Do we need to accept Jesus and follow His commands to receive eternal life?

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Juan, via email asked me a great question; “Do we just need to accept Jesus and follow His commands so to be saved and ready to receive eternal life?”

The answer to Juan’s question has two parts to it; good news and bad news. I am going to let you know both the good news and the bad news starting with the bad news.

The bad news is that God wants His commandments followed perfectly all the time. Yet no one can follow God’s commandments the way God wants them followed because everyone, including you and me, are not perfect. Because you and I are not perfect, we will always fall short and fail at following God’s commandments; no exceptions with people like you and me. Romans 3:23 “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. To make the point of you and me not being able to perfectly keep God’s commandments, God told us that if we break any one commandment, that we have in fact broken them all. James 2:8-15

It is easy for me to look at my past and present and see clearly that I have and currently do at times, knowingly break God’s commandments. I’m sure if you honestly look at your past and present you too see yourself knowingly breaking God’s commandments. I also know that no matter how hard I try, that there will be more times in the future that I will break God’s commandments. If you are honest with yourself, you will know this of your future too.

You and me knowingly breaking God’s commandments is our sinning (knowingly doing something we know we should not do AND/OR knowingly not doing something we know we should do). God has informed us that the wages of sin is death. Romans 6:23

So the bad news is that there is no way either you or me can follow and keep God’s commandments and we owe our life to God for our sinning and God knows that you and I cannot keep His commandments because we could only keep them if we were perfect, which we are not.

Even worse news is that you and I don’t have anything at all to give God as payment for the wages we owe Him because everything, absolutely everything everywhere, God already owns. God even owns you and me because He created us. Psalm 139:13

Now, the good news (Gospel) is that God knew that you and I would not be able to perfectly follow His commandments. God also knew that you and I have nothing to pay the debt of death for our not being able to follow His commandments. Christ Jesus, God’s only begotten Son, when here on earth as a human man, fully and completely without fail followed each and every one of God’s commandments to the perfection level God requires. Not only did Christ Jesus follow God’s commandments perfectly, He also suffered and physically died on the cross to pay the debt of death for the sins of you and me! And above all this, Christ Jesus physically rose from death and ascended into Heaven with God. Through all of this, God sees Christ Jesus as being perfect, which He is perfect. For everyone who places their trust in the fact that Christ Jesus fully paid the debt of sin that they owe, God sees these people through Christ Jesus as being perfect too; even though on their own they are imperfect. Romans 3:21-28

So the good news is if you honestly put your trust into Christ Jesus as fully paying the debt you owe God and you repent (turn away from sinning), you have indeed received the greatest gift anyone can receive, God’s total forgiveness. There is nothing more you need to do however, I suggest that you start getting to know God better.

The best way for you to get to know God better is to frequently read the Bible which He gave to us so that you and I can get to know Him better. At you can learn more about what it means to follow Christ. I encourage you to begin reading the Gospel of John in your Bible, or online at

I suggest too that you find a church which follows Christ Jesus and that you join in worship and Bible study people in your area who also have accepted Christ Jesus as their Savior.

My prayer for you is that you feel God’s perfect love for you and that you realize that Christ Jesus fully paid the debt you owe God for all the knowingly wrong you’ve done and that you honestly accept God’s free gift of eternal life with Him and that you build your relationship stronger with Him.

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