Maraca with Bible Verse

Maraca with Bible Verse
1 Timothy 2:5

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Tuesday, May 2, 2017

An Evangelism Opportunity For D.L. Moody

Here is a really neat story about D.L. Moody, and how he was discouraged one evening, because he did not have an opportunity to share the Gospel message that day.

"One night Mr. Moody was going home from his place of business. It was very late, and it suddenly occurred to him that he had not spoken to one single person that day about accepting Christ. He said to himself: "Here's a day lost. I have not spoken to anyone today and I shall not see anybody at this late hour." But as he walked up the street he saw a man standing under a lamppost. The man was a perfect stranger to him, though it turned out afterwards the man knew who Mr. Moody was. He stepped up to this stranger and said: "Are you a Christian?" The man replied: "That is none of your business, whether I am a Christian or not. If you were not a sort of a preacher I would knock you into the gutter for your impertinence." Mr. Moody said a few earnest words and passed on.

The next day that man called upon one of Mr. Moody's prominent business friends and said to him: "That man Moody of yours over on the North Side is doing more harm than he is good. He has got zeal without knowledge. He stepped up to me last night, a perfect stranger, and insulted me. He asked me if I were a Christian, and I told him it was none of his business and if he were not a sort of a preacher I would knock him into the gutter for his impertinence. He is doing more harm than he is good. He has got zeal without knowledge." Mr. Moody's friend sent for him and said: "Moody, you are doing more harm than you are good; you've got zeal without knowledge: you insulted a friend of mine on the street last night. You went up to him, a perfect stranger, and asked him if he were a Christian, and he tells me if you had not been a sort of a preacher he would have knocked you into the gutter for your impertinence. You are doing more harm than you are good; you have got zeal without knowledge."

Mr. Moody went out of that man's office somewhat crestfallen. He wondered if he were not doing more harm than he was good, if he really had zeal without knowledge. (Let me say, in passing, it is far better to have zeal without knowledge than it is to have knowledge without zeal. Some men and women are as full of knowledge as an egg is of meat; they are so deeply versed in Bible truth that they can sit in criticism on the preachers and give the preachers pointers, but they have so little zeal that they do not lead one soul to Christ in a whole year.)

Weeks passed by. One night Mr. Moody was in bed when he heard a tremendous pounding at his front door. He jumped out of bed and rushed to the door. He thought the house was on fire. He thought the man would break down the door. He opened the door and there stood this man. He said: "Mr. Moody, I have not had a good night's sleep since that night you spoke to me under the lamppost, and I have come around at this unearthly hour of the night for you to tell me what I have to do to be saved." Mr. Moody took him in and told him what to do to be saved. Then he accepted Christ, and when the Civil War broke out, he went to the front and laid down his life fighting for his country."*

The word of God will take affect in the hearts of people who are hearers. They might reject everything we tell them. They might even report us to the authorities. It doesn't change the fact that God can still use His word and work in their hearts. He may even grant them repentance and faith. We can't become discouraged because of how others react to the Gospel message. 

When I was little, if I got a cut, my mom would put peroxide on the cut. She did warn me though that it would hurt. But it was good for the cut. It did hurt whenever she put the peroxide on the cut. 

Preaching the Gospel message is like pouring peroxide on a cut. It can sting and be painful. The person could react to the pain by becoming angry or even vicious. But the peroxide will help the cut heal faster, and the Gospel message will turn us back to God so we can be reconciled back to Him. 

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

New Ice-Breaker Idea

I believe in doing evangelism one on one. I also believe it is good to sow seeds wherever possible. Giving out tracts is a great idea. Talking with people in person is excellent. Serving people in the body of Christ and even, as the opportunities come up, in the world around is, lends itself to demonstrating the Gospel message.

   The hard part for me is to strike up a conversation with someone, bringing up the Gospel message. I have no problem when I am in a conversation with a person, and the subject comes up. But I do struggle when talking about surfacy stuff, trying to engage the person in a conversation, then asking him or her questions that have to do with eternity.

  I will say though, that it is easier to do this on the streets than it is to do this with someone we are trying to get to know, or who we are trying to just become acquainted with.

