God expects us as Christians to take risks while doing His work. I would suggest the same is true at the level of the local congregation. I’m talking about the risk of failure. How ambitious are we in the plans we have to do work for God? Do we trust that things will be okay even if we try hard and mess up? This, I think, is a part of faith that requires maturity — the faith that God will stick with us even if we don’t succeed by our standards.
Tagged: evangelism Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts
As time and technology progress, we need to abandon our naivete and realize the threats before us. Complaining about the rise of persecutions is normal, but not very productive.
In these times, courage is required to confront Satan and his forces. Yet, it’s worthless unless it’s combined with faith (Hebrews 11:6), perseverance (Romans 5:3) and the spiritual armament constructed by God (Ephesians 6:10-17). In addition, we must be wise, cautious and perceptive. (More …)
Karen, Richard Mansel, and Ron Mansel are discussing. Toggle Comments
What follows is something of a confession. Through the years, I’ve felt no shame or embarrassment to invite churches and individuals to financially support our efforts in missions. In the past, I’ve joyfully extended that invitation, believing fully in our task, as I still do. After several occasions, however, where we have lost larger amounts of monthly support, that ease of asking, that freedom to invite, has been lost. Perhaps it’s partly age, partly feeling tired of the process of fundraising, which I am no professional at doing, nor do I wish I were.
We no longer have a wide base of contacts among Christians, after so many years on the field. In recent years, our friends have heard our pleas several times. How can we then place yet another burden upon them? (More …)
Eugene Adkins, Karen, James McFerrin, and 1 other are discussing. Toggle Comments
Here’s a congregation’s website that streams GBN along with supplemental material of its own on a local radio-station 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
If you have open Internet access available at work you could listen to it no matter what shift you’re punching the time-clock.
Here are the details about the radio-station provided on the congregation’s website: (More …)
On my way to worship I listened to a preacher on the radio from a neighboring county talk about the damage denominationalism has done to the church. He was very emphatic with his words and I am convinced he truly believed what he was saying…especially because he was preaching in a very plain way to/at his own denomination (his own words). And because of the things he was saying about fellowship, I am also convinced he understood the damage denominationalism has done to the church when it comes to the unity that God desires (John 17:20-21).
But despite the fact I believe he understands the damage of denominationalism, I don’t believe he understands the cause.
Why is that? Because of one thing he said. Now I wasn’t able to write it down when he said it, but what I am about to give him credit for is close enough that I know I am not doing any damage to the point he was making; nor am I worried about twisting it in any way to make my point seem valid.
The preacher on the radio said, (More …)
Eugene Adkins and J. Randal Matheny are discussing. Toggle Comments
Women need a feeling of security, say many writers in the field of marriage and counseling. That observation seems to hold true in our experience. That security often means physical and financial security. Though today it’s socially anathema to say it, a woman often looks for a husband who will provide these things for her. She wants to feel protected.
This was Naomi’s prayer for her daughters-in-law, after the death of her sons: “May the Lord enable each of you to find security in the home of a new husband!” Ruth 1.9.
At the same time, we all need security. Let’s first define our terms. The dictionaries give something like this: “1. freedom from danger, risk, etc.; safety. 2. freedom from care, anxiety, or doubt. 3. something that protects or makes safe; defense.” No one can live on the cusp of danger. (More …)
The neighbor’s party noise is patent:
He thinks to drown his sadness with sound,
To fill his empty heart with drink,
His meaningless days, with movement and song.
While dwelling in darkness, dwarfed by loss,
He makes himself out a magic giant.
To save his soul, Jesus sends me.
“The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off—for all whom the Lord our God will call” Acts 2:39.
Just as Paul needed the courage to stand on the pagan Mars Hill and proclaim Christ, we need to stand as a rock in the sea of postmodernism, denominations, and paganism today and proclaim truth. That is the real reason that the world hates us and why the proclaimers of tolerance are intolerant towards us. Truth, by its very nature, draws a line in the sand; it excludes all else.
One of my grown kids recently reminded me of how upset I was years ago when she had to sing a Kwanzaa song so the elementary school would not offend anyone. That’s the problem of the Lord’s church on today’s postmodern Mars Hill. The truth offends, and to offend today is the greatest sin.
