Everything begins and ends with God

Who am I? Why am I here? What is the point of life? What happens when I die? Why is there so much suffering in the world? Is there a God? How do I know for sure? These are many of the questions that people ask every day. Some people start having these questions as young children, others through life experience start wondering these things as well. We are here to tell you that there are real answers to these questions. We don’t pretend to have the arrogance to say we have come up with them all by ourselves. Rather, we humbly and yet boldly stand within a tradition that goes back to the beginning of all time. Everything begins and ends with God. Not only is there a God, but He is not silent. Unless God would reveal Himself, how could we know Him? Or that He was even a Him? God revealed Himself through divine activity within history and by speaking through His prophets, and ultimately He demonstrated His love and perfection through the likeness of His Son, Jesus, called the Christ—or Messiah. The divine self-revelation, or self-exposé, of God culminates in the written words of the collection of writings called in English the “Holy Bible.”

The Triune God is The Good and Righteous Creator

The Bible begins not by arguing for God’s existence, but by declaring who this good God really is—“In the beginning, God . . . .” At this predetermined point, God created all of the universe, the laws that govern it, in its grandness of space and time, to its minuteness of atom, cell, and organism. As the Creator, He holds the divine right to rule over His creation with absolute sovereignty, or authority. God declared His name audibly to the ancient prophet Moses, “The Lord, the Lord, a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness, keeping steadfast love for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, but who will by no means clear the guilty.” As the creator, and ruler, over the entirety of all existence, He reveals Himself as both loving and righteous. Righteous means that in all that He does God is perfectly just, good, and faithful—He does no evil, nor will he allow evil to go unpunished. We owe our very existence and every breath, desire, thought, wish, and action to our righteous creator.

Humanity has rebelled against their Creator

When God created human beings, He made them like Himself. He gave them the ability to be little creators, thinkers, communicators, choosers, feelers, relators. He also shared some of His divine authority over creation with us. He gave us a stewardship over the created world and its creatures. He also made us both male and female. While God does not have gender the same way that we do, he made humans with two different yet equal and complementary genders. Women reflect the image of God in the same way that men do. God called the universe and the world and its creatures “good,” yet after He formed human beings, He called the entirety of creation “very good.” Human beings are the pinnacle of God’s good creation, which brings with it glory but also great responsibility. How human beings would obey God and manage His creation made eternal difference to God. Since God gave His creatures the freedom to choose, they then had the ability to love and make other meaningful actions. God reveals Himself as the one who tests the faithfulness of His creatures. He gave only one command to the first human beings he created, named “Adam” and “Eve.” Would they obey? What would they choose? Would they love God above all things or choose to love something lesser?

Immediately, the communion and friendship they had with God was broken. They hid from Him, as if God didn’t know every detail of their every second of existence. Their relationship with the rest of creation was also broken. Natural suffering came to characterize human existence, famine, flood, disaster—humanities rebellion changed everything since they were placed over all created things. Their relationship with other people was broken. Complicity in sin led to murder, strife, immorality, and every other wicked deed. The harmony between husband and wife was marred by rebellion. Their relationship with themselves was also damaged. The abilities to choose, create, think, feel, do were all ripped from their moorings. Humanity was to be like a ship adrift in a storm, sails and motor beyond repair, unable to exert real control over oneself. Ultimately, physical death entered the universe, for the first time, in particular for human beings. Men and women would die; their days were numbered.

Because of Adam and Eve’s rebellion against the righteous, creator God, all of humanity after them would be born in a state of rebellion. Not only that, because of the wreckage upon the nature of humanity itself, every human being would willingly comply with this rebellion. This rebellion, this way of life lived in spite of God, is what the Bible calls sin.

Sin is the unrighteous state into which all human beings are born. It is also the continuous state that human beings find themselves in—loving God’s creation more than God Himself, serving the desires and whims of the human heart, forsaking God’s righteous commands.

The Bible says “no one is righteous, no not one” and that “all have sinned and fall short of God’s glory.”

God has determined that such rebellion deserves grave and eternal consequences. His righteous indignation burns justly against humanity. We have all committed eternal sins, since every sin is an act of willful rebellion against an eternal God.

