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Stats: 2,163,302 members, 4,713,593 topics. Date: Wednesday, 23 January 2019 at 10:25 AM
|Sin Is At The Heart Of The Gospel By Deji Yesufu by VBCampaign: 11:16am On Dec 30, 2018|
Sin is at the Heart of the Christian Gospel
By: Deji Yesufu
A Muslim lady had died and a friend of hers pasted the following words on Facebook.
“She lived an exemplary life worthy of emulation and deserving of Jannah. After a long fought battle and (as) the time was near (for her to die), she mustered all her energy and said her last audible words ‘la hawla wala kuwwata illa billah (there is no might nor power except with Allah) repeatedly 10 times… O Allah, let (lady’s name) be deserving of Jannah and we pray it is Firdaus. Do forgive her of her sins, overlook her shortcomings and grant her Jannatul Firdaus.”
Those words are quite commonly said for the dead when Muslims die. This time, reading this one, it got me thinking very deeply about the fundamentals of the Christian faith and how, somehow as Christians, we have drifted away from them. In the same manner, therefore, Christians have been unable to commend the gospel to our neighbours. Particularly to our Muslim friends.
In this essay, I wish to compare the statement above with something the Apostle Paul said in the Bible. I would be gleaning similarities and differences in their words and then I would try to reach a conclusion. This article would be first of a many part series I would be discussing in this column as I share along the lines of the fundamentals of the Christian faith and how to make them relevant to our day.
Paul, writing to the Roman Christians and telling them about the blessing of justification by faith, stated this:
“Blessed are those whose lawless deeds are forgiven, and whose sins are covered; blessed is the man against whom the Lord will not count his sin.” – Romans 4:7-8.
One clear similarity between that statement I gleaned from Facebook and the words of Paul is this: sin would be a fundamental factor between man and God, whenever we see him – which would most certainly be at the time of our death. Orthodox Christianity and Islam share the fundamental question of how God relates with sin. Sin would determine whether or not the dead would enter into eternal bliss with God in heaven or else be in eternal perdition in hell.
Despite the similarity in belief, there are fundamental differences between these two historic faiths. This article would not attempt to discuss the nitty-gritty of those differences. What I wish to do is examine only one of them in the light of the Christian message and then suggest why the Christian faith offers greater hope for both the living and the dead in this life and in the life to come.
The simple difference between that statement off Facebook and the one quoted from the Bible is this: the Muslim statement is asking for forgiveness AFTER the person is dead. While the Christian statement offers forgiveness while the person is alive.
The Christian message offers humanity genuine hope in the light of our sins. Christianity recognizes the helplessness of all human beings in the light of our bondage to sin. The Christian gospel does not wait for men to die before forgiveness of sin is sort for them; the gospel offers us hope in this life in spite of our sin. This is how it works.
All human beings, born into this world, are sinners. We are all at enmity with the God of all the earth – the one we shall all answer to in spite of our creed and religion. Nevertheless, there is a way God has offered out of sin; there is a “solution” so to speak for sin. Paul in Romans 4:7-8 tells us what becomes of sin after this solution is applied. First, the individual’s lawless deeds are forgiven. Second, the individuals sins are covered. Third, God would not count the individual’s sins against him. All of these does not happen after death; it happens while the person is alive!
Paul refers to this as true blessing. He uses the story of Abraham and how he gained favour with God to validate his point. It is said that Abraham believed God and God counted his faith as righteousness. God looked at his ability to trust him, and not his ability to do things, as his righteousness. This is the most profound truth of the Christian gospel and it is a disservice to many that these things are no longer taught in our churches.
What then is the basis of this faith in God? This faith that brings righteousness. This faith that produces a blessedness that expunges and covers sin. What is this faith about? This faith is belief in the Lord Jesus Christ. Scriptures says if you do, you would be saved (Acts 16:31). Unfortunately this is where Islam and Christianity depart from each other fundamentally. But until someone can show me that I can find hope and salvation from my sins in another way better than the one the Bible teaches, I would rather stick with a gospel that offers me hope of salvation in this life; than wait for one that suggests a possible hope to me when I am dead.
