You and God
If you are new to Christianity we think the below video clip offers a thoughtful introduction. Credit to Dan Stevers.
To really live life we need a reality check. That involves facing certain questions about ourselves:
Where do we come from? (origins)
Why are we here? (meaning)
How are we to live? (morality)
What happens when we die? (destiny)
We might add to those questions “Does anyone care about me?"
Christianity is unique in its answers to these questions. The answers are all linked by a story – a true story about God who created everything and who started and will end history. A God who is ultimately in control even though we may feel that things are out of control.
In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.
Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made.
In this story, or rather History, God gave us free will. This means we can choose to obey God, or not. This enables us to have a free relationship with Him - to be seperate and distinct from Him, and yet also reason with Him, love Him and be loved by Him. The first humans Adam and Eve disobeyed God and their disobedience separated them from God. As children of those first humans we are all born sinful, and inevitably disobey God. Each of us has strayed away from God in our own way and lived a life of our own design rather than God's. This is sin and makes us less than perfect. Not only that but it is this sin which is the reason we will one day die. For most of us we recognise this dilemma in ourselves and our inability to do anything about it. So we are disconnected from God, stuck in a sinful life, uncertain about death and with no understanding about why we are here.
Our lives, our very souls need saving. This is why Jesus came into the world - to save sinners and restore us to God our creator.
For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.
For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
Jesus was born to die for our sins. No one else in history has ever claimed that or proved able to do it. Jesus, when He died on the cross, took the punishment for our sinfulness. He was seperated from God the Father so that we could be reunited with Him. His resurrection from the dead three days later not only proved that He was God but came with a promise that God will raise us from the dead if we confess Him and follow Him.
Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die."
More than this, God offers us His Holy Spirit to give us power over sin. It is no longer inevitable that we will sin, we can choose to be obedient to God. Our lives can be transformed now by God's power and love. Jesus has also promised to return for us and to wrap up history and take us into eternity.
Then everyone will see the Son of Man arrive on the clouds with great power and glory. And he will send forth his angels to gather together his chosen ones from all over the world - from the farthest ends of the earth and heaven.
And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away.
Receiving God’s salvation is like receiving a gift. A gift is no good if it's left in the corner, gathering dust. We must reach out and accept the gift, take it into our hands, give thanks for it and un-wrap it.
In the same way, we need to respond to God's gift. We must recognise our own sinfulness and our need for God’s forgiveness, accepting and confessing that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and that His death and resurrection have made possible the forgiveness of our sins and the resurrection of our own bodies when we die.
The Christian life is more than that though. In following Jesus Christ we learn that we are loved by God, are part of His family and that He has plans for our lives which are meaningful and eternal. You cannot imagine what God has in His heart for you! If you are not yet a Christian we encourage you to pray this prayer and to contact us so that we can encourage you in any way we can.
This is know as the sinner's prayer. You don't have to use these exact words, but by praying this prayer you're acknowledging your need of God and your desire to follow Jesus. You might feel different, or you might not - faith is a journey, and this is just the start of yours!
I realise that I have sinned against you and have not lived as I should have. I confess my sin, turn away from it and put my faith today in Jesus Christ whose death and resurrection have this day saved me from an eternity without God. I have decided to follow Jesus, to accept God’s grace and love for me and to give myself to serving God with my life. Thank you God for your promise that I am now forgiven and accepted by God and that my eternity is secure. In Jesus Name.
If you have prayed this prayer, we encourage you to tell someone. If you would like an opportunity to talk to someone or receive a Bible we would be very happy to hear from you.