Faith in Jesus Christ brings us peace with God; and also brings us joy when we face all kinds of suffering.
Heroic self-sacrifice is rarely seen in peacetime, but when it happens it becomes a media event. We love to read a story of bravery. Paul's argument about the sacrifice of Jesus Christ is different.
The problem with Christless religion is that you never know if you have done enough to satisfy the Divine standard.
Is 'sin' just a legal matter - the breaking of a law? Is it only Jews who sin if they break the law of Moses? No! Before Moses there was no law but there was sin.
The sinful actions of Adam and Eve were over in a moment; but the consequences have lasted though every subsequent generation right up to the present time.
Jewish law demanded 'an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth'. Personal injury to other people must be paid for personally - the punishment would be the same as the injury caused.
It sounds terrible, and it is terrible: the sin of one person has resulted in everybody being condemned.
Some people think that the definition of sin is "breaking a law". But no! Adam, Noah and Abraham did not have the law of Moses, but they were still sinners.
God's grace is wonderful! But is it too good? If God freely gives eternal life instead of punishment, what is to stop us continuing to sin?
Some people see baptism as a nice ceremony, a welcome into the church. It is, but far more than that.
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