ATHEIST TELLS US HOW TO BE A GOOD CHRISTIAN

Great article from James Macpherson. James writes Rebel News, Sky News, and The Spectator Australia. He appears on Sky TV weekly as a commentator on The World According to Rowan Dean. He is the author of “Notes from Woketopia: Laying Bare the Lunacy of Woke Culture”.

Atheist TV identity Andrew Denton, whose advocacy has been important to governments’ embrace of euthanasia, described the Catholic Church’s position as “a shameful act, devoid of love or Christian mercy towards the dying”.

“It is difficult to conceive of a less-loving or, indeed, Christian act,” he said.

So Denton, who is an atheist, will tell people how to be good Christians. ‘There is no God! Now let me instruct you on how to be a good Catholic.’

Denton is typical of the new totalitarian elites who now afflict Western civilisation. He and his ilk want everyone to be subservient and obedient, and to accept that people like him are the arbitrators of morality. But worse, Denton completely misrepresents what the Catholic leadership said. They never said a priest would refuse to attend a person’s deathbed or that they would withhold compassion. The Archbishop was very clear that pastoral support and prayers would still be offered. He simply said that if a person chooses to directly contravene Catholic teaching they couldn’t, at the same time, expect a Catholic blessing (the sacraments).

Denton twists the Archbishop’s words to make a political point. As Denton might say, it is difficult to conceive of a less-loving or, indeed, Christian act. Undeterred by context or nuance, Denton continued …

“It is little wonder that the latest census revealed that the Catholic Church in Australia is losing members at a historic rate.”

Denton’s comments would be pertinent if the church was running a popularity contest. But Christianity is true whether everyone believes it or no one believes it. The sun, after all, does not stop shining just because people close their eyes. He continued …

“If the leaders of this institution – which receives enormous subsidies from Australian taxpayers – wish to continue their acts of ferocity and contempt towards the wishes and laws of the broader community, then they can expect to see more of the same.”

Hilarious. On the one hand, people like Denton bang on about the importance of separation of church and state … and, on the other hand, they threaten the church with penalties if they don’t tow the State line. Does Denton really expect Christianity to change its doctrine every time the State changes its laws? Evidently, yes.

I believe Denton is an intelligent and compassionate man. But the entertainer suffers from the conceit of many a public intellectual, believing that his way is the only informed way. It leaves him sounding as doctrinaire as those he criticizes.

Denton’s tirade was prompted by The Australian newspaper report that Catholic priests are likely to deny the last rites to people who commit suicide with the help of the state. “Catholic priests to deny last rides in VAD (Voluntary Assisted Dying) backlash,” the headline read.

In other words, the church will continue to uphold the sanctity of life, even in the face of enormous pressure from the state and euthanasia activists. Well, thank God. Governments – with their support for late-term abortions at the start of life and unbridled enthusiasm for euthanasia at the end – can hardly be relied upon to uphold the value of life.

Christianity is pro-life. If you want people to cheer you as you engage the State to help you die, you might need to find a different religion.

But it’s interesting to me that the Catholic Church’s rejection of euthanasia is news. Is it news because people are surprised the church is willing to take a stand on a cultural issue? Or is it news because the media cannot imagine anyone – not even the Catholic Church – holding fast to timeless truths rather than bowing to the truth of the moment?

If the church said its ministers would bless euthanasia, that would be a news story, since it would represent a complete u-turn on 2000 years of Christian teaching.

I suspect the church’s intransigence on the issue is news because, as Westerners, we are so wedded to the concept of individual autonomy that we cannot imagine anyone – not even God Himself – daring to disagree with our personal choices.

If God loves us, as the church teaches, shouldn’t He cheer every lifestyle choice? And why not our deaths, while He is at it?

People who make a deliberate decision to act against the tenants of the Christian faith expect that same faith to enthusiastically bless them as they do. Talk about entitlement! (But then, isn’t that the very reason we need Christianity – to cure our innate sense of entitlement?)

Christianity is not a cult dispensing emotional support to whatever utilitarian approaches one chooses. It is an internally consistent moral framework based on fundamental commandments (e.g. “Thou shalt not kill”). If one cannot accept this, then one is free to look elsewhere for comfort.

AMBASSADORS OF GOD

The authentic Christian church is an agency of transformation. It is the embassy of the Kingdom of Heaven in the fallen world

Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ, to be reconciled to God. For our sake He made Him to be sin who knew no sin so that in Him we might become the righteousness of God.2 Corinthians 5:21-22

That Kingdom, said Jesus, is like leaven it permeates and transforms.

