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Gideon

Why Our Evangelism Efforts are Failing....

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10 hours ago, Cletus said:

if they do not see fruit in our actions they will not listen to our words. 

How do you know this is true?  I don't recall Jesus or Paul telling us this is the way to evangelize.  Yes, they will know us by our fruits but people are saved by gods word, hearing his gospel.  

If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.  For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved. As Scripture says, “Anyone who believes in him will never be put to shame.”For there is no difference between Jew and Gentile—the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him, 13 for, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? And how can anyone preach unless they are sent? As it is written: “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!" Romans 10:9-16 ESV

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I agree brother with what you are saying, ...may I add another tidbit, ...you have alluded to it, the lack of the Holy Spirit operating in the Church, the lack of sound Biblical teaching, by the Holy Spirit as to what His place is in the Church, how He functions and What His will is for each individual child of God in the Church, ...so that He can use that local Church for the purpose He has planned for them before the foundation of the world.

It's so refreshing to hear this rather that the usual bickering and arguing we see here, ...which just proves what you have said is true!

Lord bless

 

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2 minutes ago, Jostler said:

It is our LIFE that is the witness,

A witness is some one that has actually seen what they are testifying about, first hand knowledge, and not one that is just repeating second hand knowledge as to what they believe to be true. 

A witness is always judged as to their appearance, is this person someone we can trust or believe. ...our modern day jurisprudence system proves it, ...that's why the attorneys always dress up there clients and witnesses, ...even the world knows this! 

Lord bless

 

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1 hour ago, Cletus said:

I am not saying Gods Words is not what saves them.  but i am saying if we are just like the world... if we aint salty... when they see us, and they see themselves, and they dont see light, what then will the desire from us?  what then do we have to offer them?  a theme in this thread is many who talk the talk but dont walk the walk.  people see it.  people notice.  even when you think they are not looking.  and if you mess up one little thing... let the railing accusations begin. 

the light of God in us which is God Himself is what they need to see. and lets just be honest here... if you aint got that in you... are you really qualified to speak the words?  how would you know if you aint living it?  wouldnt that be a little something like the blind leading the blind? 

How good does one have to be to tell someone about salvation?  What is the criteria?  We are all hypocrites at times.  

You ask "what then do we have to offer them?"  I say we have salvation to offer them, forgiveness of sins to offer them.  When I talk to people about the gospel I tell them not to look at my life but look to Jesus life.  If non believers think that to be saved they need to be as good as you they will reject it.  They know they cannot be as good as the standard.  So if we never tell or show them about our struggles with discipleship many will turn away thinkingthey need to be good enough before they can be saved.  I have talked to many people that won't be baptized because they are trying to get good enough to please god.  They need to know there is no "good enough" to please god only can we please him by being perfect or by Jesus sacrifice.  

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1 hour ago, Jostler said:

I think I can explain an answer at least in part.  At one point He "adjusted" my understanding of Acts 1:8

I was born again under the influence of a Baptist ministry and baptist doctrine.  (Please don't hear any of this as bashing Baptists....it's not.  I praise God for the faithful witness He exposed me to there).  This verse was used to show me that "Now that you're born again, you must witness!  Shout it from the rooftops!" 

And frankly as an 8 yr old boy that TERRIFIED me.  I had little technical understanding of just what had happened to me and had NO clue how to speak to others about it.  I was almost immediately kicked into a position of feeling like I was failing Him and not obeying Him.  It affected my walk for many years.  My incomplete understanding left me vulnerable to feelings of inadequacy, condemnation and certainty I was no use to Him and He could not possibly be pleased with me.  And satan made plenty  of hay with it.

Later He exposed me to a much more complete understanding in which I realized that the indwelling Spirit and the Baptism in Him is NOT primarily a power to witness in words.  It is the power to engage a process of BECOMING something.  That "something" is a WITNESS.  Yes, when we have become a witness words will flow.  But first we must become the words.

It is our LIFE that is the witness, it is in BECOMING like Jesus that the world begins to see Jesus in OUR life.  THEN the words that will naturally proceed from that make evangelism effective.

Until our life is a reflection of His, our  words have no power and the world scoffs.  He is even now working among us and in us to rectify that "cart before the horse" circumstance we have mistakenly begun to accept as "normal" :)

When our lives and words agree...His power will be released

 

My disagreement is that this is not taught in scripture as far as I can tell.

