New Here

New Here

New Here

What do you believe?

2

Have you ever taken a moment to stop and think about what you really believe? What is about the Christian message that attracts you and how you would communicate that to someone who is of a different worldview? I recently had the opportunity to do this as an assignment for an apologetics class I’ve taken. I think so often we hold onto core beliefs but until we are asked, we fail to be able to communicate those beliefs and the Christian message in a clear and succinct way. I’m sharing what I wrote below. I’d love to hear your response on what it is about the Christian message that most speaks to you!


“My belief is not in a religion but in a relationship. I believe in the greatest love story ever told. That the world was created by God, through love, to know Him in relationship. We were created by a God who wants to be intimately involved with His creation and we know this to be true because He has revealed Himself through Christ. A true relationship of love where we were given the choice to love. But when there’s a choice to love there’s also the choice not to love. We chose to live life on our own apart from God and have been dealing with the consequences since. Even so, God did not turn His back on us and has been putting things in motion to bring us back home. The sin, or “missing of the mark” of God’s perfection, in all of us is what separates us from God. Because He is just, He must punish sin and us for breaking His law. Because He is love, He didn’t want us to take that punishment. The love story is that of a God who was making all things right by re-creating that which was lost. A God who entered our world and took the punishment that we deserved upon Himself. A God who gives us forgiveness and new life not on the basis of what we do but on the basis of faith in what He did. A God who, as Ravi says, didn’t come to make bad people good but to make dead people alive. The free gift is salvation through the death and resurrection of His Son Jesus in which sinful mankind is reconciled to a just and loving God. and this new life is His answer to suffering, to broken relationships, and to our sin. Faith in Christ is what gives us new life and hope because it is no longer I who live but He who lives in me through the Holy Spirit. I can now know God more intimately because He now lives in me. This gift of the Holy Spirit is how I know that I am not only forgiven but that He is making me a new person and shaping me into the image of His Son Jesus to now live with Him forever. This is not religion, this is relationship.”

2 Comments

What a great question Lisa! That is a question that people often ask. I think the best way is to go back to the beginning. In essence He did reveal Himself that way but because of sin we lost that relationship with Him. God was revealing Himself in the OT as a Holy God and that part is often overlooked. To have a relationship with a holy and just God, the problem of sin must be taken care of. The law and our inability to follow it pointed to our need for a Savior to restore what was lost. Plus the OT pointed to Jesus too. As far as wars, etc., that is a question often posed by people. The basis of the question is why would a God who is one of love allow such things. The person that asks is assuming morality in that question. They're making a moral judgement based upon what they see and read because they believe that people have intrinsic worth. That's the point of the bible. God was using the Jewish nation to bring forth a Messiah as the salvation of all people because He views us as worthy. The people living around the the Jewish people were commiting awful atrocities that God was right to judge accordingly. Unfortunately, we just don't take sin as seriously as God does. I know that's a lot to take in but feel free to reach out to me. I'd love to talk further!
keith@riversideconnect.com

I like the whole direction you take with regard to 'not a religion, but a relationship.' That makes Christianity more tangible when explaining it to others. I can see how this exercise can really structure one's thoughts for sharing the Gospel, thank you! The hardest part for me is explaining the Old Testament. People often ask me: If God wanted relationship, then why didn't He just reveal Himself that way from the start? Why all the wars and killing of people who did not know Him?

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