Helmut Demnitz grew up being religious and assumed that was all that was needed to be acceptable before God.
Helmut believed in God and would have described himself as God-fearing.
"I grew up believing I was a Christian and that I loved God," he admits. "I was christened as a baby and at 14 years of age was confirmed."
Helmut got married at 24 years of age. "I hardly went to a church service, but I tried to live a clean life. I cared for my wife and three children and developed a love for nature," he says.
He acknowledged that his God was the God of creation, but he knew very little about Jesus. "Basically I knew that Jesus had come and died on a cross because He was hated by his own people because He spoke the truth to them.
"I was content in my level of belief until I read a book that my wife was reading," Helmut says. "The writer stated; 'If you don't know you are a sinner then ask God about it.'
"I decided to try the experiment to ask God to show me if I was a sinner. God being truthful showed me my shortfall in terms of my standing before Him as it states in Romans 3 verse 23 which says, 'For all have sinned and fall short of the glory (perfect sinless character) of God.'"
Helmut still did not read his Bible, but was aware of God's hand laying heavy on his conscience. He tried to gain the acceptance of God by his own efforts, but all to no avail.
"I asked God many times to forgive me in detail for various things, but it made no difference. Sometime later I discovered as I read my Bible that I could not achieve my own forgiveness.
"From 2 Corinthians 5 and verse 21 I saw that God had already taken care of forgiveness for my sin through His Son, Jesus. I understood that Jesus Christ who had no sin, was made in the likeness of sin on my behalf, so that I could become the righteousness of God in Him.
"In other words God charged Jesus for my sin! The payment was death on the cross so I could receive God's forgiveness for my sin as a free gift. The only other problem was that I needed to hand over the control of my life to God," says Helmut
He acknowledges that this took him a while to understand, but he got to that place of surrendering control of his life to God.
"When it happened I knew I was right with God. He came into my life and washed my guilty conscience away and replaced it with joy! What a wonderful day it was when Jesus came into my life and I thank God for it.
"That happened 40 years ago and I thank God that I have been able to share the good news of Jesus Christ over all these years with those who don't know Him. I thank God that He healed me after a serious car accident. I am 85 now and I am still able to work.
"God has blessed me with a wonderful wife, three children, six grandchildren and four great grandchildren. I thank Him for the peace and love that we have as a family. I know since I became the property of the Lord Jesus I am protected by God's power," Helmut acknowledges.
"There is no power in the whole universe that can harm me, or as the Bible says in Romans 8 verses 38-39; 'For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.'"•