The kingdom of heaven is like leaven that a woman took and hid in three measures of flour, till it was all leavened.” Matthew 13:33

In contrast to mere revolution, transformation works from “inward to outward” – from the Holy Spirit’s interaction with the human spirit outward through soul and body. What is inside is ultimately “worked out” (Philippians 2:12).

Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come. Now all these things are from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation, namely, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and He has committed to us the word of reconciliation.2 Corinthians 5:17-20

Yet those who wait for the Lord will gain new strength; They will mount up with wings like eagles, they will run and not get tired, they will walk and not become weary.Isaiah 40:31

Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.Philippians 2:12-13

Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth.2 Timothy 2:15

I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.Galatians 2:20

We need to living as ambassadors for Christ now in preparation for ruling and reigning with Jesus Christ in His coming Millennial Kingdom.

They came to life and reigned with Christ for a thousand years. The rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were ended. This is the first resurrection. Blessed and holy is the one who shares in the first resurrection! Over such the second death has no power, but they will be priests of God and of Christ, and they will reign with him for a thousand years. Revelation 20:4-6

IS CHRISTIANITY SHRINKING?

Glenn T. Stanton explains in his bookThe Myth of the Dying Church (2019): “The apparent shrinking of Christianity is both true and false. True in that nominal and weak ‘Christian-in-name-only’ folks are identifying as Christians less and less. But there is no indication whatsoever that serious faith is shrinking any.”

How Christianity Is Actually Thriving in America and the World

Stanton adds, “So is Christianity shrinking? Not if you’re talking about the biblically faithful congregations that call their people to genuine Christian discipleship. Only … the mainline churches … are free falling as if they have a millstone tied to their necks.”

“So the real story is,” notes Stanton, “this is a sheep and goats being divided thing. A clarifying of faith, rather than shrinking of faith.”

In John Calvin’s Commentary on Isaiah 9:7, he provides an excellent reminder for Christians of all ages that we are truly on the winning side: “Though the kingdom of Christ is in such a condition that it appears as if we are about to perish at every moment, yet God not only protects and defends it, but also extends its boundaries far and wide, and then preserves and carries it forward in uninterrupted progression to eternity.”

Dr. Byron Johnson, Distinguished Professor of Social Sciences and Founding Director of the Institute for the Studies of Religion at Baylor University is one of the country’s leading researchers on the role of religion in public life. He gave this bit of advice: “the secular media will continue to push out the narrative that religion is dying … why not focus on the hundreds and thousands of peer-reviewed studies that show the power of faith to transform people’s lives for the better?”

The church as we know it, the institutional church is certainly dying as it is not the church Jesus established. In the last days before Jesus returns, we will return to House Churches as described in the Book of Acts. In fact, it is already happening. Francis Chan is leading the way in America. Can I also suggest you get a copy of Jim McCotter’s good book, Church Revolution Today to discover the truth about the church Jesus established and what God is doing through house churches that are following Jesus’ command to make disciples that make disciples.

CHRISTIANS WILL REJECT THE MESSAGE OF REPENTANCE IN THE LAST DAYS

David Wilkerson prophesied in 1986 that God is going to smash ministries that reject the ministry of repentance. This prophecy has proved to be true as God has exposed so many TV ministries. Hillsong in my own country, Australia, is a major one of those ministries that preached prosperity and the leadership has been exposed. Thankfully, some pastors like Francis Chan have walked away from megachurches and gone back to church as described in the Book of Acts.

Megachurch during Covid pandemic

David Wilkerson shows that even the O.T prophets like Isaiah and Jeremiah prophesied what we are seeing in these last days. The way of the flesh is so attractive: money and crowds. David Wilkerson admits he was on this path and repentance was essential for him before he could preach this message.

Ah, stubborn children,” declares the Lord, “who carry out a plan, but not mine, and who make an alliance, but not of my Spirit, that they may add sin to sin;” Isaiah 30:1

And now, go, write it before them on a tablet and inscribe it in a book, that it may be for the time to come as a witness forever. For they are a rebellious people, lying children, children unwilling to hear
the instruction of the Lord; who say to the seers, “Do not see,” and to the prophets,
Do not prophesy to us what is right; speak to us smooth things, prophesy illusions, leave the way, turn aside from the path,
let us hear no more about the Holy One of Israel.
Isaiah 30:8-11

Jesus carried out his ministry in the power of the Holy Spirit, announcing the good news of salvation. He showed numerous times his compassion for the poor and the outcast. He fulfilled prophecy and carried out His purpose: to seek and save the lost.

