Afraid of the Gospel
We all have an aversion to certain things. Perhaps it is a dislike of a certain sort of food, or a particular kind of music, sport or recreation that other people find enjoyable. The aversion can be so strong that it actually takes the form of a fear. If that fear is not a rational one, it is termed a ‘phobia’. For example, there is ‘agoraphobia’, the fear of open spaces, and its opposite ‘claustrophobia’, a dread of confined spaces.
In addition to these familiar phobias we are now hearing of new ones, which are of a very different sort. You will have noticed how we are being warned constantly about the dangers of ‘homophobia’, ‘islamophobia’, and so on. Such terms must be challenged. To have a dislike – or indeed a fear – of unnatural sexual unions or of false religions is not irrational but eminently sensible. It is a wholesome thing to abhor what is morally and spiritually wrong, and indeed soul-destroying. It is wise also to be wary of those who are involved such things – while at the same time showing them
the love of Christ and doing all that we can for their good. Sadly these modern ‘sins’ are well on the way to being made crimes in our land, and punishable by law. It is part of an attempt by an ungodly establishment and powerful elite to construct a new, man-made morality to replace the old, God-given, biblical one. The attempt must be resisted.
These moves are really symptoms of the problem which is common to our race. Deep in the heart and mind of fallen man there lurks an ancient fear. It is a quite irrational one, and very revealing. People are afraid of the gospel. Many do not want to hear it at all. How can we explain this?
Unbelievers know that there is a God, for creation, providence and conscience all testify to this greatest of all facts. As the apostle Paul states, “That which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them” (Rom.1:19). However they live in denial of this fundamental truth, determined to carry on with their worldly, sinful lives.
The Bible can make sinners afraid when they read it or listen to it. They learn of God’s holy law and their accountability to Him. They are called to leave their sins and warned of a day of reckoning. People know that the Bible is true but they love their sin; Paul says that they “hold the truth in unrighteousness” (v.18). Sinners will seize upon anything which will give some intellectual credibility or moral respectability to their denial of God’s word. They invent a morality of their own – one tolerant of everything except absolute truth and strict righteousness – to quieten their conscience.
Fear of the Bible is often at its most severe when sinners are faced with the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ. Jesus said: “every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved” (John 3:19,20). The self-righteous hate any exposure of their sins that makes them feel ashamed. The law reveals our sins, but in another way so does the gospel; we see what man’s sin did to the sinless Son of God: Jesus suffered on the cross in the place of the guilty and hell-deserving.
Are you still trying to hide from what you know to be the truth – the truth about God, yourself and Jesus Christ? Beware of ‘gospelphobia’: Calvary is good news for sinners, indeed the best news! Christ died to put away sin and bring His people to heaven. Pray that God would give you grace to truly repent of your sins and believe on this precious Saviour.