Archive for the ‘evangelism’ tag
There are many reasons that I need the presence and power of the Holy Spirit at work in my life. But as someone who spends much of his time trying to share his faith, I especially need the Spirit’s influence on my heart and on my words. As I read my SpiritFire devotional today, I said something that I don’t remember coming up with — it is really more a conviction that came across me as I was studying the related Scriptures:
The message of Jesus — its truth, timeliness, and touching power — has it’s confirmation and power in the Holy Spirit.
All three dimensions of sharing the message of Jesus are crucial — truth, timeliness, and touching power — and all three are the work of the Holy Spirit. Without the Spirit’s help in each of these areas, we are just guessing and hope to get it right.
O God, please help me speak the truth about Jesus with an awareness of the appropriate timing in people’s hearts and use the Holy Spirit to give my words touching power to help those I love come to know Jesus more. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.
May the words of my mouth
and the meditation of my heart
be pleasing to you,
O Lord, my rock and my redeemer (Psalm 19:14 NLT).
Last updated on 11.17.2008
For 11/16 Don’t Forget the Main Thing (4:3-6; cf. 1:13-14, 21-23, 28-29)
This message is for Daybreak on 11/16 and Refresh on 11/30.
Because of the emphasis on Harvest Sunday this week – we will have a Harvest Sunday offering this week – I’ve switched the message for the 30th to the 16th and the previously scheduled message for this Sunday (on our center for thankful joy) to the 30th — for Daybreak, it will remain the same for Refresh. In addition, this can be a much shorter, succinct message, which will be important on a Sunday with a special focus on giving to short-term missions and other mission projects at Southern Hills.
Key Passage: Colossians 4:3-6 – I’m staying away from The Message this week because I think it misses some of the basic meaning of the text and because it uses a word or two that could be misinterpreted – the phrase “don’t miss a trick” sounds manipulative to me in the context of sharing our faith and living before people to influence them to Jesus. However, the Easy to Read Version here is pretty good:
Also pray for us. Pray that God will give us an opportunity to tell people his message. I am in prison for doing this. But pray that we can continue to tell people the secret truth that God has made known about Christ. Pray that I will say what is necessary to make this truth clear to everyone. Be wise in the way you act with those who are not believers. Use your time in the best way you can. When you talk, you should always be kind and wise. Then you will be able to answer everyone in the way you should.
Years ago, four university ladies in Abilene began to care for an older African American woman who had severe diabetes and was confined to her wheel chair because she had lost most of her lower extremities. For two years, these young women made sure she had food and friendship. Eventually, however, her body gave out and she died. As the preacher in town began to meet with these four young women and the few members of this lady’s family, it became clear that the woman had never made a commitment to Jesus. While what the four young ladies did was admirable, really in those days it was courageously kind, they never took time to visit with this dying woman and talk about her walk with Jesus, her need for grace, her opportunity for baptism and the gift of God’s forgiveness and the power of the Holy Spirit.
In today’s world, under the banner of not judging anyone, we often neglect the opportunity to talk about the most important news of all – the good news Jesus and the opportunity of the Kingdom of God into people’s lives. In the middle of doing lots of good things, we must not forget the main thing. So today, I have only one point: let’s not forget the main thing!
And what is that main thing? Bringing people into a saving relationship with Jesus. John 3:16-17; Colossians 1:13-14 & 21-22
- It’s easy for us to lose focus and neglect this – why we try to guard the Fall
- It’s easy for us to forget how blessed we are with the Hope we have
- We become like the ancient railroad signalman who forgot to light his lantern
Basically, Paul tells these new believers in Jesus to …
- Pray for him to share the message of Christ
- Live for opportunities to share the message of Christ (cf. 1 Peter 3:15-16)
What makes it hard to live with “the main thing” in mind?
What is the difference between sharing our faith – our story about what Jesus has done in our lives and our reason for hope in Jesus (1 Peter 3:15-16) – and being an evangelist?
Do you have a story to share with folks about what Jesus has done in your life?
Can you share with someone what they need to do to become a true follower of Jesus?
What makes it especially hard for us to share our faith with others where we live?
Does living for “the main thing” mean we are just nice to people to get them to become followers of Jesus?
How do we genuinely engage in conversation and enter into the life of people that God brings into our lives?
What do we do if they reject our respectful efforts to share Christ with them?
1 Corinthians 14 identifies 3 different types of folks who come to our worship gatherings – brothers and sisters (brethren), unbelievers, and inquirers (mentioned several times but look especially at (vs. 24-26).
What are you doing to make friends and enter into relationship with unbelievers?
What is the difference between inquirers and unbelievers?
What are you doing to share your faith and the way to respond to Jesus with inquirers?
What do I need to do to be prepared to share “my story” and to share Jesus with others to whom God leads me?
What difference has knowing Jesus made in your life?
Using Acts 2:22-47, outline what people need to do to come into a saving relationship with Jesus.