These words are the title to an old song, a dear and true song reflecting spiritual truth. When Jesus died on Calvary, he paid for our sins. This was a debt that God wanted to forgive to us, so he allowed Jesus to pay it for us (Rom. 3:25-26). Jesus did not pay part of this debt, he paid it all.
However, the fact that Jesus paid the entire debt for our sins does not mean that there is nothing for us to do. Many people teach that we do nothing. Some teach that we must believe, but then they go on to say that even faith is implanted in our hearts by God, so we didn't really do even that. Nothing we can do can earn our salvation for us; Jesus earned salvation by his death. But Jesus has set certain conditions we must meet. If we fail to meet those conditions we do not receive salvation. Let's look at some of the things we must do to be saved:
- Believe in Jesus (Mark 16:16; John 3:16; 8:24)
- Repent of our sins (Acts 2:38)
- Confess our faith in Jesus (Matthew 10:32; Romans 10:9-10)
- Be baptized — immersed in water — (Acts 22:16)
Some people get stuck on the issue of baptism. They say that baptism can't be part of salvation because we are saved by grace, but grace doesn't exclude our faith, our repentance, or our confession, so why should it exclude baptism as a condition of salvation? Some say that baptism can't be necessary to salvation because all we have to do is call upon the name of the Lord (Romans 10:13), but baptism is part of calling on the name of the Lord (Acts 22:16).
If you have questions, concerns or even disagreements we invite you to contact us at The Bible Answer and come study with us.