Search This Blog

Saturday, September 10, 2011

The Light Shines in the Darkness

It is a Saturday morning with no clouds in sight. My house has no power. I am sitting on my deck. I can’t let my dog outside because we have an invisible fence. No power means no fence.
It wasn’t so many years ago that no one had electrical power. They lit their lamps at night. They told stories, played games or instruments for entertainment. They gathered their food and wood to cook on their wood stoves.
What would they think if they were suddenly transported to the days of air conditioning, television, microwave ovens and internet? They may not have believed it was possible until they saw it for themselves.
Do you think this is like explaining the taste of chocolate to someone who has never had it? Imagine making radio contact with someone from a galaxy far away. Their universal translator enables communication but chocolate doesn’t exist on their world. You tell them how good it is but without tasting they will never know. They may try to live on your testimony but it will always be second hand. They will never know because they cannot taste chocolate. You can’t even say that it tastes like something else for you don’t know what things taste like on their world.
This must be what it is like for those who do not know Jesus. They hear the testimony of others. They put it in terms they already know. They will interpret it as superstition if they choose not to taste. Believing in Jesus is so far outside of the logic box of some people. It is a world apart from where they are.
I believe it would be natural for unbelievers to oppose what they believe to be superstition. I oppose superstitions; why shouldn’t they? Superstitions hold people back from the truth. Superstitions ultimately keep people from God.
But it is impossible to overcome something that has been experienced. Life comes into the believer. It is light which reveals things as they really are. It comes from a power that cannot be lost.
Telling people about Jesus is a daunting task. It is telling them of Someone that cannot be known by their mere senses. It is believing in Someone before meeting Him. It is an introduction that steps over the line from knowing about to actually knowing the Person.
So, how do I let others know He is real? I tell them that they must ask Him in. Those who truly ask have nothing to fear. Nothing will happen if He is not real. I am confident that He is. You merely have to taste.
John 1:3-5 (NIV) 
3 Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. 4 In him was life, and that life was the light of men. 5 The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood it. 

1 comment:

Anthony Chia said...

This is the thing I still believe I would do/say to an non-believer: I would share the gospel with the person, and if he is NOT ready to accept Jesus as his personal Lord and Savior, to "challenge" him to let God "touch" him by going to a good church for services without break (if possible) for a period of (say) 10 weeks. If he does NOT "feel" touched, he can leave the matter for a season. I normally would tell the person that one ought to seriously give himself the chance of being "associated" with God in one's lifetime. There are only a few things that almost everyone around the world universally does: people acquire knowledge (through formal schooling or otherwise), do something useful with his/her working life (vocation), try to settle down to have a life-partner and raise a family, and in addition, seek out the issue of "association" with God (I believe there is key-hole shaped "God" in us all, that some of us fail to realise or just ignored it, that need to have the key).

I would tell the non-believer that he can look across time, even into ancient of times, and he can look across continents to all the nations of the world, and they would find men's attempts at associating with God. I would share that as a young overseas Chinese man, many years back, through Muslim literature, I was told there were millions and millions of Muslims in parts of China; how to me, it was a "revelation" that even in China, a huge Chinese country, with so many Chinese "religions", still there would be Chinese embracing the Muslim faith, against the "culture" of their nation - pointing, truly, any man/woman should seriously look at this dimension of life, at some point in his/her lifetime, just as he/she would look at acquiring knowledge, engage in vocation, be married and raise a family (There are of course, still people who, for various reasons {but that there are reasons, implied that they have considered} no longer want to address such issues of life). I would suggest that maybe, it is opportune time to confront the issue of God seriously, and devote a small part of his/her life, going to a place (a church service) where the Word of God is being released (why a place where Word of God is being released? It is because principally, to give the Holy Spirit the most direct means to "touch" the person). I normally would tell the person, that if he has been sincere in seeking to associate with Him, and if at the end of the period, God did NOT touch him, he could go on with his life, and I would respect his wishes that I would NOT raise the subject with him, now and then.

This is one way to address a non-believer who feel he is NOT particularly thinking of entering into a faith, and he claims he is doing fine (without "problems").

Of course, you can still follow him/her through, even if he/she does NOT take up your challenge, to wait for other opportune time(s) for sharing again or "bringing him" into the drawing of God for his/her life.

Often, people are NOT willing to say the Sinner Prayer, to cross the line, unless they are ready; and generally, we do NOT tell people (I am NOT implying Ps Prentis is telling we do that) to try Jesus by entering into the Covenant. Saying of the Sinner Prayer is entering into the Covenant, and it cannot be taken lightly, just like we would NOT enter into a contract that is life and death rashly or on a "try-try" basis; rather we would allow the other party (Holy Spirit) to "convince" us.

God's desire is that none should perish (1 Tim 2:4). Work with God to ease God's drawing of the person into His glorious Kingdom.