Hope for a Planet in Crisis

Lesson

4

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In 1914, ice prevented British explorer Ernest Shackleton and a crew from reaching Antarctica, where they were to attempt to become the first people in history to cross the great southern continent on foot. When the ice destroyed their ship, they sailed in small lifeboats to Elephant Island, a remote, barren island near the bottom of the world. Shackleton and five crewmen then attempted one of history’s most daring rescues—sailing one of the wooden lifeboats 800 miles in an effort to find help and save his crew.
For several months, most of Shackleton’s crew waited. Their only hope for survival was Ernest Shackleton, because no one else knew where they were.
Our planet finds itself in a similar situation to that of Shackleton’s men. Because of sin, our world is hopelessly lost and in need of outside help. But there is one Person who is able to save the inhabitants of planet Earth. Read on and discover what the Bible says about being saved from sin!
How did sin enter the world?

And ___________ broke out in heaven.
Hint

The Bible tells us that, long ago, an angel named Lucifer rebelled against the government of God. There was war in heaven as God attempted to contain the outbreak of sin, and as Lucifer attempted to receive in heaven the worship that belonged only to God. (Isaiah 14:13, 14)
Hint

Satan tempted Eve to doubt what God had said—to reject some of the plainest words God could have spoken. God had told Adam and Eve not to eat the fruit that grew on “the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.” (Genesis 2:16, 17) In choosing Satan’s suggestions over God’s clear word, Eve chose distrust of God over faith in God.
What was the result of Eve choosing to sin?

Your iniquities have ___________________ you from your God; and your sins have hidden His face from you, so that He will not hear.
Hint

Sin separates us from God, because God is the source of life. (John 17:3; 1 John 5:12; John 5:40) Eve’s lack of faith in God—her disobedience—caused a fracture in her relationship with God and separated her from the One who is the source of all life.

Sin created a gulf between the human family and the God of heaven, and caused humanity to pass from life to death. Romans 5:12 says that as a result of the sin of Adam and Eve, sin “spread to all.”
How did sin affect Adam and Eve’s descendants?

The wages of sin is .
Hint

Sin leads to death. And every person on Earth is affected, because “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3:23) The entire human family faces eternal death as a result of sin having entered the world.
Whether the sin is murder, drunkenness, pride, lying, stealing, gossip or fraud—whatever the sin, the consequence is the same: death.
Hint

God has made a way of escape from the death penalty sin introduced to the world. Through Jesus, every person alive can receive the gift of eternal life!
First Corinthians 15:3 says, “Christ died for our sins.” The penalty for sin was— and is—death. But Jesus died to pay that penalty, to pay a debt we could never pay. As God (John 1:1), the death of Jesus—the Lawgiver—would be sufficient to pay the price of the sins of the human race.
How may a person receive the gift of everlasting life through Jesus Christ?

For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.
Hint

Belief in Jesus Christ is the prerequisite for receiving the gift of everlasting life. And notice: it is a gift. God gives salvation to those who seek it. Eternal life cannot be bought or earned. It is given by God as a gift.
Hint

Nobody deserves eternal life! Every person has sinned against God, and the wages of sin is death. Salvation from sin is received by grace, through faith. God’s grace—His power to forgive and cleanse from sin—extends salvation to the human family. Salvation is received by faith—the decision to believe that God can be relied upon, based on the promises in the Bible.
Hint

When Jesus offered to visit a man’s home and heal his servant, the man said that all Jesus needed to do was to speak and the servant would be healed. He believed that God’s word was able to do what it said it would do.
In response, Jesus said, “I have not found such great faith, not even in Israel.” The man’s complete trust in Christ’s word was an example of true faith. Faith says, “If God said it, I expect it to be so.”
When God says He gives you everlasting life, believing He does so and expecting God’s promise to be true is a demonstration of faith in action. God promises to forgive us for our sins and to give us everlasting life. Faith is simply choosing to believe what God has said—believing that the gift of everlasting life is yours!
Another biblical example of faith is found in the experience of Abraham. Romans 4:20, 21 says, “He did not waver at the promise of God through unbelief, but was strengthened in faith, giving glory to God, and being fully convinced that what He had promised He was also able to perform.” Faith is a settled belief in God’s ability to do what the Word of God says God will do.
How do I receive forgiveness for my sins?

_______________ therefore and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out.
Hint

To repent is to turn away from sin. A repentant sinner is sorry for the sins that he or she has committed, and—acknowledging the sinfulness of sin—turns from sin to embrace the righteousness of God.
Hint

When we sincerely confess our sins to God in prayer, God forgives us and cleanses us. We know for certain we are forgiven simply because we believe God’s promise to us. That is, we accept God’s forgiveness by faith. We confess, and God forgives. It really is that simple!
After being forgiven for my sins, how can I live the life God wants me to live?

Therefore to God.
Hint

A vital key in living a satisfying Christian life is submission to God. Christianity is not simply a matter of believing certain ideas or principles—it’s a life lived in surrender to the will of God.
Can I repent of my sins and confess them to God with confidence that He will accept me?

The one who comes to Me I will by no _____________ cast out.
Hint

 
Jesus pledges to accept all who come to Him in faith. It is not possible to be so sinful as to be beyond the reach of the grace of God. In Revelation 3:20, Jesus says, “Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him.” Anyone! As long as you are willing for Jesus to accept and forgive and change and save you, He will do so. He has promised.



Four Simple Steps to Salvation

Believe — John 3:16
Repent — Acts 3:19
Confess — 1 John 1:9
Submit — James 4:7

Jesus described the process of coming to faith in Him as the “new birth.” As He explained to Nicodemus, in order to receive the gift of salvation, a person must be “born again.” (John 3:3)

That means a person is remade by God through the grace of God—given an entirely new nature, which creates a new life in place of the old, sinful life. As Paul wrote to the Corinthians, “Old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.” (2 Corinthians 5:17)
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Hint

After accepting the gift of eternal life from Jesus, a person lives surrendered to the will of God, in each moment yielding to Jesus and asking that His will be done in his or her life. As it says in Philippians 2:13, “For it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure.”
When we accept Jesus as our Savior from sin, yield our lives to Him and then allow Him to live His life in us, we can be confident the gift of eternal life is ours and we are living with heaven in view!
Hint

Jesus clearly told us that the life of faith is a life of growth. With each passing day, we learn to yield more fully to the presence of God in our lives, so that His will may be done through us.

Jesus offers you the free gift of salvation. Will you invite Jesus into your life today, accept Him as your Savior, and allow Him to live His life in you?



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