How Does Knowing God Impact My Life?
God’s Love and Christian Love
The Bible truly contains the world’s greatest love story. God’s plan for the salvation of humankind culminates in God himself coming to earth, taking on the lowly form of a first century Jew named Jesus, and suffering an innocent death to pay the debt of sin for all people, thus satisfying his own requirement for justice.
Why would God do this when he could have simply wiped out his sin-tainted creation and started over? Jesus gave this statement of explanation to Nicodemus, a member of the Jewish ruling council.
For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son.
Christian love, which was first demonstrated by God through Jesus, is so important that Jesus explicitly commanded that it be reflected by those who believe in him.
My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends. You are my friends if you do what I command.
The Apostle Paul further defined the concept of Christian love in his letter to the church at Corinth. Note that love is described not as feelings, but as actions.
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.
The Meaning of Life
The Bible, a message straight from the creator of the universe, explains the meaning of life as no other source can. Here’s how the Bible answers three important questions we all ask.
Who Am I?
- I am a wonderful creation of God. See Psalm 139.
- I am someone worth more than all the gold and silver in the world.
For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your forefathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect. He was chosen before the creation of the world, but was revealed in these last times for your sake. Through him you believe in God, who raised him from the dead and glorified him, and so your faith and hope are in God.
- I am a precious child of God.
You are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus, for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.
Why Am I Here?
- I am here to find God.
Paul then stood up in the meeting of the Areopagus and said: Men of Athens! I see that in every way you are very religious. For as I walked around and looked carefully at your objects of worship, I even found an altar with this inscription: To An Unknown God. Now what you worship as something unknown I am going to proclaim to you. The God who made the world and everything in it is the Lord of heaven and earth and does not live in temples built by hands. And he is not served by human hands, as if he needed anything, because he himself gives all men life and breath and everything else. From one man he made every nation of men, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he determined the times set for them and the exact places where they should live. God did this so that men would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from each one of us. For in him we live and move and have our being. As some of your own poets have said, We are his offspring.
- I am here to make a difference.
You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled by men. You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.
- I am here to lead others to God.
So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God. God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
Where Am I Going?
- I am going where God will be with me.
And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.
- I am going where God will work for my good.
And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.
- I am going to heaven where all will be good.
Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away. He who was seated on the throne said, I am making everything new! Then he said, Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.
Holy Word Lutheran Church is part of a larger world-wide synod of like-minded churches called the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod. The website of our Synod is an excellent source of information regarding our beliefs and doctrinal differences with other denominations.
Feel free to contact one of our staff who can answer more of your questions about our beliefs and how it relates to you.