Salvation in Christ

Statue of Jesus the good shepherd with lost sheep on his back

Jesus the Good Shepherd

Many of us, when we consider our lives, the problems we have, and the pain we suffer, wonder: “Where is God?” and “Does God care for me?” We may just be disoriented from the chaos of life, or have anxiety and fear building up from all of the uncertainties we face. Some of us may have intentionally taken wrong and destructive paths, and are suffering from it. Whatever our condition, we are all in need of a shepherd—one who cares for us, leads us, and protects us from danger. And not just any shepherd, but Jesus the good shepherd.

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Thomas now has faith in Jesus after he puts his hand in Jesus' side where he was wounded

What is faith as defined in the Bible

Faith is widely used word, and most people use it without even thinking. But it’s a very important word, so how should we define it? More importantly, what does it mean as it is used in the Bible? And why is this important to our relationship with God? Surprisingly, the biblical meaning is no different than how we most use it in everyday life.

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Barabbas is freed from his chains, and Jesus substitutes his life for Barabbas

Set Free by Christ our Substitute

The gospel is the good news to the condemned and sinful. Those who believe it are acquitted of their guilt before God and set free! But how can God set free those who are clearly guilty of sin? There must be a fair and just basis for the acquittal. We learn the answer from the gospel story itself—that Jesus Christ was our substitute.

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Self-righteous Pharisee was not justified by God, but the sinful tax collector was

Justified: Getting Right With God

Jesus once told a parable about two men who were at the temple praying. At the end of his story, one man went away justified, while the other did not. What does it mean to be justified by God? Some think it’s a complex theological word that average believers should quickly pass over. Though the meaning is profound, it’s actually quite understandable.

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Woman praying and sincerely seeking God

Seeking and Finding the God Who is Near

Some people claim that since we can’t see God, finding him is impossible, so we shouldn’t waste our time seeking him. For them, God is just an interesting discussion topic. But many throughout history have claimed to have sought God and found him. All throughout Scripture God tells us to seek him. Why would God invite us to seek him if it’s impossible to find him?

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Rough looking elderly man praying to God for forgiveness.

What is the Unforgivable Sin?

What kind of sins can God forgive? Is there any sin that God cannot forgive? What is the “unforgivable sin” we read about in the Bible? Is this the same as the sin against the Holy Spirit, or the eternal sin that Jesus warned us about?  Many people wonder about these questions, and they all have fairly simple answers.

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Jesus Christ sacrificed on the cross.

Christ’s Sacrifice: Once For All

As Jesus was dying, he uttered his final words from the cross: “It is finished.” The sacrifice that provided for the salvation of the world was complete. Christ gave himself—his own life—as payment for our sins. But did Christ’s sacrifice apply only to those after his death? Did Jesus come just for us today? What about those who lived before his death and resurrection?  Could those people also find salvation? If so, on what basis? 

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Young child holding on to her mother shows the love and trust a believer has toward God.

Becoming Like Children: Trusting and Loving God 

Jesus taught that to enter God’s kingdom, we must become like children. Clearly, he was not teaching that we should be like little children in every way, but only in certain ways. What are the attributes of children that Jesus was referring to? 

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Man in a forest setting repenting before God, with a bright light shining in the back.

Repentance and Reconciling with God

What does it mean to repent? Does it mean we suddenly become religious or decide to join a church? No. Or does it mean you vow to never sin again? Hardly. But then what is it? Is it a once and for all act? And is it essential for a relationship with God? Because repentance is such an important word in the Christian faith, we need to know the answers to these questions.

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The image of Christ on the cross on a concrete grave marker portrays God's forgiveness and atonement for sins

Forgiveness and Atonement

All people everywhere need forgiveness. We have all sinned against others and against God, and fallen short of his expectations of us. Is there hope for us, and can God forgive us? No one has lived a life free of sin. Even those we consider “good” fall far below God’s standards. The Bible talks about both forgiveness and atonement. What is atonement and what does it mean to us?

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