The steps of a man are established by the LORD when he delights in his way; though he fall, he shall not be cast headlong, for the LORD upholds his hand. I have been young, and now am old, yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken or his children begging for bread. He is ever lending generously, and his children become a blessing. Turn away from evil and do good; so shall you dwell forever. For the LORD loves justice; he will not forsake his saints. They are preserved forever, but the children of the wicked shall be cut off. The righteous shall inherit the land and dwell upon it forever.Psalms 37:23-29

MANY BELIEVE THEY ARE SAVED BUT ARE NOT

Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.Matthew 7:22-23

How come many will be ignorant of what is necessary to gain eternal life? Sadly, many people are selective about what they want from God and it invariably relates to improving their experience in this life, e.g. prosperity gospel.

David Clarkson, author of The Conviction of Hypocrites (1622–1686) lists spiritual things that many are ignorant of. He writes: “They consider not that there must be regeneration…that there must be a new creation…There must be a universal change in every part of the soul…There must be holiness in life… A renouncing of the world… Mortification… A taking up the cross.”

These can only be achieved by repentance, accepting Jesus as Lord and Saviour thereby receiving the Holy Spirit to enable the believer to live a Christian life.

Those who are born again of the Holy Spirit will know what is needed. However, countless people who consider themselves Christians are closed to these truths and are ignorant about what God requires for salvation. These kinds of people will think far too highly of themselves. “Self-love will not suffer them to deal impartially with their souls,” says Clarkson. This self-love deceives the hypocrite and causes him to flatter himself with only positive opinions. Truly, God must open their eyes and remove their blindness if they are to be saved.

If someone is able to rightly judge himself to be a sinner, there is still one final hurdle to be faced. Being able to see oneself as he is, he must now see God clearly. Clarkson says that many fall victim to “misapprehensions of God.” People will often mistakenly suppose that God is more merciful than He actually is. They think that God will neglect justice in order to issue forgiveness, which He will not.

Clarkson characterized such a thought process like this: “Though I allow myself in this or that sin, and fall into it now and then, why it is but a little one, and God is gracious, he is not so strict and rigid as some would make him.”

People will often assume what God is like based on what they want Him to be like, instead of how the Bible describes Him. Is the Bible false? Is God a liar? When Jesus said: “I am the way,” was He mistaken? We can confidently answer these questions with a “No.” Therefore, God will not make an exception for anyone (and make Himself a liar) in order to pardon an unbeliever. People must know Jesus as their Lord and Saviour and be born again by the Holy Spirit to receive eternal life.

LIVING ETERNAL NOW TRUSTING GOD

If you invest in the right treasury (eternal, not temporal), adopt the right perspective, and serve the right Master you have nothing to worry about. In contrast, those who invest in the wrong treasury (temporal, not eternal), adopt a here-and-now perspective, and serve the wrong master (money, not God) have every reason to worry.

For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!” Romans 8:15

Since we cannot serve two masters, our fear of not having enough reveals our true master.

Jesus specifically tells us not to worry about life’s necessities—food, drink, and clothes. Then He says,

But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to youMatthew 6:33

According to our Lord, giving isn’t what leaves us short of material provision. Jesus promises to provide for givers in full measure.

Give, and it will be given to you. Good measure pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap. For with the measure you use it will be measured back to you.” Luke 6:38

How about this promise in Malachi?

Bring the full tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. And thereby put me to the test, says the Lord of hosts, if I will not open the windows of heaven for you and pour down for you a blessing until there is no more need.Malachi 3:10

When we give away our treasures, we are seeking God’s Kingdom first. And therefore, “all these [material needs] will be added to” us.

available on Amazon as an ebook and trade paperback edition

Paul told the Philippians, “I have received everything in full, and I have an abundance. I am fully supplied, having received from Epaphroditus what you provided—a fragrant offering, an acceptable sacrifice, pleasing to God” Philippians 4:18, CSB

Their financial gifts were gifts to God. Since they gave so generously to provide for him and his work, Paul was confident God would provide the same for them: “My God will supply all your needs according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:19, CSB). This is a familiar promise, but most people don’t realize that in context, it is specifically for givers who have stretched themselves to become sacrificial partners in Kingdom ministry. “For even in Thessalonica you sent gifts for my need several times” (v.16).

