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WHYJESUS? DR.JIMDENISON FAITHQUESTIONS RESOURCELIBRARY LOVEGOD FIRST15 SUBSCRIBE STORE SEARCH...

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WHY JESUS?
Category:Jesus Published:Thursday,27October201114:01 WrittenbyJimDenison

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Article Index
YoucanknowGodpersonally.TheCreatoroftheuniversemadeyouandwantsanintimaterelationshipwithyou.Theway
toknowtheFatheristhroughhisSon:"Iamthewayandthetruthandthelife.NoonecomestotheFatherexcept MeetJesus
throughme"(John14:6).HowcanyoumeetJesusforyourself?
WhoisJesus?
WhoisJesus?
DidJesusexist?

ThemostimportantquestioninhumanhistoryistheoneJesusaskedhisfollowers20centuriesago:"WhodoyousayI IsJesusreallyGod?
am?"(Matthew16:15).MuslimsbelievethatJesuswasbornofavirgin,livedasinlesslife,ascendedtoheavenandwill
IstheBiblereallytrue?
returntoourplanetattheendofhistorybuttheydonotbelievethathewasdivine.ManyBuddhistsandHindusviewhim
asanenlightenedteacher.ManyJewsseehimasabrilliantrabbi. Aren'tallreligionsthesame?

WhydoyouneedJesusinyourlife?
HowdidJesusseehimself?
HowcanyoumeetJesuspersonally?
InrecentyearsmanypeoplehaveclaimedthatJesussawhimselfonlyasareligiousteacher,andthattheChurchdeified
himoverthecenturies.Notaccordingtotheeyewitnesses.WhenJesusstoodontrialforhislife,thehighpriestchallenged Howcanyouknowyou'reaChristian?
him:"IchargeyouunderoathbythelivingGod:TellusifyouaretheChrist,theSonofGod"(Matthew26:63).His
answersealedhisfate:"Yes,itisasyousay"(v.64).Earlierhetoldhisopponents,"BeforeAbrahamwasborn,Iam!"(John8:58).Heclearlyclaimedtobe
God.

Jesustoldhisenemies,"'MyFatherisalwaysatworktothisveryday,andI,too,amworking.'ForthisreasontheJewstriedallthehardertokillhimnot
onlywashebreakingtheSabbath,buthewasevencallingGodhisownFather,makinghimselfequalwithGod"(John5:1718).Laterhetaughthis
disciples,"Iamthewayandthetruthandthelife.NoonecomestotheFatherexceptthroughme"(John14:6).

C.S.Lewiswasoneofthemostbrilliantmenofthe20thcentury.Aconvertedatheist,helaterwrotethesewordsaboutJesus:

IamtryingheretopreventanyonesayingthereallyfoolishthingthatpeopleoftensayaboutHim:'I'mreadytoacceptJesusasagreatmoralteacher,butIdon't
acceptHisclaimtobeGod.'Thatistheonethingwemustnotsay.AmanwhowasmerelyamanandsaidthesortofthingsJesussaidwouldnotbeagreatmoral
teacher.HewouldeitherbealunaticonalevelwiththemanwhosaysheisapoachedeggorelsehewouldbetheDevilofHell.Youmustmakeyourchoice.
Eitherthismanwas,andis,theSonofGod:orelseamadmanorsomethingworse.YoucanshutHimupforafool,youcanspitatHimandkillHimasademonor
youcanfallatHisfeetandcallHimLordandGod.ButletusnotcomewithanypatronizingnonsenseaboutHisbeingagreathumanteacher.Hehasnotleftthat
opentous.Hedidnotintendto(MereChristianity[NewYork:Macmillan,1943]556).

Jesus'firstfollowersacceptedhisclaimtobeGod.PeterandtheotherapostlesrefusedtostoppreachingthatJesusisLord,evenwhenthreatenedwiththeirlives
(cf.Acts5:2932).EachdiscipleexceptJohnwasmartyredforhisfaithinChrist,andJohnwasexiledtotheprisonislandofPatmosforpreachingthatJesusis
God.BillionsofpeopleacrosstwentycenturieshavebelievedthatJesusistheonlywaytoheaven,forheisourSaviorandLord.

