Thursday, August 9, 2012

How Shall They Hear and Believe?

But how can they call on him to save them unless they believe in him?  And how can they believe in him if they have never heard about him?  And how will anyone go and tell them without being sent?    (Romans 10:14-15 NLT)
            The Scripture verses cited above are an enigma to many people.  What is the Apostle Paul trying to convey in these verses?  Is it the urgency of the call to go or is it the message itself?  Or is it a little of both?  Is Paul referring to the gospel message in general terms, or does he have specific truths about the gospel in mind? 
            Let us deal first with the question: “How shall they hear?  There seems to be a sense of urgency behind the use of this question.  This sense of urgency is felt in other New Testament passages, namely: Jesus said to his disciples, “The harvest is great but the laborers are few…” (Matthew 9:37a NLT)  (See also: 2 Corinthians 5:18; Ephesians 2:17)
            Jesus came down from heaven on a search and rescue mission.  “For the Son of Man came to seek and save those who were lost.”  (Luke 19:10)  Jesus also so said, “If a man has a hundred sheep and one of them gets lost, what will he do?  Won’t he leave the ninety-nine others in the wilderness and go to search for the one that is lost until he finds it?  (Luke 15:4 NLT)
            God has deputized every believer to be a part of his search and rescue mission.  Each one of us has to answer the question posed to Isaiah by the Lord of Hosts, “Who will go for us?”  The Lord expects us to answer as Isaiah did, “Here am I.  Send me.”  (Isaiah 6:8)
            The second crucial question is: “How shall they believe?”  There are specific truths contained in the gospel that must be communicated.  In order for a person to be saved, they must believe in the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.  (1 Corinthians 15:1-4)  It is our responsibility to present these truths in a believable  format.  They must be clearly stated so that no one can go away saying, “I didn’t understand the presentation.”  Jesus said, “The seed that fell on the footpath represents those who hear the message about the Kingdom and don’t understand it.”  (Matthew 19:13a NLT)
            The search and rescue mission Jesus set in motion is now up to us to carry out.  The lost of this world are counting on us to go, pray, give, and preach the gospel.  Are you fully involved in this process?

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