I just became a Christian! Now that I've put my faith in Jesus, what do I do now?

Wonderful! Trusting in Christ is absolutely the best and most important decision anyone can ever make (John 3:16–18; Titus 3:4–7). It's also the start of a lifelong process of growth and learning. That journey is not always easy (John 16:33), but God promises to help us along the way (Matthew 28:20; John 14:18).

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I just became a Christian! Now that I've put my faith in Jesus, what do I do now?

Congratulations! Accepting Christ as your Savior not only changes your eternity (John 3:36), it changes your life! However, it doesn't instantly answer all possible questions. You may be wondering "what am I supposed to do now? How do I follow God now that I've trusted in Jesus?" Here are five basic ideas you can use to get started. If you find something confusing or concerning, don't forget to check our commentary here at BibleRef.com, or the vast resources available at GotQuestions.org.

1) Be sure you understand your decision for salvation.

Scripture tells us it's possible to know whether we've truly been saved (1 John 5:13). That serves two purposes. First, it gives us reassurance, comforting us with a reminder that we're eternally redeemed. Second, it gives us a way to recognize if we're not quite there, yet. The basic outline of salvation, as given in Scripture, is this:

a) Everyone has sinned; every person has done things which disobey and displease God (Romans 3:23).

b) God is perfectly good and holy, so our sin separates us from Him. We deserve to be eternally disconnected from Him (Romans 6:23).

c) Out of love and mercy, God came in the form of Jesus Christ, who died to pay the penalty we owe for our sin (Romans 5:8; 2 Corinthians 5:21). By dying on the cross, Jesus took the punishment we deserve. By rising from the dead, Jesus proved His message was true, and that His death covers our debt of sin.

d) Anyone who trusts in the death of Christ as payment for their sins is granted forgiveness—salvation—from God. Those who admit their sin, sincerely relying on Jesus for salvation, will be saved (John 3:16; Romans 5:1; Romans 8:1). That means an eternity in heaven.

e) Those who have been saved are immediately, and permanently, given the Holy Spirit (John 14:26). The Spirit helps us to learn God's truth, through the Bible, and gives us the power to live accordingly.

Those are the core points of the gospel. If you place your faith in Christ, as your Savior, then you are saved, right now! That means God will never abandon you or turn away from you (Romans 8:38–39; Matthew 28:20). A person who is genuinely saved cannot lose that salvation—ever (John 10:28–29). If you have accepted Christ, you can be confident in your salvation and rely on His power to follow God's will.

2) Connect with a Bible-teaching Church.

The primary purposes of a Christian church are fellowship, teaching of the Bible, and worship. Being connected to a local church is not merely a good idea: it's a command from God (Hebrews 10:25).

God never intended for people to be entirely alone (Genesis 2:18). He also does not intend for Christians to be alone in their spiritual lives (Ephesians 4:15–16; 1 Corinthians 12:19–20). And so, the local church is important. The church, in this case, is not the building but the people who serve and associate with each other. The simple concept of being together—sharing time and space—is called fellowship.

We need other believers to help us properly understand the written Word of God (Acts 8:30–31; Titus 1:7–9). Newer believers need the wisdom and experience of more mature Christians (Titus 2:1). This process is called discipleship. Discipleship is crucial to living a successful Christian life. The Bible is our ultimate guide (1 Timothy 3:16–17; 1 Corinthians 4:6), but mentors and friends are necessary to properly grasp those truths (Proverbs 11:14; Hebrews 5:12–14).

Churches are also important so that followers of Christ can thank God for all He has done for us. This act of praising God is called worship. Because God is holy, merciful, loving, righteous and graceful, He deserves our worship (Revelation 4:11; Isaiah 6:1–7).

3) Take time for God on a daily basis.

For a saved Christian, contact with God is like food: the longer one goes without, the weaker one becomes. It's critical for a believer to spend time focused on God, every single day. Some people carve out a set time in their schedule for this, often called quiet time or a daily devotion. Whether this is in the morning or evening, at a routine time or at different moments, it does not matter. What's important is that you commit to daily, prioritized time alone with God every day. That usually takes one of two forms:

The first way we focus on God is prayer. Prayer does not have to be long, complicated, or eloquent. It does not have to use the "right" words or be organized in the "right" way. Jesus' model prayer (Matthew 6:9–13) tells us that prayer is where we praise God, tell Him what concerns us, and ask Him to provide for those needs.

The second way is study of the Word of God: the Bible. Teachers and pastors in a church will help you learn about Scripture. However, it's very important to read the Bible yourself. Scripture is the most-authoritative source of spiritual knowledge. While it does not answer every question a person could possibly ask, it does tell us everything we must know to live according to God's will.

4) Develop relationships for spiritual growth.

Being involved with a local church is important. What's also important is connecting to individual people, on a personal level. The people you choose to spend time with will have a massive influence on your life: their approach to spiritual things will "rub off" on you. While that doesn't mean we should cut all non-believers out of our lives, it does mean we need to prioritize relationships with those who love and honor God.

Christian relationships include simple friendship, where two people encourage each other, provide support, and even accountability. It also includes mentorship, where a more spiritually mature believer helps a less-mature Christian grow in their faith. The more time you spend living, serving, and communicating with other Christians, the more secure your faith will be.

5) Follow God's will and be Baptized.

This step is last on the list only because it is often over-emphasized. Baptism is not a requirement for salvation. Nor is it a magic ritual which physically washes away sins. Baptism is a public step of obedience: it's a way of declaring your faith in Christ.

To be baptized—from a term meaning "to immerse in water"—is to symbolically identify with the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ (Romans 6:3–4). It's the first and primary step of obedience which each saved person is called to follow. If you have sincerely and legitimately accepted Christ as your Savior, you should speak with the pastor of your local church about being baptized.