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The Alex McFarland Show-111-Reconciled to God

Alex McFarland Show / Alex McFarland
The Truth Network Radio
May 28, 2024 12:00 am

The Alex McFarland Show-111-Reconciled to God

Alex McFarland Show / Alex McFarland

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May 28, 2024 12:00 am

Are there unforgivable sins? In today’s episode, Alex reads a heartbreaking letter from an inmate serving time for possession of child pornography. This individual wrote to Alex, desperate to know if Jesus really does forgive him, or if he should accept that his sins are too great. With compassion and through biblical examination, Alex shares God’s heart for all who confess, repent, and seek Him. This episode is a beautiful reminder of God’s unfailing love for us and those the world would label “unredeemable”. 

Scriptures:  

Ephesians 1:7

Galatians 1:4

John 6:37

Romans 10:13

John 6:40

Romans 5:10

Isaiah 59:2 

Colossians 1

Colossians 1:14

1 John 1

Romans 6:32

Exodus 3:14

Jeremiah 17:9

Luke 16

Isaiah 1:18

John 10:28

Mark 10:13

Jeremiah 14:14

Matthew 7:21-24

Matthew 18:6

Alex McFarland

Ask Alex Online Alex@alexmcfarland.com Booking@alexmcfarland.com

Book: The Assault on America

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Greensboro, NC 27404

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Are there any sins so bad that even Jesus can't forgive them?

Hi, Alex McFarland here. I want to begin today's show by reading a verse from Ephesians 1, verse 7, which says in him, in Jesus, we have the redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins in accordance with the riches of God's grace. We're going to talk about what salvation really means. And I want to begin by reading a letter from an inmate that listens to us. It's a little bit lengthy, and I'm sure it'll tug at your heart. I know it moved my heart.

But I want to cue this up to talk about salvation. I also want to talk a little bit about what our society, how our society views children, because birth rates are down, marriage rates are down. As you probably know, since Roe versus Wade in 1973, over 72 million American children or would-be children were aborted. And that's about the number of migrants that have come here illegally. There's a great gap in our Social Security reserves. There's crime in the streets, homelessness.

These things are not entirely to lay the blame at the feet of illegals. But we are a nation that has deviated from God's moral standards for decades, as I'm sure you know. And the Bible says you can't sow to the wind and not reap a whirlwind.

And we've sown toward immorality, lawlessness, materialism, sexual sin, and we are reaping the consequences of that. And so I do want to give good news in that anybody can be saved if they'll truly turn to Jesus. But let me read this letter. This is from an inmate. I'm not going to name the state. I'm not going to read the person's name.

Sir, you probably will know who you are. I hope you're hearing this. We often send letters back to prisons. We send Bibles. We have shipped volumes of books and Bibles and letters, and very, very often they come back marked undeliverable.

I don't exactly know why. I personally have had clearance at two dozen maximum security prisons. And just recently, a month ago in Texas, we got to speak in two different prisons. You know, sometimes things get through and sometimes they don't.

We do our very best. But I want to read this letter and then talk about the salvation that truly is real in Jesus Christ. The person writes and says he's incarcerated, Mr. McFarland, but I respect you.

I have some questions about God, Jesus, and forgiveness. I apologize for being all over the board, but I'm not a writer. I understand. Then he talks about basically he got locked up for looking at child pornography on the web. Terrible thing. Here's what he says, quote, I was addicted to porn by an early age. I found it around age nine in my parents' closet. As time went on, I got older, and I began to look at harder and harder things. I wanted something more, and I found it.

It disturbed me at first, but I became hooked. I had a wife of ten years, two great stepkids, a beautiful house, a vehicle for each of us. And in two days, it was gone.

The American dream was gone in the blink of an eye. I'm a Marine, supposed to protect people and not bring evil into their lives. I've asked Jesus to come into my heart, and I believe that Jesus is the Son of God, and that God raised him from the dead. Okay, so this individual apparently was caught with child porn and went to prison. And he says he has been in prison for, I'm not sure how long, but he says he has fourteen more years to go. But listen to his questions, because they are heartbreaking. Is a person like me redeemable through the blood of Jesus? Am I hoping against hope, or should I just accept that I'm doomed to hell?

I've thought about ending it all. And he talks about hanging himself with a belt. He said another inmate did that about three months ago, so he's free now.

