Question Text Can you help me with two issues. 1) What exactly did Jesus mean by `i never knew you` when casting those who believed they served him into hell. 2)How can anyone who has not yet received the holy spirit, therefore a carnal being, make the decision that he or she understands and believes the gospel which is surely a spiritual decision and if God does something in advance to remove the barrier of being deceived by the God of this world in the mind of some people, why not all?? please help,,thanks.
Answer Text The answer to your first question is that relationship with the Master is more important than service to the Master. There are ever so many who pretend to serve Him with out ever knowing Him in person. There are so many in the world today who believe in the gospel with out ever repenting while the clearest statement of the gospel is to repent and believe in the gospel (Mk.1:15). It is repentance towards God and faith towards Christ which makes a person a true child of God (Acts 20:21). Look at the Laodecian church. They are a church, alright! Yet Christ is standing out side and knocking for an entry (Rev.3:20)!! The Bible is written so that we KNOW that we have eternal life (1Jn.5:13). Tragically many who serve Him today do not KNOW for sure whether they are saved or not!! So, any one serving Christ must make sure that he/she has a right relationship with Christ to begin with. Otherwise they would face the same words one day being uttered to them like those others who thought they were serving Him as well!!
Your second question needs a little clarification. You talk about any one who has not received the Holy Spirit as being carnal. This is not what the Bible teaches. Any one who has not received the Holy Spirit is said to be a `natural man` (1Cor.2:14). It is the natural men who can not understand the things of God. On the other hand, carnal men are those who are born again children of God who never bothered to feed themselves daily with the Word of God and therefore have not grown and live like the natural men(1Cor.3:1-3).
Ok. I am sure, your problem is about natural men who are not able to understand the things of God. The Bible clearly states that no one can ever come to Christ unless the Father draws him (Jn.6:44). And it is the Spirit of God who convicts the world of sin, of judgment and of righteousness (Jn.16:8). Unless God the Holy Spirit convicts a person, and unless the Father draws that person to Christ, none can ever come to Christ. This is why INTERCESSION is most important in all our evangelistic activities. The one who presents the gospel must simultaneously pray that the Spirit of God will convict that person and the Father will draw him/her to Christ.
Evangelism with out prayer is cultivation with out water. Here the intercessor is entering into real spiritual warfare as he is trying to plunder the goods of the enemy (Lk.11:21,22). Some times the strongholds of the enemy where he has trapped them are very strong (1Cor.10:3,4). Unless these strongholds are demolished, those trapped inside can never see the light of the gospel (2Cor.4:4). That is why we are commanded to continue steadfastly in earnest prayers, praying always in spirit (Eph.6:18) for those who are preaching the gospel (Eph.6:19-20). This truth is amply illustrated by the history of the church. The early church in Acts was a praying church. The result was that the then known world was saturated with the gospel. When ever, where ever there was a praying church millions turned to Christ. The times of Wesley, Moody, Finny and others in history who made such impact in church history were simply because there was a movement of prayer associated with them. God is not partial. Even today such things can happen if there are individuals and churches who are willing to obey the clear commands of the NT about striving in prayer (Rom.15:30-32). These verses in Romans clearly tell us that God’s perfect will can ONLY be achieved by striving in prayer. May the Lord give us grace. To His Name be all glory. Amen,