An oasis of water.

Two men were crawling through a desert, dying of thirst. One man managed to get to his feet, and stumbled over a small rise. To his utter surprise he found an oasis of cool, fresh water. He fell into the water, drank to his heart’s content, and ran back to tell his dying friend the good news.

He said, “There’s an oasis of water over that rise. Come with me, drink, and you will live!” The dying man looked up, and said through parched lips, “You liar! I don’t believe the water is there…and you are a naïve fool to believe it. Don’t try to push your so-called water down my throat.

“I have proof that you are deceived—that hill you stumbled over is millions of years old. Besides, it’s my life, and I choose to stay here and die, you narrow-minded fool!”

Jesus said, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water” (John 7:37,38).

Isaiah 55:1 “Ho! tEveryone who thirsts, Come to the waters; And you who have no money, Come, buy and eat. Yes, come, buy wine and milk Without money and without price.

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A fragrant ointment.

The name of Jesus to the Christian is like a wonderful, fragrant ointment that releases the aroma of the love of God. Jesus is the focal point of our salvation: “If anyone does not love the Lord Jesus Christ, let him be accursed” (1 Cor. 16:22).

Song of Solomon 1:3 Because of the fragrance of your good ointments, Your name is ointment poured forth; Therefore the virgins love you.

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Christ can be found now!

“At Dublin a young man found Christ. He went home and lived so godly and so Christlike a life that two of his brothers could not understand what had wrought the change in him. They left Dublin and followed us to Sheffield, and there found Christ. They were in earnest. But, thanks be to God, Christ can be found now. I firmly believe every reader can find Christ now, if you will seek for Him with all your heart. He says, ‘Call upon me.’” D. L. Moody 

Job 8:5 If you would earnestly seek God And make your supplication to the Almighty,6 If you were pure and upright, Surely now He would awake for you, And prosper your rightful dwelling place.

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An opportunity.

We need not hide verses that speak of God killing whom He will. All of His judgments are righteous and true altogether, and the One who gave us life has the right to take it from all who sin (see 1 Sam. 2:6; Job 12:10). If God were to give humanity absolute justice, we all would be struck down the moment we sinned. However, He has extended His mercy toward us and let us live, giving us opportunity to repent (see 2 Pet. 3:9).

Deuteronomy 32:39 ‘Now see that I, even I, am He, And there is no God besides Me; I kill and I make alive; I wound and I heal; Nor is there any who can deliver from My hand.40 For I raise My hand to heaven, And say, “ As I live forever,41 If I whet My glittering sword, And My hand takes hold on judgment, I will render vengeance to My enemies, And repay those who hate Me.

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“If hell is just ‘separation from God,’ it’s no big deal. According to Christians we’re in that state now.”

This perceptive atheist has identified a problem with this popular but unbiblical phrase. Modern preachers often tell a sinner that if he dies without Christ’s forgiveness he will be “separated from God” forever. It’s what I call a “fear of man cliché”—it’s a substitute for the uncomfortable topic of hell. There are a number of other unbiblical phrases the modern church has invented that fall in the same category, such as a “Christ-less eternity” and a “lost eternity.” But since the godless don’t want God in this life, how is the threat of being without Him in the next life going to awaken them? Modern preachers have fed the sinner the lie that there is an alternative to hell, when there is not. It is not easy to say, but if a sinner dies in his sins, he doesn’t go to a “Christless eternity,” but to a place of conscious torment called “hell.” Death is a mere down payment for his sins; hell is his full wages. (For a biblical description of hell, see Rev. 1:18 comment.)

So don’t be guilty of failing to preach “the whole counsel of God” (see Acts 20:26,27) and warning the lost of what awaits them on Judgment Day. They will not be able to get away from the God they so despise. Our God fills the heavens and the earth, and there is nowhere we can go that is outside His presence. He presides even over hell (see Psa. 139:7,8; Jer. 23:24; Rev. 14:10).

Psalm 139:7 Where can I go from Your Spirit? Or where can I flee from Your presence? 8 If I ascend into heaven, You are there; If I make my bed in thell, behold, You are there. 

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“I think non-Christians can be good, normal people.”

It deeply concerns me when I hear a professing Christian telling an unbeliever that he is a good person. Jesus said that there is no one good but God (see Mark 10:18). Anyone who says that human beings are good is calling Jesus a liar. My concern isn’t just that the unbeliever is being confirmed in his deception, but it makes me doubt the genuine nature of the Christian’s salvation, because he seems to have no biblical understanding of sin himself. This deception comes when the Law is not used to bring the knowledge of sin (see Rom. 3:19,20) and to show sin to be “exceedingly sinful” (see Rom. 7:13).

Not surprisingly, Christians who think sinners are “good” believe that preaching the gospel simply means to tell them “Jesus loves you,” something for which there is no precedent in Scripture. Wherever the love of Christ is preached, it is almost always in direct correlation to the cross (see Matt. 10:22 comment). And the cross makes no sense without mentioning sin, and sin makes no sense without preaching the Law, for “sin is transgression of the Law” (1 John 3:4, KJV).

I thought I was a good person until I understood that in God’s eyes, “good” means to be morally perfect. The only just rule by which we can measure our morality is the Ten Commandments. It was through the moral Law that I learned God considers lust to be adultery and hatred to be murder. When I measured myself by that standard I realized I was not good. At all.

It is also not surprising in this case that unbelievers would have kind words for the Christian. This is because they are not offended by his message. However, to fail to warn sinners of the terrible consequences of sin (damnation in hell), and to instead tell them that they are good people, is the ultimate betrayal. Jesus warned, “Woe to you when all men speak well of you, for so did their fathers to the false prophets” (Luke 6:26).

Luke 18:19 So Jesus said to him, “Why do you call Me good? No one is good but One, that is, God.

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All Christians are missionaries.

It is essential that all Christians understand that they are missionaries, and that the world that lies outside of their church’s doors in the mission field.

“It is one thing for a minister to be an advocate and supporter of missions: it is another and very different thing for him to understand that missions are the chief end of the church, and therefore the chief end for which his congregation exists. It is only when this truth masters him in its spiritual power that he will be able to give the subject of missions its true place in his ministry.” E. R. Hendrix

Luke 14:23 Then the master said to the servant, ‘Go out into the highways and hedges, and compel them to come in, that my house may be filled.

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