God would have been perfectly just to leave matters there, but God instead set in motion His plan to save His people from sin and judgment and set free the entire creation from its subjugation to sin and the curse. How? By sending His Son as a true man who would bear the penalty for our sin and die in our place: “Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures”
(1 Cor. 15:3).
The best-known verse in the Bible summarizes the required response to this good news: “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16).
To “believe in” Jesus includes both a wholehearted trust in Him for forgiveness of sins and a decision to forsake one’s sin or to “repent”: All who truly “repent and believe” will be redeemed (Mark 1:15) and restored to a right relationship with God. To “believe in” Jesus also requires relating to, and putting trust in, Jesus as He truly is; not just a man in ancient history but also a living Savior today who knows our hearts and hears our prayers.