Christ Came to Save Sinners:
From Creation to Christ
Discover who Jesus Christ is and why you need to be saved as you find out answers to people’s most-asked questions about God, life, and eternity.
Where did I come from?
The only way to answer this question is to go back to the beginning. At about 4,000 B.C., God created the universe in six 24-hour days (Genesis 1–21). In the Ten Commandments, God said, “[‘]For in six days the LORD made [the] heaven[s] and [the] earth, the sea, and all that [is in them], and rested the seventh day[’]” (Exodus 20:11a). In this verse, day means a literal 24-hour day since God ordered the Israelites to only work six days each week on the basis of His six workdays for making the universe (Exodus 20:8–11).
After God created the earth, plants, heavenly objects (the sun, moon, and stars), and animals, He created man (humans) on the sixth day of Creation (Genesis 1:26–27). Man is unique compared to animals since “God created man in His own image” (Genesis 1:27). God formed Adam, the first man, from the dust of the ground (Genesis 2:7). Later that day, God made Eve, the first woman, from Adam’s side (Genesis 2:22).
God created Adam and Eve to have a right relationship with Him (Genesis 3:8). He told them to have children, spread over the earth, and rule over the earth and all the animals (Genesis 1:28). At the end of the sixth day, God said that His entire creation was “very good” (Genesis 1:31).
What happened to God’s “very good” creation?
God created Satan as one of the angels (Colossians 1:16). Satan sinned by rebelling against God through pride (1 Timothy 3:6). Furthermore, Satan persuaded one-third of God’s created angels to sin by rebellion too (Revelation 12:4). To sin means to disobey God in thought, word, or action.
Appearing as a serpent in the Garden of Eden (Genesis 3), Satan tempted and deceived Eve into disobeying God’s command to not eat from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil (Genesis 2:16–17; 3:1–6). After Eve sinned, she gave the tree’s fruit to Adam who also sinned by eating it (Genesis 3:6). Adam listened to Eve and then sinned (Genesis 3:17), yet he was not deceived (1 Timothy 2:14).
Adam and Eve’s disobedience dramatically changed their relationship with God and their whole being (Genesis 3:7–13). Adam and Eve were created naked (Genesis 2:25); but after they sinned, their newly acquired knowledge made them aware that nakedness is shameful. Consequently, they sewed fig leaves to clothe themselves (Genesis 3:7). They also suffered spiritual death, which broke their right relationship with God, as shown by their attempt to hide from God (Genesis 3:8). Despite their sin, God called for Adam and questioned Adam and Eve to obtain their confessions (Genesis 3:9–13). Their blame-shifting answers to God’s questions revealed that they had also instantly received a sin nature (tendency to sin) when Adam and Eve initially disobeyed (Genesis 3:12–13).
Then God pronounced sentences on the guilty parties: Satan, Eve, and Adam (Genesis 3:14–19). He announced Satan’s demise by lovingly promising man that the Christ (Messiah), the Seed of the woman, would vanquish Satan (Genesis 3:15). He sentenced Eve to bear children in pain and to want to rule over her husband, and He sentenced Adam to produce food with difficulty and to die physically (Genesis 3:16–19). Man experiences physical death since all people sinned in Adam, who was man’s representative (Romans 5:12–14).
God also cursed the rest of His creation, which consists of animals and inanimate objects, by subjecting it to futility (Romans 8:20).
After Adam and Eve’s sentencing, God supplied them with garments of skins for proper attire (Genesis 3:21). To clothe Adam and Eve, God apparently sacrificed animals, whose blood was shed. The idea that the shed blood of an animal sacrifice covers sin can be inferred from this incident on the basis of additional Biblical revelation. Therefore, God not only provided clothing for the first couple but also covered their sin.
Later, God gave the nation of Israel the Law in which He commanded them to use the blood of animal sacrifices to atone for, or cover, people’s sins (Leviticus 17:11). The shed blood of these animal sacrifices foreshadowed the precious shed blood of the Christ (Messiah) (Hebrews 9:12).
Then God expelled Adam and Eve from the Garden of Eden (Genesis 3:22–24). Subsequently, Adam and Eve had children, and their children had children, and so on (Genesis 4–5).
Were there later events that also affected today's world?
Several later historical events also occurred that have influenced the present world.
