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Tag Archives: Evangelism

Reaching OUT or Relaxing IN

What should outreach look like for the Church? Donald English makes the following observation in his comments on Mark 1:16-20

we today too often expect unbelievers to make all kinds of adjustments—in dress, initiation into our ways of worship, language and thought form—before a proper conversation can begin. We build up our strength where we are, and invite outsiders in to our setting, one by one, so that they are at their weakest and least comfortable. In so doing we put so many obstacles between them and the simplicity of the gospel itself. We have much to learn about starting where people are.

~ English, D. 1992. The message of Mark: The mystery of faith. The Bible Speaks Today (53). InterVarsity Press: Leicester, England; Downers Grove, IL

 
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Posted by on 12/09/2012 in Evangelism

 

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Just passing by

John Wesley (1703-1791), founder of Methodism

John Wesley (1703-1791), founder of Methodism (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A stranger visiting a Methodist community in Britain asked an old Cornishman to explain the obvious morality and spirit of the villagers. He replied, “A man named Wesley passed this way.” And so must the church of Jesus Christ constantly remind the observing world that Jesus of Nazareth is passing by. There is an irresistible contagion about the Christian. Above all others, the preacher—by word and ministry—must preach: Jesus is here! ~ Jones, G. C. 1986. 1000 illustrations for preaching and teaching (p. 303). Broadman Press: Nashville, TN

 

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Evangelism: abstract or actual?

Sounds like an idea ;)

It is not enough to be in favor of something in the abstract. Everybody wants a clean kitchen, but it is not going to happen unless someone takes responsibility. In a similar way, we don’t want to be the kind of church that approves of evangelism in the abstract. We want to be the kind of congregation where we take the responsibility to urge you to take responsibility to pray for and reach out to non-believers that you know. But we also want to give you clear opportunities—otherwise, we are just trying to guilt people to do things that God did not equip them to do. ~ Doug Wilson

 
 

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Protected: Donkeys in the Church

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Posted by on 18/07/2011 in church, Culture, Evangelism, ministry

 

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To be united with Christ

Concerning the Bible teaching in Romans 6 of a believer’s union with Christ, D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones says this:

“… we are not evangelizing truly unless we present this truth – that in salvation we are not merely forgiven … we were in Adam but are now in Christ, … we are taken out of one position and put into another.

Evangelism is not simply saying, ‘Come to Christ; he will do this, that and the other for you.’ No! The glorious thing about salvation is that I am taken out of Adam, that I have finished with him, and am dead to sin. I am in Christ, and all the blessings that come to me come because of my union with Christ.”

The significance of this is often either missed or overstated. It is missed by those who think that union with Christ is for the spiritual elite. But scripture has no such distinction. As Lloyd-Jones says, “this is true of every Christian“. It is overstated by those who claim to have achieved some sort of sinless perfection here and now (or at least aspire to it as possible).

Lloyd-Jones continues;

“… we must never interpret these verse in terms of [our] experience. … What [Paul] is dealing with here is something that has happened to us, something that is true of us … We may not be as well aware of it as we ought to be; … It does not mean that [we] are not Christians, thank God for that. If we were saved by our understanding, and experience of truth, well then, God help us! … we are saved by this tremendous action of God through the Spirit, who takes us out of Adam, incorporates us, implants us, baptizes us into Christ. … he is not dealing with experience, but status, condition, position.”

Unless this is true, any effort to apply or obey imperatives will be fruitless and frustrating. The indicative thing God has done for those who put their trust, faith, hope in Christ is that he unites them with Christ. Discipleship, Christian living, personal holiness is possible because of this, not because of your efforts, your understanding or anything else. It’s all about Jesus!

 
 

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Advantages of Local Church over Parachurch

For those not familiar with the term, a parachurch is an organisation that is separate from, but usually operates alongside and or in cooperation with the local Church. The majority of parachurch groups exist for the purpose of supporting the church. However some see them as competitors and some Christians are, for various reasons, more drawn to parachurch than regular church. Steve Timmis via The Resurgence explains why the local church is central to growing as a Christian.

Take discipleship as a case in point. It’s in the context of church that we are going to learn best what it means to be a faithful follower of Jesus. Parachurch agencies do a lot of good, but they tend to draw people who share a special interest and who want similar things. By contrast, a local church is usually comprised of people from a range of backgrounds, at very different stages of development and with competing interests.

It’s a fact of life that it’s far harder to get on with people like that than it is with people who have more in common. But those are precisely the people I need to make me more like Jesus. It is precisely when the church is a ragbag collection of people who aren’t like each other that “great grace” is essential, and that grace is what turns converts into disciples.

 

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Doctor Who and Christian Symbolism

The British Church of England is allegedly hoping to take advantage of the popularity of the new Doctor Who TV series.

Whilst an entertaining show, some concern over concept versus context is warranted.

 

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