Urgent Message   Leave a comment

“In the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who will judge the living and the dead, and in view of his appearing and his kingdom, I give you this charge: Preach the Word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage – wtih great patience and careful in struction.”  2 Timothy 4:1-2, NIV.

 

All of those with the spiritual gift of evangelism said, “AMEN!”

 

Those without it sometimes say, “That’s right.  You go catch ’em; we’ll clean ’em.”

 

Paul’s letters to Timothy are certainly viewed as words of wisdom from a minister to a mentor recipient.  Most call the Timothy letters and Titus “The Pastoral Epistles” and understand that to mean “letters to preachers.”  Indeed, they are all of that, but also more.

 

One of the comments Paul makes to Timothy in that same paragraph is, “do the work of an evangelist.” 

 

“That’s right.  Go, preachers, go!”  After all, weren’t the only ones present at Jesus’ giving of the Great Commission the eleven extremely faithful?  Wasn’t it up to them alone?  Didn’t they all turn out to be proclaimers’ of some sort?

 

A careful study of all the Gospels teaches us that those questions, while they may sound right, have to be answered in negative terms.  How many times did Jesus heal somebody and tell them to go show the priests, or go tell their family and friends what God had done for them?  On some, he used reverse psychology because he told them to tell nobody and they couldn’t stop telling others!

 

While it is certainly true that all God-called ministers are to follow this example and be about the business of introducing people to Jesus Christ, it is not by any means solely their responsibility.  I am of the opinion that everyone who has had a salvation experience with Jesus Christ are the ones who have the responsibility of doing the work of an evangelist. 

 

You don’t have to be carrying the world’s largest Bible everywhere you go, prepared to thump the naive at any given moment.  You don’t have to wear those human-sized billboards and stand on street corners and soap boxes screaming the joy of salvation and the perils of hell.  You don’t have to stand up on Sunday morning, take the microphone, and tell a group of worshipers what Christ means to you.

 

But there are things that you can and should do. 

1. Understand the importance of introducing people to Jesus.  After all, this really is an urgent message that needs immediate delivery.

2. Understand that you have a story to tell – the story of your personal encounter with Christ.

3. Understand that you do not have to have the “Roman’s Road” passages memorized, even though knowing how to lead someone into their own encounter with Jesus is important.

4. Understand that you encounter people every day who don’t know Jesus as Lord and Savior.

5. Understand that you are on the front lines in the battle between good and evil, and that you already know how the story is going to end……GOD WINS!

6. Understand that on those front lines, it is sometimes a matter of a simple smile, offering to go the extra mile to help someone, meeting unkindness with kindness, sharing with others the source of your joy, invitations to Christian groups/events, and at other times it is taking advantage of an opportunity to share scriptures and helping someone meet Jesus personally.

 

Obviously, the point is for you to understand.  If you have a relationship with Jesus Christ, it isn’t a matter of what you know; it’s Who you know that matters the most.  If you take Who you know with you to the store, work, school, play, etc., then He will be right there to help you introduce others to Him. 

 

It is my job and yours to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  Knowing that people are dying without Him every day is our motivation to share our faith.  You never know when you or the person you’re working next to may take the last breath.  Make sure that they have heard or seen from you, in some form or fashion, what Jesus Christ means to you.

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