Anything Else is Just A Spaghetti Supper!

Posted: October 13, 2013 in 99-Uncategorized

Earlier this week, I read the this quote from Evangelism Handbook: Biblical, Spiritual, Intentional, Missional by Alvin Reid. It goes as follows:

People may listen to the preacher’s preaching, but they will follow his passion. Puritan pastor Richard Baxter wrote, “That will be most in their ears which is most in your hearts.” Deuwel wrote, “A passionless Christianity will not put out the fires of hell. The best way to fight a raging forest fire is with fire.” When William Booth was asked by the king of England what was the ruling force of his life was, he replied, “Sir, some men’s passion is for gold, other men’s passion is for fame but my passion is for souls.”

This quotation resonated with me because it speaks to the fact if we do not have passion for lost souls, then, what are we doing here? If we do not have a passion for the spreading the gospel then we, as ministers and churches, need to evaluate whether we deserve the names of ministers and churches.

To be deserving of those names, we must have the passion of Paul. He said, “I testified to both Jews and Greeks about repentance toward God and faith in the Lord Jesus Christ (Acts 20:21). If we are not sharing the gospel in evangelistic ways as the flock of the church and as ministers, we will become divine country clubs, where we go to serve ourselves and not much else. We become passionless. When we lose our passion for sharing the gospel with the world around us, we slowly die. There are churches whose idea of reaching the world with the gospel is a free spaghetti dinner for the community once per month. Yet, when no one outside the church shows up, no one notices or cares. Yet, when twenty people show up for church on Sundays, they wonder why the church is not growing. The example must be set by leadership. We, as leaders of the church, must have passion for those who are outside our doors. As the flock of the church, we must take our pastor’s passion in the venues where we live work and play. Christ did not die for spaghetti suppers. Christ died for “whosoever believeth in Him shall have everlasting life.” Even if we do outreach where the passion of it is not to spread the gospel, it’s a spaghetti supper with a different name. Even if we do mission trips with the heart of it is not to spread the gospel, we are just having a spaghetti supper in another state, region or nation.

We should be passionate about spreading the gospel because that is what Christ commanded us to do. We should be passionate about it in our finances. We should provide our churches in biblical ways. There is an old saying that “if you show me your checkbook, I will show you what you are passionate about.” Our local church should have the resources that it takes to reach the lost. Even Jesus had those who financially supported his ministry. Just look at Luke 8:1-3 where it says,

“After this, Jesus traveled about from one town and village to another, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom of God. The Twelve were with him, 2 and also some women who had been cured of evil spirits and diseases: Mary (called Magdalene) from whom seven demons had come out; 3 Joanna the wife of Chuza, the manager of Herod’s household; Susanna; and many others. These women were helping to support them out of their own means.

In this passage, we have the two concepts that we have talked about here. There was Jesus going from town to town. There was Jesus proclaiming the gospel, the good news. And, we have three believers who were supporting the ministry from their own means. They knew Jesus Christ and what He had done for them. They were faithful in doing what was necessary to ensure that Jesus’ team could move from town to town and focus on the message of the gospel. We should be passionate about allowing our church from our own means to be able to do evangelism in a corporate way. We should be passionate about God enough to analyze our finances and begin work on placing those things that we are passionate about that are of no eternal significance in their proper perspective. We should give primary passion to financing the spreading of the gospel through our local church.

Finally, individually, outside of our corporate activities that we participate in through church, we should be individually passionate about sharing our faith. We should be passionate about eternal things. We should be passionate about showing love to our neighbors who are hurting, sick, lonely, cold, and alone. We should have passion for loving these people, our neighbors. We should be treating everyone we meet as a soul that is need of nourishment of the gospel. We should see Christ in them. We should treat each day as an opportunity to share the love of Christ and the good news of what He represents. Evangelism one on one. For it is written in Matthew 25:34-40,

“Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. 35 For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, 36 I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’

37 “Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38 When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’

40 “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’

These are the things we should be passionate about as ministers, as churches, and as individuals. We must see Christ in everyone we touch. We must prioritize our finances to glorify God and not earthly passions such that we can reach lost souls. We must have passion for lost souls. Anything else is just a spaghetti supper.

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