How can I know Jesus? What does it mean to know Him?
"Knowing" Jesus means having a relationship with Him. A Christian does not only know about Christ, but a Christian also knows Christ personally. When Jesus prayed in John 17:3, He stated that eternal life is knowing the one true God and the Son whom He sent.
To know Christ personally means to get to know Him as you would a friend. In a friendship you spend time with the other person, and you have vulnerable conversations. Talking regularly is an important part of a relationship. To know Jesus is not just to read about Him educationally, but also to spend time understanding who He is. First John 5:20 says, "And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding, so that we may know him who is true; and we are in him who is true, in his Son Jesus Christ. He is the true God and eternal life." We should pray for understanding so that we can know Jesus and, consequently, know God.
Knowing Jesus begins with believing that He is our Savior who defeated death. "If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved" (Romans 10:9). Knowing God is also believing that He died to save us from our sin. "He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed" (1 Peter 2:24).
When you believe in the message of Christ, you are accepted into His family (John 1:12). There is even more good news found in John 3:16! For the people who know Jesus and believe in Him "should not perish but have eternal life."
Knowing Jesus is not based on our works, but it is based on placing our faith in Him. Our understanding of Christ is only possible though Jesus' death for our sins. Romans 5:8 teaches, "God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us." This means that it is not by works that we can know Christ, but through the grace that Jesus bought for us with His life. Ephesians 2:8–9 also explains, "For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast."
After learning about Jesus' gift of eternal life given to us, we can decide to place our faith in Him. Once we pray a prayer of understanding, we can begin to learn more about Him personally and spend time with Him.
If you believe that Jesus is who He said He is and want to accept His offer to be your Savior, you can pray a prayer something like this: "Dear God, I know that I am a sinner and apart from you deserve only judgment. I believe that Jesus Christ is God's Son who came to earth to live the perfect life that I couldn't. He died on the cross to pay the penalty for my sin. Then He rose again after three days, proving He is true, and offering salvation and eternal life to all who put their faith in Him. Please forgive me for my sins and help me live for you. I want to know Jesus personally. Thank you for accepting me and giving me eternal life."
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