The good news is: it is true!
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
I don’t know anything about you, but there is one thing I know you and I have in common: we mess up. We might have all sorts of good intentions, we might make new year resolutions, we might really want to do better, but the truth is we fail. We want to do good and end up giving in to our bad temper, our selfish attitudes, our urges… We might manage to be nice to some people some of the time, but then we get wound up, we lose patience…
The world around us may tell us that it’s ok, it’s normal and we mustn’t feel bad about it. But what does God say? Is it ok with him?
What does your conscience tell you, deep down, when you dare to listen to it?
The Bible says we will all stand before God one day to be judged. How do you think you’ll feel? What will you say? And what will he say?
When you stand before a judge you have to plead guilty or not guilty. The truth is we are all guilty. That’s the bad news.
The good news is this: God loves us and out of this love he decided to do something that sounds unbelievably crazy. He decided to take our punishment, so we won’t have to. He sent his only son, Jesus, to go through what you and I deserve, to go on trial and be given the death penalty even though he wasn’t guilty of anything. He was punished with an excruciating, humiliating, painful death, so that we, who really are guilty, won’t have to be punished for all the bad stuff we have thought and said and done.
So now, thanks to his sacrifice, we – you and me and each and every person on this earth who chooses to believe in what Jesus has done – can receive God’s forgiveness for everything, a clean slate, a chance to start all over again and this time you won’t have to try and do it yourself, you will have God himself helping you. Jesus talked about having to be born of the Spirit – that’s what happens when you choose to turn away from the way you have lived up to now and put your trust in the sacrifice of Jesus on your behalf, determined with his help to live your life God’s way from now on. He has done the really difficult bit – it’s up to you to accept it!
WHAT YOU NEED TO DO
All you need to do is accept God’s gift.
The Bible describes it like this: repent, believe and be baptised.
- repent: decide that you want to stop living your way and start living God’s way from now on, accepting that God’s way is the right way and acknowledging that you have sinned; tell God you’re sorry for all the bad stuff you’ve thought and said and done and that you want to stop that and start a new and better life, living the right way from now on.
- believe: trust God that the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross really is all that you need so that you can have your sins forgiven.
- get baptised: as you go under the water, your old self will be buried, and as you come out of the water you’ll come out to a new life with Jesus, clean not physically but spiritually, purified from all the muck that has stuck to you throughout the years. A completely new start!
God’s amazing offer is free and is available for anyone. No sin too big, no life too messed up. Jesus can deal with anything. Trust him. He’s been doing it for over 2000 years – changing lives!
P.S. But what if I’m Jewish?
You may be reading this and thinking, “That’s all fine but it’s not for me, I’m Jewish.”
Well, so am I.
And, more importantly, so is Jesus, and so were the first people who believed in him.
Find out more at http://www.jewsforjesus.org/answers
or at http://www.shalom.org.uk/library/library.html
So, is this what I meant when I said you’re missing out on the best thing ever? Yes, and no.
The very very best thing? That’s still to come. Putting your faith in Jesus now – it means you get his 100% assurance that you will, when your time comes, get to spend eternity in the very best place – heaven. Putting your faith in Jesus now means you get to live now with the assurance that on the day when all human beings stand before the almighty God and face his judgement, you will be able to say: yes, I sinned but Jesus died in my place – and this is how you will escape God’s righteous judgement.
Putting your faith in Jesus will make a difference to your life now, but the most important difference is that you get to live without the burden of guilt, and without fear of what happens later. You get to live in loving, intimate relationship with the living God, the creator of heaven and earth, and to know that this is forever – way beyond the death of this very temporary body you’re living in right now.
Putting your faith in Jesus means you get adopted into God’s family, it means you get the Holy Spirit to help you and guide you, it means you get forgiveness of all your sins and God himself will help you fight your tendency to sin, it means access to God 24/7 and being able to cry out to him when things are tough, knowing his love for you and never being truly alone ever again. Will he wave a magic wand and make all your problems disappear? No. But he will be with you through it all, and he will carry you even through death, to the good place he has prepared for you.
I could go on… Jesus is wonderful and you need to get to know him. He died for you and he’s waiting for you to get the message, repent, and believe – and start a new life, free from the burden of guilt, knowing God’s love and looking forward to the really best thing ever.
p.s. If you have questions on this, I’d highly recommend finding a local Christian to talk it through with – some things are best done face to face.
(but if you prefer to look for more info online, check out the Got Questions website).