Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Jesus, What Are You Talking About?

The greatest need in the local church is for the lost to be born again.....

Now there was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews; this man came to Jesus by night and said to Him, "Rabbi, we know that You have come from God as a teacher; for no one can do these signs that You do unless God is with him." Jesus answered and said to him, "Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God." Nicodemus said to Him, "How can a man be born when he is old? He cannot enter a second time into his mother's womb and be born, can he?" Jesus answered, "Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Do not be amazed that I said to you, 'You must be born again.'” John 3:1-7.

“The Barna Organization estimates that “born-again Christians” represent 41 percent of the adult population—conversely this would imply that 59 percent are lost or unsaved. Barna’s definition of the born-again includes those who say they have made a personal commitment to Jesus Christ that is still important in their life today and who say they know they will go to heaven after they die because they have confessed their sins and accepted Jesus Christ as their Savior.” A Publication of Research, North American Mission Board, SBC http://www.namb.net/

Of course, all estimates of the Born Again population in the United States is not an accurate assessment because different folks have differing ideas about their own spiritual conditions. However, everyone will one day the truth will be unveiled when Christ returns for His Church.

But we do not want you to be uninformed, brethren, about those who are asleep, so that you will not grieve as do the rest who have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so God will bring with Him those who have fallen asleep in Jesus. For this we say to you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord, will not precede those who have fallen asleep. For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we shall always be with the Lord. Therefore comfort one another with these words. 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18.

This returns the thought at hand. My question is, “How many lost people, who may think that they are “Born Again” are occupying seats in local churches on Sunday mornings? I do not know of any particular assessment that has been made for this, but Evangelist Billy Graham believes that a major portion of church members are spiritually lost. Read what the Apostle John has to say in Revelation 3:1-6.

"To the angel of the church in Sardis write: He who has the seven Spirits of God and the seven stars, says this: 'I know your deeds, that you have a name that you are alive, but you are dead. 'Wake up, and strengthen the things that remain, which were about to die; for I have not found your deeds completed in the sight of My God. 'So remember what you have received and heard; and keep it, and repent Therefore if you do not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what hour I will come to you. 'But you have a few people in Sardis who have not soiled their garments; and they will walk with Me in white, for they are worthy. 'He who overcomes will thus be clothed in white garments; and I will not erase his name from the book of life, and I will confess his name before My Father and before His angels. 'He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.'”

The Letters to the Seven Churches found in the book of Revelation demonstrate to us what the Bride of Christ will look like when He returns. This is concerning and frightening to everyone who calls Jesus Savior and Lord of life. My question returns again….Are you Born Again?

Jesus answered and said to him, "Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God."

Why, you might ask, are you concerned about the local church membership? Be reminded that Jesus is speaking to a leader of the Jewish faith which had the prophecies concerning the coming Messiah and missed Him. Are we any different? We have the Gospel Message in our hands and enormous numbers in our population and within the local church have obviously missed Him,…… again…..

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