I want to follow Jesus
To follow Jesus and receive salvation we simply have to put our faith in Him. Romans 10:9 says: “If you declare with your mouth that Jesus is Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” If you are not sure whether you are right with God or you know you want Jesus in your life, then you just need to pray a simple prayer to surrender your life to Him.
Dear Jesus, I’m praying this prayer because I know that I have done wrong by living without You. I am sorry and I trust that You will forgive me. I accept Your love and grace for me and ask that You would be my Lord. Help me believe in You and love You every day, and help me to show the world what You are like and how great Your love is. In Jesus’ name, amen.
Congratulations! To pray these words with faith is the start of the best journey you could ever go on. As Equippers Church we want to help you on this journey following Jesus. Please let us know if you’ve made this decision to follow Jesus by filling out the form below.
When you make the decision to believe in Jesus, choose to turn away from your old ways and follow Him, you are saved – now and for eternity. You’re forgiven and God doesn’t see the wrong things you’ve done. You can boldly approach God and have open relationship with Him.
What do we have to do to receive salvation?
- Accept Jesus’ sacrifice on your behalf.
John 3:16 – “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.”
- Confess your sins.
1 John 1:9 – “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”
- Receive Jesus as your Lord and Saviour.
John 1:12 – “But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name.”
Watch the next five videos to help you get started on this journey of faith. Go through them on your own or with a leader.
Who is God?
We don’t follow a far off, distant God. God is close to us and we can get to know Him personally for ourselves. Let’s look closer at who God is.
GOD IS TRINITY
This is an important foundational truth to understand about God. He is one God who exists in three persons. We call this the Trinity – Father, Son (Jesus Christ), and Holy Spirit.
All three are one God and at the heart of the trinity is relationship. We see in the Bible below that God is talked about as plural – “our image”, but also as singular – “his image”. God is three and He is one.
“Then God said, “’Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness’… So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.” (Genesis 1:26-27 NIV)
All three persons of the trinity are equal and are worthy of equal praise and worship. All three act in complete unity but carry three functions.
It’s important we have a balanced view of God the Father by seeing Him as all of these four aspects.
God is a creator and He created the heavens and the earth from nothing (Genesis 1:1). He created us to know Him, and so we’re created with an awareness of who He is.
“In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth” (Genesis 1:1)
God is the ultimate authority above all and rules heaven and earth. He is a just ruler and a fair judge. God is in control, and is our reference point for building a godly life.
“’He is the God who made the world and everything in it. Since he is Lord of heaven and earth, he doesn’t live in man-made temples,” (Acts 17:24 NLT)
Everything we live with is natural, but God is big and outside of our understanding. God is Omnipresent – everywhere; Omniscient – all knowing; and Omnipotent – all powerful.
“Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory for ever and ever. Amen.” (1 Timothy 1:17)
God is not loving, but is love itself. As our Father He loves us and builds a good future for us. His love gives us identity, shows us our worth, and helps us to love ourselves and others.
“Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.” (James 1:17-18 NIV)
- What have you learnt about God today?
- Which of the four aspects of God the Father do you think of God as the most?
- How can you apply what you’ve learnt to your life?
Who is Jesus?
SON OF GOD
Jesus is the Son of God and He shows us what God is like. He is fully God and fully man. When He was baptised God affirmed Him as His Son and reinforced that Jesus was God and was perfect.
“And a voice from heaven said, ‘This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased.’” (Matthew 3:17 NIV)
WHY DID JESUS COME TO EARTH?
God’s Perfect Design
God created a good world where man lived in perfect relationship with Him and others.
Adam and Eve turned away from God, decided to live life their way, and sin entered the world. Sin is simply falling short of God’s perfect will and we’ve all done this: “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23 NIV). God hates sin because it robs us of His best for our life. He created us and therefore He knows what’s best for our life.
As a result of sin brokenness entered God’s good world and we’re separated from a true, living relationship with God. We can try and deal with the brokenness in different ways on our own but unfortunately as we try to get away from the brokenness it pulls us back in.
