I frequently think about those people who view life as a curse because of an accident or a criminal offence or an unfavorable circumstance that has afflicted them and/or their family’s life. How do I as a christian challenge this rigidly held view and minister the gospel to these?
Very great question!
I notice two things in your statement. First, the reality of life of those you want to evangelize. Second, your eagerness to present the gospel to these people.
I just want to add a brief response. And I hope that these could help you.
There are two things that are undeniable when we share the gospel:
1.) We are living in a fallen world. The reason why we experience such awful things in life is because the reality we are living in is fallen.
2.) The human heart by nature is sinful. The reality that our heart is wicked and in need of redemption and Savior.
Every time someone is raising their question or sharing a story of their life about tragedy, brokenness, suffering, and pain. We have to be reminded as we share the gospel that we are living in a fallen world and us individually in need of a Savior.
As we understand these two critical realities, we better present the gospel to those people who think life is a curse. We show them there is a problem in life. And we lead them to Jesus Christ in which in Him we find hope, strength, forgiveness, redemption, and new beginning.
Thank you for reading.
I hope these help!
Thank you sir for devoting your time and attention into developing this response. It really got me to think of how to develop my response to such an issue and I particularly liked your emphasis on reminding oneself of the two realities mentioned above while sharing the gospel. I would however love to learn more about this if possible. Cheers!
Hi @joshjesussouza, let me say that your question is important because out there are many people who suffer, and the enemy use this suffering to drive them apart from God.
The response of @domingoosabel is a good one. What I can add to it, is that you can ask those people that if they don’t go to Christ, where else they think they can find rest for their souls?
I like this quote from C.S. Lewis:
“God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our conscience, but shouts in our pains: it is His megaphone to rouse a deaf world.”
The Problem of Pain by C.S. Lewis
This means that in our lifes pain points out that we were not created for this world. Instead, God wants us can be free from this suffering, maybe not instantly, but it is important to recognize that this is a byproduct of sin. And God is not a distant God that only sees us suffer but He himself came to Earth to suffer for us, so He can save us and understand us. He is our Redeemer and the only way out of this world.
@joshjesussouza I wonder if sharing with them the Lord’s words in Matthew 11:28-29 would be of help. It seems to me people who view life as a curse are people with a heavy burden (and I think open eyes). They also don’t have much to lose in this world except their burden. You have the good news that Christ came to take care of our burden of sin as well as our daily baggage and burn out. They’ve really got nothing to lose and everything to gain. Share and pray. In the end we water and plant, and God does the saving.
Everyone has pain, difficulty and struggles in life. Or at least every I have met. It is a curse, part of the curse. We live in a broken world. I was born with hemophilia. I was infected with AIDS and Hep C from blood products. Everyone hemophiliac I knew was dead by 1991. (Except 2, who weren’t infected) My mom was also infected with AIDS from blood and died in 1990. I struggled with all this. I grew up in church, and made my faith my own my senior year in HS. I didn’t walk strong in the early 90s, but never doubted or denied God and Jesus. (Just followed my own way).
People with extra hard lives need to know the awesomeness of God, His love for us, and the hope of glory, where all our tears will be wiped away. (Just like everyone else).
As Ravi took interest in everyone he spoke to, so should you, know the questioner, the person who feels cursed, or whomever you meet.
Thank you for your insight into this matter Mr Kendall. Your view has complemented the previous ones in that it offers a personal dimension to the objective truth of God. God bless!
Thank you for your insight sir! It has brought scriptural inspiration to my view. I find that the exhortation to share and pray that you mentioned right before ending this response is of primal importance especially in the situation of the person deluded by the enemy. God bless!
Thank you for sharing this Mr Guzman (especially the quote). I would like to know about God’s role in the salvation of a victim’s situation( how God compensates for the suffering and injustice)as opposed to the role in the perpetrator’s situation from you. God bless!
Josh, I hope you get to see their souls saved and their lives changed and full of joy and peace. Btw I am the lady in the picture. Depending on country of origin, my name could be either a guy’s name or a woman’s name. Amal means Hope.
I wanted to share few of my thoughts. Actually this question hits close to home for me because there was season in my life I felt the same way, because of hurt and pain in my life. Lot of pain I was afflicted with come from my own family and even after they got saved it continued because of cultural beliefs and traditions that they brought into their christian walk.
Breakthrough came into my life when my pastor and his wife showered me that I had value and God loves me and created me and I am his daughter. In difficult times they will reassure me that I was worthy, acceptable and, He made me in His image they showed me difference between how God sees me and how people or our circumstances may want us to believe what our self worth is.
