…God is the Creator of everything, and everything that God created was good.
God created humanity in His image, and we were good.
God made us to live forever in a good relationship with Him.
God created us to live in a good relationship with each other, and to live in harmony with the world around us.
We can see that there is a problem.
The world is broken.
People get sick.
Things that are alive die.
People hurt other people with their words, actions, and attitudes.
And we know that this is not the way life is supposed to be.
Through the Bible, God has shown us the cause of the problem, and He points us to His provided solution.
God inspired and preserved this truth for us, so we can live the life He created us to experience.
The Bible tells us that God’s good creation was ruined, infected, and broken by evil.
Evil is the absence of goodness.
[Kind of like darkness is the absence of light.]
You were not made to experience evil.
The Bible has a word to describe evil - sin. We have not only experienced sin, but we have all sinned.
God still loves us and wants to give us life - eternal life with Him.
Sin is the problem that must be solved.
Our sin keeps us separate from God.
God is holy and good; we are not because of our sin.
Sin broke our relationship with God, each other, and creation.
The word “sin” comes from the word for ‘missing a target.’
We sin when we put our hope in something other than God.
We sin when we make selfish choices, exploit, or devalue others.
When we behave in these ways, we are missing the point of life
and we are failing to reflect the image and character of God, who created us in His likeness.
God offers us the solution, the cure to sin.
The Bible says,
“For the wages (what we earn or deserve) of sin is death...”
There is good news though, and it is found in the second part of this verse:
“...but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
We cannot earn the gift.
Jesus Christ purchased the gift of eternal life by dying on the cross even though we had earned death because of sin.
Why did Jesus need to die?
When a law is broken there is a consequence.
Jesus did not sin - ever, not even once.
Jesus did not deserve to die, but He chose to die to fulfill justice to take the consequence.
Jesus Christ died on the cross to atone (make amends or reparations) for our sins.
God did not wait for us to start living right or acknowledge our sin.
The Bible says,
“But God demonstrated His own love for us in this:
While we were still sinners,
Christ died for us.”
God loves you so much He does not want sin to ruin your life and keep you from life with Him.
The Bible says,
“Yet to all who did receive Him (Jesus),
to those who believed in His name,
He gave the right to become children of God.”
Jesus makes it possible for you to be the son or daughter of God.
We must receive Jesus as Leader (the Bible uses the word Lord) of our life.
[To be led by Jesus’ example and teaching- not led by sin or selfish desires any more.]
We do this by:
- Receiving Jesus as Forgiver - admit that we have been wrong, selfish, and hurtful towards others
and ask to be forgiven.
- Receiving Jesus as Savior - trust Him to save us from a life as a slave to sin (selfish desires), save us from the consequence of sin, which is death, and save us into life with Him forever.
“Whoever acknowledges me before others,
I will also acknowledge before my Father in heaven.”
People who become followers of Jesus (a.k.a. - Christians) are not ashamed to belong to Jesus. On the contrary, we tell other people about what Jesus did for us and for the rest of humanity.
God is not going to force people into a relationship with Him.
“Here I am! I stand at the door and knock.
If anyone hears my voice and opens the door,
I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me.”
God is not going to kick in the door to your life and force you to be with Him.
He is, however, knocking on the door of your life right now.
God is Sovereign, yet God gives us free will.
Will you open your life to Him?
Will you invite Him into your life?
How do you receive the gift of eternal life?
The Bible gives us clear instructions:
If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,”
and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead,
you will be saved.
- Declare = Tell people that Jesus is the Leader of your life
- Believe = trust that Jesus died on the cross and rose from the dead then you can be saved from sin and death into freedom, forgiveness, and eternal life.
“Repent and be baptized, every one of you,
in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins.
And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.”
- Repent = change your mind that you want a life with God instead of life with sin
- Baptized = The act of surrendering your whole self (mind, body, will, and soul) to Jesus Christ by literally being dunked under water. Baptism is a way of connecting to Jesus’ death, burial and resurrection. Through baptism, we say we are dead to our old life, which was controlled by sin, and alive again with Jesus as our new leader.
- Gift of the Holy Spirit = God’s presence alive in your every day life. God exists in prefect community as Father (Creator), Son (the Savior, Jesus Christ), and Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit empowers Christians to live free from sin, to understand and apply the Bible, and to enable the Church to share the Good News about Jesus Christ.
We believe Baptism is the beginning of a new kind of life.
After you are baptized, you still live in this broken world with death, disease, and sin.
Once you are baptized, you live following Jesus’ example and carrying on Jesus' mission - to seek and save the lost.
“Very truly I tell you,
whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing,
and they will do even greater things than these,
because I am going to the Father.”
He also told His first students (and us today),
“All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. (Jesus is in charge)
Therefore go and make disciples (students of Jesus)
of all nations (every person in the whole world),
in the name of the Father (God the Creator),
the Son (Jesus Christ)
and the Holy Spirit (God’s Presence),
and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you.
And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
This mission was not given to followers of Jesus to do alone.
The Holy Spirit is with us on this mission,
and we carry out this mission in community with other Christians.
This Christian community is called the Church.
There are many churches or congregations around the globe that are a part of the Church;
Intrepid Christian Church is one of them.