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Just now, Vince said:

My disagreement is that this is not taught in scripture as far as I can tell.

It's in Acts 1:8.  In the Greek the grammatical emphasis is not  on "witness".  It's on "be".   A witness is what we are to become and His indwelling empowers and enables us to engage that process of transformation.   We must BE a witness.  It's a state of being from which He emanates, giving us  power filled words to speak.

I don't expect you can or should take my word for it.  Investigate the Greek or just forgo that and take it to Him and ask "What is this freak on about here?  Has what he said got a shred of Truth in it anywhere?"

:)

Then listen....and expect Him to draw you to some confirmation in the written Word.  Then believe accordingly :)

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1 hour ago, Vince said:

How good does one have to be to tell someone about salvation?  What is the criteria?  We are all hypocrites at times.  

You ask "what then do we have to offer them?"  I say we have salvation to offer them, forgiveness of sins to offer them.  When I talk to people about the gospel I tell them not to look at my life but look to Jesus life.  If non believers think that to be saved they need to be as good as you they will reject it.  They know they cannot be as good as the standard.  So if we never tell or show them about our struggles with discipleship many will turn away thinkingthey need to be good enough before they can be saved.  I have talked to many people that won't be baptized because they are trying to get good enough to please god.  They need to know there is no "good enough" to please god only can we please him by being perfect or by Jesus sacrifice.  

while there is truth to be found in your words there is a key fundamental element in this thread you are missing. 

Tit 1:16  They profess that they know God; but in works they deny him, being abominable, and disobedient, and unto every good work reprobate.

this scripture was written about judaizing christians but it lay in theory and profession only. 

2Ti 2:20  But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and of silver, but also of wood and of earth; and some to honour, and some to dishonour.
2Ti 2:21  If a man therefore purge himself from these, he shall be a vessel unto honour, sanctified, and meet for the master's use, and prepared unto every good work.

it is true none of us are good enough, and we all fall short, but when the world sees us sin they discredit us, our relationship with God, and also the words we speak.  as the above scripture says, if we aint purged.. we aint fit for The Masters use. 

Luk 11:33  No man, when he hath lighted a candle, putteth it in a secret place, neither under a bushel, but on a candlestick, that they which come in may see the light.
Luk 11:34  The light of the body is the eye: therefore when thine eye is single, thy whole body also is full of light; but when thine eye is evil, thy body also is full of darkness.
Luk 11:35  Take heed therefore that the light which is in thee be not darkness.
Luk 11:36  If thy whole body therefore be full of light, having no part dark, the whole shall be full of light, as when the bright shining of a candle doth give thee light.

you tell others to look at Jesus life... this is good... but if Jesus is living in you they should see Jesus in you.  and its this that will let them see you have something they do not.  it will make them want it... you ever been around someone who knew you was a christian and cussed and then apologized to you...  deep down they know... but their brain dont know. 

 

edit: at some point a christian must grow up.  they must begin to take responsibility and be accountable to the standard God has set for us... they must raise the bar.  they must come into a life of holiness.  much of the church today is stagnant because they wont grow up. 

Edited by Cletus
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The True Gospel, properly understood, would seldom be rejected .People usually do not reject Christianity.They reject “ religion”. The fact that Christianity has been turned into a religion by many is the tragedy that makes people reject it. They would rather take a chance on going to Hell than have to be religious.I don’t blame,them.Religion says “ do”. Christianity says “ done”.Well meaning but poorly taught Believers tell potential converts that they must “ repent of their sins” to be saved.That is nowhere to be found in the KJV.Repentance is mandantory for Salvation.It is a change of mind that takes you from unbelief in the finished work of Christ to the belief that it is only HE that can save you from your wretched, lost state.It is a one time event that changes you for life.Once a person is saved, there is another type of repentance which is regret and sorrow for our daily sins.People are told they have to change to be a Christian ,  start walking the straight and narrow, clean yourself up, etc. None of this is true, but the poor unsaved sinner is never told the Truth.We dont clean ourselves up and then invite the Holy Spirit in.We invite the Holy Spirit in and let HIM do the cleaning. He started the work and God will “ finish the work that HE started”. If we let Him.That takes faith.That is what He is looking for.That is what people need to hear.FAITH PLUS NOTHING.Simply come to Jesus with a contrite heart,thank God for His Grace and let Him save you and change you from the inside out— an act only God can perform.

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