RANDY & NANCI ALCORN’S TESTIMONY

In some cases, God’s provision is obvious—we get an unexpected check in the mail or are given something we thought we’d have to buy. One time Nanci and I discovered an error we’d made in our bank balance, finding we had significantly more money than we realized.

In other cases, God’s provision is less obvious but equally generous. A washing machine that should have broken down a decade ago keeps working. A car with more than two hundred thousand miles runs for three years needing no repairs. A checking account that should have dried up long before the end of the month somehow makes it through. As God miraculously stretched the widow’s oil supply in Elisha’s day (2 Kings 4:1-7), and as He made the Israelites’ clothes and sandals last forty years in the wilderness (Deuteronomy 8:4), I’m convinced He sometimes graciously extends the life of things that would normally need replacement.

The God who fed a million-member family in the wilderness for forty years, fed five thousand with one boy’s lunch, and who is perfectly capable of turning water into wine and stones into bread, will not have any trouble providing whatever He knows you need.

Adapted from the article by Randy Alcorn, “If We Fear God, We Can Trust His Provision” August 8th, 2022 http://www.patheos.com

OBEDIENCE NO MATTER WHAT THE OUTCOME

John Chau

On Nov. 15, 2018, John made first contact with the Sentinelese. Later that day, a Sentinelese boy shot an arrow at John that lodged in the Bible he was holding.

John retreated and prayed for wisdom. Should he keep going? Should he turn back?

“God, I don’t want to die,” John wrote in his journal that evening. “WHO WILL TAKE MY PLACE IF I DO? Forgive [the boy who shot me] and any of the people on this island who try to kill me, and especially forgive them if they succeed.”

On the morning of Nov. 17, the fishermen who had dropped John off saw tribesmen burying John’s body on the beach.

“I believe that the measure of success in the kingdom of God is obedience,” John Chau said shortly before his death. “I want my life to reflect obedience to Christ and to live in obedience to Him. I think that Jesus is worth it. He’s worth everything.”

John Chau was one of whom the world was not worthy of. I remember when the news of him got onto the media, people mocked his decision and said it was his fault that he died, sadly even some people who profess the faith condemned his actions. What a beautiful life he lived for the Lord. He reminds me of how Korea got the gospel through Missionary Thomas who got killed on the shore even before he got to preach the gospel just like John Chau, but through that death, a great revival was brought forth upon Korea. May the blood of John Chau bring great revival upon the Sentinelese people. Just like what God’s word says in John 12:24, “Truly, truly I say to you unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit.” Truly humbled by what John Chau realized as he gave his life to serve the Sentinelese people. Thank you, VOM for this beautiful video!

BELIEF OF AUSTRALIANS ABOUT JESUS AND THE RESURRECTION

The recent Australian Community Survey (ACS) run by National Church Life Survey (NCLS) Research, reveals current beliefs amongst Australians about Jesus and the Resurrection.

44% of Australians believe in the resurrection of Jesus from the dead in some way according to the research.

30% of Australians do not believe in the resurrection of Jesus from the dead

25% of  Australians do not know what they believe.

50% of all Australians believe Jesus of Nazareth to be a historical figure. This is perplexing, given the wide acceptance amongst historians that Jesus Christ was a real person who lived in first-century Palestine.

22% of Australians accepted Jesus was divine, or ’God in human form who lived among people in the 1st Century’

20% of Australians thought Jesus was a mythical or fictional character.

30% of Australians don’t know.

Camdenville Methodist Church Girl’s Vigoro team and Men’s Cricket team. Mr. Bottomley was pastor of the church and Sunday School that was a feature article in the Sunday Telegraph newspaper, “The Miracle at Camdenville”.

These figures differ greatly from when I was a boy attending Sunday School at a Methodist Church in Camdenville, Sydney, a time when most people identified with a Protestant or Catholic faith. I am the boy with a white shirt in the back row, third from the right. My sister is in the back row with an arrow pointing down to her head, My brother is the tallest boy in the centre of the back row.

