Sin, the Gospel, and Evangelistic Responsibility

Comment addressed to me on a Christian blog today”

Ya know, Daniel, I do not need to talk to people about their sins.  I only want to talk to people about the Savior that loved me enough to come and assist me in living a successful life on this earth.
Once the people I talk with about my LORD and Savior and what He is to me and done in my life, it is then up to Him, through the power of His Holy Spirit to bring conviction for sin upon those whom He chooses.

Beating people down with all the sin I look for in their lives is really NOT my job.

My response:

Somebody needs to confront the person needing salvation with the sin issue, since it IS after all, the central issue that the message of the gospel addresses. I find nowhere in the Bible that says Jesus died to change your temporal life. If you do, let me know. You are free to tell (or NOT tell) people whatever you want, of course. Just don’t claim to be sharing a gospel message that has the ‘power to save’ when you fail to address the issue of sin. (Paul’s definition, after all).

The blog thread wasn’t really about evangelism, not even close, but we all know about ‘rabbit trails’. A ‘familiar atheist’ had once again complained about the ‘cruel God’ that commanded the slaying of groups of people in the OT (not the thread topic either), and the subject of ‘judgment’ had surfaced. To no one in particular I commented that:

Anyone who wakes up in Hell has only himself/herself to blame and everyone who wakes up in Heaven has only God to thank.

Somehow that prompted my friend to make his remarks about not needing to speak of sin and my subsequent response. Lest you think I was somehow unkind, this same man has told me the same thing over the last couple of years, even when I emphasized that I was only emphasizing the central issue the gospel message addresses being the issue of sin. For some reason even talking about sin is ‘looking’ for all the sin in their live and beating them over the head with it.

I’m not sure what causes this particular phenomena  to appear, but I see it often. I cannot claim innocence either, for there was a time when I felt the same way as my friend. I like to think I outgrew it with careful Bible study and learning that I had been duped by being told how we all have this marvelous ‘free will’ that by nature has the ability to come to Christ. I

I’ll stand by my conviction that ‘sin’ is the main issue that has to be gotten to (by somebody). At the same time I am convinced that we will meet many in heaven who think that their ‘natural free will’ got them there!

Be blessed!

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4 responses to “Sin, the Gospel, and Evangelistic Responsibility

  1. I can only say that in my understanding, sin is what we are being freed from the bondage of. In Deut 32, we are given a picture of a people being bought out of bondage in Egypt. In the NT, that same idea of being bought is now not just out of slavery to Egypt or the world, but bought and brought out of slavery to sin, purchased by the blood of Christ.

    I would also have to say that if God is sovereign over salvation, He expects that the true gospel be told. However hard it is to hear, someone who is indeed marked for redemption will accept the message…and that includes the reality that we are all dead in spirit, sold into bondage to sin, bound for destruction and in need of a savior. With time, I think that then, rather than just being concerned with staying out of hell, the believer will then start to realize that their salvation and their need to follow Christ has less to do with staying out of hell, and more to do with wanting to be conformed to the image of the One who died and came back to life. There seems to be a change from self preservation from hell to the realization that God is God, and He is Holy and sin is disgusting. We come to the point that we hate our sins and want nothing more than to be free forever from it’s hold on our lives. What once might have been fire insurance becomes a true desire to be conformed to the Savior out of a love for the Father and His Son rather than a fear of hell.

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