Do we need Salvation?
Hundreds of times I have heard people say, "I am sure that salvation is good for some, but I have my own life, my own religion, and my own ideas; that's good enough for me."
Since many feel this way, what gives me the right to tell you that salvation is an absolute must for everyone?
To understand salvation, we must first understand God's original plan for people. God created us for the purpose of fellowship with Him.
There are three aspects to us: spirit, soul, and body. Our spirit is the deepest part of us. It is this part that has the potential to understand and relate to God. Faith in God always comes from our spirit.
The soul consists of our emotions, our will, and our mind, and of course, everyone knows what the body is. We are different from animals because we are spirit beings.
An animal has a soul, though not as developed as that of a human. Animals certainly have emotions, a will, and differing levels of intelligence. We as humans are unique.
You could say that we are spirit beings, capable of knowing God. We have souls, and we live in earthly bodies.
When Adam and Eve, the first human beings, sinned in the Garden of Eden, a void was created within their spirits. Their relationship with God died.
God's presence was no longer with them. They disobeyed God's Word. The Bible says: "Therefore, just as through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned." Romans 5:12
The tragedy was not just for Adam and Eve, but for all generations that would follow. The Bible further states, "For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.") There is none righteous, no, not one." Romans 3:10
Some have taken a casual approach to sin, thinking that, after all, we are all in the same boat-we are all sinners. Yes, mankind as a whole is in sin, but sin is a very personal thing. Sin is transgression of God's commandments. Think of those commandments:
"You shall have no other gods before Me."
"You shall not take the name of the Lord ... in vain."
Has there ever been anything in your life more important than God? Have you ever spoken about His name in a less than respectful way? Let's look at a couple of other commandments:
"You shall not commit adultery." Jesus said that if you even look in lust at a woman, you have committed adultery in your heart.
"You shall not murder," Jesus said that hatred is just like murder. When we hate someone, we "murder" that person with our thoughts.
Have you ever transgressed any of God's commandments? You could think of each one of them. "Honor your father and your mother." "Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy," "You shall not bear false witness .... "You shall not covet .... Exodus 20:3-17
There is a voice inside each one of us that says, "Guilty!" We realize how we as individuals are guilty before a holy God.
God had originally created a perfect world where people lived in a harmonious relationship with Him.
The devil came on the scene in the form of a serpent, and man willingly listened to him and followed his advice.
The Bible describes it like this: "Now the serpent was craftier than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said to the woman, 'Indeed, has God said, "You shall not eat from any tree of the garden Genesis 3:1
The devil deceived Adam and Eve by causing distrust in God's Word. Distrusting God is sin. The results of sin were terrible: more sin, pain, loneliness, fear, hatred, jealousy, murder, sickness, depression, and eternal separation from God.
Everything negative and destructive has its root in sin. When a baby is born, that baby has within itself the contamination of sin. "For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God." Ephesians 2:5-8
This is called "spiritual death." Man is left with a void on the inside. When a person is born again, we are not speaking of physical birth but of spiritual rebirth.
The part of man - his spirit - which has been separated from God through sin is reborn through the grace of God. We who were " ... dead in trespasses and sins ... are now ... made alive through Jesus Christ."
The condition of sin is universal; therefore salvation is not for a select group or for individuals with "special" religious needs. It is very much for everyone. We are all in the same boat. No one is righteous or able to live perfectly. The whole world stands guilty before God.
By now you may be quite depressed reading about the miserable human condition, but I assure you that our message is not bad news, but "good news."
The "good news" is that God has provided a gift that solves the human problem of sin and alienation from God. That gift is salvation.
God has already done His part