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We have small groups that meet to discuss these very things. Please click here to check out the times.
The basic idea is this:
God is love (1 John 4:8).
Love is selfless (1 Corinthians 13)
Love by definition requires something to give to.
God created man to enjoy His love (often shown through grace).(Gen 1)
God created everything for our five senses to be able to interact with. He is so mighty and impressive that when He spoke things into existence two things happened: 1)he made a place that would be please to His creation (it was far more beautiful than the shape we have made it today) 2) everything spoke of a brilliant creator and brought Him glory.(Gen 1)
God made a garden in which man and woman could live to enjoy His presence. He provided everything they would ever need in that garden. He simply wanted them to trust Him. He gave us free will though so He allowed one tree to be in the garden that we could not eat of so we would have the choice at all times to abandon our trust for Him.
So woman is in the garden and the enemy comes as a serpent and says, “Surely you can eat of every tree in the garden (it was a temptation)” She says, “We can eat of any tree except that tree or else we will die” He says, “You won’t die. God just said that because He is holding out on you.”
She sees that it is good and eats of the fruit of that tree. Then gives to Adam, who was with her. Immediately their eyes were open and they realized they were naked. They heard God coming and they hid because they were naked. God asks where they are, and they say they are hiding. He says, “Why are you hiding?””Because we are naked.” He says, ‘Who told you, you were naked?” Then God identifies that they had decided to trust themselves rather than Him.
That’s what happened. Mankind decided to do their own thing rather than trust in God’s love. He just made everything in the world and they decided they could do better.
Then we decide we are going to work in our own power to get back to a good standing with Him when that is the very thing that separated us from Him. Our attempts to reconcile to God actually drives us further from Him because we are trusting ourselves rather than God- that’s called religion.
We cannot get to God, but the good news is that God came to us. He said that He would redeem us Himself. He sent Jesus to take our place and carry all those things that separate us from God and took care of them on the cross. So now we have the opportunity to transfer the trust of our lives from us to God again.
It’s like getting to redo the garden scene. Will we choose our own ability to get to heaven? Or will we choose God’s grace?
There is another story in the Bible that illustrates the story: The prophet Hosea was led by God to go and marry a prostitute names Gomer (not from Andy Griffith). He just forgot her past and married her. Then she leaves him, goes back to prostitution and thinks she is getting a ton of gifts. Turns out those gifts are actually being placed on her tab. She has ran up a tab so high she can never pay it off. She has to live a lifetime of prostitution to even try to pay off the tab. She can’t pay it off. God then tells Hosea, “Go, sell everything you own, and ransom her back.”Hosea does it. Then God says, “Now you know my story.’
God gave the only thing valuable to Him (His Son) to pay off a debt we could never pay ourselves.
Who is Jesus? We have tons more information on who Jesus is in the help section. There is info about who He is, why He is important and how we know He came.
What have I done?
So, we had a debt we could never pay on our own. We have established religions to get to God but even that will never make us righteous. So God gave His Son for us to take care of the sin that keeps us from knowing God.
We no longer go to hell for our sin but for not accepting Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. The choice that has been given to us is the garden choice all over again. Will we choose our own way or trust the Lord to take care of us through His Son.
His one desire is for us to trust Him as He pours His love out on us. If you have not yet transferred the trust of your life from yourself to Him then you need to do that now througha prayer of commitment.
Lord, I know I have sinned and nothing I do will ever make up for that or get me closer to you. I need Jesus and I transfer my trust from myself to Him. Please help me know Jesus better and to believe your promise. Amen.