Accusation vs. Acceptance (Gospel Snapshots)
A lady I once spoke with said what turned her off to Christianity, in her younger years, was that every Christian she knew was against something. They were against abortion, booze, adultery, divorce, and every other type of sin.
She said when she asked them what they were ’for,’ they only said, “Jesus!” It’s true we should be for Jesus, but this doesn’t communicate anything. We’re often seen as critical, judgmental and prideful because of Jesus. We view ourselves as superior because of Jesus.
Yes, we should be against sin. But sin doesn’t keep people out of heaven. All the bad stuff they do doesn’t send them to hell. What sends them to hell is not receiving life, by being connected to Jesus. If they stopped doing anything bad, and only did good, they still wouldn’t go to heaven. They go to heaven because of Jesus!
But you don’t want to connect to someone if you think all he does is condemn you. That’s why Jesus says, “Do not think that I will accuse you to the Father” (John 5:45). The way Jesus is often presented, you’d think all he did was condemn us, and look down his nose at us.
As Christians, what should our message be? It must be the love of Jesus, and his acceptance of us. It should not be a message of accusation and condemnation. Yes, people need to turn from sin, and live better. But this is not the gospel. Preaching this is putting the cart before the horse, and it turns people off to Jesus.
As ministers of the New Testament (II Cor 3:6), we should preach the benefits of the Kingdom, not the detriments for not being in the Kingdom! God wants us to present the light, not the darkness!
We should preach God’s love, peace, joy — and his imparted righteousness to us because of Jesus (II Cor 5:21). He wants us to present his love in the New Testament gospel, not the LAW of the Old Testament. See it: the law was nailed to the cross of Christ (Col 2:14, Eph 2:15-16).
If you live in law and rules, you’re SIN-consciousness, and have a ministry of condemnation (II Cor 3:9). This ministry does not allow you to present the gospel. Most folks don’t need to hear what’s wrong with them — most of them know that perfectly well without being told. Knowing what is wrong with you makes you run from God and hide from him.
We need to tell them all that can be RIGHT with them in Jesus! This attracts them to God. It makes them want to connect with God, not run from him.
This article was posted on March 06, 2006
Disclaimer: The information presented and opinions expressed herein are those of the authors
and do not necessarily represent the views of ArticleCity.com and/or its partners.