What must I do to be saved from my sins? (Salvation)
The Creator of the universe is the God who made everything, seen and unseen. He is an infinitely good God. God is holy and just and also a God of love. His desire is that people from across the world, from all ethnic groups, be with Him for eternity. He made you to be unique: you are one of a kind. And He has provided a way for people like us to be reconciled to Him and to be in a loving relationship with Him.
But something happened that made this relationship God intended for us, impossible by human means: our sin. We have broken God’s holy Law. We have lied, stolen, made and worshipped idols; coveted other people and their possessions; used God’s Name in vain; dishonored our parents and older people; murdered, (God calls hatred murder: see Matthew 5:27-30); committed adultery (God sees lust as adultery; read Matthew 5:32); and so on.
We have all rebelled against God, and therefore fall short of God’s glory (Read Romans 3:23). Our personal sins have made separation between God and us, and by our own good deeds and words we cannot make this wall of separation disappear or be broken down. We are therefore guilty before God because we broke God’s holy law and because of our sins and rebellion. We all are like sheep who have gone astray, everyone to his/her own way (Read Isaiah 53:6). And because of our sins we deserve to die and be eternally separated from God. The wages of sin is death, eternal death (See Romans 6:23). The soul that sins must die (See Ezekiel 18:20). God is holy and cannot have union with sinners without His justice being satisfied. God’s judgment on sin demands an infinite penalty: eternal death.
Our sins need to be punished by death. That is God’s decree: see, e.g., Genesis 9:5-6. He wouldn’t be just if He didn’t punish sin. We cannot pay for our own sins, because we all are sinners, but God sent his Son Jesus Christ to this earth to live a sinless (perfect) life (Hebrews 4:14-16) and to die in the place of sinners and make atonement (payment) for them. He did this when He was crucified on a cross about 2,000 years ago in Israel, outside Jerusalem, to pay for sin, for sinners, so that we can be forgiven our sins (1 Peter 2:22-23). Jesus bore the infinite wrath of God, satisfied his justice, when He died on that cross, so that sinners can be united with God again (1 John 1:1,2). After three days Jesus rose from the dead and so overcame the power of death, Satan and sin (John 20:1-10; Matthew 28:1-10; 1 Corinthians 15:1-22).
Union with God can become an eternal reality for us if we turn from our sins and receive Jesus Christ as our Savior and King (John 1:12). We need to receive Jesus Christ for who He is, as the Bible reveals him, and not who we might think He is. A false Christ cannot save us. We need to come to God as we are and leave our bad and good deeds behind. Jesus isn’t impressed with our good deeds (our so-called righteousness). We need his perfection (his righteousness) to be accounted to us, so that we might stand holy and blameless before God. Jesus broke down the wall of separation between God and believing sinners. He removed the guilt believers deserved. If we turn from our sins and receive Christ as our Savior and the Ruler of our lives, God the Holy Spirit will baptize us, cleanse us, fill us, and make his home within us forever (John 14:15-23). In order to receive Christ as He is, we need to let go of our own pride and sins. We will then have a restored relationship with God. Even if we die physically, we will be with God if we are united with Jesus Christ (1 Corinthians 15:50-58).
But He was wounded for our transgressions,
He was bruised for our iniquities,
The chastisement for our peace was upon Him,
And by His wounds we are healed