‘A Christian is someone who loves the Lord Jesus Christ.’

There are two very important verses in the Bible, which help us to understand what I have just said. The first is: ‘We love [Jesus Christ] because he first loved us.’ Now you might ask, ‘Well, how has he loved us?’ Let me share with you the second important verse: ‘This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.’

‘What does that mean?’ Let me put it like this: a newspaper editorial once asked the question, ‘What’s wrong with the world?’ Many people responded with their lengthy views. The best reply, however, came from G. K. Chesterton, and it was extremely short. He simply wrote, ‘I am.’ He turned the spotlight on himself and admitted that he was part of the overall problem. ‘I am’ the problem because of the bad things I do, think, desire and say, which destroy my relationship with God and others.

Until sin is dealt with our relationship with God cannot be repaired. Jesus Christ died on the cross ‘as an atoning sacrifice’ to deal with our sin. Everyone who turns from their sin to God receives forgiveness and eternal life, and as a result falls in love with Jesus. In other words, they become a Christian.

The story is told of a wealthy man who lost his wife when their only child was young. A housekeeper was hired to take care of the boy, who lived only into his teens. Heartbroken from this second loss, the father died a short time later. No will could be found; and since there were no relatives, it looked as if the state would get his fortune. The man’s personal belongings, including his mansion, were put up for sale. The old housekeeper had very little money, but there was one thing she wanted. It was a picture that had hung on a wall in the house – a picture of the boy she had loved and nurtured. When the items were sold, nobody else wanted the picture, so she bought it for just a few pennies. Taking it home, she began to clean it and polish the glass. As she took it apart, a paper fell out. It was the man’s will, and in it he stated that all his wealth should go to the one who loved his son enough to buy that picture.

There is great reward in loving the Son of God, Jesus Christ. Negatively, it means we escape the eternal punishment in hell that we all deserve, and positively it means we have an eternal love relationship with God that starts now and continues in heaven.

Perhaps you don’t really understand what I have written. Please come along to Howeth Road Evangelical Church, and we will share more of the good news of Jesus Christ with you.