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Watch 2022-2023 online sermons » Adrian Rogers » Adrian Rogers - Why Do Good Things Happen to Bad People?

Adrian Rogers - Why Do Good Things Happen to Bad People?

Adrian Rogers - Why Do Good Things Happen to Bad People?

Would you take God's Word and turn to Romans chapter 8, and we're going to backtrack and revisit Romans chapter 8. My wife reminded me, she said, "Adrian, you left out a passage of Scripture that I was waiting to hear you preach on". And I said, "Well, Joyce, I guess I was moving too fast". And so this is a sermon, by, well shall we say, requirement. But not in reality. It's something that is burning in my heart. And let me just ask you a question. What is life all about? I mean, folks, we're here for such a short time and then we die. Yes, we die! Death runs in my family. And it runs in your family. And at best, life is a puzzle. There're things that we don't understand, there're circumstances that we cannot control, and then there're joys unspeakable and full of glory.

Life is full of mystery, misery, and magnificence, but it doesn't seem to make sense. Well, friend, if you get in to the eighth chapter of Romans, you're going to find out that God will bring an incredible sense to all that we see and we're going to learn something of the magnificent grace of God, in it all and through it all. A man not long ago wrote a book. The title of the book is, Why Do Bad Things Happen to Good People? That's a very wonderful title, but I don't like it really, I'll tell you why. Folks, first of all, there are no good people. The Bible says in Romans 3:10, "There's none good, no, not one".

I don't know whether you believe that or not, but that's Scripture. I mean, in and of ourselves, there are no good people. Romans 3:23, "All have sinned and come short of the glory of God". "There's none good, no, not one". So let's just take that question and turn it over and ask not, "Why do bad things happen to good people," but, friend, "Why do good things happen to bad people"? That is the grace of God. I mean, everything good that has come to us is the grace of God, in spite of our sins. Why do good things happen to bad people, to sinners such as we? Well, we're going to find a divine plan, an incredible promise, and there're four things today I pray the Holy Ghost will write upon your heart indelibly, will etch upon your consciousness and cause to reverberate through your being.

Four wonderful truths, things that are true about you if you have come to know Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and Savior. Write four things about yourself. Write first of all, I am graced, I am graced. I'm taking the word grace and making a verb out of it. I am graced by His purpose. Begin in Romans 8 verse 28 and look with me if you will, "And we know that all things," not some things, "all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called," now watch it, "according to His purpose". God has a purpose. Now, you know, Disraeli said that, "Youth is a blunder, manhood is a struggle, old age is a regret". That's the voice of a cynic. But what is the voice of the apostle Paul? He is saying that, "God has a purpose".

Now what is His purpose? Why did God create the universes? Why did God plan planet Earth? Why did God create Adam and Eve and all their progeny? Why did the Lord Jesus step out of Heaven and come to this Earth? Why did He suffer, bleed, and die upon a cross? Why, as we said, did He walk out of that grave? Why has He ascended back to the high hills of glory? Why has He forgiven your sin? Why are we here? What is the eternal purpose of God? Do you want to see? Well, we're graced with His purpose and we're going to find out what it is. It's to make us like Jesus. That's it. You say, "Is that it"? That is it. Look at it again in Romans 8 verse 28 and 29, "The called according to His purpose, for," that connects verse 29 with verse 28, "for whom He did foreknow He also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of His Son".

What is God's eternal purpose? It's to make a generation of people like Jesus, to be conformed to the image of His Son. That is why. Well, why does God want us to be conformed to the image of His Son? Well, when God created Adam and Eve in the first place in the Garden of Eden, He created them in His image. That is, so that they could know Him and worship Him and fellowship with Him. And since that image has been marred, why did Jesus Christ come to the cross? To restore that image, and He does it, first of all, by regeneration, when we're saved and we're made partakers of the Holy Ghost. And then He does it by sanctification, as we're being made more and more like the Lord Jesus Christ, and then one day, hallelujah, thank God, when Jesus comes in glorification, we will be made just like the Lord Jesus.

Now, do you want to find out how you're doing in your Christian life? Would you like to check up? Question; are you becoming more like Jesus? That's it. Are you becoming more like Jesus, not like Adrian, not are you becoming a better Baptist? The question is; are you having God's purpose being fulfilled in you; are you becoming more like the Lord Jesus? Now God is not primarily concerned about making you healthy or wealthy or popular. God's plan is that you be more like the Lord Jesus Christ. Now, if these other blessings of health and wealth come, thank God, give God thanks. Well, you say, "Pastor, what if God's purpose in me is not going to be fulfilled"? Friend, it will be fulfilled. Bank on it. You have been graced with God's purpose and, "He who hath begun a good work in you will perform it".

