Christianity-What Is It?

Cross of Christ

Christianity is based on God, His Son Jesus Christ, and the Bible, which is the Word of God. A Christian is one who believes the Bible and lives the teachings of Jesus Christ. This way of life brings peace and contentment here on this earth and prepares us for a home in heaven.

God the Father

The Bible teaches that there is only one God who has always been and always will be. God knows all things and His wisdom and knowledge are unlimited. The Bible says in Proverbs 15:3, “The eyes of the Lord are in every place, beholding the evil and the good.” He is present everywhere and can give full attention to everyone in the whole world at the same time. We can pray to God from any place and at any time. He hears our prayers and will answer as He sees best. There is only one God and yet He is revealed in three persons: God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. All three are distinct, and yet work together in harmony because they are one.

The Creation and the Fall of Mankind

God created the world and everything in it. In five days God created the sun, moon, stars, earth, water, birds, and fish. On the sixth day God created all the creatures of the land, and then created man in His own image. Man is the crown of God’s creation and an expression of His love. God created Adam, the first man, pure and without sin. God wanted man to serve Him by personal choice. He gave Adam and his wife Eve one simple commandment, but they chose to disobey. Because of their sin they were separated from God. Their disobedience caused everyone to fall under the curse of sin and death. God was the only one who could redeem mankind. Because of His love “He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).

God the Son

Jesus Christ is the Son of God. He came to earth as a baby, born of a virgin by the power of the Holy Spirit. Jesus lived the life of a common man. He was tempted of the Devil in many ways just as we are, yet never sinned. Jesus went about doing good, healing many people of their diseases. He taught them about salvation and the love of His Father. His purpose in coming to earth was to give Himself as a sacrifice for the sin of the whole world. As Jesus preached against sin and selfishness, the religious leaders became angry with Him. They delivered Him to the government authorities who crucified Him. After His death on the cross, His disciples placed His body in a tomb. On the third day, by the power of God, Jesus arose from the dead. Before He returned to heaven, He taught His followers how to establish the kingdom of God.

God the Holy Spirit

The Holy Spirit is the third person of the godhead. He reveals the will of God to man. He reproves people for their idolatry and sinful deeds. He invites man to accept the sacrifice of Jesus Christ as an atonement for their sin. To those who believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, God gives the gift of the Holy Spirit. He is a counselor in all of life’s difficulties, a comforter in all tribulations. He reproves men of unrighteousness, guiding them into all truth.

The Bible

The Bible is God’s Word and His message to man. It is not a man-made book but was written by holy men of old as they were inspired by the Holy Spirit. The Bible records the creation of the world and of man. It tells us that all have sinned and that sin separates man from God. It explains the way of redemption that is able to free everyone from the bondage of sin. The Bible teaches us how to live a godly life and how to prepare for eternity.

Living a Christian Life

To become a Christian we must realize our sinful condition. We must confess our sin and accept the Lord Jesus Christ as our Savior. As we surrender our life to God, He fills us with the Holy Spirit. The power of the Spirit abiding within enables us to love and forgive others. A Christian will strive to maintain purity in his heart and be honest and truthful. When we fail, the Bible promises that “If we confess our sins, He [God] is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9).

After Life

The Bible teaches us of the two eternal destinies of the soul, heaven or hell. When we die, the soul departs the body to await God’s final judgment. At the judgment the saved will be invited into heaven. All those who have rejected God will be sent to hell. Hell is a terrible place. It is a bottomless pit of burning fire prepared for the Devil and his angels. All those who did not obey the voice of Jesus, but willfully lived in sin will burn forever without hope.

Heaven is God’s dwelling place. It is the most beautiful place of perfect peace and rest prepared by God. In heaven there will be no more sorrow or pain, no hunger or sickness. It is the home for all who have forsaken sin and accepted Jesus as their Savior. There the saved will sing and praise God forever.

God’s Gift: The Christmas Story

Jesus in a manger

Before time began there was God. He created the world and everything in it. In his love, God created man in his own image and placed him in a beautiful garden. Man disobeyed God’s instructions. This disobedience was sin and separated man from God. He told them that they should sacrifice perfect young animals for their sins. These sacrifices did not pay for their sin but only pointed forward to the ultimate sacrifice that God would provide. Someday God would send his Son Jesus to this earth to be that ultimate sacrifice for the sins of all people.

Mary and the Angel

The angel speaks to Mary

Four thousand years later, in the town of Nazareth, there lived a young woman named Mary. She was engaged to be married to Joseph. One day an angel appeared to Mary and told her she would have a special baby. She should name Him Jesus. This baby would not have an earthly father. He would be God’s Son.

The Birth of Jesus

The star shining over Bethlehem

After the angel’s visit, Joseph and Mary made a long journey to Bethlehem to pay their taxes. When they reached Bethlehem, the city was crowded. They spent the night in the stable because there was no room in the inn. There Jesus was born. Mary wrapped baby Jesus in swaddling clothes and laid Him in a manger.

