Friday, April 20, 2007

What Is The Answer? Evangelism

In the Bible read 1 Corinthians chapter 5. What does God say we should do when someone is an unrepentant sinner?

"Then you must cast this man out of the church and into Satan's hands, so that his sinful nature will be destroyed and he himself will be saved when the Lord returns."

Unrepentant sinners are turned over to Satan! That is what God also does with unrepentant nations, turns them over to Satan by withdrawing His blessing. For example, we see this throughout the Book of Judges. Israel turns away from God, and God then withdraws from Israel. Without the full extent of God's blessing Israel suffers. Things get so bad they then realize what they have done and they turn back to God... resulting in God's blessing being on them again.

Could this be what is happening in America now? I think so. We've been steadily turning away from God. We been steadily embracing sin... even celebrating sin just as the Corinthian church was doing!! So how is God going to react? Since we as a nation are turning away from Him, He will let us experience what it is like to be without Him.

I read somewhere that America has more violent weather... more natural disasters than any other country. We survive them better than other countries because of our wealth (strong buildings, flood control dams, advance warning of severe weather, etc.), but we are still getting hit pretty hard. Some people have taken what they see happening as one sign that the end times are near. I can't say whether this is true or not because no one knows when Jesus will return. But it seems to me that what we are seeing is God withdrawing His blessing from America and America embracing this withdrawal by diving deeper into sin.

What can we do? We can be active politically. We can support organizations that oppose abortion and homosexual marriage. But I think that is only putting and band aid on the symptom. Yes, we should be doing these things, but the #1 priority in our lives needs to be sharing the Gospel. That is what will change America.

I can hear some non-Christians saying that what I am proposing is to sell people on Christianity so we can increase our numbers and take over the country. There is a fundamental flaw with that strategy. We can not "sell" someone on being a Christian. All we can do is to help people see their need for a Savior and give them the good news. Only God "makes" someone a Christian.

All we can do is help people see that they have lied, stolen and used God's name inappropriately (blasphemy), breaking God's law. (Those are just three of the 10 Commandments.) Because you have broken God's law you owe the penalty for breaking God's law... death. But the GOOD NEWS is that Jesus Christ has already paid that penalty for you. He has died to pay the penalty YOU owe for breaking God's law. It's a free gift... all you need to do is to accept that gift.

Christians, please, go out and share the Good News. There is no better way to love someone.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

The "gift" of salvation is not free.
If this gift truly required nothing as the claim says, then you wouldn't have to accept it to be saved.

It sounds wonderful doesn't it? Everybody loves free gifts. The problem is that the gift of salvation as taught in the Bible is anything but free. It first requires that you perform a work. That work is believing Jesus is your Savior and that only he can serve as your intermediary with God. Of course it also means that you accept all the baggage that goes along with that.
It means you accept as truth that this "God" will punish people for the "sin" of disbelief(Mark 16:16, John 3:18, John 3:36, Heb 3:12, 1 John 2:22), it requires that you worship a God who will provide infinite punishment for finite sins, and it requires that you accept a God with the behavior of a rather manipulative, power hungry, petty tyrant.

It means you must abandon your mind to save your soul. You must confess Jesus is your Lord and worship him as such. That act is a "work" in itself. Faith is also a work.

Make no mistake concerning the actual nature of this so-called "free" gift. Salvation is exchanged for worship and it's nothing more than a holy barter system where you say the magic words and you are saved. On the surface it's cheap, easy, and painless. It appeals to anyone who doesn't want to be burdened with thinking for themselves, but it's in no sense "free".

This form of holy fire insurance is nothing more than false advertising and should be treated with the same regard one would have when he opens a box of Cracker Jacks and digs out the cheap trinket that came as a "free" gift when you purchased the box it came in.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008 12:11:00 PM  
Blogger BrickBalloon said...

Yes, it is wonderful, because God's gift is truly a free gift given out of love.

There is nothing you can do before receiving God's gift of grace, and nothing you need to do afterward.

Without God's gift you are dead in your sins. Can a dead man do anything to save himself? Can he take the medicine that will cure him? No. He is dead and can do nothing. Nothing.

Yes, we need to accept God's gift of salvation, but it is only through His free gift that we are able to say yes. God gives us the ability to accept His gift. We don't do it on our own. He brings us, who are dead, back to life.

None of the verses you reference say we are punished for disbelief. We are punished for breaking God's laws... for being the bearers of God's image and misrepresenting His character. We are saved by trusting (believing) that Jesus Christ paid the penalty, we owe, on our behalf. The penalty is for disobeying God.

Imagine you have committed a crime and are standing before a judge in a courtroom. The judge says the fine is one million dollars or you go to prison. Someone then walks into the courtroom with the cash and offers to pay your fine for you, but you refuse and do not accept his gift. Are you punished for not accepting his gift? No, you are punished for your crime. It is the same with God. You are heading for hell, the fire filled pit, because you have disobeyed God, not because you have not believed that Jesus Christ died to pay the penalty for what you've done wrong.

God does not require worship. But I do not know of a Christian who does not want to worship God. Once you understand the magnitude of what God has done for you, you can not but help be grateful and want to praise, honor, love and worship God. People worship movie stars and America Idol winners who have not done anything for those people. It should not be very hard to understand people wanting to worship God, who has done so much more for us, saving us for eternity.

There is no requirement to confess Jesus as Lord and worship him, but anyone who is saved will want to do this. And you certainly do not have to abandon your mind... Christianity is the only rational belief system... it is the only belief system that is backed by historical facts instead of requiring blind faith. All religions require blind faith, including Islam, Budhism, Hinduisn and atheism. Christianity does not. (By the way, Christianity is not a religion.)

God is not asking you to worship Him. God is asking you to listen to your conscience. Ask your conscience if you have broken any of God's laws. Have you ever told a lie? Solen something? Used God's name as a cuss word (blasphemy)? Or not had God first in your life? Have you ever looked at another person with lust? Jesus says that to look with lust is the same as committing adultery in your mind... and God looks at your thoughts.

Ask your conscience. Are you heading to heaven or hell?

What can you do about it?

Tuesday, February 19, 2008 8:38:00 PM  

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