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Christianity is a religion founded on the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ (1 Corinthians 15:1-4). Jesus, the divine, was incarnated to save mankind from the death penalty of their sins (John 3:16). God’s love for sinners led Him to give all that He had for their salvation (Romans 5:8). Christ’s mission revealed God’s infinite love for fallen humanity.
This is the greatest love story ever told – the Creator would save His created beings. Through Christ’s sacrifice, it becomes possible for humans to be “called the sons of God” (1 John 3:1). While God’s love in Christianity is offered to all people, only those who accept it by demonstrating obedience will be called children of God (John 1:12).
The Basic Beliefs of Christianity
- The Bible is God’s inspired Word which is profitable for correction, reproof, and instruction in righteousness (2 Timothy 3:16; 2 Peter 1:20-21).
- There is one God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, a unity of three coeternal Persons (Genesis 1:26; Deuteronomy 6:4; Isaiah 6:8; Matthew 28:19; John 3:16 2 Corinthians 1:21, 22; 13:14; Ephesians 4:4-6; 1 Peter 1:2.)
- Jesus is the eternal God (Isaiah 9:6) and not a created being (John 1:1-3). Even though He is fully God, He took on human nature that He may die to redeem mankind (Philippians 2:5-8). He rose from the dead (Mark 16:6). And now, He lives at the right hand of the Father, making intercession for believers forever (Hebrews 7:25).
- The wages for man’s sin were paid on the cross by Jesus’ death (Romans 6:23). By believing in His sacrifice and accepting Him as a personal Savior, people can receive the gift of eternal life (John 1:12). Thus, salvation is by grace through faith. It is the gift of God— not by works (Ephesians 2:8, 9).
- Because believers love Christ for His atoning death, they obey Him according to His commands (John 14:15). They are not saved by their works. But, because they are saved, they choose to obey God’s Ten Commandments (Exodus 20:2-17) as the standard for a godly life (1 John 5:3).
- Christ will come again and “will render to each one according to his deeds” (Romans 2:6).
Salvation – A Relationship with God
Christianity is not a mere mental acceptance of a set of beliefs but rather a daily intimate relationship with the true God through the Savior Jesus Christ. According to Christianity, a person can properly speak of salvation in three tenses – past, present, and future:
- The Christian can say, “I have been saved” when he accepts God’s forgiveness from all past sins by faith. This is an instant experience. This is called justification (Romans 3:28). Faith in Christ means being grateful for what He did for sinners and having trust in Him without reservation.
- The Christian can say, “I am being saved” as he is walking daily with the Lord. He is being delivered from the power of sin as he surrenders to God and walks in obedience to His word. This is a lifetime process. This is called sanctification (2 Thessalonians 2:13). Sanctification takes place when a person holds to Christ daily by study of the Word and prayer (1 Timothy 4:5). The Christian will allow the Lord to cleanse him and give him victory over sin by the power of the Holy Spirit (2 Corinthians 5:17). The only way he stops this process is to deliberately disconnect himself from the Lord.
- The Christian can say, “I shall be saved” from the presence of sin when Christ comes again. And this is called glorification (2 Thessalonians 1:10).
A Religion Like No Other
Christianity is a religion of love and peace. It spread to all the world by teaching not by the sword (Matthew 26:52). Christ, the “Prince of Peace” (Isaiah 9:6), came first to give man peace with God (Romans 5:1) and then taught his followers to follow peace with all people (Hebrews 12:14). He said: “Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you” (Luke 6:27, 28).
Christ did not set a kingdom here on earth, His mission was to draw attention to the kingdom above. To those who did not accept His divinity, “Jesus answered them, ‘I told you, and you do not believe. The works that I do in My Father’s name, they bear witness of Me’” (John 10:25).
Christ’s miracles of healing all the sick that came to Him (Matthew 4:23; Mark 6:56 Luke 6:19), casting demons out of men (Matthew 8:16; Mark 1:34; Luke 4:41), raising the dead (Mark 5:21-43; Luke 7:11-17; John 11:1-57), and many others, illustrated the divine compassion and mercy toward humanity. No other religious leader did the works that Jesus did.
His mission and mighty deeds presented the ultimate solution to the sin problem, where justice and mercy were fully satisfied, and offered the promise of eternal happiness. “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life” (John 3:16). There is no greater love than this (John 15:13).
In His service,