We are created for relationship.
• Created in His Image – God is Spirit – Part of being image bearers is that we are spiritual beings with a soul, created to live eternally with God.
• God the Father walked with Adam and Eve in the Garden. Things were just as God designed.
• Out of love, God gave us free will to choose.
• But when Adam and Eve chose to disobey God and sinned, relationship was broken and there were consequences: separation from God.
Isaiah 59:2 (NIV) But your iniquities have separated you from your God; Your sins have hidden His face from you, so that He will not hear.
Romans 3:23 (NIV) for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,
Why did Jesus come?
There is only one solution to our sin problem…Jesus. Jesus came to be our Savior and King.
Why did Jesus have to die?
Because In our sin, we broke the law. Sin requires judgement and a penalty to be paid.
• God wants what’s best for us, overlooking sin would not be loving because sin kills.
Romans 6:23 (NIV) “For the wages of sin is death.”
• Death is God’s penalty for sin. Someone has to pay for our sin!
• Without Jesus paying for our sins, we would be eternally separated from God in hell.
But….here is the good news: The Gospel!
Romans 5:6-8 (NIV) You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. 7 Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous person, though for a good person someone might possibly dare to die. 8 But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
Why did Jesus have to die? – Sin required a perfect (innocent) sacrifice for payment.
Out of love, Jesus became the perfect sacrifice to take our sins away! He is our substitute! He is the perfect and holy lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world.
2 Corinthians 5:21 (NIV) God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
Romans 3:22 (NIV) This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe.
Why the cross?
1. To demonstrate God’s love.
The cross is a radical demonstration of God’s love for us but also the model of radical love we are to have for others.
John 3:16 (NIV) For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
This offer stands for all who repent of their sins and believe that Jesus is Lord and Savior.
- The cross is a painful picture to remind us that our sin cost God His son.
God Himself provided the only perfect sacrifice (Jesus) who could pay for the sins of His people. God’s perfect Son fulfilled God’s perfect requirement of God’s perfect law.
John 19:30(NIV) When he had received the drink, Jesus said, “It is finished.” With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.
On the cross, Jesus completed all that the Father asked Him to do. It means payment for sin is fully satisfied.
Why the resurrection?
This story would be powerless and incomplete without the resurrection.
- Jesus proved He is God by fulfilling His own prophesy of His death, burial and resurrection.
Matthew 16:21 (NIV) From that time on Jesus began to explain to his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things at the hands of the elders, the chief priests and the teachers of the law, and that he must be killed and on the third day be raised to life.
- The Resurrection proved God’s power to forgive sin through the sacrifice of Jesus.
1 Corinthians 15:17 (NIV) And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins.
- The Resurrection won the war over Satan’s grip of sin and death – we still face a battle.
Colossians 2:15 (NIV) And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross.
John 16:33 (NIV) “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
- The empty tomb offers us a resurrected life.
- The empty tomb changed everything for the Disciples of Christ: their perspective, their mission, their lives. What about yours?
John 11:25-26 (NIV) Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die; 26 and whoever lives by believing in me will never die. Do you believe this?”
What will you do with Jesus?
Life Group Questions:
1. Read Luke 24:1-12 and Acts 2:14, 22-39. What do you see in these passages about Jesus, God’s activity and resurrection?
2. What impact did Jesus’ resurrection have on different people in these passages?
3. What have you experienced because of Jesus’ resurrection?
4. Look at Ephesians 2:1-5 & Hebrews 9:11-15. What did Jesus’ death and resurrection do for those who believe and trust him?