Sub-Title: Don’t get excited. We are fine.
“Now my soul is troubled, and what shall I say? ‘Father, save me from this hour’? No, it was for this very reason I came to this hour. Father, glorify your name!”
Then a voice came from heaven, “I have glorified it, and will glorify it again.” The crowd that was there and heard it said it had thundered; others said an angel had spoken to him.
Jesus said, “This voice was for your benefit, not mine. Now is the time for judgment on this world; now the prince of this world will be driven out. And I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to myself.” He said this to show the kind of death he was going to die.
The crowd spoke up, “We have heard from the Law that the Messiah will remain forever, so how can you say, ‘The Son of Man must be lifted up’? Who is this ‘Son of Man’?”
Then Jesus told them, “You are going to have the light just a little while longer. Walk while you have the light, before darkness overtakes you. Whoever walks in the dark does not know where they are going. Believe in the light while you have the light, so that you may become children of light.” When he had finished speaking, Jesus left and hid himself from them.
– John 12:27-36
“Very few of us have any understanding of the reason why Jesus Christ died. If sympathy is all that human beings need, then the Cross of Christ is an absurdity and there is absolutely no need for it. What the world needs is not ’a little bit of love,’ but major surgery. …
“The calling of a New Testament worker is to expose sin and to reveal Jesus Christ as Savior. Consequently, he cannot always be charming and friendly, but must be willing to be stern to accomplish major surgery. We are sent by God to lift up Jesus Christ, not to give wonderfully beautiful speeches. We must be willing to examine others as deeply as God has examined us. We must also be sharply intent on sensing those Scripture passages that will drive the truth home, and then not be afraid to apply them.”
– Oswald Chambers, My Utmost for His Highest
It is said that in these modern times that you cannot reach the non-believer by mentioning ‘sin’. Sin is a negative concept. If you let people know that they are sinful, it might hurt their self esteem. So, if you mention that they are sinners, they will simply walk away. You would have lost your audience. The modern evangelist of this type would say that Chambers is ‘out of touch.’
My question is this? Chambers mentions that we need major surgery. That surgery was inflicted upon Jesus on the cross. Was Jesus just playing around? Was all that suffering unnecessary? No, Jesus died on the cross to save sinners.
Now here is the important question or two. Is someone’s self esteem so important that they will keep it intact here on earth and in Hell? If you have someone that you are witnessing to, is your primary concern the person’s soul or their self esteem? Are we to sit by idly, protecting a generation’s self esteem in order for them all to go to Hell?
Granted, we must respect those with which we are sharing the Gospel. But what I have noticed in most people, and in myself especially, that there is plenty of self esteem in the well-adjusted person to go around.
And here’s another thing that I have learned. If the Holy Spirit is working in the other person’s life, bringing them to an awareness of the tremendous weight of the sin in their lives, they are going to want to hear about Jesus placing their sins on His shoulders on the cross. It will not harm their self esteem at all. It will improve it once they have the risen Savior in their hearts.
But if the Holy Spirit is not working in the other person’s life, they will walk away whether you mention sin or not.
Salvation is totally in God’s hands. If the Holy Spirit is not working within them, there is nothing that we can say to sway them toward accepting Jesus. We just pass the message along. Maybe God has plans for that person later on. Sometimes the rejections to the message hurt us, the ones who pass the message along, even our self esteem, when we lose sight of God being in control.
Are you ready for major surgery today? If so, let’s scrub up.
Soli Deo Gloria. Only to God be the Glory.