Ticket to Heaven: What Belief in Jesus Actually Means

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It is an oversimplification to say that one only needs to “believe in Jesus” to get a guaranteed ticket to heaven. In this article, we’ll go beyond mere words to define what belief in Jesus and being saved really means.

More than words: Defining belief in Jesus

Some people have wrongly been given the idea that Christians only have to say they believe in Jesus and they’ve acquired admission to heaven.

This oversimplification is often a product of a too literal interpretation of the following verse, probably the most popular and well-known of the New Testament:

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.”

–John 3:16

While true in principle, avoiding the devil comes in the details. What needs to be defined is what a belief in Jesus actually is – and it is more than mere words.

The devil believes in and knows God and Jesus. But the Bible tells us, Satan isn’t going to heaven. Far from it. And neither are his demons.

“You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe—and shudder!”

–James 2:19

Living out your belief

“But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.”

–James 1:22

Belief, therefore, is much more than saying you believe. It is depth of faith and a true dedication to God and Christ. It is about an incredible magnitude of love of God, Jesus Christ and your fellow human beings.

Additionally, belief in Christ is a belief in His words. And as we’ve heard the saying “actions speak louder than words,” we must also demonstrate our belief in Christ in how we think, speak and act. We must live our belief in Christ. We need to be a living example of his words.

“Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children. And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.”

–Ephesians 5:1-2

What believing in Jesus isn’t

It also helps to understand what believing in Christ isn’t an order to help define what it means to believe in Jesus.

A believer in Christ isn’t someone who will go against His and the Bible’s teachings. Once you learn what is considered sinful, you can’t go on living the way you always have before coming to Christ and continuing to commit sins. Believing in Jesus isn’t about your old life – it’s about accepting a new life and new way of living in Christ.

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.”

–2 Corinthians 5:17

Sharing your belief

“And he said to them, ‘Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.'”

–Mark 16:15-16

The next proof of belief is sharing that belief. Sharing your joy and telling others of the benefits of having Christ in your heart. It’s about making time to encourage others to learn about Christ. It’s about your knowledge of Christ to teach the gospel to others or to direct them to inspirational teachers.

Jesus is the ticket to heaven

“Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”

–John 14:6

Jesus is the ticket to heaven, as he explains in the above verse. But mere words won’t get you there. There are no deeds alone that will get you there. It is a combination of faith and living out your faith, through a depth in the mind and the heart that only God/Christ can perceive. It is only God/ who can know the belief in Jesus as the son of God, the source of truth and the Redeemer who gives eternal salvation through God’s grace.

Seek and you shall find Christ

“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.”

– Matthew 7:7

An old saying says “trust but verify.” If you are a person who needs facts to believe something, the evidence for Christ is there for those who will put forth the effort to look.

Jesus said: “Seek and you shall find.” If you want to believe in Christ, seek Christ. Study the Bible. Study history. You will find the evidence that connects the dots of Christ’s existence, the eyewitness accounts of his life, death and resurrection. You’ll find the prophecies of his life and death hundreds of years in advance in the Old Testament.

Belief does not have to be blind. God said to the prophet Jeremiah:

“You will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart.”

– Jeremiah 29:13