DidJesusexist?

TheBiblesaysthatJesusexistedandthatheistheSonofGod.ButtheQur'ansaysthatheisnomorethanaman.BuddhistandHinduwritingssupporttheirnon
Christianbeliefs.Nearlyallfaithshaveabookwhichclaimsthattheirreligionistrue.

IfwedidnothavetheNewTestament,whatcouldwelearnaboutJesus?First,let'slookattheearlynonChristianhistoricalrecords:

ThallustheSamaritan(A.D.52)wroteaworktracingthehistoryofGreecefromtheTrojanWartohisownday.Initheattemptstoexplainthedarknessofthe
crucifixionofJesusasaneclipseofthesun.ThisistheearliestnonChristianreferencetoJesus'existenceanddeath.

MarabarSerapion(writingafterA.D.70,ashedescribestheFallofJerusalem)adds:"WhatadvantagedidtheJewsgainfromexecutingtheirwiseKing?It
wasjustafterthattheirkingdomwasabolished."HisletterisondisplayintheBritishMuseumtoday.ItshowsthatthefirstChristianssawJesusnotjustasa
religiousteacher,butastheirKing.

TheRomanhistorianSuetonius(AD65135)laterrecords,"PunishmentswerealsoinflictedontheChristians,asectprofessinganewandmischievous
religiousbelief"(Nero16.2).NotethattheEmpirewouldnotpunishpeoplewhofollowedareligiousteacher,onlyonewhomadehimLordinplaceofCaesar.

Tacitus(AD55120)wasthegreatestancientRomanhistorian.AroundAD115hewrites,"Christus...sufferedtheextremepenaltyduringthereignof
Tiberiusatthehandsofoneofourprocurators,PontiusPilatus,andamostmischievoussuperstitionbrokeout"(AnnalsXV.44).HisdescriptionofChristian
beliefas"superstition"makesclearthefactthatTacitusconsideredthefollowersofChristustobelievesomethingsupernaturalormiraculous,notsimplythathe
wasagreathumanteacher.
PlinytheYoungerwasaRomanadministratorandauthor,governorofBithyniainAsiaMinortwovolumesofhislettersareextanttoday.Thetenthofhis
correspondencebooks(writtenca.AD112)containstheearliestnonbiblicaldescriptionofChristianworship:"Theywereinthehabitofmeetingonacertain
fixeddaybeforeitwaslight,whentheysanginalternateversesahymntoChristastoagod."NotethatbelieversworshipedChristasGodinAD112,not
centurieslateraftertheirbeliefs"evolved,"assomecriticsclaim.

FlaviusJosephus,thenotedJewishhistorian(AD37/3897),records:"AnaniascalledaSanhedrintogether,broughtbeforeitJames,thebrotherofJesuswho
wascalledtheChrist,andcertainothers...andhecausedthemtobestoned"(Antiquities20.9.1).ThustheChristianscalledJesustheChrist,theMessiah.

Finally,considerJosephus'mostfamousstatementaboutJesus(Antiquities18.3.3):"Now,therewasaboutthistime,Jesus,awiseman,ifitbelawfultocall
himaman,forhewasadoerofwonderfulworks,ateacherofsuchmenasreceivethetruthwithpleasure.HedrewovertohimbothmanyoftheJews,and
manyoftheGentiles.HewasChristandwhenPilate,atthesuggestionoftheprincipalmenamongstus,hadcondemnedhimtothecross,thosethatlovedhim
atthefirstdidnotforsakehim,forheappearedtothemaliveagainthethirdday,asthedivineprophetshadforetoldtheseandtenthousandotherwonderful
thingsconcerninghimandthetribeofChristians,sonamedfromhim,arenotextinctatthisday."Whilemosthistoriansdonotbelievethatthisparagraph
representsJosephus'sownfaithcommitment,itdoesdocumentthebeliefsoftheearliestChristiansregardingJesus.Notethatitwaswrittenbeforetheendof
thefirstcentury.

Now,let'sconsiderearlyChristianbeliefs,allrecordedinthefirstgenerationsfollowingJesus'earthlyministry.

