Type to search

God: Does believing in Him qualify you for Heaven? 

Gary Googe Oct 19

There have been many times when I’ve realized that someone was thinking that believing in God alone would qualify them for Heaven. But is that what the Bible tells us? Exactly how is it that a person can know for sure that they are heaven-bound.  As I sometimes say, if all else fails, follow instructions! But the problem with that thinking in this case is that some people think they are following instructions.  They say they believe in God and they’re trying to please Him by how they live.  In their thinking, such works do have some part in the attainment of salvation and entrance into Heaven.  Some will even quote Scripture for you about it.  Probably the favorite one of them all is found in the book of James.

James 2:18-20

18 Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works.

19 Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble.

There’s only one devil who is also called Satan and some other names.  The “devils” spoken of here are demons who are also called fallen angels. They are ones who once served God but revolted against Him.

20 But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead? [Emphasis added]

When people quote or refer to these verses, they act as though they don’t believe I know about them.  What THEY fail to realize is that James 1:1 introduces the book saying what it says for good reason.  Here’s the first sentence in that book.

James 1:1

1 James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad, greeting. [Emphasis added]

When you get your mail don’t you make sure it isn’t addressed to someone else? Are we in any way a part of “the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad”? Does this include us today? It does not! All those writings in the Bible from Hebrews to Revelation were addressed to Israel.  You’ll find numerous statements in those books that conflict with the writings of the apostle Paul.  On the surface those verses make it appear that the Bible contradicts itself.  Many other things in the Bible don’t, but things like this concerning the place of works in salvation do conflict.  There are numerous passages that demonstrate this truth, telling us that our personal works, religious or otherwise, have nothing to do with our attainment of salvation today.  Here are three.

Ephesians 2:8-9

8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:

9 Not of works, lest any man should boast. [Emphasis added]

Romans 4:4-5

4 Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt.

5 But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness. [Emphasis added]

Titus 3:5

5 Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration [PALINGENESIA = a compound noun – PALIN = again & GENESIA = born], and renewing [ANAKAINOSIS = a renewal of thinking] of the Holy Ghost; [Emphasis added]

Obviously believing in God is a good thing. It is a step in the right direction, but it alone does not provide real hope of everlasting life in Heaven.  It is because of this that God sent His Son, Jesus Christ, to provide a way for our salvation, something we could not provide for ourselves.

2 Corinthians 5:21

21 For he [God the Father] hath made him [Jesus Christ] to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him. [Emphasis added]

Must we have goodness to qualify for Heaven? Yes, we do! But our goodness isn’t good enough because it isn’t perfect.  God doesn’t see our righteousness the way we do.  We fall way short of His standards.

Isaiah 64:6

6 But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away. [Emphasis added]

Romans 3:23-24

23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;

Saying that we “come short” means our own righteousness is not good enough for God’s acceptance.

24 Being justified [DIKAIOO = made righteous (by God’s righteousness being judicially credited to us)] freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: [Emphasis added] 

It was the redemptive work of Christ on the cross that provided the way for us in this.  God doesn’t grade on the curve.  He demands absolute perfection for salvation.  This is something we are incapable of providing for ourselves.  But God offers us that righteousness freely through Jesus Christ.  When we put our faith in Him, His perfect righteousness is immediately credited to us, and it is that righteousness that becomes the basis for our salvation.  Having this perfect righteousness of God is a prerequisite to getting into Heaven.  Again, it is a work of God through Christ that makes this available to us freely.

2 Corinthians 5:19

19 To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation. [Emphasis added]

Instead of holding our sins against us, they were all held against Christ when He was on the cross and He fully paid the penalty due for them.  When a person accepts THAT and that alone as the basis for their salvation, they gain it at that point in time and they never need to be afraid of losing it.


Again, believing in God is a good thing, but that alone doesn’t provide anyone with salvation.  Instead, one must put one’s faith in what God did through Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection.  It is that work of His that provides one with everlasting salvation.

1 Corinthians 15:1-4

1 Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel [EUANGELION = the good news] which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand;

2 By which also ye are saved [SOZO = saved or delivered], if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain.

3 For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures;

4 And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures: [Emphasis added]

All this excludes church membership, a watery ritual or ceremony, and anything else you can name.  It is faith in Christ’s work alone that qualifies someone for salvation and everlasting life in Heaven.

Share this article:
    Your Cart
    Your cart is emptyReturn to Shop

    Contact 4Us/2Us

    [super_form id="692"]

    Support Our Ministry


    Your gifts will be a part of the means by which this ministry is supported and sustained.

    Our objective is to give people the truth they need by which to gain salvation and to grow spiritually.

    We very much appreciate your part in this great work.

    Donation amount
    Donation frequency

    Don't worry - your information is safe with us!