Christian TheologyQUESTION: Christian theology - What are the essentials?ANSWER:
What are the essentials of Christian Theology? It's believing and understanding that God loves us so much that He won't let us go our own way of destruction. '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' (John 3:16).
Jesus' life on earth, His crucifixion, burial, and resurrection on the third day to eternal life are not a story. They are the truth. God gave His son, who was perfect and without sin, to be sacrificed for our transgressions.
By belief we gain righteousness before God. In Romans 3:22-24, the Bible says "This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference, for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus."
If we did not have a perfect sacrifice, God would not be a perfect judge. There is no other way for salvation except through Jesus. And if we are to be judged, then the consequence of our sin is death. Jesus, through His death and resurrection, became our redeemer.
Imagine going to court because you went over the speed limit. You are guilty because of the radar and testimony of a police officer. The judge says "You're guilty and you must be punished." You could be sent to jail until the time set by the judge expires or you may pay a fine and avoid jail time.
In God's court, you stand before Him full of guilt. On your own, you have no way to pay for sin against God even if you tell Him you're sorry. The only way to receive forgiveness from God is through your Defense Attorney, Jesus. He steps in to tell God, "he's one of mine and I'll vouch for him." God says '"Case closed. Go and sin no more."
In John 14:6, Jesus says "I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me." It is only through belief in Jesus Christ that we are saved from sin and death. "For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord" (Romans 6:23).
Jesus said before He died in John 14:19, 'Before long, the world will not see me anymore, but you will see me. Because I live, you also will live.' By accepting the truth of Jesus, He lives in us and through us. He becomes our 'Life' and we'll be with Him in all eternity. These are the essentials of Christian Theology.