WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT YOUR RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD.
I could ask you, “What do you think your relationship with God is?”. You probably have an answer. But I am not going to ask you that, because it has little to no value when compared with what God says about your relationship. Therefore, that is what we are going to look at, what does God say in His Word, the Bible, about our relationship with Him?
You Have Sinned
God set the standard in Matthew 5:48, “Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.” You fall short of that standard.
What is sin? The Bible defines sin this way in I John 3:4, “Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law.” Sin has been described as a nonconformity to God’s Character (as revealed in His law) in act or nature. Sin is either not doing what God says to do, doing what God says not to do, or not being what God says to be.
You might think,“But I am not that bad. There are people way worse than me”. Listen to what God has to say about how guilty you are, “For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all.” James 2:10
Does the Bible really say you are a sinner? What does the Bible say is sin and have you really transgressed God’s law? The Bible Says in Matthew 5:21-22 “Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not kill; and whosoever shall kill shall be in danger of the judgment: But I say unto you, That whosoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment: and whosoever shall say to his brother, Raca, shall be in danger of the council: but whosoever shall say, Thou fool, shall be in danger of hell fire.” Have you ever been unjustly angry with your brother? Christ says if you are guilty of unjust anger then you are guilty of murder. We are all guilty of anger at some point, you are guilty. Jesus goes on to say in Matthew 5:27-28 “Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery: But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart.” Have you ever looked at another with lust in your heart? Looked at a man or woman and just let your imagination run wild? The Bible says you are guilty of adultery. The Bible also has this to say in Deuteronomy 6:5, “And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.” again in Matthew 22:37 “Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.” and again in Luke 10:27 “And he answering said, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself”. Have you with every moment of your entire life, loved God with all your heart, soul and mind? The fact is that you, like the rest of us, have broken and continuously break the first and great commandment.
I know that you are a sinner, because the Bible tells us that sin is a universal problem. That simply means that everyone is a sinner. God tells us in Romans 3:10-12 “As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one.” He goes on and in Romans 3:23 gives us this conclusion, “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;”. The Word of God leaves no room for an exception. According to the Bible you have sinned!
The Bible does not merely conclude that you have sinned, it declares that you are a sinner. You are not a sinner because you sin, but rather you sin because you are a sinner. You were born a sinner, it is your very nature. Consider the following verses:
The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it? Jeremiah 17:9
Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me. Psalms 51:5
The wicked are estranged from the womb: they go astray as soon as they be born, speaking lies. Psalms 58:3
But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away. Isaiah 64:6
The Bible says in Romans 5:12-19 Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned: (For until the law sin was in the world: but sin is not imputed when there is no law. Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over them that had not sinned after the similitude of Adam’s transgression, who is the figure of him that was to come. But not as the offence, so also is the free gift. For if through the offence of one many be dead, much more the grace of God, and the gift by grace, which is by one man, Jesus Christ, hath abounded unto many. And not as it was by one that sinned, so is the gift: for the judgment was by one to condemnation, but the free gift is of many offences unto justification. For if by one man’s offence death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ.) Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life. For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous. In simple terms, because Adam sinned sin was passed down by our human heritage. You were born a sinner.
As a sinner you are incapable of pleasing God. God tells us in Romans 8:8, “So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God”. In our natural sinful condition there is absolutely nothing that we can do, that will please God. Certainly you see the position this puts you in. Perhaps you think you are some how working your way to heaven, but God says you never have and never will do anything that pleases Him.
Because we are sinners by nature and incapable of pleasing God, we must know and understand that we are entirely dependent upon God’s Grace. That word “grace” simply means unmerited favour. Anything and everything good we receive from God is based in no merit of our own. John 6:44 “No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.” For us to ever have any kind of relationship with God depends entirely upon Him!
As a Sinner you Deserve and are Headed for Hell
The Bible clearly states in Romans 6:23, “For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” Your life of sin, and the fact of your sinful nature has earned you the wages of sin, which is DEATH.
