Recently, a group of Christian leaders and I were discussing our lives outside of our official capacities. I startled some of them when I stated that most of my friends were unbelievers. “Why?” was the question asked of me. I answered that I had many reasons. One, because there is a tendency among Christians to only hang out with others who believe like them. Instead of engaging the culture around them, they isolate themselves in pockets of piety. Another reason is that it gives me an opportunity to build relationships with people and actually witness to them by my life, as I live out my beliefs. It is kind of difficult to keep either the Great Commission or the Great Commandment when you only surround yourself with fellow Pharisees. The biggest reason though is quite simple. Since I believe that there is only one way to heaven, I also believe that my unbelieving friends will not go with me there. This is the only time I have to spend with them and I want to make the most of it. Yes, I would like to see them become believers – I pray for God’s Spirit to enlighten them daily to the truth. I am cognizant that my words and actions speak volumes about God and I am conscious of redeeming the time and conversations I have with them. I love them and if this is the only time I have with them, if they never become believers and I lose my relationship with them forever – at last I will have had a good one. I will make up time missed with my brothers and sisters in Christ in the forever of heaven, but in the here and now I will continue to spend time with my unsaved friends, in whatever time God will grace me to have with them and continue to pray that they come to be forever friends before it is too late.
Sermon preached at the church I pastor, challenging them to relaunch the church so that we refocus on reaching all peoples. Theme combines the Great Commission with James 4:17, he who knows what is good to do and does not do it – sins
According to the Joshua Project, 41% of the world’s population (2.83 billion) live in groups that are as yet unreached by the message of Jesus Christ. Why? Two thousand plus years after the Savior gave us the command to make disciples of all peoples, why are almost 3 billion people without a witness? Could it be that we do not understand the command to love one’s neighbor as yourself? If I truly love my neighbor, I would want him or her to have what I have – a relationship with Christ.
Some time ago, when I was working in retail, a disgruntled customer, upset over a company policy, told me to “Go to hell”. This, of course, upset and offended me. Yet, is that not what we are telling people when we refuse to share the gospel with them? In effect, we are telling them that we don’t care about their eternal destiny; we are telling them to just, “go to hell”. Now, you may not say those words – but that is what your inaction says to them. When we are broken over our fellow man’s spiritual condition, when we are horrified at the eternal doom waiting for them, when we are motivated to leave the 99 safe in the fold and go after the 1 wandering in darkness, then maybe all peoples will hear and come to Christ.
Because of the tremendous opportunities extended by brothers and sisters in churches across the globe, Discernment Ministries of Montana needed to reorganize to keep up with demand. Our ministry, launched first in 1995, began by bringing discipleship training and missions opportunities to the Big Sky country. In 2005, we extended our training into Asia, at the request of national pastors there. Demand for training in God’s Word continues to increase, so to be better stewards of God’s gifts we are in the process of reorganizing in Ta Ethne. Stay tuned as we share stories of overseas events, mission opportunities, testimonies and resources.