We all have people in our lives, or know of people, who are making choices that seem to cause them danger. These people are a risk to others in their life. Sometimes our hearts ache as we witness the destructive path these people are on. Sometimes we are very angry with them because their actions are harming someone we love.
I serve the Lord, the God of Israel, who sent Jesus to rescue us – even those of us outside His chosen nation – from our self-focused way of living. All who reject Jesus have been led astray. Those who claim to be religious or worship God actually “belong to Satan’s synagogue, because they worship and serve Satan rather than God.” They are following “false teaching (‘deeper truths,’ as they call them – the depths of Satan, actually).” Revelation 2: 24
Others claim no allegiance to God. Blindly pursuing whatever they think will lead to their happiness and satisfaction.
What is a God-follower to do? Paul advised Timothy: “Gently instruct those who oppose the truth. Perhaps God will change these people’s hearts and they will learn the truth.” (2 Timothy 2:25)
God is in the business of changing hearts. There are millions of examples where hardened sinners have turned to find grace and have had their lives transformed by the power of Jesus. David Berkowitz is just one extreme example that comes to mind.
Paul continues his thought, “Then they will come to their senses and escape from the devil’s trap. For they have been held captive by him, to do whatever he wants.” (2 Timothy 2:26)
“For even if our Gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing. In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of unbelievers to keep them from seeing the light of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, who is the image of God.” (2 Cor 4:3-4) Because people are blinded, there is an urgency on our part to gently share God’s truth with them so that they may come to knowledge of the truth. They aren’t ‘bad’ people. They are deceived and held captive by sin. We are all equally ‘bad’ before God. We are naturally in a rebellious state before God. Without a miraculous work of God in our heart, our eyes are blinded. It takes an act of God to take the veil away so they can begin to see truth. Lydia listened to Paul’s teaching and “the Lord opened her heart so she accepted what Paul was saying.” Acts 16:14
If there is a person in your life, or someone you know who is not following Christ, not seeking truth, and making decisions you know will lead to their harm, and perhaps the harm of others, even many others,
Don’t consider yourself better than them.
The only reason you have insight and understanding
To know better, and the ability to do better,
Is because of the grace and mercy of God.
We are in a spiritual battle (Ephesians 6).
There is an enemy seeking to deceive and destroy. (John 10:10)
We have been rescued. (Col 1)
Maybe we were born into a righteous,
God-fearing, God-following family heritage.
Maybe we were snatched from rebellion,
Rescued through the power of God
From the dominion of darkness
Brought into the Kingdom of Jesus, God’s beloved. (Col 1)
However we find ourselves basking in His grace,
Spared from the ravages of evil and sin,
It was not achieved
Through our works of righteousness.
Any victory seen in our lives
Is a result of the work of our victorious, all powerful God.
“After the Lord your God
has given you victory and blessing,
Never say in your heart
‘I am blessed by God,
because I am such a good person.’ (Deuteronomy 9)
God’s blessing on your life is an opportunity
For you to reflect His glory
And radiate glory back to Him.
This will include gently sharing truth
And praying for hopelessly lost people.
Author: Becky Hastings, wife, mother, grandmother, passionate follower of Jesus Christ and truth seeker, especially in the areas of health and children. Facing a world quite different from the one in which I grew up, I seek to research and understand the true route to health, freedom and joyful family living!