  So, ice-breakers can be very helpful. I remember reading a conversation Mark Cahill had with a person. He asked the person what he or she would be doing after they graduate high school, then college, then what their plans were after that, until finally, after the person was old and retired, he asked the question, then what? This led to a discussion about eternity. Well, I don't usually have conversations with people which lead to eternal questions, but I do have a few ice-breakers.

   The main ice-breaker I use is my Giant Money tracts, put out by Living Waters. People either love them or hate them. Most people do not realize, until after they have read part of the back, that they are Gospel tracts. I have had people hunt me down to get one. If I have time, and if the other person doesn't seem like they are in a hurry, I can ask them the million dollar question, or I can just ask them a question like, do you know what the word 'Gospel' means? (usually I ask this if they ask me what the tract is. I tell them it is a Gospel tract). I can ask them if they think they are good enough to go to heaven, one day. This can lead to a discussion on the Gospel message.

  Another good ice breaker is using the person's name. Of course, you would have to know the meaning of the name in order for this to work. The name 'Chris' is a perfect example of how to use this ice-breaker. "Do you know what your name means? It means 'Christ bearer'. Are you a bearer for Christ?"

  I got another idea this morning. In the mail, I got an advertisement for a lighted, imprinted pen. I had never seen a lighted pen before, but they are really cool. The pen was a sample to tease me into buying large quantities of these pens. It had my name and address printed on it, and it lights up when you press a button. Plus, they are on sale, according to the flyer that came with the advertisement.

  So, I am thinking about putting something Biblical on the pens. How about this:
     God Is Uncreated
* He never had a beginning
* He has always been in existence

There are other possibilities too. But for now, I can get about 200 of these pens for around $400. The best part is, I can give them away to people who serve at our home. Our home needs a lot of repair work. We are always calling someone to repair something. This would be a 'gift' I could give them when they are done with their work.

  I gave New Testaments away one time, to a group of men who worked on trimming the trees in our yard. Got to talk a little about the Gospel message to them too.

   Plus, these people know how to contact me if they want more information. It doesn't get any better than that! Thank God for inventive ideas and also for being able to use technology to further the message of the kingdom of God.

"Did you get one of these yet?"

Sunday, April 9, 2017

Encounter With Man Who Trusted In 'Knowledge'

     The other day, I went up to two men who were outside of their trucks talking. Gave both men a Giant Money tract. Then proceeded to ask the questions pertaining to the Good Person Test. Both men readily admitted they had broken the Law.

      One man got into his truck and left. I was able to talk to the other man alone, at least for a couple of minutes. We spent almost an hour in conversation with him doing the talking, for the most part.

   He started to explain about 'knowledge', which was his newest, most beloved discovery. He said he had been under pastors and teachers, but really didn't get this 'knowledge' until he spent time in the 'cave' so to speak. The cave represented a time alone in the Scriptures. He also pointed out that the church was full of false teachers and prophets. You can only get this 'knowledge' when you are by yourself, studying the Scriptures.

  He went on and explained that the reason why Jesus had to die, was so that He could be free from the flesh. I asked the man if he were into Gnosticism, and he didn't seem to recognize the term.

   Another thing he pointed out was (when I brought up the sin issue against a holy God) that when we sin, we are really sinning against ourselves.

   To be honest, I was at a loss as to what to say to him at this point. Do I tell him that he is wrong, for believing what he does? Do I let him go on until he runs out of breath so that I can 'earn' some time with him to share the Gospel message more accurately?

   Finally, I just brought it back to the Gospel and his relationship with God. There was no connect. He said he came to know the Lord when he was 32 years old. But it wasn't until he found this 'knowledge' that his life was affected.

   He also mentioned at the end of our conversation, that there were many other books that should have been included in the Bible. The Gospel of Thomas was one of them.

   Earlier in the conversation, he asked for another tract. So, he went home with two tracts. Maybe God will do something in his heart through the tracts.

   I write this as an experience that my readers may encounter. Ponder through some of the things this man has considered. How would you respond to him if you met him on the streets?

