The Barrier of Indifference
The story is told that when William Jennings Bryan was asked to speak in front of a little congregation in West Virginia, he began by saying, “I have three points today. First, millions are dying and going to hell. Second, you people don’t give a damn. Third, some of you are more concerned that I said ‘damn’ than that millions are dying and going to hell.” We serve a God who sent His Son to seek and to save the lost, but it is easier for us to be more concerned with side issues than with what is close to the Father’s heart.
It is remarkable that within two years of conversion to Christianity, most believers have few, if any, non-Christian friends. Surveys taken in churches indicate that the longer a person is a believer, the fewer unbelieving friends he or she has. Often, the only people who are really trying to share their faith are the new converts, the babes in Christ. Sadly, the more mature and better-equipped Christians are not reaching out in the way they could and should.
I like to tell the tale of the airplane that had four people and only three parachutes. There was the pilot, a genius, a minister, and a Boy Scout. When the engine caught fire and the plane began to go down, the pilot ran out, grabbed one of the parachutes, and bailed out. The genius stood up and said, “I am the world’s smartest man! The world needs what I have to offer.” He grabbed one and jumped out, leaving the minister and the scout. The minister told the boy, “Your whole life is before you—take the last parachute.” The scout answered, “Don’t sweat it, mister—the world’s smartest man just bailed out with my backpack!” In a very real sense, the world is going down in flames, and people are putting their hope in the backpacks of works, merit, possessions, position, and power. But the gospel tells that the only true parachute is Jesus Christ.
We need to remember what is at stake. “He who has the Son has the life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have the life” (1 John 5:12). The stakes associated with the message we share are high, for they involve nothing less than people’s eternal destinies.
Taken from Ken Boa’s Handbook to Spiritual Growth
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