The Bible presents sin’s just penalty as death, First it speaks of Spiritual death. Ephesians 2:1-3 “And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins; Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience: Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others”. This is the death that Adam experienced when he ate of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil back in the Garden of Eden, it is the death that you are born into in this life. Spiritual death=Spiritual separation from God. Secondly the Bible speaks of Physical death. Hebrews 9:27 “And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment:”. This is the death that we all know is coming. No matter how healthy you are, no matter how young you are no matter how good the doctor is, we all know that we will eventually meet our physical death. Physical death = Separation from this physical world. Thirdly the Bible speaks of the Second Death. Revelation 20:14-15 “And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire”. Second death = Eternal separation from God in the lake of Fire. Revelation 21:8 “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death”. Death and Hell are very real. And they are the just penalty for sinners,”. Romans 3:8-9 “And not rather, (as we be slanderously reported, and as some affirm that we say,) Let us do evil, that good may come? whose damnation is just.” What then? are we better than they? No, in no wise: for we have before proved both Jews and Gentiles, that they are all under sin;”
As we concluded this Section on the subject of your sinfulness I want you to seriously contemplate and answer these three questions:
1. According to the Bible, do you deserve to go to hell?
2. If you were to die right now, where would you go?
3. Do you think God would be fair to send you to Hell?
The Substitutionary Work of Jesus Christ
Jesus Christ the very Son of God said this of Himself in Luke 19:10, “For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.” In Luke 5:31-32 He says, “…They that are whole need not a physician; but they that are sick. I came not to call the righteous but sinners to repentance.” Though our sinfulness leaves us with no hope in ourselves, we can have hope in Jesus Christ and what He has done for us.
God tells us in 2 Corinthians 5:21 “For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.” We can be righteous, something that we had no hope of, because of what Jesus Christ became for us.
Jesus Christ took our sins. 1 Corinthians 15:1-4 “Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain. For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:”. This is the great truth of the Gospel, Jesus Christ died on Calvary’s cross for your sins and mine. He paid the death penalty that your sins demanded, that your sins rightfully earned.
Not only did Jesus Christ take our sins, but He made us righteous. Consider these verses:
For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified. Hebrews 10:14
But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one
with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us
from all sin. 1 John 1:7
And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood, Revelation 1:5
You Must Repent and Believe.
And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel. Mark 1:15
This is the message that Jesus preached. The “gospel” simply means the “Good News” that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried and rose again so that you could be saved.
Question- What does the Lord Jesus command in this verse?
Go back and read it again. The command is to “Repent” and “believe the Gospel”. You can personally receive the payment Christ made on the cross by repentance and faith, and only by repentance and faith!
Let’s consider this word Repentance.
I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish. Luke 13:3
According to the Lord Jesus Christ, without repentance it is absolutely sure that you will perish and go to Hell.
What does repentance look like?
For they themselves shew of us what manner of entering in we had unto you, and how ye turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God; And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come.1 Thessalonians 1:9-10
When these people received the Gospel they turned from their sins, such as idolatry, and they turned to God with the intention of serving Him with their lives and trusting in Jesus Christ. This repentance is not a process of serving and following God or religion, it is an instantaneous decision to forsake sin and come to Christ that results in a lifestyle of service. Consider also:
Say unto them, As I live, saith the Lord GOD, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked; but that the wicked turn from his way and live: turn ye, turn ye from your evil ways; for why will ye die, O house of Israel? Ezekiel 33:11
And when he had called the people unto him with his disciples also, he said unto them, Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. For whosoever will save his life shall lose it; but whosoever shall lose his life for my sake and the gospel’s, the same shall save it. For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? Mark 8:34-36
Repentance requires denying self and being willing to follow Christ as Lord! Repentance results in following Christ, it requires turning from your own way of living and lifestyle.
What do you have to repent of? The answer is different for everyone, but we all have sin, maybe it is adultery, fornication or idolatry (Ancestor worship or false religion). Maybe it is lying, stealing or dishonouring your parents. Maybe it is pride, arrogance or self righteousness! The list could go on and on.
When a person repents and believes they are “born again” John 3:3, which results in a change!
Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. 2 Corinthians 5:17
Christ changes a person from the inside, giving them new desires and freedom from sin. God gives deliverance from the bondage of sin and the ability to choose and follow after righteousness. It is Salvation that gives us the power to obey and follow God, it is NOT our obedience that gives us salvation.
