More Counseling With Others in the Good News of Jesus, Part 2

Someone wrote me recently asking a few questions about the struggles they face trying to communicate the Gospel with others. I thought you might be interested in how I responded even as you form your own creative responses in participation with Jesus as He proclaims His Good News over others in every kind of situation! This post will only cover question number two. [Sentences have been restructured to grant anonymity and add clarity]

Question 2 “Also is there any advice on the best way to answer the question that is often asked or thought, “If God has saved all of humanity, why is there so much evil behavior extant in the world?.”

My Response: Getting at the heart of this question, in the Light of Jesus Christ, is easier than we might at first suppose, even though the real answer is as complex as the Son being both God and Man in the Person of Jesus, and our real lives being hidden in His (Col 3:1-4). You can respond to this question, among other believers, with a question: “I’ll answer this question for you if you will answer one for me. If God has saved you, why do you still participate in sinful thoughts and behaviors?” Obviously if they say they are not a sinner who continually sins, we and they know they are not telling the truth or trusting the Gospel! (I John 1:5-10) If they say “I do, but at least I ask for forgiveness!” You can speak out of the Gospel and say, “Well, even if we ask for forgiveness, isn’t our request still filled with sin, since we, the sinner, are the one asking for it? Aren’t we really still dependent upon Jesus asking for, and being, forgiveness in our place and on our behalf, which He did for everyone when, as the Son of God he became human and also asked “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing?” I hope you can see the paradoxical point the Gospel drives us to with this kind of questioning! It is possible to be one thing in the Person of Jesus, and because of our distinction, to be and do another thing. This is what Paul is wrestling with in Romans 7:14-25!

I do want to add that you should NEVER EVER REALLY respond trying to “prove” the Truth of the Gospel to others! You should primarily express what YOU believe and simply be a witness to Christ and His shared Faith with us! Of course there are scriptures you can point to about God not counting anyone’s transgressions against them (2 Cor 5:19), and love covering a multitude of sins (1 Peter 4:8), BUT, if you are dealing with someone who does not understand these basic things, you are really dealing with someone as blind as the persons they are condemning and you will have to trust Christ to help them see in His own time and way.

Using a relational example, you could speak about how children can be raised in a loving environment and still disobey their parents, and yet they are still their parents’ child, and perhaps even safe in their parents’ home, care, and beds. Disobedience happens because of our distinction, regardless of the goodness of God and others. Of course, there are also negative consequences of messed up and grievous relationships. We should all be encouraged to pray for Jesus’ enemies, along with Christ, and see the world become who and what it already is in Jesus in His time, grace and Second Coming!

~Timothy J. Brassell

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