Question: What is the picture of God many people have?
Unfortunately, for far too many, the answer is “God hates you because you are a sinner!" That is too often the case, certainly in our own country.
"The church won’t accept you because you don’t measure up. You are just not good enough! If you could get good enough, then maybe the church will accept you."
Far too many have a corrupted view of God. They think God is always angry with them.
In one respect, they are right. We are sinners (Romans 3:23) and God cannot accept sin. In fact, He hates sin!
But the Good News of the Gospel is that God loves us! He loves us so much He sent His only Son to the cross to suffer the punishment we deserve. Jesus did not come to condemn us in our sin. He came that we might be saved from our sin (John 3:16-17).
If you know Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, you are discovering the incredible, awesome love He has for us (Romans 8:31-39). It is now your responsibility and calling to share that wonderful message of love, salvation, forgiveness, and so much more with others.
We are called to love people! When you love people, you go around their objections; you bypass their arguments. When you love people and share the Good News of what Jesus has done for them, you change their picture of God - from hate to love.
So be available to share the Good News with people you meet. They might be "down and out" or "up and out" but they have a need for hope that only Jesus can give.
Share the story of how you met Jesus and how your life has changed. People might argue with your theology and beliefs but they can’t argue with your experience. They can't dispute the change that has happened in your life.
Have compassion on people in need. Sadly, people feel rejected by the church, but they were drawn to Jesus. He showed love to a disgraced immoral woman (John 4), an unscrupulous tax collector (Luke 19), a dying thief on a cross (Luke 23:39-43) and their lives were changed for eternity. He had compassion on the multitudes (Matthew 9:35-38) and they flocked to Him. What a difference!
Jesus calls us to Go (Matthew 28:18-20)! As many have noted, it is the Great Commission, not the Great Suggestion.
Are you serious about the Great Commission? Are you personally going to people who are nearby? Are you supporting (with prayer and finances) those who are willing to go to people far away?
Thankfully, someone shared the Good News of the Gospel with you and me and we are eternally grateful. Now it's time for us to share it with others!