I was an associate minister in a Church in South Carolina.
One day to everyone’s astonishment the Pastor’s adult daughter rose to answer the altar call.
We were all astonished because everyone, including her Pastor Pop, believed she was saved.
The Bible says,Joh 3:3 Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.
This is very clear, if you are not born again, you can not see the kingdom of God.
Many people witness to others. The people hearing the word start to feel convicted of sin. They might even shed some tears. They are asked, Would you like to ask Jesus to be your Lord and Savior. They answer yes but they have no idea what they are doing. They are convicted but not convinced.
The Bible tells us: Luk 13:3 I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.
Act 3:19 Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord;
There are many, many references to repenting and yet, many times we don’t even preach it.
If you do not repent you are not born again. Your decision to deny evil and choose the good is what establishes your heart. It is not just babbling some words that have been placed in your head by an over zealous person trying to Save you.
When I was on deputation there was a Church in California. They were followers of what they called the Jack Hyles style. They asked me if I brought at least 1000 people to the Lord in the past year and did I baptize them. That was their conditions for taking on missionaries. I am sure they saved a lot of money that way.
We don’t Save anyone. It is the Holy Spirit that saves. Yes, during the past two years this ministry is probably responsible for close to 1000 professions of faith. But that was all they are, professions. This figure tells me that I am doing what the Lord said and that is to go everywhere telling the people the gospel of Jesus Christ. I have done that. It is the Holy Spirit’s job to save them.
When witnessing, I have asked some if they were going to Heaven when they die and they assuredly respond YES! When I ask them why they believe that they say because we go to a Born again Church.
Oh, they know all the buzz words. They can say Praise the Lord, and Amen, and Glory to God and sound like any other Christian but they have no idea about truly being born again.
The greek word for repent is Metanoeo. It means to change one’s mind and to think differently. It means to become a Christian you need to change course. I believe sometimes Pastor and Missionary kids have the hardest time being converted. They grow up being good. They obey their parents (I know not all, but many do)
The reality of their being dirty with sin never sinks in so repentance is a hard concept. Yet with God’s grace it is made easier.
For all of you out there who have done this for years and it may have become routine, please make sure as John the Baptist did:
Mat 3:7 But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees come to his baptism, he said unto them, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come?
Mat 3:8 Bring forth therefore fruits meet for repentance:
Mat 3:9 And think not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father: for I say unto you, that God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham.
Born again Churches, fathers who are Godly, …will not save anyone and they should know that. Repent, turn around away from your sin and face Jesus. Think different. Follow Him and truly be born again.
2Co 5:17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.
If someone is truly born again, they will be led to seek God more, to go to Church to be a better person.
Let’s go back to preaching the whole Gospel to a lost world.