Sunday, November 11, 2007

Sunday Sermon


The AJ Thomas said...

57:56 - Let's pray before I say anything else
55:31 - actually gets around to praying. Yim ein the middle spent pointing.

Maybe someday I'll listen to the rest.

regan said...

I listened to some of it (don't have an hour to spare), but I disagree with his main point. There's controversy about whether or not a person can be "saved" and not following Jesus. I believe scripture teaches that it is through repentance and faith that a person is saved, and what he does after that has no effect on his salvation. It does, however, have a tremendous effect on his relationship with God, the church, and the people around him. God will move to chastise a person if he continues to ignore God's leading. I do agree that there are many people who think they are OK because they go to church/prayed a prayer/are a good person, and these people will go to hell if they have never experienced repentence of sin and faith in Christ. I also agree that American Christians in general are very worldly and displeasing to God (including myself more often than I would like).

matthew said...

I generally agree with the sermon, though you could take the ideas too far. I don't think he was saying repentance and faith aren't enough, I think he was saying repentance and faith need to be genuine to be enough. Repentance isn't just a 'sorry' prayer. It's a 180.

regan said...

Yes, but is it possible to have a genuine 180 this year, and next year go back to the way you used to be? In other words, does a saved person always behave like a saved person should, or can he become someone who doesn't even resemble Christ at all?

Sorry to keep this going, but I'm genuinely interested in your thoughts.

matthew said...

No problem, I love the interaction :)

Certainly a saved person doesn't always behave as a saved person should. I think the point of the sermon, to which I agree, is that many American Christians have shown little to NOTHING as evidence of a GENUINE conversion.

It's one thing to struggle with Christ-likeness. It's a completely other thing to NOT struggle with Non-Christ-likeness. In other words, if someone prays the 'sinners prayer' and shows virtually no change in lifestyle and not even a consistent DESIRE to change, their 'conversion' experience is, to be blunt, extremely doubtful. Their 'repentance' was just a momentary 'sorry.'

I think the sermon was directed at nominal Christians. If our stats are correct, something like 80% of Americans call themselves Christians. I think it's evident to all that this is not reality. Let's just guess than 20% of Americans truly are Christians. I don't think the preacher was rebuking the 20% at all, I think he was trying to wake up the nominal Christians.

Regan said...

I get it... it goes back to examine yourself and see if you're in the faith. If you examine yourself and don't know-- that's a problem. I have no issue with that. AND I believe that if someone has had that heart change that the Lord will continually be working in their lives to form the image of Christ in them. Rebellion brings chastisement, as the scripture says, if you aren't chastised, you're a bastard and not a son. (KJV language, sorry.)

But I think you're right, that only a small percentage of those who claim "Christian" have really had a life-changing experience of faith. And I can see how repentance has been watered out of the Gospel as something that's almost not necessary because God accepts people just the way they are, and doesn't ask them to change. (tongue in cheek)

Still, his position seems a little close to those I've heard who say, "If you don't live it, you don't have it." I disagree with that idea because that is just working for your salvation stated another way.

OK, I'm done. I appreciate your comments on my blog. They were helpful.