If you have heard anything about Jesus, you probably have thought about that question. But not everyone answers that question in the same way.
For example, many people say that Jesus was a prophet.* They say that Jesus spoke for God. We believe that too. But we believe that Jesus was much more than a prophet.
Other people say that Jesus was a wise man, a teacher. And during his life, Jesus taught many true and helpful things. We believe that too. But we believe that Jesus was much more than a wise teacher.
Some people say that Jesus was a good example to follow. He lived the kind of life that all people should try to live. We believe that too. If we all lived as Jesus did, we would be better people. The world would be a better place. But we believe that Jesus was much more than a good example.
We built this website to tell people about Jesus. We believe that Jesus was more than a prophet or a wise man, or a good example. We believe that Jesus is God. We believe that, in Jesus, God became a man to rescue us from our greatest problem. And we believe that he did this because he loved us.
One of the men who wrote about Jesus said it this way:
God loved the world so much that he gave his only Son, Jesus. God did this so that whoever puts his trust* in Jesus will not be lost, but will have life that lasts forever.
So, What Do You Believe About Jesus?
If you have never heard anyone speak about Jesus in this way, you may have some questions. One of those questions might be, ‘What did Jesus come to rescue the world from? Why do we need to be rescued?’
We find the answer to that question in the Bible. The story begins in the first book of the Bible, named Genesis. And, as you will see, the story continues through the whole Bible to the very last chapter.
From Adam* to Abraham*
The Bible begins with God. God has always been. And God decided to make the world. He made the heavens. He made the earth. And he filled them with good things. Then God made a man named Adam. He made a woman named Eve.* He put them in a beautiful garden. He gave them all that they needed. They could eat the fruit of every tree in the garden. And each time they ate, they could give thanks to the God who made them. But God told them that there was only one thing that they could not do. They could not eat from one of the trees in the middle of the garden. The fruit from that tree would not be good for them. If they ate from that tree, they would die. Each time they did not eat from the tree, they showed that they honored* the God who made them and gave them all good things.
One day, a snake came into the garden. Satan,* the Evil One,* used the snake to tell Eve a lie. He told her to eat the fruit that God told them not to eat. He told her that nothing bad would happen to them. So, they chose to believe* that lie. They chose not to obey God. They ate the fruit. When they did, they turned away from the God who made them. They did not honor God. They sinned.* Now they could not live with God in the place he had made for them. God sent them away from the garden. And they could never return there. They would have to live outside of the garden until they died. But God loved the man and woman that he had made. And he did not leave them. He watched over them. He gave them clothes to cover them. He gave them children. And he gave them a promise. God said that he would give them a son. He said that one day, that son would crush the head of the snake, the Evil One.
After Adam and Eve left the garden, many things happened. One of their sons killed his brother. Their children and their children’s children grew more in number. They built cities. But, like Adam and Eve, they did not honor God. They sinned. As more and more people began to live on the earth, they became more and more evil.*
From Abraham to Moses*
Many years went by. But God was not finished with the people on the earth. He had a plan to rescue them. So God chose a man named Abram.* God made him a promise. He told Abram that he would bless* him. He would give him a land of his own. He would give him a son. Then, God changed Abram’s name to Abraham. God told Abraham that he would bless all of the nations because of him.
Later, Abraham did have a son. His name was Isaac.* Isaac became a man and also had a son. His name was Jacob.* Jacob grew to be a man and he had 12 sons. God changed Jacob’s name too. He called him Israel.* And the sons of Jacob became known as the children of Israel.
After many years, there was a time when there was no food in the land that God gave to Abraham. So Jacob and his family moved to Egypt.* Not many years after they moved to Egypt, the king of Egypt made them slaves. They lived there for 400 years. But God did not leave the people he had chosen.
From Moses to David*
One day, God came to a man named Moses. God told Moses that he was going to take the children of Israel back to the land that God gave Abraham. This was a very difficult task. But God helped Moses. And, after all the children of Israel came out of Egypt, God made another promise. He told them that he would bless them. He would give them the land that he promised Abraham. And they would become a great nation.
God also gave Israel rules to help them live for God. When they obeyed God’s ways, God would bless them. If they did not obey, God would not bless them. But if the people did not obey him, God made a way that they could be right with him again. The people could confess* to God and make a sacrifice* to God. Then, God would forgive* them for what they had done. The animal would die as a sacrifice so that the one who sinned could live.