In Noah’s time, man was extremely wicked (Genesis 6:5–6). As a result, God decided to destroy man and land-dwelling animals with a global flood except for a remnant (Genesis 6–9). Noah found grace (unmerited favor) from God and had a right and close relationship with Him (Genesis 6:8–9). God told Noah to build the Ark, a big seaworthy vessel, to rescue Noah and his family and God’s chosen number of each land-dwelling animal from the Flood (Genesis 6:13–7:16). Noah’s family consisted of him and his wife and his three sons and their wives (eight people).
The Flood began 120 years after God first declared judgment (Genesis 6:3, 7; 7:11). The Floodwaters rose and covered the entire earth, which included the mountains at that time (Genesis 7:17–20). Outside the Ark, every person and land-dwelling animal died (Genesis 7:21–23). Noah and those with him lived in the Ark for slightly over one year (Genesis 7–8).
After the Flood, God told Noah and his sons to have children and spread over the earth (Genesis 9:1). Noah’s three sons started repopulating the earth by having children (Genesis 10). Eventually, man, who shared one language, migrated to a plain and dwelt there (Genesis 11:1–2). He also decided to build a city and a tower to make a name for himself and stay together in one place (Genesis 11:3–4). God’s command to spread over the earth was disobeyed.
In judgment, God confused their one common language, by giving family groups different languages (Genesis 10:5, 20, 31), to cause misunderstanding between people (Genesis 11:5–7). He also scattered man over the earth (Genesis 11:8). Nations formed because God intervened at Babel (Genesis 10–11).
God chose the descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob to become the nation of Israel (Genesis 11:27–50:26). He also said the Christ (Messiah) would descend from Abraham (Genesis 22:18), Judah (Genesis 49:10), and David (Jeremiah 23:5).
What is God like?
God can be described through His many perfect attributes. God is triune (Matthew 28:19); one God exists in three Persons – Father, Son (the Lord Jesus Christ), and Holy Spirit. God is holy (Isaiah 6:3); He is set apart from every created thing and absolutely separate from sin. God is eternal (Psalm 90:2); He has no beginning or end. God is righteous (Psalm 11:7); He always does what is right. God is sovereign (Daniel 4:34–35, 37); He has supreme authority over all things. God is all-powerful (Jeremiah 32:17), all-knowing (Psalm 147:5), and everywhere present (Jeremiah 23:24). God has other perfect traits.
Why am I here?
You are here to have a right relationship with God, and then to serve Him. You must understand your current standing with God before you can have a right relationship with Him.
As a result of Adam’s sin, man is born spiritually dead and naturally sinful. Spiritual death separates man from a right relationship with God (John 3:1–8). The sin nature influences man to sin (Galatians 5:19–21a).
Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ, states that man is subject to sin as his master (Romans 3:9): “As it is written, [‘]There is none righteous, no, not one[;] There is none [who] understand[s], there is none [who] seek[s] after God. They [have] all [turned aside], they [have] together become [useless]; there is none [who] doe[s] good, no, not one[’]” (Romans 3:10–12). These quoted Old Testament verses show man’s complete sinfulness. In summary, Paul explains, “For all have sinned, and [fall] short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). In other words, all people are sinners and fail to display God’s perfect character.
All sins are ultimately committed against God (Psalm 51:4). As a result, sin has a penalty (Isaiah 66:24). If you have not been saved from the penalty for sin, then you cannot have a right relationship with God, and you are an unsaved person (unbeliever).
What is the penalty for sin?
The penalty for sin is eternal punishment in the Lake of Fire. At physical death, the spirit is separated from the body (James 2:26). Unsaved people’s spirits are sent to Hades at physical death to suffer torment (Luke 16:19–31) and await the Great White Throne Judgment (Revelation 20:11–15).
God the Father has given all judgment to His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ (John 5:22). At various judgments (Ezekiel 20:33–38; Matthew 25:31–46; Revelation 20:11–15), He will judge unsaved people (spirit and body) according to their works (Romans 2:6; Revelation 20:12–13). At these judgments, all unsaved people will be cast into the Lake of Fire (Matthew 13:40–42; 25:41; Revelation 20:15), where they will be tormented forever (Mark 9:43–48). Unsaved people will suffer different degrees of punishment in the Lake of Fire (Luke 12:47–48). Eternal punishment in the Lake of Fire is known as the second death (Revelation 21:8).
