The Testimony of Mandy Nelson
If you died today where would you spend eternity? Up until February 4, 2004, I dreaded hearing this question. Why? I was a member of a good church that preached the true gospel from the Bible. (Acts 20:21, “Testifying both to the Jews, and also to the Greeks, repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ.”) I was doing my best to live a righteous life (only listening to gospel and classical music, attending church three times a week plus Sunday School once a week, teaching Children’s Church, working in the nursery, working on the church cleaning crew, taking care of the missionary prayer list, and reading my Bible and praying to God daily) yet I knew something was missing (Isaiah 64:6, “But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.) The truth is, I was lost. I never came to God on His terms. I made a profession of salvation two years previously, and cleaned up my life, but inside I was empty and dirty (Matthew 23:26, “…cleanse first that which is within the cup and platter, that the outside of them may be clean also.”). I had never repented of my sins. I had never made that 180 degree turn from my sinful way to God’s perfect, sinless way. I wanted to avoid Hell, but keep control of my life, and that is not repentance. God was faithful, patient, and merciful in continuing to show me I was religious but lost (2 Peter 3:9, “The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.”). The Bible teaches that there is a day of salvation (2 Corinthians 6:2, “…behold, now is the accepted time; behold now is the day of salvation.”). I knew on February 4, 2004 that the living God was convicting me and that I needed to be saved. If God is working on your heart right now PLEASE DON’T RESIST. This could be your last chance (Proverbs 27:1, “Boast not thyself of to morrow; for thou knowest not what a day may bring forth.”).
The first step to salvation is repentance. Turn and forsake your sins. Give up all to the control of Christ (Philippians 3:8, “…I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ,”).
The second step is faith. One can’t just believe Christ existed (James 2:19, “Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble.”). Neither can one believe Christ died on the cross to save them with His sinless blood, but they must add their own righteousness or works (i.e. baptism, confirmation, good deeds) in order to complete their salvation. Christ paid it ALL (Ephesians 2:8-9, “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.”). Salvation is God’s gift to you, but you must PERSONALLY receive God’s free gift. On the cross Jesus said, “It is finished”, He is the only way of salvation. (John 14:6, “Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”).
You must call on the Lord Jesus Christ to save you (Romans 10:9, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.”) If you do this God will make you a new creature (2 Corinthians 5:17, “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.”). Don’t wait until it is to late, Hell is real (Luke 16:23, “And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom.”). The only way to avoid Hell is to be saved (John 3:3, “Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, Verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he CANNOT see the kingdom of God.”).