Belonging to God: A First Catechism Questions 1-28

Belonging to God: A First Catechism*

 With Biblical References

* A Catechism is an exposition, or a summary, of doctrine, that is, a code of beliefs, traditionally used in Christian religious teaching from New Testament times to the present.

[approved by the 210th General Assembly (1998)]
[Biblical citations added for reference] 

Question 1. Who are you?

I am a child of God.

Gal. 4:6-7 "And because you are children, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, 'Abba! Father!' So you are no longer a slave but a child, and if a child then also an heir, through God."

1 John 3:1 "See what love the Father has given us, that we should be called children of God"

John 1:12 "But to all who received him, who believed in his name, he gave power to become children of God."

Rom. 8:15-17 "When we cry, 'Abba! Father!' it is that very Spirit bearing witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs."

Gal. 3:25-27 "But now that faith has come, we are no longer subject to a disciplinarian, for in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith. As many of you as were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ."

Question 2. What does it mean to be a child of God?

That I belong to God, who loves me.

Matt. 18:14 "So it is not the will of your Father in heaven that one of these little ones should be lost."

Matt. 19:14 "Let the little children come to me, and do not stop them; for it is to such as these that the kingdom of heaven belongs."

1 Cor. 3:23 "You belong to Christ, and Christ belongs to God."

2 Cor. 10:7 "If you are confident that you belong to Christ, remind yourself of this, that just as you belong to Christ, so also do we."

Gal. 3:28-29 "There is no longer Jew or Greek, there is no longer slave or free, there is no longer male and female; for all of you are one in Christ Jesus. And if you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham's offspring, heirs according to the promise."

Question 3. What makes you a child of God?

Grace -- God's free gift of love that I do not deserve and cannot earn.

Eph. 2:8-10 "For by grace you have been saved through faith, and this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God--not the result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are what he has made us, created in Christ Jesus for good works."

Gal. 4:4-5 "But when the fullness of time had come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under the law, in order to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as children."

Heb. 4:16 "Let us therefore approach the throne of grace with boldness, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need."

Eph. 1:7-9 "In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace that he lavished on us. With all wisdom and insight he has made known to us the mystery of his will, according to his good pleasure that he set forth in Christ."

1 Cor. 4:7 "What do you have that you did not receive? And if you received it, why do you boast as if it were not a gift?"

Question 4. Don't you have to be good for God to love you?

No. God loves me in spite of all I do wrong.

John 8:10-11 "Jesus straightened up and said to her, 'Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?' She said, 'No one, sir.' And Jesus said, 'Neither do I condemn you. Go your way, and from now on do not sin again.'"

Luke 15:21-24 "Then the son said to him, 'Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you; I am no longer worthy to be called your son.' But the father said to his slaves, 'Quickly, bring out a robe--the best one--and put it on him; put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. And get the fatted calf and kill it, and let us eat and celebrate; for this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found!' And they began to celebrate."

Rom. 5:8 "But God proves his love for us in that while we still were sinners Christ died for us."

1 John 4:10 "In this is love, not that we loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the atoning sacrifice for our sins."

Question 5. How do you thank God for this gift of love?

I promise to love and trust God with all my heart.

Matt. 22:37 "He said to him, 'You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.'"

Deut. 6:4-6 "Hear, O Israel: The Lord is our God, the Lord alone. You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your might. Keep these words that I am commanding you today in your heart."

Ps. 9:1 "I will give thanks to the Lord with my whole heart; I will tell of all your wonderful deeds."

Jer. 24:7 "I will give them a heart to know that I am the Lord; and they shall be my people and I will be their God, for they shall return to me with their whole heart."

Question 6. How do you love God?

By worshipping God, by loving others, and by respecting what God has created.

John 4:24 "God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth."

Deut. 10:20 "You shall fear the Lord your God; him alone you shall worship; to him you shall hold fast, and by his name you shall swear."

Ps. 95:6 "O come, let us worship and bow down, let us kneel before the Lord, our Maker!"

Luke 10:36-37 "'Which of these three, do you think, was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of the robbers?' He said, 'The one who showed him mercy.' Jesus said to him, 'Go and do likewise.'"

Matt. 25:40 "Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family, you did it to me."

1 John 4:19-21 "We love because he first loved us. Those who say, 'I love God,' and hate their brothers or sisters, are liars; for those who do not love a brother or sister whom they have seen, cannot love God whom they have not seen. The commandment we have from him is this: those who love God must love their brothers and sisters also."

