Read His Words Before Ours!
Jesus came to seek and save the lost.
Condemned by the Pharisees (the self-righteous and corrupt religious leaders of His time) for dining with sinners, He said His mission was to save those very sinners.
His heart was for their rescue!
In response to the same accusation, Jesus said,
“It is not those who are well who need a doctor, but those who are sick.
I didn’t come to call the righteous, but the sinners.” (Mark 2:17)
Jesus proved His mission again when, nailed naked to a perpetrator’s cross,
He prayed for God to forgive His killers.
In like manner, the apostle Paul committed his life to the ministry of preaching the gospel to save the lost. His love for Jesus compelled him to give up everything to his advantage and do what Jesus was passionate about. Paul even said he considered his life of no account except to testify to the gospel of the grace of God. (Acts 20:24)
Paul described the gospel as the fragrance of the knowledge of Jesus Christ, and himself as the means through which it is spread. For those who believe, the gospel is the aroma of life leading to life, but to those who reject, it is the aroma of death leading to death. (2 Corinthians 2:15-16) The same gospel which gives life to those who believe stands as a judgment to those who reject it. Scripture says he who believes in the Son of God will not be condemned, but he who does not believe is condemned already. (John 3:18) Whoever has not put his faith in Christ is considered lost.
Paul was not deterred from preaching the gospel, though many rejected it. He used every means to make the gospel known to and accepted by those who were lost. He said he became “all things to all people, so that I may by every possible means save some.” (1 Corinthians 9:22)
In his words, we see a deep sense of urgency in praying for. and ministering to, the lost. He recognized God desires all to know the vast richness of knowing and experiencing Christ as Savior. Therefore, Paul seized every opportunity he had to preach to, and pray for, the lost. Additionally, when he wrote to the churches, he called other believers to pray alongside him.
Paul described how his heart longed for his Jewish brothers and sisters to repent and be rescued, he even wished he could be accursed from Christ for their sake if it were possible! (Romans 9:1-5) He prayed fervently for their salvation, despite the fact that they were the very people persecuting him.
Studying the passion Paul had for the salvation of the lost, I was moved to tears.
I realized I have not given the Gospel the commitment it deserves.
I must confess my concern had only been for my family members. I hardly prayed for outsiders; the best I could do for them was my little contribution for the work of missions. But the fact that someone somewhere could die without Christ
should be a matter of great concern to me.
Every believer should carry an attitude of great concern toward the lost. We may not have the opportunity to travel round the world to preach the gospel, but we can share the hope of the gospel with those in our own communities!
The gospel is an issue of life or death,
an eternity in heaven or in hell.
How would it be if Christ returns, or any of our loved ones die in their sin, without us making any effort for their salvation by sharing Jesus?!
Imagine the pain and sorrow we would feel.
We have a duty not only to be involved in missions,
but to pray earnestly for the salvation of the lost.
Praying for the lost can never be over-emphasized; Jesus Himself asked His disciples to pray earnestly for the Lord of harvest to send laborers into His harvest. (Matthew 9:38) In like manner, the apostles prayed for boldness to declare God’s word. (Acts 4:29) Paul urged Timothy to intercede in prayer for all people, including kings and those in authority, because God desires for all people to be saved and come to the knowledge of the truth. (1Timothy 2:1-4)
Not only does God desire everyone to be saved,
but He calls us to join with Him on His mission of sharing this beautiful gospel overflowing with hope and love. (Matthew 28:18-20)
We confidently know our prayers matter for the salvation of the lost.
Therefore, the thought of the reality of hell for unsaved souls should drive us to our knees to pray for the lost with fervency.
Who will you pray for?
Embracing God’s fullness in our lives is rooted in scripture and memorizing His word is vital to our continued growth and depth with Jesus. Tap and hold from your mobile device to download this week’s verse and make it your phone’s lockscreen!