for their sins, was buried, and arose from the dead. This book also explains the all-important difference between earning your salvation and biblical repentance.
In order to read this book, click the PDF icon below, click open, and scroll down the pages.