6/14/13 Anna about 45
A planned early morning discipleship meeting with a church brother at Dunkin’ Donuts didn’t happen – I guess he overslept – so I turned to a lady at the table next to me and asked about her beliefs. Her name is Anna, and although she hasn’t thought much about religion since her childhood she seemed very open to talking, possible due to the recent passing of her husband. As we talked it seemed like memories of what she had learned about God and the Bible as a child came flooding back to her, and I was thankful that she had at least some foundational beliefs that I could build from. Her neglect of much thought about God has led her to minimize the seriousness of sin and the depth of God’s holiness, so that she simply thinks all good people will go to heaven and she is one of them. Her sins just didn’t seem that serious to her, so I asked what she believed about Adam and Eve – “What was so bad about eating from that tree?” She agreed it was their disobedience, so I talked about the fact that we all now have the knowledge of good and evil – a God-given conscience – and like Adam we disobey God every time we choose to go against it, no matter how small the offense. This helped her begin to realize the seriousness of her sins and her need for mercy before God, so she was glad when I began to talk about the forgiveness found in Jesus. In Romans 7, Paul wrote “Is the law sinful? Certainly not! Nevertheless, I would not have known what sin was had it not been for the law.” It certainly was a good reminder for Anna. James wrote that we should look into the law like we look into a mirror, using it to see ourselves as we really are, calling it the “perfect law that gives freedom” because by it we see our need for the One who can set us free from the law of sin and death. People don’t come to the Savior until they know they need to be saved. We need to include the standard of God’s law when sharing the Gospel so people like Anna can see their need for Jesus.