And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. Mark 16:15
The above text is a command not a suggestion. Jesus commands his disciples to go to the whole world to preach the gospel to every creature. He also assures them that they will receive assistance from above in order to execute their mission.
Acts 1:8 “But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.”
The command of the Lord is Go and preach not “go and invite to church.” Christians today are more interested in inviting people to their churches instead of preaching to the people where they meet them. I do not blame them though, if I will have to blame someone, the blame is on me for not teaching and making believers aware of the importance of witnessing about Christ. The blame is on the church leaders for not following the biblical way of evangelism and discipleship. Evangelism today has become a Yearly or Quarterly activity. A date is set where the church will evangelize. What is called daily or weekly evangelism is not evangelism at all. Inviting a person to church is not evangelism but it is just an invitation, it is no different from trying to drag a horse into the garage, hoping it will become a car. There is a vivid line between evangelizing and inviting
I am not against inviting people to church because some people have come to know Christ and have become true believers who are rooted in the word of God through being invited to church, however, I find it to be time consuming. We need to train more evangelist to speak the right message to unbelievers.
Imagine the following scenario:
Tuesday morning, Tom invites James to his church’s Sunday meeting, James agrees. Saturday night James goes to a night club, drinks a few beers, gets drunk and starts a fight. In the process, he gets stabbed and dies.
James was going to meet Tom on Sunday morning but they both did not know that James would die on Saturday night and go to hell. If Tom was given the right training on evangelism, James could have been saved and possibly avoided the night club.
NOT EVERYONE IS AN EVANGELIST
Many Christians believe that a pastor or an evangelists who travels and preach in revival tents is the right person to evangelize. You’ll hear some people say “we are not gifted the same way, not everyone is an evangelists” I don’t blame them but I blame myself, yes, I take the blame. We all can share with other people an experience we had at the cinema, restaurant, with a product we used and worked for us, but that does not make us sales personnel yet people buy the product because we recommended it and that we also bear the testimony of that it works. The same applies with evangelism, we are not all evangelist but we all bear the testimony within us of what Jesus Christ has done in our lives. We are not all qualified counselors but that does not stop us from offering an advice to people who needs it. We are not all journalists but that does not keep us from finding out a story and share it with others, so why is it that not being an evangelist seems to keep people from sharing with world their experience with Jesus Christ?
The scripture tells us that “He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself: he that believeth not God hath made him a liar; because he believeth not the record that God gave of his Son. And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life. These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God” 1 John 5:10-13. What has been revealed in the scripture passage above is more reasons for us to get excited and share the gospel with as many individuals as we can. This should give us words to share the gospel and lead people to Christ without the presence of the pastor or evangelist. He that has the Son (Jesus Christ) has witness within him and the witness or the record that God bears is that he gave us eternal life and that life is in His Son Jesus Christ. Why would you keep a person waiting to hear about Jesus from the “man of God” on Sunday, while you the “child of God” can tell them about Jesus who lives in you.
THE MESSAGE OF THE GOSPEL
Today’s gospel is far too different from the one I received when I got saved in 1998. The gospel I hear in this age, is about making friends with everyone you meet, getting together for a social gathering called church, where a preacher is going to tell you about “a great plan that God has for your life” then say a few Amens then off to the usual life that has nothing to do with God. The gospel I received was the one that showed me my sinful condition, a wicked young man who was fast approaching the gates of hell. It showed me how I was undeserving of salvation and that God’s love and grace was shown towards me through the death of his own Son. It showed me that not with my doing but by God’s doing I am now justified, being a wicked man, yet God justified me by faith in His Son. The massage of the gospel is simple and should be presented as simple as it is, A man is a sinner worthy of hell and God is the judge and will condemn men to hell due to their sins but Jesus Christ is the Savior and we are saved through faith in Him. We now get to have peace with God through the finished work of Jesus Christ.
The message of the gospel have only one plot and that is eternal life. If anyone comes to God for anything but eternal life the same person is doomed. I have personally seen scores of young people who come to church having been invited by their friends and they end up participating in various ministries in the church without being saved. The only thing that keeps them at the church is not the word of God but it’s the activities that takes place at church, such as, music, social outings and events and etc. If you have to dig deeper you will discover that they care not about God. They don’t know what really Jesus did for them and they don’t know how they should conduct themselves as Christians. According to various sources, about 53 percent of the youth that claims to be Christian, does not believe that Jesus died for them. This figure is shocking considering how many young people who sincerely think they are going to heaven yet they are going to hell. It is pointless to go out and invite people and fill 10 000 seats at church if they will neutralize 10 true believers. The message must not be changed, anyone who wants to follow Jesus Christ must deny him/herself, take up his or her cross daily and follow Him (Luke 9:23) If people are no willing to lose anything for the sake of Christ, then the same are not worthy of Him. We cannot change the gospel to accommodate unbelievers, if that can be done then it is no longer the gospel of Jesus Christ and the Jesus who is presented by this modified gospel is another Jesus and people who spread such a gospel must be cursed (Galatians 1:8,9).
Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen. (Matthew 28:19-20)