What’s Wrong With The Gospel? By Keith Green – 18 – The “Poor Jesus” Syndrome 18 of 21

Keith Green

Keith Green

This is the form of preaching that misuses the Scripture in Rev 3:20, “Behold, I stand at the door and  knock . . . ” How many evangelists have used that Scripture to paint a pathetic picture of Jesus standing outside a door, waiting, knocking,  knocking, waiting, for the sinner to open up and let Jesus in? Sometimes these preachers go on and on, until it starts to sound like, “Aw,  poor Jesus is out there in the cold, shivering, waiting for someone to let Him in. Won’t you go ahead and let poor Jesus into your heart?”

What a line of reasoning. First of all, this statement by the Lord in Revelation is not to the unsaved, it’s to the Church in Laodicea (see Rev 3:14). The picture is truly pathetic. Jesus is standing outside of His own church, knocking for them to let Him in! (Sound familiar?) And if  there’s any doubt left as to who He’s talking to, look at Rev 3:22, “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit is saying to the  churches.”

Second of all, the truth of the matter for sinners is the exact opposite. Jesus is not outside of their world, knocking to come in – they are  outside of His Kingdom! And they can knock all night like the five foolish virgins (Mat 25:11), but Jesus will never let them in unless  they meet the requirements: a humble and contrite heart, and a complete disgust for sin. Then, and only then, will God deliver them  from their slavery to sin – and transfer them by His grace to the Kingdom of His lovingkindness. God will never repent for someone – He  will take every step possible to make the sinner see the folly of his ways, but the final move is up to the individual himself. Each person  must make the final surrender, the desperate gasp of “I am a fool to run my own life! Lord, show me the way to your door, and I’ll knock  and knock, and beg forgiveness …I’ll do anything, anything, ANYTHING YOU SAY!” Then, and only then, will God save a sinner.(Psa 34:18; Psa 51:17; Isa 66:22; Luk 18:14; Jam 4:10)


(Tomorrow I’ll post the 18th section)


About Dave Harman
I was found by Jesus April 9, 1975. I married the love of my life Helen, August 19, 1978. We have one daughter, Elizabeth, whose husband and two children live nearby. I was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis in January 1997. In January 2004, Jesus Christ healed me and I have been symptom free ever since.

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