Philippians 1:6. Look in Romans 8 verse 30; look at it, "Moreover, whom He did predestinate them He also called". Now, go back to verse 29, I skipped that one, "For whom He did foreknow, He also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of His Son". Now did you know that it's already settled you're going to be like Jesus? It is predestined that you're going to be like the Lord Jesus. It is determined, it has been determined in the council halls of eternity. God has said, "Adrian's destination is already predetermined; he is predestined to be like Jesus". Now let me just pause right here and say parenthetically, God never predestines anybody to Hell. Never. That was a good place for an Amen. God never predestines anybody to Hell. Predestination does not deal with the lost, it deals with the saved.

Romans 8:29, "Whom He did foreknow, them did He also predestinate to be conformed to the image of His Son". When God sees me receiving Christ as my personal Lord and Savior, He predestines me to be like the Lord Jesus Christ. Those that He foreknows, He predestines, and predestined means it's already done in the heart and mind of God. You say, "Well, Adrian, does that mean you don't have any choices"? I make choices every day, some good, some bad, some neutral. I was on an airplane coming back from Salt Lake City, and on that airplane I made a lot of decisions. I could read this magazine or work on that sermon or make up my mind whether I wanted cranberry juice or Diet Coke, whether or not I wanted to eat the sandwich they offered, which I did not, and all of these other things.

I'm making all of these decisions. They're my decisions. But wait a minute, when that airplane took off from Point A and it landed over here at Point B, there was a predestined place where that airplane was going to land. Now I made all these other little decisions, but while I'm making all of these other little decisions, there's one big great decision being made. I'm going from there to here. Now granted, I know that every illustration has its weaknesses. That plane could've gone down before it got here, could've blown up, or it could've been hijacked and all of that, just don't make the illustration work harder than I want it to work. What I'm trying to say is just simply this. In the heart and mind of those airline people and that pilot and all of that, while I'm on board making a lot of little decisions, there's one great big overarching decision already been made, and that's the way your life is. You might make a lot of decisions.

Folks, today, you can scratch your ear or not scratch your ear, but I'm telling you what, God is going to make you like Jesus. It is predestined! You have been graced with God's purpose and He says, "We know, we know," that this is happening. That's what He says here. Look at it in this passage of Scripture, in Romans 8 verse 28, "And we know that all things work together for good". This is something that is obvious. You say, "Well, Pastor, I really don't understand predestination". Well, that makes two of us. That makes all of us, because you don't understand it. Vance Havner said, we love to quote Vance Havner, he said, "I don't understand electricity, but I'm not going to sit around in the dark until I do". Friend, you don't have to understand the Bible. You better start believing the Bible. It's not a book first and foremost to be explained, it's a book first and foremost to be believed.

And so listen, folks, what's it all about? Why do good things happen to bad people? Number one, we have been graced with His purpose. We're going to be like the Lord Jesus no matter what else happens. Number two, write this down. First one, I am graced with His purpose. Secondly, I am guided by God's providence. I am guided by God's providence. Now how does God fulfill His purpose? By His providence. Look in Romans 8 verse 28, "And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose". Now, notice what, it says, "And we know that all things work together for good". "For" is a preposition, and this particular preposition in the Greek language means that we're moving toward a goal. It implies movement toward an object, and God has a goal in mind.

Now we talk about providence. What is providence? That's a word we often use, providence. Well, our English word providence comes from two words, pro which means ahead of time, and video, we know about the word video, vide, to see. So, pro-vi-dence means to see ahead of time and to make provision. That is, God sees the event before it ever gets here, and that's what we call providence. God just simply sees ahead of time, and He moves everything toward the goal that He has in mind. All things are working together for good, toward that good, because of God's providence.

Years ago I read about Henry Ford, who built the first Ford automobiles and his classic automobile in that day was the Model T Ford, that came even before the Model A Ford, and according to the article that I read, old Mr. Ford was so shrewd, that when he ordered the transmissions for his Model T Fords, he said to those who bid, "I want you to box these transmissions in certain size boxes. I want the screw holes to be in certain places. I want the wood to be of thus and such character and quality". And they said, "Well, the old guy's eccentric, it really doesn't matter how you box a transmission, but we want the bid, so we'll box the transmissions this way," because he didn't make the transmissions, somebody else made the transmissions.