I want to end this essay with a plea: a kind of disclaimer. It is not my intention to raise up theological arguments. I am very aware that Muslim and Christian scholars have debated these issues for so long. I listened to a few of these debates myself. However, I am not sure that many of them have touched on this fundamental matter of sin and salvation.
Muslims quite rightly say, as they pray for the dead, that may God grant forgiveness to the sins of the dead. I however find this prayer unnecessary when the Bible quite clearly states that we can find certainty of forgiveness for our sins in this life and not have to wait for an uncertain forgiveness of sins after our lives are gone.
Romans 4:7-8 is a prayer I utter to God everyday of my life now. Daily I thank God for forgiving me my sins through Jesus Christ. I thank him for covering my sins – particularly those I am unable to confess readily in the place of prayer. Finally I have a relationship with God, through Jesus, which even my sins cannot spoil – God does not hold my sins against me. This is why I am blessed indeed.
One other reason why I pray this prayer is so that in health I can exercise myself in a confession that I trust God I would make at the point of my death. In my final hours on earth, I trust God to make these confessions:
“O Lord, I thank you for forgiving me my sins through Jesus Christ your Son. I thank you for covering my sins with his blood and I thank you for not holding my sins against me, both in this life and in the life to come.”
This is the blessedness of the Christian life and every human being living can partake of it.
Deji Yesufu is the author of the book Victor Banjo. He can be reached on email@example.com
|Re: Sin Is At The Heart Of The Gospel By Deji Yesufu by VBCampaign: 11:17am On Dec 30, 2018|
Consider for front page this Sunday: Seun, Lalasticlala, Mynd44
|Re: Sin Is At The Heart Of The Gospel By Deji Yesufu by Abjay97(m): 11:42am On Dec 30, 2018|
Thanks for this
|Re: Sin Is At The Heart Of The Gospel By Deji Yesufu by VBCampaign: 2:22pm On Dec 30, 2018|
|Re: Sin Is At The Heart Of The Gospel By Deji Yesufu by MuttleyLaff: 4:25pm On Dec 30, 2018|
VBCampaign:Whats all this sucking up for front page?
It's a complete turn off ojaare.
Please make it the last time you stop all that nonsense and gimmick already
If the thread and posted content is read worthy enough, it will find itself on front page by its own merit and without begging for a leg up.
That said and now gotten off the chest, I'll like to drawn your attention to the below remark asserted by you:
"One clear similarity between that statement I gleaned from Facebook and the words of Paul (i.e. Romans 4:7-8.) is this:
sin would be a fundamental factor between man and God, whenever we see him – which would most certainly be at the time of our death"
Increasingly, day by day and over time you start to learn and know that what rightly shakes the table, is pure and true religion that's faultless.
Pure and true religion that is faultless, is what's used by God, to at the end of the day, separate the wheat from the chaff with.
I dont want to fall out with you but in all sincerity and honesty, anything said short, of the pure and true religion that's faultless truth, is playing to the gallery
If that lady, really lived an exemplary life worthy of emulation, then there is no unlikelihood, she didnt live as a wheat.
Need I say more?. Need I go on?.
|Re: Sin Is At The Heart Of The Gospel By Deji Yesufu by VBCampaign: 8:23pm On Dec 30, 2018|
The intent of mentioning the moderators of this forum is not to "suck up" to them. It is merely to draw their attention to a post they are not likely to see if they are not mentioned. I apologize if the practice turns you off but I have no intention of stopping it; especially where it has not been spelt out anywhere that I am breaking forum rules by doing so.
|Re: Sin Is At The Heart Of The Gospel By Deji Yesufu by MuttleyLaff: 9:30pm On Dec 30, 2018|
VBCampaign:You are not breaking forum rules by doing so, it just looks totally uncool "prostrating," literally.
If my tone was strong and coming off insensitive, please accept my apologies. It wasnt meant to be taken personal.
There however for your information is a "Mail Mods" button, that has a "Send E-mail Message to Religion Moderators" feature you can take advantage of, when aiming to get their attention to a post they ordinarily are not likely to see if they are not mentioned on posts.
