HOW GOD SEES US

Was the cross really necessary? Why did Christ, the sinless one, have to die? Weren't we really good enough for God if He would just overlook our worst faults? Couldn't we do something ourselves to make us acceptable to God? After all, didn't He create us in His image? Are we all condemned to hell? In Romans 3:23, God said that "all have sinned and come short of the glory of God." Weíre not what God created us to be and none of us possess within ourselves the power to become what God wants us to be. But, while we are "helpless," we are not "hopeless." God has provided a way for us to get to heaven.

The Bible says that God commands all men everywhere to repent, "for He has fixed a day when He will judge the world in righteousness by that Man He has ordained." [Acts 17:31].

The Judge will be the Christ He raised from the dead. He has made a way for us to escape the Lake of Fire and the eternal torture that awaits the non-believer. The God who commands us to repent doesnít leave us incapable of response. Oh, He is so rich in mercy, so abundant in grace, and so great in His love! In fact, John 3:16 says that "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes on Him should not perish but will have everlasting life." This famous scripture, known and loved around the world, makes it unmistakably clear that Jesus Christ is God's only Son. By the same token, Jesus Christ is man's only Savior. Christ is not "one" of many ways to God, nor is He "the best of several ways." "He is the only way!" Jesus Himself said, "I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life, no man comes unto the Father but by Me." [John 14:6.]

Christ is the never changing "way," Heís the never failing "truth," and Heís the everlasting "life." Jesus is the "way" you can be saved, and the "truth" that you can be sure, and the "life" that you can be satisfied.

We're told in the scriptures that Jesus "humbled Himself unto God and became obedient unto death on the cross." [Philippians 2:8]. For that reason, God gave Him "the Name that's above every name, that at the Name of Jesus every knee would bow, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord." [Philippians 2:10-11].

The Bible says that there is salvation in no other. Acts 4:12 "Neither is there salvation in any other; for there is no other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved."

There is only one name that opens heaven's doors and God's heart, and that's the name of Jesus.

There's only one name that can break the power of sin and set us free of that sin, the name of Jesus.

Far from being narrow and unfair, this is the most gracious and fairest of all possible solutions to our sin problem. God didnít leave us to ourselves to find a way back to Him. Which one of us knows where God is that we could find Him for ourselves first and then create a path that any others could and would follow? God alone knows what it takes to bring us back to Him.

The Bible says that God longs for all men to be saved and to know and understand this truth. God is on one side and all the people are on the other side, and Jesus Christ, as man Himself, is in between to bring them together, by giving His life for all mankind. This is the extraordinary thing that has been done by our extraordinary God.

Maybe you already believe in Him. Maybe youíre reading this out of curiosity, or maybe youíre reading it with conviction. Maybe you protest it or maybe you praise it. Maybe you have never had anyone explain the gospel of Jesus Christ in terms you could understand. This has nothing to do with how knowledgeable you are or how intelligent. It has to do with your eternal soul and it's eternal place of dwelling.

I enjoy explaining how much God wants you to spend eternity in heaven and not in hell. Here's how it works. Romans 5:19 says "for as by one man's disobedience many were made sinners, so by One shall many be made righteous." You and I did not become sinners by anything we did, so we canít be made righteous by anything we can do. Someone else did something and that made you and me sinners. We canít escape responsibility for our sins, even though another caused us to be sinners. By the same token, someone else had to do something in order for us to be made right with God.

The Bible sums up all mankind in the lives of two men, Adam and Christ. 1 Corinthians 15:22 "For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive." Adam sinned and as a result all of us are sinners. But Adam doesnít bear the guilt alone because we "all have turned aside unto our own way." [Isaiah 53:6]. We are twice guilty, once because Adam sinned and twice because we ourselves have sinned. The matter of sin goes far deeper than our behavior. It goes to the very core of our being. Iím not a sinner because I sinned, I sin because I am a sinner. Sin is not about what you do, it's about who you are. We are sinners.

The solution has to go deeper than religion. It has to be from God and be substantial and real. The Gospel, the Good News, teaches that God is not interested in merely changing our behavior. Heís fully dedicated to changing me and to changing you. The Bible states this in 2 Corinthians 5:17 "if any man is in Christ Jesus he is a new creation. Old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new." You can be born again today and be made new through faith in Jesus Christ. Furthermore, read Romans 5:6 God demonstrated His love to us in "that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us." Again, look what the Bible says in Romans 8:32: "God, that spared not His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things?" Whatever you need to live a godly life youíll find in Jesus Christ alone. One man, Adam, got us into all this mess, so God decided that One Man would get us out of it.

