Christianity is declining in America at an alarming rate. Our nation is suffering morally and spiritually with no differentiation between Christians and lost people. Christians are committing the sin of silence and are putting their lamps under a basket Instead of sharing the Gospel message. Without Christians dutifully carrying out the mandate of the Great that I must change from inaction to action and from fear to boldness.
I pray that the reader of Share Jesus Without Fear will draw a similar conclusion. Share Jesus Without Fear- Critique The Sin of Silence is one of the most disobedient acts that a believer of Christ can commit and is responsible for the failure of the church as a community in this country. Bill Fay states “If you and the members of your church have forsaken your duty to reach back into the world, I can promise you your church will start to divide, backbite, and to fight over nonessential Christian issues like hymnal selection and carpet colors. (Fay & Shepherd, 1999 p. 7) Like many churches, we reviewed the annual budget for the new year Just before Christmas time at our monthly business meeting. People seemed to perk up when the discussion of finances was tabled and one could sense the claws coming out. One deacon made a motion to review the staff positions and their salaries In order to determine whether all expenses were justified and if there might be an opportunity to save the church some money by alleviating some superfluous staff positions.
I sat in amazement wondering if I had heard this gentleman correctly and whether he was seriously considering cutting back on church ministry in order to preserve church funds. At the ext month’s business meeting the same deacon launched a tirade against the pastor regarding the purchase of a new computer and projector for the sanctuary which was purchased with non-utilized funds. When the man didn’t get the answer he wanted to hear, he stormed out the back of the church and slung the door closed behind him. What kind of message are we sending with our actions?
Towed allow opportunities to compromise our testimony by living a dual life; one In church and one without? I am convicted that we, being Christians at large, are falling when It omens to the Great Commission. The statistics prove that we are moving backwards as a nation and the number of uncrushed adults is progressing at an alarming rate according to recent Barn polls. The following is an excerpt from that poll: There has been a 92% increase in the number of uncrushed Americans in the last thirteen years. In 1991 there were 39 million uncrushed Americans compared with 75 million currently. 2004) (http://www. Barn. Org/Flagella. Asps? Page=Topic&TopiclD=38) In Matthew 28:19 Jesus says “_Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit Jesus has Instructed us to go and make disciples and our nation’s church attendance is declining at an unprecedented rate then what Is the disconnect? It’s obvious to see that we have become the problem Instead of the Intended solution that Jesus prescribed to his disciples and to his church.
Accepting that fact, I believe we are In desperate need of an equipping manual like Share Jesus Without Fear. Even as a preachers son I Ana never encountered ten answer to “How 00 1 snare my Talent*’ I live this is something that every Christian must know without respect to evangelical labels or the like. Our author, Bill Fay, teaches us the way to turn any conversation to a non-confrontational discussion by asking the first of five innocuous questions: “Do you have any spiritual beliefs? ” (Fay & Shepherd, 1999, p. 3) This gives the person you are talking with an opportunity to talk about spiritual matters and gives you an important opportunity to listen. It’s important to remember that we are not listening in order to debate but in order to determine where a person is with Edgar to the Holy Spirit. After listening to the person describe their spiritual beliefs, you can ask the second question: “To you, who is Jesus? ” (Fay & Shepherd, 1999, p. 33) This is crucial to determining the position of the person regarding the son of God.
Some deny Him, others demean Him by saying that He was a good guy or a prophet while some acknowledge that He is the son of God but admit that they don’t know him. This will lead you to asking the next question: “Do you believe there is a Heaven and a Hell? ” (Fay & Shepherd, 1999, p. 33) The lost need to know that Hell is real, Satan is real and that they are caught in the midst of a battle whose outcome will determine the disposition of their soul for eternity.
They also need to know that Hell was not created for God’s people and that He desires that none should be lost and that all will be saved yet without Jesus, none will be. The next question is the imperative one that presses the urgency of the matter “If you died, where would you go and why? ” (Fay & Shepherd, 1999, p. 33) This prompts the individual to examine themselves and opens the sets the groundwork for you to convey the Good News of Jesus Christ. The final question in the series is “If what you are believing is not true, do you want to know? (Fay & Shepherd, 1999, p. 33) We live in an age of apostasy and it burdens me to think that the only time a person may ever hear the Gospel message presented, it could be tainted with corruption whether it be greed, manipulation or cult recruitment. It is absolutely critical that we present the Gospel in it’s purest form with no agenda of our own except the Lord’s will be done. “God’s word penetrates and changes hearts toward his Son. ” Hebrews 4:12 says “For the word of God is living ND active.
Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrated even to dividing soul and spirit, Joints and marrow; it Judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. (Fay & Shepherd, 1999, p. 41) Bill Fay points out to his readers that there is tremendous power in the word of God and recommends that we evangelize with the Sword at hand. He shares seven particular scriptures that take the lost person from identifying with their own sinful nature through God’s plan for salvation and ultimately releases them at a point of decision where Jesus is portrayed standing at the door and mocking.
Bill Fay typically will encourage the person being witnessed to to read the material for themselves and then ask them “What does this say to you? ” (Fay & Shepherd, 1999, p. 46) This invites the Holy Spirit to the process and allows for it’s supernatural power to permeate the non-believer’s heart and mind, stills their objective mindsets and calms their flight response. This is not something that even the best evangelist can do on his or her own volition. You must be mindful always that salvation comes through faith and that is a gift from God.
It is not produced by the work of man. Lastly, the individual may be offered an opportunity to admit their sin, to surrender, repent and believe in Jesus as their Lord and Savior. The author OTTers a series AT Twelve more questing to lead ten person In tenet conversion wanly I accept as a convenient framework for leading someone to the door; it is at that point that I believe the person should pray out the contents of their heart rather than following a cookie-cutter recital. Jesus says that he wishes we would tear our hearts and not our clothes.
I believe this is an area that the Holy Spirit is critical in the process by conveying the unheard utterances of our grief and repentance to the Lord. Solomon stated that the whole duty of man is to fear God and keep his commandments. I can not imagine standing before my God on Judgment day and answering the question “Why did you never share the Gospel with those who so desperately needed it? ” I can not say that I was afraid, nor can I say that I didn’t have time and I can no longer state that I have arrived at this point in my life and don’t know how to share the message.
I hope that I can spread this conviction to other Christians and help them to understand that evangelism is not an obligation but a magnificent privilege. I am afraid of what types of persecution may come our way when Christianity is abandoned in this country that was founded upon it. I feel that there is an urgency to share the message with people who are hurting and suffering and searching for answers. I pray that God will prepare the hearts of those who will cross my path in this lifetime and that I will be an obedient and effective witness for Him. References