What is the sinner’s prayer?
The sinners prayer is a Christian term for a prayer that is said when someone wants to repent of their sin, ask God for forgiveness and state belief in the life, death, and saving resurrection of Jesus Christ. Romans 10:9-10 says that “if you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.”
Millions have come to a saving relationship with Jesus Christ through church services, friends, and family leading them in a salvation prayer. However it is not words in a prayer that save. Jesus Christ alone has the power to save through faith. J.D Greerer explains it well – “It’s not the prayer that saves; it’s the repentance and faith behind the prayer that lays hold of salvation. My concern is that over-emphasizing the prayer has often (though unintentionally) obscured the primary instruments for laying hold of salvation: repentance and faith.”
The four examples below of the sinners prayer can help you communicate with God that you repent of your sin, accept His forgiveness, and accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior.
The Sinner’s Prayer (by Dr. Ray Pritchard)
Lord Jesus, for too long I’ve kept you out of my life. I know that I am a sinner and that I cannot save myself. No longer will I close the door when I hear you knocking. By faith I gratefully receive your gift of salvation. I am ready to trust you as my Lord and Savior. Thank you, Lord Jesus, for coming to earth. I believe you are the Son of God who died on the cross for my sins and rose from the dead on the third day. Thank you for bearing my sins and giving me the gift of eternal life. I believe your words are true. Come into my heart, Lord Jesus, and be my Savior. Amen.
If you have prayed this prayer in sincere faith, you may want to put your initials by the prayer along with today’s date as a reminder that you have come to Christ in faith, trusting him as your Lord and Savior.
Sinner’s Prayer From Scripture – (Psalm 51, King David)
“Have mercy on me, O God,
according to Your unfailing love;
according to Your great compassion
blot out my transgressions.
Wash away all my iniquity
and cleanse me from my sin.
For I know my transgressions,
and my sin is always before me.
Against You, You only, have I sinned
and done what is evil in Your sight,
so that You are proved right when You speak
and justified when You judge.
Surely I have been a sinner from birth,
sinful from the time my mother conceived me…
Cleanse me with hyssop, and I will be clean;
wash me and I will be whiter than snow…
Create in me a pure heart, O God,
and renew a steadfast spirit within me.
Do not cast me from Your presence
or take Your Holy Spirit from me.
Restore to me the joy of Your salvation
and grant me a willing spirit to sustain me.
Then will I teach transgressors Your ways,
and sinners will turn back to You.
The Sinners Prayer (by John Barnett)
The following prayer expresses the desire to transfer trust to Christ alone for eternal salvation. If its words speak of your own heart’s desire, praying them can be the link that will connect you to God.
Dear God, I know that I am a sinner and there is nothing that I can do to save myself. I confess my complete helplessness to forgive my own sin or to work my way to heaven. At this moment I trust Christ alone as the One who bore my sin when He died on the cross. I believe that He did all that will ever be necessary for me to stand in your holy presence. I thank you that Christ was raised from the dead as a guarantee of my own resurrection. As best as I can, I now transfer my trust to Him. I am grateful that He has promised to receive me despite my many sins and failures. Father, I take you at your word. I thank you that I can face death now that you are my Savior. Thank you for the assurance that you will walk with me through the deep valley. Thank you for hearing this prayer. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.
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This article is part of our larger Prayers resource meant to inspire and encourage your prayer life when you face uncertain times. Visit our most popular prayers if you are wondering how to pray or what to pray. Remember, the Holy Spirit intercedes for us and God knows your heart even if you can’t find the words to pray.
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Here is a simple prayer that you can pray to receive Christ as your Savior
“Lord Jesus, I want to become a follower of Yours. I come to You acknowledging that I am a sinner. I know that I cannot make myself acceptable to God through my own efforts. I believe You went to the cross to be judged in my place. I trust You to save me from the judgment I deserve. I trust You to give me a new life. I believe that You are the only one who can give me eternal life and true communion with God. Give me the free gift of Your Holy Spirit so that I may live a life that honors you. Thank you, Lord Jesus, for your love. Give me the strength and wisdom I need to learn Your ways so that I might follow You as my Lord. Guide me to the right church and surround me with other Christians to help me with this new journey, in Your Holy Name Jesus Amen.”
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Please note: The Salvation Prayer (sometimes referred to as the Sinner’s Prayer) below, is not an “official prayer” but rather a sample prayer to follow when asking Jesus into your heart. You can pray to God in your own words if you choose.
Regarding the location of the Sinner’s Prayer in the Bible? Well, there isn’t one mentioned; it is only implied. The basis of the Sinner’s Prayer comes from Romans 10:9-10. “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.”
Dear God in heaven, I come to you in the name of Jesus. I acknowledge to You that I am a sinner, and I am sorry for my sins and the life that I have lived; I need your forgiveness.
I believe that your only begotten Son Jesus Christ shed His precious blood on the cross at Calvary and died for my sins, and I am now willing to turn from my sin.
You said in Your Holy Word, Romans 10:9 that if we confess the Lord our God and believe in our hearts that God raised Jesus from the dead, we shall be saved.
Right now I confess Jesus as the Lord of my soul. With my heart, I believe that God raised Jesus from the dead. This very moment I accept Jesus Christ as my own personal Savior and according to His Word, right now I am saved.
Thank you Jesus for your unlimited grace which has saved me from my sins. I thank you Jesus that your grace never leads to license, but rather it always leads to repentance. Therefore Lord Jesus transform my life so that I may bring glory and honor to you alone and not to myself.
Thank you Jesus for dying for me and giving me eternal life. AMEN.
YER OF SALVATION
Please note: The Salvation Prayer (sometimes referred to as When you accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, you will receive the GIFT of the Holy Spirit , as it states in Acts 2:38:
Acts 2:38 – King James Version (KJV)
38 Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
PLEASE NOTE: Confession of your sins is not something you do just the one time or periodically. Whenever you sin, you should immediately repent and turn away from your sin.
Then, as you grow in Christ , and your love for Him grows, you should be seeking Him through His Word . You will need to find a bible-based church and study God’s Word; and eventually become water-baptized. It is through water-baptism that you show your obedience to the Lord. Water baptism is a symbol of your salvation from the dead. You were dead but now you live, for the Lord Jesus Christ has redeemed you for a price! The price was His death on the cross!
Dr. Charles Stanley of InTouch Ministries states: “In terms of salvation, you cannot separate faith and repentance—both happen simultaneously. In order to be saved, you must place faith in Christ for the forgiveness of sins, and that faith decision requires a change of mind (repentance) about your way of life. Yet many people mistakenly believe they must change their way of living long before they can make a faith decision for the Savior. The truth is, repentance does not mean that we must completely change our ways and “clean ourselves up” so we can receive Christ as Lord.
If you’re holding off on a decision for Christ until you think you are “ready” or “worthy,” you’re waiting in vain. Jesus is ready to receive you right now. Only as a child of God will you find the power—His power—to truly become the person you were created to be.”
MAY GOD BLESS YOU AND KEEP YOU!
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