April 4, 2008

The Way of Salvation

Posted in Evangelism, Gospel at 6:00 pm by Dan Lowe

Yesterday, in our exposition of Acts 11:19-21 we attempted to define biblical evangelism.  We saw that God uses ordinary people in the work of evangelism… but the message they proclaim is anything but ordinary.

Getting this extraordinary message right is of the utmost importance.  This message is summed up well for us by the apostle Paul in I Corinthians 15:1-4:

1 Corinthians 15:1-4 (ESV) – 1 Now I would remind you, brothers, of the gospel I preached to you, which you received, in which you stand, 2 and by which you are being saved, if you hold fast to the word I preached to you—unless you believed in vain. 3 For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, 4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures…

 

In our postmodern, pluralistic culture, this message is often diluted (should I say polluted?) until it is no longer the true biblical gospel.  Therefore, it is wise for us to constantly check ourselves and see if our understanding of the gospel message is biblical or not.

But how should we share this message with others?  What response should we call for from those we share the gospel with?

Listen to the words of A.W. Pink in describing the message of the gospel and the appropriate response from sinful people like you and me…

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The Way of Salvation

By A.W. Pink

What must I do to be saved? Saved from what? What is it you wish to be saved from? Hell? That proves nothing. Nobody wants to go there. The issue between God and man is SIN. Do you wish to be saved from it?

What is sin? Sin is a species of rebellion against God. It is self-pleasing: it is the utter ignoring of God’s claims: being completely indifferent whether my conduct pleases or displeases Him.

Before God saves a man He convicts him of his sinnership. By this I do not mean that he says with everybody else, “O yes we are all sinners, I know that.” Rather do I mean that the Holy Spirit makes me feel in my heart that I have been a life-long rebel against God, and that my sins are so many, so great, so black, that I fear that I have transgressed beyond the reach of Divine mercy.

Have you ever had that experience? Have you seen yourself to be totally unfit for heaven? For the presence of a Holy God? Do you now perceive that there is no good thing in you, nothing good credited to your account, that all the way through you have loved the things God hates and hated the things God loves?

Has the realization of this broken your heart before God? Has it made you mourn that you have so despised His Sabbaths, neglected His Word, and given Him no real place at all in your thoughts, affections and life? If you have not yet seen and felt this personally, then at present there is no hope for you, for God says, “Except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish” — Luke 13:3. And if you die in your present condition you will be lost forever.

But if you have been brought to the place where sin is your greatest plague, where offending God is your greatest grief, and where your deepest desire is now to please and honor Him; then there is hope for you. “The Son of man came to seek and to save that which was lost” — Luke 19:10. And He will save you providing you are ready and willing to throw down the weapons of your warfare against Him, bow to His Lordship, and surrender yourself to His control.

His blood can wash the foulest clean. His grace can support and uphold the weakest. His power can deliver the tried and tempted. “Behold now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation” — II Corinthians 6:2. Yield yourself to Christ’s claims. Give Him the throne of your heart. Turn over to Him the regulation of your life. Trust in His atoning death. Love Him with all your soul. Obey Him with all your might and He will conduct you to heaven. “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved” — Acts 16:31.

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Have you responded to the call of Christ in repentance and faith?

Is this the message that you announce when you share the gospel with others?

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