Posts Tagged ‘commanded’

Romans 10:5-21 — “But how can they call on Him unless they believe in Him? And how can they believe in Him if they have never heard about Him? And how can they hear about Him unless someone tells them? And how will anyone go and tell them without being sent?” (vv. 14-15). Wow, Paul tells us the way it is. He tells that we have a responsibility to share the gospel. We are to tell!

In telling others about Jesus Christ, an effective witness must include more than being a good example. Eventually, we must explain the “what” and the “how” of the gospel. Sure, living a Christian lifestyle in front of our unsaved friends, neighbors, co-workers, and complete strangers is important. Our actions should match our words, certainly. At some point, though, we have to feed the bulldog, pay the fiddler, put our money where our mouth (and those are about as many cliches as I can through in there!) We will need to connect the mind of the unbeliever with the message of the gospel. We often hear people say that they prefer lifestyle evangelism (living by example) rather than encounter evangelism (directly sharing the message of the gospel). Both should be used not one or the other.

We must take God’s great message of salvation to others so that they can respond to the Good News. How else will they hear it? It’s like the old Publisher’s Clearinghouse motto, “you can’t win if you don’t enter.” How will non-believers hear the message of that Jesus Christ died for their sins to make them right with God unless we do actually share the message with them. They can’t be saved if they don’t know. One of my professors at the North Greenville University Master of Christian Ministry program told us that research has shown that, on average, it takes at least 8 direct evangelism encounters before a person typically respond positively to the gospel message. If we don’t share the gospel, how will they know? How long will it take for them to come to Christ if we overlook our divine appointments?

We should not make assumptions about who has heard the gospel and responded to it either! Some people who have been in church all their lives are not saved. They think they are because they go to church, even read the Bible, and do all the right things. As we have noted here in the last few days, doing all the right things does not save you. It comes down to belief, real belief in your heart that Jesus is Lord, that He died for my sins, and that He rose from the dead! At the same time, those whom we see as unsavory in society are sometimes the most responsive to the gospel message. As well, sometimes those who are most antagonistic to the Bible such as someone who proclaims to be an atheist is simply a severely hurt person who simply needs a reason to believe. We cannot pre-judge with whom we share the gospel. It is not our job to determine who will have the best chance of responding positively beforehand. We have never saved anyone. Only the Holy Spirit can do that. We are only participants in the process and it is through believers that God has designed the sharing of the gospel. As we have noted, it often takes at least 8 direct envangelism encounters for a person to respond positively to the gospel. So, there is a great likelihood (probably almost an 88% chance) that your sharing of the gospel will be rejected. But to be there when it does happen is oh so sweet. To watch the Holy Spirit have victory in a lost soul is amazing to watch. Transformed lives after that moment of salvation is just so amazing to watch, so beautiful. What if no one shared the gospel with them?

Clemson and Carolina don’t when their conference championships in football every year but they still field their teams every year in the hopes of winning the championship. And we they do win their conference, it is oh so sweet for the team and for their fans. The point is for these two teams is that you can win the championship if you don’t field the team and put out the effort. Evangelism is our job not just our pastor’s job. We are not called to evangelism meaning only a select few are to do it. We are commanded to do it. We are to just do it! It is not an option. Sure, God grants some the gift of being an evangelist, but Jesus commanded us to go. He commanded us to make disciples. In order to make disciples, the message must be shared. He did not say those of who are gifted in evangelism must go. He said YOU. That’s us! He said to make disciples of all nations. That means everybody. We cannot pre-select who we are to share the message with. We are not to share with only those people that seem the easiest to share it with. We are to make disciples of all. It’s your job. It’s my job. It’s every believer’s job.

The Bible tells us our destiny is the fiery lake of hell if we do not come to saving knowledge of Christ. That’s a pretty important detail that we gloss over in today’s world. Hell is real. Hell is eternal suffering. Hell is being permanently separated from God. Do you really want your worst enemy to suffer this fate? It is eternal. No take-backs. No exchanges. It’s permanent. How can we NOT share the gospel? Wouldn’t pull a person out of a car that is headed for cliff that doesn’t realize that they are headed for a cliff? Sure, it can be uncomfortable. Satan wants you so uncomfortable that you don’t share. But, I do know a guy by the name of Jesus Christ that got a little uncomfortable for our sake. He died and excruciatingly painful death for us. We should share the gospel even if it makes us a little uncomfortable. Just share YOUR story of how God changed your life. Pray that you and I will not shy away from our divine appointments to share life change with others.

We should live ready to tell. How will they know if we don’t tell them! How will they hear if we do not share?