Do you have to know God to be good?

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Do you have to believe that God exists to be a moral person? Can you live a life that models many of the characteristics Christ sought to instill in us without actually knowing Christ? As Kimberly Winston writes for the Religion News Service, for the first time a majority of Americans—56 percent—responded yes, including 45 percent of Christians. Are they right?

To answer that question requires a closer look at what’s really being asked.

To start, it’s important to note that there’s a fundamental difference between believing that God exists—the stipulation in the Pew Research study—and having a personal relationship with that God. Belief simply requires the recognition that some kind of ultimate being, though presumably a moral one, is out there and that he might judge us for wrong actions. Relationship, at least in a Christian context, means having experienced the love and grace of Christ and, from that experience, understanding the moral laws God set forth in light of his character and calling for our lives.

In short, it’s often the difference between seeing God as some otherworldly judge who exists primarily to keep people in line and as a loving Father who disciplines when necessary in order to guide us to the abundant life he longs for us to experience in him (John 10:10).

It only makes sense that a culture increasingly disinterested in a personal relationship with God would find that belief in his existence is unnecessary to live a good life. That group alone, however, is not the only group to have changed its mind. Those who profess to follow Christ, both evangelicals and non-evangelicals, have also moved away from the thought that belief in his existence is necessary for morality.

And, while the study was unclear as to their reasons for moving away, I imagine it often has something to do with knowing friends and family members who seem like genuinely good people, even though they aren’t Christians. I would guess that most…

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WHAT DO YOU THINK?

- We have all sinned and deserve God's judgment. God, the Father, sent His only Son to satisfy that judgment for those who believe in Him. Jesus, the creator and eternal Son of God, who lived a sinless life, loves us so much that He died for our sins, taking the punishment that we deserve, was buried, and rose from the dead according to the Bible. If you truly believe and trust this in your heart, receiving Jesus alone as your Savior, declaring, "Jesus is Lord," you will be saved from judgment and spend eternity with God in heaven.

What is your response?


If you are not a Christian, and would like to become a Christian. Simply say - "LORD Jesus, thank you for forgiving me of my SINs, today I am deciding to follow you. Accept me into your family, in Jesus name I pray. Amen "

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