Gen. 1:28 "God blessed them, and God said to them, 'Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth and subdue it; and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the air and over every living thing that moves upon the earth.'"

Gen. 2:15 "The Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to till it and keep it."

Prov. 14:31 "Those who oppress the poor insult their Maker, but those who are kind to the needy honor him."

Question 7. What did God create?

God created all that is, seen and unseen.

Gen. 1:1, 31 "In the beginning when God created the heavens and the earthGod saw everything that he had made, and indeed, it was very good."

Acts 4:24 "When they heard it, they raised their voices together to God and said, 'Sovereign Lord, who made the heaven and the earth, the sea, and everything in them.'"

Ps. 8:3-4 "When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars that you have established; what are human beings that you are mindful of them, mortals that you care for them?"

Ps. 19:1 "The heavens are telling the glory of God; and the firmament proclaims his handiwork."

Question 8. What is special about human beings?

God made us, male and female, in the image of God.

Gen. 1:26-27 "Then God said, 'Let us make humankind in our image, according to our likeness; and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the wild animals of the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps upon the earth.' So God created humankind in his image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them."

Col. 1:15 "He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation."

2 Cor. 4:4 "In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God."

Question 9. What does it mean that we are made in God's image?

It means we are made to reflect God's goodness, wisdom and love.

Matt. 5:14-16 "You are the light of the world. A city built on a hill cannot be hid. No one after lighting a lamp puts it under the bushel basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father in heaven."

2 Cor. 4:5-6 "For we do not proclaim ourselves; we proclaim Jesus Christ as Lord and ourselves as your slaves for Jesus' sake. For it is the God who said, 'Let light shine out of darkness,' who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ."

Question 10. Why, then, do we human beings often act in destructive and hateful ways?

Because we have turned away from God and fallen into sin.

Gen. 3:8 "They heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden at the time of the evening breeze, and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden."

Gen. 4:8 "Cain rose up against his brother Abel, and killed him."

Rom. 1:18 "For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and wickedness of those who by their wickedness suppress the truth."

Rom. 7:19-20 "For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I do. Now if I do what I do not want, it is no longer I that do it, but sin that dwells within me."

Is. 53:6 "All we like sheep have gone astray; we have all turned to our own way."

Question 11. What is sin?

Sin is closing our hearts to God and disobeying God's law.

Gen. 3:23-24 "Therefore the Lord God sent him forth from the garden of Eden, to till the ground from which he was taken. He drove out the man; and at the east of the garden of Eden he placed the cherubim, and a sword flaming and turning to guard the way to the tree of life."

Matt. 15:19 "For out of the heart come evil intentions, murder, adultery, fornication, theft, false witness, slander."

1 John 3:4 "Everyone who commits sin is guilty of lawlessness; sin is lawlessness."

Gal. 3:10 "For all who rely on the works of the law are under a curse; for it is written, 'Cursed is everyone who does not observe and obey all the things written in the book of the law.'"

Rom. 1:22-25 "Claiming to be wise, they became fools; and they exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling a mortal human being or birds or four-footed animals or reptiles. Therefore God gave them up in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, to the degrading of their bodies among themselves, because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshipped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever!"

Is. 59:1-2 "See, the Lord's hand is not too short to save, nor his ear too dull to hear. Rather, your iniquities have been barriers between you and your God, and your sins have hidden his face from you so that he does not hear."

Question 12. What are the results of sin?

Our relationship with God is broken. All our relations with others are confused.

Rom. 6:23 "For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord."

Gen. 3:16,17-19 "I will greatly increase your pangs in childbearing; in pain you shall bring forth children, yet your desire shall be for your husband, and he shall rule over youcursed is the ground because of you; in toil you shall eat of it all the days of your life; thorns and thistles it shall bring forth for you; and you shall eat the plants of the field. By the sweat of your face you shall eat bread until you return to the ground, for out of it you were taken."

Eph. 2:1-3 "You were dead through the trespasses and sins in which you once lived, following the course of this world, following the ruler of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work among those who are disobedient. All of us once lived among them in the passions of our flesh, following the desires of flesh and senses, and we were by nature children of wrath, like everyone else."

1 Kings 18:18 "I have not troubled Israel; but you have, and your father's house, because you have forsaken the commandments of the Lord and followed the Baals."