Satan and evil angels will also be cast into the Lake of Fire, which was prepared for them (Matthew 25:41), to be tormented forever (Revelation 20:10; Matthew 8:28–29).
Can my good works save me from the penalty for sin?
Your good works cannot save you from eternal punishment. Paul said, “For by grace [you (plural) have been] saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, [that no one] should boast” (Ephesians 2:8–9). Salvation is God’s gift. Paul also wrote to Titus, “Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to [God’s] mercy He saved us ...” (Titus 3:5). You can never earn salvation via your good works; instead, your salvation depends on God’s mercy and grace.
Can Christ save me from the penalty for sin?
The Lord Jesus Christ can save you from the penalty for your sins. God has provided a way for you to have a right relationship with Him on the basis of Jesus Christ’s sacrificial death and resurrection and on the basis of your response to God’s salvation offer.
Knowledge about the Lord Jesus Christ’s Person and the Gospel (Good News) is essential for your salvation.
Jesus is the Christ (Messiah) (John 20:31). The title “Christ” or “Messiah” means “Anointed” or “Anointed One,” and Jesus is the Anointed One predicted in Old Testament prophecy(OTP) (Daniel 9:25–26OTP). In His First Coming, Jesus fulfilled many Old Testament prophecies about the Christ as recorded in the New Testament. For example, Jesus is the Christ who is a Man (Isaiah 7:14OTP; Galatians 4:4), an Israelite (Jeremiah 23:5OTP; Romans 1:3), and God (Micah 5:2OTP; Titus 2:13).
Jesus Christ is the Son of God (John 20:31). The title “Son of God” refers to Christ’s identity as God (John 19:7). The title also refers to the relationship between God the Father and Christ as the Son (John 5; 17).
Jesus Christ is Lord (Romans 10:9–10). After Christ’s resurrection, the title “Lord” usually expresses His deity, with an emphasis on His supreme authority over all things. Christ is often called the Lord after His resurrection, but God the Father is given the title too.
The Lord Jesus Christ is God (John 1:1; 8:24, 58;2 Hebrews 1:8; 2 Peter 1:1). After seeing the resurrected Jesus Christ, Thomas, a disciple, said to Him, “My Lord and my God” (John 20:28). Thomas’ statement revealed his faith that Christ was God. The Lord Jesus also accepted his remark (John 20:29).
The eternal Son of God became a man (human) (Philippians 2:5–8), yet without a sin nature (Luke 1:35), through the Holy Spirit’s work of a miraculous virgin conception (human beginning) in Mary (the Incarnation; Isaiah 7:14OTP; Matthew 1:18–23). Since Christ’s conception, He is both fully God and fully man in one Person (Colossians 2:9). In the city of Bethlehem (Micah 5:2OTP; Matthew 2:1–6), Mary, as a virgin, gave birth to Jesus Christ (Isaiah 7:14OTP; Matthew 1:23–25). He was an Israelite by birth (Luke 3:23–38).
God the Father sent His Son on a mission: “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners” (1 Timothy 1:15). Christ’s main purpose for becoming a man was to be the Savior of mankind. Jesus Christ lived a sinless life (2 Corinthians 5:21). As He sacrificially died on the cross (1 Peter 2:24), He shed His blood for the forgiveness of man’s sins (Blood Atonement; Leviticus 17:11; Hebrews 9:22). In addition, Jesus Christ was man’s sinless Substitute who paid the penalty for man’s sins through His sacrificial death (Substitutionary Atonement; Isaiah 53:5–6OTP; 1 Corinthians 15:3; 1 Timothy 2:5–6).
The Gospel (Good News) that Paul repeated to believers at Corinth in a letter began with Jesus Christ’s sacrificial death. Paul stated “that Christ died for our sins according to the [S]criptures” (1 Corinthians 15:3; Scriptures fulfilled: Isaiah 53:5–6OTP). The Lord Jesus died as a sacrifice for man’s sins in man’s place.