Jesus’ disciples were concerned with this. After Jesus proclaimed that it was what came out of a person’s mouth that made him unclean, they said, “Do you know that the Pharisees were offended when they heard this?” Jesus preached truth anyway … because the greater sin is to let the lost blissfully drift by while our hands never extend from the rock of truth to save them.
Do you proclaim truth?
Our tendency is to do what we’ve always done. Call it habit, or a rut, or tradition, or whatever; by itself it is a powerful and problematic motivation. The persecuted Christians who left Jerusalem (see Acts 8:1) took the gospel offshore to Cyprus, to the coastal region north of Galilee (Phoenicia), and to one of the three most populace cities of the entire empire (Antioch; v. 19). These are not Jewish dominated locales as was the place they had fled. Still, “they were speaking the word to no one but Jews” (v. 19). It’s not difficult to understand why. But, the fact that this is all they had ever done was not only insufficient reason to continue in the same way, in this case it was contrary to God’s plan. Our tendencies, if we’re not careful, can put us at odds with God. — Wrong Tendencies | i read the word
David Deffenbaugh has a good thought today that challenges ungodly ruts.
For a no-where-close-to-fluent Spanish speaker, one of the challenges to finding good biblical articles in Española is being able to understand what you’re reading before you print it out and pass it along to others. Other than using Google-translate (which has its flaws) or having an actual translator near-by (which is not readily available in my case) there aren’t a lot of options that I have been able to find … until now. (More …)
On his website Ron Boatwright offers a short course on how to evangelize. It’s always worth one’s while to think more on how to better bring others to Christ.
I was reminded of this effort after a brother asked about resources in the brotherhood about personal evangelism. He has an idea for one also—pray it comes to fruition.
Perhaps you may have good suggestions for more material, courses, or resources to help others become personal evangelists. (The Bible calls them Christians.)
In Luke 5:1-11, Jesus begins to reinforce his inner-circle of disciples by convincing a few fishermen that he was worth being followed.
Some might see Jesus’ choice and say he started off on the hook. Fisherman? Why not a highly respected public individual like a priest or even a temple guard? Why not start off with a well-noted scribe of Moses’ Law or even a beginning-student that had been properly trained by a well-known rabbi? How could someone expect to change Israel (not to mention the gentile world) in the most needed way by starting off with a few blue-collar, temperamental, untrained and unknown fish-net throwing people?
Apparently Jesus wasn’t worried about meeting the credentials of what they or we might think when it comes to who’s worthy of his calling. As it would be said later – Jesus chose them, they did not choose Jesus (John 15:16).
You see, when it came to his inner-circle of disciples, Jesus started off on exactly the right hook! He started off by telling Simon Peter to do something that went against conventional wisdom. Think about it, a carpenter telling a fisherman how and when to catch fish? But that’s exactly what happened…and Peter listened. Boy did he ever listen! And so did James and John. It didn’t matter what anyone else thought. What mattered is that they didn’t take any “bait” – they took the truth when it was presented to them.
When an individual shows a willingness to hear the word of God and follow it, then that person is starting off on the right hook with Jesus; a hook that would make fisherman of men out of these new dedicated disciples; and a hook that can do the same thing with us.
We don’t need to let first impressions keep us from making an effort that can have lasting effects.
“For he and all who were with him were astonished at the catch of fish which they had taken; and so also were James and John, the sons of Zebedee, who were partners with Simon. And Jesus said to Simon, “Do not be afraid. From now on you will catch men.”” (John 5:9-10)
There must have been no greater exclamation among the Jews of the first century than that which Andrew declared to his brother Simon and what Philip told his friend Nathaniel: “We have found the Messiah!” Jn 1.41, 45. One can feel the excitement in those words. The NET Bible rightly ends it with an exclamation point. (More …)
This was one of my main points in my recent report in the US and a tenet of my ministry.
In everything, the emphasis is on keeping things simple and replicable. If the house church becomes overly dependent on one person or one structure, it cannot reproduce itself.
The quoted author seeks to maintain a balance, but tips the scales, rightly so, in my mind, toward house churches.
#house_churches #evangelism #church_growth