    Does this man really seem like someone who was seeking God? Or perhaps, it's just misplaced trust?

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

New Post - New Idea - Potentially New Converts and Disciples

I haven't been able to do my evangelism activities due to a chronic condition that makes me feel terribly fatigued during the day. I have spent a lot of money and time doing research to try to cure this thing.

Anyway, I am mulling over some ideas that I might be able to use to incorporate evangelism into. One idea is really cool, but, I have to work out the logistics and the details which should come later on, if this is something God has for me to do.

This idea comes from a combination of what we did years ago and what another friend does everyday.

You might think I am nuts because I am not a fan of Burger King, but, I can buy a drink there and be ok, probably :)

Sometimes, when we get together with friends, we talk about the things of God, you know, spiritual things. I have had occasions where someone in a nearby booth overhears us talking. Then they start taking an interest. It is really cool and I like this idea. Of course, you always take the chance of those in neighboring booths to not hear a word that you say.

I have a friend on Facebook, actually it is a couple, a husband and wife, who do evangelism every day. They talk to people in their area about the Gospel. They have a focus on people who come from the Middle East. The man meets with people he talks to, at Burger King (don't worry, he eats the salads).

Anyway, I was thinking we could have some kind of intriguing topic to talk about, and we would hope that others will be listening in, and that the word of God will take root. Maybe we could even get to know people and make friends, and ultimately, disciples.

It doesn't have to be at Burger King. It could be at McDonald's (they have good drinks there) or even Chick-fil-a. Wherever there are close tables or booths will work out for us.

What do you think? What are some hot topics that would stir up interest in the spiritual realm?

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Are You Prepared For The Hurricane?

At this time, we are aware of a hurricane that could come our way. In 2004, our town was devastated by Hurricane Charlie, but even as bad as that was, it was no match for Hurricane Katrina. Many lost their lives through that. Are you ready for the hurricane that could hit your town?

We have been warned. We have enough technology available to us to help us prepare for the oncoming hurricane, should it be here in a couple of days. But there is another warning that we must pay attention to.

God tells us in His word that a day is coming where all will be judged for their sins. It will be a horrible day for many. God will tell many, many people to depart from Him and He will have them sent to the Lake of Fire. But why does God send people there anyway?

God is pure and without any sin. He has no defect in Him at all. When God made human beings, they were not sinners. But one day, the devil lied to Eve and she fell for it by breaking a command God gave to her and Adam. Ever since that event, every person who has been born (except for 1) has a sinful, selfish heart. Unless a person repents of their sin and turns to God, they will not be accepted into heaven.

Mankind sinned. God provided a covering for our sins. He made an atonement for us when He sent His Son, Jesus Christ, 2,000 years ago, to live a perfect live, and then to die a horrible death to pay for our sins. He had no sin of His own to pay for. Only a person who has no sin of their own can possibly pay the penalty for the sins of others.

He died on a Cross, was buried, and rose again the 3rd day. He walked around earth for about 40 days then was taken back up to heaven. He is aware of what is going on here and He is praying for those who belong to Him. He is coming back again to take those who are His, with Him. Are you ready to meet Him?

So, will the hurricane hit your area? Will it be devastating to your community?  Will it be life threatening to you or your family? If it is, will you be ready to meet your Maker?

You will not be able to say that you have not been warned!

Friday, May 6, 2016

Evangelism and Boundaries

I don't know what you think of when you hear the word 'evangelism'. The word originally means, 'Gospel' or 'good news'. Here is CARM's definition of evangelism:
The English word, “evangelism,” comes from the Greek word euaggelion. Most literally translated in the noun form, euaggelion means: “gospel” or “good news.” In the verb form (euaggelizesthai), the meaning of the word changes slightly to “announce” or “bring good news.” The Greek word in its various forms appears fifty-five times in the New Testament. In addition to the before-mentioned translations, the Greek word is also translated as “preach.”*

"The message of the Gospel is something worth sharing and telling others about. In fact, we are commanded in the Bible to do the work of evangelism. ".. and he said to them, “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned." (Mark 16:15 ESV). 

