Saturday, July 31, 2010

Preaching to the Choir

As evangelists we often times think in terms of heralding the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ to lost souls, with the goal of loving GOD and loving lost people. AMEN! But I’ve seen it happen too that our preaching also has it’s affects on the people of GOD.

It was Independence Day 2010 when I met Anthony. He is a very nice young man who, as I began to take him through the good person test, revealed that he was a professing Christian. I was thankful that Anthony sensed that he had stepped into a position that wasn’t only about him but also about those who were listening. He graciously allowed me to bounce the “good person” questions off of him without argument.

I had a short conversation with Anthony after the crowd dispersed and he expressed that he was very encouraged by the preaching, specifically the way the gospel was presented. I had just met Anthony so I can’t tell you if he is a Christian or not, but he professed to be a follower of the Lord Jesus Christ. I give him the benefit of the doubt.

As you know, Christians do stop and listen to our preaching. I also understand that all too often professing Christians are some of the most difficult people to deal with when preaching. Nevertheless, by the power of the Holy Spirit, our preaching also reaches out to the Christian and/or church attendees that are being saved.

“Jesus went throughout all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom and healing every disease and every affliction. When he saw the crowds, he had compassion for them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest.”” Matthew 9:35-38
Let’s expect GOD to answer our prayers for more laborers. I used to think in terms of GOD answering my prayer for laborer(s) that He might send some to labor with me(selfish). But I’m not the “Lord of the harvest,” GOD is. He raises them up. It is not my harvest it is, “his harvest.” Let Him send them where He desires.

One of the affects of our,“preaching to the choir” is that GOD may use it as a means to raise up laborers to send out into the harvest. I believe Anthony lives in the Central Valley. I pray that this encounter was the means GOD used to stir this young man up to obedience to preach the Gospel in his home town.

There are other times when we preach that church attendees are listening. This is the case with the last two videos. You’ll hear the father of this family make a profession of faith in the third video. Again, I don’t know him other than from what I know of him from our short encounter. I give this gentleman the benefit of the doubt when he says he’s a Christian.

In the video you’ll hear the father name the church they attend. I can only pray that this church preaches the law, gospel, repentance and faith. But as you know, many evangelical “churches” these days fail in bringing the full council of GOD, but instead entertain lost people to keep them coming back.

Again, from time to time our preaching is for professing Christians that GOD is saving in spite of the bad churches they attend. In the video, you’ll also hear the rest of this dear family profess that they are not sure if their saved.

With all that being said dear Christian, I know I’m not telling you anything you don’t already know but, don’t quit. Just because a person makes a profession of faith, trust in our Sovereign Lord of the Harvest that He has, by His providence, designed this encounter – every encounter. Rest assured, in and through it all He’s working.

GOD doesn’t need you (He need’s nothing from anyone) but you might be the means He uses to save some, draw some, harden some, send some – HE IS THE LORD OF THE HARVEST.

So preach the law, gospel, repentance, faith and exalt the Person and work of the Lord Jesus Christ. Preach to an Audience of One. Preach to the lost. Preach to the professing Christian. But also never underestimate what GOD may be doing when you “Preach to the Choir.”


Friday, July 9, 2010

Open Air Flip Chart

Lately I’ve been using a flipchart and easel when I go to Pismo Beach Pier to evangelize. I’ve used it a bit in the past but lately, it’s been very effective in getting people interested to stop and engage in conversation. Ultimately I know that it is the Holy Spirit who draws these people in. Our Sovereign LORD has all these details worked out.

When I’ve used the flipchart in the past, I’ve used it for open air preaching. And over the 3rd and 4th of July, that is exactly what I did. However, just recently I've noticed that my voice hasn’t been holding out as long as what it has in the past. I’ve been really bummed out about it and would appreciate your prayers. After preaching for thirty minutes or so I need to give my voice a break.

While I’m giving my pipes a rest, I’ve found myself standing in front of this flip chart just passing out tracts. As I said above, GOD has provided many encounters with people during these rest periods in my preaching.

It’s happened a couple of times now where I’ve had groups of 10-20 people stand there and listen to the Law and Gospel preached (a mini-open air) after going through the “Intelligence Test” and Three Triangles test.

Typically what’s been happening is two or three people stop and want take the “Intelligence Test” – then before I know it, there are 4-8 people standing there listening and engaging in answering the questions. One small group after another stops and hears the Law and Gospel! I’ve really been blown away by how GOD has used this. As soon as one group leaves (after hearing the law and gospel) another couple stops and again, before I know it, I’m preaching to another group of people (and this goes on all afternoon).

Below are a few videos from my preaching on the box from July 3rd, 2010 in Pismo Beach. In the days to come, Lord willing, I’ll edit and upload some of the video footage of what I’m talking about above from my efforts on the 4th of July.

Christian, during these warm sunny days, when people are on vacation, taking things a bit slower, take advantage of it, be deliberate, glorify GOD and share the gospel of Jesus Christ with lost people.