By the way, I am looking forward to read your analysis on African Action Congress party's candidate Omoyele Sowore bid to contest for presidency in the upcoming 2019 Febuary election.
|Re: Sin Is At The Heart Of The Gospel By Deji Yesufu by Ranchhoddas(m): 9:55pm On Dec 30, 2018|
MuttleyLaff:This is not true. There is no meritocracy on this forum. Traffic is the major driver of FP and this thread does not look like a traffic puller.
Nairaland is style over substance. A thread showing P-Squares's living room has made FP about three times this year and is currently there. (Same pictures ooo).
How do you explain the fact that threads involving murdered reptiles always get to FP? Is it because they are "read worthy" enough?
|Re: Sin Is At The Heart Of The Gospel By Deji Yesufu by MuttleyLaff: 10:09pm On Dec 30, 2018|
Ranchhoddas:You've just with all this, reinforced the point.
P-Squares's living room made FP about three times this year, without the poster publicly begging for front page
You knocked and hit the nail on the head. Yes, threads involving murdered reptiles always get to FP because they are "read worthy" enough
If Nairaland is style over substance, then begging wont make a difference
The god of Nairaland often puts threads on front page because they merit it and does it without instances of prior begging for a leg up.
|Re: Sin Is At The Heart Of The Gospel By Deji Yesufu by Ranchhoddas(m): 10:12pm On Dec 30, 2018|
MuttleyLaff:I know anytime I quote you I'm asking for trouble.
Define "read worthy enough".
|Re: Sin Is At The Heart Of The Gospel By Deji Yesufu by MuttleyLaff: 10:20pm On Dec 30, 2018|
Ranchhoddas:"read worthy enough" is relative.
What is "read worthy enough" for me is not "read worthy enough" for P-Square/murdered reptiles enthusiasts or vice versa
I am not fascinated by P-Square/murdered reptiles threads but for some its "read worthy enough" to them
|Re: Sin Is At The Heart Of The Gospel By Deji Yesufu by Ranchhoddas(m): 10:34pm On Dec 30, 2018|
This is why it is sometimes necessary to beg the mods. It's a way of making them take a be
second look at your thread since they might discard it on their own account of "read worthiness".
|Re: Sin Is At The Heart Of The Gospel By Deji Yesufu by MuttleyLaff: 10:41pm On Dec 30, 2018|
Ranchhoddas:There however for your information is a "Mail Mods" button, that has a "Send E-mail Message to Religion Moderators" feature that can be taken advantage of, when aiming to get their attention to a post they ordinarily are not likely to see if they are not mentioned on posts.
You can grovel in camera to your heart's content with the "Mail Mods" button and then the "Send E-mail Message to Religion Moderators" feature and no third party will be aware you shamelessly begged.
|Re: Sin Is At The Heart Of The Gospel By Deji Yesufu by VBCampaign: 8:26am On Dec 31, 2018|
I've written a no of articles on Swore. The last one were I ended my support for him is this one: http://mouthpiece.com.ng/apc-pdp-and-others/
You can see others by searching on the same website
|Re: Sin Is At The Heart Of The Gospel By Deji Yesufu by MuttleyLaff: 8:48am On Dec 31, 2018|
VBCampaign:Oh thank you.
I didnt know you already have. I cant wait to quickly dash over there to read it. Usually I dont normally click on .com.ng sites but I'll make this one an exception
|Re: Sin Is At The Heart Of The Gospel By Deji Yesufu by MuttleyLaff: 9:02am On Dec 31, 2018|
VBCampaign, I am just back from reading those two articles, I was impressed and pleased to read that Omoyele Sowore personally reached out to you, soliciting for your support, it just shows the conviction, sense of seriousness, sincerity genuineness etcetera of the man.
I usually read about lists of 50 people of influence here and there or around the world, and it just brought it into perpestive that Sowore considered you to be a person with influence, reader followership and power that has similar best interest of the fatherland at heart. The earlier mentioned first two, Sowore especially recognised about you and that is why he so humbly approached you.
Nigeria cant afford to miss or squander a good, promising and golden opportunity, for another 4 years of mediocrity, analogue visions, indifferences to the plagues of the nation, leadership that isnt really taking the nation anywhere to be proud of etcetera.
