Bruce Collins, Evangelist

The personal website of Bruce Collins

The Main Thing!

Meditation for the week of February 5, 2012

Galatians 1:8  But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed.

Preaching an accurate faithful Gospel is important to the Lord and it needs to be important to us.  When we preach the Gospel we are dealing with the destinies of people for eternity.  Who would want to mislead anyone on that that important matter?  When we talk about the Gospel, we know we are talking about Good News.  Sometimes we use the word to include all or most of the doctrines of the Bible and sometimes we limit the term to the need to trust in the death, burial and resurrection of the Lord Jesus to be saved for eternity.  Whether we use the term in a broad sense or in a narrow sense, the end result is the same—we are preaching about the Lord Jesus Christ.  But if who are preaching the Gospel are all preaching the same Gospel. why does what I hear today often seem so strange to me?

Last week I was in a Chinese Restaurant in a mall when I heard a lady at the counter say, “I’ve lost my money, I can’t pay for this!”   She had a young girl with her and while I know that some people are scammers, trying to get a free meal when they really could pay for it, I decided to go and pay for the woman’s meals.  I thought that if she was scamming the owner or me, that was her problem, not mine.  At least the girl would get something to eat.  The owner was surprised when I offered to pay but added an extra egg roll for the two of them when he realized I was serious.  The women asked me my name and I told her.  Then I told her that I had something that I wanted to give her and I went back to my table and found a printed copy of how I came to trust the Lord and gave it to her.  When I did she exclaimed, “Are you a Christian?”  I said, “Yes.”  She said, “So am I.”  And she proceeded to tell me how she had trusted the Lord.  She volunteered the information, I didn’t ask for it.  She said she had been alone and “down” and didn’t think it was possible for even the Lord Jesus to help her.  But she began to think about how the Father had said at the Lord’s baptism, “This is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased!”   She then thought that if the Father was pleased with His Son, she could be too.  And she trusted Him right there. 

I was surprised because she voluntarily told me her story about how she was saved and people today seldom do that.  If they do tell their stories, the story is all about them and their decisions and their prayers and I don’t hear much about the Lord.  This woman realized she was “lost” before she was saved.  Again, that is something I don’t hear very often today. 

She invited herself and her daughter to sit with me while she ate and we had a nice discussion.  I found out that this stranger that I had decided to help had been baptized by my own brother—she was friends with a lot of people that I knew though I didn’t know her.  It sounded like she had had a rather hard life, but she couldn’t forget what the Lord had done for her.  She didn’t tell me about what she had done for the Lord, she told me about what the Lord had done for her. 

Today, I am told that the Gospel is a ten minute or less message.  And yes, the basic Gospel message is in John 3:16 which can certainly be quoted in less than five minutes.  But the Gospel is not an afterthought, the Gospel is the main thing.  Romans, the explanation of the Gospel to the Gentiles, and Hebrews, the explanation of the Gospel to the Jews, are the longest epistles in the new testament and have some of the most controversial passages.  The Gospel involves misunderstood concepts about sin, eternal punishment, heaven, repentance,  faith, the new birth, law and grace, and eternal security,  The work of the Holy Spirit in bringing people to the Savior is often neglected.  I don’t understand why when the Gospel is the main thing, we spend so little time teaching and preaching and explaining it.   The unsaved need it, the newly saved need it, those away from the Lord need it, and the saved should rejoice in it.   Furthermore, if the story of our conversions is the main Gospel message that we can share with others, why do we seem so reluctant to do so?

The Lord blessed me that day when I decided to pay for that ladies meal.  I found someone who talked the same spiritual language that I talked.  In a day of total religious confusion, her testimony was extremely refreshing.

Bruce Collins

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