Now let us consider what it means to believe or as it is elsewhere called,”faith”.
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. John 3:16-18
If you are unfamiliar with that passage go back and read it a couple of times. According to the verses above, what is it that you must do if you are to receive everlasting life? The answer is, believe. Salvation is simply a matter of trusting the Lord Jesus, of fully depending upon the price the risen Lord and Saviour paid upon the cross.
For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast. Ephesians 2:8-9
Salvation has nothing to do with our merit and our good works, we can not earn our way to heaven, the Scriptures have declared it can be only by Grace!
And if by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then is it no more grace: otherwise work is no more work. Romans 11:6
We cannot say that we are saved by Grace while we try to work for it! If you are trusting in your good works, if you are trusting in your church membership, if you are trusting in your baptism, if you are trusting in your walking an aisle at some evangelistic meeting, then you are trusting in works and you do not have Bible salvation! Bible salvation is not by works, but by Grace!
What shall we say then that Abraham our father, as pertaining to the flesh, hath found? For if Abraham were justified by works, he hath whereof to glory; but not before God. For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness. Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt. But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness. Even as David also describeth the blessedness of the man, unto whom God imputeth righteousness without works, Saying, Blessed are they whose iniquities are forgiven, and whose sins are covered. Blessed is the man to whom the Lord will not impute sin. Romans 4:1-8
Abraham and David were both great men, who did very good things, but the testimony of both gives credit for Salvation to believing God, not their works!
Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law. Romans 3:28
“Okay”, you say, “I understand. I want to repent and believe what do I do now?” Christ uses an Old Testament story to illustrate how we come to Christ.
And the people spake against God, and against Moses, Wherefore have ye brought us up out of Egypt to die in the wilderness? for there is no bread, neither is there any water; and our soul loatheth this light bread. And the LORD sent fiery serpents among the people, and they bit the people; and much people of Israel died. Therefore the people came to Moses, and said, We have sinned, for we have spoken against the LORD, and against thee; pray unto the LORD, that he take away the serpents from us. And Moses prayed for the people. And the LORD said unto Moses, Make thee a fiery serpent, and set it upon a pole: and it shall come to pass, that every one that is bitten, when he looketh upon it, shall live. And Moses made a serpent of brass, and put it upon a pole, and it came to pass, that if a serpent had bitten any man, when he beheld the serpent of brass, he lived. Numbers 21:5-9
And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up: That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life. John 3:14-15
Having read the story, consider these questions.
Would they have been saved by going to the Tabernacle and offering a sacrifice?
Would they have been saved by praying fervently for healing?
Would they have been saved by doing many good deeds to make up for their sin?
Would they have been saved by being Religious?
Would they have been saved by asking God to forgive their sin when they committed them?
Would they have been saved by trying not to sin and trying to do good?
The Answer is NO! God had provided the means for their salvation and it was the only way. Even so God has provided the means for our Salvation in the Crucifixion of the Lord Jesus Christ. All you have to do is look to the crucified Christ in repentant faith!
I would like to thank you for reading this. I hope that it has been a help and my prayer is that it has led you to a Biblical understanding of your relationship with God and your need of Salvation. I further hope that it has given you a clear understanding of how you can receive that salvation!
May I leave you with a few final thoughts?
(For he saith, I have heard thee in a time accepted, and in the day of salvation have I succoured thee: behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.) 2 Corinthians 6:2
The Scriptures instruct you and I beg you to consider that TODAY is the day of salvation—do not leave this page without turning from your sins to Christ.
No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day. John 6:44
I Trust that God brought you here to hear this message and if He has spoken to you through this message you need to respond, you don’t get to choose when God speaks and when God draws—respond now!
Boast not thyself of to morrow; for thou knowest not what a day may bring forth. Proverbs 27:1
You have no guarantee of tomorrow. That is a simple fact of life—don’t waste this opportunity, come to Christ today.
For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? Mark 8:36
Maybe you think, “I’ll wait, I have things I want to do with my life” Whatever you can or will gain in this life is nothing compared to the risk of losing your soul for all of eternity.
All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out. John 6:37
No matter what your situation is, no matter what sin is in your past, if you will come, Christ will receive you. Believe Him Today!