There is no doubt that the teaching of the failed theory of evolution as a mechanism for bringing this complex universe into being is the reason for discarding the God of the Bible as the Creator of the Cosmos and Jesus Christ, God’s Son as the Saviour of mankind. Thank goodness, the discovery of DNA (complex information that controls the functions of all cells in the body) and the electron microscope which has revealed complex machinery in the cells that had to be complete from day one of the cell’s existence for the cell to function correctly has revealed that creation is the only plausible explanation for the complex cosmos that exists.

AMERICAN ADHERENCE TO BIBLICAL CHRISTIANITY FADES IN CHURCHES

By Leonardo Blair, Senior Features Reporter, ChristianityToday, Thursday, April 28, 2022

Parents of preteens, children younger than 13, “are in a state of spiritual distress” as American adherence to biblical Christianity fades in churches, and a “tragic crash” is coming as a result of the situation, according to new data from the Cultural Research Center at Arizona Christian University and the American Worldview Inventory 2022.

“While the warning signs are identifiable and unmistakable, it appears that parents, as well as their support system (i.e., churches, extended family, and parachurch ministries), are too distracted or disinterested to acknowledge and address the parenting crisis. It seems that a tragic crash is in store,” said George Barna, director of research at the Cultural Research Center at Arizona Christian, in a release earlier this month.

“Parents, to whom the Bible assigns the primary responsibility for shaping the worldview of their children, are called to equip youngsters to grow up in a relationship with and service to God. That requires the intentional and consistent development of a biblical worldview in the minds and hearts of children since every person’s worldview begins developing before their second birthday,” Barna explained.

“Yet parents are not devoted to biblical worldview development in their children partly because they do not possess a biblical worldview to pass on to their progeny. The CRC research reveals that a paltry 2% of the parents of preteens — children in the worldview development window — have a biblical worldview.”

A big reason for the lack of a biblical worldview in parents today is syncretism. This ideology is described as “the worldview that merges otherwise incompatible philosophies of life into a made-to-order worldview that incorporates enough biblical elements to be minimally Christian in nature.”

Under the sway of syncretism, according to Barna, the American Church has failed to contend earnestly for the Christian faith.

“The American Church has lowered the entry bar so much that it is difficult to identify any beliefs that disqualify one from claiming to be Christian. The parents of children under the age of 13 are a stellar example of this Christian nominalism that is widely accepted as spiritually normal and healthy,” he said.

“Indeed, a worldview is comprised of a unified series of beliefs that then determine behavior. The alarm bell has not been rung because there is no single belief, or even limited series of identified beliefs, that are acknowledged as undermining Christianity or disqualifying an amenable adult from being considered a disciple of Jesus.”

Barna suggested that one explanation for the current crisis of faith is that the American Church is measuring the wrong indicators of faith.

“By emphasizing measures such as church attendance and participation in prayer, the emphasis is placed upon the quantity rather than the quality of spiritual activity, and on overt participation rather than core developmental efforts,” he noted.

“In other words, the emphasis is placed upon breadth rather than depth. But even more significantly, the spiritual warning signs have been misinterpreted. By looking for glaring deficiencies in the lives of self-described Christians, leaders have ignored the importance of numerous, less noticeable deficiencies. Their conclusion is that nobody is perfect, so while there are some identifiable spiritual and lifestyle defects among parents, they are not sufficiently disturbing to constitute a crisis or require a concerted call to action.”

Church leaders, explained Barna, have largely ignored the crisis of faith in the Christian community because indicators like church attendance, Bible sales and donations “have remained sufficiently robust to feel reassured.”

Barna noted that while some commentators on the effect of syncretism on the American Church might minimize it as a “rough patch,” emerging data on children shows a different picture.

“The disinterest and even disrespect many children show to their elders is partially a reaction to the lack of authenticity and integrity they experience in the presence of parents, teachers, pastors, and other cultural leaders. Children sometimes feel compelled to ignore adults whose talk and walk are inconsistent,” he said.

“When children are exposed to teaching — through words or actions, whether formal or informal — that are contradictory, they naturally conclude that the Christian faith is inherently contradictory and therefore may not be what they are seeking as a life philosophy,” Barna adds. “Young people may be interested in and intrigued by Bible stories, but unless the underlying life principles are both identified and exemplified, children are likely to miss out on those life changing truths.”

He suggested that the reason most Christians aren’t alarmed by the crisis of faith and parenting could be that the rest of the culture is syncretistic as well.

Data published by ACU last year shows that of an estimated 176 million American adults who identify as Christian, just 6%, or 15 million of them, actually hold a biblical worldview.