I don't know about that. We don't know if the person was saved or not. The inmate goes on, quote, Is suicide a sin? I've been locked up, and I have fourteen more years to go. How do I forgive myself when no one ever else will? My heart, mind, and soul are in torment.

The emotional pain is intense, always. How can I put the past, the memories, and all the bad I've done in the past to stay? Mr. McFarland, I'm scared, and I don't want to go to hell. Am I truly savable through Jesus? I realize that I'm the scum of the earth, he says. Well, we all are as sinners. We really are. But do you know the thing is we're valuable to God? I'm going to come back to that. Even murderers have respect and rights.

But I feel so bad about the images and videos that I looked at. I really have a ton of respect for you, and I enjoy exploring the Word when I can hear it. I would greatly appreciate if you get a chance to reply. I know you're a busy man. I would love to hear from you.

If I don't, I completely understand. Well, first of all, we are responding and writing to this person. I hope and I pray he's hearing this now, because I just don't know if my letters will reach him in the prison. But the Bible says, whosoever calls on the name of the Lord will be saved. The Bible says in Galatians 1 that Jesus gave himself for our sins to rescue us, according to the will of God the Father. And so I want to say to this inmate and to anyone, and I don't minimize the sin, child pornography is a horrible thing. I want to come back to the biblical worldview of humanity and what does it mean to be a person and why all persons are worthy of respect.

And certainly the Bible has incredibly strong words to say about harming children. But nevertheless, if we admit our sins and we say, Lord, I admit I own it. I'm not making excuses. Lord, I admit I'm a sinner, and I deserve your wrath. But God, I ask for your mercy, and I receive it. I want to say to everybody listening, Jesus gave his life on Calvary's cross.

The appropriate measure of God's wrath that the world deserved was put onto Jesus. And if you will turn to Christ, believe in Jesus, and receive the gift that he is offering, he will forgive you. Now the way you do that, very often near the end of the show, we'll share what we call the sinner's prayer. But I want to do it now.

And we, not to be trite, but we say it's like ABC. Admit that you're a sinner. Believe. Do you believe that Jesus is the Son of God, as he said? Do you believe that when he was nailed to Calvary's cross, he did that for you, fellow inmate, listener, individual? Do you believe he went to the cross for you? He did. And do you believe that if you call on his name, as he has promised to hear you, do you believe that he will hear you? Of course he will. He will not single you out and say, oh, the whole wide world could be saved, but not this person. Not you.

No. The Bible says if we call on the name of the Lord, that he will receive us. That's John 6 37, Romans 10 13, John 6 40. So many verses I could give you.

But do you know what the Bible says in Romans 5 10? That we were once enemies of God, but we are reconciled to God through Jesus. And now reconciled, we are saved through his life. Well stay tuned, we're going to come back. We're going to talk about some of the hard questions about salvation and how, no matter how far we think we are from God, we can be connected with God, reconciled to God through the Lord Jesus Christ. Stay tuned, we're back after this. Fox News and CNN call Alex McFarland a religion and culture expert.

Stay tuned for more of his teaching and commentary after this. Are you tired of liberal agendas ruining our country, but you don't know what to do about it? That's why Truth and Liberty Coalition was founded. We want to equip you to take back our country and impact the world. Here's how we do it. We educate through broadcasts, conferences, and our website with resources that inform, equip, and motivate. We unify by collaborating with like-minded organizations like the Family Research Council, the Family Policy Alliance, and My Faith Votes. We mobilize by providing practical tools you can use to impact your local community.

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He's been called trusted, truthful, and timely. Welcome back to the Alex McFarland Show. Welcome back to the program.

Before the break, I'm sure you were moved as I was by the letter from the inmate. He talks about how he had a wife, a house, two vehicles, the American Dream, and it was gone in just a couple of days through the repercussions of a porn addiction. This shows the just dangerous, dangerous nature of sin. John Piper, the famous radio preacher some years ago, he said, too many of us are in the business of sin management rather than repentance.

