Big Questions Section
This section includes answers to some big questions. We don’t claim to have the answers (only God has all the answers!) But we hope and pray this helps you and the young people you work with. These are not definitive and you may way disagree or be able to add more, but they hopefully act as an inspiration or starting point.
There are 18 questions answered here. We must credit “When Skeptics Ask” by Norman Geisler and “Cosmic Codes” by Chuck Missler, “It makes sense” by Stephen Gaukroger and the website http://carm.org/ (Christian Research and Apologetics Ministry). We’ve tried our very best to give easy answers to the questions and then more advanced / detailed answers and even further study.
But I’ve been a good person! What about me?
First of all, I’m glad you’re a good person!
But now… Imagine you are running in a race. Say it’s a 500m race. You’re running around the track. To reach the end of the race, you have to run around the track 12 1/2 times. In this race, there are 20 athletes. Some of them drop out after a few laps; others retire from the race half way through; a few get injured around 10 laps in; someone gives up after 11 laps; two people trip and get injured on the 12th lap. Only a few of the 20 athletes actually cross the line at the end of the race, having done 12 1/2 laps. Only those people have fulfilled the race, have done what it takes to do 5000m. Some have fallen short half a lap before the end; others fell out of the race near the start. To do the 5000m race, you have to complete the 12 1/2 laps.
So what’s this got to do with anything?! Well, most people do good things. Some do more than others; some people do loads of amazing things. But the Bible tells us that in the ‘race’ to get to know God, everyone falls short – no one makes the finish line. Everyone needs a helping hand to the cross the line and the way of getting there is via the Cross and via Jesus. The Bible tells us that Jesus is the one who gets us over the line of life’s race. Nearly making it isn’t good enough. Being good isn’t the condition for being made right with God and getting to heaven, just as completing 12 laps isn’t the way to successfully complete a 12 1/2 lap. The way, the gate, the access point is Jesus.
Romans 3 says, “…for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God…” We can think we are good; we can do more ‘good’ than other people. But the only standard of ‘good’ is what God says and God says that the only way to be ‘good’ is through believing in Jesus. Only he was able to make the sacrifice for us and pay the price, living a perfect sinless life.
In Mark 10.18, Jesus answered the question from a man who called Jesus ‘good teacher’. Jesus replied that only God is good. Now Jesus wasn’t saying that he wasn’t good because we know that Jesus is God. So therefore Jesus was also saying that he was good (as God). He was also pointing to the fact that humanity isn’t good, only God. So when we compare ourselves with God we aren’t good – we’re not even close!
Someone once said – imagine that there is a power line into your house. You can make a small break in that line, or you can hack it to pieces; you can make one hole in it or you can make many holes in the cable. But whatever you do, the power will be broken. It doesn’t matter if you do one thing wrong, you cannot be made right with God.
When Jesus died on the cross, he cried out “My God, why have you left me?” God had to turn away from his own Son who was carrying the sin of the world. Jesus was like the power engineer who can fix the cable and restore the power. The thing is, that power cable isn’t going to fix itself – if you leave the cable, the power won’t come back on. Only by asking the power engineer to fix the cable will the power be restored. It is only through asking Jesus into our life that our relationship with God can be restored and the power switched on.
Revelation 21.27 (the very last verse in the Bible) tells us this about heaven (where God lives and where God’s people will live forever)… “Nothing impure will ever enter it, nor will anyone who does what is shameful or deceitful, but only those whose names are written in the Lamb’s book of life.”Your name is written in the Lamb’s book of life if you accept Jesus into your life as he was the only one who could pay the price (see the Bible book of Revelation in chapter 5). There is no other way to God.
The Bible also says this, “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith – and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God – not by works, so that no one can boast.” Ephesians 2:8-9. This means that we are not good enough on our own. It is only through the ‘gift’ of God (believing in Jesus) that we can be ‘saved’ (this means getting right with God).
One final thought: many people on the earth haven’t heard of God – people who are alive and people from the past. What we do know about God is that he is just and fair. Those who haven’t heard about God will be judged fairly by God. In another Bible book called Romans (Chapter 1), we learn that God has revealed himself to the world in his creation and put a conscience inside every person. But if you have heard about Jesus and choose to reject him, the Bible talks about a place called hell which is somewhere you don’t want to be. This isn’t about scaring you, but it’s important to know the truth about what the Bible says.