[We are] not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek. (Romans 1:16)

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Forgetting Those Things That Are Behind...

David Wyatt

In thinking about the issues that are being debated among us lately, a thought came to me due in large part to bro. Antonio's previous post. This may be totally irrelevant to the issue of Gospel invitations, but I believe there is a correlation to one's reception of eternal life in Christ and his backgound in the things of God. Here's what I mean. Let's say that we are witnessing to a person about his need of Christ and this person knows next to nothing about the things of God. This person is totally steeped in carnality and never thinks about God at all. Then he hears the truth about the Lord Jesus. Now, here is another person that has grown up around church all his life. This person has heard Bible preaching, or at least what passes for it all his life and has been in church since 9 months prior to his physical birth. But this person has also heard confusing accounts of what the Bible actually teaches. Now, you begin to tell this person about Christ and you give a clear Gospel message and then invite him to believe in Christ. I know the ultimate importance of the Holy Spirit's part in witnessing must be brought to bear on this, but apart from this consideration, do you believe that it may be actually easier for the 1st person to believe than the 2nd? As to the title of this post, do you also think that even if this 2nd person is, due to God's grace, able to forget the falsehoods he's been taught & believe in Christ alone for eternal life, might there be a tough time ahead for him with the baggage that he is likely to carry along from his past?

9 Comments:

  • The background of a person does play a part.

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at Sunday, July 29, 2007 1:06:00 AM  

  • Thoughtful, David,

    Your thoughts bring to mind why a person must understand the nature of the Savior. He saves!!

    Without knowing Who Christ is, What Christ is and Why He came into the world (not a prayer or checklist), the person who makes a decision for Christ will likely have no assurance of his salvation (if he has salvation at all). He will likely still be carrying the baggage of his past religious (or not) experiences.

    The old things of his past, whether "religious" or anti-religious are still part of his "old nature." The new nature must be taught, encouraged and fed God's Word.

    The Savior is One to be relied upon to give eternal life. Then the indwelling Holy Spirit is One to be relied upon to teach and guide in all things.

    It could be well said that for every new believer, "there will be tough times ahead" without knowing in Whom they have believed and not being persuaded. 2 Timothy 1:12b "....for I know Whom I have believed, and am persuaded that He is able to keep that which I have committed unto Him against that day."

    Therein is salvation, security and assurance in the Only Savior, Jesus.

    ExP(Jack)

    By Anonymous ExPreacherMan, at Sunday, July 29, 2007 11:43:00 AM  

  • Thanks bro. Matthew & bro. Jack. I brings this up because of the much baggage that I bring to the table. I know I am saved only because I have believed in the only Savior, Jesus Christ. My trust & reliance is completely in Him alone to save me. But there has been some tough times & I know there will be more from some of the evangelists & preachers I have heard in the past that have laid heavy burdens hard to be borne around the necks of those they teach. Thank you for your responses. May the Lord bless you & I appreciate this community very much.

    By Blogger David Wyatt, at Sunday, July 29, 2007 7:27:00 PM  

  • David, that is a very good point.

    Many times new believers who have had no religious background will grow very quickly simply because they accept the truth of God's Word at face value without conditions.

    We that have grown up in the church tend to qualify everything we do or excuse many of the commands just like the Pharisees who gave their money to God so they would not need to help their parents.

    We may believe the truth that salvation is in Christ alone and understand many of the doctrines, but our willinginess to obey has been affected by our double standard of living.

    That being said, obviously it would be better to have grown up with the truth of God's word that without it and be tossed about by the world's carnal philosophy.

    By Blogger Jim, at Monday, July 30, 2007 8:11:00 AM  

  • A little knowledge can be dangerous. Misconceptions can be hard to overcome. You are right. It is important for all of us to be teachable and learn afresh from God's Word. I pray that I don't hold dear some falsehood implanted in me from my Catholic upbringing!

    By Blogger Rose~, at Monday, July 30, 2007 8:16:00 AM  

  • Good post, David!

    By Blogger Rose~, at Monday, July 30, 2007 8:17:00 AM  

  • Great contributions, all.

    You know, I must also admit that I also play a part in this. My old nature is still as Jeremiah said, deceitful above all things and desperately wicked...who can know it? Thankfully the Lord Jesus has crucified that old nature positionally & one day it will be gone for good coompletely! Oh, how I long for that Day. God Bless you all.

    By Blogger David Wyatt, at Monday, July 30, 2007 8:38:00 AM  

  • I just want to thank you all for simply discussing these things in such a way that everyone can share their 2 cents.

    It's incredible to see how almost all of my time was taken up with video games (specifically, World of Warcraft) until I found this blog! Now I can't get away from reading! I've been doing my research on dispensationalism (because I don't know enough about it to claim one way or the other), as well as studying the history behind the Grace Movement (btw: wikipedia may have incorrect information on the Grace Movement. I read something that didn't sound right, but I'm honestly not knowledgable enough to say whether it was correct or not. Some of you may want to sift through the pages of information on Wikipedia just in case... anyway). Thought-prevoking articles such as these drives me to discover who I am, and I am highly appreciative of it.

    Also, I tend to write some stuff about FG on my blog every now and then, and I beg of you, if you happen to stumble across my blog, and you notice that I say something incorrect, please, for the love of pete, correct me. I like to give disclaimers when I'm talking about things I'm not too educated in, so I do give disclaimers stating I'm not a FG teacher and I have no FG education, but I'm sure you all have experienced how people will take your stuff (especially if uncorrected) and run with it.

    Anyway, again, thanks so much for this community! It takes my mind off of unimportant things and places my mind on the things above.

    By Blogger the jerk, at Monday, July 30, 2007 5:29:00 PM  

  • Thanks brother! Glad to have you among us.

    By Blogger David Wyatt, at Monday, July 30, 2007 5:43:00 PM  

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