Monday, October 1, 2012

Evidence Bible
“We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.” Winston Churchill

What Hollywood Believes – Kevin Costner

Based on Ray’s book, “What Hollywood Believes” –

Regarding a role he played in a movie, Kevin Costner was asked, “Did it change the way you believe or have an effect on your faith?” Kevin replied, “Well, I have always wanted to believe that there is something more to life than what we have here on earth. I could relate with what [the character] was going through and the questions he was asking, so in that sense, it did affect me. I mean, it would be nice to know that there is something more, a higher power waiting for us, wouldn’t it?” Asked if he believed in heaven, he replied, “I desperately want to! I mean, I really want to believe that a part of me will continue on after this life and that there’s more to me and to this life than just what’s here on Earth. Yes, I want to believe.”

Kevin said he wants to believe. What do you think holds people back from believing?

It reminds of the objection: “I’ve heard how others have ‘found God,’ but I’ve never found God.” It begs to ask, where have you been looking?

Jeremiah 29:13 says, “You will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.” The Bible teaches that God is not far from each one of us (Acts 17:27), but the reason many can’t seem to find God is often the same reason a thief can’t seem to find a police officer: he won’t look. Most people honestly don’t want to find God because that means a complete change of lifestyle. Personal sinful ambition must be cast down and purity, love, and disgust for sin exalted. “Me” must be dethroned, and God made King of our lives.

Now, that is one side of the coin, they may love their sin more than the truth. They love the darkness and hate the light, and won’t come to the light lest their deeds be exposed. However, there is a totally flip side of the coin… they may not have all the information. They may have never properly heard the gospel! It’s why we witness. Many have visited a church service, but that doesn’t mean they’ve heard a clear preaching of the cross.

You have two different scenarios, one who has an ulterior motive for rejecting Christ and one who just hasn’t understood the good news. What can you do?

1)     They love sin and don’t care. Paul reasoned with unbelievers from the Law and the Prophets. We are to “compel” people to come to the feast. Jude 1:22,23: “And on some have compassion, making a distinction; but others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire, hating even the garment defiled by the flesh.”

However, Jesus also elaborated, in Mt. 7:6 “Do not give what is holy to the dogs; nor cast your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you in pieces.” When it’s obvious they are swine, walk away and find someone who doesn’t understand the gospel.

2)     They don’t understand the gospel. (From the Evidence Bible) Make the bullet hit the target. It is obvious from Scripture that God requires us not only to preach to sinners, but also to teach them. The servant of the Lord must be “able to teach, patient, in humility correcting” those who oppose them (2 Tim. 2:24,25). For a long while I thought I was to leap among sinners, scatter the seed, then leave. But our responsibility goes further. We are to bring the sinner to a point of understanding his need before God. Psalm 25:8 says, “Good and upright is the LORD; therefore He teaches sinners in the way.” Psalm 51:13 adds, “Then I will teach transgressors Your ways, and sinners shall be converted to You.” The Great Commission is to “make disciples of all the nations . . .teaching them to observe all things” (Matt. 28:19,20). The disciples obeyed the command “daily in the temple, and in every house, they did not cease teaching and preaching Jesus as the Christ” (Acts 5:42). The “good-soil” hearer is he who “hears . . .and understands” (Matt. 13:23). Philip the evangelist saw fit to ask his potential convert, the Ethiopian, “Do you understand what you are reading?” Some preachers are like a loud gun that misses the target. It may sound effective, but if the bullet misses the target, the exercise is in vain. He may be the largest-lunged, chandelier-swinging, pulpit-pounding preacher this side of the Book of Acts, but if the sinner leaves the meeting failing to understand his desperate need of God’s forgiveness, then the preacher has failed. He has missed the target, which is the understanding of the sinner. This is why the Law of God must be used in preaching. It is a “tutor” to bring “the knowledge of sin” (Gal. 3:24; Rom. 3:20). It teaches and instructs. A sinner will come to “know His will, and approve the things that are excellent,” if he is “instructed out of the Law” (Rom. 2:18).

We can also throw in there, if you’re sincere about wanting to know God then look to where God has revealed Himself: His Son. Scripture says, “He who has seen Me [Jesus] has seen the Father” (Jn. 14:9) and, “He who acknowledges the Son has the Father also” (1 Jn. 2:23). God is not intimidated by skepticism. I encourage you, with purity of intent, to commit to studying the Bible daily. You can start in the book of “JOHN,” which is the 4th section of the New Testament. When you study the Holy Scriptures you’ll read Jesus’ own words, discover His miracles, and see God express the depth of His love when He had His Son, Jesus Christ, die on the cross for our sins. In addition to daily study of the Bible, seek God in prayer, and get involved in a local Christian church. God will make Himself known to you when you seek Him with all your heart. Scripture says, “Draw near to God and He will draw near to you” (Jas. 4:8).

Logan’s Story

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