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Salvation Rejected due to Churches?|
Q. My best friend rejected salvation because she says the pastor was unfriendly and her church didn't care about her. They were not "Christlike" in her words. What should I tell her?
I'm sorry her pastor wasn't friendly and the church isn't "Christ like." But, salvation never comes through people or the church in the first place. If she is focusing upon humans for salvation she is in big trouble.
Relationship with God or Humans?
Because of this we always encourage our readers to study the Word on their own, get involved in a church and a home bible study group - but to always remember that their salvation is between them and the Lord. "People" won't save them. The "church" doesn't save them. Only a personal relationship with Jesus Christ saves them.
Belief in Sister Mary&First Church of Nowhere?
Study all of the salvation verses you can find. All of them require a personal relationship with the living Lord. Consider these:
"And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved" (Acts 4:12, ESV). (It doesn't say there is salvation through Pastor Bob and the First Church of Oregon).
"For everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved" (Romans 10:13).
(It doesn't say everyone who calls on the name of Reverend Jim will be saved).
"And they said, 'Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household" (Acts 16:31). (It doesn't say you should believe in Sister Paula and you and your kids will be saved, does it)?
Romans 10:9 clearly states,
…"if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved."
(If your friend wants true life after death, then she must believe in the gospel message. Only Jesus Christ can bring her to life again after she dies. He alone has the power to raise people to life).
Gospel in a Nutshell
…"your faith is built on this wonderful message. And it is this Good News that saves you if you firmly believe it…that Christ died for our sins, just as the Scriptures said. He was buried, and he was raised from the dead on the third day, as the Scriptures said" (1 Corinthians 15: 1-4, NLT).
This passage of Scripture goes on to say,
"if Christ was not raised, then all our preaching is useless, and your trust in God is useless" (v. 14). If there is no life after death then "Let's feast and get drunk, for tomorrow we die!" (v. 32).
But, the truth is that "Christians who have died will be raised with transformed bodies - so that we will never die" (v. 52).
That is the "living" gospel message in a nutshell.
Tell your friend that no church and no pastor can give her this. Only Jesus the Messiah can give her true, eternal life. Salvation comes through Him - not through her pastor or church.
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