TheDidache,writtenbeforeAD100,repeatedlycallsJesus"theLord."Itendsthus:"TheLordshallcomeandallhissaintswithhim.Thenshalltheworld'see
theLordcomingonthecloudsofHeaven'"(16.78).

ClementofRome,writinginAD95,repeatedlyreferstothe"LordJesusChrist."Andhepromisesa"futureresurrection"onthebasisofhis"raisingtheLord
JesusChristfromthedead"(24.1).

Ignatius,writingbetweenAD110and115,refersto"JesusChristourGod"(introductiontohislettertotheEphesians).TotheSmyrnaeansheadds,"Igive
glorytoJesusChrist,theGodwhohasthusgivenyouwisdom"(1.1).

JustintheMartyr(ca.AD150),repeatedlyreferstoJesusastheSonofGod(cf.Apol.22).HedescribesthefactthatGodraisedhimfromthedeadand
broughthimtoheaven(Apol.45).

ThesestatementswereallmadeaboutJesusgenerationsbeforetheChurchsupposedlydeifiedhim.ThefirstenemiesofChristianitytriedtodismisshisdivinity,
butnooneeverdeniedthatheexisted.TherecanbenohistoricalquestionthatJesuslived,andthathisfirstfollowersworshipedhimastheirGodandLord.

IsJesusreallyGod?

AfterGoodFriday,Jesus'disciplesassumedtheirleaderwasdeadandgone.AfterEasterSunday,theyweretransformedandbeganwinningtheworldtoJesus.
Theresurrectionchangedtheirlives,provingthatJesusreallywasandisGod.

TheBibleteachesthatJesus'resurrectionisthefoundationoftheChristianfaith:

Ifthereisnoresurrectionofthedead,thennotevenChristhasbeenraised.AndifChristhasnotbeenraised,ourpreachingisuselessandsoisyourfaith.
Morethanthat,wearethenfoundtobefalsewitnessesaboutGod,forwehavetestifiedaboutGodthatheraisedChristfromthedead"(1Corinthians15:13
15).

IsthereobjectiveevidencethatJesusrosefromthedead?

DavidHumewasan18thcenturyScottishphilosopher,knowntodayasthe"FatherofSkepticism."Hemadeithislife'sworktodebunkassumptionswhichhe
consideredtobeunprovable,amongthemtheveracityofmiracles.Hearguedforsixcriteriabywhichweshouldjudgethosewhoclaimtohavewitnesseda
miracle.Theyshouldbe:

Numerous

Intelligent

Educated

Ofunquestionedintegrity

Willingtoundergoseverelossifprovenwrong

Theirclaimsshouldbecapableofeasyvalidation(AnEnquiryConcerningHumanUnderstanding[LaSalle,Illinois:OpenCourt,1966]1289).

HowdothosewhoclaimedtoseetherisenChriststackupbythesestandards?

Theywerenumerous:over500sawtheresurrectedLord(1Corinthians15:6).Theywereintelligentandwelleducated,astheliteraturetheyproducedmakesclear
(theActs4:13claimthattheywere"unschooled,ordinarymen"meantonlythattheyhadnotattendedrabbinicschools).PaulwastrainedbyGamaliel,thefinest
scholarinJudaism(Acts22:3).Theyweremenandwomenofunquestionedintegrity,clearlywillingtoundergosevereloss,asprovenbytheirmartyrdoms.And
theirclaimswereeasilyvalidated,aswitnessedbytheemptytomb(cf.Acts26:26,"thisthingwasnotdoneinacorner").

Sothewitnesseswerecredible.Butisthereobjectiveevidencefortheirclaims?ItisafactofhistorythatJesusofNazarethwascrucifiedandburied,andthaton
thethirddayhistombwasfoundempty.Skepticshavetriedtoexplaintheemptytombeversince.

Theearliestexplanationwasthatwhilethesoldiersguardinghistombslept,thedisciplesstolethebodyofJesus(Matthew28:1115).Buthowwouldsleeping
guardsknowtheidentityofthethieves?Howcouldthedisciplesconvince500peoplethatthecorpsetheystolewasalive?Andwhywouldthesedisciplesthendie
forwhattheyknewtobealie?