We can’t get out of our brokenness on our own, so God stepped in and entered into our brokenness to come for us. Jesus came to earth and lived a perfect life, died for our sins to pay the penalty so we could be forgiven, and rose again to open the door to life and relationship with God. All we have to do is turn to God and believe in Him.
“For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 6:23 NIV)
Recover & Pursue
Because of Jesus, we can recover and pursue God’s design for our lives following Him as Lord. We can get back the relationship with Him and purpose He intended for us.
“This includes you who were once far away from God. You were his enemies, separated from him by your evil thoughts and actions. Yet now he has reconciled you to himself through the death of Christ in his physical body. As a result, he has brought you into his own presence, and you are holy and blameless as you stand before him without a single fault.” (Colossians 1:21-22 NIV)
Saved by Grace
We do not deserve to be in relationship with God and there is nothing we can to do to earn ‘right standing’ with Him. It is only because He loves us and through His grace that we can fully enter into relationship with Him.
“For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.” (Ephesians 2:8 NIV)
Religion spells DO, Christianity spells DONE. Religion requires human effort to be right with God. But Christianity receives what Jesus Christ has already done for us.
STAGES OF SALVATION
God saving us from our brokenness and separation and giving us eternal life is what we call salvation. There are three stages:
Justification is a one off event when we put our faith in Jesus. We’re forgiven for what we’ve done and what we’re going to do, because Jesus died on the cross, and we receive new life.
Sanctification is the ongoing process of becoming more like Jesus. It’s the renewing of our thinking and changing of our behaviour, through the power of the Holy Spirit.
Glorification is one off event in the future when the presence of sin will be removed. Jesus will return and all will be made perfect. This gives us a hope in what’s to come.
- What have you learnt about Jesus today?
- How does it make you feel that God so loved us that He came down from heaven to die for us so that we could have relationship with Him?
- How can you apply what you’ve learnt to your life?
Who is the Holy Spirit?
Who is the Holy Spirit?
The third person of the trinity is the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is God and worthy of equal worship as God the Father and Jesus Christ. The passage below from the Bible describes the creation of the world and right here at the beginning of time we see the Spirit of God present.
“In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters.” (Genesis 1:1-2 NIV)
All through the Bible we see that the Holy Spirit is a person. He acts and responds to God, and we refer to Him as ‘He’ not ‘it’.
What is the Holy Spirit‘s function?
When we are saved the Holy Spirit comes and lives within us and God’s presence is always with us. The Holy Spirit is our helper and He speaks to us and reveals things from God.
“What no eye has seen, what no ear has heard, and what no human mind has conceived” the things God has prepared for those who love him— these are the things God has revealed to us by his Spirit.” (1 Corinthians 2:9-10 NIV)
The Bible says That the Holy Spirit intercedes for us (Romans 8:26-27). This mean He prays for us and helps us to pray. If we don’t know what to pray the Holy Spirit can lead us.
The Holy Spirit is also described as our comforter or counsellor (John 14:26) and He teaches us about God as we read the Bible. It’s the Holy Spirit that guides, leads, and convicts us. Convicts simply means He convinces us of what is good. His power helps us to become more like Jesus and develops the Fruit of the Spirit in us.
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.” (Galatians 5:22-23 NIV)
Baptism in the Holy Spirit and Receiving the Gift of Tongues
Baptism in the Holy Spirit is an important step for every follower of Jesus. It means being filled with the Holy Spirit.
At Salvation: We receive the Holy Spirit.
Baptism of the Holy Spirit: The Holy Spirit receives us.
Speaking in tongues is one of the evidences of being baptised in the Holy Spirit. The gift of tongues is the Holy Spirit praying through us in a heavenly language.
“And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.” (Acts 2:4 NIV)
Benefits of Speaking in Tongues:
“A person who speaks in tongues is strengthened personally” (1 Corinthians 14:4 NIV)
Tongues build up (edify) the person speaking. Speaking in tongues also helps us to pray effectively and accurately. Tongues is our spirit praying (1 Corinthians 14:14).