Question 13. How does God deal with us as sinners?

God hates our sin, but never stops loving us.

Luke 19:5-7 "When Jesus came to the place, he looked up and said to him, 'Zacchaeus, hurry and come down; for I must stay at your house today.' So he hurried down and was happy to welcome him. All who saw it began to grumble and said, 'He has gone to be the guest of one who is a sinner.'"

2 Cor. 5:17-21 "So if anyone is in Christ, there is a new creation: everything old has passed away; see, everything has become new! All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation; that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting the message of reconciliation to us. . . . For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God."

Ps. 103:2-5 "Bless the Lord, O my soul, and do not forget all his benefits--ho forgives all your iniquity, who heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the Pit, who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy, who satisfies you with good as long as you live so that your youth is renewed like the eagle's."

Ps. 107:10-16 "Some sat in darkness and in gloom, prisoners in misery and in irons, for they had rebelled against the words of God, and spurned the counsel of the Most High. Their hearts were bowed down with hard labor; they fell down, with no one to help. Then they cried to the Lord in their trouble, and he saved them from their distress; he brought them out of darkness and gloom, and broke their bonds asunder. Let them thank the Lord for his steadfast love, for his wonderful works to humankind. For he shatters the doors of bronze, and cuts in two the bars of iron."

Question 14. What did God do to help us?

God chose the people of Israel to make a new beginning. They received God's covenant, and prepared the way for Jesus to come as our Savior.

Gen. 12:1-3 "Now the Lord said to Abram, 'Go from your country and your kindred and your father's house to the land that I will show you. I will make of you a great nation, and I will bless you, and make your name great, so that you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and the one who curses you I will curse; and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.'"

Ex. 15:13 "In your steadfast love you led the people whom you redeemed; you guided them by your strength to your holy abode."

Is. 11:1-2, 3 "A shoot shall come out from the stump of Jesse, and a branch shall grow out of his roots. The spirit of the Lord shall rest on himHis delight shall be in the fear of the Lord."

Jer. 31:31 "The days are surely coming, says the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and the house of Judah."

Rom. 9:4-5 "They are Israelites, and to them belong the adoption, the glory, the covenants, the giving of the law, the worship, and the promises; to them belong the patriarchs, and from them, according to the flesh, comes the Messiah, who is over all, God blessed forever. Amen."

Question 15. What is the covenant?

The covenant is an everlasting agreement between God and Israel.

Gen. 9:12-13 "This is the sign of the covenant that I make between me and you and every living creature that is with you, for all future generations: I have set my bow in the clouds, and it shall be a sign of the covenant between me and the earth."

Rom. 11:29 "For the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable."

Gen. 15:18 "On that day the Lord made a covenant with Abram, saying, 'To your descendants I give this land.'"

Gen. 17:4 "As for me, this is my covenant with you: You shall be the ancestor of a multitude of nations."

Ps. 89:3-4 "You said, 'I have made a covenant with my chosen one, I have sworn to my servant David: I will establish your descendants forever, and build your throne for all generations.'"

Heb. 8:10 "This is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the Lord: I will put my laws in their minds, and write them on their hearts, and I will be their God, and they shall be my people."

Question 16. What is in this agreement?

When God called Abraham and Sarah, God promised to bless their family, which was later called Israel. Through the people of Israel, God vowed to bless all the peoples of the earth. God promised to be Israel's God, and they promised to be God's people. God vowed to love Israel and to be their hope forever, and Israel vowed to worship and serve only God.

Gen. 12:1-3 "Now the Lord said to Abram, 'Go from your country and your kindred and your father's house to the land that I will show you. I will make of you a great nation, and I will bless you, and make your name great, so that you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and the one who curses you I will curse; and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.'"

Gen. 17:1-7 "When Abram was ninety-nine years old, the Lord appeared to Abram, and said to him, 'I am God Almighty; walk before me, and be blameless. And I will make my covenant between me and you, and will make you exceedingly numerous.' Then Abram fell on his face; and God said to him, 'As for me, this is my covenant with you: You shall be the ancestor of a multitude of nations. No longer shall your name be Abram, but your name shall be Abraham; for I have made you the ancestor of a multitude of nations. I will make you exceedingly fruitful; and I will make nations of you, and kings shall come from you. I will establish my covenant between me and you, and your offspring after you throughout their generations, for an everlasting covenant, to be God to you and to your offspring after you."