But what happens when people think we are harassing them? Sometimes, they see us and they try to avoid us. Why would they do this? I think, many times, they have either had an encounter with a Jehovah's Witness or Mormon. But they may have had a pushy relative or friend who was trying to share the true Gospel with them. Or, they may have seen an open air worker spouting out hatred toward sinners. Who knows?

When do we violate the boundaries of others when it comes to doing evangelism? I remember a time when we were out as a group with some in the church who wanted to branch out and talk to people about the Gospel message. One young man from our group offered a tract to a lady sitting on a bench. She was irate and accused the young man of harassing her. She informed us that he was the fourth person who tried to give her a tract that morning. Was she truly being harassed or was this just a simple oversight by someone who was trying to kindly share the Gospel with her should she have been open to listening?

We have to keep a couple of things in mind when we are doing the work of evangelism, whether it be just giving out tracts or trying to talk to people about the Gospel message. 

First, we have to set a new standard. God does not force Himself on people. That is how the Jehovah's Witnesses and Mormons operate. They us pressure to try to get people into their churches. Sadly, many Christians do the same thing. Sometimes, new believers are excited about their new relationship with the Lord, and haven't grown enough to bear the fruit of self-control, so they, in their zeal and genuine love for God try to pressure family members and friends to respond to the Gospel. We have to learn that salvation is a work of God, and God is the one Who makes the meaning of the Gospel real to people. We are to proclaim it, whenever we can, but we cannot pressure people into making a decision to follow the Lord. We will scare people off if we come at them making them feel pressure to respond to God. On the other hand, people can be under God's conviction and misunderstand by reacting to us in irritation and falsely accusing us of pressuring them to be 'religious'. It takes a skill to know when we are doing the pressuring or when God is doing the convicting.

Second, if a person indicates that they do not want a tract, I don't pressure them to take one. If a person knows that I am going to share the Gospel with them, and they turn away, I do not try to make them listen. What I want to do is leave them with something to let them know that I care and that their eternity is at stake, but I haven't yet come up with a good way to do this without sounding like I have to be the one to have the last word in this disagreement we are having. I have to learn to let them spew their anger and walk away, knowing that God can still do His work without my having to be there to share the Gospel with them. Many already know that they are running away from God, but I do not have to re-emphasize what they are doing wrong. 

So, when do I cross a person's boundaries? I would guess that if he or she says 'no' to taking a tract, if I keep trying to get him or her to take it. Or if I keep pressing to have a conversation with someone who wants to have the final say in our discussion about eternity. Having said this, I will say that there are people who will walk away or indicate that they do no want to talk about the Gospel, only to come back and ask questions or even try to argue. That is ok, and it is ok to follow up with that. They are probably curious but not sure they can trust the evangelist at this point. Possibly they want to hear more, but are making it clear that they have boundaries that they do not want others to cross over. We should respect their boundaries. God never forces us to respond to Him. We have to represent God accurately to people. When we properly do this, they will listen. They might not come to Christ, and they might still argue or try to harm us, but if we are not crossing their boundaries, they are the ones responsible for their own actions.

May God give us words to say to people, and may He give us the grace as we interact with people, as well as wisdom to know when to press in and when to back off. May God fill our hearts with His love for the lost. 

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

What Is The One Thing That You Can't Do In Heaven?

What is the one thing that you and I won't be able to do when we are in heaven? Yes, I know what you are thinking, and the answer is correct, but it is not the answer that the title of this book is asking.
There will be no sin in heaven, but there will be something else that is missing? It is something that we only can do something about while we are living on this side of eternity.

Think again. When you are in heaven, assuming you know the Lord Jesus Christ as your Lord/Savior, there will be a large group of people who will not be there. Only While we are on earth, today, we will  have the opportunity to minister to these people.

One day, you will not be here anymore. Your opportunity to make an impact for the Kingdom of God, here on earth, will be over. There will not be any lost people in heaven.

This book talks about the one thing you won't be able to do in heaven. In heaven, there will be total worship. But in heaven, there will not be any lost people to evangelize. Every day of our lives counts while we are here on earth. Today could be your last day here. What are you going to do about it?