No other question is more important for us to answer.
At Cornerstone, we believe that one of the foremost teachings of the Bible is the righteousness of God. So let’s start there. For instance, Psalm 89:14 says of God: “Righteousness and justice are the foundation of your throne; steadfast love and faithfulness go before you.”
But you may ask, “so what? What does God’s righteousness have to do with me?” Well, that’s the bad news. The Bible also says that you are completely unrighteous. For example, Romans 3:10-11 says: “None is righteous, no, not one; no one understands; no one seeks for God.” That means that we have failed to live up to God’s perfect standard for our lives. In fact, the Bible tells us that we were born sinners, unable to know God on our own (Psalm 51:5; Ephesians 2:1-2).
But that’s not the end of the bad news. Because we fall short of God’s righteousness, the Bible says that we deserve eternal separation from God. Romans 3:23 says that “the wages of sin is death.” So that’s the bad news. We all are unrighteous and deserve to be separated from God forever.
But there is good news, too. That’s what the word “gospel” means, good news. The Bible makes it clear that Jesus Christ came and paid for our sin on the cross, and then He rose again. That’s the good news! Romans 5:8 says that “God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” And if that weren’t enough, God made Jesus “who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him” (2 Corinthians 5:21). That’s good news!
So Jesus Christ removed the barrier between us and God by dying on the cross and rising from the dead. God did all the work, but we have a responsibility as well.
Our responsibility in order to be reconciled with God is to place our faith in Jesus Christ for the free gift of eternal life! The Bible has a lot to say about this. For example, Ephesians 2:8-9 says, “for by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.” Or in another place, John 3:16, the Bible says, “for God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life.” It really is that simple! Because Jesus Christ did all the work, all we have to do is believe it! That is the meaning of the word “grace.”
When a person places their faith in Jesus Christ, the very righteousness and life of God are given to them. And because of our new relationship with God through faith in Jesus Christ, many other benefits are given to the believer as well. Romans 5:1 says that, “having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.” Therefore, we no longer have to live in fear of God. We are at peace with Him!
Hebrews 4:16 says that we can “draw near with confidence to the throne of grace.” Because of our relationship with Christ, we can boldly access God! We have full access to approach Him in prayer.
Another important result of our relationship is to have the assurance of our salvation. Because eternal life can never be lost, forfeited, sold, or taken away, we can have assurance that we will be with God when we die. John 5:24 says, “Most assuredly I say to you, he who hears my word and believes in Him who sent me has eternal life and will not come into judgment because he has passed from death to life.”
There is much more to learn about Christianity, being a follow of Jesus, and growing in your relationship with Him. Being a devoted Christian is much more than going to church, reading your Bible, and praying. Galatians 5:16 says, “walk by the Spirit and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh.”
As you now start to grow in your faith, find a church family that preaches the truth of God’s Word and teaches you to know more about the good news of Jesus for every area of your life. If you live in the Casper area, please consider joining us at Cornerstone! We would love to have you as our guest.