Have You Encountered the Risen Christ?
Have you ever wondered why you were created? Perhaps you have even wondered if you were created. What if there is a purpose for the universe? What if there is someone who created you? (BIBLE READING: Psalm 24; Don’t have a Bible? You can find these Bible references at www.esvonline.org)
The Bible teaches that God created mankind and everything that exists. In fact, the Bible teaches that God made man and woman “In His image.” The image of God sets humans apart from the rest of creation, giving them dominion over the earth and all other creatures. Adam was God’s chosen ruler over the world He had created. God commanded Adam and Eve to be fruitful and multiply and to subdue the earth. In other words, as Adam and Eve ruled creation they were called to create culture.
This shows that God made us for a reason: to cultivate the good world that He made. However, as we look at the world around us it is far from perfect. In fact, the world is bad. We see wars, sickness, hunger, death, and more. Is this the good world God intended? No, because between God’s creation and now the Fall occurred. The Fall is what happened when God’s chosen leader—Adam—and his wife Eve chose to rebel against God’s good plan. God is holy and just, and because of their rebellion He cursed the world. (BIBLE READING: Genesis 1-3)
Adam’s subsequent descendants inherited from him a sin nature. Also, Adam represented all of his descendants when he sinned in the garden. That being the case, we learn that all have sinned and fall short of the Glory of God. God’s curse on the world is evidence that God is angry with sin. God’s infinitely holy nature is offended by sin, therefore it is just for God to dole out infinite punishment. (BIBLE READING: Romans 1-3)
That is bad news, but Gospel means good news. The good news is that, despite our sin, God loves us. This is not a love that ignores sin, for that would violate His justice. Also, God’s love is not passive in a way that He looks on us and is sad about our sin but must punish us anyway. No, God’s love is active. It has been displayed to us through the life, death, and resurrection of God’s Son, Jesus Christ. (BIBLE READING: 1 John 4:7-12)
God’s love is displayed through the life of Jesus Christ in the fact that Jesus is fully God, yet became fully man on our behalf. Jesus lived a sinless life before God. He was fully man and born of a virgin. Therefore, Jesus is the second Adam. The first Adam sinned as man’s representative, yet the second Adam was sinless as man’s representative. (BIBLE READING: Philippians 2; Romans 4-5)
God’s love was also displayed through the death of Jesus. He died in order to fully satisfy God’s justice (a perfect, worthy sacrifice was required for God to remain just) as well as to bring man to peace with God (man can only be justified before God if man’s representative is punished). Because of the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, God’s wrath is no longer on those who place their faith in Him. Jesus, although He died, conquered death through His sinless life. After three days in His grave, He raised from the dead. His body that was cold and dead was resurrected into life. (BIBLE READING: 1 Corinthians 15; John 20)
Jesus is the Son of God, and He has raised from the dead. This has major implications for your life. God created you for His glory, and He can only be known through Jesus Christ. All things were created through, for, and to Jesus Christ. He is the agent of creation, and the savior of creation. Have you encountered the risen Christ? God will not tolerate sin forever. There will come a day when all people will answer to Him for their sins. On that day, will your faith be in Christ? (BIBLE READING: Colossians 1:9-23)
The Bible teaches that you can know God through Christ. We have two options: trust in Christ and live unto God forever, or trust man-made schemes and suffer the wrath of God forever. To be saved, you must repent of your sins and place your faith in the Lord Jesus as your Savior and Lord. Repent of your sin and believe in Jesus! Trust in Christ, He is our only hope.
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