I am completely for any person's freedom to profess any religion or to be an atheist or agnostic. A half of my life I was an atheist and the other half of my life I was a believer. Comparing religion with atheism and agnosticism, I think that atheism and agnosticism are appealing to intellectual people because they appear to be very logical, scientific, and thoughtful. However, atheism and agnosticism have a very serious shortage. They are completely powerless before death. They are unable to give hope and comfort to dying people. Neither can they give hope and comfort to people who lost their loved ones. This is why atheists and agnostics prefer not to think about death at all. I heard and read many stories of agnostics and atheists who began to pray to God when they were in a dangerous situation or when their loved ones were very sick. However, they forgot about God as soon as the dangerous situation was over.When atheists and agnostics lose their loved ones, they are able only to grieve because they do not have any hope. It was my experience when my grandmother died many years ago. She was an atheist and I was an atheist at that time. To me, her death was the end. I experienced a very strong grief and sadness after she died.
However, for born-again Christians, the situation is completely different. In 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18, Paul wrote (NKJV):
13 But I do not want you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning those who have fallen asleep, lest you sorrow as others who have no hope.Unlike atheists and agnostics, born-again Christians believe that they will meet their dead born-again loved ones and that they are with Christ now. This has been my experience after my mother's recent death. I am a born-again Christian and she was too. I believe that she is with Christ now and that I will meet her again. So, I grieve much less than I grieved after my grandmother's death.
14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so God will bring with Him those who sleep in Jesus.
15 For this we say to you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord will by no means precede those who are asleep.
16 For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first.
17 Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord.
18 Therefore comfort one another with these words.
I entitled this post "Roman Road" to Salvation. "Roman road" to salvation is a method of evangelism when all the biblical verses are taken from the New Testament epistle to Romans. There are many variants of "the Roman road". Below, I am posting one of them. Please notice that I post it only for the people who have questions: "How can I be saved? How can I go to heaven? How can I be born again?" I do not encourage anyone to join any church. I am not a member of any church or religious group myself. I do not ask you to receive Christ if you do not want to. This is completely your choice.The first verse of "Roman road" to salvation is Romans 3:23 (NKJV):
For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.We all have sinned. There is no one who is without sin. We all have done something unpleasant to God in our life. Romans 3:10-18 (NKJV) describe some of the sins people do in their life:
10 As it is written: "There is none righteous, no, not one;The second verse of "the Roman road", Romans 6:23 (NKJV) reveals the result of sin:
11 there is none who understands; there is none who seeks after God.
12 They have all turned aside; they have together become unprofitable; there is none who does good, no, not one."
13 "Their throat is an open tomb; with their tongues they have practiced deceit"; "The poison of asps is under their lips";
14 "Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness."
15 "Their feet are swift to shed blood;
16 destruction and misery are in their ways;
17 and the way of peace they have not known."
18 "There is no fear of God before their eyes."
For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.The wages of sin is death: both physical and spiritual.
The third verse is Romans 5:8 (NKJV):
But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.Jesus Christ died for us. His death paid for our sins. His resurrection confirms that God received His death as redemption for our sins.
The fourth "station" at "the Roman road" is Romans 10:9-10 (NKJV):
9 That if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.Due to Christ's death, all we need to do for salvation is just to believe in Him and His redeeming sacrifice. In Romans 10:13 (NKJV), it is said:
10 For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.
For "whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved."Jesus died in order to bear the punishment for our sins and to save us from the eternal death. Salvation and forgiveness of sins are available for everyone who believes in Christ as their Savior and Lord.
The fifth verse of "the Roman road", Romans 5:1 (NKJV) says about the result of salvation:
Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.Through Jesus Christ we may receive peace with God. In Romans 8:1 (NKJV), it is written:
There is therefore no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus.Due to Christ's death for us, we will never be condemned for our sins.
The last point is the promise in Romans 8:38-39 (NKJV):
38 For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come,If you want to take "the Roman road" to salvation, you can pray to receive Christ as your Savior. In order to be saved, you need not only to pray, but also to believe in Christ as your Savior in your heart. The prayer may be like this:
39 nor height nor depth, not any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
God, I know that I am a sinner and deserve punishment. However, Jesus bore punishment for me so that I may be saved through my faith in Him. I receive Jesus Christ as my Savior who died for my sins. Thank you for Your mercy and forgiveness. Thank you for Your gift of the eternal life. Amen.