So when they got there to the Ford factory, they unboxed the transmissions for the Model T Ford, but you know what he did with the boxes? They were cut perfectly for the floorboards of a Model T Ford, with screw holes and everything in place, and all he had to do was take the boxes. He got the other folks to make the floorboards for him, and they were free. Well, old man Ford was just looking ahead and making provision. That's what God does, God just, God makes provision. We call that providence. Now, we may not understand, just like those people who were boxing up those transmissions did not understand, and a lot of times appearances may be deceiving.

Now, folks, put this down, if you don't get anything else down; we do not live by appearances, we live by promises. Appearances are deceiving. We don't live by explanations, we live by promises. Even when God does not rule, God overrules. Now there's a lot of evil in the world. Don't get the idea that God causes all thing. That's not what this verse says. Don't get in your mind the idea that everything that happens is God's will. Rape is not God's will. Murder is not God's will. Racial hatred is not God's will. Perversion is not God's will. Adultery is not God's will. Sodomy is not God's will. It is not God's will. Man has a will and man has an evil heart, but you see, even when man does evil, where God does not rule, God overrules, and God is still in charge of all of this. And then sometimes you'll know that God will engineer by His providence circumstances that look evil to us but they're not evil. God just has that wonderful plan.

Somewhere years ago I read about a farmer who had a great big brush pile out there; brush and debris that he was going to burn. And when he came out there he saw that a little bird had built a nest in that brush pile. Well, he knew he was going to burn it. That was a bad place for that little bird to build a nest, so the farmer destroyed the nest. When he came back days later, he found out that the bird was rebuilding the nest in that brush pile. The farmer went out there and destroyed the nest again, I think he did it three times, and finally the little bird gave up, but I can just imagine that little bird going home and saying to his mate, "I just don't know what's happening, I don't know why all these things are against us, I don't know why every time that we try to build a nest it gets destroyed".

Well, there was an unseen hand that was doing something that that bird may have thought was bad but was really good. I read also of a boy who had a twisted foot and the boy had to walk on the side of his foot like that and he was handicapped. His father, who was a loving man, took that boy to the best orthopedic surgeons and specialists, but they said, "No, we can't do anything. All of his life he will walk on the side of his foot". Well, that father would not give up. He began to study. He took his self prescribed course in orthopedics and medicine and began to study about bones and ligaments and sinews and he decided he was going to straighten his boy's foot even if the doctors would not, and he worked and built a box.

And in that box he put some screws that went into that box that could be tightened from the outside, and padded those screws on the inside and put that box on that boy's foot and began to tighten those screws until the boy cried out in pain. And he said, "Son, I love you, just trust me". That night the boy went to sleep with that wooden box on. The next day he got up and the father tightened the screws a little more, and the boy would cry out in pain and the father would comfort him, and the boy had to go around with that big box on his foot. But there came a time when the father said, "Son, I'm going to take the box off of your foot now," and he took the box off and the foot was straight. And that father had, through love and tenderness, and yet causing the boy some pain, had straightened that foot, and the boy put his arms around that father and said, "Father, I love you, thank you. It hurt, it was painful, but thank you. Thank you for what you did".

And that father had a purpose in what he did. Can you imagine some school kids who are ridiculing a boy whose father is a surgeon, and they say to that boy, "Your father is a mean man". "Why do you say my father's a mean man"? "Your father puts people to sleep where they can't even help themselves, and then he puts them on a table and cuts them open. Then he takes things out of them and throws them away and then he sews them up, and when they wake up, they cry. They're in pain. Your father's a mean man".

You know, there're some people accuse our Heavenly Father, did you know that? They accuse our Heavenly Father because they don't have any more sense than those students who might be accusing the son of that surgeon. No, sometimes there's evil, and where God does not rule, He overrules. And sometimes the things that God does, they don't seem to be good to us, but they are good. Young Joseph, seventeen years he was suffering. His brothers had sold him into slavery. You remember the caravan of Ishmaelite's came, and bought young Joseph. He's carried into Egypt, and there he's lied upon by Potiphar's wife and he languishes in prison, but he finally becomes the prime minister of Egypt.

And here's a great verse for you. Genesis chapter 50 and verse 20. Joseph is talking later to his brothers, "But as for you, ye thought evil against me, but God meant it unto good, to bring to pass as it is this day to save much people alive". It was God that brought that caravan of slave traders. It was God that caused the famine in Israel. And it was God who overruled the lie of Potiphar's wife. Friend, listen to me very carefully. Don't read Romans 8:28 to say that all things are good. All things are not good. There's some terrible things in this world. The point is not that things are good; it is that God is good. That it is God that is good.

