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What is Christianity?

The Bible teaches that God made and manages the world and everything in it (including us). Because he made the world, he has a right to rule the world.

You are worthy, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power,

for you created all things, and by your will they were created and have their being. Revelation 4:11

Our chief problem is that we don't want God to rule over us. Rather we want to rule ourselves. We substitute ourselves for God, putting ourselves where only God deserves to be--in charge of our lives. The Bible calls this sin. Sin always leads (in the end) to misery, death and judgment. God is just and must deal with our sin.

Man is destined to die once, and after that to face judgment. Hebrews 9:27

But God is also loving and merciful and has made a way to rescue us from sin and its consequences. The Bible calls this salvation. Salvation is God substituting himself for us, putting himself where we deserve to be--dying on the cross.

God made [Jesus] who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. 2 Corinthians 5:21

To become a Christian is first to admit the problem: that you have been substituting yourself for God either by religion (trying to be your own savior by obedience to moral standards) or by irreligion (trying to be your own lord by disobedience to moral standards). And second to accept the solution: asking God to forgive you for sinning in this way and to accept you for Jesus' sake and know that you are loved and accepted because of his record, not yours. In other words, to become a Christian means to turn from sin and efforts of self-salvation, and trust in Jesus who died and rose again to secure our salvation.

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