Tuesday, December 20, 2005

"God Loves You" and Evangelism

I came across an article by Gregg Koukl at Oldtruth.com that asked the question with regards to using “God Loves You” in evangelism. It is interesting that no matter how the so called successful preachers today avoid the topic of sin so as not to upset people, in Acts the subject of sin is emphasized. None of this is to say that God does not love those He died for as we know this is true. What this article points out is that the concept of stressing God’s love for the one we are sharing with is not predominant in the scriptures.

Can we truly say: “God Loves You and has a wonderful plan for your life” and know that for certain? Even if the person is a Christian we can not guarantee a wonderful life from a worldly perspective. The only thing we can promise is that if one becomes a believer they will have a relationship with God through Christ. All of the other benefits are just that, benefits, but can not necessarily be promised and should not be the sole focus of the Gospel we preach. The truth is that making one cognizant of sin does truly show love since it is the conviction of sin and repentance that brings one to Christ and salvation from the penalty of sin.

Just some thoughts to keep in mind when sharing your faith, or better yet when sharing what scripture says about faith and salvation.


RevyRev said...

The article on Oldtruth.com was a intersting read. I wonder if the Bible would allow a dichodomy to be made between "God loves", and "repent and believe on Jesus for forgivenss of sins". I think John 3:16 brings those two together. God's love in one sense is the Gospel and is demonstrated by the gospel. What the Apostles called the gospel is what John says is how God loved the world.

The problem as i see it is not that we use the words "God loves you", butthat we fail to show a sinner their sin and their total unworthiness before a Holy God. So God's love is no longer an undeserved love but rather a deserved love. God's love is merciful not merited.

It is the concept of a man centered love that we should fight not the word love itself.

P.S. The Crusade tract that reads "God Loves you and has a wonderful plan for your life” has been changed from the original tract that says "God loves you and offers a wonderful plan for your life". I use the older version that says "offers".

Tony said...

I agree about John 3:16 as it states how He loves. I do not think one needs to avoid the idea of love but so as to show how love is shown in realizing ones sin and God dealing with that sin.

By the way I did not know about the different wording as I had always seen it as ..."has a wonderful plan.."

Personally I still avoid the "God loves you" as I am not sure how God sees the person I am talking to. I am sure He has a different love for the elect than He does for others. Since I do not know who the elect are and I want to share with all I avoid statements that may be misleading or at the least misunderstood.

Actually I have been focusing more lately on the idea of God being the focus of the Gospel and the not he individuals benefits of a relationship with God as I can not guarantee those.