Christian / from me to you / The Mapps Quest

truth is not subjective

Before you can understand what believing in Christ means, you have to understand what sin is.  You’ve probably heard this word, although most people think of the word sin as a playground where we want to hang out (Lady GaGa writes songs about it).  The meaning of the word is becoming subjective in our society, and across the world.  Meaning: what may be wrong to you, may not be wrong to me.

‘Sin’ as defined by Dictionary.com:

  • transgression of divine law: the sin of Adam.
  • any act regarded as such a transgression, especially a willful or deliberate violation of some religious or moral principle.
  • any reprehensible or regrettable action, behavior, lapse, etc.; great fault or offense: It’s a sin to waste time.

I find it interesting that a word that should divide good from evil is defined in a way that says we can regard whether it is right or wrong depending on the situation.  If a man steals your car is that ok because he really needed it?  Also, since when is sin only a sin if it goes against a religion?  There was a religion back in the B.C. days where people would offer their newborns as sacrifices.  So by that definition it would be a sin to NOT sacrifice your first born.

God has made it very easy for us to figure out if we have sinned.  Do you ever feel like you have done something wrong?  Have you ever hurt someone by what you said or did?  Have you ever gone to jail because of it???  You have sinned.  Most of all though, we have not just sinned against others, but against God.

In the very beginnings of the Bible we watch Adam & Eve defy God’s command to not eat from the tree of Good & Evil.  The serpent (the devil) plants a thought inside of Eve that the fruit is not only good for knowledge  but that it is good for food as well.  She gets so wrapped up in just thinking about the fruit that it becomes what she lusts after.  She takes it, and gives it to Adam, who willfully eats it…even thought he has been standing near her as she is persuaded by the serpent.   At any time he could have pulled her away, and literally saved her from the devils enticements, but he chose to listen as well.  We are by nature people that ignore what God commands, because we feel like the sin could lead to something so much better.  But it leads to death.

Because of that first sin God makes a promise: Genesis 3:19 “By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food until you return to the ground, since from it you were taken; for dust you are and to dust you will return.”  We willdie.  Please don’t read those words and roll your eyes.  The statistics for death are staggering.. 1 out of every 1 persons WILL DIE.  So what can be done?

At this point we are separated from God.  We work for sin (basically controlled by it), and we get paid what we are owed… “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus” Romans 6:23

There is no plan B.  There never was.  God created this planet, this world for us, so we could make a decision.. either for or against Him. I like to think of it this way: would you rather force someone to love you, or do you want them to come to you because they want to love you?  There is no sin where God is.  He is perfect, and being that He is perfect, He literally cannot sin.  Nor will He allow a person who willfully sins and does not say they are sorry to be with Him.  *Remember that when you sin, you are sinning against God.*  Why would He let you into His house if you don’t want anything to do with Him?

Because we are sinners, when we die, we must go to a place where we are separated from God (aka: Hell).  Why is Hell so bad?  If you are a living, breathing soul you are benefiting from God at this very moment.  Every good thing that happens to you is because God is making it happen.  Laughter, happiness, intelligence, sunshine, love, the ability to enjoy what God has made, is all part of His grace to ALL.  When you go to Hell you can kiss all of that goodbye.

So now what?  I can’t go to Heaven cause I’m a sinner (aka I have done at least 1 bad thing).  Where is my hope?  ”God demonstrates His own love for us in this: while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8.  Again you may be tempted to roll your eyes.. but hear me out.  When a person dies, essentially their blood is ‘poured out’.. they no longer need that life sustaining substance, right?  So in the B.C. days God had the people sacrifice animals to ‘cover’ their sins, so they could be in His presence.  Basically they traded the blood of an animal (the firstborn bull, goat, etc. that had no defects) for their own blood that would be spilled when they died.  The animal had to be perfect because you can’t make a sacrifice with a bull that has something wrong with it.. God is perfect remember?  And so to be in His presence, you’re sacrifice has to be perfect, too.  Well guess what.. it is nearly impossible to keep this kind of thing up… I mean, who sacrifices anymore?? You have to sacrifice every single time you sinned.  They couldn’t even keep it up back then when it was legal.

Enter Jesus.  100% God, 100% man.  While on Earth He had the power to refrain from sin (because He is God), but felt the hurt of being a human.  He walked this planet and was loved, hated, despised, used, and abused.  And yet, He never sinned.. not once.  He was nailed to a cross because the local Jews at the time were enraged that He would confess to be God, and the Roman government at the time wanted to make them happy and not have a riot.  It was the plan all along.  One minute the people are loving Him, the next they are screaming for His blood.  Kind of ironic right??

So, the sacrifice for sins (once sustained by an animals blood that only ‘covered’ your sin.. not demolished it) is replaced and perfected in Jesus and He becomes the ultimate, perfect sacrifice to die in place of anyone who will accept what He has done.  He dies.  He defeats death by looking straight into the eyes of Satan and saying ‘you can’t have me because I have not sinned’… so instead of going to Hell, He arises from being dead.  He appears to the people on earth who had loved Him, and tells them to tell the world.  Then He rises to Heaven to be with God.  And now because Christ has made the ultimate sacrifice and beaten Satan, He offers us a gift.

We can be for Him, or against Him.  There is no middle ground.  To say that you will make a decision later is a decision against Christ.  You are not promised to live to see tomorrow.  The only promise you have as a person who does not know Christ is death.   There is a great big gaping hole in your heart where Christ belongs, and God has put it there.  Before I knew Him I felt that ache inside that something was missing.  I would fill it with things that only made it worse.  There is truth out there if you are open to receiving it.

How can I know God?  How can I be saved from everlasting separation from God?  ”If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord”, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.  For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.” Romans 10:9-10

***

As an aside: I am a sinner, as is every human that walks the earth.  Although I have a relationship with Christ, and have been forgiven for my past and future sins, I still make mistakes, but when I know it is happening I am now able (through Christ), to reject those thoughts and actions and prevent them from becoming out of control.  And though I am forgiven, I am reminded daily that I should not take that for granted, and that I am in a constant state of asking for God’s help.  This is where He wants me.. to be in constant communication, better or worse… till death do us join.

I am not perfect and that being said, my writing is not perfect.  I do not claim to have all the answers, however if you have questions I will certainly find the answers or help direct you on where to find them.

Whether you believe in God or not, you know the emptiness I have talked about.  Don’t let it define you, let Christ change you from the inside out, into the person that He made you to be.

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