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Archive for March, 2009

Some things that I have learned about evangelism over the years:

 

Lead someone to Christ, not church.

  • Christ is the focal point of the message. We’re to preach and proclaim Christ. Our message is about Christ, Christ crucified and Christ risen from the dead, seated at the right hand of God the Father.
  • Church is secondary to Christ. Too many are in the church without having a personal relationship with Christ. If we can lead people to Christ first, then we can get them into church (as long as we have some Christians who understand being Christ-like is part of our calling).

Share the good news of Jesus, not the good things about your church.

  • The best we have to offer unbelievers is an invitation to have a relationship with Christ. He is the good news embodied in both body and spirit.
  • It’s good to have a depth of knowledge about the various programs and ministries of your church. Yet, at some point, you will need to know who Christ is and what He did in order to give the world hope for salvation.
  • In evangelism, the core of our knowledge must center around Christ and His mighty works.

Christ is the Savior, while church is the sanctuary.

  •  Christ said it best. No one gets to the Father except by Him. He is the Way.
  • There is no salvation without the Lamb of God. Church cannot save anyone. A person can be in church all of their life and still go to hell if he or she doesn’t know Christ as Lord and Savior.

We are to make disciples of the Divine, not our denominations.

  • The Lord gives the increase just as added to the church those who would be saved in the early church of Acts.
  • We are called to make disciples of Christ, not disciples of our denominational creeds and charters.
  • Check your Bible. Identify any denominations by name in the New Testament. We are to hold on to the Word of God, not the words of the founding fathers of our particular practicing denomination. Theology isn’t relative; it’s relational as it relates to Christ.

For Your Information:
Operation Reach Out launches Love Your Neighbor April 5th through April 12th. Join the effort to reach out to the local community with Christian love day by day.

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FAITH CANNOT FAIL
Faith cannot fail. Let me correct that. Faith in God cannot fail. You see, we can put our faith in the wrong thing or even the wrong folks and end up sorely disappointed and dejected. We can find ourselves looking for answers from those who cannot produce answers and seeking solutions from those who are more focused on the problem than the solutions, only to find ourselves still stuck without any support.
Our faith should be in God. God never fails. The psalmist tells us that we should not put our trust in man since he cannot do anything to help us. Our faith should be placed in the all-knowing, all-seeing, and all-powerful God, the Almighty.
Having faith does not mean that we will get everything that we want or even everything that we expect. Having faith in God means that we have put our full trust and reliance in and upon Him. God is able. The issue is whether He is willing or not. God will not do what is outside of His will or His character. We cannot expect anything different from Him.
Beware of what you put your faith in these days. The stock market has proven as much. Real estate and home prices have shown us as much. The job market is continuously telling us the same thing, too. Watch where you put your trust! Marriages failing into divorce. Children disrespecting their elders. Grandchildren abusing their grandparents. Pastors and spiritual leaders caught up in scandal. God will never fail.

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The Lord is good, a refuge in times of trouble.
He cares for those who trust in him.
-Nahum 1:7 (NIV)

Consider the challenges before President Obama and his cabinet. From untangling a monetary mess of an economy to restructuring and rewriting some key policies for labor, stem cell research, and other hot-button issues, these national leaders face countless challenges with bipartisanship and those who are bummed-out over bailouts. In comparison, look at today’s spiritual leaders such as T.D. Jakes, Charles Swindoll, and Billy Graham. Imagine what they have to face as they seek to shepherd the flock of God. Take into consideration what weighs heavy upon them as they seek to serve the Lord with gladness.

The prophet Nahum spoke out against the wicked and cruel nation of Assyria. The name Nahum means “comfort,” and it is certainly comforting to read this description of God in times of trouble. Imagine Him as a refuge, a place where you can feel protected and guarded from danger and harm. Not only is He good, but He extends His care to those who trust in Him. Peter was saying something similar when he wrote: Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you (1 Peter 5:7). We are blessed to be in the care of one such as God Himself. Trust Him with your worries. Trust Him with your burdens. Trust in times like these like you’ve never trusted Him before. He’s worthy!

For Your Information:
Recently, I started trying to get back into shape. Yes, I mean physical shape but I was also intrigued on staying balanced spiritually. What do I mean? Oftentimes, we can become out of balance as Christians, even with our intake of the Word. We can get wrapped up in reading Psalms so much that we rarely visit the pages of the Pauline epsitles. Our attention can be on the Gospels without giving any attention to minor prophets. a friend of mine in the ministry made the suggestion of taking on a Bible reading plan such as the One Year Bible to keep such a balance. If we are what we eat, then we must be mindful of maintaining a balanced diet, even with the Word.

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Wisdom is the principal thing. . . – Proverbs 4:7 (KJV)

These days we can see where lack of wisdom can get someone into a little bit of trouble. From Chris Brown to T.I., we find young brothers facing charges for everything from assault and battery to weapons violations. Would I rather have wealth or wisdom? It appears that wealth does not guarantee wisdom. With wisdom, I can at least manage my wealth. I say so because we see how the Bernie Madoff scandal and other economic turmoils have caused a major stress and strain among baby boomers and others. To exercise wisdom in such times, we have to be careful enough to use discretion and discernment beyond dollars and cents. Pray to the Lord for wisdom, much like Solomon did before he even made an executive decision.

BEYOND BELIEF:
I can”t believe how some folks can be in church so long but have so little faith. My soul grows weary of people who have been in the building but don’t feel a part of the Body. I recently read Chuck Colson’s The Body and still feel excited about what the Lord has to say about ministry. Let us not lose hope. Our work is not in vain.

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