God looked down the corridors of time and examined each of Adam's descendants. He looked at you, and He looked at me, to see if there was anyone who could pay the price for the sins of mankind. There was none. Not even one. So, God did it Himself. God became a man, the man Christ Jesus. He lived among us, He was tempted in all points like we are, yet without sin. When Christ died on the cross, it wasnít to pay the penalty for His own sins because He had none. God took the death of His holy Son and counted it as the payment for our sins, yours and mine.

Millions of people around the world and throughout history have believed in Christ and will spend eternity in heaven instead of hell because of that. It's no wonder Christians ask you to believe this with us today. Jesus Christ is incomparable in His grace. He was and still is unassisted in His work as our Redeemer. Itís significant that His birth shows how much we were worth to Him, that He, God, would humble Himself and become one of us, a lowly man. He showed us how we should live. Our "forgiveness" is in His death, our "hope" is in His resurrection, and our "promised glory" is in His coming for His believers to take them to heaven.

Romans 6:23 Tells us the truth; "The wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord." Then read Romans 5:20. There the Bible reads; "Where sin abounded, grace did much more abound." Sin abounds in Adam, grace abounds in Christ. You were born the first time into the consequences of Adam's fall. You had no choice in the matter. But, now you can be born again and enter into the full benefits of Christ's obedience. Here you do have a choice. No one else can make it for you. It's your decision.

Centuries ago there was a great military leader named Joshua. He stood before a vast assembly of people, something over 2 million, in his nation's capitol, and he issued this simple and direct challenge; "Chose you this day whom you will serve, but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord." [Joshua 24:15.] Joshua's challenge brought a revival to his nation and salvation to his home through his choice to follow Christ.

If you haven't already done so, won't you trust Christ today? You can make a difference in your home by following Jesus. And then, we, as Christians, can make a difference in our nation.

April 15, 1912, about one week after my mother and dad were married, that brand new ship the Titanic, set out across the North Atlantic on it's maiden voyage. [There is a movie about it now that drew record crowds.] It was carrying about 2200 souls. It was supposedly unsinkable. Then the unthinkable happened. It struck an iceberg and sank in minutes, costing the lives of almost 1500 people. Less than half that many were saved. They posted a list of names on the shore, with two columns, one with a heading: "saved" and the other: "lost." There was no distinction as to rank or place in life for the names on those lists, or anything else, just "saved" or "lost."

This planet earth is just like a huge ship on it's maiden voyage in space among the planets of God's heaven, and it's on a collision course with a great and terrible day of God's judgment. Don't worry about the mile wide asteroid that they thought might hit the earth. God has other plans. He tells us in the Bible so we know what to expect. There are a lot of people that laugh at the idea of that judgment day, even think it is unthinkable, but the unthinkable will occur. The "unsinkable" will sink. Christ is coming back in judgment of this world. That final day when the names are posted on the shores of eternity we won't be listed according to our wealth, our position, works, fame, achievements, or religious affiliation. There will be two columns of names, "saved" and "lost." On which list is your name going to appear?

2 Peter 3:9. "The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is long-suffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance." Look what it says in another place, 1 Timothy 2:3-6. "This is good, and pleases God our Savior, [4] who wants all men to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. [5] For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, [6] who gave himself as a ransom for all men--."

God desires all men to be saved, and come to the knowledge of the truth. There is no question about God's choice for you. Heís already done all that is needed for you to be saved. The choice is now yours alone. Romans 10:13 says that "whosoever calls upon the Name of the Lord shall be saved." That includes you. If you haven't already, will you call on the name of Jesus today?

If youíre wondering how to go about it, the Bible puts it in the clearest and simplest of terms. Romans 10:9. "That if you shall confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus, and shall believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you shall be saved." This simply means to honestly "confess" to God that you are a sinner and "believe" that Jesus is the Son of God and that He died for your sins, you will be saved immediately. God acknowledged payment for your sins by raising Jesus from the dead. This calls for a public confession of a private faith. That's what God is asking you to do. If you haven't already, I'm asking you to do that now before it is eternally too late. Once you die, itís too late to make a decision. Hell will be your new home for eternity. One of my dearest young friends just died. He lived about a month after being diagnosed with cancer. That's how uncertain everybody's life is. I've spent quite a little time telling you how much you matter to God. Now will you take a few moments and tell God how much He matters to you?

If you want Jesus to be your Savior and your Lord, to forgive you of your sins and reconcile you to God and place His Holy Spirit within your heart and life, please accept His offer now. He gives us the power to live the life that truly pleases God, the life that God had intended for us from the beginning, and your destination will be heaven for eternity . That's why Jesus died on the cross. He died for my sins. He died for yours, too. Trust Him today.

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