That made me dive into the word of God because now I wanted to discover for myself what God had to say about me and I got to see with my own eyes in scriptures, and it changed everything for me. My understanding about myself changed. The word of God became alive and with the help of the Spirit of God, now nobody could tell me other wise. This boldness and assurance of His love and acceptance overshadowed my life and I knew I was born for His plan and purposes. I started believing God over man’s words. He set me free and brought me out of the whole situation I was in.
My encouragement to you, the best thing you can do is show people how God sees them and the intrinsic value they have in God and keep on loving them with God’s word. What it means to be forgiven and accepted in God.
Thanks, Joshua @joshjesussouza for reading my answer.
Before I try to answer your new question, please let me say that I don’t know what specific situation you are witnessing. And maybe I would answer differently to those people who struggle with those problems. I pray God gives you the necessary wisdom to answer them.
So let’s put the basis to answer your new question. I can tell you that I don’t know how exactly God acts in every specific victim-perpetrator situation, I know He cares about it. But I also know that there’s not always a perfect victim-perpetrator situation. Let me explain this.
God is a God of justice, there’s no doubt about that. “He will by no means clear the guilty” (Exodus 23:7, Numbers 14:18, Nahum 1:3). He also is “Father of the fatherless and protector of widows” (Psalm 68:5), and in many parts of the Law, we see God really hates when somebody takes advantage of his/her power (Exodus 22:21-27, Exodus 23:6-7,9, Leviticus 19:10,13-15, etc.). So we can say that God cares and do justice.
But on the other hand, we find that we also are not perfect, and maybe at some point, we also abuse our power, maybe no on the same level, but we also are guilty before God. Jesus depicted this situation in a parable:
“Therefore the kingdom of heaven may be compared to a king who wished to settle accounts with his servants. When he began to settle, one was brought to him who owed him ten thousand talents. And since he could not pay, his master ordered him to be sold, with his wife and children and all that he had, and payment to be made. So the servant fell on his knees, imploring him, ‘Have patience with me, and I will pay you everything.’ And out of pity for him, the master of that servant released him and forgave him the debt. But when that same servant went out, he found one of his fellow servants who owed him a hundred denarii, and seizing him, he began to choke him, saying, ‘Pay what you owe.’ So his fellow servant fell down and pleaded with him, ‘Have patience with me, and I will pay you.’ He refused and went and put him in prison until he should pay the debt. When his fellow servants saw what had taken place, they were greatly distressed, and they went and reported to their master all that had taken place. Then his master summoned him and said to him, ‘You wicked servant! I forgave you all that debt because you pleaded with me. And should not you have had mercy on your fellow servant, as I had mercy on you?’ And in anger his master delivered him to the jailers, until he should pay all his debt. So also my heavenly Father will do to every one of you, if you do not forgive your brother from your heart.”
So, as Paul quotes from the Scriptures, there’s no righteous, not one (Romans 3:10). Everyone is guilty before the perfect righteousness of God. And that’s why Jesus is our only hope. “He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree” (1Peter 2:24, Isaiah 53:5). So, by the time of the final judgment, there will not be a single sin without punishment. Either Jesus already paid for it, or those who didn’t accept Him will pay for themselves. And for those who accepted Jesus’ sacrifice consolation will be so great that every pain will look like nothing.
“He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.”
Thank you very much Ms Allen for testifying God’s goodness. I can relate to this since I too had experienced something similar when I was younger (this was after I was baptised); especially with the thought of a fearsome and vengeful God in the old testament who is out to get you every time you mess up. At some point, it became too much to handle and I simply gave up on my view of God being loving and good. After that, I was somehow led to read a book, written by a pastor from Singapore that was left untouched ever since it entered my home. That one book transformed my entire view of God and approach toward his scriptures to the extent of making me realise that I could not be anymore thankful for all that he has done for me. That said, Im thankful that you reminded me of this wonderful thing God did for me by sharing your story. God bless!
Thank you for correcting me Ma’am😅 I Apologise for this misunderstanding
Hahaha no problem Mr. J.D. You’re not the first one, although it’s happening less now since George Clooney married Amal .
Thank you very much Mr Guzman for devoting so much time, effort and care in preparing this response Actually the question was meant to be related to the original one in that the person who views life as a curse is usually the ‘victim’ and these would want to have the answer as to how God compensates and brings salvation. Anyways you have delivered the gist of it ingeniously. God bless!
You are welcome Joshua. I just wanted to encourage you keep going you are doing great. The testimonies we have in life gives us strength to minister to others who are going through the same thing, it becomes a tool in our arsenal that God can use through us to see people set free.
Even now when I am going through something difficult I look back how God brought me out from situations in the past and it boost my faith for the now and my heart cries out and worships Him, God how can I not praise you for all you have done. Breakthrough comes.