As a matter of fact, put in your margin Ephesians 1 verse 11. It says, "Being predestinated, according to the purpose of Him who worketh all things after the counsel of His own will". And so, here's the first thing I want you to write down. Put this down. Look, I am graced with His purpose; I'm going to be like Jesus. Number two, I am guided by His providence, God is working all things together. That word working is the Greek word that we get our English word synergy from. There is a synergy of divine energy where God is working all things together for good. And Robert Ketchum said, "God is too good to be unkind and too wise to make a mistake".

Now here's the third thing I want you to write down. We're trying to answer the question, "Why do good things happen to bad people"? Well number one, I'm graced by His purpose; He's going to make me like Jesus. Number two, I am guided by His providence; He is working all things together for my good and His glory. Number three; write down, I am guarded by His power, I am guarded by His power. Now look in Romans 8 verse 31, "What shall we say, then, to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us"?

Now there're a lot of people who would like to be against you. Don't get the idea that this world will honor you if you serve the Lord Jesus. This world will break your neck if it can. But just remember this, "If God be for you, if God be for you," and that word for literally has the idea there of God being in your place, He died for you, He died as your substitute. It doesn't only mean that if God is on your side, it literally means if God is in your place. "If God be for you," if God is your substitute in the Lord Jesus Christ, if He is in your place, "who can be against you"? Think about it; whoever comes against you is really coming against the One who stands for you.

Now Satan wants you to doubt. Satan wants you to have questions in your mind. Did you know that Satan loves to put questions in your mind? Did you know Satan loves to ask questions, insinuating questions? The first time, as we see him in the Garden of Eden, as he crawls his slimy, corroding path unto the pages of history. He says to Eve, "Yeah, 'Hath God said?'" It's a question. It was a question that was to inculcate doubt in the heart and the mind of Eve. "Hath God said"? Why, he even has the audacity to ask God questions, insinuating ques, "'Doth Job serve God for naught?'"

I'd like to ask the devil some questions. I'm going to give you five questions right now out of the Word of God. Five questions the devil cannot answer. Now what we're talking about is that we are guarded by God's power, and when you see these five questions that Satan cannot answer, then you're going to say, "Thank God, hallelujah, no matter what happens, I know that God is watching over me".

All right, look, here's the first question in Romans 8 verse 31, "What shall we say to these things, if God be for us, who can be against us"? That is question number one. Write down no intimidation, no intimidation. Remember, God is in our place. Jesus died for us. And so when Satan comes to intimidate us, he's literally coming against God Himself. I really enjoyed this Scripture. Isaiah 41 beginning in verse 13 and verse 14, "For I the Lord thy God will hold thy right hand, saying unto thee, 'Fear not, for I will help thee,'" now watch this, "'fear not thou worm,'" W-O-R-M, "'thou worm Jacob and ye men of Israel. I will help thee,' saith the Lord and thy Redeemer, the Holy one of Israel".

Now that's a pretty good partnership, God and a worm. Friend, I tell you what. I'd rather be a worm with God on my side than be a bull elephant all by myself, hadn't you? He says, "Don't be afraid, little worm, I am with you"! God is with you! Now, listen, devil, I want to ask you a question, "If God be for me, who can be against me"? That's the idea. If God is in my place, I may be a worm, but He's the Almighty. Second question I want to ask the devil, and it's found in Romans 8 verse 32, look at it, "He that spared not His own Son but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things"?

Devil, I want to ask you that question. Put down, dear friend, not only no intimidation, no deprivation, no deprivation. I mean, listen, if God gave Jesus, I don't have to doubt any more promises. I mean, if He loved me enough to give His Son. I want you to see the logic of what Paul is talking about. Paul has great logic. He says, listen to Romans 8:32 again, "For if He that spared not His own Son but delivered Him up freely for us all, how shall He not also with Him freely give us all things"? Now, friend, if He would give the great gift of Jesus while we were sinners, what's He going to do for us now that we're His children? If He gave the great gift when we didn't even ask, what will He give for the asking? I mean, if He gave Jesus, would He withhold anything else?

