While speaking to a group of teenagers in Scotland, I reached into my pocket, pulled out some money and offered it to a young man in the audience. I told him that he could say, “I believe in the money,” but he needed to receive the money for it to be his. I said, “If you receive it, it is a free gift from me. You didn’t do anything to earn it, but it is yours.”

Of course, he took the money! I was trying to help these teenagers understand an important spiritual truth: You can “believe” in Jesus, but you only have true salvation if you “receive” God’s gift to you—Jesus Christ. Salvation is a free gift; you cannot earn it. You do not deserve salvation, but God gives it to you anyway because He loves you. You have salvation and eternal life if you accept God’s gift to you and invite Jesus to be the Lord of your life.

The Bible is clear that when we receive Jesus as our Lord, He makes us His child. “Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God” (John 1:12).

Have you asked Jesus Christ into your life as your Lord and King? If not, you can do it right now. Pray this simple prayer:

Lord Jesus, I choose to stop trusting in myself and what I can do. I know that I am a sinner and I am sorry for my sins. I ask You to forgive me. I receive You into my life as my Savior and Lord. I repent and turn away from everything Your Word calls sin. Thank You, Jesus, for Your precious blood that washes all my sins away and for the power of the Holy Spirit to help me live a life that is pleasing to You from this day forward.