I've said this before, but you would be safer trying to coddle a cobra snake than to manage sin in your life. Unconfessed sin will do so many things. The Bible tells us in Isaiah that sin will separate us between us and God, and he will not hear. But Jesus came to set us free from sin. And over and over throughout the Bible it talks about that like in Colossians chapter 1, that in Jesus we are rescued from the dominion of darkness. We are brought into the kingdom of Jesus, God's dear Son. And who is this Jesus? Colossians 1.14, the one, listen, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins, to be redeemed, bought back. I know you've probably heard stories of things put in a pawn shop or houses foreclosed upon, and maybe some great benefactor would come and pay the bill, and the person was redeemed from out of foreclosure.

Well that's how it was. Now let me say one thing. Every now and then you'll hear this kind of urban legend people will say, well, on the cross Jesus paid the ransom to Satan. It's the ransom theory of atonement.

No. We were not in hock, Satan was some pawnbroker and God had to go pay our ticket to get us out. What it was, we had sinned against a holy God.

We had violated God's righteous law. And God is full of grace, yes, but God is just. And God can't just sweep sin under the rug. And we've said this, that part of God's eternality is that in him there is no darkness at all. There is no sin or death in Almighty God. The Bible says in 1 John 1 that God is light, and in him there is no death or darkness. Now, Romans 6 32 says that the result of sin is death, part of God's eternality. And Exodus 3 14 we've talked about many times, he is the great I am.

He says, I am that I am. In other words, it is God's nature to exist. God could not not be. And part of his eternal nature is that God is life and light, and there is no sin, no darkness, no evil, no death in God. Now God is a God of grace, and he'll forgive any sin. But as Billy Graham said, God will forgive any sin, but he will overlook no sin.

God could not and will not let sin into heaven, because sin brings death, and heaven is a place of life. Now, because he is a God of grace, he made the steps necessary, and this is so beautiful, without compromising his righteous nature, he made it possible for us to be forgiven, redeemed, restored, born again, converted, you name it. I mean there are so many biblical words.

It means saved, made alive. And he did not compromise his righteous nature, and yet he fully manifested his love, mercy, and grace in Jesus Christ. Now any murder, any lie, any lust, any unforgiveness, any theft, stealing, disobeying the law... Do you know when you speed, you're sinning? Because Romans 13, 1-7 says that we are to obey the law.

The powers that be are ordained by God. Now if the law is compelling and coercing you to do that which is unbiblical and ungodly, then, as many Christian ethicists have talked about over the years, civil disobedience is mandated. But in the ordinary course of things, we are to obey the law. Not to be legalistic, but I'm just being truthful, if you're speeding, you're breaking the law. If you drive without a seatbelt, where the local ordinance says we're a seatbelt, that's lawlessness.

That's breaking the law. So we're all sinners, you know. The third week of May, as I'm recording this, the Pope has just come out and said that people are fundamentally good. He was asked, the Pope, the current Pope was asked about the border crisis, and he said that it's a sin for people not to be allowed in at the border, because people are basically good.

You know, I found that interesting. One of the walled cities, one of the most fortified cities on earth is Vatican City. Vatican City is a country. It's a country with a wall around it. The Pope lives behind closed doors with locks and deadbolts and a security detail. And so if he's going to call for a country to have open borders, how about starting with Vatican City?

But here's my point. The Pope says that people are fundamentally good, and everybody has a good heart. He said in the interview on May 21st that there are some rogues, but people have a good heart. Well, my Bible has the book of Jeremiah, and in 17, verse 9, Jeremiah 17, 9, it says the heart is deceitful and wicked above all things.

Who can know it? In other words, and I've got a book about the battle for the mind by the late, great Tim LaHaye, and he commented on that verse, and he said basically, we can't even comprehend our capacity for sin. You see, the Christian worldview says people are basically fallen, sinful. It's not that we're good.

Our problem is that we're bad. The bad news is we're a sinner. The worse news is that sin brings death and judgment. And if we enter into eternity with our sinful condition unresolved according to the Bible, that is everlasting hell.

Read Luke 16. And the Bible is very clear that those who do not receive Christ's gift of salvation are lost, and lost means not in heaven, and not in heaven means in hell. Now, the good news though is that Jesus Christ made it possible for any sinner to be saved. So my inmate friend who has written, the answer to your questions, is a person like me redeemable through the blood of Jesus? Yes, you are redeemable through the blood of Jesus. The blood of Jesus Christ was shed for the sins of the world, and you as a human being are a subset of that. You're part of the human race.

