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Focus on America

Powerless Christians

Researcher George Barna states, "The actions, habits and lifestyles of many Christians today are almost identical to those of unbelievers."

Maybe that’s why sinners seem to have little desire for what we as Christians advertise.

When my wife and I built a home last year, I made it a point to get acquainted with everyone who worked on our house; and, whenever I had an opportunity, I would share Jesus with each worker. I learned that no matter the lifestyle or how crude the language, each felt he/she was going to heaven – one way or another.

I have drawn several conclusions from this 10-month experience.

First, no clear definition exists in the minds of most people today concerning right and wrong. They say it depends on how they look at it and the circumstances they are in. I believe this is due to the lack of conviction of sin, which is the responsibility of believers who allow the Holy Spirit’s power to work in them. For too long many Christians in America have blamed everyone from the courts to the abortionists for the spiritual decline of our nation. I disagree. Powerless Christians are responsible — not unbelievers.

The apostle Paul, when confronted by the power of God on the Damascus Road, was radically transformed. Later he wrote, "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!" (2 Corinthians 5:17, NIV). Our theology must continue to teach that conversions be so radical that even people who don’t like us can see the difference.

Second, we must demonstrate the power of the gospel in the marketplace. Our integrity in financial dealings and our truthfulness must bear witness with the unsaved that we are children of God. Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount in Matthew 5-7 gives guidelines as to how this should happen.

In this Evangel are stories of those who have been radically transformed by the gospel and who are now passionate about seeing others come to Christ. They believe, as I do, that revival will not come to this nation through new laws or through politics. Revival will come only when Christians become Jesus to those around them.

Maybe the sign I saw at a center for recovering addicts should hang around the neck of each believer: "This ground … is guarded by angels through direct command of the Lord Jesus Christ through the power of the Holy Spirit."

— Charles E. Hackett

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