Let not the wise man boast of his wisdom
or the strong man boast of his strength
or the rich man boast of his riches,
but let him who boasts boast about this:
that he understands and knows me…
– Jeremiah 9:23-4
Believing that God exists is not hard. Really. It requires much greater faith to believe that God is not — that the universe is random and that life is meaningless. The beauty of a sunset, the vastness of space, the intricacies of a cell, the longing of our own hearts all rail against such willful blindness.
Believing that God exists is the easy part. The hard thing, the unbelievable, far-fetched, incredible thing to believe is that the one true God of the universe would care to know and be known by us. And yet He does.
We’re not talking about knowing facts about God. We’re talking about knowing God through experience. We’re talking about a relationship. If you’re just looking for a religion, there are plenty to choose from and one’s probably as good as another. (Or follow the current fad and make up your own.) They’ll all give you a list of what to believe and not believe, what to do and not do. Living in relationship with the God of the universe is another matter entirely.
How do you describe such a mystical reality with words? The Bible gives us many images of what entering into a relationship with God is like…
- a person in darkness who walks into the light. (Acts 26:18, I Peter 2:9)
- an orphan who’s adopted. (Romans 8:15)
- a dead person who is made alive. (I Cor. 15:22, Eph. 2:5, Col. 2:13)
- someone who gets a “do-over” by being born again. (John 3:3-8, I Peter 1:23)
- a debtor who has his debts cancelled. (Luke 7:42)
- a blind person who receives sight. (Luke 4:18)
- a prisoner who is set free. (John 8:36)
- a person in great peril who is saved. (John 10:9, Acts 4:12)
- an offender who is reconciled with the one he has hurt. (II Cor. 5:17-21)
· We’re not talking about reforming or turning over a new leaf or trying harder. We’re talking about receiving a new life. So how does that happen? Jesus said, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” – John 14:6 The preposterous good news is that God became one of us in the person of Jesus Christ in order to die for our sins and reconcile us to himself. It seems almost like blasphemy to try to reduce such mind-bogging truth to a set of propositions. Yet, just as the greatest masterpieces were written by those who began by learning the alphabet, so this great truth is simple enough for a child to receive.
A – Admit
We must admit that we’re not God; we’re not all-knowing or all-powerful, all-loving or all good. We must admit that we’ve wanted to do things our way and not God’s way. We must admit that we’ve failed to be all God intended for us to be. We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us had turned to his own way; and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all. – Isaiah 53:6
B – Believe
We must believe that Jesus came and lived and died on the cross and rose again so that we could be forgiven of our sins and have a new, eternal life. And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves, but for him who died for them and was raised again. – II Corinthians 5:15
C – Commit
We must commit our lives to this God who loves us so extravagantly. Playing the field is not allowed. We must be willing to let go of our old life and receive a new one. We must let the God of the universe be the God of us. …if you confess with your mouth “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in you heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. – Romans 10:9
You can do that right now: Simply call out to God. He will hear and receive you if you give your life to him. And then the real adventure begins. Just as a newborn learns and grows and develops, so you will begin to be transformed. Just as a newborn needs a family to grow up in, so you need the family of God. It is an American heresy that the Christian life can be lived alone. Let us hear from you so we can help you connect with your spiritual family.
Let us hear from you anyway. We’re not afraid of questions or arguments. You don’t have to be afraid that we’ll just try to talk you into something. (That would be pretty futile. If we just talk you into something today, somebody else can talk you out of it tomorrow.) Jesus said, “Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door I will come in and eat with him and he with me.” – Rev. 3:19
The One who spoke worlds into existence wants a relationship with you! What is your response?