Asecondapproachclaimsthatthewomenstolethebody.Buthowwouldtheyoverpowertheguards?Howwouldtheymakeacorpselookalive?Whywouldthey
sufferanddieforsuchafabrication?
Athirdexplanationisthattheauthoritiesstolethebody.Then,whenthemisguideddisciplesfoundanemptytomb,theyannouncedarisenLord.Butwhywouldthe
authoritiesstealthebodytheyhadstationedguardstowatch?AndwhentheChristiansbeganpreachingtheresurrection,wouldn'ttheyquicklyproducethecorpse?

Afourthapproachisthewrongtombtheorythegriefstrickenwomenandapostleswenttothewrongtomb,founditempty,andbeganannouncingthatJesushad
risenfromthegrave.Butthewomensawwherehewasburied(Matthew27:61)JosephofArimatheawouldhavecorrectedtheerror(Matthew27:5761)andthe
authoritieswouldhavegonetothecorrecttombandproducedthecorpse.

Afifthexplanationisthe"swoontheory."Accordingtothisview,Jesusdidnotactuallydieonthecross.Heorhisfollowersbribedthemedicalexaminerto
pronouncehimdead,thenherevivedinthetombandappearedtoberesurrected.Buthowdidhesurviveburialclotheswhichwouldhavesuffocatedhim?Howdid
heshoveasidethestoneandoverpowertheguards?Howdidheappearthroughwalls(John20:19,26)andascendtoheaven(Acts1:9)?

Thereisonlyonereasonableexplanationfortheemptytomb,thechangedlivesofthedisciples,andtheovernightexplosionoftheChristianmovementuponthe
worldstage:JesusChristrosefromthedead.Heisthereforethepersonheclaimedtobe:ourLordandGod.Hewasjustifiedinmakingthemoststupendousclaim
inhumanhistory,onenooneelsehasmadeinallofrecordedhistory:"Allauthorityinheavenandonearthhasbeengiventome"(Matthew28:18).The
resurrectionshowsusthatJesusisGodandLord.

IstheBiblereallytrue?

TheBibleclaimsthat"allScriptureisGodbreathed"(2Timothy3:16),meaningthatitswordsarethedivinerevelationofGod.Butnearlyallreligionspossess
bookswhichmakesuchclaims.IsthereobjectiveevidencethattheBibleisreallytrue?

Historiansaskthreequestionsinstudyinganyancientbook.

First:dowepossessanaccuratecopyofthetext?TheoriginalmanuscriptsdonotexistforanybookwrittenbeforethefourthcenturyoftheChristianera.Wedo
nothavetheoriginalwritingsofPlato,Aristotle,Tacitus,oranyotherancientwriter.Booksintheirerawerewrittenonmaterialswhichdidnotsurvivethepassage
oftime.

Butwehavecopies,someinfragmentsandothersincompletebookform."Textualcritics"arescholarswhostudythesecopies,seekingtoproduceamanuscript
asclosetotheoriginalaspossible.ThosewhoworkonthetextsoftheOldandNewTestamentsbelievethattheBiblewepossesstodayisvirtuallyidenticaltothe
originalmanuscripts.Theonlyquestionswhichremainaffectmattersofspelling,punctuation,andisolatedverses.Nonerelatestofaithpracticesoressential
doctrines.

Second:doarchaeologicaldiscoveriesconfirmthebookinquestion?Archaeologistshavemadehundredsofdiscoveriesverifyingthebiblicalrecord.For
instance,thePoolofBethesdamentionedinJohn5:2wasoncedismissedbyskepticsasnonhistorical,beforearchaeologistsfoundit.I'veseentheruinsmyself.
WenowpossessastoneinscriptiondocumentingthelifeandworkofPontiusPilate,theRomanofficialwhosentencedJesustobecrucified.Wehavethecoffinof
Caiaphas,theHighPriestwhocondemnedhimtodie.WehaveaninscriptionwhichdescribestheworkofGallio,aRomanofficiallivinginCorinth(Acts18:1217).
SuchdiscoveriesallconfirmthetrustworthinessoftheBible.

Third:ifthebookmakespredictions,havetheybeenfulfilled?TheOldTestamentcontainsmorethan50promisesregardingtheMessiahtocomeJesus
fulfilledeveryoneofthem.TheBibleclearlykeepsitspromises.

