Decisions or Disciples: So often when we share the gospel, we’re more concerned about decisions than disciples. Obviously, we’re motivated by compassion for the lost, but we can easily rush the process of conviction and do more harm than good. The Holy Spirit must convict a person about sin and then implant a love for Christ in order for that person to actually repent and believe.
When we rush people toward decisions and artificial prayers, we do them an eternal disservice. A wise minister has suggested, “We lose thousands of people who are going to die and go to hell, thinking they are saved. And they’ve never been saved.” This is a very sobering thought, indeed.
“The Bible recognizes the reality of false faith. Demons have faith (James 2:19). Simon Magus had faith (Acts 8:13, 21-23). Many Jews who were impressed with Jesus’ miraculous power put their faith in him (John 2:23-25). But the Bible teaches that none of these were truly converted. They did not possess saving–that is, life-changing–faith in Christ.”
A life of true, saving faith is evidenced by genuine repentance and is followed by progressive growth in godliness. Let us, therefore, examine our souls to see if we possess the marks of grace that are consistent with saving faith. If we are unsure, then we ought to humbly ask God to save and sanctify us so that we may be transformed into His likeness and restored to His favor.