Paul continued by declaring that Christ “was buried” and “that He [was raised on] the third day according to the [S]criptures” (1 Corinthians 15:4; Scriptures fulfilled: Psalm 16:10OTP). His burial verified His death. Three days after He was buried, God the Father raised Christ from the dead (the Resurrection; Acts 10:40; Galatians 1:1). The Lord Jesus was raised in the same physical body in which He died, yet it had changed into a glorified body (Luke 24:36–43; Philippians 3:20–21). Christ is no longer subject to death since His resurrection (Romans 6:9).
After His resurrection, Christ appeared to “witnesses chosen before by God” the Father (Acts 10:40–41). Paul told about several post-resurrection appearances by stating that Christ appeared to Peter, “the twelve,” more than 500 brethren at one time, James, all the apostles, and Paul (after Christ was taken up to Heaven) (1 Corinthians 15:5–8). Christ’s post-resurrection appearances verified His resurrection.
The Gospel (Good News) consists of historical events concerning the Lord Jesus Christ’s sacrificial death, burial, resurrection, and post-resurrection appearances (1 Corinthians 15:1–8).
Forty days after His resurrection (Acts 1:3), Christ was taken up to Heaven (Psalm 68:18aOTP; Acts 1:9–12), where He is now seated at the right hand of God the Father (Psalm 110:1OTP; Ephesians 1:20). Currently, the Lord Jesus intercedes for believers (Hebrews 7:25) and performs other ministries.
Is there any other way to be saved?
There is only one way to be saved. The Lord Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life[;] no [one] come[s] [to] the Father, but by Me” (John 14:6). Jesus Christ is the only way to the Father and therefore Heaven, where the Father resides. Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, told his audience, “[Nor] is there salvation in any other[;] for there is [no] other name under heaven given among men [by which] we must be saved” (Acts 4:12). Jesus Christ is the only Savior.
How can I be saved?
God requires you to repent and believe in the Lord Jesus Christ to be saved.
In the New Testament, “repent” generally means “to inwardly turn away from sin.”
Repent. When Paul summarized his message before King Agrippa, Governor Festus, and others, he stated that he proclaimed to all people “that they should repent and turn to God, and do works [worthy of] repentance” (Acts 26:20). You must obey the command to repent. Performing “works [worthy of] repentance” is the result of true repentance that occurs after you are saved. God does not require you to clean up your life before you can be saved (Titus 3:5). Peter said that God is “not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance” (2 Peter 3:9). God wants you to inwardly turn away from your sins instead of suffering eternal death.
In the New Testament, “believe” means “to be persuaded, to place confidence, to have faith, to trust” when used in a salvation context.
Believing in the Lord Jesus Christ includes trusting in His Person as the Christ (Messiah), the Son of God, Lord, and God and trusting in the Gospel of His sacrificial death, burial, resurrection, and post-resurrection appearances.
Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ as your Savior today. Paul and Silas, Paul’s coworker, told the Philippian jailor, “Believe [in] the Lord Jesus Christ, and [you will] be saved ...” (Acts 16:31–34). To be saved means to be delivered from the penalty for sin. John 3:16 is a key salvation verse: “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that [whoever] believe[s] in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” The term “only begotten Son” conveys the fact that the Lord Jesus is the only Son with the same eternal divine nature as God the Father. In this verse, God loved mankind (the world) and gave His only begotten Son through Christ’s becoming a man and sacrificially dying on the cross. Rather than justly receiving eternal death, God graciously gives you eternal life when you trust in the Lord Jesus Christ.
Did anything else happen at my salvation?
At salvation, God abundantly blessed you. God justified you (Romans 3:21–5:21); He legally declared you righteous. You “died to sin” (Romans 6:2); sin is no longer your master. You received forgiveness of your sins (Ephesians 1:7). You became a child of God (John 1:12). God gave you the permanent indwelling of the Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 6:19). God bestowed on you many other benefits when you were saved.
What should I do now that I am saved?
After salvation, you can do many things to live the Christian life.
