Wednesday, 9 June 2021

How to Evangelize

 Scripture:  Matthew 28 v 18 - 20: "And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.

19  Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: 
20  Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen."

Basically, spreading the gospel is easily explained - Go and Tell.  Most people are not sure how to get started.

Firstly, religious people like their privacy and therefore don't like to talk about it.  Maybe they don't want it challenged as truth can be a problem.  However, Christianity is not private, its for everyone and it is not secretive.

Jesus is alive today, and His death on the Cross brought our dead souls into Him so that we were united in death.  A miracle happened there, He took our death up in Himself and gave us His life.  Everyone who believes He is the Son of God and our Saviour receives eternal life starting now.

If He is rejected for any reason, salvation is forfeit.  So the reasons for sharing the gospel is to save people from Hell.  It's a real place, its a place of torment by a fire that never burns out.  The spirit of man is also eternal, it cannot die, so if consigned to Hell its a horrible way to spend eternity.  Jesus went to extreme lengths to prevent this for everyone.

We need to make Him real.  People do not have enough of the right information about Him.  Many only go to church on Christmas and Easter and never hear the full gospel.  They see Him as a baby in a manger or dead on the Cross.  We need to change the way Jesus is perceived.

The real story to tell is the testimony of why and how you met Jesus.  How He changed you.  How you felt when you knew you were forgiven and cleansed of sin.  How baptism in water affected you.  Maybe He healed you of some affliction.  Knowing Jesus changes you from the inside out.

With me Jesus became real when I knew I needed God but did not know where in the Bible I could find the answer to my problems.  I had a brand new Bible in cellophane wrapping.  It was a soft cover like a novel.  Not easy to open.  I cried out to God and waved this Bible in the direction of where Heaven might be.  Suddenly this tightly closed book fell open, yes it was held open, on Psalm 51.

I got saved on psalm 51.  It is the only place in the Bible where the salvation prayer is all in one place. 

Psalm 51:  " 1  To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David, when Nathan the prophet came unto him, after he had gone in to Bathsheba. Have mercy upon me, O God, according to thy lovingkindness: according unto the multitude of thy tender mercies blot out my transgressions.
2  Wash me throughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin.
3  For I acknowledge my transgressions: and my sin is ever before me.
4  Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, and done this evil in thy sight: that thou mightest be justified when thou speakest, and be clear when thou judgest.
5  Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me. 
6  Behold, thou desirest truth in the inward parts: and in the hidden part thou shalt make me to know wisdom.
7  Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.
8  Make me to hear joy and gladness; that the bones which thou hast broken may rejoice.
9  Hide thy face from my sins, and blot out all mine iniquities.
10  Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me. 
11  Cast me not away from thy presence; and take not thy holy spirit from me.
12  Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; and uphold me with thy free spirit.
13  Then will I teach transgressors thy ways; and sinners shall be converted unto thee.
14  Deliver me from bloodguiltiness, O God, thou God of my salvation: and my tongue shall sing aloud of thy righteousness. 
15  O Lord, open thou my lips; and my mouth shall shew forth thy praise.
16  For thou desirest not sacrifice; else would I give it: thou delightest not in burnt offering.
17  The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.
18  Do good in thy good pleasure unto Zion: build thou the walls of Jerusalem.
19  Then shalt thou be pleased with the sacrifices of righteousness, with burnt offering and whole burnt offering: then shall they offer bullocks upon thine altar."

From 9 pm till morning I read this psalm over and over, broken and contrite before Him, calling on Jesus to create a clean heart in me.  Weeping my way into His Kingdom, and o the peace that flooded my whole being.  It was so powerful the peace that the Prince of Peace brings, it consumed all my fears, worries, problems, stress.  And it never runs dry.

Truly His peace is a gift that keeps on giving.  It's wrapped in love, kindness, patience and joy.  I have been through some rough patches but His peace has been constant and tangible throughout.  With that peace the pressures of this world are manageable, the disappointments are less profound, life is worth the living just because He lives.

Whatever your experience of Jesus may be, you need to share it with others.  If they are ill, pray for healing.  If they are depressed, bind and cut off the spirit of heaviness (that's what the Bible calls it) and send some joy into their souls.  You are able to transmit peace like a stream flowing from your innermost being, joy and love too.  You are a new creation, no longer only human.  Spread it around.

If everyone who knows Jesus in a personal relationship would do these things the world would be impressed.  But it seems people are scared to be seen as followers of Christ Jesus.  They hide their light under a rock.

You need to shine the light of Jesus into their darkness and blind the enemy long enough to get past his blockages and restrictions.  In other words, say or do something attention grabbing that will spark some curiosity.  Share a testimony of healing or some wonderful escape from a potential hazard that should peak their interest. 

Make Christianity inviting.  It's a way of life like no other.  It's not a Sundays only event.  It's wall to wall life every minute of every day.  That's how the early church survived and grew.   The evangelists attracted crowds by their healings and miracles.  They would cast out a deaf and dumb spirit and the afflicted person would both hear and speak.

They would open blind eyes, heal lepers, raise the dead and draw thousands to Jesus.  Read "Like a Mighty Wind" by Mel Tari.  The power of the Holy Spirit fell on this Presbyterian Church in East Timor and spread across this region.  I met Mel Tari some years later in South Africa and he was such a genuine, dedicated man of God. This book will change your life! (I have it on Kindle).

Revelation 12 v 10 - 11: "And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night.
11  And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death."

The Blood of the Lamb wipes out sin.
The word of your testimony brings truth.
No fear of death brings conviction.

As one great evangelist said Let us plunder Hell and populate Heaven!  We have to love sinners but not sin.  They are our mission field.  We must find a way to draw them to Jesus.  It's our only task.

Prayer:  Heavenly Father if I have not started this one task yet, I am sorry, please forgive me and open my eyes and heart to the very real danger those I love are in.  Help me find a way past their objections to show them Jesus the only way, truth and light to reach You.
Psalm 51 v 13 shall be my mission.  In Jesus' name. Amen.