Quite a lot has happened since and after your two articles, structures are up, town hall meetings visits to more than 35 states, loads of interviews to sensitise him with the electorate giving and explained in detail the party's manifesto on how SPICERHEAT will tackle and address the ills of the country, plans to make the country a construction site etcetera so why did you end your support for Sowore? What are your reasons? What, at the heart of the matter, are/were his sin(s)?
I dont what to know who you'll be thumb printing on February 16 but please God forbid your choice be between PMB or Atiku
|Re: Sin Is At The Heart Of The Gospel By Deji Yesufu by VBCampaign: 12:27pm On Dec 31, 2018|
Truth is that like many Nigerians I'm at a crossroad as to who to vote for. This morning I'm just considering Ezekwesili
|Re: Sin Is At The Heart Of The Gospel By Deji Yesufu by MuttleyLaff: 1:00pm On Dec 31, 2018|
VBCampaign:I can count on my hand how many times I've heard Oby speak, give TV interviews, participating in town hall meetings, sentising herself to the electorate. Not very much when compared wth Sowore's, so I am intrigued, what has Oby said this morning, that is swaying you towards her.
|Re: Sin Is At The Heart Of The Gospel By Deji Yesufu by Goshen360(m): 2:39pm On Dec 31, 2018|
I personally would like to consider Sowore if our system would allow us in the diaspora to vote and our vote will actually count. We just should stop recycling all these old politicians....my opinion though.
Btw, great article in the OP. Always good to read from you brother Deji Yesufu.
|Re: Sin Is At The Heart Of The Gospel By Deji Yesufu by MuttleyLaff: 3:42pm On Dec 31, 2018|
Goshen360:I am an evangelist professing the gospel of and according to Sowore at the slightest window of opportunity.
You want to see outside, 9 out of 10 people I come in to contact with I bring up the conversation about the political scene home and somehow drive it towards mentioning if any are aware of Sowore.
I met this OAP Matron 70 years old plus, after retiring from the Army back home, she bought a maisonette here to live in.
During our conversation upon a work visit to her, I slipped in, that has she ever heard about Sowore, her reply was in the negative. I told her, I actually wrote it down for on a piece of paper, I said here is his name, plonk it into Youtube, you'll see a lot of videos about him, ranging from visiting more tham 35 states doing Town Hall Meetings, answering questions from the public, doing TV channels and social media interviews.
Luckily and as God will have it, Mama Matron is internet surfing/computer savvy, she already has a personal tablet she surfs the internet internet on. I told her, as I normally tell others, watch all those YouTube videos on Sowore and pass on the good news, let it trickle down and all over to your whole network of influence. Let your friends know, your dependants know, your cat, dog even mouse too, your family and ... I mean let everyone sha know about him and AAC.
Watching Sowore's videos, just fires you up and also too renders you emotional, thinking that how did a promising potential great nation end up the way we've found ourselves. Its like going on a rollercoaster.
We are getting close to nail biting and crunching time. At the moment, you know we're in the middle of a train track, walking along on, inside this pitch black train tunnel, with a beacon of light showing and gleamering ahead at the end of the tunnel but then at the back of your mind, you know that the light symbolises Sowore as a glimmer of hope and that if not, then the light symbolises the headlamp of a high speed bullet train and means disaster, gloom and doom is looming ahead. May God help us.
God, not my will, but, please, Thy will be done
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|Re: Sin Is At The Heart Of The Gospel By Deji Yesufu by Goshen360(m): 8:04pm On Dec 31, 2018|
I stand with you 100% on this!
|Re: Sin Is At The Heart Of The Gospel By Deji Yesufu by VBCampaign: 6:52pm On Jan 11|
I used the "mail mode" option and got this thread to front-page
|Re: Sin Is At The Heart Of The Gospel By Deji Yesufu by MuttleyLaff: 7:57pm On Jan 11|
You havent yet said what Oby said that morning, that is swaying you towards her?
Also what is your take on her reason for going to Minna, paying Babaginda a visit?
Is she kneeling to Babangida, with her knees firmly on the floor at the end of that YouTube video?
|Re: Sin Is At The Heart Of The Gospel By Deji Yesufu by VBCampaign: 10:51pm On Jan 11|
I switch presidential candidates every week now. I trust God to have settled on one by the day of elections. No longer supporting oby.
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