Bruce Collins, Evangelist

The personal website of Bruce Collins

How FEW Really Find the Truth?

Meditation for the week of January 9, 2011

Genesis 18:23-24 And Abraham came near and said, "Would You also destroy the righteous with the wicked? "Suppose there were fifty righteous within the city; would You also destroy the place and not spare it for the fifty righteous that were in it?
Genesis 18:32 Then he said, "Let not the Lord be angry, and I will speak but once more: Suppose ten should be found there?" And He said, "I will not destroy it for the sake of ten."

Matthew 7:14 deals with a broad way that most are traveling.  It is usually a popular road.  Sometimes it is an immoral road.  Sometimes it is the the road of the self-righteous who have tried to make God “owe” them salvation by their good works.  Sometimes it is the road of the foolish who simply will not allow themselves to be accountable to any authority other than themselves.  We know that even though we live in a world where there is a lot of lip service given to Christianity and to the worship of the Lord Jesus, most people have no concept of what it means to be “born again.”  Many “Christians” do not have a trusting relationship with this God who has been made known to us through the Lord Jesus.  Ultimately, we either believe what we “think” is right, or we believe what God says in the Bible.  Most of us would like to think that there are many people who really believe in the Bible and in the message of the Bible.  We would like to believe that even though many of our acquaintances seem to have very little understanding of the Bible and they seem to have very little interest in the worship of the Lord, that they are still  ‘believers.”  But are they?  We would like to think that our close relatives will all one day be in heaven, but will they?

Abraham found out how few “few” really is.  He had pleaded for the Lord to spare the city of Sodom where his nephew Lot and Lot’s family lived.  He had started out pleading for the Lord to spare the city if there were fifty righteous in the city, and he stopped pleading when he got down to ten.  Now Lot and his family should have been  righteous since they were Abraham’s close relatives.  Lot had two single daughters and a wife. So that was four people in the city who should have been righteous.  He had two sons-in-law who had married his daughters.  That was four people. He had sons.  That was at least two people.  Adding up the numbers, there should have been ten righteous people in that city (Genesis 19:12-14).  How Abraham’s heart must have been broken when he went out early in the morning and saw the destruction of Sodom (Genesis 19:27-28).  Even though God was gracious and Lot was spared, there were not ten righteous people in the city or it would have been spared.   Lot’s family simply had not believed in the Lord that Abraham worshiped.  They likely knew all about Abraham’s call out of the pagan system of the Chaldean’s.  They likely knew about the altars that Abraham had built.  They must have had every reason to believe in Abraham’s God, but THEY DIDN’T!  I am sure that Abraham was surprised to find out that his faith was not the faith of his nephew Lot’s family.  Lot was a righteous man even though he doesn’t appear very righteous.  It takes the new testament to assure us that he was a true believer (2 Peter 2:7). 

We should never assume, as Abraham seemed to do, that those  who are close to us are all saved.  While we can’t read hearts and should accept those who say they believe in the Lord as true believers, we should still preach the Gospel to them so that the Lord can work in their hearts if that is needed.   We should never assume that those who know the Gospel, actually know the Lord that the Good News is all about.  We should continue to pray and preach to those we love even when they get frustrated with us and tell us that they already “know” all of the things we are preaching.  One of the evidences of a true faith is that a believer never finds the Gospel message to be old and stale.  The unsaved NEED to hear it and the saved SHOULD LOVE to hear it.  I personally am convicted that we need to make sure that we keep preaching this message to the saved and unsaved alike.  Unless we do that, we may find ourselves surprised one day to find out that those we were “sure” were saved simply were not. 

The unsaved will not be able to blame those who are saved for missing out on this great salvation.  Every person is personally responsible for what they do with Christ.  However, since faith comes by hearing the Word of God preached (Romans 10:17), I personally am going to continue preaching the Gospel wherever and whenever I have opportunity.  I intend to preach it publicly as a herald of good news, and I intend to preach it privately to those who will listen.  At times, I may preach it as a family truth that I have been privileged to believe rather than as a confrontational message to the unsaved.  But preach it, I will.   Just because we think people are saved is no reason to quit preaching the Gospel to them.  We, like Abraham, just may be wrong.

Bruce Collins

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