“He himself bore our sins in his body on the cross, so that, free from sins, we might live for righteousness; by his wounds you have been healed. For you were going astray like sheep, but now you have returned to the shepherd and guardian of your souls.” 1 Peter 2: 24-25
WHY DID JESUS DIE?
Our Lord Jesus is a holy God who shed his own blood on Calvary for our sins. Jesus died for all people, no matter what race or religion they are. Take a minute and think about it; if Jesus hadn’t died for us, we would have died in our sins and if he hadn’t been raised from the dead then we couldn’t look forward to eternal life with God. However, Jesus died and rose again so that we sinners could have eternal life; he did this out of love, pure unconditional love. Jesus loves each one of us. He never wanted us to die in our sins with no hope of heaven; instead he gave himself as a sacrifice, so that all our sins could be washed away in the sinless blood that he shed on the cross. Jesus wants to share with each one of us the new life that he won for us and he wants everyone to be with him in heaven; that’s why he went through the brutal death on the cross.
THE WAY, THE TRUTH AND THE LIFE
Many of us are blind and take spirituality very lightly. Sadly, this is the kind of world we live in, where God’s love and mercy are not taken seriously. When I first became a Christian I remember people saying to me, “I have been a Christian for a long time and I haven’t seen Jesus, and you say you have? What are you talking about?” and “What is your room number? I will tell everyone that Jesus lives there.” But knowing Jesus is a huge blessing, especially for a person like me who came from a different faith. I was ignorant of the truth, but because of God’s great mercy and love, I came to know Jesus Christ, as my saviour. Jesus said, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (John 14:6) I am glad to say that by faith I am a Christian.
SEEK HIM WITH ALL YOUR HEART
If we truly want to dwell more and more in God’s love and experience the power of his Holy Spirit in our lives, it is very simple. Jeremiah 29:13 says “You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” That’s the promise our Lord has given us. “You know with all your heart and soul that not one of all the good promises the Lord your God gave you has failed. Every promise has been fulfilled; not one has failed.” (Joshua 23:14) God keeps his word and fulfils it in his own time, all we need to do is trust his word, and reach out to him.
THIRSTING FOR LOVE
1 John 4:8 says “God is love”, and his great love is expressed in John 3:16 “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” How can we turn our back on this amazing love? But it’s a two way process, so while we thirst and hunger for God’s love, God himself also thirsts and hungers for his people to love him. Our response should be to passionately love God. His love is all that we need. Worldly pleasures cannot satisfy us as they are temporary, but in God’s love we are permanently satisfied and we should pray, asking to experience his love, as Jesus is eagerly waiting to pour his love out upon us!
RECEIVE HIS STRENGTH
It is not always easy to serve God, there are times when our faith will be tested (Sirach 2: 1-4) but what God really wants to see is our love, devotion and faithfulness to him. When faced by challenges we can say “I can do all this through him who gives me strength.” (Philippians 4:13) When we are tempted, we can read John 3:16 and reassure yourself with Romans 8:31 “If God is for us, who can be against us?” If you are ridiculed for being a Christian remember “If you are reviled for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the spirit of glory, which is the Spirit of God, is resting on you.” (1 Peter 4:14) We can’t possibly have anything more promising and reassuring than the unconditional love of God.
Written by : Anne Mary