Taking the Pressure Off

One of the reasons why churches and church denominations do not make an impact for Christ is that they are usually too focused on fulfilling 1 command.

That effort to get butts into the pew so the unsaved can hear a gospel message has led to the adaption of theories, strategies and other techniques that are not of God and only seek to please the unsaved.

That is not the correct way to do evangelism. You have to do it in the way that pleases God and uses his strategies. When the disciples were out fishing one day, a figure told them to cast their net on the right side of the boat.

After a wasted night of little to know fish the disciples did not want to do it BUT they obeyed and their nets were full. The church needs to obey GOD and JESUS not the secular world to make an impact for Christ

This is what we wrote under an article at The Christian Post as well as an article at Protestia. It is not that we are against evangelism, we just do not like the pressure many church leaders place on their congregations, their students, and even their own families.

When we were undergraduates, just about every male student realized that the local church wanted instant Billy Grahams to graduate and fill their pulpits. That is a lot of pressure for students to bear.

It was and is an unrealistic expectation but that was just the beginning. While we were there, Evangelism Explosion was the fad. If you didn’t sign up you were looked down upon but in an unwritten rule type of way.

Again, that kind of pressure should not be taken place. Instead, the proper way to occupy the different spiritual offices should have been taught and everyone should have been equal consideration. Unfortunately, churches, bible schools, and denominations focus on that one command only.

When you read 1 Cor. 12 you get these words:

4Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit.And there are varieties of ministries, and the same Lord. There are varieties of effects, but the same God who works all things in all persons. But to each one is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good.

No one in the church is greater than anyone else. If you are not called to be an evangelist, then do not try to be one. You are missing the office God has for you.

Does this mean that many Christians do not share the gospel? Of course, not as the scriptures tell us to be ready to answer when people ask why we believe. That means every Christian should know the gospel but they do not need to share it until someone asks.

There is no need to force the gospel down someone’s throat simply to please church, school, or denominational officials. Your duty is to make sure you know why you believe, make sure it is the truth, and be prepared for when God brings those moments to you.

Then, too many church leaders, etc., place an emphasis on how many you win to Christ. But numbers is not  God’s concern, he will take care of that as long as you have the right spirit and obey his word.

When Paul wrote 1 Cor. he began chapter 3 with clear words about how evangelism is to take place:

For when one person says, “I am [a]with Paul,” and another, “I am[b]with Apollos,” are you not ordinary people?

What then is Apollos? And what is Paul? Servants through whom you believed, even as the Lord gave opportunity to each one. I planted, Apollos watered, but God was causing the growth. So then neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but God who causes the growth. Now the one who plants and the one who waters are one; but each will receive his own [c]reward according to his own labor. For we are God’s fellow workers; you are God’s [d]field, God’s building.

This process ensures that men and women do not get swelled heads and become easy targets for evil to attack and bring down. The process makes sure that all Christians give glory to God for the souls that are saved.

The key to evangelism is the first two steps. We need people to plant and water. Without them, reaping will be impossible. How do you do those two steps? By learning what God wants you to learn, living the life he wants you to live, and obey his commands and instructions.

It is not by preaching the gospel every chance you get. There are needs to be met, counsel to be given, words of advice to be shared, and so on. You may not get the numbers of a Louis Palau or a Billy Graham but you are making their job easier.

As we were reading the book The Portable Seminary, we came across a little paragraph biography of one missionary from the 19th century. it reads:

(Alexander) Duff’s aims were both educational and evangelistic, and while he only saw 33 converts in 18 years, these were solid conversions (pg. 568).

The key words are solid conversions. They say that Billy Graham had about 6% of those who came forward remain as Christians, done from memory so the number may be different, but the point is you do not need to get large numbers to please God or win your salvation.

It is better to have 18 solid converts as who knows how God will use them when they are ready. remember it wasn’t the 5 missionaries that opened the doors to that primitive South American tribes by winning thousands of them to the Lord.

It was the fact that they obeyed God and sacrificed their lives for him that opened the door. They didn’t win a soul yet they are regarded as heroes of the faith. Forget numbers and learn your lessons from God well.

You need to be a solid believer first before you can create solid converts. Let God worry about the numbers and you worry about obeying him. Obedience does not always lead you to Bible school or seminary for proper training. That is the path for some people not everyone.

Taylor accepted missionaries who had little formal education, which was a change fromt he societies that were growing more professional. Inmost cases his recruits were fine missionaries and many became superior linqguists (The Portable Seminary, pg. 570).

In other words, you need to be like the Bereans who checked what they were told to make sure they were receiving the truth. You do not always need a college degree to minister to the world for God.

Just make sure you have the truth, and not think you have it. God may not want you to go to seminary at this time. Obedience is key and you can look at your own talents and see what you have that God has given you to use. Then find outlets for those talents.

Just remember to do what Proverbs says and get wisdom, understanding, and as Paul told Timothy, get knowledge. You let God teach you and you will make a better impact for him.

The Bible is full of instructions that help believers know the right way to live. Follow those instructions and everything else will fall into place for you.

When we were still with the C&MA, we were told a little story about a revival taking place in one of the South American countries. During these revivals or evangelistic meetings one day a very prominent man came to the alter. He wanted to be saved.

The only person available to lead him to Christ was a man no one accepted. He was dirty, disheveled, and so on. That man led the prominent city leader, or whatever he was, to the Lord. The next day that man brought in several of his friends.,

The leaders of the revival tried to get them to ‘better and more accepted’ believers to led his friends to Christ. That prominent man rejected their efforts and pointed to the one man the other believers rejected and said ‘we want that man.’

It doesn’t matter who you are, God can use you to reap souls, plant, water, and teach. Just make sure you are living for him the right way. You do not need to be polished, have a great education, or preach in the best churches. You just have to be who you are and willing to obey God.

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