Don’t you find it odd that the most brutal instrument of death known to man has become very fashionable? Why don’t people wear little guillotines around their necks as they do with crosses? The answer is that Jesus Christ, the Son of God, died on one. This is the reason the cross is so prevalent and has not faded into history. It’s like the story of the caterpillar going into its cocoon (grave) and emerging as a butterfly (resurrection), never again to be bound by this earth. The cross is not only a symbol of death, but even more, one of life and hope because of the role it played in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
Jesus Christ is the most wonderful and exciting person who ever lived and who still lives. He has always existed as God the Son, who along with God the Father and God the Holy Spirit (three Person’s but only one God) created the universe. As creator He has the total right to rule it. All that is good in His creation is merely a reflection of His never ending, infinite goodness. As people He has created what we owe Him is gratitude, obedience and honor.
We must confess, however, that we were all once rebels and members of another kingdom, in which we stood opposed to God’s character and ways. In part we were victims, because this kingdom is ruled over by Satan, who hates all that God created, and especially human beings. He was created by God, but rebelled, and wants to take as much of God’s creation with him to his doom as he can. God has sentenced him to eternal death–an unending torment in hell. But while Satan has done his best to destroy us, we also have been willing participants in a rebellion against God. Oh, not all of us were what you would call evil people. A lot of us would be considered good people in the range of human experience. But God’s standard is perfection, and not one of us has even been able to live in consistency with our own consciences, much less God’s totally holy character. So aware of it or not we followed along with Satan in opposition to God. And if not rescued we would have followed him on to the unending punishment that God designed for him. Everyone is in this predicament until taken out of it by Jesus. And yes, this includes you who are reading this.
But we were rescued–by Jesus. What a heart full of love! We were enemies to His kingdom, but He had compassion on us and came to our rescue! First, the eternal, uncreated God the Son became an actual man, fully identifying with our plight. As a man He lived out the perfection that God requires of any that may commune with Him. Despite His complete perfection he underwent horrible punishment–He died in agonizing torture with His hands and feet nailed to the crossed timbers of a Roman cross. On this basis God made us an incredible offer: He would accept the punishment that Jesus suffered in place of the punishment we deserve. In exchange He would accept the perfect life that Jesus lived as if it were we who lived it. So as far as He is concerned we have the perfection He requires, and can come and live with Him, in His presence — forever!
Truly the most incredible offer of all time–an offer you must not refuse. But sadly the kingdom of Satan, full of darkness as it is, blinded us even to the wonderful attractiveness of God’s generosity. It took God’s Spirit to act on our hearts and minds even to get us to accept this deal! What a great Person God is to help us in our every weakness! By the way, God brought Jesus back to life, and He is now back in heaven where He reigns as our King.
Do you want to accept this same offer? Remember the only way you will ever get out of Satan’s kingdom and eventual doom and enter God’s kingdom is by relying on what Jesus did and what God offers you on that basis. Do you realize that you have lived in rebellion as part of a kingdom that failed to give God his rightful honor and obedience? Would you like to change that, accept God’s offer and enter His kingdom? Do you believe what He says about Jesus’ perfect life and His death in the place of sinful people? Will you trust Him to do what He says? If you truly trust Him in all these things, according to the Bible you have passed from Satan’s kingdom of death into God’s kingdom of eternal life!
Why don’t you tell Him now and establish it with a prayer. If you need some words, try something like this: “Lord God, I confess that I have lived in rebellion to You and have not given you the honor and obedience You deserve. I admit that by Your justice I deserve unending punishment. But I believe that Jesus suffered the punishment of death in my place. And I believe He lived the life of perfection that You require. Thank You for offering me this incredible gift of eternal life. I now accept it with all my heart and owe You eternal gratitude for Your mercy and love for me.”
Now what? Well, we haven’t finished telling you of the benefits of being in his kingdom. God considers us perfect thanks to Jesus life and death on our behalf — but God also has the goal of developing in us the actual perfect character of His Son Jesus. After Jesus returned to heaven He sent us God the Holy Spirit to live in and with all of us who have entered into God’s kingdom. He is a guide and a help to us in getting to know God; understanding, appreciating and following the instructions God has left us in the Bible, and living to please Him.
He has given us a new family, all the others who have also trusted in Jesus and are part of His kingdom. These make up what is called his church. You will find individual expressions of His kingdom in various local churches.
It is also Jesus’ plan for us that we carry on the ministry that He began while here on earth. He allows us to have a part in His work of bringing people into His kingdom. As such we tell people this message, as we are doing on this web page (this message is called “the Gospel,” by the way. Another thing that the Holy Spirit does in us is give us the ability to carry out this ministry. And he does it in different ways as He directs us in different ways. For example, he may direct some to effectively tell the Gospel to people who need to hear it. Others He may direct to give money and resources to help with material needs. Still others He may prompt to pray for relief or healing from sicknesses or injuries, so that God shows His love by answering these prayers. In these and many other ways He enlists the members of His kingdom into His army to carry out His purposes. And each of us gets to be a part of this exciting work! Here at C@C we would be honored to help you learn more about Jesus and how your life can be transformed; you may want to take a look at our Vision, and please contact us, so we can get acquainted.
“Lord God, please help the person reading this to accept this expression of your Gospel, not as a reflection of what we say, but as what you have said. Please open this person’s heart and mind to accept your truth, believe what you have said, and trust in Jesus and what He has done to rescue them from the kingdom of Satan and bring them into Jesus kingdom and give them eternal life from this day forward and forever!”
To learn more about who Jesus Christ is, please check our our Resources page.