The other night I watched a program that was just brutal to watch. A college campus had assembled a forum of “religious experts” to discuss salvation and weather Jesus was the only way to salvation. A basic understanding of the parables of the Kingdom could have really dispelled a lot of the unbelief that was perpetrated.
The panel consisted of about seven to nine diverse people. Jews (I think Christian Jew), Catholics, Muslim, fundamentalists and a self proclaimed “Christian Liberal”.
As the panel began to meander away from Christ being the only way to salvation (with every smooth argument in the world), the crowd began to get visibly annoyed. One by one they would stand up and try to bring the conversation back to what Jesus did at Calvary and his atoning work. One woman said in essence, your dismissing the whole of the word of God and aren’t respecting it as the WORD OF GOD.
At that the Christian liberal spoke up proudly quoting the word of John 1:1 “In the beginning was the Word, the was with God and the Word was God. This was the person who was the most dismissive of the idea that salvation was ONLY in Christ (such arrogance). The Muslim woman proudly stated that from day one, Islam has ALWAYS believed that Jesus IS the WORD OF GOD, and that he is even nicknamed that-if I understood correctly. She also expressed no need nor desire to accept Jesus a Lord or personal savior.
I couldn’t believe what was transpiring. I visualized a bowling alley and all these experts, apart from the fundamentalists, being pins that were ready for a person who knew the parables of the Kingdom to roll a perfect strike. Unfortunately, no one had the insight to call his or her bluff.
What if a person would have stood up and said this: “Sir, (the Liberal) you claim that Jesus is the WORD OF GOD. Is that right? Mam, (the Muslim) you also claim that Jesus is the WORD OF GOD right?
Peter said in his epistle, “Being born again not of corruptible SEED, but of incorruptible SEED, by the WORD OF GOD, which lives and abide forever”. JESUS-THE WORD OF GOD-mind you, said in Mark chapter four, “THE SEED IS THE WORD OF GOD”. So then there is a type of trinity in Jesus being the SEED and the WORD.
The functionary place of the seed is in the heart of a man, …“Satan cometh immediately and taketh away the word that is sown IN THE HEART.”
Which of you knowing a farmer, who HAD NEVER planted his seed for the year, and yet he believing that a wonderful crop was about to be produced, wouldn’t say to him (as kindly, political correctly, as respectfully-the fundamentalists were not of these) “sir I have news for you, your not going to reap a crop this year? He might say, “Well why not? I’m as good as the other farmers. I desire a crop really bad. What gives you the right to say that I won’t reap a crop? You in turn say “being good or wanting one has no bearing on weather or not you’ll reap a crop. Harvests are determined by seeds planted, not thinking, not wanting, not begging.” I would venture to say that not one of the panelists would allow a poor fellow with bills to pay, children to feed, a wife to keep, to believe such foolishness. And yet did you know that the “experts” were doing the same thing?
JESUS IS THE SEED. He is to be planted in our HEARTS, by “receiving”-planting, him in there (I call it the sinners prayer). Mark chapter four states:
20 And these are they which are sown on good ground; such as hear the word, and RECEIVE it, and bring forth fruit, some thirtyfold, some sixty, and some an hundred.
And yet in their way of thinking, they were going to reap a crop of incorruptible fruit-salvation, without planting incorruptible seed. NOT!
A little bit of understanding could have pinned these unbelieving believers to the wall. And yet the fundamentalists, who as wonderful as they were, could not call the bluff’s of these panel members.
The panelists no doubt walked away smug, knowing that the scorecard in their heart read, liberals ten fundamentalists zero.
Oh, what a tragedy!
The next time someone says that they can obtain salvation without receiving Jesus, just say, “yea right, and farmers who never plant seed can expect a wonderful bumper crop!