The study shows, in general, that while a majority of America’s self-identified Christians, including many who identify as Evangelical, believe that God is all-powerful, all-knowing and is the Creator of the universe, more than half reject a number of biblical teachings and principles, including the existence of the Holy Spirit.

Strong majorities also errantly believe that all religious faiths are of equal value, people are basically good, and that people can use acts of goodness to earn their way into Heaven.

The study further showed that majorities don’t believe in moral absolutes; consider feelings, experience, or the input of friends and family as their most trusted sources of moral guidance; and say that having faith matters more than which faith you pursue.

Everyone who makes a practice of sinning also practices lawlessness; sin is lawlessness. 1 John 3:4

According to Barna, “If ever there was a time when our nation was desperate for a grassroots spiritual revival led by the remnant in the pews who still revere God, Jesus Christ, the Bible, and truth, now is that time.”

However, the Bible reveals that Jesus told His disciples that in the end times just before He returns to this earth there would be a great falling away in the church. This is just one of the many end times Jesus gave us so we would not be caught off guard.

And then many will fall away and betray one another and hate one another. And many false prophets will arise and lead many astray. And because lawlessness (SIN) will be increased, the love of many will grow cold.Matthew 24:10-12

YOU’RE NOT LIVING IF YOU ARE NOT LIVING FOR THIS

Pastor and author David Platt warned young Christians this week that taking a “casual, comfortable, cultural” approach to their faith, neglecting God’s command to proactively share the Gospel, and instead pursuing material successes, will lead to a wasted life.

“Be finished and done with a form of Christianity that says, ‘Pray a prayer, go to church, live it up in the world, go to some conferences and coast your way to Heaven,’” the Virginia-based pastor said during the annual Passion conference in Atlanta this week. “That’s not Christianity, because it’s not following Christ.”

David Platt says 'very skewed' version of Bible 'being sold across our culture,' blasts 'superficial Christianity'
Evangelical Baptist pastor David Platt pleads with an audience of thousands of adults and teens for them to spread the Gospel to unreached people at the annual Passion 2022 Conference in Georgia.

Platt, the lead pastor of McLean Bible Church, told the 65,000 young adults gathered inside the Mercedes Benz Stadium that to follow Jesus means allowing the Gospel message and mission to “dictate everything you think, desire and do, dictate your plans, dreams, how you’re going to live, what degree you’re going to get and how you’re going to make and spend money for the spread of God’s great love in Jesus among the nations.”

“You will waste your life if you get caught up in this American dream,” he continued. “Don’t do it. Lift your eyes above the distractions. Look at the destiny of this world. The train of history is headed towards people of every nation, tribe, and tongue, enjoying and praising Jesus. Jump on that train.”

Platt spoke directly about the U.S., noting it is “quite possibly” the one place in the world with the greatest access to the Gospel, set apart from the many countries whose citizens “don’t have access to someone who can tell them about Jesus” and “don’t have followers of Jesus or churches proclaiming the Good News of God’s great love.”

Displaying the Radical Stratus map, showing the myriad places around the globe where the Gospel is not accessible, the pastor explained the importance of international missions work.

“This is why we don’t say, ‘Well, I don’t know why we talk about unreached people around the world when there are unreached people on my campus, there are unreached people in my neighborhood,’” Platt said. “You say, ‘How do you know?’ Because they’re on your campus. They’re in your neighborhood. They have access to the Gospel. You’re it.”

“We’re talking about people who don’t have anyone near them to tell them about Jesus,” he added.

In light of that information, Platt closed his message by urging the Passion conference attendees to use their platforms, access, careers, finances, etc., to share the Gospel with people who have never heard it.

“Based on this picture of God’s Word and this picture in the world, I want to plead with you tonight to refuse to settle for a casual, comfortable, cultural Christianity,” he said. “I want to plead with you to refuse to do what millions of Christians and leaders of churches are doing in our country — to turn a blind eye and a deaf ear to 3.2 billion people and thousands of people groups who have never heard the Gospel.”

Platt told the crowd their purpose, as believers, is to tell others about Jesus. “You are not living if you’re not living for this,” he said.

“As a result of His ultimate rescue, God’s glory shines in this broken world not only through strengths but also through scars, ” he concluded.

Live for this. If necessary, die for this — for people from all nations to hear and receive the Good News of God’s great love in Jesus.