Filed under Culture, Gospel
What a powerful question: Do you want Christ?
1. What if jossling the assurance of those not “truly”saved, you risk jossling the assurance of those who are?? What impact can that cause on a Christian’s life?
2. Where in the Bible does it say ways we can know for sure that we are saved? And are you sure your interpretation for those passages are correct? For instance, in those passages, does it mention “how much” change, “the timing” of that change, “the quality” of that change, and if the displaying of that change is consistent throughout the life of that Christian? Can there be seasons in the life of a “truly” saved Christian where they don’t display that change and yet still be secured in their salvation??
3. I just think it is contradicting when Piper who believes God chooses those who are saved, says that preachers should scare those who are not saved…. What will that accomplish?
Good questions, Matt. I’ll try to provide some brief answers.
1. This is a tough one to answer. I know there is a better passage than this to examine, but I can’t find it at the moment. Check out James 1. The hypothetical question you ask is one that can’t really be directly answered. As such, I can’t really give you an answer to that, but I can tell you that I don’t think there is really need to ask that question. We are to encourage others in the faith, and if it can be believed that Jesus does not lose those who were given to him, then it follows that you will not cause others to fall from grace by making them ask whether or not they are saved.
2. Step 1 1 John 5:13 says “I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life.” Step 2 Romans 10:9 “That if you confess with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” Step 3 “If you love me, you will keep my commandments.” All the rest of those are hypotheticals that I don’t really think need to be asked. I understand the thinking behind the questions, but without a concrete case, why should the question be asked? Every person is different, and it’s quite possible that someone who was perceived to be a Christian who is no longer living an upright life might never have been saved at all, but merely fooling themselves. But, again. It’s not really a question that you need to ask.
3. There are different fashions by which the Gospel can reach others. For most people I know, the reason they even acknowledge the Gospel at all in the first place is out of their fear of hell. They feel that there is something wrong with their life, imagine the implications of an eternity of suffering, and get scared at that thought, and rightfully so. Hell is a scary thing, and rejecting the Gospel is a scary thing. Part of the Gospel is grace. True. But God is not just a God of unending grace and love. He is also a God of justice and wrath. In order to understand God better, we must understand all of his characteristics.
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