God makes us his friends
1-2 So we believe in Jesus now and God says we are all right, and he will not punish us. God is really good to us. Jesus Christ, our leader, did all this for us. Now we can be happy and think about how good it will be for us later, when we will be with him. We will be really great with him at that time. We can be happy now, too, even if things go wrong for us and we get trouble. We know that God lets us get trouble to make us strong, so that we will always be able to handle problems, and never stop believing. And after we learn to keep on believing, then we will become better people. And after we become better people, we can think about the time that will come, the time when everything will be good for us. And the Holy Spirit is in us, so we know that God loves us. Yes, God gave us his Holy Spirit and now his spirit in us makes us really love everybody.
Jesus Christ died for us while we were still really weak. At that time we didn’t care about God at all. But he came, just at the right time, and he died instead of us. You know, people don’t usually agree to die instead of somebody else, not even for a good person. (Maybe there is somebody that will risk their life for a really good person.) But Jesus Christ died for us while we were still really bad people. This shows that God really loves us very much.
And that’s not all. Jesus Christ bled and died for us, so now God tells us, “You are all right,” and there is no way that he will get angry with us or punish us. 10 It is like this. We were God’s enemies, then his son Jesus died for us, so now we are God’s friends. And that’s not all. Now that we are God’s friends Jesus lives in us and saves us. 11 So we are really happy now, because Jesus has saved us and made us good friends with God.
Christ is different from Adam
12 Think about the story about Adam. God told him, “If you eat any fruit from that tree you will die.” He did wrong, he ate that fruit, so he died. And that is the way it is with all of us people now. We all came from Adam, we all do wrong, and so we all die. 13-14 All the people that came from Adam did wrong in one way or another, so they all died at some time. This was the way it was before Moses came and wrote down the Law, everybody died. And it is just the same now after the law came, everybody still has to die. Before the law came, if somebody did wrong, nobody could point to a law to show that it was wrong. But they all died, so we know they all did wrong, even though they didn’t do it the same way as Adam did.
15 Jesus Christ came later, and he did something a lot different from the wrong thing Adam did. That one man, Adam, he went wrong, so many people have to die. But this other man, Jesus Christ, he is different. He makes many people alive. God gives us this life. He is very good to us even though we are not good enough for him. Jesus did much more for us than Adam did.
16 And we get something from Adam that is a lot different from the good thing that God gives us. Adam did just one bad thing, and from that now we all go wrong, so God has to punish us. But what God did is different. He is good to us and gives us life. It doesn’t cost us anything. So he will not punish us but he will call us his friends. 17 We know about that one man, Adam. He did something bad, so now lots of people die. But we also know about that other man, Jesus Christ. He did something good, so now lots of people will live properly, for ever. God is really good to them now, and he makes them good too. Jesus did a much better thing than Adam did. 18 After Adam went wrong everybody did bad things so God has to punish everybody. But then Jesus did something really good, and so now God will not punish us but will let us be his friends and live for ever. 19 That one man Adam did wrong. He did something God told him not to do, and from that now many people do wrong things. But that other man, Jesus, did something good. He did everything God told him to do, and from that he now makes many people good.
20 The law came and showed people that they did wrong. But this didn’t stop them, they still did wrong. Yes, people keep on doing more bad things, but at time same time God keeps on being more good to people. 21 It is like this. We can’t stop ourselves doing bad things, so we all have to die. But our leader, Jesus Christ, did something really good for us, so now God is good to us too. And he also makes us good, so we will live for ever.