Guilty…… Of what?

Topics:   religion    jesus    evangelism   

Posted by Rod Neufeld on April 20, 2016

I was listening to the radio this week and heard a new Newsboys song called “Guilty”. I believe it is on the “God’s Not Dead 2” soundtrack. It really got me thinking: I remember when I was younger and in school it was ok to talk about God and Jesus. It wasn’t considered criminal or taboo.

Why is it now? We can talk about Allah, or Vishnu or the Great Spirit and all is fine. But mention Jesus and people get into an uproar. I would like to think that there is just something wrong with the world we live in. That it is really just a big mistake that people don’t see.

Well, that is partially correct: they don’t see it. The rest is not. You see, the world is functioning as to be expected. Jesus made it pretty clear that His name would bring persecution, division and hatred. It’s kind of odd when you think about it. The only one to ever walk this earth with perfect peace in His heart, who healed people and forgave people is more hated than a man-made god that teaches submission or death.

Other man-made gods require unattainable acts for forgiveness. More perplexing is that they expect us to do things to balance some kind of scale to do good to outweigh the bad and we are
okay with that. We accept that we do bad stuff and so try to undo it with good stuff. No conflict, no anger, no protest.

Jesus said we aren’t bad because we do bad. We ARE bad therefore we do bad things. (Matthew 15:17-19)

But, we don’t have to worry as Jesus already paid the price. We just have to accept his gift of grace and mercy and he will put good in our hearts and minds. (Hebrews 8:10-12)

Here is the problem: we hate that! Both religion and Jesus say we do bad. Only one says, “I got you covered.” Most people want to reject that with disdain and venom. As Spock would say, “that is illogical.” (I always wanted to put a Star Trek reference into a blog).

It is illogical, but how can we see the truth when nobody desires to know it?

Here is a truth we can sink our teeth into: “Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” John 14:6 NKJV

That was Jesus, He doesn’t lie!

Here is another truth: “Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it.” Matthew 7:13 NKJV

There is only one way!

If I am going to be found guilty of something, I want it to be based on truth, not lies.

A lot of people talk about Heaven and wanting to go there. What they don’t understand is that the Heaven about which they speak is under lock and key. And, Jesus has the key. In fact, He is the key. Heaven is His and entry is by His Discretion.

So, you can make up your own god and your own rules. In the end, they are just made up gods and rules.

Only one truth remains: “that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth,” Philippians 2:10 NKJV

There are only two ways to bow, to receive a crown or to receive a judgement.

For those that don’t quite know, Jesus came the first time as a sacrificial lamb to pay for sin and die on the cross. Thus taking all of the wrath of God.

The second time he will come as a Lion with the purpose of judgement and sentencing. His law is perfect and His judgment will be final because he is a truly good judge.

I know that doesn’t sound very “loving”. I thought the same of my parents every time they punished me for doing wrong. Only, they weren’t the problem. The problem was I WAS GUILTY!

I posted a picture of myself a while back that said, “Guilty,” after the movie “God’s Not Dead,” first came out. I struggled with the question that was asked, “If you were accused of being a Christian, would there be enough evidence in your life that convict you?”

To my non-Christian friends: we do not bring a message of hate or intolerance. Having a different opinion is not intolerance. It is just a different opinion. Sometimes we come across in a way that is not popular or even misunderstood. We are commissioned with a responsibility to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ so that those we love will find peace and salvation and so they shall know the truth that will make them free.

To my Christian friends: remember the great commission, keep Christ first and press on. Words sting but wounds will heal. Remember what Stephen said as he was stoned to death for sharing the truth in love.

“Then he knelt down and cried out with a loud voice, “Lord, do not charge them with this sin.” And when he had said this, he fell asleep.” Acts 7:60 NKJV

Our job is to love and forgive, yes the Gospel can hurt and sound offensive. If we must be hated may it be for the Gospel and not our behaviour. The world doesn’t need to forgive us for our mistakes but we must forgive them for theirs.

“For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.” Matthew 6:14-15 NKJV

P.S. IT IS HARD AND JESUS KNOWS IT! That doesn’t mean we have an excuse, but we do receive grace. Grace that we are to show to others!