Engaging With “Unsaved” Family and Friends

pfahlercommakatelyn asked a question:

How do you deal with your mother and other people not being saved? Do you have any hope for them?

Hey dear friend, I have a ton of hope for my family.  I have a ton of hope for everyone else in my life who doesn’t know Christ.

I understand two simple things.

1) They have a completely different worldview than me, and I need to adjust my dials for them — not in a way that compromises my faith, but in a way that shows grace. I don’t ever force them to bend to me.

2) I really dislike the way that our current church-culture does evangelism. I don’t mean to badmouth the church, because I do love her. But the two extreme methods I see are either “Sales Pitch” or “Relational Comfort.”  Either I have to package Jesus into a four-point doctrine, or bringing them cookies will somehow indirectly point to Jesus. The former approach presumes that I need to rush the entire thing; the latter approach assumes all the time in the world and that I’m catering by a non-offensive watered-down gospel.  Neither approach works.

I don’t believe in a separate category of evangelism.  Faith is an entire way of life and it will naturally exude through the overflow of loving Jesus.  My family sees this, not in my presentation of theology or in my nice-guy-mannerisms, but simply in how I make counter-cultural decisions under the banner of a substitutionary love called Christ. 

This is an imperfect process and I don’t think any reasonable person expects a perfect Christian. They only expect a real one.  Really the best thing they could say for now is, “I don’t believe in all that stuff, but it looks like you’re doing it right.”  I know that isn’t everything, but it’s a start, and faith is so often a journey of starts to the end.

— J.S.

7 thoughts on “Engaging With “Unsaved” Family and Friends

  1. I am not a man of christ but I am a man of Love. I breath it, exhale it, and sweat many of days from exercising it. Love is undefined to so many because they want to act on the emotions but not the faith of Love. Love is a lifestyle, it’s a commitment to encouraging the best in everybody around you, even in sacrifice of selfish wants. So, I spread my faith with my words, actions, and spirit; not everyone is receptive but I wait patiently for the spirit to consume them and connect when we are on the same page. So, if Jesus is truly your path, wait, and see if they come to your understanding while they may be waiting for you to come to theirs.But to have a true relationship, y’all must be equally yoked….I believe that!!!!


  2. The expectation is that most people we meet will not be believers…ever. While I would never say I exhale love and, in truth, have no idea what that looks like, I do think there are three approaches to evangelism that have been enunciated during the church era: the catholic, reformed and evangelical views. The catholic is briefly that God would raise up one to evangelize those he wished to. The corollary is that it is a church function. The reformed briefly was that evangelism was a plank in the platform of life and again no special efforts need be exerted other than creating a harmonious and christ-like society. The evangelical view was that of a calling of each believer to enter evangelism as a real act of worship. The best definition of evangelism I have heard is: presenting the gospel in a cogent and culturally clear fashion and allowing the Holy Spirit to work.


  3. I am the only one saved in my family, it is difficult because my family s catholic, though they dont go to church, but my going to church is problem for them,
    I do have the hope that one day we will worship together, and also the chinese traditional rituals,they are not saved and dont see the light, its understandable, but taking your stand for God is another matter, I am glad I have the privilege to pray for them, directly to God through Jesus Christ, and not to any man made images


  4. Reblogged this on Transformational thoughts…. and commented:
    I come from a non-churchy background and I know why this is important – We have to be counter to what the world expects on so many issues but unfortunately we live in a binary thinking world – one that God counters by His grace if we look close enough.



    What can you do to not be saved? In order to not be saved, all you have to do is ignore the New Covenant terms for pardon.

    The following are some of the ways you cannot be saved under the New Covenant.

    1. You cannot be saved by a whirlwind.

    2 Kings 1-11 And it came about when the Lord was about to take up Elijah by a whirlwind to heaven…..11 As they were going along and talking, behold, there appeared a chariot of fire and horses of fire which separated the two of them. And Elijah went up by a whirlwind to heaven.

    You cannot be saved by a whirlwind under the New Covenant terms of pardon.

    2. You cannot be saved by works of love and faith.

    Luke 7:44-50 ……47 For this reason I say to you, her sins, which are many, have been forgiven, for she loved much; ….50 And He said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.”

    The woman had her sins forgiven because she washed the feet of Jesus with her tears, kissed His feet, and anointed His feet with perfume. She loved much and had faith. Men today cannot be saved by works of love and faith. That is not the terms of forgiveness under the New Covenant.

