Tuesday, August 23, 2005

The influence we can have on children

Phil Johnson posted an article on the influence of godly people on Charles Spurgeon life. What is interesting is that this is not simply a case of one influencing a child to run forward to “accept” salvation but his story is so much more. The influence on his life led him to sincerely look at his life in light of God’s glory and thus lead him to true repentance. We today either are too quick to seek the conversion of children or are too shallow to help them see why they need to be converted. This lack of teaching as to what salvation really is may be why there are so many youth lost out there today who not many years before were considered saved.

We can say that Spurgeon was unusual, and it is today, but how much of what we see as unusual is a product of our lowering of the bar to make such a conversion unusual. There is a book called (Here is one of the good long old titles) A Token for Children: Being an Exact Account of the Conversion, Holy and Exemplary Lives, and Joyful Deaths of Several Young Children in Two Parts to Which Is Added a token by James Janeway and Cotton Mather that tells of the conversion of a number of children and the stories are amazing in that I am not sure many adults see their conversion in such light. It is an interesting read in that it does seem to say that while God is the one that revealed the truth to these children the instruments used were people that shared the whole Gospel and not a watered down children’s version. Children understand much more than we give them credit for and often it is our lack of trust that they can grasp harder truths that leads to a shallow understanding by them as children and later as youth and adults.

Grace and Peace to You,

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