BIBLE STUDY LESSON # 34...JULY, 18 , 2010
Speak Up, Speak Out, Speak Loud!!
As I read through Mark’s study last week called “The Great Awakenings: Revival In America”, I knew in my heart what God was leading me to teach this week. My heart and passion in the Word of God is end time prophecies which you will see to some degree in all of my teachings. So, knowing that, you know that I believe that we are in the last seconds, of the last minutes, of the last days…And knowing that…you know that the underlying message in all of my teachings is for all Christians to prepare for the coming of the Lord… I have to continue on with Mark’s thoughts and ask the question… Once we have prepared our hearts to meet the Lord, what have we done to prepared others? Are we willing in these last days to remain content in our own salvation or are we willing to step out of our comfort zones and seriously share the gospel with a lost world? This message of sharing the gospel is probably one of the most preached on topics in the pulpits and probably one of the least adhered to by the hearers. We have all become little “Pack Rat” Christians…We gather truths of the Bible over the years and store them away…We don’t use these truths in our own lives anymore and yet we refuse to drag them out of the closet and share them with others who might need it. We see loved ones and friends all around us every day who are spiritually dying and hurting and yet we refuse to share with them the one and only answer to their problems (Jesus Christ). Are we ashamed? We weren’t too ashamed to receive him ourselves when our lives were falling apart but we can’t find it within ourselves to share him with others… Pack Rat Christians…We want to hoard Jesus all to ourselves and to Hell with everyone else.
Why is there an absence of God in our Country? Because we Christian pack rats won’t share. We won’t speak up for God and refuse to share him with others who might. I know that personally in my life, when I ashamed of something, I don’t talk about it openly...So... are we ashamed of God and his Son Jesus Christ? Let’s see what God says about being ashamed of him….
Mark 8: 38... 38 For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of him the Son of Man also will be ashamed when He comes in the glory of His Father with the holy angels.”
Well that was pretty much straight forward and in our face wasn’t it? If we are ashamed of him, he will be ashamed of us before his Father and the Holy angels. Someone please tell me, what are we so ashamed of? Why are we so ashamed of the one who died for us and gave us eternal life? I think it is because we have allowed ourselves to become so conformed to this sorry world again, that Jesus really doesn’t have a place in our lives. We should really be ashamed of ourselves but with our foolish pride, Jesus ends up being the one we reject in our daily lives and are ashamed of.
Mark’s lesson focused on revival and how that revival had to start in the hearts of believers like you and I. Mark is correct but I want to take the revival thing just a bit further. Since this Bible study is a “Facebook” group, everyone reading this has experienced the bitter fighting that goes on between Christians up here. We waste all of this time up here arguing about denominational trivialities instead of joining together in the simplistic message of salvation through Jesus Christ. While we are spending our time arguing with each other, countless millions die and go to Hell because we think our denomination and personal beliefs trump salvation, which should be the only focus of revival and winning souls. We have become wise in our own minds but have become fools in the eyes of the world and more importantly, God. The gospel is simple to share and simple to understand…Here is what God’s word says about the simplistic gospel that we so arrogantly complicate…
1 Corinthians 1: 18 - 31...18 For the message of the
cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. 19 For it is written: “ I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, And bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent.”20 Where is the wise? Where is the scribe? Where is the disputer of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of this world? 21 For since, in the wisdom of God, the world through wisdom did not know God, it pleased God through the foolishness of the message preached to save those who believe. 22 For Jews request a sign, and Greeks seek after wisdom; 23 but we preach Christ crucified, to the Jews a stumbling block and to the Greeks foolishness, 24 but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. 25 Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men.
26 For you see your calling, brethren, that not many wise according to the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called. 27 But God has chosen the foolish things of the world to put to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to put to shame the things which are mighty; 28 and the base things of the world and the things which are despised God has chosen, and the things which are not, to bring to nothing the things that are, 29 that no flesh should glory in His presence. 30 But of Him you are in Christ Jesus, who became for us wisdom from God—and righteousness and sanctification and redemption— 31 that, as it is written, “He who glories, let him glory in the LORD.”
