Jesus spoke in parables ..1 Corinthians 1:27
"27But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty;"
Often times, He spoke in ways that left the person to decide for themselves. I'm not so sure He asked things in such a way that there would be a 'right or wrong' answer, but rather He was looking into our hearts and minds and challenging us to think outside the box. He has been challenging our theology since time began.
So here's the challenge he asked me today. Be very careful to think and pray before you answer...
"You Be the Judge"
A man of religion, clothed in a suit, shoes shined just right. He abstains from 'the world' and all it's pleasures. His hair is cut short, above the collar. He never uses inappropriate words, and speaks with eloquence. He has memorized most scripture. He attended 6 years of Bible college and has his doctorate of theology from his denomination. He goes to church, invites people to church, feeds the poor, and helps the widows. He stands on the street corner with a sign that says 'Repent or burn' He points to the sinners and reminds them of their sin. He preaches that all are born in sin. This sin comes from the eating of the forbidden tree. We are all born with this knowledge of good and evil.
WE ALREADY KNOW BETTER
We already KNOW what we do is good or evil. Some just flat out don't care about it, but they know.
Another man sits in the bar. He drinks every night after begging for money on the street corner. After he stumbles out of the bar at night, he is beaten up and left for dead on the sidewalk.
The man of religion walks by. He gets out a soap box and stands above the beaten, drunk man. He starts preaching vehemently about sin. He points out the man's drunkenness, poverty, and shames him in front of the whole crowd that has exited the bar to see the commotion. He calls him lazy and rebellious. He tells him that his addiction to alcohol is filthy. He continues to tell the man that God hates his drunkenness and that he is going to hell for ever to be tormented as his punishment for sin.
But it's not the sin of drinking that condemns him. It was Adam that brought us the condemnation by eating of the tree many years ago.
The drunk beaten man lays there, bloody, robbed, and destitute... already humiliated by his own actions. Now he is depressed, isolated, and condemned by the religious man. He cries. He feels so low that he is scared to even speak. So he crawls away from the preacher, ashamed to even look him in the eyes.
The preacher then tries to tell him that Jesus died for him, but the man is now so depressed that he can't even begin to think about Jesus and what he did for him. He is confused. Is he condemned for his drinking or because of Adam? Was it Adam's sin that made him a sinner or his drinking?
As in Adam all die. Because of Adam we are all born into sin. So if the man who got drunk is a sinner, it is because of Adam that he is a sinner, not his alcoholism. Here's where the true gospel comes into play...
It is not the message the religious man preached. You see the religious man has it backwards. The drunk man's alcoholism is a symptom of Adam. Convincing the drunk man that he is a drunk is ludicrous. He ALREADY KNOWS HE'S a DRUNK. What he needs to know is that although Adam brought sin to all mankind, Jesus brought redemption to all mankind.
Jesus came NOT into the world to CONDEMN THEM, but to SAVE THEM. So why is the modern day preacher preaching condemnation to the world, when even Jesus didn't?
Jesus saves. Not condemns.
John 3:17, "For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved"
He enters the scene and looks at the religious preacher and says to him, "If you are without sin, continue to cast the stones." Will the religious man continue to throw stones at people who are BORN in Adam? Or will he walk away realizing he is no better than the drunk man?
He then looks at the drunk man and says, "Where are your accusers? I do not condemn you. I have saved you. Go in peace. As in Adam all die, but through me ALL shall me made alive. Rise up and walk free, never to sin again. Your sins are forgiven you."
Will the man ever get drunk again? Will he continue to walk outside of God's commands and invite others to join him? Possibly...
Will the religious man continue to condemn people? Will he continue to condemn and invite others to spread condemnation? Possibly....
Who will be in the kingdom in the life-after?
You be the Judge.
Where is the flaw in this story?
Where is the flaw in this story?