If you were to say to me, "Adrian, can I have your son? I want to take your firstborn, Steve". "What do you want to do with Steve"? "Well, I want to lie on him, beat him, abuse him, strip him naked and nail him to a cross, that's what I want to do with him". "No, you can't have my son. No! You can't have my son". But suppose I loved you enough for whatever reason I said, "Yes, you can have my son". And then you said, "And can I have his basketball and his bicycle also and his blue jeans"? I say, "Are you kidding? If I'd give you my son, do you think I'd withhold the basketball, the bicycle, and the blue jeans"? Friend, "He who spared not His own Son, how shall He not also with Him freely give us all things"? I mean, if God gave the first gift, the best gift, everything else comes with Jesus, and there is no intimidation! "If God be for us, who can be against us"? Romans 8:31. There is no deprivation!

Now here's another question I want to ask you, Mr. Devil, here's the third question. It's found in Romans 8 verse 33, look at it, "Who shall lay anything to the charge of God's elect"? Write down, no incrimination, no incrimination. You know, the devil would like to blame you. "He's the accuser of the brethren". Revelation 12:10. Now it doesn't say who would like to charge us. It literally means who is qualified to do so. Satan will try. Revelation chapter 12 verse 10 says, "He is the accuser of the brethren".

But, friend, how can we be condemned, who can lay any charge against us, when Colossians 2:14 tells us that He took all those things out of the way and nailed them to the cross, and when He died, He said, "Paid in full," and God will never bring us into double jeopardy and, "Blessed is the man to whom the Lord will not impute sin". Romans chapter 4 and verse 8. So now watch, look at it. No intimidation, "If God be for us who can be against us"? No deprivation. If Jesus died for us, "How shall He not also with Him freely give us all things"? Watch it, no incrimination, "Who is he that can lay any charge to us"? Nobody, nobody can lay a charge against any child of God.

And then here's another question I want to ask Mr. Devil. It's found in Romans 8 verse 34, "Who is he that condemneth"? Paul is full of questions, isn't he? I love these questions, "Who is he that condemneth"? Write down no condemnation, no condemnation. Now there're a lot of people who'll try to condemn you. Have you ever been told to; "Go to Hell"? Live long enough, somebody'll tell you that. Come up close, I want to tell you something. You don't have to. You don't have to! Why? Because this chapter begins in Romans 8:1, "There's therefore no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus". We have been saved.

You see, the only one who would be qualified to condemn us is the One who died for us, and the Bible says in Hebrews 7 verse 25, "He ever lives to make intercession for us". And, certainly the One who died for us and makes intercession for us is the only One who could possibly condemn us. And He is not going to condemn us. Because it's very clear here in the Word of God, in Romans chapter 8 verses 33 and 34, "Who shall lay anything to the charge of God's elect? It's God that justifieth. Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea, rather that is risen again, who's even at the right hand of God who also maketh intercession for us". Do you know if somebody tells me to, "Go to Hell," do you know why I'm not going? Because there's One with a nail pierced hand at the right hand of the Father praying daily for me. And, "He ever lives to make intercession," for me.

All right, now, here's the fifth question the old devil can't answer, and I love these questions. Who shall separate us? Look if you will in Romans 8 verse 35, "Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation or distress or persecution or famine or nakedness or peril or sword"? Devil, what can separate me from the love of Christ? Satan says, "Oh, I'll tell you what can do it. Tribulation can do it, distress can do it, persecution can do it, famine can do it, nakedness can do it, peril can do it, sword can do it". I say, "Devil, you're bluffing; nothing can do it".

He doesn't say these things are not going to happen to us. They happened to Paul, they may happen to you, but these things don't separate you from the love of Christ, they draw you all the closer to the Lord. Now you think about these five questions. I'm talking now, dear friend, about the fact that we're guarded by His power. There is no intimidation, there's no deprivation, there's no incrimination, there's no condemnation, there's no separation, and God's people said, Amen. Listen, folks, this is why good things happen to bad people. It is called the grace of Almighty God.

Now, let's move on to the last of these four truths I want to write upon your heart. Number one; I am graced by God's purpose. Number two; I am guided by God's providence. Number three; I am guarded by God's power. Number four; I am gladdened by God's presence. Look if you will in Romans 8 verses 38 and 39. Paul dips his pen in golden glory right here. I mean, Romans 8 is the heart of the whole thing, friend, and this is the climax of the heart, right here. Look at it, "For I am persuaded," here he is, here's the old apostle Paul, he's coming to the end now, folks. Nothing has ever been written in all literature more glorious than this, "For I am persuaded that neither death nor life nor angels nor principalities nor powers nor things present nor things to come nor height nor depth nor any other creature shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus, our Lord".