“For he who speaks in a tongue does not speak to men but to God, for no one understands him, however, in the spirit he speaks mysteries.” (1 Corinthians 14:2 NIV)
We need to desire the Holy Spirit and the gift of tongues in order to receive (1 Corinthians 14:1).
Power for Mission
The Holy Spirit empowers us to live a life of purpose following Jesus and part of this purpose is telling others about what Jesus has done for us.
Jesus told His disciples to wait for His spirit. They couldn’t begin their ministries until they were baptised in the Holy Spirit. Jesus told them that when they become filled with the Holy Spirit, they would receive power to be His witnesses (Acts 1:8).
“But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” (Acts 1:8 NIV)
Just like the disciples, it is through the power of the Spirit that we are able to live on mission and do all that we have been called to. The Holy Spirit gives us the supernatural ability to live the life we are created to live.
- What have you learnt about the Holy Spirit today?
- The fruit of the spirit is the result of a life lived in relationship with God following Jesus. Think about your life, are you becoming more like Jesus in these ways? Ask God to help you develop these characteristics and trust in His power at work within you.
- How can you apply what you’ve learnt to your life?
The next step after salvation is water baptism, which is complete submersion in water.
“Peter replied, ‘Each of you must turn from your sins and turn to God, and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. Then you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.’” (Acts 2:38)
What is Baptism?
Getting water baptised is part of our Christian life. It’s about more than water and taking a public swim! It’s also different to getting baptised in the Holy Spirit or being christened as a child.
Water baptism is not a salvation issue. Nothing can make you ‘more saved’ than you already are. However, there are several powerful experiences (this is one of them) that every Christian needs to do so that they can live their life to their fullest potential.
The word baptism is the English form of a Greek word ‘baptizo’. Baptizo means to immerse, dip, plunge or submerge.
In ancient times it wasn’t a Christian word at all; blacksmiths used it. When they wanted to cool something they had been forging (like a steel or bronze sword by heating it and hammering it) they would plunge it into cool water – baptising it!
Jesus came and told his disciples, “I have been given complete authority in heaven and on earth. Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” (Matthew 28:18-20)
God has a high value on baptism. This is because it is a sign of us making public our alliance with God and choosing to live life His way.
What is the meaning of ‘Baptism’?
Water Baptism is an outward sign or symbol that reinforces our inward (internal) experience of salvation. It is a public declaration of our relationship with Jesus, an outward declaration of an inward decision.
“For you were buried with Christ when you were baptised. And with him you were raised to new life because you trusted the mighty power of God, who raised Christ from the dead.” (Col 2:12-13)
What does Baptism represent?
Baptism can be explained as a bath, a burial, and a beginning. It’s a symbolic act identifying with Jesus’ death, burial and resurrection.
“We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life. For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we will certainly also be united with him in a resurrection like his.” (Romans 6:4-5 NIV)
When you are immersed under the water, it’s symbolic of you dying and being buried – representing that you are dead to your old life. When you come up it’s as if you are being born again and starting a new life with Jesus – a beginning.
The water also symbolises cleansing – like a bath – Jesus has washed away your sin.
“But if we confess our sins to God, He can always be trusted to forgive us and take our sins away.” (1 John 1:9)
It’s acknowledging the transformation within you, washing away the old and entering new life.
- What have you learnt about baptism today?
- Have you been baptised? If not, consider taking this step of faith.
We want to connect with God to grow and develop our relationship with Him. He is a relational God and wants to know us personally. The Bible says as we draw near to Him, He draws near to us (James 4:8).
There’s some great habits to build into our lives to help us connect to God.
- Reading the Bible
Prayer is simply conversation between us and God. It’s often thought about as talking to God but if we want to connect it needs to be two way and so we need to listen.
