Thursday, October 7, 2010

THE MESSAGE



This is an edited excerpt from a recent exchange of comments on FISH WITH TRISH, Trisha Ramos' blog. Click here to view the entire conversation.

Taxandrian: Hey, if you want to waste your time proclaiming your message to those who aren't susceptible to it [i.e. atheists]; be my guest.

Craig:  No one is "susceptible to it" unless and until they have been born again by a sovereign act of the Holy Spirit. Then they will irresistibly receive the Gospel and embrace Christ. (John 1:10-12; John 3:8; John 6:44)

Taxandrian: But are you prepared to deal with non-believers who 'stand their ground and won't back down'?

Craig: It won't be a matter of my dealing with them. The question is: are those who consistently reject Christ and the "offer of the Gospel," and stand fast in that rejection until their last breath, prepared to deal with eternity in hell. (John 3:18,19,36)

Taxandrian: Another question: if one follows all of God's commandments, does that guarantee a ticket to Heaven?

Craig: Jesus Christ obeyed all of God's commandments, and went to the cross where he endured the wrath of God against sinners, although he did no sin himself. That, plus his death, resurrection on the third day, and his ascension to God's "right hand" secured Heaven for everyone who trusts in him. (2 Corinthians 5:21; Philippians 2:8-9)

Jesus Christ now calls everyone, everywhere to confess his sin and trust in Him for his salvation and deliverance.

This is why I can, with utmost confidence, [deliver the message that calls] everyone, everywhere who will acknowledge his sin and bring his guilt and need to Jesus Christ, to do just that. And I can assure him, without any qualification, that in doing that he will most certainly be saved eternally "by the blood of Jesus Christ."

Azou: Man, feel free to be ineffective. We're just telling what methods are specifically not working on us.

Craig: Hey there, Azou. In the end, everyone enjoying eternal life in Heaven will have gotten there by one "method" and one only. That "method" is the Son of God's having lived a perfect life, and having suffered and died on the cross. My job is simple. I am just the messenger telling law breakers just like myself the Good News of what Christ has done for them, and how they can obtain the benefit of what Christ has done (Forgiveness of their sins, eternal life, and being adopted into God's family). The fact that some refuse to receive this is not due to any deficiency in the message or the method.
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Jesus said: "Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned." Mark 16:15-16)

"A man who hardens his neck after much reproof will suddenly be broken beyond remedy." (Prov. 29:1)
 
"So shall my word be that goes forth out of my mouth: it shall not return to me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it." (Isa. 55:11)
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Comments appearing in this post have been edited in order to capture the flow of the conversation, and to insert scripture references. Cartoon by Richard GuntherCB

2 comments:

Committed Christian said...

How bold! Way to go! It is great to hear about someone point people to Jesus Christ!

stranger.strange.land said...

Hi Committed Christian.

Did you go to Trish's blog for the whole conversation? (Actually, it was carried over to a more recent thread) Trish runs a very good blog. She is with Living Waters Ministries, and is a faithful street evangelist, herself.

I also have to admire the way some of the atheists who comment there really "hold the Christians' feet to the fire." These guys were relatively easy on me. ; )

Craig