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Berni - ceo, Christianityworks

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Ephesians 2:8,9 I mean that you have been saved by grace because you believed. You did not save yourselves; it was a gift from God. You are not saved by the things you have done, so there is nothing to boast about.

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The idea that God can forgive us, I think, is an idea that most of us can wrap our minds around. The idea that He could only forgive us through the death and resurrection of His Son … well, that’s not so easy to come to grips with.

As you look down through the history of humanity, every belief system that includes a god or gods involves us humans working our way into the gods’ favour.

The gods are the gods and we’re just the people, so we have to do stuff to appease the gods, otherwise they’ll punish us. It’s always the same basic pattern.

But then one starry night, in a stable in Bethlehem, the pattern was broken. The one true God brought His Son into the world and punished Him to pay for our sin.

And then … then He turned around and said, “If you believe that I punished my Son for you and that I can now forgive you – if you believe that, then you’re forgiven. Then you have eternal life.”

We call that grace, but as easy as that word is to say, it’s much, much harder to wrap our hearts around it because it just doesn’t seem fair (that’s because it isn’t!). The Apostle Paul puts it like this:

Ephesians 2:8,9 I mean that you have been saved by grace because you believed. You did not save yourselves; it was a gift from God. You are not saved by the things you have done, so there is nothing to boast about.

Now the idea of a gift … that, we can understand. Eternal life is a free gift from God given only to those who believe in Jesus. It’s something you can’t earn.

And no matter how many religions, belief systems or gods we try, there’s only one place to receive the grace of God. Jesus

That’s His Word. Fresh … for you … today.


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Janet Botros

Dear Christina,

Great to hear that you are enjoying our devotionals – always most encouraging for us.

Thanks also for sharing your concern over the possibility that some different translations of the Bible may be having negative impacts upon readers’ beliefs. As you may know, the Bible has been translated into some 3,400 of the 7,300 languages used on Earth today and this important work is still going on. Translators down the centuries have been very careful indeed to bring the true meaning of the Bible to readers across many different cultures. To achieve this, they occasionally must employ local idioms, rather than necessarily giving a strict word-by-word translation.

You raise the possibility that different religions may have sprung from the various versions of the Bible. I haven’t seen any evidence for this. Rather, other religions such as Islam, Hinduism and Buddhism have their own texts which are quite different from the Bible and the understanding of God or even gods by those who follow these religions is nothing like our understanding of our God who has visited us here on earth in the person of Jesus and upholds us by the Holy Spirit.

God as worshipped by Christians reaches down to us to draw us to Himself through His Son the Lord Jesus Christ, whereas all other faith systems are based on efforts to appease an angry god.

I have written some notes which follow about how the Bible has come down to us over the past 2,000 years which I thought could be of interest to you. These appear below as an appendix.

My best wishes to you as you attempt to follow the Lord in your life,

Your brother in Christ



Christina

I truly enjoyed today’s words. Thank you, for always sending me this. Do you think people have different religions due to different languages, meaning Jesus name is being said in so many different ways that (lost in translation happens so much we loose the meaning.


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