Saturday, July 08, 2006

Pride...our Prison Guard

Jesus heard that they had thrown him out, and when he found him, he said, "Do you believe in the Son of Man?" "Who is he, sir?" the man asked. "Tell me so that I may believe in him." Jesus said, "You have now seen him; in fact, he is the one speaking with you." Then the man said, "Lord, I believe," and he worshiped him. Jesus said, "For judgment I have come into this world, so that the blind will see and those who see will become blind." (John 9:35-39 NIV)
I happen to be reading John Chapter 9 when I came across the above verse of scripture. As with all scripture, it’s accuracy captures the essence of the world in which we live, and as such is a perfect indictment of our fallen society and world. The blind man in the story (and by the way it is a true story) is representative of so few in our world: people who truly want to believe. When Jesus asked the man if he believed in the Son of Man, he didn’t know who that was, but his heart did not dismiss the possibility of believing in something that was obviously greater than himself. When presented with Jesus’ reality, the man believed instantly.

In our world, people are oftentimes not humble enough to want to worship God. When Jesus is presented to most of us, we are unwilling to put aside our “lifestyles” to follow Him. That is why humility in a person is such an endearing quality. It was the man’s humility that allowed him to so readily accept Christ. When I was unsaved, every time that the topic of Jesus or God was presented to me (though in retrospect it was not very often), I was unwilling to subvert myself to accept something that instinctively I knew was greater than myself. For example, I wouldn’t respond to the alter call in church or the opportunity to pursue a religious conversation offered by an acquaintance. I knew I would have to change. I didn’t want to change…although I knew perfectly well that my life was nothing so great to hold on to.

When I finally accepted the sovereignty of Jesus Christ as Lord over myself, it was an act of submission. Thankfully for me I resisted my pride (which was screaming for me to stop) and willingly said in my own way “Lord, I believe” and I have been worshipping Jesus ever since.

I pray for everyone who may be reading this post, and who may be seeing themselves somewhere in this story. I pray that they accept God’s continued offering of Himself to them through His Son Jesus Christ. Overcome your prison guard of pride - it only wants to keep you trapped: Humble yourselves, therefore, under God's mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. (1 Peter 5:6-7 NIV)

3 comments:

Trevor said...

It is with sincere humility and no intent nor desire to enter into any debate about God's precious Gospel of Salvation, that I make the following brief comments:

1. No one become saved because they accepted Jesus. Why!!
Because no one is capable of accepting Jesus. ( See Romans 3 vs 10-18 and Psalm 14 vs 1-3).

2. We become saved by the Grace of God then we will accept Jesus.( See Galatians 2 vs 16 KJV ; Ephesians 2 vs 8-9 and Ezekiel 36 vs 25-27.)

Your actions as described in the penultimate paragraph of this post was as a result of what God discloses in 2 Timothy 1 vs 8-9

My prayer for everyone is that they read the Bible very very carefully, admit they are terrible sinners and cry to God for His mercy. If it is His good pleasure to save us He will do so in His own time.

Peter Shaw said...

Trevor...I have one question? How do you witness to the unbeliever with the approach outlined in the last paragraph. What is the hope that is offered to them? That if they cry out for mercy God may or may not grant it? The Bible is very difinitive on the path to salvation. (Romans 10:9-10) That if you confess with your mouth, "Jesus is Lord," and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved. - No ambiguity in this verse of scripture. The simplicity of the gospel is also it's beauty. Believe in Christ's work on the cross and you will be saved.

Rev. Lisa said...

I agree with your weblog Peter and your comment above to Trevor. I do agree with Trevors remark that we must read the bible very carefully and with that I invite him to do the same. Yes, we are saved by grace, through faith in Jesus Christ. Let me also add that the Bible says, "it is not His will that ANY MAN PERISH but that ALL have everlasting life". That can not happen if we do not confess our sins, repent of our sins and ask Jesus Christ to become Lord of our lives. The Bible states, "Jesus is the way the truth and the life and no one can come unto the Father but through the Son Christ Jesus". "I am the resurrection and the life" Jesus said. We must confess with our mouths and believe in our hearts that Jesus is Lord to be saved. The prison guard in Acts 16 asked Paul, "what must I do to be SAVED". Paul led him to Christ and then his whole household.

If we believed as Trevor, then none of us would have the opportunity to repent of our sins, confess Jesus Christ as Lord and become a part of the wonderful and amazing family of Christ. There would be a 50/50 chance or less of having a relationship with God while we are here and an everlasting one after death if we followed that mindset.

In closing, if we follow Trevor's belief then what was the work at the cross for? What was the shedding of our Lord's blood for? What was His death, burial and resurrection all for?

Let us all humble ourselves and be prepared to touch others with the truth of the Gospel so that they too can receive Christ, by grace, through Faith and live in the joy that we have.

God bless you.

A God who sends people to Hell?