Closer than ever to the end of this present evil age, we have an unusual window of opportunity to search out the hidden purpose of our existence, to find our way back to God.
In short, mankind desperately needs to be reconciled to God (Isaiah 59:1-14). It is our sins, our abandonment of God's laws, that stand in the way. Only when we repent of doing things contrary to God's instruction can we experience a true relationship with our Creator. We need to learn what He expects of us. We should not distance ourselves from the presence of God as did the Israelites at Mount Sinai.
What does He advise us to do? The answer is straightforward:
"Seek the Lord while He may be found, call upon Him while He is near. Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts; let him return to the Lord, and He will have mercy on him; and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon" (Isaiah 55:6-7).
The Bible refers to the advice given here as repentance–as turning from our ways of doing things, and the bitter fruit those ways bring, and surrendering to God to begin living according to His ways. God "now commands all men everywhere to repent" and forsake our self-induced ignorance (Acts 17:30). (To better understand what it means to repent, be sure to request your free copy of the booklet The Road to Eternal Life).
God wants to show us the way out of our hardships and miseries and grant us understanding of the awesome knowledge of His plan for us. "Call to Me, and I will answer you, and show you great and mighty things, which you do not know" (Jeremiah 33:3). He will reward those who seek Him with their whole heart.
In our information age we sadly lack the most vital information of all, the knowledge of God. He wants to reveal it to us, but we must be willing to accept it and do some digging ourselves.
In the final analysis, "he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him" (Hebrews 11:6).
God offers the help of His Church, the spiritual Body He describes as "the pillar and ground of the truth" (1 Timothy 3:15). He encourages us to "grow in the grace and knowledge" of the wonderful truths of the Bible (2 Peter 3:18). The members of the United Church of God, publishers of this mini study, are committed to fulfilling Christ’s admonition to carry the message of God’s truth to the world and teaching people His way of life (Matthew 24:14; 28:18-20). We welcome you to share in its work and to discover the truth in mankind’s age-old search for God.