Once again the winter coolness had kept the people away from the city. But, this still did not deter the gospel preaching. Tonight we had close to 25 people come out on team, so everywhere you went someone was sharing the gospel of Christ.
I didn’t preach tonight, however, I did manage to get a good conversation. While I was standing in the middle of the mall having a yarn to Rick Barnard I head “JOSH!” I turned to see a smartly dressed young man and his girlfriend. I looked at his face and something began to jog in my memory. I had met this man before, and I had spoken to him. The man looked at me and said, “You don’t remember? It’s me Gabriel, I went to college with you!” Then it clicked, I had spent my first semester at Bible college with him, but he had left mid-semester and became an apostate.
I was glad to see him again, since I hadn’t a chance to speak to him in the past two years. We caught up on what was happening, he introduced me to his girlfriend and I told him about how I am getting married. But, after the small talk had finished we turned to discussing the things of God. I wanted to know why he had rejected the Bible and why he was now a professing agnostic.
He spoke about how the Bible and science clash, but when pressed he couldn’t really elaborate how that was so. Then he went internal, and spoke about theology and how because of theology he couldn’t hold the Bible to be true. One of the issues he struggled with is the fact that God is good, yet will send people to hell. This objection is very common so I explained to him about the nature of man and also the nature of God. How goodness is shown in punishing evil. He then jumped to another theology, “Why did God create Adam and Eve if He knew they would fall?” Now in standard evangelical squishiness the standard answer would be “Because God wants relationship with you.” I reject such a notion outright. The gospel and redemption is not about you, it is about God. I explained to Gabriel about how God gets the glory because of the fall, since man is dead in sin God will get the glory for judging that man or by saving the man. Everything revolves around the glory of God.
Gabriel said he had never heard such things before, and he seemed intrigued. We then spoke about saving faith, and since I am an unashamed Calvinist (a nick name for the Doctrines of Grace), I explained that salvation is all a work of God and how God must elect someone for them to come to faith.
He seemed shocked, he arguments against Christianity was against the modern day theology (or lack thereof), but when confronted with a high view of God, and the God who is Sovereign over all things, Gabriel seemed to be at a loss.
While I am aware Gabriel may well read this, I am saying nothing in this blog, that I haven’t already said to him. One thing I appreciate about Gabriel is that you can be blunt to him, yet he won’t get offended. So Gabriel if you are reading this, even though your sins have separated you from God, God Himself, has provided Christ to die for sinners and to rise again, so if you would humble yourself and cry out to God for mercy, He will come and forgive all your sins. Please mate, I beg of you, “Look to Jesus Christ and be saved!”
For the others reading this, please take a moment now to pray for Gabriel, pray that God would show mercy to him and grant him repentance and faith.
My heart was broken after speaking to Gabriel. Firstly, because I had seen one walk away from the faith. Secondly, because of the dodgy theology that pervades our church today we have many people who now discount Christianity.
My prayer is that God would bring a resurgence of Biblical theology. While, many will disagree with me, I think the safest way to have strong churches devoid of liberalism is to return to the five points of Calvinism. Let us preach and teach these five great truths of salvation.
Soli Deo Gloria!
Brisbane Team (Night) (QLD)
Meets every Saturday night in King George Square 7-10pm.
Brisbane Team (Day) (QLD)
Meets Wednesday afternoons 1-5pm in King George Square (near Adelaide St crossing).
Contact Ryan Hemelaar for more information.