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What does it mean to be Lost?


What does it mean to be Lost?

How does God view the individual who has never put his faith in Jesus Christ as his personal Savior?

The Bible describes the estate of the unsaved person as a “children of disobedience,” “dead in trespasses and sins,” “lost,” “perishing,” “condemned,” “under the wrath of God,” “blind,” “in the powers of darkness,” “loves spiritual darkness,” “under the control of Satan,” “disobedient to God,” etc. (John 3:18-20, 36; 8:44; Eph. 2:1-2; Mk. 7:21-33; Rom. 5:19; 1:29-32; 3:10-18; Gal. 5:19-21).

The lost person is spiritually blind to the things of God (1 Cor. 2:14; 2 Cor. 4:3-4; Jn. 3:3). Therefore, he sees little value in the demand of the Bible to have a personal faith in the saving power of God in Christ.

All moral and religious people who do not have a personal trust in Jesus Christ as their Savior are not saved. They are spiritually lost and not counted among the saved (Isa. 53:6). There is nothing they can do to merit or earn salvation by their virtue or good works. No good works in any form can take the place of a spiritual birth (Jn. 3:3). Good religious works and high moral values cannot impart new life or salvation.

Man has wandered away from God and is in the wrong place. In Luke 19:10, Jesus said, “For the Son of man is come to seek and save that which was lost.” John summarizes the saving Gospel, “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life” (John 3:16). Then he goes on to explain, “He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God” (v. 18).

The lost person is totally depraved meaning that he cannot influence God in any way to merit or gain a right relationship with God. “Then the Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great on the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually” (Gen. 6:5). “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?” (Jer. 17:9). Jesus described the lost person: “For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed the evil thoughts, fornications, thefts, murders, adulteries, deeds of coveting and wickedness, as well as deceit, sensuality, envy, slander, pride and foolishness” (Mark 7:21-22). It looks and smells like prime-time television, but it is totally unacceptable to God. “There is not a just person on the earth, that does good, and sins not” (Ecc. 7:20). “For all of us have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous deeds are like a filthy garment; and all of us wither like a leaf, and our iniquities, like the wind, take us away” (Isa. 64:6). In the sight of a holy God, such individuals are lost and cannot find their way to God.

Only God can remedy this problem in the heart of a person. “The wages of sin is death,” and every sinner must pay the penalty or have someone pay it for him (Rom. 6:23; 5:6-8).

Jesus gave Himself as a ransom for our sins, the just for the unjust. “He Himself bore our sins in His body on the cross that we might die to sin and live to righteousness; for by His wounds we were healed” (1 Pet. 2:24).

God the Holy Spirit energizes the estate of the person who has put his faith in the atoning work of Jesus Christ (Phil. 2:13; Jn. 3:3). The saved person is under the life changing power of God. We are energized either by God or by Satan. We are either saved or unsaved; there is no other choice. The saved person is “delivered from the power of darkness,” and God “has transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son” (Col. 1:13). The LORD God Himself has provided the only acceptable cure demanded by an infinitely pure and holy God.

God is the sole author of our salvation. We are lost in the “power of darkness” of sin until God transforms us. The god of this world has blinded the minds of those who have not believed on Christ (2 Cor. 4:3-4). When we are born spiritually, our spiritual eyes are illuminated and we see the light of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Our minds, hearts, and volition come under the influence and power of the Holy Spirit and we are changed from the inside out.

The greatest thing an infinite God can do for man is to transform him from one who hates God to a lover of God. He takes us from an estate of hostility to God to one in which we are “conformed to the image of His Son.” Salvation transforms us to be “like Christ.”

“For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God” (Ephesians 2:8).



Message by Wil Pounds (c) 2006





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Unless otherwise noted "Scripture quotations taken from the NASB." "Scripture taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE" © Copyright 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation Used by permission." (www.Lockman.org)

Scripture quoted by permission. Quotations designated (NET) are from the NET Bible copyright ©1996-2006 by Biblical Studies Press, L.L.C. http://www.bible.org/. All rights reserved.

Wil is a graduate of William Carey University, B. A.; New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, Th. M.; and Azusa Pacific University, M. A. He has pastored in Panama, Ecuador and the U. S, and served for over 20 years as missionary in Ecuador and Honduras. He had a daily expository Bible teaching ministry head in over 100 countries from 1972-2005. He continues to seek opportunities to be personally involved in world missions. Wil and his wife Ann have three grown daughters. He currently serves as a Baptist pastor and teaches seminary extension courses in Ecuador.


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