You love God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ by obeying their commands (1 John 5:3; John 14:15). Specifically, you should obey their commands for Church Age believers (1 Corinthians 14:37) since you are no longer under the Law of Moses (Romans 7:4, 6). The Lord Jesus tells you to love fellow believers as He has loved you (John 13:34–35). Love others as you love yourself (Romans 13:9). You should be baptized to express your faith in Christ (Acts 16:31–34; 18:8). Attend a Bible-Believing Church (Hebrews 10:25). The Lord Jesus directs you to participate in the Lord’s Supper to remember His sacrificial death on the cross (1 Corinthians 11:23–26). God saved you to perform good works (Ephesians 2:10), and good works are evidence of genuine faith (James 2:26). You are to practice righteousness (1 John 3:10), show mercy (James 2:13) and exercise humility (James 4:10). Consider your relationship to sin as your master dead and your relationship to God as your Master alive through being united to Christ Jesus your Lord (Romans 6:11). The Lord Jesus tells you to preach repentance (Luke 24:47) and the Gospel (Mark 16:15) to unsaved people so they can be saved too.
An essential of Christian living is your dedication to God, which is carried out through your nonconformity to the world and transformation via your mind. Because God has shown you mercy, He urges you to “present your bod[y]” as a “sacrifice,” as one who is living, holy (separated from sin to God), and well-pleasing to Him (Romans 12:1). To “present your bod[y]” as a “sacrifice” means to dedicate yourself completely to God. The only reasonable way to serve God is through total commitment to Him (Romans 12:1). Do not be “conformed to this world” (Romans 12:2). In this verse, the world is the present evil age in which man’s lifestyle opposes God. The world can negatively influence your life. Instead, be “transformed by the renewing of your mind” (Romans 12:2). In other words, your life should be changed through adjusting your thinking to a Biblical Christian way of thinking. A renewed mind can test and approve what is God’s will (His plan for your life) (Romans 12:2). His will is what is good, well-pleasing, and perfect (Romans 12:2).
Expect to be persecuted as you live a life devoted to God in union with Christ Jesus (2 Timothy 3:12).
If you commit sins, you can confess your sins, and God will forgive your sins and spiritually wash you “from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9). Forgiveness of your sins allows you to maintain fellowship with God (1 John 1:5–10).
Studying the entire Bible is important. The Bible is “God-breathed” (2 Timothy 3:16). It is the only source for sound doctrine (correct teaching) (Matthew 22:23–33; Acts 17:1–4), which includes instructions for Christian living (e.g., 1 Corinthians 10:31; 1 John 2:15–17). The Bible is inerrant (without error) in all that it records (Psalm 119:160).
Prayer is also important. God commands you to pray to Him often (1 Thessalonians 5:17). The Lord Jesus frequently prayed as your example (e.g., Luke 5:16; 6:12, 9:18). God answers prayer (James 5:16b–18). You can vocally or silently pray by making requests, with thanksgiving (Philippians 4:6), to your Heavenly Father (Ephesians 3:14), who knows you and your thoughts (Psalm 139:1–6).
You can have assurance of your salvation (John 10:27–29).
As a Church Age believer, what will happen in my future?
At death, spirits of Church Age believers go to be with the Lord in Heaven (2 Corinthians 5:8; Philippians 3:20).
When the Rapture of the Church occurs, dead Church Age believers will be resurrected. Next, living Church Age believers will be “caught up together with them ... to meet the Lord in the air” (1 Thessalonians 4:13–17a). At the Rapture, believers’ dead or living earthly bodies will be instantly changed into eternal glorified bodies (1 Corinthians 15:51–54; Philippians 3:20–21). Thus, Church Age believers will always be with the Lord (1 Thessalonians 4:17b).
At the Judgment Seat of Christ, Church Age believers will have every work after salvation (Ephesians 2:10) judged and rewarded accordingly (2 Corinthians 5:10).
After the Tribulation Period (Revelation 4–19) and the Lord Jesus Christ’s Second Coming (Revelation 19:11–21), glorified believers of all eras, including Church Age believers, will reign with Christ in His Millennial (1000-Year) Kingdom on earth (Revelation 20:4–6).
Finally, all believers will be with God in the New Heaven and New Earth for eternity to fellowship with Him, serve Him, and reign with Him (Revelation 21–22).
- 1. Genesis 2:4–25 mainly gives more details about the sixth day of Creation.
- 2. John 8:24 and 58 relate to Exodus 3:13–15 in the Old Testament.
All Scripture quotations are from the King James Version. Pronouns referring to God are capitalized. Updated wording and other changes are in brackets, and comments are in parentheses within brackets. The original title of this Good News message was “‘Christ Died for the Ungodly’: From Creation to Christ.” Online Gospel tract written by Matt Hancock and updated on