After many years and after many troubles, the people did go into the land that God gave them. They lived there for many years. God was with them. He sent men and women to lead them. These leaders were called judges.*
From David to exile*
But the people of Israel wanted to be ruled like other nations. So, God gave the people what they wanted: a king. The first king did not follow God. So, God gave them a second king. His name was David.* Just like he had with Abraham and Moses, God made a special promise to David. He promised to make a great nation from his family. He promised that one of David’s sons would rule Israel. This son would also be the king of all of the nations in all of the world. His kingdom* would last forever.
While David was king, God blessed Israel. David built a great kingdom. The people were strong. The land was safe. David was not a perfect man, but he loved God.
David had a son named Solomon.* After David died, Solomon became king. God made him great too. Solomon built a special house for God called the temple.* The temple was a place where the people came to worship* God. But, after Solomon died, there was trouble in the land of Israel.
The nation broke apart. The people in the north part of the country chose a different king. They took the name Israel. The people in the south chose their own king. They took the name Judah.*
In those days, God spoke to his people through special men and women. These people were called prophets. They told the people to come back to God. They said that God would punish them if they did not return to him. God would let their enemies come and take them away from the land. Their enemies would take Israel and Judah from their land to a land that was not their own.
God warned them. But they did not listen. So, God sent armies to fight against them. They overcame Israel. They took the people from the land. It was a very sad time for God’s people.
But God sent prophets to comfort them. The prophets said that God loved them, and he would not forget them. He would remember the promises that he had made to them. And, one day, God would bring them back to the land that he promised to Abraham.
From exile to return
For many years, the people of God lived in exile. But, one day, God brought many of the people back to the land. The people built the temple again. Then, they built the walls of the city again. And soon, God sent leaders to remind them of the ways Moses had taught them to live. The people of Israel came back to their land.
But they were not a great nation any longer. They had no king. People still had to make sacrifices to be right with God. But the prophets told them to have hope.* God keeps his promises and would still keep the promises he made to Abraham, Moses and David. God would send the son he promised Abraham. God would live among his people like he had promised Moses. God would give a son from David’s family who would rule all of the nations.
From return to Jesus
So, the people waited. For almost 400 years, there was no new word from God. No prophets spoke. No kings came to rule. But God did not leave the people he had chosen.
One day, an angel* came to a young virgin* named Mary.* He told her that God had chosen to do a miracle* in her. She would have a son. That son would have no man as a father. This son would be called the Son of God.* God said that this son would sit on the throne* of David. He was to be given the name, Jesus.
Soon, Mary did give birth to a son. They named him Jesus. God had become a man. And each day, Jesus grew tall and grew wise. When he grew to be an adult, he chose some men to be his followers.* They went from place to place with him. They heard him say and do many wonderful things. He made blind people see again. He made sick people well again. He even went to people who had died and gave them life again. They saw that he was a holy* man. He did nothing evil.* He always obeyed the laws* of Moses. He did not sin.*
Many people were happy to hear what Jesus said. But many of the people did not believe him. Some of the leaders became angry with him. They said that Jesus spoke in a way that made people think that Jesus was God. They were right. That made the leaders so angry that they decided to kill him.
So, Jesus met with his followers and told them what was going to happen. Soldiers were going to take Jesus and hold him. They were going to kill him. But his followers did not have to be afraid. God would bring Jesus back to life again. And that is just what happened.
But Jesus did not die only because men were angry with him. Jesus died to do something much more important. In Jesus, God was showing his love for the world. Jesus died to make a way that we could be right with God. On the cross,* God punished Jesus for sins he never committed. Jesus took the punishment that a world of sinful* people deserved. He suffered and died as a sacrifice to God. Now people would not have to make sacrifices anymore. Jesus took the punishment that all people would someday have to face. And to show that God accepted the sacrifice that Jesus made, God raised him from the dead.
After Jesus rose from the dead, he spent some time teaching the men and women who believed him. He told them that he would go to be with God soon. But, one day, he would return. When he returns, he will do all of the things that God had promised to Abraham, Moses, and David. But, until then, Jesus told all of his followers to go everywhere and tell everyone the good news about him. They were to say that Jesus is the Son of God. He died and is alive again. All people have sinned. And their sins have separated them from God. But anyone who believes in Jesus, anyone who trusts* his words, will have life that lasts forever. God will forgive them for the evil things that they have done. And, some day, they will live with God. They will go to a place where everything is good and they will never die. But, until then, they would not be alone. Jesus would send the Holy Spirit* to help them.
