Contendah, my Friend,
In my initial post, I wrote:
8. Ask Jesus Into Your Heart!
I have always believed it was the thought that counts. So, however we say it -- THAT is the most important advise we can give to a non-believer!
And, you respond:
Tell us, Bill, where does your Bible say anything about asking Jesus into one's heart? If that is the most important advise [sic] you can give a non-Christian, then you should be able to show that non-Christian where, in the Bible (and not in some compendium of trite evangelical buzz phrases), he or anyone else is told to ask Jesus into his heart.
Glad you asked!
Revelation 3:20, "Behold, I stand at the door (He wants to come into your heart, the door of your soul) and knock; if anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and will dine with him, and he with Me."
In the Jewish culture of that day, the most intimate thing one could do with others -- was to dine with then, have fellowship with them. That is what Jesus Christ is saying to every non-believer, "I want to come into your heart and be your intimate Friend, to be your very Best Friend."
I like the way that David Guzik explains this Scripture passage:
David Guzik, Study Guide for Revelation 3
e. Behold, I stand at the door and knock: Jesus gives to this lukewarm church The Great Invitation. He knocks at the door, asking entry to come and dine with us, in the sense of sharing warm, intimate time. It only happens as we respond to His knock, but the promise is made to all: If anyone hears my voice.
i. The idea of Jesus at the door applies to the sinner and to the saint just the same. Jesus wants to come in to us, and dine with us, in the sense of having a deep, intimate relationship.
ii. I stand at the door: Sadly, Jesus stands on the outside, knocking to get in. If the church at Philadelphia was "The Church of the Open Door," then the church at Laodicea is "The Church of the Shut Out Jesus."
iii. I stand at the door and knock … If anyone hears My voice and opens the door: This statement of Jesus expresses a profound mystery. Why does Jesus stand outside the door? Why does He knock? Why does He wait until someone opens the door? Doesn't He have every right to break down the door, or enter some other way on His own accord? But He doesn't. The sovereign, omnipotent Jesus has condescended to work out His eternal plan by wooing the cooperation of the human heart.
iv. "The occupant must open the door. That is, he must repent of his pride and self-sufficiency, his human wisdom, and his cowardly neutrality." (Morris)
v. "Christ stands - waits long, at the door of the sinner's heart; he knocks - uses judgments, mercies, reproofs, exhortations, to induce sinners to repent and turn to him; he lifts up his voice - calls loudly by his word, ministers, and Spirit." (Clarke)
vi. Jesus comes to the door as the lover in the Song of Solomon. This is similar to - or perhaps a quotation of - Song of Solomon 5:2: It is the voice of my beloved! He knocks, saying, 'open for me, my sister, my love.
vii. The key to opening the door is to first hear His voice. When we give attention to what Jesus says, then we can be rescued from our own lukewarmness and enter into a "zealous" relationship with Him.
f. I will come into him: What a glorious promise! If we open the door, He will come in. He won't ring the bell and run away. He promises to come in, and then to dine with the believer.
i. When Jesus says dine with him, He speaks of a specific meal known as the deipnon. "The deipnon was the main meal of the day and was a leisurely affair, not a hurried snack." (Morris) This speaks of fellowship. This speaks of a depth to the relationship.
ii. "Supper (deipnon) was the main meal of the day. This was the meal at which a man sat and talked for long, for now there was time, for work was ended … it is not a mere courtesy visit, paid in the passing, which Jesus Christ offers to us. He desires to come in and to sit long with us, and to wait as long as we wish him to wait." (Barclay)
iii. This is where Jesus wants us, in the place of fellowship with Him. Everything He said to the Laodicean church up to this point must be seen in light of this loving desire for fellowship. "Rebuke and chastisement are no signs of rejection from Christ, but of His abiding and pleading love, even to the lukewarm and careless." (Alford)
g. If anyone: Notice that Jesus gives the call to individuals. He didn't say, "If any church," but if anyone. "We must not talk about setting the church right, we must pray for grace each one for himself, for the text does not say, 'If the church will open the door,' but 'If any man hear my voice and open the door.' It must be done by individuals: the church will only get right by each man getting right." (Spurgeon)
So, Contendah, my Freind, you ask me, "Tell us, Bill, where does your Bible say anything about asking Jesus into one's heart?"
So, I ask you, "How do YOU witness to a non-believer?" Or, do you?
Are you one of those "couch potato" Christians who declares, "If anyone wants to know about Jesus, he will ask me! If he doesn't ask me, I will not share Jesus with him! I will NOT force my beliefs on someone else!"
Is that your way of being His witness in all the world (Matthew 28:19-20, Acts 1:8, Mark 16:15) -- "I'll sit on my couch and wait for someone to ask me!" ?
If so, I am afraid you are suffering from a very bad case of "spiritual constipation" -- everything going in, and nothing going out!
But, I pray that I have answered your question about asking Jesus into our hearts and where to find that in Scripture.
God bless, have a wonderful, blessed day,