“In the morning, LORD, you hear my voice; in the morning I lay my requests before you and wait expectantly”. (Psalm 5:3 NIV)
Starting out with prayer can feel awkward so a routine and plan can help.
- Adoration – Praising God for who He is.
- Thanksgiving – Thanking God for what He has done.
- Confession – Asking for forgiveness for our mistakes.
- Supplication/Asking – Making requests in faith.
- Intercession – Standing in the gap for others.
- Meditation/Listening – Reflecting on a scripture or on God and listening.
We believe the word is God breathed and divinely inspired, and so it’s still relevant to us today. We encourage every believer to daily read the Bible as it’s one of the most common ways God speaks to us.
“The grass withers and the flowers fade but the word of the Lord endures forever.” (1 Peter 1:24-25 NIV)
The word of God is alive and powerful.
“For the word of God is alive and powerful. It is sharper than the sharpest two-edged sword, cutting between soul and spirit, between joint and marrow. It exposes our innermost thoughts and desires.” (Hebrews 4:12 NIV)
The word of God guides us.
“Your word is a lamp to guide my feet and a light for my path.” (Psalms 119:105 NIV)
The word of God sustains us.
“But Jesus told him, “No! The Scriptures say, ‘People do not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.” (Matthew 4:4 NIV)
Some keys to make reading the Bible easier:
1. Pick a version of the Bible that is easy to read.
We suggest starting with the New Living Translation (NLT).
2. You don’t have to start at the beginning.
The Bible is made up of 66 separate books compiled together into two sections. The Old Testament is the story of God and his people before Jesus came. The New Testament starts with the birth of Jesus and then the journey of the disciples.
3. Pick a book of the Bible and work your way through it.
The book of John is a good place to start. John was one of the closest disciples to Jesus and the book of John is his account of Jesus time on earth.
4. Read a little every day.
Set some time aside every day, even if starting out you set 5 or 10 minutes aside to read. Don't be in a rush to read through it but take you time to consider and think about what it is saying. Pick a time and place that works for you and that you enjoy.
5. Pray before you begin.
Take a second before you start reading to ask God to help you understand what he is teaching you through to scriptures.
6. Write it down.
As you read the Bible write down key parts the stand out to you and any observations you make. A great template to use is S.O.A.P.
S – Scripture
Choose a scripture of two that stood out to you and write it down.
O – Observation
Ask yourself what do you thinking God is trying to teach you?
Note down any observations you make that stand out to you.
A – Application
Ask yourself how does what you have read apply to your life?
P – Prayer
This is where you pray to God perhaps asking him to help apply his word to your life or even for greater understanding. Remember to take a moment to listen to God also.
People everywhere love relationships. We love to have friends that look out for us and who we can look out for.
Being a Christian is no different. It’s all about relationship. Firstly with God, but then also with other people. The Bible describes the church as ‘the hope of the world’. That’s because church is designed to be a place where people can come in and hear about Jesus, but also because it’s supposed to be the place that people can find the friendship, accountability and encouragement that they’re looking for in life.
Church is simply a whole lot of friends challenging one another to go higher in God.
We can try to find that feeling of community and belonging through all kinds of things, but the church is the absolute best place for this because we all share the same faith in Jesus and are all on a journey, working towards becoming more like Him. It’s so great to know that you have a place to go where you’ll get the challenge and inspiration that you need to help tell other people about what God has done in your life. It’s rewarding to know that you can be a part of it all and that God can use your gifts and skills to help the church grow. It’s exciting to know that there is an environment you can come into every week where people will be praising God and you can join in!
“He makes the whole body fit together perfectly. As each part does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow, so that the whole body is healthy and growing and full of love.” (Ephesians 4:16)
Remember, we’re not designed to do life alone. Gathering with the church will help you keep pursuing God. An ember out of the fire on its own will go cold. If you’re not already connected to a local church we encourage you to be part of one.
- What have you learnt today about the following God?
- How are you going with these habits? Is there an area you want to grow in?
- How can you apply what you’ve learnt to your life?