Ex. 6:6-7 "I am the Lord, and I will free you from the burdens of the Egyptians and deliver you from slavery to them. I will redeem you with an outstretched arm and with mighty acts of judgment. I will take you as my people, and I will be your God."

Ex. 24:3 "Moses came and told the people all the words of the Lord and all the ordinances; and all the people answered with one voice, and said, 'All the words that the Lord has spoken we will do.'"

Jer. 7:23 "But this command I gave them, 'Obey my voice, and I will be your God, and you shall be my people; and walk only in the way that I command you, so that it may be well with you.'"

Gal. 3:14 "In Christ Jesus the blessing of Abraham might come to the Gentiles, so that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith."

1 Pet. 2:9-10 "But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God's own people, in order that you may proclaim the mighty acts of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. Once you were not a people, but now you are God's people; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy."

Question 17. How did God keep this covenant?

God led Israel out of slavery in Egypt, gave them the Ten Commandments through Moses, and brought them into the land that God had promised.

Ex. 15:13 "In your steadfast love you led the people whom you redeemed; you guided them by your strength to your holy abode."

Josh. 1:1-3 "After the death of Moses the servant of the Lord, the Lord spoke to Joshua son of Nun, Moses' assistant, saying, 'My servant Moses is dead. Now proceed to cross the Jordan, you and all this people, into the land that I am giving to them, to the Israelites. Every place that the sole of your foot will tread upon I have given to you, as I promised to Moses."

Heb. 11:29-31 "By faith the people passed through the Red Sea as if it were dry land, but when the Egyptians attempted to do so they were drowned. By faith the walls of Jericho fell after they had been encircled for seven days."

Question 18. What are the Ten Commandments?

The Ten Commandments are the law of God. When God gave them to Moses, God said, I am the Lord your God who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery:

(1) You shall have no other gods before me.
(2) You shall not make for yourself an idol.
(3) You shall not make wrongful use of the name of the Lord your God.
(4) Remember the Sabbath day and keep it holy.
(5) Honor your father and your mother.
(6) You shall not murder.
(7) You shall not commit adultery.
(8) You shall not steal.
(9) You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
(10) You shall not covet what is your neighbor's.

Ex. 20:1-17 "Then God spoke all these words: I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery; you shall have no other gods before me. You shall not make for yourself an idol, whether in the form of anything that is in heaven above, or that is on the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I the Lord your God am a jealous God, punishing children for the iniquity of parents, to the third and the fourth generation of those who reject me, but showing steadfast love to the thousandth generation of those who love me and keep my commandments. You shall not make wrongful use of the name of the Lord your God, for the Lord will not acquit anyone who misuses his name. Remember the sabbath day, and keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work. But the seventh day is a sabbath to the Lord your God; you shall not do any work--you, your son or your daughter, your male or female slave, your livestock, or the alien resident in your towns. For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but rested the seventh day; therefore the Lord blessed the sabbath day and consecrated it. Honor your father and your mother, so that your days may be long in the land that the Lord your God is giving you. You shall not murder. You shall not commit adultery. You shall not steal. You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor. You shall not covet your neighbor's house; you shall not covet your neighbor's wife, or male or female slave, or ox, or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor."

Question 19. What is the main point of these commandments?

You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, mind and strength; and you shall love your neighbor as yourself.

Mark 12:29-31 "Jesus answered, 'The first is, 'Hear, O Israel: the Lord our God, the Lord is one; you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength.' The second is this, 'You shall love your neighbor as yourself.'"

Deut. 6:4-5 "Hear, O Israel: The Lord is our God, the Lord alone. You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your might."

John 15:12 "This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you."

Question 20. Did the people keep their covenant with God?

Though some remained faithful, the people too often to worshiped other gods and did not love each other as God commanded. They showed us how much we all disobey God's law.

Ex. 32:1 "When the people saw that Moses delayed to come down from the mountain, the people gathered around Aaron, and said to him, 'Come, make gods for us, who shall go before us; as for this Moses, the man who brought us up out of the land of Egypt, we do not know what has become of him.'"

1 John 5:21 "Little children, keep yourselves from idols."

Deut. 29:25-27 "They will conclude, 'It is because they abandoned the covenant of the Lord, the God of their ancestors, which he made with them when he brought them out of the land of Egypt. They turned and served other gods, worshipping them, gods whom they had not known and whom he had not allotted to them; so the anger of the Lord was kindled against that land, bringing on it every curse written in this book.'"

