Jesus entering Jerusalem
Jesus entering Jerusalem on his return to the earth
Unlike other past teachers, leaders and important figures of history, Jesus is still alive! His resurrection from the dead has been described as the best attested fact of ancient history. Maybe we can't see him yet, but we can still meet him in mind and spirit, and Jesus wants to meet you! The relationship he wants to have with you is more than friendship, it's more like Christian marriage! It is a total and eternal commitment to each other ‘for better or worse’, except that a relationship with Jesus Christ can only be for the better! This doesn’t mean that life with him will be trouble-free – it might involve a lot more trouble – but being united with Jesus means that you will be united with someone who in real life has overcome everything that the world or the devil can throw at us. He overcame even death, and you will be able to do the same with his help.
Jesus demonstrated the reality of his love for you when he chose to die for your sins, and he proved his power to raise you from the dead and give you everlasting life when he returned to life two days later. Christ’s real physical death and his real resurrection are facts of history that even non-Christian writers reported at the time. His resurrection is the final proof that he is who he claimed to be – the Christ foretold by Jewish prophets, the everlasting God in human form, the Saviour of the world. Christ’s resurrection is the proof that he is alive today, still seeking to save the lost, including you!
Right now this wonderful person, who loves you even more than you love yourself, wants to be ‘married’ to you for eternity as your Saviour and Lord. That is why he came to the earth. That is why in spirit he comes to you now. He promises that, joined to him, you will have fullness of life on this earth and an even more wonderful life in the everlasting world that is to come. He does not demand a dowry from you. You don't have to earn his love or even deserve it. Even if you were the worst of sinners, he would still love you and would still give you the same invitation. Jesus Christ is asking you this very day, “Will you marry me?” Well - something like that!
How does one respond to such a question? When a woman receives a proposal of marriage there are four things she must do before she says, "I will".. She must believe in the man concerned – that he loves her and will care for her and seek her happiness and welfare as long as they both live. She must decide to give up being single and doing what she likes and instead commit herself to sharing her life with this man. She must be willing for him to take decisions and lead the way when necessary, and to put him first, just as he will try to put her first. Finally of course she must tell him that she accepts his invitation and is willing to marry him.
The moment that she tells him “Yes” she seals an agreement between the two of them to move on to marriage. (In past generations that verbal agreement was so binding that if a man broke it he could be taken to court for ‘breach of promise’.) The newly engaged couple will now spend as much time together as they can, getting to know each other better and making preparations for their wedding. While a proposal of marriage and its acceptance is usually a private affair, a wedding is always a public occasion, an opportunity for the couple to make their vows to each other in the presence of witnesses and families, in order to seal their decision to be married and to receive support in keeping to it.
Baptisms in Lake Puyehue, Chile
With Jesus the equivalent of the wedding ceremony is baptism, a word which means immersion. In baptism new believers make a public declaration that they are breaking with their past life as ‘singles’ and committing themselves to live with Christ as their Lord. Their old life is symbolically buried as they sink under the water, and their new life as Christ’s bride symbolically begins when they (hopefully!) re-emerge. The new Christian’s ‘marriage’ is then consummated by Christ when he shares his life with his new bride by filling her with his Holy Spirit.
So how exactly can you say “Yes” to Jesus Christ’s amazing proposal of marriage to you right now? Traditionally a man kneels to propose marriage: you may want to do the same to accept Christ’s proposal. Either say the following words to him or use your own words. Whichever you choose, know that he is eagerly listening and is figuratively jumping up and down in excitement and anticipation to hear what you reply!
“Lord Jesus, I believe that you are alive, that you are the Son of God who gave his life to be my Saviour. I believe that God raised you from the dead to be Lord of all, including me.
I confess that in all kinds of ways I have resisted your will for me and have disobeyed God’s commands, making him both angry and sad. (You can mention any particular sins if you need to.) I am truly sorry.
Please forgive all my sins; help me to turn my back on them; and set me free from their hold over me.
I want to live for the rest of my life with you as my Lord. I want to show that I love you by how I live. Please be my Lord and Saviour from this moment onwards.”
If you’ve said that prayer or one like it, and if you meant it, then congratulations on your engagement! What a wonderful day this is. Make a note of the date!
Like a newly engaged fiancée, your task now is to get to know Jesus better by talking to him each day (that’s called prayer) and by listening to what he says to you (that’s called reading the Bible). There is plenty of help available for daily Bible reading in the form of suggestions about what to read and explanatory notes. Try to let Jesus talk to you in other ways too; let him guide you and help you. You can bring your needs and the needs of others to him in prayer.
- Jesus will want to introduce you to other members of his family. If you are not already part of a church where you can be baptised, find one, ideally one that is lively, loving and local. Ask Jesus to help you to find the best church or Christian fellowship for you.
- Next of course will come the ‘marriage ceremony’, when you make your commitment to Christ public by being baptized. Afterwards you should ask the church leaders to pray for you to be filled with the Holy Spirit. It's the Holy Spirit at work in us who enables us to live a new and better kind of life.
- Finally you will be ready to learn how you can best help Jesus in his work of recruiting others into his kingdom and preparing the world for his return!
May the Lord lead you, protect you, help you and bless you. I hope that one day we shall meet each other, if not in this life then in the life to come.
That’s all from me personally. But here are some verses from the Bible to encourage you, and to prove that I haven’t been making all this up! I’ve used an English translation called ‘The Good News Bible’.
“I alone know the plans I have for you, plans to bring you prosperity and not disaster, plans to bring about the future you hope for. Then you will call to me. You will come and pray to me, and I will answer you. You will seek me and you will find me, because you will seek me with all your heart.”
“Everyone whom my Father gives me will come to me. I will never turn away anyone who comes to me. For what my Father wants is that all who see the Son and believe in him should have eternal life. And I will raise them to life on the last day.”
“For God loved the world so much that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not die but have eternal life.”
“Each one of you must turn away from your sins and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ, so that your sins will be forgiven; and you will receive God’s gift, the Holy Spirit.”
“If we confess (admit) our sins to God, he will keep his promise and do what is right; he will forgive us our sins and purify us from all our wrongdoing.”
“Everyone who sins is a slave of sin. If the Son sets you free, then you will be really free.”
“The Lord your God is with you; his power gives you victory. The Lord will take delight in you, and in his love he will give you new life.”
“Christ loved the church and gave his life for it. He did this to dedicate the church to God by his word, after making it clean by washing it with water.”
“As the scripture says, ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and unite with his wife, and the two will become one.’ There is a deep secret truth revealed in this scripture, which I understand as applying to Christ and the church.”
“Anyone who is joined to Christ is a new being; the old is gone, the new has come. All this is done by God, who through Christ changed us from enemies into his friends and gave us the task of making others his friends also.”
With love in Christ,
Arnold V Page
 A child is born to us! A son is given to us! And he will be our ruler. He will be called, “Wonderful Counsellor”, “Mighty God”, “Eternal Father”, “Prince of Peace”. His royal power will continue to grow; his kingdom will always be at peace. He will rule as King David’s successor, basing his power on right and justice, from now until the end of time. The Lord Almighty is determined to do all this.” Isaiah 9.6,7.
 Jeremiah 29.11-13
 John 6.37,40
 John 3.16
 Acts 2.38
 I John 1.9
 John 8.34,36
 Zephaniah 3.17
 Ephesians 5.25,26
 Ephesians 5.31,32
 II Corinthians 5.17,18