Am I hoping against hope? No, your hope in Jesus is justified, sir. Should I just accept that I'm doomed to go to hell?

No, you should not accept that. That is a lie from Satan. Isaiah 118 says, Come now, let us reason together, saith the Lord. Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow, though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool. God loves you. Christ died for you. Jesus is as close by as a prayer. Call out to him today, and you will be saved. Stay tuned, folks.

We're going to come back right after this. Fox News and CNN call Alex McFarland a religion and culture expert. Stay tuned for more of his teaching and commentary after this.

Do you have a desire to deepen your faith, better understand Christian apologetics, or to get a biblical perspective on current events? Well, I've tried to make it simple for you to do just that. On my website, alexmcfarland.com, there's a new section called Ask Alex Online. It's simple, it's clean, and you can read my answers to common questions about God, faith, and the Bible. So visit the website alexmcfarland.com and look for the section that says Ask Alex Online. Christian author and speaker Alex McFarland is an advocate for Christian apologetics. Teaching in more than 2,200 churches around the world, schools, and college campuses, Alex is driven by a desire to help people grow in relationship with God. He arms his audiences with the tools they need to defend their faith, while also empowering the unchurched to find out the truth for themselves. In the midst of a culture obsessed with relativism, Alex is a sound voice who speaks timeless truths of Christianity in a timely way. With 18 published books to his name, it's no surprise that CNN, Fox, the Wall Street Journal, and other media outlets have described Alex as a religion and culture expert. To learn more about Alex and to book him as a speaker at your next event, visit alexmcfarland.com, or you can contact us directly by emailing booking at alexmcfarland.com.

He's been called trusted, truthful, and timely. Welcome back to The Alex McFarland Show. Welcome back to the program. We'll continue our talk about redemption here in just a moment. But I want to say a big thank you to all of the people who've been praying for our upcoming summer camps.

By the time you hear this, in the last week of May 2024, we're only a few days away from our first summer camp in South Georgia, and we'll be all over the country, Montana, Colorado. And hopefully we'll be telling young people a message of the gospel and biblical worldview, such that like this individual that we're so praying for, who found himself incarcerated for 16 years plus because of a porn addiction, we hope that these young people will build their lives on the Lord Jesus Christ. And so, sir, I'm going to be putting some stuff in the mail to you. Please believe that Jesus loves you. As you have put your faith in Christ, you are secure in Christ.

John 10.28 says nothing can pluck us out of his hand. And let me say to the person who wrote Contemplating Suicide, for this individual or anybody contemplating self-harm, don't do that. Call 988. That's the Suicide Crisis Lifeline 988. Suicide is never the answer. Now the question of would a saved person still go to heaven if they took their life, that's a whole other show. We're going to do a show on that because just in the last few months we've ministered to several families that suicide touched the family, and it's so tragic, so unspeakably heartbreaking. The short answer is if a person is born again, they are born again. But I feel it's almost dangerous to say that because our security in Christ in no way, in no way legitimizes engaging in self-harm or contemplating suicide.

So never, never would we ever legitimize suicide. And so I would encourage you, if you're depressed, if you're thinking that way, get help. But I do want to, with the remainder of this program, talk about redemption. But before we resume our talk about the Gospel, I want to ask people to pray. We'll have hundreds and hundreds of young people. And I've been in the ministry 30 plus years. I was a youth pastor 11 years, and have been now for 20 years doing youth events all around the country. I will tell you, kids are growing up in a hard world. They really are. So many young people do not live under the same roof with their biological mother and father.

Nearly 68% of middle school and high schoolers say that they feel depressed, if not hopeless. And so more than ever, this generation, this world, needs the message of Jesus Christ. I want to say a heartfelt, sincere thank you to all of you that are supporting this ministry. We do events, publishing, broadcasting. We've just hired a development director, Jonathan McNabb.

He's doing a fantastic job. We have Linda Kiger. Many of you have talked with Linda.

She's a retired school teacher helping us just pray with people and adequately try to express our thanks. We have a social media director. We're doing television.

In fact, I'm recording this from Atlanta, where I'm down here filming some TV shows. So I just want to say thank you for all of the people that are standing with us and our growing board, our growing staff. We are working on a major, major national event the fall of 2025.