Question 21. What did God do to bring them back to the covenant?

Although God judged the people when they sinned, God still loved them and remained faithful to them. God sent them prophets to speak God's word. God gave them priests to make sacrifices for their sins. God called kings to protect the needy and guarantee justice. At last God promised to send the Messiah.

1 Sam. 3:19-20 "As Samuel grew up, the Lord was with him and let none of his words fall to the ground. And all Israel from Dan to Beer-sheba knew that Samuel was a trustworthy prophet of the Lord."

Ex. 28:1 "Then bring near to you your brother Aaron, and his sons with him, from among the Israelites, to serve me as priests."

1 Sam. 16:13 "Then Samuel took the horn of oil, and anointed him in the presence of his brothers; and the spirit of the Lord came mightily upon David from that day forward."

Jer. 23:5 "The days are surely coming, says the Lord, when I will raise up for David a righteous Branch, and he shall reign as king and deal wisely, and shall execute justice and righteousness in the land."

Is. 9:1-6 "For a child has been born for us, a son given to us; authority rests upon his shoulders; and he is named Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace."

Acts 3:18,22 "In this way God fulfilled what he had foretold through all the prophets, that his Messiah would suffer Moses said, 'The Lord your God will raise up for you from your own people a prophet like me."

Heb. 4:14-16 "Since, then, we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus, the Son of God, let us hold fast to our confession. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who in every respect has been tested as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore approach the throne of grace with boldness, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need."

John 18:33-37 "Then Pilate entered the headquarters again, summoned Jesus, and asked him, 'Are you the King of the Jews?' Jesus answered, 'Do you ask this on your own, or did others tell you about me?' Pilate replied, 'I am not a Jew, am I? Your own nation and the chief priests have handed you over to me. What have you done?' Jesus answered, 'My kingdom is not from this world. If my kingdom were from this world, my followers would be fighting to keep me from being handed over to the Jews. But as it is, my kingdom is not from here.' Pilate asked him, 'So you are a king?' Jesus answered, 'You say that I am a king. For this I was born, and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to my voice.'"

Question 22. Who was sent to be the Messiah?

God sent Jesus to be the Messiah. Messiah means "anointed one." The New Testament word for Messiah is Christ. Jesus is called the Christ, because God anointed him to be the Savior who would rescue us from sin and death.

Luke 2:26-38 "It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death before he had seen the Lord's Messiah."

Luke 3:22 "The Holy Spirit descended upon him in bodily form like a dove. And a voice came from heaven, 'You are my Son, the Beloved; with you I am well pleased.'"

Luke 2:10-11 "Do not be afraid; for see--I am bringing you good news of great joy for all the people: to you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is the Messiah, the Lord."

Phil. 3:20 "But our citizenship is in heaven, and it is from there that we are expecting a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ."

Luke 4:18 "The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to bring good news to the poor."

Question 23. How did God keep the promise to Abraham by sending Jesus?

By sending Jesus, God opened up the covenant with Abraham to the whole world. God welcomed all who have faith in Jesus into the blessings of the covenant.

Gal. 3:6-7 "Just as Abraham 'believed God, and it was reckoned to him as righteousness,' so, you see, those who believe are the descendants of Abraham."

John 8:56 "Your ancestor Abraham rejoiced that he would see my day; he saw it and was glad."

Matt. 1:1 "An account of the genealogy of Jesus the Messiah, the son of David, the son of Abraham."

Question 24. Was Jesus just another human being?

No. Although he was truly human, he was also God with us. As someone who was truly human, he could share all our sorrows. Yet because he was truly God, he could save us from all our sins.

Matt. 1:22-23 "All this took place to fulfill what had been spoken by the Lord through the prophet: 'Look, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall name him Emmanuel,' which means, 'God is with us.'"

John 1:1, 14 "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God And the Word became flesh and lived among us."

Matt. 26:38-39 "Then he said to them, 'I am deeply grieved, even to death; remain here, and stay awake with me.' And going a little farther, he threw himself on the ground and prayed, 'My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from me; yet not what I want but what you want.'"

John 14:11 "Believe me that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; but if you do not, then believe me because of the works themselves."

Col. 1:15,19-20 "He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, and through him God was pleased to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, by making peace through the blood of his cross."

Question 25. What was Jesus like?