ObjectiveevidencesaysthatyoucantrusttheBible.Butthebestwaytoknowifitistrueistotestitsclaimspersonally.Youknowacarrepairmanualcanbe
trustedifitworksinrepairingyourcar.Acookbookisprovenbythemealsitsproduces.WhenyoumeetJesuspersonally,youwilldiscoverthatheiswhotheBible
saysheis.AndthattheBiblereallyisthetrustworthywordofGod.

Aren'tallreligionsthesame?

WecanbelievethatJesusexisted,thatheisdivine,andthattheBibleistrustworthy.ButwhatmakesJesustheonlywaytoGod,asheclaimed(John14:6)?Don't
allreligionsleadupthesamemountaintothesameGod?WhydoweneedtotrustinJesustogotoheaven?

Somepeoplesaythatobjectivetruthdoesnotexist,sotheclaim"JesusisLord"ismerelypersonalandsubjective.ButifIsay,"Thereisnosuchthingas
absolutetruth,"haven'tImadeanabsolutestatement?WebelievethattheHolocaustand911wereobjectivelywrong.Objectivetruthisanintellectualand
practicalnecessityinlife.

Otherpeoplesaythatallreligionsteachthesametruth.ButBuddhataughtthatthereisnopersonal"god"(despitethefactthatsomeofhisfollowersnowworship
him).Hindusbelieveinthousandsofindividualdeitiesbutno"Lord"oftheuniverse.MuslimsbelievethatAllah(theArabicwordforGod)istheonesupremerulerof
theuniverseandthattheTrinityisblasphemy.JewsbelievethatGodrevealedhimselfthroughtheLawsandProphetsoftheirScriptures,thatJesuswasnotthe
Messiah,andthattheNewTestamentisnotthewordofGod.AndChristianssaythatJesusistheonlywaytotheFather.

Ifanyoneofthesereligionsisright,theothersmustbewrong.Nonebelievesthatotherreligionsareequallycorrectordivinelyinspired.Theholywritingswhichthe
variousworldreligionstrustdonotdescribedifferentpathsupthesamemountain,butverydifferentmountains.

NootherfaithrestsonhistoricalevidenceascompellingasthatwhichexistsforChristianity.Nootherreligiousleaderwasraisedfromthedeadnootherancient
religiousbookpossessesthekindofmanuscript,archaeological,andpropheticevidencewhichtheBiblecanclaim.IfJesusisalive,thenheisLordandGod.And
wecantrusthimtobeourLordandourGod.

WhydoyouneedJesusinyourlife?

WeknowJesusexisted,theBibleistrustworthy,andJesus'claimtobeGodisbackedupbyevidenceandreason.Now,whydoyouneedhimpersonally?What
willhedoforyouthatnooneelsecan?

TheBiblediagnosesourproblem:"AllhavesinnedandfallshortofthegloryofGod"(Romans3:23).Ifyou'retheexception,theonepersonwhohasneverlied
orcheatedorhadanimmoralthought,I'dliketomeetyouandlearnhowyoudidit.Therestofusknowthatwe'vemademistakesandsinned.Sowhat?"The
wagesofsinisdeath,butthegiftofGodiseternallifeinChristJesusourLord"(Romans6:23).Godcannotletmysinsintohisperfectheaven,oritwouldn't
beheavenanylonger.Mysinsmustbepunished,mydebtpaid.

ThisiswhyJesuscame:todieinourplace,takingourpunishmentonhimself(seeIsaiah53:5,12).Nooneelseinallofhumanhistoryhasdonethis,orcoulddo
it.Everyotherpersonhassinned,sothattheyowedtheirowndebttoGod.OnlyJesuslivedaperfect,sinlesslife(Hebrews4:15),sohehadnodebttopay.He
coulddieforus,takingourplaceandpurchasingoursalvation.Hethenrosefromthedeadtoprovehisdivinity,andtoshowusthatwewouldliveafterdeathwith
himinparadise(John14:16).

