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What we believe is determined by what God has told us about himself and about mankind. This includes the purpose of our existence and how men and women can know a relationship with God.
God has shown us his character in three main ways – through the world (which he has created), through the Bible (which is his message) and also in his Son, Jesus Christ. God has told us that he is so pure that he cannot allow wrong-doing (the Bible uses the word "sin") to go unpunished. He is also loving, wanting all men to know a relationship with him, akin to the intimacy of a parent and child.
All of us have failed to live a life which honours God and as such we can only expect God's displeasure and judgment. Our best efforts to please God fall short and we cannot mend our broken relationship with him.
But God has taken the initiative to sort things out. His Son Jesus came into the world as a tiny human baby. Thirty three years later, having lived as God amongst us, he was put to death on a Roman cross. This was despite living the one perfect life ever and also demonstrating God's compassion by helping the weak and needy. Jesus death was all in God's master plan. As Jesus died he took the punishment for our sin. He was punished so that we need never be.
Three days after his death on the cross, he rose again from the dead in the power of an indestructible life. His rising again showed that his death had removed the barrier of sin between God and us, and promised that we too would one day rise again from the dead to be with God forever.
Now as we put our trust in Jesus, recognising him as Lord of our lives and acknowledging the necessity of his death, we receive forgiveness of our sins and a restored friendship with God. This is something possible for each one of us as it doesn't depend on us but on God's generous rescue plan put into effect through Jesus' death.
When we trust Jesus like this, we become Christians. His spirit comes to live inside us, giving us power to live a life like Jesus and to be witnesses to what Jesus has done. We are also not on our own, but join with other Christians in our church, where we meet to worship God, to learn more about Him and to spread his message in our locality and around the world.
If you have any questions arising from the information above, or are interested in finding out more about the Christian faith, please e-mail our minister, Paul Oliver, who will be happy to help you.