Read: Exodus 32:21-32
This world is in desperate need of Christians who have a burden for souls. Yet many of Christ’s followers are complacent about the fate of the lost and the need of pointing them to the Saviour. David Augsburger wrote in his book Witness is Withness, “we must have a passion born of compassion.” He went on to give some examples: “It is the cry of John Knox, ‘Give me Scotland or I die’; of George Whitefield, ‘Give me souls, or take my soul’; of David Brainerd, ‘I care not where I go or how I live or what I endure so that I may save souls. When I sleep, I dream of them; when I awake, they are first in my thoughts.’ Brainerd continued, ‘No amount of scholastic attainment, of able and profound exposition, of brilliant and stirring eloquence can atone for the absence of a deep, impassioned, sympathetic love of human souls.’”
There is much to learn from Moses in our Scripture portion for today. After speaking to the Lord about the great sin of the Israelites in making the golden calf, he made an unusual request. He asked, “Yet now, if You will forgive their sin—but if not, I pray, blot me out of Your book which You have written” (Exod. 32:32). What a great concern for the people of God! And what a great sacrificial request! He was willing to be blotted out if the people’s sin was not forgiven. Paul the apostle had a similar passion when he said, “For I could wish that I myself were accursed from Christ for my brethren” (Rom. 9:3).
What would it take to give us that kind of passion for souls? We need to contemplate more the awfulness and horror of hell. Then no one could keep us from warning men and women to flee from the wrath to come. The famous preacher Charles Spurgeon even said, “Have you no wish for others to be saved? Then you’re not saved yourself, be sure of that!” If we are saved, and if we are sure of that, then we definitely ought to have the sincere concern for others’ salvation.