YouneedJesusinyourlifesothatyoursinscanbeforgivenandyoucanspendeternityinheaven.Heistheonlyonewhocangiveyouthisgift.Buteverygift,
evenonewhichcomesfromGod,mustbeopened.

HowcanyoumeetJesuspersonally?

IfyoubelievethatJesusistherisenLordandhiswordistrue,youarereadytomeethimpersonally.Youcannowopenthegiftofsalvationhediedtogiveyou.

ThesearethebiblicalfactswhichmakeitpossibleforyoutohaveapersonalrelationshipwithGod:

1.Godlovesyou.
Hecreatedyouandwantstohaveapersonalrelationshipwithyounowonearthandeternallyinheaven(John3:16Ephesians2:45).

2.SinhasseparatedyoufromGod.
TheBibledefines"sin"aschoosingourwilloverGod's.Wehaveeachmadethismistake(Romans3:23).OursinshavenowseparatedusfromourholyGod,and
hecannotallowusintohisperfectheaven.Instead,weareeachdestinedforaneternityseparatedfromGodinhell(Revelation19:1921).

3.YoucannotrepairyourbrokenrelationshipwithGod.
ManypeoplethinkwecanbegoodorreligiousenoughtoearnGod'sforgivenessandgotoheavenwhenwedie.ButtheBibleteachesthattheonlypaymentforsin
isdeath(Romans6:23Ezekiel18:20).Someonemustdieforthesinswehavecommitted.

4.Jesusdiedtopaythedebtowedbyyoursins.
SinceJesuswassinlessandowednodebttoGod,hisdeathcouldpayforoursins.Hetookourplaceonthecrossandsufferedthepenaltywedeserved.His
deathnowmakesitpossibleforarighteousGodtoforgiveoursinsandofferussalvation(Romans5:82Corinthians5:211Peter2:24).

5.Youmustreceivethegifthediedtogive.
NowyoumustchoosetotrustinwhatJesushasdoneforyouratherthantrustinginyourowneffortstorestoreyourrelationshipwithGod.Infaith,relycompletely
onJesustomakeyourightwithGod.ConfessyoursinsandmistakestoGod,andchoosetolivebyhiswordandwill.DecidethatyouwillmakeJesustheLord
andMasterofyourlife.

Howcanyoumakethisdecision?ThroughprayeryoucanmeetJesustoday.ThereisnosingleprayeryoumustpraytobecomeaChristian,nomagicformula,but
thefollowingwordsareonewaytotrustChristasLord.TheyaretheprayerIofferedtoGodonSeptember9,1973,whenIfirsttrustedinJesusasmySavior.If
youwillpraythemwiththesincerecommitmentofyourheartandlife,youwilljoinmeinknowingJesuspersonallyandlivingforhimasyourLord.

DearGod,

Thankyouforlovingme.ThankyouthatJesusdiedonthecrosstopaythepenaltyformysinsandfailures.IadmittoyouthatIamasinner,thatIneed
youtosaveme.Iaskyoutoforgivemeformysins.Iturnfromthemnow.IinviteJesusintomylifeasmySaviorandLord.Iturnmylifeovertohim.I
willliveforhimaslongasIlive.ThankyouforgivingmeeternallifeandmakingmethechildofGod.InJesus'name,

Amen.

Ifyoujustprayedthisprayerforthefirsttime,pleasetellsomeoneaboutyourdecision.Christianitycannotbelivedalone.Acoalbyitselfgoesoutitneedsthe
heatofothercoals.Shareyournewfaithwithsomeoneyoutrust,andwithachurchwhereyoucangrowinyourcommitmenttoChrist.Forhelpfulresources,such
asafree,downloadableBible,alocalchurchfinder,andanswerstofrequentlyaskedquestions,clickheretovisitNeedHimMinistries.

Howcanyouknowthatyou'reaChristian?

HowcanyoubesurethatyouareGod'schild,thatyouhaveapersonalrelationshipwithhim?Whatcanyoudowhendoubtsaboutyourfaitharise?

First,trusthisword.

