God’s plan and purposes are not easily understood by man. His ways are perfect and higher than what any of us would ever imagine. His dealings with us are also mysterious. One of such truths is mentioned in 1Timothy 2: 1—4.
Apostle Paul writes about the public prayer – its importance and various aspects of evangelistic prayer. Every local church should take prayers for the conversion of souls as a priority. One of the reasons the author presents is: it is God’s desire that all may be saved and come to the knowledge of the truth. V. 4.
Justice & Mercy
Notice the Almighty God our creator is earnestly longing and patiently waiting that no man should perish but all may be saved from eternal condemnation. It was He who pronounced curse upon man for his sin and rebellion. Even, sent them out of His presence and storing up His wrath against all their unrighteousness and ungodliness. Cf Genesis. 3: 16 – 24; Romans 1:18. Yet the heart of God is yearning for man whom He created by His hands in His own image.
Through Ezekiel the Lord made it clear to the people of Israel, “I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but that the wicked turn from his way and live.” Ezekiel 33: 11. Not only He desired the salvation of man, He made the way possible by sending His Son to die as an atoning sacrifice. Isaiah 53:10. He wants that every one who believes in His Jesus Christ may have everlasting life. Cf. John 60: 40. Apostle Peter also testifies that it is because of this intense desire of God that He delays to fulfil some of the future prophetic programs particularly the second coming of Christ. 2Peter 3: 9
Praise God, today we got saved, born again and enjoying the blessings of the heavenly place, not because we deserved it, nor we sought after it, but God in His mercy and kindness wanted to save us. He made the way possible not only by the death of His son even sending some one to us with the truth of this good news. How we ought to be grateful and humble before such a wonderful work of God, even His burden for us.
Patience & Wrath
Often some secular scholars try to portrait the God the Bible as a blood thirsty God, referring to the killings of Old Testament especially by Joshua. It is because of their failure to read and understand the full revelation of God’s programme for man found in the word of God. Holy and righteous God always pronounced judgement according to their evil yet patiently waited for their repentance and deliverance. In connection with the killings under Joshua we find that God in His mercy waited more than 400 years before He punished by the hands of Joshua. Cf. Genesis 15:13, 16. Even when He poured His wrath upon those rebellious people, He did graciously save few who repented and sought salvation. Cf. Joshua 6:17.
So, in any age if any one perishes it is not because God intended it, but just because man chose to go to the way of destruction. Still the Lord finds no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but longs for the salvation of all.
Pray & Associate
But dear Christian believer, how do we respond to the deep desire of God Almighty? Not enough to be saved and come to the truth. Paul tells us, you pray for all even for those who rule over us, that all may be saved. Remember, he does not say, you go and preach or support a mission field. The minimum, the relatively easiest response from us is - PRAYER for mission / evangelism. That is the foremost responsibility of a Christian in view of the world evangelization. The Lord Jesus also told His disciples, when He saw the multitude with out any shepherd, “The harvest truly is plentiful, but the labourers are few. Therefore pray...” Matth:9: 37, 38.
Are we really faithful in this great responsibility? Do we feel that pain of our Almighty God who is looking forward to the conversion of each soul? As thousands go to the eternal hell with out even hearing the name of Christ, what is our duty? Is it not anything to us? Consider it believed, God in His own initiative and desire caused us to come to Christ and then is it not our duty to associate with Him in His purposes to bring many to the saving knowledge of Christ.
Further, consider the wonder of God’s work, when He wants to save men and women, He expects us to pray for those people whom He would save. Before they shall be saved, He expects us to pray. Does it mean if some one does not come to the Lord one of the reasons could be that we did not pray for their salvation! As mentioned in the beginning it’s very hard to understand such mysterious working of God. The Lord pleased to allow us also to be workers together with Him? Cf. 1Cori 3:9. Such a truth should humble us and bring us on the knees to plead and even to involve ourselves with mission as the Lord would lead us.
Christian believer, what is your response God’s longing? Is prayer for the salvation of souls your priority? Paul goes on to explain that there is no other God, no other saviour, no other occasion and no one else to communicate this truth to the perishing souls. What’s your contribution to the gospel work? Let the desire of God for souls be our desire too. Romans 10:1
Now is the Time
A young lady came under conviction at a gospel meeting, and felt that she should yield to Christ. But, she had promised a young man to a ball to be held in the future. That night before retiring, she wrote something like this: “One year from tonight I will become a Christian”, then she lay down to rest, but could not sleep. Then she arose and wrote: “Six months from tonight I will give my heart to God”, and again lay down to, but no rest to body or soul could she find.
Thus again and again she arose and shortened the time, until at last she wrote: “Tomorrow I will become a Christian,” but refused to settle it then and there. In the morning she did not appear, and friends, on going to her room found her body cold and silent in the embrace of death, the spirit having departed to meet the realities beyond.