Friday, July 2, 2010

Get Off The Fence

A lot of people have a tendency to put things off until the last minute. Unfortunately, that includes receiving salvation. Examples of procrastinators in the Bible include Pharaoh delaying deliverance from the plague of frogs in Exodus chapter 8. When the Apostle Paul presented the gospel to Felix in Acts 24, the governor’s reply in verse 25 was to meet again “at a convenient time.”

When you are out evangelizing, you’ll encounter people that claim they will get right with God at a later time. Some have this idea they must clean themselves up first before they can commit their lives to the Lord. Yesterday in Lincoln, Illinois, the Lord led me to approach a woman sitting by herself on a park bench. This woman used to go to church but had backslidden and admitted to having an affair with a married man. I reminded her of various Scriptures including Hebrews 13:4, “Marriage is honorable among all, and the bed undefiled; but fornicators and adulterers God will judge.” After ministering to her for a few minutes, I asked if she would let me pray a blessing over her. She agreed and so I prayed for her and bound the devil. Then I offered to lead her to salvation. This time she was receptive and asked Jesus back into her heart. Praise God!

Jesus said in Luke 14:23, "Go out into the highways and hedges, and compel them to come in, that my house may be filled." Of course, we are not to beg or pressure people to come into God’s kingdom. In Luke 18, Jesus did not make another appeal to the rich young ruler who wouldn’t forsake all to follow Him. However, people need to realize it’s dangerous to resist the drawing of the Holy Spirit because it will harden their hearts (Hebrews 3:7-15). The Bible says in Genesis 6:3 that God "shall not strive with man forever."

Unless the Holy Spirit leads me otherwise, I like to point out to procrastinators that they are gambling with their eternal destiny. If they get killed instantly in an accident, terrorist attack, or shooting (I often cite 9/11 or the Virginia Tech Massacre as examples), then it's too late for them to say a quick prayer of forgiveness. There are no guarantees for tomorrow.

As stated before, a tool that I sometimes use to help procrastinators “get off the fence” is offering a prayer of blessing. Another time while evangelizing at Union Station in downtown Toronto, I approached a young man who was standing around smoking a cigarette. Sean heard the gospel before but hadn’t given much thought about what would happen to him after he died. So I asked Sean if I could say a quick prayer for him. When he agreed, I prayed, “Father in the name of Jesus, I ask you to bless Sean and make yourself real to him. I bind all spirits of the enemy that would hinder Sean from making the right decision in receiving salvation.” Then I asked Sean, “Would you like to receive Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior?” He replied, “Absolutely” and got born again.

Do you know people who need to get off the fence regarding their eternal destiny?

"And if it seems evil to you to serve the LORD, choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.” - Joshua 24:15

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