Why do we so often hear that "Jesus" is the answer to everyone's problems? (top)
Need meaning??: "Jesus". Need happiness??: "Jesus". Need healing??: "Jesus" (or, more likely, "Gee-suz"). Why do so many people consider Jesus to be the answer to every problem we face in life?
For that matter, why do some knock on your door and try to strike up a conversation about him? Why do some travel halfway around the world and live in poverty in his name? Why do others, when confronted by their workmates as to why they won't go out drinking of a Friday night, sheepishly explain that it is because they are a Christian?
The Fundamental Problem (top)
The answer to all these questions - the reason why "Jesus" is used as the answer to so many problems - is because he is in fact the solution to the fundamental problem: by our very nature as humans we ignore God.
We were created by God to fulfil His purposes. That's right, His purpose in creating us (the "meaning of life") is for us to love Him, specifically, to call Him "Father". It's as simple as that. He wants us to talk to Him like we should our earthly fathers; He wants us to respect Him as a Divine Father; He wants us to love Him like a loving and wise dad. This is what we were created for, it should be natural to us, and that's why when we don't, we are unhappy, unfulfilled and lack meaning.
The problem is compunded by the fact that it has become our nature to be self-centred. Our earliest memories are of good or bad happening to us. That time we fell off our bikes. The presents we got at the first Christmas we remember. Our natural instinct is to please ourselves. "What will I use my money for?" or "I can't wait until that holiday!". It's the same for every one of us.
And so the Fundamental Problem is that we were created for a purpose that by nature we now fail to acheive. By being focused on ourselves, we cannot love God.
The Ultimate Solution (top)
If the The Fundamental Problem is that we by nature have ignored God and will continue to do so, the Ultimate Solution would have to include God forgiving us for ignoring Him in the past and also to help us not to ignore him in the present and future. Jesus (and Jesus alone) does both of these.
To be forgiven...
Knowing that not one of us could bear the punishment we deserve for ignoring Him, God offers an alternative. He sent His Son Jesus to live as a man... and to die for all men. He put Jesus on the cross to die the death we deserve. On the cross, the Father (God) withdrew Himself from Jesus - if you like, for a time He "ignored" Jesus, just like we ignore God.
What did this accomplish? Jesus took our punishment - but only if we let Him. Every one of us decides who will take the punishment for our ignorance of God. If we accept our own punishment we'll end up without God forever... or we can accept that Jesus took our punishment on the cross, thank God for it, and humbly ask forgivenss. (Unfortunately, the "defualt option" - the choice you make if you decide to postpone the decision and never get around to making it, is the former of the two.)
To be set free...
So would life after forgiveness become a life of by nature repeatedly ignoring God, and then repeatedly asking forgiveness for every sin (ignoring God's stated will)? Not at all!! Because, together with forgiveness through Jesus, God adopts us as His children. It is not a case of only being forgiven for the sins we specifically repent of: God forgives all sins through Christ to those who ask. He treats us as a loving, understanding and forgiving Father - because that is what He is.
In addition to that, God actually helps us to understand more about Him and helps us to please Him more. Christians aren't perfect (that should be obvious to all), but God helps us to become better; and promises that in the life to come we will be made perfect. This, all as a result of us trusting in Jesus' death for our forgiveness.
...and Only Through Jesus
Jesus, being God's Son, is the only one able to bear the punishment that He bore. He is the only one who lived a sinless life, wholly pleasing to God. Only He died on the cross receiving the devastating wrath we deserve. It is He that the oldest section of the Bible promises "will come", and it is He that the newest parts of the Bible revolve around. It is no wonder that He was able to say "I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me." (John 14:6) And to prove it to be true, after dying on the first Good Friday about 2,000 years ago, He rose again to new life on the first Easter Sunday; and promises that all with faith in Him will similarly rise to everlasting life.
...Jesus is the One Way to God... and that is why He is the "answer" or "solution" we all need.
- If you'd like to read a "one page summary" of the Bible, and what it says about Jesus, try this.
- To find out how to accept God's offer of forgiveness and a renewed relationship, click here.
- To listen to online talks from various speakers about Jesus, click here (RealPlayer).
Who is Jesus? (top)
Jesus Christ is God's only Son. He was not created, but is the second person of the Trinity. This basically just means that Jesus is God, but He is God the Son (see "Trinity" in the theology section).
Jesus was sent by God the Father to earth to live as a man. In His lifetime He performed many miracles, including driving out demons, healing illnesses and ailments, and returning people to good health from the dead. He also taught God's truth to many listeners, speaking with authority and power. He lived an innocent and perfect life.
At around the age of thirty-three, on what is now known as "Good Friday", Jesus was beaten, and then nailed to a cross, and left until He died. Terrible as this is, it was part of God's plan.
On what is now known as "Easter Sunday", Jesus rose from the dead proclaiming the power and love of God. After this, Jesus ascended into Heaven to the right hand of God and is there now. He has promised to come again, and when He does, it will mean the end of the world as we know it.
To find out more about Jesus:
- Read a bit more about Him here; OR
- View the theology entry for "Jesus: God the Son"; OR
- Read about Jesus and His time here.
- Find out why God is the only satisfying thing in our lives here.