Of course, we'll have 200 smaller events between now and the fall of 2025. But please be in prayer. We'll be releasing information, because we're in it to win it, to call our nation to Christ, to see Christians empowered, churches revived, and your prayers and your involvement, your support mean the world to us. You can go to my website, which is alexmcfarland.com, and it's the portal for all that we're doing.

The calendar is there, my travel schedule. So many things that the Lord is allowing us to do for the sake of the gospel. But do you remember in Mark 10, 13 and following, when Jesus saw the little children, he said, Let the little children come to me. Do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. The Bible has so much to say about the value of human life. The Bible has so much to say about not harming children. The Bible has so much to say about the sacredness of marriage, the value of family, and really how God expects us to treat each other with love and respect and value and grace. And that's why I really believe that our nation is decades on borrowed time.

I mean, really, you think about that. The way that we have treated marriage, just the way that we have treated humanity, and our court system has tried to redefine marriage and really subsidize unspeakable immorality. And then now, with DEI, diversity, equity, inclusion, I mean, people are threatened with legal charges if they refuse to acquiesce and say that men and women are fluid and gender is interchangeable. What kind of reminds me of Jeremiah 14.14, God told the prophets, Hey, don't even pray for Israel. They're too far sinful. And it said about the leaders in Israel in this time of backsliddenness, Jeremiah 14.14, The prophets prophesy lies in my name.

I did not send them, neither have I commanded them, neither did I speak to them. They prophesy unto you a false vision, divination, a thing that is nothing, and the deceit of their heart. And I think about that nowadays with the ministers and denominations that want to ordain lesbians and transgender people, and they're celebrating what the Word of God says is just abominable. And I think about the tragedy, not only in this life, but in the next, people that will stand before God, unsaved, condemned, and they might say, But my professor at college said it was okay.

The district supervisor in my denomination said, We are inclusive, open hearts, open doors, open minds. And King Jesus, read Matthew 7.21-24, will say, Depart, I never knew you. Folks, there are the ten thousand false messages of the world. There's the one true salvation that is found in the Lord Jesus Christ. And regarding, I think about the millions, the tens of millions of abortions, the Bible says that whoever hurts one of these children, it would be better that a millstone be put around his neck, and they be thrown in the bottom of the ocean.

Isn't that something? That's Matthew 18.6. And I think about all the politicians that are pro-abortion, pro-immorality, sex before marriage, contraceptives being handed out in middle school, and then when pregnancy does occur, abortion. Matthew 18.6 is going to be one of the Scriptures that I believe they'll have to face when they stand at the Judgment Day.

All the people that subsidize this. I want to close with an illustration about redemption and salvation in Jesus. And I'm a little hesitant to do this because it deals with the Beatles, not paragons of righteousness by any means.

But this really is a good illustration of the fact that in Christ we've been bought back. And I'm not sharing this out of any endorsement of the Beatles' lifestyle or anything like that, but as the Beatles were breaking up around 1970, and John Lennon had left his wife Cynthia and their five-year-old child, and had taken up with Yoko Ono, Cynthia Lennon didn't get anything. She knew John before he was famous, they got married, they knew each other in art college, and she was really left indigent. But she had a lot of letters, early love letters and drawings and things, so she decided to sell these off to just have enough to get by.

She, now single, divorced with a five-year-old little boy, Julian Lennon. So it was pretty famously advertised, and she sold all of her personal effects that she had from growing up with the teenage John Lennon and he, of course, you know, the most famous band in the world. And all of the personal artifacts sold, and they brought a huge amount of money. And suddenly a package arrived and they were shipped back. The one who bought her personal things that she auctioned, there was a note inside, and it said, I bought these and I'm giving them so you'll have them. Never sell your memories, Paul McCartney. He bought back what was lost and returned it to her.

I'm not sharing that to say anything necessarily about the Beatles. I'm simply saying, that's redemption. We were lost. We were broken. We owed a debt we couldn't pay. Christ went to the cross and paid our debt. And when you put your faith in Jesus, as the Bible says, you are washed as white as snow. No matter who you are, never forget, Jesus is as close by as a prayer. Thanks for joining us. We'll see you again on the next edition of the Alex McFarland Show.
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-05-28 02:33:48 / 2024-05-28 02:44:51 / 11

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