When Jesus spoke, he spoke with God's authority. When he acted, he acted with God's power. The people were amazed. He was also gentle and loving. He cared for us in all our needs as a shepherd cares for the sheep.

Mark 1:27 "They were all amazed, and they kept on asking one another, 'What is this? A new teaching--with authority! He commands even the unclean spirits, and they obey him.'"

Mark 4:41 "And they were filled with great awe and said to one another, 'Who then is this, that even the wind and the sea obey him?'"

Luke 15:6 "And when he comes home, he calls together his friends and neighbors, saying to them, 'Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep that was lost.'"

Matt. 11:28-30 "Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me; for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light."

Question 26. What did he do during his life on earth?

He called disciples to follow him. He fed the hungry, healed the sick, blessed children, befriended outcasts, required people to repent, and forgave their sins. He taught people not to fear, but to trust always in God. He preached the good news of God's love and gave everyone hope for new life.

Luke 5:9-11 "For he and all who were with him were amazed at the catch of fish that they had taken; and so also were James and John, sons of Zebedee, who were partners with Simon. Then Jesus said to Simon, 'Do not be afraid; from now on you will be catching people.' When they had brought their boats to shore, they left everything and followed him."

Mark 6:41-42 "Taking the five loaves and the two fish, he looked up to heaven, and blessed and broke the loaves, and gave them to his disciples to set before the people; and he divided the two fish among them all. And all ate and were filled."

Luke 5:13 "Then Jesus stretched out his hand, touched him, and said, 'I do choose. Be made clean.' Immediately the leprosy left him."

Luke 5:20 "When he saw their faith, he said, 'Friend, your sins are forgiven you.'"

John 14:6 "Jesus said to him, 'I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.'"

Matt. 6:25-34 "Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air; they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?"

Question 27. How did Jesus Christ prove to be our Savior?

He sacrificed his life for us by dying on the cross. He showed his victory over death by rising from the dead. He removed our guilt and gave us new, unending life with God.

2 Cor. 5:19 "In Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting the message of reconciliation to us."

Is. 53:5 "But he was wounded for our transgressions, crushed for our iniquities; upon him was the punishment that made us whole, and by his bruises we are healed."

Rom. 4:24-25 "It will be reckoned to us who believe in him who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead, who was handed over to death for our trespasses and was raised for our justification."

Question 28. How do we know that Jesus is Lord?

After he died and was raised from the dead, he appeared to his disciples, both women and men. He revealed himself to them as our living Lord and Savior. Through the Bible, he continues to reveal himself to us today.

John 21:12-14 "Jesus said to them, 'Come and have breakfast.' Now none of the disciples dared to ask him, "Who are you?' because they knew it was the Lord. Jesus came and took the bread and gave it to them, and did the same with the fish. This was now the third time that Jesus appeared to the disciples after he was raised from the dead."

Luke 24:38-39 "He said to them, 'Why are you frightened, and why do doubts arise in your hearts? Look at my hands and my feet; see that it is I myself. Touch me and see; for a ghost does not have flesh and bones as you see that I have.'"

1 Cor. 15:3-4 "For I handed on to you as of first importance what I in turn had received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the scriptures, and that he was buried, and that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the scriptures."

John 20:15-18 "Jesus said to her, 'Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you looking for?' Supposing him to be the gardener, she said to him, 'Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have laid him, and I will take him away.' Jesus said to her, 'Mary!' She turned and said to him in Hebrew, 'Rabbouni!' (which means Teacher). Jesus said to her, 'Do not hold on to me, because I have not yet ascended to the Father. But go to my brothers and say to them, 'I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.'' Mary Magdalene went and announced to the disciples, 'I have seen the Lord'; and she told them that he had said these things to her."

Luke 24:44-49 "Then he said to them, 'These are my words that I spoke to you while I was still with you--that everything written about me in the law of Moses, the prophets, and the psalms must be fulfilled.' Then he opened their minds to understand the scriptures, and he said to them, 'Thus it is written, that the Messiah is to suffer and to rise from the dead on the third day, and that repentance and forgiveness of sins is to be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things. And see, I am sending upon you what my Father promised; so stay here in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high.'"

1 Cor. 15:5-7,11 "He appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. Then he appeared to more than five hundred brothers and sisters at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have died. Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles. Last of all, as to one untimely born, he appeared also to meWhether then it was I or they, so we proclaim and so you have come to believe."