Posts Tagged 'evangelism'

Fearlessly Spreading the Gospel

JESUS SPEAKING

            “Whatever I tell you in the dark, speak in the light; and what you hear in the ear, preach on the housetops.  And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul.  But rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.  Are not two sparrows sold for a copper coin?  And not one of them falls to the ground apart from your Father’s will.  But the very hairs of your head are all numbered.  Do not fear therefore; you are worth more than many sparrows” (Mathew 10: 29-31.)

INSPIRED THOUGHTS

       Jesus Christ has commanded every believer to boldly preach the gospel.  Some who are obedient will be despised and rejected; many will be ridiculed and threatened; and still others may even face death.    No matter the consequence, the faithful must never remain silent.  Those who fear man cannot obey God, for man may kill the body, but God has the power to condemn the soul for all eternity.  Remaining faithful is a difficult task; but it is also an essential one.

       In the sixth century B.C., three young Jewish men feared God more than man.  A powerful King named Nebuchadnezzar had resurrected a large golden statue in his own likeness.  On the day it was unveiled he called together the rulers of the provinces and the peoples of every nation; they were then commanded to bow down and worship his image.  The multitudes were warned that anyone who refused would be burned alive.  Still, three faithful believers named Meshach, Shadrach, and Abednego rejected the order (choosing to offend the king rather than to anger God.) In turn, they were bound hand and foot and cast into a fiery furnace.  As the king watched he saw a fourth person accompanying them in the flames; someone who protected them; a man who looked like the ‘Son of God.’ When the boys emerged from the furnace unharmed, the king pardoned them and proclaimed the awesome power of the one true and living God.  Much like Meshach, Shadrach, and Abednego, the apostles remained faithful to the end.  Many were beaten, humiliated, imprisoned and tortured because they refused to remain silent.  Eventually, eleven of the twelve disciples were put to death for the sake of the gospel. Although they perished for the faith, they are not dead; they are alive with Christ, in His eternal kingdom.

      Every disciple is called to boldly preach the gospel; to speak the truth in love no matter the consequence.  Today many are suffering persecution in foreign countries, where Christians are being attacked and beheaded; in communist countries they are being imprisoned and tortured.  In the United States, we have less to fear; and yet we must continue to tell others that Jesus loves them. May we find the courage to speak out today; sharing the gospel with our friends and family. We can also present the message to our neighbors, coworkers, and acquaintances. For when we honor God, God will honor us; and we will walk in eternal fellowship with Him in His glorious Kingdom.

     “Heavenly Father, take away our fear of death and our fear of others; may we fear only You.  May Your words and Your message burn within our hearts; may the gospel freely flow from our lips; that we might share in eternal life with all those who have been persecuted and put to death for the faith.  Also, provide us with opportunities to share your truth with others in love.  We thank You Father, we praise You, and we ask and pray all of these things, according to Your will, in Jesus Christ’s name.  Amen.”  God bless all of you!

Leading Others to Christ

JESUS SPEAKING

    While journeying through Samaria, Jesus became tired and sat down next to a well; as he rested, he began speaking with a Samaritan woman who had come to draw water; during their conversation he revealed to her certain intimate details of her life; details that only God Himself could know.  Amazed and astonished, ‘the woman said to him, “Sir, I perceive that you are a prophet […] I know that the messiah is coming (who is called the Christ.)  When he comes he will tell us all things.”  Jesus answered her saying, “I who speak to you am he.” […] The woman then left her water-pot, went her way into the city, and said to the men, “Come, see a man who told me everything I’ve ever done.  Could this be the Christ?” […] And many of the Samaritans of that city believed in him because of the word of the woman who testified saying, “He told me everything I’ve ever done.”  So when the Samaritans had come to him, they urged him to stay with them; and he stayed there two days.  And many more believed because of his own words” (John 4: 19 – 41.)

INSPIRED THOUGHTS

    One fateful afternoon, Jesus Christ chose to reveal himself to an immoral woman who was attempting to draw water from a well.  She was completely unaware that on that day she would find the Son of God and receive salvation and eternal life.  Upon hearing him recount every intimate detail of her life, she became overwhelmed with joy.  The astonished woman left her water-pot behind and entered the city; seeking to lead others to Jesus.  As expected, those who followed her eventually received the free gift of God.  Everyone who places their faith in Jesus Christ becomes his messenger.  Having been redeemed, we must then strive to lead other sick individuals to the ‘Great Physician;’ the only one capable of mending their wounds and healing their broken hearts.

