Conviction!


#1

I heard a preacher on TV say that people didn’t need to be convicted of their sin, they needed to be convicted that God loved them? It makes sense since I believe that we are all in Christ (because of what He accomplished by coming to Earth, living, dying and being resurrected) but that most don’t know it. God was in Christ reconciling the world to himself… now be reconciled.

Is this correct theology from your views? Should our evangelism reflect this?


#2

I don’t know about this preacher’s experience, but it seems that the more convicted I am of God’s love for me, the more convicted I am of my sin. And of course, Paul tells us that it is God’s kindness that is meant to lead us to repentance (Rom 2:4).


#3

Not sure the question is about one’s experience. I was wondering if it is theologically correct that we need to be convicted about God’s love before we are convicted about sin. If it is then it seems to be a fundamental flaw in Christianity that we preach sin versus God’s love.


#4

Sorry for not answering the actual question; that was simply my initial thought on the topic. :blush:

Yeah, I think it’s theologically correct to say that we need some conviction about God’s love for us before we can be convicted of our sin in such a way that we are brought to “repentance that leads to salvation without regret.”


#5

Super-ditto! :slight_smile:

I strongly suspect there will be something along this line in the Glorious Appearance, when people from all nations shall be wailing when they see Christ, as they would weep over their own only-begotten child. Christ’s own coming shall lead to the conviction, repentance and conversion of many (if not immediately to all).


#6

Hm… Well, I think the Biblical record shows that people can (and were) convicted of their sin in various ways before being convicted about God’s love (as/in Christ or otherwise). Lewis certainly believed that a person has to recognize first that they need saving before they will care much about the saving love of God, and I think there’s a lot to that. People can have a shallow notion of the love of God, such that they can’t conceive of God being concerned with ‘sin’ at all.

Metaphysically, I would argue for God’s existence, God’s essential interpersonal union (and thus His existence as love), God’s relation (including love) for creation (including myself), before getting to ethics and sin (and so to the topic of God’s salvation of sinners from sin). But historically, it is a lot easier to get people to acknowledge injustice, even in themselves, than to acknowledge God’s existence, love and salvation.

(This is easily illustrated by the observation that people of practically every belief in all human history accept the reality of injustice–at least against themselves!–even if they don’t believe in God, or that God cares about such things.)