Dear Collins (Backsliding Folk): After a powerful mid-week sermon, which was televised on your popular TV and radio station, my secretary gave me this strange looking envelope and upon opening it I saw your letter.
Your story is very interesting and unique, first and foremost you have never been a subject of my preaching. The scenarios I use in my sermons may look similar. It is never intended to humiliate you but to show God’s amazing love to his children.
As the Bible says, “Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come,” 2 Corinthians 5:17. You became a new creation and not even my junior pastors nor can I change that.
The problem now is how you can maintain your salvation, through the process of salvation is filled with long suffering and self-control. It’s a continuous process not a one off event the Bible says in Philippians 2:12-13 “So then, my beloved, just as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your salvation with fear and trembling; 13: for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure”
Stories in the Bible of Paul and Barnabas etc. show us how these Christians came out of adversity and became pillars in our faith. They never let society define for them their salvation.
Even though you have become a new creation your pass holds consequence and that is a scar you must learn to live with through your Christian life. With the help of the Holy Spirit you would navigate through it. Whatever you did cannot be erased from the minds of society but it does not mean the blood of Jesus has not washed it away.
As a Sunday school popular hymn goes “have you been to Jesus for the cleansing blood? Are you washed in the Blood of the lamp? Are your garments spotless are they white as snow? Are you washed in the blood of the lamp? Are fully trusting in His grace this hour?
If you lose sight of the grace of the Almighty then you will lose sight of mercies of the almighty that you have gained through salvation.
Have read the book Screw Tapes by C. S Lewis, there is a story of a young devil who has been assigned a new Christian to help him backslid, now his supervisor the senior devil gives him an advice which I feel is similar to your story. The old devil tells the new devil that, to make a young Christian lose his salvation he must let him see the hypocrisy in the church. He must always let the Christian think that everyone is talking about his past and let him feel like he has become a hypocrite just like the other old Christians living in the Church. He must also let the past sins of the new Christian haunt each day so he doubts himself of his salvation.
The story goes to show that salvation is not about others but rather the relationship you nurture with Jesus Christ. Never allow someone’s actions to hinder you from becoming what you have decided to become through the help of the Holy Spirit.
Jesus is the Cornerstone of the Church (1 Peter 2:6), and we are “like living stones . . . being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ” (1 Peter 2:5). Therefore as members of his holy nation we must be connected with each other through worships, and songs. The Church though may still not be perfect will allow you to have a connection with others like you holding each other’s hands and journeying through the Christian lifestyle.
Becoming a Christian means you have to place all your trust in Jesus Christ for salvation, now you have become a member of the body of Christ (1 Corinthians 12:27). For a church body to function properly, all of its “body parts” need to be present and working (1 Corinthians 12:14–20).
You are a unique member of this body and without your function the church will never become whole.
Josh Moody a Christian blogger said you must not stop coming to Church because it honors God. The church is the body for which God gave his blood (Acts 20:28). To be a regular, serving, contributing, giving, involved part of the church honors Jesus. It says to everyone and everything – the spiritual realm and the human – that Christ is higher, greater, better, more wonderful than absolutely all that there is.
Your story tells millions of the Love Jesus has to all mankind. When you come to church, and gather around the proclamation of the gospel through his Word, you are partaking in the “heavenly Jerusalem” and are telling everyone how much Jesus is worth (Hebrews 12:22).
Collins do not let my actions or inactions allow you to stop worshiping and serving God, remember the Son of God was shamed so you can lift your head in glory, he was beaten so you can be healed, he died so your sins will be forgiven and arose again for your victory to all mankind.
Come to my office on Sunday and I will show you thousands of letters from people who watched the program you mentioned in your letter and see how you story is encouraging thousands more to believe to stay strong in the faith.
Bishop Rev. Dr Stay Faithful
P.S: I did not deliver you. Jesus Christ did on the cross over a thousand years ago and he also saved you. AMEN
Henry Antiaye Addy
Mt. Sinai Meth. Church