Yoursalvationdoesnotdependonanythingyoucando,butonlyonwhatGodhasdoneforyou.IfyouhaveinvitedJesusChristtobeyourSaviorandLord,his
wordpromisesthathehasdonewhatyouaskedhimtodo.Hehasforgivenyourfailuresandsins,andmadeyouthechildofGod.Youhavehiswordonit:

"Whoeverbelievesinhimshallnotperishbuthaveeternallife"(John3:16).Fromthemomentyou"believedinhim,"youreceivedeternallife.

"Whoeverlivesandbelievesinmewillneverdie"(John11:26).Youhaveeternallife,rightnow.Youwillneverperish.Whenyoubreatheyourlastbreath
hereonearth,youbreatheyourfirstbreathinheaven.

"MysheeplistentomyvoiceIknowthem,andtheyfollowme.Igivethemeternallife,andtheyshallneverperishnoonecansnatchthemoutof
myhand"(John10:2728).Youarenotholdingontohimhe'sholdingontoyou.

"IfanyoneisinChrist,heisanewcreationtheoldhasgone,thenewhascome!"(2Corinthians5:17).Youareanewcreation,thechildofGod.Itisnot
possibleforyoutoreturntowhereyouwerebeforeyoumetChrist.

OnceyouhavechosentotrustinJesus,youhavebecomeanewcreation(2Corinthians5:17).Nowitisimpossibleforyoutochoosetoloseyoursalvation.A
childcannotchooselaternottobeborn.Youarehischild,andwillalwaysbehischild,justasmychildrenwillalwaysbemychildren.Nomatterhowtheyfeel,or
whattheysayordo,theycannotgobackandnotbemysons,becausetheywerebornasmysons.Youwere"bornagain"asthechildofGod,andwillbehischild
forever.

Second,trustGod,notfeelings.

Therewillprobablybetimeswhenyoudon'tfeelclosetoGod,whenyoudon'tfeellikegoingtoworship,orreadingtheBible,orpraying.ButtheBiblenowheretells
ushowitfeelstobeaChristian.OurfeelingsdependonmanyfactorsbesidesourrelationshipwithGod.Theyarethecabooseattheendofthetrainoffaith,notits
engine.

Ifyou'remarried,theremaybetimeswhenyoufeelclosertoyourspousethanothersbutyou'restillmarried.Anemployee'sfeelingsaboutheremployerdon't
changethefactthatshehasajob.Astudent'sfeelingsabouthisteachersdon'tchangethefactthathe'sinschool.Feelingsdon'tchangefacts.

Unfortunately,westillsinandfallshortofthepeopleourFatherwantsustobe.Fortunately,ourassuranceisnotbasedonourabilitiesbutGod'sgrace.Hesays
thatwearehischildren.HisSondiedtopayourspiritualdebtsowecouldjoinhiseternalfamily.ThisisthewordoftheLord.

Third,liveyourfaithanditwillbecomereal.

IttakesasmuchfaithtobelieveinGodnowasitdidwhenyoufirsttrustedinJesus.Faithisarelationship,andnorelationshipcanbeproven.Nomarriedcouple
canprovetosomeoneoutsidetheirfamilythattheyloveeachother.Nofriendscanprovetheirfriendshiptothosewhohavenotexperiencedit.It'simpossibleto
explainlovetosomeonewhohasneverfeltit.Relationshipsareselfvalidatingthemoretheyareexperienced,thestrongertheybecome.

Sodon'twaituntilyoufeelclosetoGodactasthoughyouare.Readhisword,pray,worshiphimpersonallyandpublicly,andgetinvolvedinthelifeandworkofa
localchurch.Actonyourfaith,andyou'llfindyourfaithgrowingdeeperandstronger.

YouweremadebyGodtoknowJesusandmakehimknown.ApersonalrelationshipwithJesusChrististheonlypiecethatwillfittheholeinyourspiritualjigsaw
puzzle.Heisthehubintowhichallthespokesofyourlifefit,the"truenorth"onyourcompass.Ifyouhaven'tenteredapersonalrelationshipwithJesusyet,I
sincerelyhopeyou'llpraytomeethimtoday.Ifyouknowhim,Ihopethatyou'llhelpsomeoneelseknowhim.HelpingpeoplefollowJesusisthegreatestjoyinlife.

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WHY THE VIRGIN BIRTH?

DID JESUS GO TO HELL?

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