Hello again, I’m wondering: What does it mean “to accept Jesus as a personal saviour”? I keep hearing the word thrown around in fundamentalist groups and I never fully understand what it means. Thanks again.
Great question. This is one of those phrases that we sometimes refer to as “christianese.” It gets tossed around by church people so often, that they sometimes forget that people who have never heard it may need an explanation. Just asking the question, like you have, is the way to go as opposed to feeling bad that you don’t know this thing nobody ever explained to you, which unfortunately happens to some people.
What people are talking about when they talk about “accepting Jesus as your personal savior” (or saviour if you are from one of the fancier countries) is that being a Christian is a personal relationship with Jesus. That is different than just believing that there is a God.
In James 2:19 it is pointed out that even Satan believes there is a God. That is not the same thing as living in faith and relationship with Jesus.
That is one of the coolest things about Jesus. He is not just a savior. He is not just the savior. He is your savior. When Jesus was at the last supper, He said to his disciples, and to us through the scriptures, “this is my body that was broken for you, this is my blood that was spilled for you.”
Your salvation wasn’t just some paperwork that got taken care of in the office. It was a deeply personal act of love.
To accept that just means to accept that it was for you. Jesus refers to His blood as a new covenant. A covenant means an agreement. In this agreement, Jesus takes all the punishment for our sin and we get eternal life in paradise as a free gift- pretty sweet deal.
If someone comes to you and offers you a gift, it would be pretty weird to reply “I acknowledge your existence.” For a gift to be yours, you have to accept it, and that means realizing that it is for you, personally.
-Matt from The Bridge