In monetary terms, when we work, we receive wages, or a salary. All of our thoughts, desires, deeds will receive their due salary from God. Since we are rebels, such a salary is rightly eternal condemnation. We owe God our very existence.

God has provided Redemption through Jesus by Faith and Repentance. 

God directs all of history towards His predetermined ends. God also powerfully superintends even the rebellious actions of free creatures. On the day that Adam and Eve seemingly wrecked the future of the human race, God made a promise. One day, at the proper time, He would send an “offspring”, a child, of a woman, who would crush the plans of the deceiver, whom we call Satan, and who would redeem the human race from the just and righteous consequences of sin. When the prophets began recording the words that God was revealing to them by His Holy Spirit to write down as Scripture, over a period of 1,600 years, writing in three different languages, some 40 different authors, prophesied about this coming child.

We learn His lineage through Abraham, through his great-grandson Judah, through his descendant David, to a young virgin named Mary. Every detail of this child’s life was foretold. Also foretold was the purpose for His coming. He would bear the sins of His people, he would be killed for their sins even though he was righteous and sinless. The prophets foretold that this child would reign as place of God almighty, with a kingdom that never ended.

The New Testament reveals the identity of this real, historical human being. His name is Jesus. His name when translated literally means “savior.” In his life, Jesus was perfectly obedient to His God the Father. He was led in everything he did, even to his death, by God the Holy Spirit. In Jesus, the triune God is revealed. He never sinned, even though he was tempted in every way a human being can be tempted. As a human being, he stood in the place of every other person who has ever lived. Yet, as God, He held the power and authority to forgive sin and defeat death.

Jesus was put to death by the Roman and Jewish authorities who feared his power and influence, but what they intended for evil, God intended for good. Because of humanities sin, God poured out his righteous fury against sin upon Jesus. He made atonement. He was a willing sacrifice, upon whom sins are placed, and by whose blood sins are forgiven. In this act, the wrath of God against sin was appeased for all those who would repent and believe.

Three days after dying, Jesus was physically resurrected. His body was transformed into a glorious body, but it was still a physical human body. As a man, he became the first of all humanity to be resurrected into glory. The promise for resurrection remains for all those who will repent and believe.

We have willfully rebelled against our Creator. We are justly under his condemnation. Jesus, however, took our sin and its righteous punishment upon Himself and conquered them through His death and resurrection. What then remains?

Will all human beings be saved from the coming judgment? Will you be spared God’s eternal wrath?

God simply asks that we repent and believe. To repent means literally to turn around. Think of a path winding through a narrow mountain pass. That path is your life. It goes somewhere. Will it lead you up the mountain? Down the mountain? Off a cliff? You can’t see clearly because on either side, before and behind are mountains and cliffs.

Contrary to popular belief, all paths do not lead to the top. When the early settlers were moving through the Great Plains, over the Rockies, the Sierra-Nevadas, to California, many paths led over the mountains. Some were longer, some shorter. Many looked for shortcuts only to be trapped for winter and die of starvation, sometimes only three days journey from their destination. Henry Hudson was abandoned by his crew along the bay that bears his name, where he then died, because he could not find a northwest passage from England to the Pacific Ocean.

Starting from yourself, going towards an unknown destination, you are likely to get lost. When that destination is eternal, ultimate, and metaphysical, how can that which is finite, limited and physical find its way? We are lost.

“Broad is the path that leads to destruction.”

The good news is that a map has to be made, and that came from God. We cannot save ourselves from certain death. But God, in His love, is powerful and mighty to save. More than that, He is willing.

Only we have to return from the man-made paths we daily tread. We have to turn around.

This means confessing our sinfulness before God and our many sins we commit daily. This also means repudiating, hating, and rejecting our sinful rebellion. This takes faith.

God is asking us to go “all-in” with our lives. We must place our full life-allegiance upon Jesus.

This means trusting that He will not punish you for your sins because you believe that God punished Jesus instead, and trusting that upon the last day, instead of being place under God’s wrathful condemnation for all eternity, through Jesus and like Jesus, God will raise you back from the dead in glory.

Will you turn away from the rebellion and trust in God’s beautiful salvation through Jesus?

You owe Him your very existence.