|Posted by Bethanny Lawson on January 12, 2016 at 2:40 PM|
“My name is so and so and I believe in Jesus Christ... He said deny me in front of your peers and I will deny you in front of my Father. If you are not ashamed put your name in place of mine and make it your status. #facebookchallenge.”
If you haven't seen this post going around on Facebook, then you probably don't get on Facebook a whole bunch. Tons of people share it, and after all it isn't a difficult thing to do. Just click copy and paste, then everyone gets to know you're a Christian and you won't be denied by Jesus in front of God the Father at the judgment seat.
Wait... so if you post this, He won't deny you. But if you don't post it, He will deny you? Hold up. Where in the Bible does it say that if I don't post this thing on Facebook, Jesus will deny me in front of the Father? I'd really like to see that verse, because this post and everyone who shares it is suggesting that if I don't share it also, I won't be joining you all in Heaven.
Really? Yes. Do you know what that little word “deny” means? It's something along the lines of Jesus saying “depart from me ye workers of iniquity, for I never knew you.” It's a public and eternal denouncement from the only person who could ever save us.
I think sharing the Christian faith is great. Not only that, I believe it is our highest and only important calling in life. Facebook is a great way to share things quickly with other people. But you know what? I haven't shared this post. And I'm not going to. And I'm also going to go to Heaven anyway. How do I know?
For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.
This Facebook post is like hoping you'll be saved by going to church every Sunday. The only thing that saves is faith in Jesus Christ, and the only thing that damns to hell is unbelief in Jesus Christ.* It's that simple.
For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world: but that the world through him might be saved. He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
To be fair, the Bible does talk about denying Jesus before men in Matthew 10:33. “But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven.” However, I am not denying Christ by not sharing a Facebook status. Peter denied Jesus when he was asked three times, publicly, if he knew Jesus and replied that no, he did not. I may not be sharing your status, but I'm also not posting that I don't believe in Jesus to save face. And Peter was an apostle of Christ. He went on to serve Jesus and then die for his faith after Jesus left earth. Do you think he's in hell even for his public denying of Christ? I'll let you answer that for yourselves.
I'm not ashamed of my faith, or of my God and Savior. I will gladly proclaim that I am a follower of Jesus Christ. I will gladly share scripture that is in context and discuss it with friends. I will gladly share the gospel with those who don't know Christ as Savior. But I will not participate in the #facebookchallenge because I refuse to guilt trip my friends into sharing a post that has no value, worth, or purpose (or fantastic grammar by the way) and I definitely refuse to suggest to anyone that their salvation and eternal destiny rests on whether or not they share the post.
Salvation is not through works, it is through faith. Sharing a Facebook post does not save you, just as not sharing it does not damn you to hell. If you are insecure in your faith, and worry about being denied by Jesus if you do not share it, spend some more time with God. Develop a relationship with Him so that you can trust Him, because there's no other person in the universe and beyond more trustworthy than God, no one else who deserves as much trust from you as Him. If He says faith saves you, you can believe that faith will save you. Because not only is He trustworthy, but He loves you.
My name is Bethanny Lawson, and my salvation is based on my faith in Jesus Christ alone, not on a Facebook post. And neither is yours.
All scriptures quoted are from the KJV Bible
*The Bible says that all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. People go to Hell because of their sins against the holy law of God and their failure to meet His standards for living. Unbelief in Jesus is the only thing that can damn a person to Hell because our sins have no power over us after we have been washed in the blood of Jesus. If sin alone sent people to Hell, not a person would make it to Heaven. Sins plus unbelief equal a destiny in Hell.