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Tag Archives: evangelism

A Survey about Your Unsaved Friends!

Friends:  I’ll be in Rochester, NY, this coming weekend (March 23-25) for a simulcast with Biblical Eldership Resources.  I’ll give two messages on Saturday — the topic is “Faithful Preaching and the Power of the Spirit.”

On Sunday I’ll be speaking at Northgate Bible Chapel.  During the Sunday School hour I will be asking the following questions about our being a friend of sinners like the Lord Jesus was:

An Unsaved Friends’ Survey
Seven Questions about Your Unsaved Friends

1.  How many unsaved friends do you have?

2. What’s one danger of having unsaved friends?

3. What is one benefit of having unsaved friends?

4. What is one basic aspect of friendship that you might need to work on?

5. How are you praying for your unsaved friends?

6. How should the church fit into your efforts to reach your unsaved friends?

7. What’s one activity you could do with your unsaved friends if you chose to?

Your thoughts?

 
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Posted by on March 22, 2018 in friendship

 

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Some of My Favorite Quotes: The Gospel as Proclamation

 
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Posted by on January 14, 2018 in proclamation

 

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Ten Habits That Have Helped Me in My Christian Life! (Habit #5)

In these posts we are asking what habits have I found helpful in my maturing process as a believer. Reading God’s Word, spending time in prayer, developing an attitude of gratefulness, and being alone with Him are vital to my daily walk.

A fifth habit that I’m working on is being ready to witness to others. I know. I know. Witnessing seems to be such a burden, such an opportunity to embarrass oneself. So how can we take the sting out of sharing Jesus with others?

Here are a few considerations that have helped me. First, I need to remind myself that I am on a mission for the Lord. In John 17 Jesus makes it clear that He has sent us into the world to represent Him. Not to witness is clear disobedience to the continuance of His mission!

Second, I am slowly learning that every person has a story to tell and they just need to know that someone will listen! If we are willing to spend time with others and we let them know we will listen to them, they will begin to open up and share their lives with us. Evangelism by strafing (like a combat plane over an enemy encampment) is not witnessing.

When they know we will listen to their story, there will be places where we can carefully insert gospel truth. Some of these conversations may seem fruitless (like listening for a half an hour to one friend complain about the cost of shingling her house), but they are investments in long-term relationships!

Inevitably those who share their stories with us will begin to ask us questions. And it’s a whole lot easier to witness when we’re being asked questions, right?

In our next post I want to talk about a topic many of us need to really work hard at — the topic of basic friendship! But let me ask you — whose story are you going to listen to today?

“My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry . . .” (James 1:9)

 
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Posted by on January 5, 2018 in holy habits

 

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Four Days in the Book of Acts (Day #3)

We’re taking these four days to think about our own history, the history of Jesus’ church.  We were not founded on a fable, but on the facts about the Lord Jesus (His death, burial, resurrection, and ascension).  Luke in this, his second volume (the Gospel of Luke is his first history), details for us the spread of the gospel and the character of the Early Church.

God the Holy Spirit is quite prominent in this book, but let us notice another characteristic of this story.  One must be impressed with the way the gospel is presented in the various settings.  There is a great emphasis on efforts to persuade men and women of the truth about Jesus!  The Apostles invest much time and effort and intellectual energy in not just proclaiming the gospel, but in seeking to persuade others to believe it!

With Jewish audiences the Old Testament Scriptures are used; with Gentiles reason is employed and even publicly-known philosophical works are quoted (see Acts 17).  The Apostles spend significant time in synagogues and in the temple presenting the facts about the Lord Jesus.  Theirs is not a privately-held set of convictions.  They are in the marketplace — and are willing to pay the price for their witness!

Even before secular authorities who have the power to execute them, the early believers are bold and seek to lead others to believe in Jesus.  Their work is not in contradiction to the internal work of the Spirit of God.  I would suggest the early disciples sought to convince others of the gospel; the Holy Spirit’s internal work was/is to convict those who hear of their need of salvation.

I’m a big fan of Billy Graham, but I wish he had named his magazine Persuasion, not Decision magazine.  Sure, people have to decide about the gospel, but the early church sought to lay out the facts about Jesus logically and powerfully, by the enablement of the Holy Spirit.

Assignment:  In your efforts to share the gospel with others, list one step you are taking to convince them of the truth about Jesus in the comment section below.  (to be continued)

 
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Posted by on December 28, 2017 in The Acts of the Apostles

 

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What Did Jesus Pray About? (Part 17)

During these posts we are looking at the Lord Jesus’ high priestly prayer in John 17.  Jesus says much about THE WORLD and the believer’s “place” in the WORLD.  Sometimes that word cosmos means the physical planet, sometimes the people of the planet, and sometimes the pagan system opposing God and the things of God.

We’ve looked at thirteen of the seventeen uses of that word.  Let’s continue our study by looking at #14 found in verse 21 ….

After Jesus said this, he looked toward heaven and prayed:

“Father, the hour has come. Glorify your Son, that your Son may glorify you. 2 For you granted him authority over all people that he might give eternal life to all those you have given him. 3 Now this is eternal life: that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent. 4 I have brought you glory on earth by finishing the work you gave me to do. 5 And now, Father, glorify me in your presence with the glory I had with you before 1the world began.

