Why Be Spiritual When
Carnal Christians Go To Heaven Too?
By Elmer G. Klassen
Because no one really knows if they do. There is reason to doubt the destiny of worldly people. No one knows for sure if worldly people are Christians. Disobedient people do not have assurance of their salvation from sin in their hearts because Christians who resist or grieve the Holy Spirit cannot be sure what spirit is teaching and instructing them. Their destiny remains a mystery.
God does not give confidence in Him and assurance of eternal life to disobedient people. The preaching of a positive theology cannot convince a sinful heart of deliverance from sin. Positive thinking is only positive when preceded by repentance, the rejection of the sinful nature and the receiving of God’s Spirit for salvation. Only the Holy Spirit can give assurance of sins forgiven and promise a positive future. The Spirit of sonship is given to those who live in accordance with the Spirit.
“Those who live according to the sinful nature have their minds set on what that nature desires; but those who live in accordance with the spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires. The mind of sinful man is death, but the mind controlled by the Sprit is life and peace; the sinful mind is hostile to God. It does not submit to God’s law, nor can it do so. Those controlled by the sinful nature cannot please God.
“If you live according to the sinful nature, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live, because those who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship. The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children” (Romans 8:5-8; 13-16).
It is true that the Apostle Paul had to write to the Corinthians as unto carnals because they were yet babes in Christ. He fed them “with milk, and not with meat” for a longer period of time than thought necessary and therefore was concerned for their spiritual welfare.
Christians normally do not continue to be babes in Christ if they have had a proper birth. Something is drastically wrong when no growth is witnessed in the Christian life. No growth either signifies serious trouble at birth or no birth at all. The future of carnal Christian will be taken seriously by spiritual Christians because they question the destiny of worldly people. They fear that they may be hypocrites.
It is difficult to find Scriptures that guarantee salvation for the unrepentant. Major portions of the Bible are a warning to unrepentant people who claim to belong to God. Unless Bible reading Christians see a change of rulership in the heart of worldly people they will be concerned for the destiny of their souls. They will reject the criticism of their doubting the salvation of others as being judgmental. God puts this concern in their hearts. When repentance has not resulted sooner or later in the turning from self-rule to the rulership of the Master who rules from within there will always be a concern for them by spiritual Christians. This concern is the Holy Spirit working in God’s people as they pray for revival.
We have just revised and published in magazine format Andrew Murray’s book, “Master’s Indwelling,” for Christians who lack faith for the Master’s reign within. Lack of faith for personal salvation or lack of faith in prayer for the salvation of others can be remedied only by letting God give us His Holy Spirit inspired prayer as He rules as Master within.
A study of past revivals teaches that revivals were a time when Christians prayed for genuine salvation of worldly friends. They were more concerned for the salvation of their souls than they were for their social well-being. They spent more time praying for their salvation than for the healing of their hurts which may be the result of unconfessed sin or no salvation at all. Praying for our hurts may distract us from the real need. Complaining Christians need, more than comfort, the assurance of sins forgiven. The revival in China at the beginning of this century began when complaining Baptist missionaries got saved.
The Bible never did offer comfort to suffering unrepentant Jews. Neither does the Bible promise salvation to unrepentant Gentiles. When Jesus was on earth He called the people to repent or else face the consequences. “Unless you repent, you too will all perish.”
On the day of Pentecost the Apostle Peter called to the people to repent. “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins.” No repentance, no salvation.
The Apostle Paul preached the same to Jews and Gentiles, “I preached that they should repent and turn to God and prove their repentance by their deeds.” (Acts 26:20). He warned them to repent and to prove they had done so. Christ’s message to the church is a call to repentance. He expects Christians to be overcomers in the power of the Holy Spirit. He has left us with no excuse to continue in sin. His promises of a bright future are to those who overcome. He has sent us the Holy Spirit for this purpose.
“Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest, and repent. Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with me. To him who overcomes, I will give the right to sit with me on my throne, just as I overcame and sat down with my Father on his throne” (Revelation 3:19-21).
The future revival will depend on the preaching of repentance to Christians. The churches have not heard a strong emphasis on the preaching of repentance since the ministry of Charles Finney in the 19th century. North America has also not had a nation changing revival since the ministry of Charles Finney. You may learn some of the principles of Finney’s understanding of revival in his book, “Lectures on Revivals, “ which we gladly mail free of charge to contributors to Herald of His Coming.
If you are praying for a nation changing revival you must be expecting changes in the churches. Revivals always bring changes. Not only are the hearts of Christians changed, there will be changes in how or where we preach salvation. We will discover that people in our church pews are needing salvation. Any church or mission that is not able to change in her way of doing things has lost her vision and her calling. Revival has always brought change, change in songs, change in reading habits and maybe change in Bible translations, change in anything that has to do with culture and with this present world. The best preparation for revival is to let the Master indwell and rule within. Changes will not bring revival, but revival will bring changes.
We encourage you to order Andrew Murray’s book, “Master’s Indwelling.” Let God change you. This book will be sent in magazine format free of charge to contributors to the Herald of His Coming.
Heralds for distribution are available as long as supplies last. Addresses of friends who will benefit from the reading of the Herald of His coming are now being accepted for sample mailing.
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