    3. You cannot be saved by the publican parable.

    Luke 18:9-14 …..But the tax collector, standing some distance away, was even unwilling to lift up his eyes to heaven, but was beating his breast, saying, ‘God, be merciful to me, the sinner!” 14 I tell you, this man went to his house justified rather than the other; for everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but he who humbles himself will be exalted.”

    Men today cannot be justified like the publican. The publican did not confess that Jesus was resurrected from the grave. There is no evidence the publican even believed that Jesus was the Son of God. Simply saying a humble prayer to God does save anyone. The publicans were Jewish tax collectors. Saying the prayer of a Jewish tax collector is not the terms of forgiveness under the New Testament.

    4. You cannot be saved under the Judaizer’s salvation plan.

    Galatians 5:1-5…..3 And I testify again to every man who receives circumcision, that he is under obligation to keep the whole Law. 4 You have been severed from Christ, you who are seeking to be justified by law; you have fallen from grace.

    You cannot be saved by blending Christianity and the Laws of Moses. That is against the terms of pardon under the New Covenant.

    5. You cannot be saved like the thief on the cross.

    The thief believed that Jesus was the Christ.(Luke 23:39)
    The thief feared God.(Luke 23:40)
    The thief asked Jesus to remember him when He came into His kingdom. (Luke 23:42)
    Was thief saved? Yes.

    The thief did not believe in his heart that Jesus was raised from the dead by God the Father.(Romans 10:9)
    The thief was not baptized in water. (Acts 2:38, Mark 16:16, Peter 3:21)

    If you believe you can be saved like the thief, then you have to believe you can be saved without being baptized in water, and that you can be saved without believing in your heart that God resurrected Jesus from the grave

    The thief died under the old covenant and got a direct pardon from Jesus. Men, today, are living under the New Covenant. You cannot be nailed to the cross today and get a direct pardon from Jesus. Jesus is not on the cross He has been raised from the dead by God the Father.

    6. You cannot be saved like Enoch.

    Genesis 5:24 Enoch walked with God: and he was not, for God took him.

    Enoch did not believe Jesus was the Son of God. Was Enoch saved?Yes.
    Enoch did not confess that God raised Jesus from the dead. Was Enoch saved? Yes.
    Enoch did not believe that Jesus shed His blood on the cross so he could have his sins washed away.. Was Enoch saved? Yes.
    Enoch was not baptized in water. He was not immersed for the forgiveness of his sins. Was Enoch saved? Yes.
    Was Enoch born of the Spirit? No. The Holy Spirit of promise was not given until the Day of Pentecost. Was Enoch saved? Yes.

    Can men today be saved like Enoch? Absolutely not. Men, today, can only be saved by meeting the terms of pardon under the New Covenant, also know as the New Testament.

    7. You cannot be saved like the paralytic.

    Luke 5:18-20 And some men were carrying on a bed a man who paralyzed; and they were trying to bring him in and set him down in front of Him. 19 But not finding any way to bring him in because of the crowd, they went up on the roof and let him down through the tiles with his stretcher, into the middle of the crowd, in front of Jesus. 20 Seeing their faith, he said, “Friend, your sins are forgiven.”

    Jesus forgave the sins of the paralytic because of the faith of friends. Can men today be saved like the paralytic? No, they cannot.

    The paralytic was saved without personal faith.
    The paralytic was saved without repenting.
    The paralytic was saved without confessing Jesus as the Son of God.
    The paralytic was saved without being baptized.
    The paralytic was saved without believing that God raised Jesus from the dead.
    The paralytic was saved without confessing Jesus as Lord and Christ.
    The paralytic was saved before the New Covenant was available.


    The New Covenant was not in effect until Jesus died. The birth of the church of Christ was the Day of Pentecost.

    Hebrews 9:15-17 For this reason He is the mediator of the new covenant, so that , since a death has taken place for the redemption of the transgressions that were committed under the first covenant, those who have been called may receive the promise of eternal inheritance. 16 For where a covenant is, there must of necessity be the death of the one who made it. 17 For a covenant is valid only when men are dead, for it is never in force while the one who lives made it.

    The apostle Peter told all men how to be saved under the New Covenant. (Acts 2:22-41)


    FAITH: John 3:16
    REPENTANCE: Acts 2:38, Acts 3:19, Luke 24:47
    CONFESSION: Romans 10:9-10, Acts 8:37
    WATER BAPTISM: Acts 2:38, Mark 16:16, 1 Peter 3:20-21, Acts 22:16, Colossians 2:12-13, Titus 3:5, John 3:5, Galatians 3:27, Romans 6:3-7

    YOU ARE INVITED TO FOLLOW MY BLOG. http://steve-finnell.blogspot.com


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