The Shepherds

Angels bring glad tidings to the shepherds

That same night, on a hill outside the city, shepherds were watching their sheep. An angel appeared and the glory of God shone around the shepherds. The angel said, “Don’t be afraid. I have good news that will bring great joy to all people. This night a Savior has been born. He is Jesus Christ the Lord. You will find the baby wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.” Then many angels appeared glorifying and praising God, saying “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will to men.” When the angels had gone away, the shepherds left their sheep and went quickly to Bethlehem. There they found the baby just as the angel had said they would.

The Wise Men

The wise men bring their gifts

After Jesus was born, wise men came from another country to Jerusalem. They asked, “Where is the baby who is born King of the Jews? We have seen his star in the east and want to worship Him.” When King Herod heard this, he was not happy. He called together the priests and teachers of the law. They told him the prophets had said a ruler would be born in Bethlehem. King Herod sent the wise men to Bethlehem to search for this king. As the wise men left Jerusalem, the star led them to the house where they found baby Jesus. They fell down and worshiped, giving Him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh. God warned the wise men in a dream that they should not return to wicked King Herod, so they went home a different way.

The Reason for God’s Gift

Jesus was God’s Son. He lived without sin and was perfect in all his ways. At thirty years of age, Jesus began to teach the people about God, his Father. He did many miracles such as giving sight to the blind, healing many people of their diseases, and even raising the dead. Above all, He taught the way to have eternal life in heaven. Then He gave his life as a sacrifice for the sin of the whole world.

The Bible says in John 3:16, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Jesus came to this earth to die on a cross as the supreme sacrifice. By his death, the price for all sin has been paid. There is no more need to offer sacrifices for sin. This was the fulfillment of God’s promise to send the Savior.

Jesus on the cross

Although Jesus was killed by wicked men, death had no power over Him. After three days He arose victorious from the grave. During the days following his resurrection, Jesus was seen by many people. Then one day, after blessing his followers, He ascended to heaven.

When we choose to believe and surrender our life to Jesus, his blood cleanses us from all our sin. As we accept this gift of salvation, we are reunited with God. Jesus becomes our personal Savior, and we can enjoy the blessings of being his child! Someday Jesus is coming back. He will take all the true believers to heaven. There they will live forever with God.

Hope

Hope

  • The man sat on the park bench with his head resting in his hands. There was a look of dejection about him. His sturdy work boots were worn through, and his jacket was frayed at the seams. He was alone on that cold winter day.
  • The young lady picked up her lunch tray and looked around. Who should she sit with today, or rather, who would sit with her? Fearing that nobody wanted her company, she went to a table in the corner. A sigh, an inward groan, another day was half over. She had lived with rejection and abuse… first from her family, now from her friends and schoolmates. Was there any escape?
  • Midnight passed, then one, two, three o’clock as the sleepless man tossed on the hotel bed. In a few hours he would be expected to entertain the crowd, draw out their emotions, and bask in their laughter and admiration. But why the restlessness? This was not the way it was supposed to be. He had attained fame and fortune but had no peace of mind.
  • She lay motionless, pain etching furrows across her brow. It had started years ago with a loss of feeling in her toes, then her fingers. Now her arms and legs were useless, and communication was down to a whisper. She lived under a heavy cloak of depression. What purpose was there in living? Oh, for someone to understand and care!

These and many other situations befall humans of every nationality and culture. Many people, young and old, face health issues that have no cure. Terminal illness claims the lives of many every year. The lack of food, water, clothing, and adequate housing are very real circumstances that trouble millions of people.

Many people have rejected God to pursue earthly relationships and tangible goals. This leaves the body and soul restless and empty. Often people blame God for their troubles. Broken dreams, failed marriages, financial ruin, abuse, rejection, drugs, and alcohol contribute to the depression and suicide in the world today.

In the beginning God created a perfect world. He enjoyed a close relationship with Adam and Eve, the first people of his creation. Satan, the enemy of God, soon came into the Garden of Eden and tempted them to disobey God. Because of disobedience, their fellowship with God was broken. Satan is the cause of sin and unrighteousness. Jesus said of him, “The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy” (John 10:10). You and I are the objects of Satan’s wrath, and he wants to destroy our body and soul in hell.

Jesus is the answer! He is our hope! He took our sins upon Himself, dying on the cross of Calvary so that our relationship with God could be restored. This renewed relationship with God will give us hope. Jesus said, “I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly. I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep” (John 10:10-11). Jesus invites all people, “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11: 28).

Jesus wants us to believe in Him. As we repent and confess our sin, God hears our prayers. He forgives us and adopts us into his family. God blesses his children with the abiding presence of the Holy Spirit. “For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind” (2 Timothy 1:7).

God’s forgiveness sets us free. Trusting God brings peace to our heart and mind. Life takes on a new meaning and purpose. Whatever our situation in life, we have hope! This hope will see us through the storms and tests of life. “Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ” (Titus 2:13).