So, I think we would all agree that God is pretty awesome. Even if you don’t believe in God yet, if all of the things I have mentioned were true, I think you would agree that he is indeed awesome.
Not only is God awesome, but God wanted this world to be awesome. The Bible says that when God made the world, He made humans in His image to be his representatives and to have an intimate relationship with Him. We were meant to be awesome, like Him. It was supposed to be an awesome, carefree life, where we would have perfect relationships with God, with each other, and with nature.
However, we thought we could have a better life if we disobeyed God, even though He warned us that if we did that, we would die. So we chose to go our own way, to distrust and disobey God (Genesis 3). “All of us, like sheep, have strayed away. We have left God’s paths to follow our own” (Isaiah 53:6a NLT). This choice is what the Bible calls sin. At its core, sin means loving anything more than God. As a result of that choice, we became separated from God. Our relationship with God became broken. And this is the same choice we make every day.
So how has this worked out? Well I think we can all agree that this world is not a perfect place and that sin has had very damaging effects. When God made us and put us in his world, we were supposed to be like God and to represent God. But when we rebelled against God, something broke in us. We became sinful. We sin all the time, and it is natural for us. If you look at children for instance, no one has to teach them to sin. Naturally, they lie and are cruel and selfish. We have to teach them to share and be honest and to forgive. We are attracted to sin, and we justify it in our lives. It is hard for us to admit or even believe that we are sinners and that we deserve judgement by God.
The Bible describes this situation as death. Because of sin, we are dead spiritually (our relationship with God, the source of Life, is broken); physically (sin brings sickness and death); mentally/emotionally (we don’t think clearly); and psychologically (we have all kinds of problems).
Since we are broken, our world is broken as well. It is filled with suffering and fear. From war and terrorism to poverty, to addiction, the lists goes on. Our relationships with God and one another, which were supposed to be perfect, are broken among marriages and families (divorce, adultery, abuse, neglect, lack of love); among friends and roommates (conflict); in society (loneliness and isolation); between nations and people groups (war). Basically, instead of life the way it was meant to be, because we are dead we fill the world with death in all its forms.
So how do you think God feels about how we have rebelled against him, mistreated one another and ruined the world he made?
Well, the Bible says that he is filled with grief and anger over what we have done. In fact, God even destroyed the world once with a flood and “regretted that he had made human beings on the earth” (Genesis 6:6). Because God is righteous, he will not allow our terrible behavior to go unpunished forever. One day, God will bring this world to an end, and He will judge all of us based on his righteous standards.
The end result is that, unless something is done, the Bible says that we will all be judged guilty. The result of our choice to sin against God will be locked in, and we will be eternally separated from Him.
What would that look like? Well, the world we live in now, and the death we experience is only a taste of what it means to live apart from God. Imagine what that place will be like! This is what we call hell. A place described as being a “blazing furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth” (Mathew 13:50).
So..think back over your life. How do you think God will judge you in light of his perfect justice and love?
You may be saying though, I’m a good person right? Won’t my good deeds outweigh my bad deeds?
Actually, despite what we have been told all our lives, the Bible says that there is no good person, “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). We sin far more than we realize or care to admit, and far more terribly. And our sinful nature corrupts even our good deeds, so that nothing we do is ever truly good. The Bible says that everyone who is judged based on their deeds will be found guilty and be separated from God.
So what do we do now? Well don’t worry, good news is about to come. In fact, I can guarantee you that it’s the greatest news you will ever hear!