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This topic is adapted from the Bryan & Tracy Dwyer YouTube channel. This is part 1 of 3 in our Foundations series. See also the youth edition and kids edition.

Jesus himself taught that life and faith boil down to two simple tasks: loving God and loving people (Matthew 22:37-40). This shows just how important relationships are to God. But how does a relationship with God even start? The Bible teaches that it’s not about how good you are or how hard you try to please him. This, we’ll find out, is good news. But first we must start with the bad news.

Our Problem Is Sin

According to the Bible, people are not “right with God” by nature. The world is broken, along with everyone in it. A simple definition of sin is this: “trusting and acting on your own opinions or feelings instead of trusting and acting on God’s truth.” That’s what Adam and Eve did in Genesis 3. And that’s what we all still do today. And sin has its consequences:

Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death.

Sin can bring great destruction into every person’s life: relationally, financially, emotionally, and even physically. But the ultimate penalty of sin is spiritual death. Because of our sin problem, we are subject to eternal separation from God.

[Related: Understanding the Sinful Nature]

Our Solution Is Jesus

The good new is that God wasn’t OK with leaving us in our broken condition. He sent Jesus as the solution to our sin problem. Jesus came to earth, lived a sinless life, and died on cross. And he did it all to solve our sin problem and put us in a position to be saved.

Galatians 1:4 Jesus gave his life for our sins, just as God our Father planned, in order to rescue us from this evil world in which we live.

Jesus lived a perfect life, so he did not owe God a death. When he went to the cross, he died in our place – paying the penalty of our sins.

[Related: What It Means the Jesus Saves]

Our Response Is Faith

But the work of Christ on the cross does nothing for us until we respond. The Bible teaches that each individual must make a personal decision to trust Jesus for salvation. The faith moment requires two things: the right information about Jesus (and us) and the right attitude toward God (called repentance). It doesn’t take a lifetime of good works; happens in a moment.

[Related: Make Sure You Get Jesus Right]

Romans 10:9-10 If you openly declare that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is by believing in your heart that you are made right with God, and it is by openly declaring your faith that you are saved.

Romans 3:22 We are made right with God by placing our faith in Jesus Christ. And this is true for everyone who believes, no matter who we are.

When you’re ready for your faith moment, you can respond in faith with a simple prayer. Do it with a friend, mentor, or small group – and then continue to pursue God together.

[Related: Getting to the Faith Moment]

[See Also: Learn more about Step 1 in your pursuit of God]

Discussion Questions:

  1. Watch the video together or invite someone to summarize the topic.
  2. What is your initial reaction to this video? Do you disagree with any of it? What jumped out at you?
  3. What did you grow up believing about religion (Jesus, heaven, etc)?
  4. Read Romans 3:23. Do you agree that everyone chooses their own path? Give an example from your own life.
  5. Read Romans 6:23. Make a list of the ways sin can bring “death” into our lives.
  6. Why does it offend some people today to think that Jesús did 100% of the work to save us?
  7. Read Romans 3:22. Talk about what it means to be made “right with God”. Is it hard to believe that anyone can be made right with God by trusting in Jesus? Explain.
  8. Where do you stand in your pursuit of God (learn more)? Have you had your “faith moment”? If so, when was it? If not, are you ready to trust in Jesus today? Talk about getting to the faith moment.
  9. Write a personal action step based on this conversation.

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