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Sharing the Gospel

In light of the conversation and discussion that took place last week in my absence, I simply want to begin tonight by trying to answer any questions or listening to any comments that you might have.  Then, I will share some closing thoughts for this series.

II.  A Brief Review:
 I began this series by asking the question: what is the goal in evangelism?  My answer is as follows: The goal in evangelism is to look for opportunities to speak the gospel to lost men so as to make them faithful disciples of Jesus Christ.  I tried to note the difference between making decisions and making disciples.  From there we looked at what the gospel actually is and examined the four headings that I identified as critical for sharing the gospel, namely God and Creation, Man and the Fall, Christ and Redemption, and Response and New Creation.  My goal was to help you understand these better and be able to answer certain questions that might arise.  Then we looked at living as Christian and conversing as a Christian and identified common obstacles and how we can overcome them.

III.  A Final Challenge:

 I state all that to remind you that evangelism is not hard, it is actually simple.  We simply speak the gospel to lost men so as to make them faithful disciples of Christ.  The gospel can be explained by dealing with four major thoughts.  By living as a Christian we can add support to what we believe which will hopefully provide opportunities to share.  The obstacles we face can be overcome with discipline and being intentional.  Thus, evangelism is simple right?

Well, in one sense it is simple, but we all know it is not that easy.  I mean, if it is so easy, then why do we struggle so much with sharing the gospel with others?  At the end of the day, it all comes back to unbelief.  Barry was going to talk about this last week but was not able to because of the discussion.  Thus, I wanted to end tonight by dealing with the struggle to believe. 

All sin stems from unbelief.  For whatever reason, we do not believe that is better to be obedient than it is to be disobedient and so we sin.  We have sex outside of marriage because we just cannot believe that it is better to wait for marriage.  We struggle with our self image because we do not believe that we are God’s children and that is enough.  We worry because we do not believe that just as the lilies of the field are taken care of by our Sovereign God, so will we be provided for.  Again, all sin stems from unbelief.

The same is true of the sin of not telling others about Christ.  We fail to believe that Christ has commanded all of us to make disciples, even though Christ clearly states it in the Great Commission (see Matthew 28:18-20).  We fail to believe that the Spirit will go with us and guide us as we talk with others (see John 16:7-15).  We fail to believe that God can use even us to speak the gospel to others and save them (see Romans 1:16-17, 10:14-17).

 Barry put together 5 biblical ways to help us fight unbelief.  Let me repeat them here:

1. Saturate your mind with the Word of God, since, "Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God" (Romans 10:17).

2. Pray, like the man who brought his demon-possessed son to Jesus: “Lord, I believe, help my unbelief.” (Mark 9:24).

3. Pursue holiness.  “The wicked flee when no one is pursuing, but the righteous are bold as a lion.”  (Proverbs 28:1).  A guilty conscience undermines our confidence.

4. Be deeply committed to each other: “Take care, brothers, lest there be in any of you an evil, unbelieving heart, leading you to fall away from the living God.  But exhort one another every day, as long as it is called “today,” that none of you may be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin.” (Heb. 3. 12-13).  In this passage, exhorting one another every day is a powerful weapon against unbelief.

5. Take risks.  Be a fool for Christ.  Jesus said, “And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell.” (Matt. 10.28).

IV.  Conclusion:

I encourage you, fight the good fight of faith against unbelief.  Believe that Christ has called and commanded you to make disciples of all the nations.  Believe that the Spirit will go with you and before you.  Believe that the gospel is powerful enough to save even the most rebellious of sinners.  Fight to believe that you may be faithful in sharing the gospel with others.  May God use us as we faithfully take every opportunity to share the gospel with others.  Indeed, may He, by the power of the gospel, save many to be faithful followers of Jesus Christ.  Amen.

~ William Marshall ~

Last Updated ( Monday, 03 July 2006 )

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