(The following article is one that I wrote for the Church Page of the Concordia Blade-Empire. It is scheduled to run on Friday, March 11, 2011.)
Every week, I find myself fielding questions of doubt - not raised by the world, but from other “religious” belief systems. Students and adults alike inquire if there is any other possible way to a right relationship with God than through Jesus Christ.
The beauty of following Jesus Christ comes from the simplicity of the Gospel message. Most people know (or have at least heard) the ever familiar John 3:16 which tells of God’s incredible love for us. Two chapters earlier, another incredible verse jumps off the page:
"But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name," – John 1:12 (NASB)
By believing on the name of Jesus Christ, a person receives the full benefits offered up to a child of the God Almighty. By believing, we are changed from one who is lost, to one who is found. This belief leads to a life of repentance, a life that has been forgiven and a life that has purposeful hope. All of this and even more is available to us, because of Jesus Christ.
For many, doubt about these truths set in when they encounter other belief systems that whisper falsehoods wrapped in a shade of truth. Some say you need to be a part of “God’s organization here on earth”. Others teach that Jesus and Lucifer were siblings and that the Gospel was lost for centuries. Other religions deny that Jesus Christ died on the cross. There are even belief systems teaching that we pay for our sins over and over like a cruel version of Bill Murray’s “Groundhog Day” until we reach enlightenment. And, of course, there are those who say it is all just a fairy tale.
As we enter the 40 days counting down to the celebration of the very physical death and very physical resurrection of Jesus Christ, let us remember that He became the payment for your sin and my sin so that we can have the opportunity to be a child of God. If you are reading this and you realize that you are not a child of God, please call 1-888-NEED-HIM. You can also call me - my number is in the phone book. If you are a child of the God, reach out to those around you and tell them about Jesus.