Tuesday, September 6, 2016

God Speaks Clearly To Every Person...Some Listen, Most Don't

There are basically just two kinds of spiritual orientation in people prior to faith and Christian conversion ... light and darkness. The children of light are and have been forever known to God and are God conscious. "Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness." 1 Thess. 5:5. God knows and has eternally known who these future people would one day be and their future acceptance of His light.

The children of darkness are not God conscious. He has also always known the children of darkness and disobedience would, in their lifetime, reject Him. Since He has always known all of their choices, faith or lack of it, the children of light have always been known as His "elect", His "chosen" and His "children". The children of light will, in their lifetimes, see, hear and receive the three clear, testimonies of God's primary witnesses of Himself as the universal Creator God.

The first of these three is Natural Creation itself. the second is the Holy Scriptures. The third is God's Holy Spirit. Natural creation is physically and emotionally perceived by all of our human senses, by both the children of light and the children of darkness. So, all human beings are "without excuse" if they reject the fact of an obvious Creator God. "For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness; Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto themFor the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools.... 1Thess.18-22.

The children of light are willingly drawn to the Creator by the witness of Natural Creation's majesty, beauty and complexity, to seek this Creator God of the Natural Universe, and find peace with Him and to know Him spiritually....

This brings us to the testimony of God's second clear witness... the Holy Bible. Of all the world's written history, millions of books and writings, there is only one that reveals the true Creator, His person, plan and divine will for all people. The very first message of God in the Bible is the confirmation of the one true God as Creator of heaven and earth and all living things, including people... in His image and likeness. "In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth." Gen.1:1. The Bible then gives us a history of humanity from its creation to its fall, God's planned redemption by His Son, Messiah (Christ), His prophets, His purpose, His will, His church, the end times, and final judgment, heaven and hell. The Bible, the Holy Scriptures are also called the "word of God" and "the seed of the sower"...."Who hath ears to hear, let him hear. And the disciples came, and said unto him, Why speakest thou unto them in parables? He answered and said unto them, Because it is given unto you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not given. .... Therefore speak I to them in parables: because they seeing see not; and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand..... For this people's heart is waxed gross and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes they have closed; lest at any time they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears .... and should understand with their heart, and should be converted .... But blessed are your eyes, for they see: and your ears, for they hear.... Hear ye therefore the parable of the sower. When any one heareth the word of the kingdom, and understandeth it not, then cometh the wicked one (Satan) , and catcheth away that which was sown in his heart....." Matt.13:9-19.

Here are two phrases which are key to the children of darkness rejecting the light with the consequence of being left in their darkness."... their eyes they have closed ...." "...they seeing see not; and hearing they hear not...." It is they who have closed their own eyes to God and His light ... His truth and God has always known that is what they would do.

 The third and last witness, after Natural Creation and the Biblical confirmations of the reality of a supremely intelligent Creator, God, is His Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit, in conjunction with the Creation, convinces every person born .... of the of the truth of God as Creator. "(John the Baptist) came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all men through him might believe....That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world." John 1:7&9.  Natural Creation and the Holy Spirit enlighten "all men"  and "every (human) that comes into the world" sufficiently, that we and the universe were created by the one and only Creator.... God. Some see and listen, some do not. The Holy Spirit convicts and convinces every human of their guilt of sin, their need for righteousness and the consequences of impending judgment. Jesus said it in John 16:7-11."I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter (Holy Spirit) will not come unto you ... I will send him unto you. And when he is come, he will re prove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgmentOf sin, because they believe not on me; Of righteousness, because I go to my Father, and ye see me no more; Of judgment, because the prince of this world is judged." 

Jesus also warned us that "...Many are called, but few are chosen. Matt.22:14
Every person is called by God's glorious creation, or Bible preaching, teaching or Christian's testimony... by the Holy Spirit. But most reject those witnesses. Why? For many reasons. If they acknowledge the reality of God, it means they must cast aside inherited religion, repent of the sins they cling to, and deal with disapproving family and friends. They know such a God would require them to seek Him and submit to his will and purpose for them, and yield to His changes to their lives. So, "Many are called"... but few respond to God's call, repent, and accept His Son, Jesus and yield to His will. And, only those few are "chosen".

The Apostle Paul speaks of God's children of light as "the elect" before the fact of their salvation, but whom God has always known would believe as a result of Paul's preaching and the work of the Holy Spirit in their lives .... in God's own timing. "Therefore I endure all things for the elect's sakes, that they may also obtain the salvation which is in Christ Jesus with eternal glory." 2 Tim.2:10. 

When I was a young preacher in seminary in the early 1950s, an old (75-85) Japanese pastor, who had founded many churches and several Bible schools, in Japan, gave us this testimony ... When he was a young man, he had many doubts about his family's and Japan's traditional religions. When he considered nature, the stars, the miracle of life, the 5 senses, and the human brain, he knew that the stone god, Buda, or his ancestors did not create this universe. He also knew it couldn't have happened accidentally by evolution. Therefore, it must have been created somehow. So, he felt compelled to discover who the intelligent Creator of all things was. He climbed a high mountain near his home and sat down and prayed to this unknown God all of a day and night for this true God to reveal Himself unto him. but, he left the mountain with just one small impression ... that he must leave home and go out looking for his Creator.

He walked many miles across Japan and finally found himself in Tokyo on a street of many shops, walking slowly along studying each shop and praying for God to reveal Himself. As he passed one shop, he heard a man's voice coming from it ... reading from a black covered book ... aloud. Instantly he knew the words were the word of God speaking to him. "What book is that?" he asked. To which the man said, "The Holy Bible, the word of God". This young seeker knew at once it was true and the Spirit of this man's God brought him to that shop, convinced him and converted him to Christ. God's Holy Spirit knows who and where every seeking sinner, every witnessing Christian and every Bible is ... and how to bring them together.

"For as I passed by, and beheld your devotions, I found an altar with this inscription, TO THE UNKNOWN GOD. Whom therefore ye ignorantly worship, him declare I unto you." Acts 17:23. The Master's master plan. RB