* I could understand "bad" people going to hell, but what kind of a god would condemn the rest of us to such punishment?
* I have been very disappointed by some "religious" people; is it possible to be a Christian without being religious?
The answer to these two critical questions, I discovered, lie together in recorded history. It is only when we muster our courage to take the challenge that God presents us that we are able to clearly see what He is really offering to the people of the earth. What is that challenge? It is to seriously read the pages of the Bible for yourself, to see what it actually says. "Taste and see that the Lord is good," because "All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction and for instruction in righteousness."
As we read the book of Genesis in the front of the Bible, we find God enjoying a walk in the garden with His newly created people, Adam and Eve. Notice that God walked freely with His people on the earth in those days, enjoying their company and the beauty of creation. You and I may never know how precious those days were for God's first people as they walked with Him, because...
They were originally created with a pure mind and moral soul like their Creator. Today, we are still made in the image and likeness of God, but our Creator no longer walks in person on the earth with us. What went wrong? At this point, we must also understand that God is not human. He is a powerful being that did not originate from this planet. His very nature, soul fiber and intelligence are so highly developed that He is in fact, absolutely pure.
At this point, we must also understand that God is not human. He is a powerful being that did not originate from this planet. His very nature, soul fiber and intelligence are so highly developed that He is in fact, absolutely pure. As we read further in Genesis we discover that God had an enemy that imposed imperfection and impurity upon His beloved creation. He did this by successfully enticing Adam and Eve to disobey their Creator. It seems that Satan wanted to gain control of God's creation for himself and separate them from Him. Satan knew that once the purity of God's creation was spoiled, the Creator would no longer walk with his people on the earth in person.
Today, far in the future, we use the word "sin" to describe that separation as the disparity between our present human nature and that of our Designer. Originally, the word "sinner" was used to describe a person who had missed the mark, such as an archer who had missed with his arrow.Originally, the word "sinner" was used to describe a person who had missed the mark, such as an archer who had missed with his arrow.So what is it that we modern humans have missed? Clearly, we have lost the purity, or that moral part of us that God designed to be like Himself. In other words, God's highest goal for us is that we could still have His pure character within us; He calls this purity "Holiness or Christ likeness."
Consider for a moment, a child who is born to a mother with AIDS. The child has no power over the fact that he is born with a disease that will cause his death. This child, like us, is born under the judgment of death, a result of the disease passed down from his mother. Sin is the same, in that it is passed down from Adam and Eve, our original parents, to all humankind so that we are also born under a judgment (curse) of death. God's own law teaches that we cannot be free of sin without the cleansing of a blood atonement, (a compensation or kind of purchase). Sadly, "Men loved the darkness of sin rather than the light of doing right." We have all rebelled against our Creator in this way, which again keeps us from our loving God, our blessing, and our inheritance in Him.
Now, because of the sin we are born with along with the sin we consciously choose to do, people are barred from heaven and separated from God. In reality, we are quite simply being quarantined here upon the earth until a time when the world is finally destroyed by fire! This is not God's fault and it is not our choice. What do we do? Can we then earn our salvation? Or have we no hope at all?
The Scriptures tell us that when we believe in Christ Jesus and invite Him into our lives, the original curse of sin and spiritual death is now broken! The Scriptures say, "The law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has now made us free from the law of sin and death." By taking our sins upon Himself when He was crucified on the cross, Christ has made our cleansing possible by removing the curse that separated us from Him. Do you remember God saying, "While you and I were yet sinners, Christ died for us?" "Christ died for our sins, once for all, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you and me to God." Then, because Jesus was resurrected (raised to life) and now sits at the right hand of the Father in heaven, His children can also be assured of life after death.Now, if you have become aware that you are in need of God's saving grace and have believed that Jesus paid for your sin, pray and ask Him for forgiveness and invite Him to be your own personal Lord and Saviour (He wants to be personal). Once you have made that commitment, you are then a Christian. Congratulations, you are one of the sons or daughters of God, part of the family of God and of the glorious inheritance that we are promised from our Heavenly Father!
Read your Bible every day, find a good Bible teaching church and join your church family for worship on Sunday. Study to please the Lord; He paid a great and terrible price for you. It is the least we all can do for Him.May the Lord bless you in your journey as you walk with the King of kings