Bridge to Life

God’s Plan – Peace and Life

God created us, not as robots, but as personal beings made in His own image (Genesis 1:27). He created us with the ability to relate to Him on an intelligent level. He gave us freedom of choice so that we could choose whether or not to love and obey Him. Just as we humans experience our deepest love from other humans, who have the freedom to accept or reject us, so also our Creator wanted a being who could love Him more than the rest of His creation.

When God had finished creating the world, He declared that everything in it – including human beings – was “very good” (Genesis 1:31).

Our Problem – Separation from God

Right away, God gave the humans He had created an opportunity to choose whether or not to obey Him. He placed Adam and Eve in a beautiful garden with just one regulation: They could eat of the fruit of every tree but one: to eat of that tree would mean spiritual death and separation from God (Genesis 2:16 – 17).

Unfortunately, Adam and Eve chose to disobey God (Genesis 3:6), and were therefore separated from Him (Genesis 3:22 – 24). This separation exists today for all who are without Christ as Lord and Saviour:

“Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all men, because all sinned …”

Romans 5:12

Even though Adam and Eve committed the “original” (first) sin, simple observation shows us that every human who has ever lived has been a sinner as well – as this verse states.

As a result of this universal sin, a chasm or gap has become fixed between God and humans, as shown in the diagram below. (The biblical story of the rich man and Lazarus speaks of this “great chasm” – see Luke 16:19 – 26). Through the ages, people have tried to bridge this gap in many different ways, but without success. As the illustration shows, they have tried various religions, good works, morality, and various philosophies of life, to bridge the gap:

As we will see in step 3, there is only one remedy for this separation.

God’s Remedy – The Cross

Jesus Christ is the only answer to this problem of separation between human beings and God. When Jesus died on the cross and rose again from the grave, He paid the penalty for our sin and bridged the gap between us and God. His death and resurrection make a new life possible for all who believe in Him. The Bible says:

“For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave Himself as a ransom for all.”

1 Timothy 2:5 – 6

When Jesus Christ died on the cross, He made it possible for sinful people to be reconciled to God. The apostle Peter said, “For Christ died for sins once for all, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God” (1 Peter 3:18).

Regardless of popular opinion that there are many ways to get to God, Jesus said,

“I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”

John 14:6

It is faith in Jesus Christ and not human effort that brings us to God. There is nothing we can do to earn our salvation. It is grace all the way:

“For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith – and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God – not by works, so that no one can boast.”

Ephesians 2:8 – 9

Yes, God has provided the only way, but we must make the choice. That brings us to step 4, the vital step of faith:

Our Response – Receive Christ

We must all come to the place where we are willing to admit, “I am a sinner.” Then we must be willing to repent, or turn, from our sins. The Bible says, “Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out” (Acts 3:19).

To repent means to change your thinking and to change the direction of your life. It means turning to Jesus Christ, who is the door to eternal life, the door to God and heaven. Jesus said,

“I am the door; if any one enters by me, he [or she] will be saved.”

John 10:9

The door to forgiveness and salvation is through the cross of Christ. By faith, we must trust Him and receive Him as our Saviour and Lord. When we do, we become children of God:

“Yet to all who received Him, to those who believed in His name, He gave the right to become children of God.”

John 1:12

Eternal life then becomes a present possession:

“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.”

John 3:16

By faith we cross the bridge from death to eternal life through the cross.

Now let us look at the four steps as a whole:

God’s Plan – Peace and Life

Our Problem – Separation from God

God’s Remedy – The Cross

Our Response – Receive Christ

Which side are you on?