The God of heaven does not want even one person to perish in sin (2 Peter 3:9). Indeed, since He is “rich in mercy” and has a “great love” for all humans (Ephesians 2:4), He wants every person to be saved (1 Timothy 2:4).
The redemption that our Creator offers is available to mankind in His Son (Ephesians 1:7), through Whom a person must go if he wants to come to the Father (John 14:6). Jesus invites humanity to Himself with these words: “Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28).
Jesus, Who paid the ultimate price for our forgiveness, pleads with every man and woman that is flailing and drowning in sin to come to Him. Why come to the Christ? Because only in Him can we have true deliverance and safety in the spiritual realm. How does the Godhead attract/draw/call people to Jesus for salvation?
Many are convinced that God attracts/pulls people to Jesus by some indescribable, mysterious, unexplainable guiding by the Holy Spirit. It is proposed that unless the Holy Spirit directly operates on a person’s heart/mind to open it, then he will remain lost. The pull, it is said, must come from the Spirit – the Spirit must step in to attract and bring one to Jesus for salvation, and He must do so in a manner that is nothing short of “miraculous.” Masses of sincere sheep have been led to accept and follow this unfounded, false doctrine. The Bible simply does not teach it.
The Lord Jesus said, “(44) No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him, and I will raise him up at the last day. (45) It is written in the prophets, ‘And they shall all be taught by God.’ Therefore everyone who has heard and learned from the Father comes to Me” (John 6:44,45). What did Jesus declare about coming to Him? Here are three truths that the Master set forth about coming to Him:
#1 – It is possible to come to Him (6:44);
#2 – The one who comes to Jesus is the person whom the Father draws – in fact, unless the Father draws one, he cannot come to Jesus (6:44);
#3 – The one who comes to Jesus is the one who has heard and learned from the Father (6:45).
When you break down the contents of these two verses (John 6:44,45), it is easy to see the manner in which a person comes to Jesus. On the one hand, Jesus pointed out a fact: no one comes to Him unless the Father draws him – the Father must do the drawing/pulling in order to get a person to come to Jesus. On the other hand, our Lord says that the one who comes to Him is the one who has heard and learned from the Father. There you have it – that is how the Father draws people to His Son – folks must hear and learn from the Father. In other words, the Father attracts/draws people to Jesus through His word – as it is written, “They shall all be taught by God.” Those whom the Father teaches, those are the only ones that can come to Jesus. How does the Father do His teaching? Through His word. You do not need to look elsewhere for an explanation! Jesus Himself told us how to come to Him – be educated and called by the Father. How does He call us? Through the gospel (2 Thessalonians 2:14).
In our generation, what are professed believers in Jesus doing to try and attract people? A number of them take the approach, “We will do whatever it takes to bring them in.” Some choose to arrange a group/choir of talented singers to perform spiritual songs to awe and woo listeners. Seriously, where did you ever read anything in the Bible about bringing people to Jesus by telling some Christians to hush and listen while “the good singers” sing?
Others have employed the practice of giving cash to a visitor that happens to sit in “the lucky seat” under which cash has been taped. To be sure, money will arouse interest and draw a crowd! Yet, giving away money is not the Lord’s formula for attracting people to His salvation. It is a worldly, materialistic appeal for a problem that needs a spiritual remedy.
Brethren, let us be busy promoting the gospel. Yes, the good news of salvation through Jesus – that is what the world really needs! Mark it down – in recent or distant history, the church grew in number in this country and others when members were busy teaching the gospel in a kind, but aggressive fashion. No gimmicks, no gadgets, no games, just gospel.
The gospel is God’s power to salvation (Romans 1:16). The preaching of the cross is God’s wisdom and power, even if man snubs his nose at it (1 Corinthians 1:18,21,24). It is sometimes said, “But you can catch more flies using honey than you can using vinegar or salt.” True, but we are not in the fly-catching business, are we?! Preach the word.
— Roger D. Campbell