The past two Wednesday nights the Youth have been studying the doctrine of general revelation. This doctrine is extremely important for young Christians to know. This doctrine helps us to understand just how important it is to go out and share the gospel.
Imagine a far-fetched scenario where a baby falls off a cruise ship, the baby somehow gets to shore, the baby somehow lives, and now he is a full-grown man on this island (We call him Moti…Man On The Island). Moti is all by himself. He has never had contact with any other human beings. There’s never been a boat, a plane, or even a bottle that has contacted him. Let’s say he is going to die tomorrow (and he doesn’t know it). Where will he go? Heaven or hell? And why? That is one of the most important questions we can ask that will tell us what we personally believe about God, Jesus, sin, salvation, humanity, eternity, etc. This is called “The Doctrine of General Revelation” which is the biblical study of how God’s universe reveals Himself and His character to everyone, everywhere, and at all times so that they are held accountable and without excuse. General revelation teaches us that there is no such thing as an atheist. All people have knowledge of God because He has shown himself through nature (Romans 1:18-25), and because He has made Himself known all men are responsible for their sin and will be held accountable to God, no matter if they ever hear the gospel or not.
There are really three main schools of thought on what happens to Moti when he dies.
1. Universalism – This is the belief that “love wins” and because God loves everyone, everyone goes to heaven no matter what they did or did not do on earth. This belief is heretical nonsense and has been taught to your students as heretical nonsense so that when someone tries to tell them that universalism is true (and they will!) your student can recognize the heretical nonsense!
2. Inclusivism – This belief states that as long as you believe in something (whatever you perceive God to be whether that is Allah, Buddha, a rock, a tree, or the sun), that is good enough for God. So if Moti worships the Sun because he thinks it is God he will go to heaven. This is obviously heretical nonsense because Jesus said He is the ONLY way to The Father, and Peter said in Acts 4:12 that salvation comes only by the Name of Jesus!
3. Exclusivism – This is the only view that is NOT heretical nonsense. Exclusivism is the belief that salvation comes through Jesus alone. One must KNOW Jesus and BELIEVE in Jesus for salvation. As stated in the previous section John 14:6 tells us that Jesus is the only way.
Some may say this is unfair but what part of life is fair? The only reason we think it is not fair is because our minds have been perverted with sin. If you read Romans 1:18-25 you will find that everyone knows that there is a God and that everyone has decided to worship creation instead of the Creator. We have broken the world through our sin and now for us who have been shown the truth of God’s word and have been shown the beauty of the Gospel we must take this message to the whole world so that Moti may here the gospel and be saved.
Here are some prompting questions you can ask your students to start some gospel conversations:
What was your first response to the scenario? Did you think MOTI (Man on the Island) would go to heaven or hell? Why? Based on what?
How do you think all your other Christian friends would answer this question? Why would they answer that way?
How do you think all of your non-Christian friends would answer this question? And why would they answer that way?
What is the definition of an atheist?
Answer: Someone who says that they do not believe in God.
What is the definition of an agnostic?
Answer: Someone who is unsure whether or not there is a God.
What does God say in Romans 1 about Atheism? Is it even possible?
Answer: NO! Atheism is not possible everyone knows that there is a God but they suppress the truth that
God exists. Ultimately they just don’t want God.
How many “atheists” do you know? How many go to your school? Are you close friends with any?
How is the church today treating atheists?
How could the church today do a better job of befriending atheists to tell them more about the gospel Jesus Christ?
How could we as a family do a better job today of attacking atheism and loving atheists to Jesus?
How could you as a Christian engage more conversations with more atheists so that over time God would show them His love, His Son, His salvation, and the eternal life He is offering them?
Parents if you need more resources or just want to talk about these topics do not hesitate to come talk to me at the office, give me a call/text, or email me! YOU are the primary ministers to your kids, I’m here to help/equip you to do that!
Love you guys and Praying for you!
Trevor Williams is the Lead Pastor at Ector Baptist Church in Ector, TX.