I heard it said recently that those converted from a non-christian background have a greater appreciation the desperate condition of those who are not saved, than those who are saved from a believing background. They have this because they are aware of the desperate position they came from themselves. Those from christian backgrounds are not inclined to be so aware of the ‘lostness’ of the lost because they have always been brought up under the influence of the gospel. Is this the case?
Overall my conclusion is that this is not the case? I say this because a true appreciation of the lostness of the lost comes through being in the presence of God. When our heart is in tune with the heart of the Lord then our heart knows how grievous it is to be lost. So we read in Luke 13:34 of how the Lord looked out over Jerusalem and exclaimed; ‘Jerusalem Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you were not willing.’ Here is the perfect man, who never experienced a personal rescue from sin because He knew no sin. However, He knows the terrible plight of the ungodly because He has the heart of God being God Himself. Accordingly, an appreciation of the lostness of the lost is not dependant on my background and experience, but the closeness of my fellowship with the Lord. When my heart is in tune with the Lord’s I will feel as He feels. This is as much a reality for those brought up in a believing home as for the one converted from heathenism or false religion.
It is true that if someone is saved from a desperate background, then in the immediate aftermath of experiencing God’s great deliverance there is a great appreciation of the wonderful salvation of God. However, this inevitably fades unless there is an ongoing interaction with the Lord and deepening of relationship with Him.
Finally, there is the specific gift of “the evangelist” and there are those who are more given to evangelism. As part of this gifting there is surely a giving of a special desire to see the lost converted. Accordingly, they are given a special sense of the lostness of the lost which drives them further to contact many for the LORD and His gospel. This gifting is given to those brought up in godly circumstances and those brought up in ungodly circumstances.