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Category Archives: lostness

“Unlike Jesus” – A Theology Matters Retreat for Dayspring Camp – Part 1

Friends:  From August 3-5 I have the privilege of leading a group of young people at Dayspring Camp in Ironton, Mo., through a study of friendship evangelism.  I want to take the next few posts to survey some of what we will be studying as we think about how we can become friends of sinners like Jesus was!

Session #1- A Theology of LOSTNESS!

Our primary text for the weekend will be Matthew 11 where we read Jesus saying, “18 For John came neither eating nor drinking, and they say, ‘He has a demon.’ 19 The Son of Man came eating and drinking, and they say, ‘Here is a glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners.’ But wisdom is proved right by her deeds.”

Dr. Francis Schaeffer, author of The God Who Is There and Escape from Reason said, “We have in a real sense lost sense of the lostness of the lost!”  We must recover a sense of the lostness of the human being before God.

Jesus’ story of the prodigal son in Luke 15 is the best illustration of lostness, it seems to me.  After discussing the lost sheep and the lost coin, the Lord speaks of the prodigal son who rejected his family, prematurely demanded his share of the inheritance, and went off and debauched himself.  But the primary point of the story, I think, is not that son, but the older brother who resented the father’s joy and celebration when his renegade younger brother came to his senses and returned home.  He essentially said to the father, “I’m constantly working in the fields for you and you’ve never even thrown a small party for me!”  The older brother clearly represents the “Pharisees and the teachers of the law [who] muttered, “This man welcomes sinners and eats with them.” (v. 2).

In their religiosity the Pharisees and the teachers of the law had lost a sense of their own lostness, counting on their own righteousness instead of the grace and mercy of God!

The human person does not enter this world spiritually neutral, but rather as an enemy of God (Rom. 5:10).   And all who come into this world are lost and under the wrath of God (Jn. 3:36).  Liberal theology teaches that we are all children of God and just need to learn how to live Christian lives.  But creation does not equal redemption!  According to the Lord Jesus, He came as “the Son of Man to seek and to save the lost.” (Lk. 9).

Many years ago a little boy and his twin sister became lost in a small community outside Boston. After they were missing for several hours, the police were called and a search party was organized. Meanwhile, the little boy and girl both showed up when they heard the commotion as the search party got organized. They asked what was going on and were told that a little boy and girl had been lost. For the next two hours they helped search for themselves!

People don’t search for themselves.  Have you joined Jesus in His rescue mission to find lost people?  (to be continued)

 

 
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Posted by on July 29, 2018 in lostness

 

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Religious Lostness Is Still Lostness!

My heart is sad this morning, friends.  I just spent three hours last night trying to win my Baha’i friend to Christ.  He is a local professional who is a leader in the movement.  His religious zeal is unquestionable.  He is in the middle of a nineteen-day fast (nothing to eat or drink from sunrise to sunset, not even a stick of gum).  We had supper together (after sunset) and talked about Christianity and Baha’i for the entire time.

If you know little about the Baha’i religion, you might go here.  One website Screenshot 2016-03-11 06.34.11defined Baha’i as “A sect of Islam evolving into a major independent religion with approximately five million believers worldwide. Buddha, Jesus, Muhammad, Bahá‘u’lláh and others are viewed as a succession of divine messengers. A 19th century Persian teacher, the Báb, (or “Gate”) predicted Bahá’u’lláh’s coming. Baha’i advocates a new global order of sexual equality, a one-world economic system to eliminate poverty, and a one-world religion.” (Watchman Fellowship).

My friend — let’s call him Michael — is thoroughly immersed in his religion.  I’ve never met a Christian more dedicated to his belief system.  No amount of evidence will convince Michael that he is following a false prophet — Bahá‘u’lláh — and, consequently, has the wrong view of Jesus Christ.  And that saddens me.

Screenshot 2016-03-11 06.36.33Baha’i wants to unite all the religions of the world, to put an end to religious fighting and killing, to establish a New World Order.  Michael admitted that he does not see Jesus as God manifest in the flesh, but simply as a manifestation of God (like Buddha, Muhammad, etc.).  There are thousands of ancient manuscripts which the Baha’i consider their authority, the Bible being only one among many sources.

Michael said that Baha’i parents do not teach their children that they are born sinners, but emphasize their nobility as made in the image of God.  I asked, “If you don’t talk about sin, then why would any of us need a Savior?”  He did not hesitate to state, “Jesus is my Savior!”  But when we began to define our terms, we were not in agreement on the gospel.

Three takeaways from my time with my Baha’i friend:

(1) We Christians must, absolutely must, spend time with people of other religious faiths.  They need our Savior!

(2) We Christians must know our Bibles and our doctrine so that we can show the other person the differences and why they matter.

(3) We Christians must get out into the world of lost people and share the gospel as best we can.

Would you pray for my friend Michael this morning?  And for my heart which is broken over his lostness?

 
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Posted by on March 12, 2016 in lostness

 

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Time for a Great Cartoon! Lostness!

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The late apologist Dr. Francis Schaeffer put it succinctly:  “We have in a real sense lost sense of the lostness of the lost.”

Questions:

1.  How can we communicate man’s lostness to today’s unbelievers?

2.  What biblical texts come to your mind about LOSTNESS?

 
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Posted by on October 20, 2014 in lostness

 

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