Knowing, therefore, the terror of the Lord, we persuade men (2 Corinthians 5:11).
God’s word and His sovereign grace convert and reform sinners. The old tale is told of a South Sea Islander, who, as a reformed cannibal and a convert to Christ, proudly displayed his Bible to a G.I. during World War II. The soldier mockingly said, “We have outgrown that sort of thing in America.” The native smiled back and said, “It’s a good thing we haven’t. If it weren’t for this book, you would have been a meal by now.” The Bible is a book of transformation. It is the instrument that the Holy Spirit uses to save souls and reform sinners. The job of the Christian is not to astound and electrify people with human wisdom, but to preach God’s holy word to the lost.
I say to you that likewise, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine just persons who need no repentance (Luke 15:7).
When one shares the love of God without preaching God’s holiness and His law, it weakens the sinners’ sense of sin. Then the lost sinner is not interested in the grand truth of the cross and justification. The law and the gospel, these are the means God uses by His grace to save lost sinners though His Spirit. Drama’s, light shows, uplifting music may stir emotions and bring people to large and opulent church buildings, but they alone will not save a hell bound sinner.
The lost need to hear the bad news of the wrath of God, the judgment of righteousness, and the offer of God’s great grace in the person and work of Jesus Christ.
Our job is not to be cute or funny, but to love the lost with the truth. The unpleasant reality, the lost person’s position before a righteous God, is the reason that they must cast themselves upon the mercy of God in Christ. Entertainment in the right setting for the right reason can be very edifying and stimulating. But we must follow Paul and preach Christ: “to know nothing but Christ and Him crucified.” We are to placard Christ, the righteous King, whom all men have offended in every point of His holy law, and that same Christ the Savior dying for our transgressions, of that very same law.
Sartre claimed that he became an atheist because a man stared at him in public. He felt uncomfortable and dehumanized by becoming an object of the long stare of a stranger. He then reasoned: God is omnipresent; hence God must have His eyes perpetually on Sartre. But he did not like God gazing upon him. Consequently he denied God because of his quirky shyness.
By the law is the knowledge of sin (Romans 3:20).
God is everywhere present and looks upon everyone always. He sees all the iniquity of mankind, and we should remind people of that fact. Sinners hate this actuality. So we are to witness the truth to the lost and pray they turn to Christ in faith so they can avoid hell and rejoice with believers that God watches over His people in His omnipresence.
For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God unto salvation to everyone who believes (Romans 1:16).
Moreover, brethren, I declare to you the gospel… by which also you are saved… that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day (1 Corinthians 15:1-4).
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