    Like our ‘Great Physician’, there was once a missionary Doctor who was practicing medicine in a Chinese hospital.  As he sought to alleviate the suffering of his fellows, he surgically healed a man afflicted with cataracts (a clouding of the lenses of the eye that causes blindness.)  A few weeks later, 48 blind men arrived from the wilds of china (each one seeking to undergo the same incredible procedure.)  Incapable of proper navigation, they forcefully clung to a rather long rope.  Not surprisingly, the man who had been cured was guiding them.  These desperate men had journeyed nearly 250 miles before safely reaching the hospital.

    There are so many people in this world who have been blinded by sin and death.  These individuals need someone to guide them toward the ‘Great Physician.’  Like the Samaritan woman, those who have been enlightened are given the task of leading others to Jesus Christ.  As ‘reborn’ Christians, we are instruments in the hands of an almighty God.  If we are willing, He will use us to reach out to our family members, co-workers, and friends.  Our task is to testify concerning the wonderful works that He has accomplished in the lives of all those who believe in Him.

    “Lord Heavenly Father, fill us with Your Holy Spirit.  May we be amazed every day by Your righteous deeds and miracles.  Help us to embrace our obligation to lead others to Your Son.  Provide us with opportunities to witness to our family members, co-workers, and friends; that they would hear our words and greatly desire the gift of eternal life.  We love You Father, we praise You, and we thank You; and we ask and pray all of these things, according to Your will, in Jesus Christ’s name.  Amen.”  God bless all of you.

Giving God the Glory

JESUS SPEAKING

      ‘Now around the middle of the feast Jesus went up into the temple and began to teach. And the Jews marveled, saying, “How does this man know letters, having never studied?” Jesus answered them and said, “My doctrine is not my own, but His who sent me. If anyone wills to do His will, he shall know concerning the doctrine, whether it is from God or whether I speak on my own authority. He that speaks from himself seeks his own glory; but he who seeks the glory of the One who sent him is true, and no unrighteousness is in him” (John 7: 14-18.)

INSPIRED THOUGHTS

      The educated men who had heard Jesus speak were astonished at his perfect knowledge of scripture. Unlike them, he did not attend a notable Hebrew school; nor did he sit at the feet of some prominent rabbi; instead, his knowledge and wisdom came from God (not man.) For their extensive learning, the Jewish scholars demanded admiration and praise; whereas Jesus sought to honor God. To chase after our own glory is to embrace unrighteousness. To glorify God and his only Son is to live correctly.
      One man who thoroughly understood this principle, was John the Baptist. When Jesus began baptizing people in the Jordan river, John’s followers became concerned; they said, “Rabbi, he who was with you beyond the Jordan, to whom you have testified—behold, he is baptizing, and all are coming to him.” John replied, “A man can receive nothing unless it has been given to him from heaven […] he must increase, and I must decrease.” John was devoid of selfish pride. He chose to humble himself and glorify the Son of God (the Savior of the world.)
      Today, although Jesus Christ reigns in heaven, his deeds continue upon this Earth. He performs his miracles through his disciples. Some however, who desire glory, will take credit for God’s works. But a trustworthy servant renders to God the praise and honor He deserves. To glorify God, we must humble ourselves. He must increase and we must decrease. As followers, we forgo admiration so that God may receive what is His? We must speak the words of Jesus Christ; give in the name of Christ; and love in the name of Christ. We must die, so that He can live. Only then will we know immeasurable joy and everlasting peace.
      “Lord Heavenly Father, may You increase as we decrease. May we let go of our selfish need to be praised; that You may receive the credit for the good works that You are accomplishing in us, and through us. May we be vessels of Your love and mercy. Fill us with Your Holy Spirit Lord; that we might always be pleasing to You. We love You Father, we praise You, and we thank You, and we ask and pray all of these things, according to Your will, in Jesus Christ’s name. Amen.” God bless all of you.


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