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Not Willing

Not Willing!

 "O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the one who kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing!" Matthew 23:37 (NKJV)

Have you every found yourself in a position where you wanted to do something nice for someone, but they were unwilling to let you?  It could be where you wanted to help them clean their home, or some other task and yet they - for whatever reason - just would not receive what you had to offer.  

We can see this very principle happening throughout the Bible as God wants to help mankind in his lost and sinful state, but man simply is not willing to receive what God wants to give.  In the Book of Matthew we can see Jesus speaking to the Jewish people of how He wanted to gather them as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but they were not willing (Matt. 23:37).  

There are a few people who believe not everyone has the opportunity to be saved - it has been reserved for just a few chosen people.  They have taken a few certain verses and then built a whole false doctrine teaching this very heresy out of them.  It is true, God is the one doing the choosing and we do not choose Him, but it is lie to believe He only died for the chosen few. 

We are told clearly in Scripture God is not willing that any should perish, but that ALL should come to repentance (2 Peter 3:9), and as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name (John 1:12). And Jesus makes it abundantly clear, the everlasting fire of hell was never prepared for man, but for the devil and his angels (Matt. 25:41).

Q:    So if the offering of Jesus body was made once for all, what is our part in salvation?  Is everybody saved then?

No, no one is automatically saved.  We need to be clear, salvation is from the Lord and man can do nothing to earn his way to heaven - all our righteousness is like filthy rags(Isa. 64:6). God saves us in His amazing grace through faith not of ourselves, it is the gift of God.  This means God even gives us the faith to believe in Him.  We have the responsibility of making a decision of whether we will receive His free gift of salvation or whether we will say, no thanks.  We need to confess Jesus with our mouth and believe in Him in our hearts (Rom. 10:9-10).   In truth God makes it so amazingly hard for us to stay eternally separated from Him in our sin.  We literally have to trip over Him to walk into hell.  It is only man's pride and rebellious nature keeping him from receiving God's love man is simply not willing. 

Norman Giesler said it best when he said, "We are incapable of initiating and attaining salvation but not incapable of receiving." Unfortunately when a person hears the gospel over and over again and chooses not to respond, his or her heart becomes dull; their eyes become blind to the truth, and their ears can no longer hear the message.  They may even be those who hear the gospel message and say amen to it but they decide not to truly believe and walk in faith.  When this happens they remain lost and the gospel message has lost its effectiveness in their life.

For unto us was the gospel preached, as well as unto them: but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it. Hebrews 4:2 (NKJV)

I pray it would be our heart's desire today to be willing to receive all God has for us - first salvation and then transformation.  I want to encourage you to pray for those you know to be lost; ask God to remove the veil covering their mind and hearts so they might receive the Gospel message.  

STUDY QUESTION: According to Hebrews 4:2 why didn't the Word of God profit those who heard it?

PERSONAL INVENTORY: Are you receiving God's truth within His Word and mixing it with faith?

APPLICATION: Make a conscious effort to read your Bible daily.  Choose to receive God's promises and then mix those promises with faith and walk accordingly.  

Father, thank You for the many promises given to us within Your Word.  Thank You for giving me the faith to believe in Your Son.  I freely choose to receive all You have for me today.  Help me to see the areas in my life where the enemy is tempting me to doubt.  In Jesus' precious name, amen...

Be Blessed, Pastor Scott

Copyright ©2017 by Pastor Scott Wright.
Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Bible text from the New King James Version is not to be reproduced in copies or otherwise by any means except as permitted in writing by Thomas Nelson, Inc., Attn: Bible Rights and Permissions, P.O. Box 141000, Nashville, TN 37214-1000