Why Do We Need Jesus?
(Excerpt from Alpha 'Why Easter?' booklet by Nicky Gumbel)
You and I were created to live in a relationship with God. Until we find that relationship there will always be something missing in our lives. As a result, we are often aware of a gap. One rock singer described it by saying: 'I've got an emptiness deep inside.'
A woman, in a letter to me, wrote of 'a deep, deep void'. Another young girl spoke of 'a chunk missing in her soul'. People try to fill this emptiness in various ways. Some try to close the gap with money, but that does not satisfy. Aristotle Onassis, who was one of the richest men in the world, said at the end of his life: "Millions do not always add up to what a man needs out of life'.
Others try drugs or excess alcohol or sexual promiscuity. One girl said to me, 'These things provide instant gratification but they leave you feeling hollow afterwards.' Still others try hard work, music, sport or seek success. There may not be anything wrong with these in themselves but they do not satisfy that hunger deep inside every human being.
Even the closest human relationships, wonderful though they are, do not in themselves satisfy this 'emptiness deep inside'. Nothing will fill this gap except the relationship with God for which we were made.
He satisfies our hunger for meaning and purpose in life - At some point everyone asks the question, 'What am I doing on earth?' or 'What is the point of life?' or 'Is there any purpose to life?'. As Albert Camus once said, 'Man cannot live without meaning'.
Until we are living in relationship with God we will never find the true meaning and purpose of life. Other things may provide passing satisfaction but it does not last. Only in a relationship with our Creator do we find the true meaning and purpose of our lives.
He satisfies our hunger for life beyond death - Before I was a Christian, I did not like to think about the subject of death. My own death seemed a long way in the future. I did not know what would happen and I did not want to think about it. I was failing to face up to reality. The fact is that we will all die. Yet God has 'set eternity in the human heart' (Ecclesiastes 3:11). Most people do not want to die. We long to survive beyond death. Only in Jesus Christ do we find eternal life. For our relationship with God, which starts now, survives death and goes on into eternity.
He satisfies our hunger for forgiveness - If we are honest, we would have to admit that we all do things that we know are wrong. Sometimes we do things of which we are deeply ashamed. More than that, there is a self-centredness about our lives which spoils them. Jesus said, 'What comes out of you is what makes you "unclean". For from within, out of your hearts, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, greed, malice, deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, arrogance and folly. All these evils come from inside and make you "unclean" (Mark 7:20-23).
Our greatest need, in fact, is for forgiveness. Just as someone who has cancer needs a doctor whether they realise it or not, so we need forgiveness whether we realise it or not. Just as with cancer, those who recognise their need are far better off than those who are lulled into false sense of security.
By His death on the cross Jesus made it possible for us to be forgiven and brought back into relationship with God. In this way He supplied the answer to our deepest need.
Want to read more? You can get a FREE pdf of our 'Why Easter?' booklet by clicking here.