Sunday, August 14, 2016

The Undeniably Work of God

Acts 2:22-24 “Men of Israel, hear these words: Jesus of Nazareth, a man attested to you by God with mighty works and wonders and signs that God did through him in your midst, as you yourselves know— this Jesus, delivered up according to the definite plan and foreknowledge of God, you crucified and killed by the hands of lawless men. God raised him up, loosing the pangs of death, because it was not possible for him to be held by it.

Pastor Kyle continued in his Sunday sermon series : “What America Really Needs” and asked, “How do you reach a world that doesn’t believe that they need salvation? One of the biggest problems that Rescuers run into is a person who does not know that they are in dire need of help. They will actually fight the person attempting to save them. Likewise, a person who does not know that they are “lost”, does not believe that they need to be “found”. The gospel truth is that all have sinned, are lost in that sin, cannot save themselves, and destined for eternal damnation in Hell, unless they are redeemed and saved by Jesus Christ. Nothing is more serious. So, how do Christians reach lost people, who don’t see a need for a Savior? “Live and let die” is a James Bond movie; not an option. We must continue the Lord’s mission work and that’s a rescue mission.

Luke 19:10 “For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.”

Christian present the gospel of Jesus Christ to the unbelieving world, build up the faith of existing Believers and defend the faith by “Apologetics” (from Greek word ἀπολογία, meaning "speaking in defense"), which is presenting and giving the Christian argument from the truth of God's holy Word, found in the book of Scripture and the book of nature. What does that look like? 1 Peter 3:15 “In your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect.”

But, how do we get to the place where unbelieving “Seekers”, prepared in advance by the Holy Spirit, say: “I cannot deny what is going on and happening here with this Christian and their church?” The Lord is at work in the world, bringing people unto Himself for transformation daily, but there are ingredients that can be easily missed, behind every great work of God. (1) Praying together. Prayer is the first step, because it is the environment in which take place and where the whole power comes from, for and with you, then spreads like wildfire. (2) Maintain a personal commitment to truth and transforming conversion. Just say “yes” to Jesus! (3) God uses normal, common people. Those Apostles were intelligent and wise, but had no formal education, yet they were used to reach the world for Christ. They were as ordinary as it gets; and so are we. (4) Be recognized as “having been with Jesus” and continuing to be with the Lord, that others may say; “I don’t know what’s going on, but that Christian has something (a disposition) I don’t have in their life … and I want it too.” It’s not what you do; it’s who you are in Christ as you walk in the Spirit.

Galatians 5:22-25 “The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. If we live by the Spirit, let us also keep in step with the Spirit.”

(5) Model everyday boldness in being a child of God and be as effective as possible. Acts 5:29 “We must obey God rather than men.” This may put us out of our comfort zone, but eternity is more important than today. Are your friends, family, acquaintances and co-workers more drawn to Jesus by what you say, write and do? Do not ruin your witness for Christ. The gospel is already controversial, but it is the truth that everyone needs to hear and we are the best messenger. The next-door neighbor’s house is on fire, they are asleep inside and do not know it … and we have a fire truck in our driveway. Are we going to let them perish without trying to bring them to safety? Show kindness without an agenda and invite them to church with you to come and see for their selves the love of Christ. Love; the undeniable work of God which you model daily.

In Christ, Brian

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