God has chosen the foolish and the simple to spread his message of salvation and yet we want to complicate it all through “wisdom” we think we posses. We look for signs and seek wisdom when it all boils down to preaching “Christ crucified”. Don’t get me wrong, learning and growing in Godly wisdom is a wonderful thing and clearly God wants all of us to grow, but when it comes to sharing his love and sacrifice, we must get back to the simplicity of the message of salvation. The lost are looking for simple answers to their complicated lives and the last thing they need is more complication. The last thing that God needs is his servants down here complicating the message that he died to make simple. When you take away all of the rules and laws, Paul tells us that it all boils down to Loving your neighbor…LOVE…
Romans 13: 9 & 10...9 For the commandments, “You shall not commit adultery,” “You shall not murder,” “You shall not steal,” “You shall not bear false witness,” “You shall not covet,” and if there is any other commandment, are all summed up in this saying, namely, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”
So how do we witness to a lost world? Do we have to be Bible Scholars and know the Bible verbatim to be an effective witness? No!!! We just have to follow the simplistic roadmap to salvation that we ourselves followed when we gave our lives to Christ. Let me break down what I believe is all you need to know to introduce someone to Jesus Christ and eternal life…
1.) Recognizing the sin…
Romans 3: 23...23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,
2.) Show them the answer…
John 3: 16 & 17...16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. 17 For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.
3.) Explain what they must do to receive the gift…
Romans 10: 9 & 10...9 that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.
4.) Pray a simple prayer with them…(Example)…
Dear Heavenly Father, I ask you to forgive me of my sins today. Thank you for dying for me that I can have eternal life. Thank you for loving me when I didn’t deserve your love. Wash me clean today as I accept your Son Jesus Christ as my Lord & Savior. I will live for you from this day forward. Teach me your word and teach me to Love…In the name of Jesus Christ I pray…Amen…
You see, in five minutes you can witness the love and free gift of Jesus Christ without being a Paul, Peter or Billy Graham. Once we lead someone to the cross and then to salvation, then and only then does all of the other great spiritual lessons you know come into play. Only after someone receives Jesus Christ are they able to comprehend the greater spiritual lessons.
1 Corinthians 2: 13 & 14...13 These things we also speak, not in words which man’s wisdom teaches but which the Holy Spirit teaches, comparing spiritual things with spiritual. 14 But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.
What good does it do us if we know every spiritual lesson in the Word of God yet Aunt Jenny is lost and going to Hell and we refused to share the simplicity of salvation with her. What good are our spiritual gifts if we don’t share the free gift of salvation and God‘s love?
1 Corinthians 13: 1 - 3...1 Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I have become sounding brass or a clanging cymbal. 2 And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. 3 And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, but have not love, it profits me nothing.
I’m sure that many of you are saying, “Good grief Tim, this is basic stuff, we already know this!” My answer back to all of us is, “Apparently not good enough!” I think we have all gotten away from the basics of Christianity. Sometimes you just have to stop, re-evaluate and get back to the basic truths of what you believe in. Our time to reach the lost is growing very short so I think now is the time to stop and get it right.
Mark’s lesson on revival was so timely for the time we now live in. Again, we do not have to be Billy Graham with a large audience to be an effective witness for Jesus Christ. The revival God is looking for is first within our own hearts and then to the small world we all live in, to our friends, Family & co-workers. If we are not leading people to the cross, our religion is in vain and it is a self satisfied meager Christian existence. Today, let us all, “Speak up, Speak Out and Speak Loud!!!”
Here are a few poems that I've written that you can share with a lost soul.
A LETTER TO A FRIEND".
NO ONE LOVES YOU".
DO YOU KNOW?".
Lord Jesus, we ask you today to help us to get back to the basics of witnessing your love and free gift of salvation to everyone in our own little world. Forgive us of our high minded attitudes and the time we have wasted in sharing the gospel. Help us in these last days to reach as many as we can with the beautiful simplistic gospel. We pray for boldness and the power of the Holy Spirit to go before us as we witness to others of your love.
In the Name of Jesus…Amen
Thanks and God Bless
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