Back in high school I was a pretty ardent evangelical. Friends and I would attempt at various times and places to approach people with the message of the gospel and compel them to believe. Let’s just say the results weren’t exactly encouraging. One such endeavor happened at an area Italian festival. Amidst a giant crowd, my friend began to draw on the ground with sidewalk chalk. Intrigued by what they thought was some type of street artist, droves of people began to circle around. Then, after drawing a confusing looking something-or-other, my friend got up and began deciphering the hieroglyphic and thus sharing the gospel. Some within the crowd rolled their eyes and left, but others couldn’t escape the ambush from the rest of us. We asked people what they thought of this guy, pretending we were bystanders. Then, after only half-listening to their response, we pounced with the gospel message. Some then realized we were in cahoots and took off, but others fired back with questions in a cat-and-mouse type game.
I MENTIONED THAT I LOVE QUESTIONS, DIDN’T I?
The type of questions those people asked intrigue me to this day. They would ask questions like, “What if I feel my girlfriend up but not have intercourse…is that ok with God?” Or, “What if I smoke pot but don’t do cocaine?” We wanted to talk about salvation; they wanted to see what they could get away with. In sum, they were simply asking me, “What’s the most I can get out of doing the least.”
Now I have come a LONG way since then. But it’s not just a change of methods or personal maturity. My understanding of what salvation means has changed as well. Evangelicals throw around the word “saved” quite a bit, but many are using it as a buzz word that vindicates their heavenly status. Sure, they’ll have some scriptures thrown in there; but I have found that most people who use the word “saved” have not dug deep enough into the word’s meaning.
“LET’S GIVE ‘EM SOMETHIN’ TO TALK ABOUT”
Meanwhile, I have experienced many people outside the church thinking a great deal about the subject. “Life After Death” may be a more relative term, but the questions are the same. Because of this, I’m going to begin a series of articles on what I believe salvation to be. Though the book isn’t shut with me on this topic, I feel that I have done enough thinking about it at the very least to get a good conversation going. Please feel free to think with me on this blog, and for heaven’s sake don’t feel like you need to agree with me. In fact, challenge my views. I’m writing this to Christians and non-Christians alike. This is not “bait and switch,” nor is it some type of ploy to get you to say a prayer at the end. It’s simply my take on a popular topic that is left open for meaningful discussion. You can look for it at the end of each week (either Friday or Saturday). Thanks for reading 🙂