But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:8
God loves us.
That's an amazing truth, isn't it? The eternal God has deep affection and affinity for us. He wants us to be His children. He longs to know us and have a relationship with us. He desires to bless us and show us His great love. But there is a problem.
Man is a sinner.
We are not sinners because we sin; we sin because we are sinners. We are sinners by nature and our sin separates us from God. There is a great chasm between us and God that cannot be bridged by our own efforts (good works). All of us have sinned and fall short of God's holy standard. Trying to get to God on our own would be like trying to jump across the Grand Canyon. You might jump farther than me, or I might jump farther than you, but the rescue workers will not be measuring the distance when they pick up our bodies off the rocks. Since we can't get to God, God came to us.
Christ died for us.
God loved us so much that He did something about our predicament. He sent His Son to do for us what we could not do for ourselves. Jesus came to pay the penalty for our sin by dying on the cross. Jesus was fully God and fully man. Being God, He was sinless, so He didn't have to die for His sins. He went to the cross as a sinless sacrifice. Being man, He died in our place. He died as our substitute.
Being a Christian is simply this: I come to the point where I realize that I am a sinner and cannot have a relationship with God on my own. I know that God loves me so much that He sent His Son to die for me. And I trust in Jesus as the One who died on my behalf. I trust in Jesus as the only way to have a relationship with God, experience new life now, and live with Him forever. Would you like to have a relationship with the heavenly Father who loves you with that kind of love? Use the following prayer as your guide to trust in Jesus.
Dear heavenly Father, I admit that I am a sinner and cannot earn my way to You. I thank You for loving me so much that You sent Jesus to die on the cross for my sin. I thank You for raising Him back to life. Today, I trust in Jesus alone as the One who paid the penalty for my sin on the cross. I trust in Jesus as the only way to have a relationship with You. In Jesus' name. Amen.