Thursday, September 17, 2009
Some of us are intentional about starting relationships with others so that eventually we can share Christ with them. The trouble with that is that the deeper the friendship gets, the less likely we are to share our faith for fear of losing that friendship when we get around to sharing.
Yet Jesus said to Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation (Mark 16:15). He called us to preach the Word, to be prepared in season and out of season (2 Timothy 4:2), and to always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. (1 Peter 3:15)
This is something that none of us can ignore. The message of the cross is offensive and we WILL face persecution, but it will be nothing compared to what those without Christ will suffer for all eternity. Consider this...
FOR US - the worst thing that can happen is that we could be spit upon, or told to, 'Get Lost', or even tortured or murdered. JESUS said, "Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you." Matthew 5:11
FOR THEM - The worst thing that WILL happen to those without Christ will be a conscious eternity in Hell:
"Everlasting punishment" (Mathew 25:46)
"Weeping and gnashing of teeth" (Matthew 24:51)
"Fire unquenchable" (Luke 3:17)
"Indignation and wrath, tribulation and anguish" (Romans 2:8,9)
"Everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord" (2 Thessalonians 1:9)
"Eternal fire...the blackness of darkness for ever" (Jude 7,13)
How can I be silent knowing what I know about the reality of Hell? Yes, people may ask me questions I can't answer - that's okay, I can admit that I don't have all the answers, but for me, the most important thing is to try and keep them on track. I want to get them back to their conscience; the part of every person where there is conviction of sin. I hope that through the conviction of the Holy Spirit, they will see that if they die in their sin and stand before a Holy God they will get Justice from a God who is good and who cannot turn a blind eye to the fact that they are lawbreakers. His Holiness and Righteousness demand that He must punish all sin and that place of punishment is Hell. If they fear going to Hell (and many do) then I will share the Gospel with them, rather than cast the pearls of God's salvation before a proud person who continuously tries to justify their own goodness. For those who hear the Good News, most are thankful to God and even amazed by His love that He would punish His Son instead of the ones who really deserved it.
After sharing, my prayer is that now that the seeds have been planted, God will grant that person repentance and faith. My prayer is that those who've heard the Gospel will understand that they are not the ones who must accept Christ, but that He must accept them...and the only way He will do that is if they turn from their sins and put their trust in Jesus Christ who has paid their debt in full upon the cross......a debt that none of us could pay ourselves.
So, I would encourage you to study and practice and be ready to share your faith. I believe that God is calling His Church to be ever more diligent in these last days to share the truth of the Gospel with a lost and dying world. The time is short and Satan is well aware of that. The road to destruction is gaping open and many are running headlong down it's deadly path, but there is only ONE narrow road that will lead to life and only a few find it.
"How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? 15And how can they preach unless they are sent? As it is written, "How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!"
Posted by Giselle at 10:16 AM