So what exactly do Christians believe?
What is this ‘Good News about Jesus’ that we keep talking about? And where does this ‘News’ come from?
Actually, the last question is a good place to start. Christians believe that the Bible is God’s special book. It is the ‘Word of God’, and therefore it is the source of everything we know about God, how he relates to us – and how we can relate to him.
In the Bible, we see an unfolding story.
It tells us that every human being has fallen short of the standard that God requires. In fact, we have decided that we don’t need God, and the results of this rebellion are plain to see today – hatred, selfishness, violence and greed. And this means that we are separated from God, who is perfect and holy.
God could have left us to our own devices. But he didn’t! Instead, he came to rescue us from the mess that we are in. You see, God is both loving and just. How could he forgive us for the mess we make of our lives without just ‘turning a blind eye’ to the hatred, selfishness and greed that spoil us?
He did it by taking the punishment himself. When Jesus was crucified, he went willingly to a cruel death, for us! And he did so, knowing that God will forgive all those who accept his death on their behalf. But death has been defeated by Jesus…and today, he is alive, transforming the lives of men and women who love and trust him.
Is that the end of it?
No! The Bible makes it quite clear that God will not allow the world to ignore him forever…a time is coming when the mess we have made of this world will be ended. Jesus himself has promised to return and for Christians that will be a great day! He has promised to renew this tired planet, and for those who have trusted him throughout the centuries, a new life will begin, free from all that has spoilt our lives here and now. The Bible also has a solemn warning – for those who turn their back on Jesus and who never respond to his offer of forgiveness, will face God’s justice.
We said that God is both loving and just, and the great theme of the Bible is exactly that. So how can we respond to this Good News? Simply by asking Jesus to forgive you for everything in your life that falls short of God’s standard and to help you to live from today as God intended you to. A quiet prayer, sincerely meant, is the beginning of a new life!
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