Introduction to Christianity
Have you ever wondered why...
there is so much brokenness in the world,
so much pain,
so much hurt,
so much anger and violence,
so much corruption and oppression and hatred,
While at the very same time...
there is so much beauty,
so much joy,
so much laughter,
so much kindness and goodness,
so much wonder and peace and love?
For many of us, it just doesn’t seem to make sense. How can these two opposing realities exist in the same world? Where do these things come from, and even more importantly, what can be done to eliminate the first and secure the second? How can I, how can we, find a life filled with beauty and peace and love, and escape living in a world filled with suffering and fear and hate?
Over the centuries, many theories have been put forth to explain these things and to attempt to fix what is obviously wrong with the world in which we live. But while many have tried to explain it, and many have tried to fix it, there is only one satisfying answer: the Christian answer.
The answer of Christianity is the answer that comes to us in the Bible. It explains that all of the good things we see and experience in this world are here because God first created all things good. Goodness is the way things are supposed to be. A good world is the one that we were created to live in. That is why we desire it so badly.
But after God had created all things good, the world was broken by the entrance of sin. Not content to live in trust and obedience to God, our first parents, Adam and Eve, turned instead to the lie of sin, and as they embraced it, they embraced death and pain and suffering – not just for themselves, but for all their children as well.
In short, the world is filled with good because of God and it is filled with bad because of us – because of us and our sin.
But the Christian message doesn’t stop there. It goes on to explain to us that God was not content to leave his perfect creation in this death spiral. He was not content to allow mankind to embrace this death, to allow children to starve and people to get cancer, to allow wars to ravage people’s lives and families to be torn apart. So he did something about it.
He sent his Son to become a man and to fix what was broken. That man was Jesus.
In order to fix that which was broken, Jesus had to pay the penalty for our sin. This he did by facing death for us – the death he died on the cross – so that by his sacrifice God might forgive us. He paid our debt, and bore the punishment that was due to us, that we might go free and escape the death that our sin brings us. All we need to do to receive this forgiveness is to repent of our sin – to acknowledge that we are truly and deeply guilty, to turn away from it, and to turn back to him.
He promises to all who repent of their sin that he will forgive them and lead them to the world to come – the one he will bring back to this earth when he returns.
He could come any time. And he wants to come soon in order to bring the pain to an end. The only reason he is waiting is to give more time for people to repent so that when the end does come, they will rejoice with their Lord rather than face the punishment of God that will come to all who choose to hold on to their sin instead.
Are you a Christian? Is this how you understand the world? Or have you chosen some other explanation? What other explanation can deal with our questions the way this one can?
To learn more about the Christian answer to the realities of this world, contact Pastor John at firstname.lastname@example.org anytime, or call our church office at 269-429-5541. Office hours are Tuesday through Friday 8:30 AM - 4:30 PM.
You are also welcome to join us for our worship services on Sunday mornings at 9:00 AM Sept thru May AND 10:00 AM during the summer months (Memorial Day weekend thru Labor Day weekend). There you will hear more about these truths of God and life!