The Bad News is that God is good and we are not (Luke 18:19). Because God is good He must punish what is evil. He must punish sin. To sin means to miss the mark, which is God’s perfect standard. The Bible tells us that we have all missed the mark of God’s standard (Romans 3:23). We have all told lies, have taken or have wanted to take what is not ours, and we’ve used God’s name as a curse word either with our words or thought it in our heads. And that’s just 3 of the 10 commandments God has given us to obey! What we receive for missing the mark is death. But not just physical death-we all die-but we also receive spiritual death which is the wrath of God in Hell for all of eternity (2 Thessalonians 8-9).
Jesus came to live the perfect life that we could never live. He never missed God’s mark by sinning, not once! And what did Jesus do after living this perfect life? He died in the place of sinners. He took the punishment that you and I should have received. God takes our sin and puts it on Jesus at the cross. And in response, God takes Jesus’ perfect life and credits it to us! That is the great exchange between sinners and the Savior (2 Corinthians 5:21).
In the Bible, people ask a lot of questions, but one of the most important questions was, “What must I do to be saved?” (Acts 16:30). The response was this, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved.” (Acts 16:31).But what does it mean to believe in Jesus? True belief in Christ is acted out in two ways: Trust and Repentance. To trust Jesus means that he calls the shots with your life. You no longer put yourself or anyone else at the center of your life. You now put Jesus at the center of your life. Repentance means to do a full u-turn. Before Jesus, you were going your own way and living how you thought was best. Now because of what Jesus has done for you on the cross, you turn away from what you thought was best for your life and you now turn to how Jesus wants you to live every day. Both trust and repentance is something that a follower of Jesus does every day!