So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them. (Genesis 1:27 ESV)
God created you in his image, unique from everything else in creation, so you could have a relationship with him. He made you for delight, for life, and for a purpose.
Instead of loving, serving, and worshiping God, you want to be God. You ignore him, disobey him, and love, serve, and worship other things instead. We all do this by nature. We’re sinners. The Bible says the wages for sin is death (Romans 6:23). The result of your sin is that you’re spiritually dead, which means you are unable to experience the life of purpose and joy for which God designed you. For all who choose to reject him, God will not welcome them into his joyous presence in eternity, but will require that they bear his just punishment for their own sins for eternity in hell.
Since we could do nothing to restore our relationship with God, God came to us. God sent his perfect Son, Jesus, who is fully God, into the world to save us from sin, because no sinful human can make another human right with God.
“I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.” (John 10:10 ESV)
Because God is good, he is just. Sin had to be dealt with, so God sent his Son to pay the cost himself, and Jesus joyfully took the punishment for your sins upon himself, out of love.
“But God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:8 ESV)
By conquering death through his resurrection, Jesus made the way for us to have new life. Through him, we can be “born again” into God’s family, now able to know God not just as our Creator but as our Heavenly Father.
“He [God] has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.” (1 Peter 1:3 ESV)
God made Jesus Lord and King over all. Jesus is now in heaven, alive. Being the Savior, Jesus is also the Lord, to whom every knee must bow.
“So then the Lord Jesus, after he had spoken to them, was taken up into heaven and sat down at the right hand of God.” (Mark 16:19 ESV)
Jesus will return to judge the world. Those who accept his free sacrifice will join him in eternal joy. Those who reject his free sacrifice will pay the penalty for their own sin for all eternity.
“So Christ, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time, not to deal with sin but to save those who are eagerly waiting for him.” (Hebrews 9:28 ESV)
What do you have to do? That’s just it; God has done all that needed to take place for you to enter into a relationship with him and receive his free gift of new life. You just have to take him at his Word, and believe him—that you’re a sinner, that Jesus is the only Savior, and that he is worthy of your trust from this day forward.
Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own. (1 Corinthians 6:19 NIV)
God gives a special gift to all who believe in Jesus—himself. He actually comes to live inside of us forever. Without the gift of the Holy Spirit, we would have no power to live out our new life. But by the Holy Spirit, we are free from the power of sin to live in a way that pleases God.
Once you have put your faith in Jesus, and received his Holy Spirit, you have eternal life. Eternal life isn’t just life with God after you die. It’s a quality of life that starts right now. Eternal life is the life we were always meant to have—life in a right relationship with God where we increasingly know, love, trust, and enjoy him. Life becomes about knowing and treasuring and sharing Jesus. The Christian life is a life of faith, of trusting God and believing all he says in his Word, the Bible. That’s why Christians are often called “believers.” We live out our genuine belief as we obey Jesus’ word with the help of the Holy Spirit.
You make known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand. (Psalm 16:11 NIV)
Life looks different with Jesus. You’re a new person with a new purpose. You are God’s child, and an heir of his kingdom. He has a special place for you in his kingdom, and specific plans for your life (Ephesians 2:10). As you seek him and get to know him through reading his Word, the Bible, and talking to him in prayer, he will make himself more and more known to you. As you walk with him day by day, his Spirit will lead you into the plans he has for you. As you discover and delight in God, he will change you to be more like himself and will accomplish his purposes through you.
Open your Bible to Ephesians 1-3. Take a pen and highlighter, get a piece of paper, or open a note on your phone. Write down every phrase in this passage that describes who you are as a child of God.