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Comments by James Motley - 2 Sep 2008
I came across your article regarding Salvation online and am in agreement with it. I have some questions that I am wondering if you can help me with though.
If I were to walk up to a person in a foreign land who has not heard the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and told him about it, why should he believe that it is true?
What if he says, that is a wonderful story if it is true, but I have always been told that God is something else. Why should I believe you?
You make a good point in the article that it is not enough to simply “say” that you believe, but that you must actually “believe” it and “accept” the gift.
Is more “evidence” required in order for someone to really believe the Gospel in their heart?
Of course today, we can look at evidence for Intelligent Design, archaeological evidence, fulfilled prophecy, life of Christ, etc and get a stronger sense that we are on the right track with our belief, but in the days of the Bible, it appears as though no “evidence” was usually required. Miracles were sometimes performed which must have been helpful. Some scripture says that the gospel was preached and some “believed” by faith alone that they are being told the truth.
What is really happening at this point in the mind/heart of the person being told of Jesus?
When the gospel is told to someone is the Holy Spirit somehow convicting that person on the spot?
Are we (all people) given some special discernment by God at that point that we are indeed being told the truth? Or are we required to prove it somehow in order to really believe it?
It seems as though God is not requiring that we go and prove it with evidence in order to genuinely “believe”. Think about how when people chat about religion how you can talk about Allah, Buddah, etc., but people get uncomfortable when the name of Jesus Christ is evoked.
Again, are all who hear the Gospel convicted on the spot by the Holy Spirit? Otherwise how can we be guilty of believing or not believing without direct evidence of Jesus’ resurrection?
Does believing really mean accepting or rejecting what we spiritually know after hearing the Gospel?
Are all people who have heard the Gospel in a state of accepting or rejecting God from that point forward, even without further proof?
After all, I can tell someone about Jesus, but I don’t currently have healing powers, etc. to prove that I am speaking with divine authority. If God expects us to accept or reject Him and the gift of salvation, he has to have a mechanism in place to make sure that we are not floating in a state of being unconvicted.
Is a person fooling themselves to say that it sounds great, but they are just not sure if it is true?
Deep down, do all who have heard the Gospel know it is the truth?
Are we wasting are time trying to “prove” there is a God in order to strengthen our faith when we already “know” it somehow?
Or, as an alternative to this line of thinking, is “Faith” merely “Hope”? We don’t really know for sure if the Gospel is true, but those of us who hope to live call on the name if Jesus because we desperately hope that he is indeed the Son of the living God and that the scriptures will be fulfilled.
Of course I have all of my hope in Jesus because I want the precious gift of eternal life! I want to live, and in a better place than this. That is why millions flock to churches on Sunday. They want to live on.
Sorry for the novel and som many question marks, but I hope that I have accurately conveyed my thought process. I am always trying to figure out just exactly what God is up to here! I know that you may have the same questions, but I would be pleased to hear your opinion on the subject.
Go on to
Comments by Bernie Coombs - 15 Sep 2008
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