Converts to Hell

There’s a portion of Jesus’ teaching that is commonly referred to as the “Seven Woes” where he lambastes the religious leaders of Israel for continually “missing the point.” Jesus calls them all sorts of nasty names and ridicules them in front a large crowd or people who have gathered to hear him speak. It’s pretty ugly stuff.

At one point he criticizes them for making people slaves to legalism and religious culture through their “evangelistic” efforts. “You hypocrites,” he says, “you travel over land and sea to win a single convert, and when he becomes one, you make him twice as much a son of hell as you are!”

Jesus isn’t much fun to talk to when he’s pissed off. And in the gospels Jesus seems to be pissed off at the religious folks the most.

A couple weeks ago, Rob Bell gave a sermon that was (loosely) based on this passage. It compared the “convince and conquer” method of evangelism to the ways Jesus shared his ideas about faith. While some may seek to win religious arguments with apologetics and debate, Jesus spoke softly of faith through metaphor. Quite the contrast.

Rob Bell – Converts to Hell


4 thoughts on “Converts to Hell

  1. preaching, arguing, debating, whatever people want to call it, the bottom line is if a person doesn’t believe, there’s NOTHING you can do about it. that’s just one thing that gets me so infuriated with the “let’s go out and saaaaaaaaave people!” crowd. you can’t. that’s what God does. and being annoying and self-righteous aint gonna help the process AT ALL.

  2. I’ve just finished reading Acts and the Epistles. I find myself feeling like a Gentile Christian surrounded by “religious” Jewish Christians. Only today, these “religious” Christians no longer have Jewish heritage as an excuse for being religious. Why does each generation raise up a new breed of “religous” Christians?

  3. Human nature gravitates toward “religion.” That’s evident worldwide. Man tends to create religious systems and structures in an attempt to bring some sense of purpose, order and meaning to an otherwise chaotic existence.

    (I believe this is also the thesis of Bell’s upcoming speaking tour titled “The God’s Aren’t Angry.”)

    When you see the movement of the Spirit in Acts, you see his people experiencing a completely different looking spirituality than the “religious” establishment of that day. I know alot of folks that are questioning the parralel they see between the modern “establishment” church and “religious” Israel. I’ve had many, many conversations recently with people who are wrestling their way through this.

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