A Message from Billy Graham
When my two sons were little, I was walking along the road with one of them, and we stepped on an anthill. We looked down and there were a lot of little ants crawling around. Some of them were wounded, many of them had died, and my son said, “Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could go down and help those ants rebuild their little house that we destroyed?” I said, “It would, but we’re too big and they’re too little! We couldn’t communicate with them.”
He thought about that a moment, then I tried to give him a spiritual lesson from the Bible. I said, “God looked at us, and we were just little ants crawling around on this little dust out here in space called the ‘earth.’ And God wanted to communicate with us that He loved us, that He was willing to pay a price in order for us to be saved to spend eternity with Him, and to change our lives here and give direction to us, and bring a joy and a peace and a happiness to our lives.”
You know what God did? He did something about our trouble. He did not turn His back on us in our time of need. God became a man. The prophet Isaiah said, “Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and will call Him Immanuel”[which means “God with us”] (Isaiah 7:14). And that’s who Jesus Christ was—the Son of the Living God, born of the virgin Mary. Christ’s coming in the flesh—His invading the world, His identifying Himself with sinful men and women—His incarnation, His being born in human flesh—is the most significant fact of history.
He came to the world, once and for all, that we might forever know that He had an absorbing interest in the way we live, the way we believe and the way we die. He came to demonstrate to us that God and mankind belong together. He came to mankind to mend the gap and fill the gulf that separated the creature from the Creator.
The moment that we are born, we have a tendency to sin. You see, we don’t have to be taught to sin; we inherit the disease of sin. God said that the whole world is guilty of sin (see Romans 3:23). All have broken the moral law. “As it is written: ‘There is no one righteous, not even one’”(Romans 3:10). God will not tolerate sin. He condemns it and demands payment for it. God could not remain a righteous God and compromise with sin. His holiness and His justice demand the death penalty. In other words, we will suffer judgment unless we repent. The word repentancemeans change—to change our minds, to change our way of living. But we can’t do that on our own. Only God can help us.
He sent Jesus to take our sins on the cross. The Bible says that Jesus was made to be sin for us. Think of it, Jesus was without sin, but all our sins were placed on Him. He became guilty of adultery. He became guilty of murder. He became guilty of everything that you and I have ever done or ever thought. “The Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all,” the Scripture says (Isaiah 53:6). First Peter 2:24 says, “He Himself bore our sins in His body on the tree.” Peter says Christ also suffered for sins, the just for the unjust. He took your place and He took my place. I deserve Hell. I deserve to go to the judgment, but I’ll not be there. Don’t look for me because my judgment was taken by Christ on that cross.
Jesus didn’t stay on the cross. They brought Him down from the cross and they buried Him, but on the third day He rose from the dead. He said, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die” (John 11:25–26). The Bible says, “If you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved” (Romans 10:9).Have you done that? Are you sure of it?
The Bible also says that Jesus Christ is coming back to this earth again. Someday we’re going to have universal peace. All the armies and all the armaments will be gone. Christ will reign, and you and I will reign with Him and with the angels of Heaven, if we know Christ.
Christ not only lived in the flesh, but He can live in you. He can be incarnate in your heart. Right now, where you are, you can experience the incarnation of God in the human soul. You can have Christ living in you.
The most astounding fact of all the ages is that the great and almighty God of Heaven can live in your heart. It makes no difference who you are. Your life can be changed if you will humble yourself and let Christ take up residence in your heart.
You say, “How can that be? How can God live in my heart and fill the aching void in my life?” Simply bow your head and pray to God this prayer: “O God, I am a sinner—I turn from my sins—I give them up—I receive You as my Savior. And by faith I ask Jesus Christ to be my Lord and Master.”
You can do this now, wherever you are, and Christ will live in your heart!
When you have made this decision, you will want to do four things that will help you grow in your new relationship with Christ. First, read the Bible every day—God will speak to you through what you read in the Bible. Second, pray every day—set aside some time to speak to God, to share with Him your life, your struggles, your hopes and dreams. Third, tell others about Christ and what He is doing for you. And fourth, regularly attend a Bible-believing church where the Bible is taught, where prayer is a priority, and where Christ’s truths are obeyed.