I was recently reading a blog forum where several, apparently Christians, were trying to out scripture a non-believer who said he knew the Bible forward and backward. Satan is good at quoting the words of God, though not always accurately. I felt sad for those trying to convince, for how aggravated they became with the antagonist.
I know it is our nature to try to convince someone of what we believe to be true, but the Word says without the Spirit touching the other person we should walk away, in other words they are not hearing or open to hear the truth.
Without the Spirit convicting, the preaching of the gospel is foolishness to those that are perishing. The message of Christ only makes sense when God comes into the midst of the conversation. I don’t know how it happens, but I know that everything falls into place when we open to God’s love and His Spirit and by faith in the message, we are changed. Prayer will let us know if the Spirit is there to convict and if not, we will be casting pearls before swine.
Frankly, I would not have wasted my time with the antagonist. It was like casting pearls before swine. It was obvious the antagonist was just that, not someone who wanted to learn, just someone who wanted to argue, no Spiritual conviction. The Bible teaches us once we have shared the gospel we have done our task. The rest is up to God. And if it becomes a fight, we are to shake the dust from our feet and go on to someone else who may listen.
Our task is to share the gospel, then it is the Holy Spirit that does the convicting and the saving of a soul. We do not save anyone from sin or hell, God does through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ when someone is anointed by the Spirit, accepts God’s forgiveness, and begins to walk by faith not by sight.
My pity did go to the antagonist. He was raised in a religious household, said he knew all about the Christian faith and had once believed but with all his study, he no longer believed in Christianity. (He apparently believed in some kind of supernatural, said he wasn’t an atheist but didn’t say what he believed in). What’s sad is that, knowing about Christ, about every scripture, all the rituals and all the head knowledge in the world, is not the same as really knowing Christ. When that change takes place by the supernatural Spirit of God it is so wonderful, why would we walk away from that?