After Jesus finished saying these things, God took him up through the clouds. And so the followers did what Jesus told them to do. They went everywhere they could go. They told everyone they could tell about Jesus.
From Jesus to now
After many years, God came to one of the first men to follow Jesus named John.* He gave him a dream. He showed him many things about what will happen in the future. He told him that life will be hard for the Christians. He told him that Satan will fight against God and lie to many people. But he told John not to be afraid. Jesus will return to earth. He will defeat Satan. He will judge everyone that ever lived. He will punish Satan and all of those who followed him. And he will gather his people to be with him forever. He will make a new heaven* and a new earth. And he will rule the nations. They will be his people. He will be their God forever.
But that is not the end of the story. In some ways, a new story will just be beginning.
So, what do you think?
Now that you know the story, you must decide something. It is the same thing everyone who has ever heard the story must decide. Do you believe that the story is true? Will you decide to follow Jesus?
Most people can see that the world is not like God intended it to be. We live in a broken world and we are broken too. People make us sad and sometimes we are not happy with ourselves either. We do things that are not good. We think things are not good. Like Adam and Eve, we have not honored the God who made us.
But God loves us and he has been kind to us. He has made a way for us, and for our world to be right with God. But we must believe that Jesus is the son of God. We must believe that he died and is alive again. We must believe in Jesus and trust* his words and we will have life that lasts forever. God will forgive us for the evil things that we have done. And, some day, we will live with God. We will go to a place where everything is good. And we will never be sick or sad or hurt or cry or feel shame. But, until then, we will not be alone. Jesus has sent his Holy Spirit to help us to live a new life.
But following Jesus will not be easy. Satan, the Evil One,* does not want you to honor God. Many people did not like what Jesus said. Some people hated him so much that they wanted to take his life. When you follow Jesus, some people will not be pleased with you. They may even hate you as they hated Jesus. But if you follow Jesus, he will always be with you to guide you and help you.
So, what will you choose? You can choose to live the way you have always lived. You can believe the story that you have always believed. You can trust that your own way is the best way to live. Or you can believe that the story of Jesus is true. Jesus is the Son of God. He lived and died and rose again to rescue people just like you. The only way to be right with God is to trust Jesus. Believe in him. And follow him.
What can you do?
Do you see that the story of Jesus is true? Do you want to follow him? Here is what you can do.
Talk to God
The first thing to do is talk to God. He listens. He has known you since you were first born. There has never been a word that you have spoken that he has not heard. So now, speak to him. Thank him for his great love for you. Tell God that you know that you have done many things that have not pleased him. You know that you need God to show you mercy.* But you have not and could not earn the mercy that you need. So, believe and accept that what he said is true. Trust Jesus to rescue you. Ask God to forgive you and welcome you as one of his people. You could use words like these when you talk to God:
I know that I have done many wrong things that have not pleased you. I do not deserve your mercy. I did not know you or follow you. I need to be forgiven.
Thank you for loving me. Thank you for sending your son to die for people like me so that I could be forgiven. Thank you for bringing Jesus back to life. I ask you to give me a new life too.
I now submit* to Jesus as my ruler and Lord.* Please help me to become the person that you made me to be.
Submit to Jesus and begin to do what Jesus did. Start by talking to God as often as you can. That is what Jesus did. Ask God to be with you and guide you in his ways. Ask God to help you see the things in your life that need to change. You may have old habits that do not honor God. Perhaps you are angry or selfish or you hurt other people. Ask God to change those bad things and make new habits that would honor him. Ask God to make you kind and patient. Ask him to give you courage to follow him in every way.
If you do not have a Bible, ask God to help you find one. Read the scriptures.* As you read the scriptures, God will show you how to live. God will use those words to make you wise when you do not know what to do. And God will use those words to make you strong when you need help.
Do your best to find other people who follow Jesus. We call the people who gather together to worship Jesus, the church.* These are like your brothers and sisters in the family of God. Meet with them. Learn from them. Pray with them. We cannot follow Jesus well if we try to do it alone. God expects us to depend on one another and encourage one another as we follow Jesus.
Never forget that you have been put right with God because of what Jesus did for you. We all need to remember this. Because we will not be perfect even when we try hard and trust God. We will sometimes do things that will not please God. We may fail to love as we should or even fall back into an old, sinful habit. When we do, we must ask God to forgive us and change us. We must ask God to help us to love him with all of our hearts* and mind and strength. God begins his work to make us more and more like Jesus when we believe. His work will continue until we go to be with Jesus or when Jesus comes again to be with us.