The Apostle Paul preached Christ to King Agrippa during his hearing before being sent to Rome in appeal to Caesar. Paul was so persuasive that the king told Paul, “Almost thou persuadest me to be a Christian” (Acts 26:28). What sad words! The king came so close to securing heaven for his poor immortal soul.
How many millions in hell came that close! How many in torment today were almost persuaded to trust Christ, the only door to heaven! How many remember the lost opportunities when they left church still lost, maybe after hearing an inspiring and stirring sermon? How many were almost persuaded? Sadly, “almost persuaded” is not enough to get one into heaven.
When I was 19 and in college, my friends and I, once after church, witnessed to a boy our age who was an unbeliever. We failed to persuade him,but he paid me a great compliment. He told me, “You have come closer to persuading me than anyone else.” He was almost persuaded. I never saw him again after that, but many times I have prayed that he would one day be persuaded to receive Christ as Savior. Nothing elsein this life matters as much as that.
When Paul and Silas were imprisoned in a dungeon, the Philippian jailer asked them, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” They answered, “Believe on the Lord Jesus and thou shalt be saved” (Acts 16:30-31). Why would a jailer want to be like his prisoners? They displayed their joy of salvation under terrible circumstances by singing hymns and praising God! The jailer wanted that same joy and contentment.
Christians today should make Christ attractive to unbelievers the same way, by being joyful and content. We Christians ought to be the happiest people on earth, for we know our souls will proceed straight to heaven the moment we die. We know we have taken care of the most important thing we can ever do on this earth. We know we have nothing ultimately to fear. In fact, Christians should actually look forward to being again with saved loved ones and friends who have preceded them to heaven.This reminds meof that beautiful old hymn, “What A Day That Will Be.”
I praise God and thank Him every day for his grace, love, and mercy in sending His Son to die for me! Don’t let the devil, through society, deceive you into thinking you must earn salvation by being good. Ephesians 2:8-9 tells us, “For by grace are you saved through faith, and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God. Not of works, lest anyone should boast.”
Friends, let us try to persuade others of the truth of the Gospel of Christ. If we love them, we will. Let us help them become persuaded so that we can be with them in heaven one day. Tell them, “Almost persuaded” is not enough. They must be altogether persuaded, as Paul implored King Agrippa.