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    "You are really cool you are married to an European!! How cooler can you be??"
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    "Oh, you did not ask for Bonhoeffer's opinion did you? You wanted mine..."
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    "I enjoy your comments, but they are always delightfully enigmatic"
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Friday, January 12, 2007

Why do you believe...?

Once more I need to express my gratitude to those of you who participate in these discussions. I’m even more grateful for the loving way in which you do it. ;-)

Today’s question will require an alternate perspective on yesterday’s post concerning persuasion and consequently will shift the evidentiary burden. I hope that all who feel pressed to respond today will also offer a response to the previous post as well. Please feel free to address both perspectives in today’s discussion.

Why do you believe it is possible to persuade a man to believe in Christ Jesus?

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Anonymous luthsem said...

This is impossible. Only the work of the Holy Spirit who calls, enlightens and gathers those who believe.
Yes we are to be responsible to share the good news of the gospel but we do not have the ability to persuade someone to believe that is God's work.

1/12/2007 08:21:00 AM  
Blogger Kc said...

Rich, thanks for weighing in on this one. How would you say the Holy Spirit accomplishes this work, IOW, by what means does He accomplish this? Could you also provide your scriptural reference?

1/12/2007 09:16:00 AM  
Blogger Kris said...

Because his blindness will be removed if he turns to the Lord in belief.
2 Cor. 3:16

This doesn't contradict my answer to the previous question.

I have to disagree with luthsem a little. Paul said he became all things to all men so that perhaps he could persuade some. We talk about the Holy Spirit elightening, isn't the Holy Spirit in each of us who believe?

If He is in each of us who believe then couldn't His enlightening work be done thru our persuading like Paul was trying to do?

1/12/2007 01:59:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

God uses men to proclaim the good news of his gospel (Isaiah 52:7). The Holy Spirit applies the word that is being spoken by witnesses to save sinners. The persuading is done by the Holy Spirit (1 Cor 3:6-7)

1/12/2007 07:04:00 PM  
Blogger Blaurock said...

Paul asked the Colossian to "pray" that he would have an "open door" and that he would "speak" as he ought. In 2 Thess., he asked for prayer that the word would "run swiftly" and "be glorified."

There is an obvious Godward and manward responsiblity in evangelism. Apollos was "mighty in the scriptures" and yet the opportunities, gifting and results were from God. Still, his study, tact, discernment and persuasion are "real" tools wielded by the Holy Spirit.

I believe it is possible to persuade a man to believe because of the very fact that God has promised that in proclaimation of the gospel "He would be with us" even to the end of the age. We can "peach the word" in season and out, with the confidence that men and women will be saved through the One who "works together with us" and "is" sufficient for "these things."

I remember a young reporter in Kosova named Ramadan who was in the UN internet for news people. I sat down next to him and explained the gospel. He began to cry, and said,"I've been waiting to hear this my whole life!" I think the Holy Spirit was so attending to the truth, that Ramadan felt that it was as if his repentance and faith were on hold until this moment in time, and now he was free. God says(in a way through Paul's example), "By all means save some." He also says," Without me you can do nothing." That's a great promise for a great command, that grants to us a great confidence.

1/13/2007 02:07:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well said. God partners with man to accomplish His purpose--not because He has to, because He chooses to.

1/13/2007 10:11:00 PM  
Blogger Kc said...

Brothers, thank you all for your thoughts. I hope to pursue this thinking with you in the near future. I think much of our understanding on this topic is heavily influenced by our philosophy on beliefs in general and I hope to try and discover, as much as possible, what the scripture relates concerning belief. I will very much appreciate your critique.

1/15/2007 02:28:00 PM  
Blogger Redeemed said...

Because...I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the POWER OF GOD unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. Rom 1:16

Great question, KC!

1/15/2007 08:28:00 PM  
Anonymous Amy Cloud said...

Great discussion, everyone.

The verses that came to mind as I was reading this is 2 Corinthians 5:10-11.
It speaks of being reconciled to God, then pursuading others to being recociled to God as well. Maybe, God wants us to be someone who is willing to keep going and sharing with the same person and not giving up. Let being persistent and persuasiveness work together.

1/17/2007 11:08:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, I'm late to the party. :) Great question and very articulate answers.

I would certainly agree with Jazzy in his explanation.

1/17/2007 02:56:00 PM  
Blogger Kc said...

Sarah thanks so much for your answer! Your devotion and desire to the cause of Christ is a great inspiration to me! ;-)

Sister Cloud it’s wonderful to be able to have your thoughts here. I think you’ve offered an excellent scripture from which to discuss this topic.

Gayla, I’d say any party is blessed to have you, late or otherwise. ;-) I liked Jazzy’s answer as well and I’m debating on using it as a foundation for expanding on the discussion.

1/17/2007 03:48:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why, thank you! :)

1/18/2007 02:28:00 PM  

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