No matter where, the darkest night, the most lonely road, death can't separate me from His love, life can't separate me, angels, principalities, powers, things present, things to come, heighth, depth, and in case he left out anything, nor any other creature. Friend, when you have sorrow and sickness, He's there. He's never stopped loving you. Paul does not say that these things will not happen. He's saying in Romans 8:37, "No, in all of these things, not in the absence of all of these things, but in all of these things we're more than conquerors," Not that we kick a field goal the last three seconds. Super conquerors in all of these things. Many will have cancer before you die. You'll go to the doctor, and the doctor will say, "You have cancer".

I want to tell you some things that cancer cannot do. Let me tell you what cancer cannot do. Cancer cannot cripple love. Cancer cannot shatter hope. Cancer cannot corrode faith. Cancer cannot eat away peace. Cancer cannot destroy confidence. Cancer cannot kill friendship. Cancer cannot shut out memories. Cancer cannot silence courage. Cancer cannot evade the soul. Cancer cannot reduce eternal life. Cancer cannot quench the Spirit of God. And cancer cannot lessen the power of the resurrection. That's how limited cancer is, friend. I want to tell you, "Death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present nor things to come nor heighth nor depth nor any other creature shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord".

Isn't that great news? You know, the Indians, when a young boy would come to the age when it was time for him to become a brave, to go from a little boy into a young brave, they, in some Indian tribes, they would do this. They would take that boy out into the deep forest where there were wild animals and predators, and they would draw a circle on the ground out there in the middle of the forest. And there they'd take that little Indian boy out there and they'd put him in that circle. And they would say, "Son, you are to stay in that circle by yourself in these deep woods all night long". Then they would go off, and the little boy would be there in the circle. He could hear the coyotes, the hoot owls; he could hear the screeches of the wild creatures out there and he's there, surrounded by all of that danger, by himself, in that circle, forbidden to leave that circle.

And the little Indian boy would get on the ground and just tremble and quiver and whimper and cry, till finally about two in the morning he'd drop off to sleep, out of sheer exhaustion. And in the morning, when the sun would come up, that Indian boy would look up and there standing outside that circle with a drawn bow would be his father, who'd been there all night long watching over him. And friend, there's a circle, it's the circle of God's grace, the circle of God's love. God means you no harm. He wants to grow you. But I'll tell you, standing outside that circle is Almighty God, our Father, watching over us.

Aren't you glad that good things can happen to bad people like we are? That we're graced with His purpose. He's going to make us like Jesus. We're guided by His providence, "That all things are working together for good to those who love God". Oh, precious friend, we are guarded by His power! And there're five questions the devil can't answer, because of the power of God. And we're gladdened with His presence, for, "There's nothing that can separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord". Glory, Hallelujah!

Let's bow our heads in prayer. Heads are bowed and eyes are closed. Now, friend, I've been talking to the children of God today, to those who love God, the ones who are called according to His purpose. And I believe right now that there're some of you who say, "I want to step into the circle of God's love. I want to be His child; I want to receive Him as my Lord and Savior". If you do, I'd like to lead you in a prayer. While heads are bowed and eyes are closed, would you right now pray this prayer out of your heart if you want to know Jesus. Now if you're not sincere it won't do you any good at all. But if you're sincere, don't let your weakness or your fear keep you from praying, because He loves you, He died for sinners. He didn't die for good people, He died for people like we are. And good things can happen to bad people when they trust Jesus. Would you pray:

Dear God, I'm a sinner. My sin deserves judgment but I want mercy. Jesus, I believe You're the Son of God. I believe You paid for my sin with Your blood on the cross. I believe that God raised You from the dead. And You promised to save me if I would trust You. I do trust You, (tell Him that), I do trust You right now with all of my heart. Come into my heart, Lord Jesus. (Pray that prayer) come into my heart, Lord Jesus. Forgive my sin. Cleanse me. Save me. (Pray that from the depth of your heart) Save me, Lord Jesus. (Pray it) Save me, Lord Jesus.

Did you ask Him? Then pray this prayer:

Thank You for doing it. I don't look for a sign, I don't ask for a feeling. I stand on Your Word. You're now my Lord, my Savior, and my Master, my God, my Friend. Begin now to make me what You want me to be, and give me the courage to make it public. (Pray that) Give me the courage to make it public. Don't let me be ashamed of You. In Your name I pray, Amen.

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