The mission of James’ Mirror is to guide you to the best-of-the-best Christian resources including books, articles and sermons that will enhance your knowledge of God (doctrine) and encourage your obedience to Him (discipleship). The site is designed to give you ideas for how to grow in your faith no matter what discipleship stage you’re in – new Christian, growing Christian, or mature Christian.  There is also a page that points you to resources to improve how you parent and teach your family about God.  In addition, there are a set of pages to help you:

The Gospel
If you are not familiar with the good news of Christianity, read the outline below:

  • God is holy
    • He is perfect and righteous (Leviticus 11:4, Isaiah 6:3)
  • He demands perfection of us
    • The Law given to show us sin (Romans 7:7)
    • One sin = guilty of all (James 2:10)
    • The best of us are abomination before Him (Luke 16:15)
  • We are sinful beings and fall short of His demands
    • The standard Jesus lays out is higher than the ten commandments. He says anyone who looks at woman with lust has committed adultery or anyone angry with his brother is guilty of murder (Matthew 5)
    • All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23)
    • Our goodness like rags (Isaiah 64:6)
    • We are dead in our sins (Ephesians 2:1-5)
  • He will judge us
    • We will have to give an account to God (1 Peter 4:5, Romans 14:12)
    • Appointed a day of judgment (Acts 17:16-34, Hebrews 9:27)
  • Our sin requires justice/punishment
    • The wages of sin is death (Romans 6:23)
  • The bad news…We have a problem. What do we do???
    • We fail God’s criteria for entering heaven
  • The solution…God is loving. He sent His Son to fulfill the requirement of perfection
    • God so loved the world that He sent Jesus (John 3:16)
    • Jesus is God incarnate (Philippians 2)
    • Jesus lived the perfect life to fulfill God’s requirements (Matthew 5:17-18, Galatians 3:13)
    • Jesus rebuked misconceptions about Himself and affirmed those understood who He was (Matthew 16:15-17)
    • God, as a judge, is both just in the He pronounces a right verdict for our sin, and merciful in that He provides solution by offering Jesus to take the punishment, rather than leaving us helpless
  • Through Jesus death, He substituted Himself in our place and took the punishment for sin. His resurrection showed His power over death.
    • He made Jesus sin that we might be righteous in Him (2 Corinthians 5:21)
    • There is no forgiveness without the shedding of blood (Hebrews 9:22, Ephesians 1:7)
    • Christ died for us (Romans 5:8-9) and bore our sins (1 Peter 2:24)
  • We are to confess our sins and trust in Jesus alone to save us based on His completed and sufficient work
    • We need to recognize how much we fall short before God and repent of our sins. Once we turn away from our sins, we turn to God through faith and He forgives us (1 John 1:9)
    • We add nothing to God’s work, so that we can’t boast. All of the glory is owed to Jesus (Ephesians 2:8-9)
    • Trusting Jesus isn’t mere belief in His existence because even the demons believe in Him. It means reliance on His work to save you rather than your own (James 2:19)
    • Our wages should be death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus (Romans 6:23)
    • The magnitude or frequency of past sin doesn’t matter. Paul considered him the worst of sinners because he persecuted and killed the disciples (1 Timothy 1:15-16), yet he was saved
    • The key attribute of faith is its object (Jesus). You can walk out on the ice with little faith and it can hold you because it’s good ice or walk out with confidence and fall because it’s bad ice. The quality of the ice is what matters. The same is true with salvation who you trust is more important than how much you trust.
  • Jesus has specified that He’s the only way
    • He says that no one comes to the Father except through Him (John 14:6)
    • Not through Mohammad, Joseph Smith or Buddha. He says to enter through the narrow gate (Matthew 7:13)
  • The good news in summary…By God’s grace, He gives us what we don’t deserve, which is Christ’s righteousness
    • By grace were saved through faith as a gift (Ephesians 2:8-9)
    • Instead of looking upon our sin and fallenness, He looks upon Christ’s perfection at the judgment (Romans 8:1)
    • We have righteousness from God (Philippians 3:9)
    • We have peace with God (Romans 5:1-2)
  • The result…Good works are a result of faith/salvation, not a precursor
    • They are our response to His love and sacrifice (James 2)
    • Die to self daily to serve Him (Luke 9:22-24)

Gospel Implications

  • The nature of humanity matters. God doesn’t grade on a curve or weigh the good actions against bad on a cosmic scale. Our sin creates a great chasm between us and Him that we can never bridge on our own. We can’t work our way there…this leads to a dilemma.
  • The nature of Jesus matters. He asked His disciples who they thought He was and the answer mattered. He fulfilled God’s requirement for a perfect life laid out in the law, took the punishment we deserved for sin and returned to life in his resurrection. Only God could do this work (not a glorified man as the Mormons believe or an angel as the Jehovah’s Witnesses hold to). Jesus calls people trust and obey Him.
  • The nature of salvation matters. We bring nothing to the table, so we must depend upon Jesus as our Savior. It is God’s grace received through faith. It is not a matter of baptism or works because His work is sufficient and we add nothing to it.
  • This is ultimately a question of truth not preference or opinion. People can be sincere about their beliefs and be sincerely wrong. God gives us the answer through the Bible, so we don’t have to guess and make up religious schemes to reach Him. We don’t have the option of denying the parts of the Bible the we dislike; rather we must accept or reject the whole.
  • Time is short. James 4:14 describes our life like mist that’s here today and gone tomorrow. We must seek God now and not delay.

For additional information, visit Christianity Explored or read one of the first three books suggested on the new Christian page