Question:

Hello,

I am troubled and need advice. I am in my late seventies. I want to go to heaven when I die, but due to my past, I am not sure this will happen. I was raised and baptized in the church. I have always believed that God and Jesus were real but during my life I was a terrible sinner. I committed adultery many times, stole, cursed and lied all the time. I have asked God and Jesus to forgive me, and that I be born again so that I might be allowed to enter heaven when I die. I pray every day confessing my sins. I ask that my family be protected. Will I be saved and born again? What else must I do to become a child of God and Jesus? I know that they exist and know what I have done. I don't know if I will be forgiven of my sins and enter heaven when the time comes to be judged. Please give me your thoughts and advice. I need help.


Answer:

Whether you reach heaven depends on you. Being a Christian is about changing your life. It doesn't matter if you change early in life or late. What matters is that you change. "For godly sorrow produces repentance leading to salvation, not to be regretted; but the sorrow of the world produces death. or observe this very thing, that you sorrowed in a godly manner: What diligence it produced in you, what clearing of yourselves, what indignation, what fear, what vehement desire, what zeal, what vindication! In all things you proved yourselves to be clear in this matter" (II Corinthians 7:10-11).

It seems that in the years you've been away from the church, you've forgotten some of the Bible's teachings. You speak as if being born again is something done to you, but the Bible always refers to it as something you do. See What is the difference between being born again and being saved?

The basics of salvation are discussed in What Must I Do to Go to Heaven? Assuming that you have sincerely done these things, then it is a matter of you returning to God, not just in your prayers but in all aspects of your life. There is much work to be done and you have little time left to serve the Lord. The only thing holding you back is you.