Jesus Prays for His Disciples

6 “I have revealed you to those whom you gave me out of 2the world. They were yours; you gave them to me and they have obeyed your word. 7 Now they know that everything you have given me comes from you. 8 For I gave them the words you gave me and they accepted them. They knew with certainty that I came from you, and they believed that you sent me. 9 I pray for them. I am not praying for 3the world, but for those you have given me, for they are yours. 10 All I have is yours, and all you have is mine. And glory has come to me through them. 11 I will remain in 4the world no longer, but they are still in 5the world, and I am coming to you. Holy Father, protect them by the power of your name, the name you gave me, so that they may be one as we are one. 12 While I was with them, I protected them and kept them safe by that name you gave me. None has been lost except the one doomed to destruction so that Scripture would be fulfilled.

13 “I am coming to you now, but I say these things while I am still in 6the world, so that they may have the full measure of my joy within them. 14 I have given them your word and 7the world has hated them, for they are not of 8the world any more than I am of 9the world. 15 My prayer is not that you take them out of 10the world but that you protect them from the evil one. 16 They are not of 11the world, even as I am not of it. 17 Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth. 18 As you sent me into 12the world, I have sent them into 13the world. 19 For them I sanctify myself, that they too may be truly sanctified.

Jesus Prays for All Believers

20 “My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, 21 that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that 14the world may believe that you have sent me. 22 I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one— 23 I in them and you in me—so that they may be brought to complete unity. Then 15the world will know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.

24 “Father, I want those you have given me to be with me where I am, and to see my glory, the glory you have given me because you loved me before the creation of 16the world.

25 “Righteous Father, though 17the world does not know you, I know you, and they know that you have sent me. 26 I have made you known to them, and will continue to make you known in order that the love you have for me may be in them and that I myself may be in them.”

 

 
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Posted by on November 1, 2017 in unity

 

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STUCK! Ten Areas That Will Bury You as a Believer and How to Dig Your Way Out! (Area #10- SINNERS) (con’t)

This is my last message/post on the topic of being STUCK!  These messages were/will be preached at Crossroads Fellowship Church in Augusta (website: crossroadschurchinaugusta.com).  How do we Jesus-followers sometimes get STUCK on the issue of SINNERS?

The reality is we are simply not like the Lord Jesus who was a friend of sinners.  Let’s admit it. We’d rather spend our time with fellow-believers than reach out to the lost.

Our text for this topic is Matthew 11 where we read:

16 “To what can I compare this generation? They are like children sitting in the marketplaces and calling out to others:

17 “‘We played the pipe for you,
and you did not dance;
we sang a dirge,
and you did not mourn.’

18 For John came neither eating nor drinking, and they say, ‘He has a demon.’ 19 The Son of Man came eating and drinking, and they say, ‘Here is a glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners.’ But wisdom is proved right by her deeds.”

Both Jesus and John the Baptist were mocked by their contemporary culture.  John the Baptist was thought to be demonized because of his austere lifestyle. Jesus was charged with being a glutton and a drunkard because of His indulgence in food and drink.  Both austerity and enjoyment were areas of judgment for Jesus’ culture.  Jesus was neither a glutton nor a drunkard, but His social interaction with “sinners” opened Him up to such accusations.

I want to be like Jesus.  I want to be a friend of sinners.  If that is true, what steps must I take to get more like Jesus, to get unSTUCK in this area?  Please write out one step you will take in this area in the comment section below.  And thank you for sticking with me in this series!


 

 
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Posted by on October 11, 2017 in christian growth

 

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STUCK! Ten Areas That Will Bury You as a Believer and How to Dig Your Way Out! (Area #10- SINNERS!)

If you have stayed with me through this series of posts, THANK YOU!   We’ve been thinking about areas in which the Jesus-follower gets STUCK!  Most of these messages were (or will be) delivered at Crossroads Fellowship Church in Augusta (website: crossroadschurchinaugusta.com).

The last area we want to consider is SINNERS!  We get STUCK on the issue of SINNERS!  What are we to do with “them”?  Are we to hang around them?  Avoid them?  Become like them?

This topic of our relationship to SINNERS has become a passion for me.  I’m a SINNER.  How about you?  Someone reached out to me with the gospel.  How dare I spend all my time with fellow-believers, eating only Christian cookies, listening only to Christian music, and going only to Christian meetings?  How dare I?

Our text for this topic is Matthew 11 where we read:

16 “To what can I compare this generation? They are like children sitting in the marketplaces and calling out to others:

17 “‘We played the pipe for you,
    and you did not dance;
we sang a dirge,
    and you did not mourn.’

18 For John came neither eating nor drinking, and they say, ‘He has a demon.’ 19 The Son of Man came eating and drinking, and they say, ‘Here is a glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners.’ But wisdom is proved right by her deeds.”

There is so much in this passage that we are going to take several posts to ponder it.  Please notice that Jesus is rendering a judgment on His generation.  He compares them to children singing mocking songs in the marketplace about Himself and John the Baptist.  “You’re like a bunch of kids pouting because we aren’t behaving the way you want us too!”, Jesus seems to be saying.  These “children” are inviting other like-minded kids to join them in their mockery and derision. What are they so hyped about?

The answer is that they didn’t care for the way either John the Baptist or Jesus lived among them.  And their only response is ridicule and mockery.  John the Baptist and Jesus didn’t dance to their tunes or mourn with their dirges.  And that ticked them off!  (to be continued) 

 

 
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Posted by on October 9, 2017 in christian growth

 

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