Bella Vista Church of Christ

LIFELINES

03/11/2020

Randall Caselman

 

Two-Thirds of God is Go

 

Go make disciples of all nations, baptizing them

in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,

teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.”

(Matthew 28.19-20 ESV

 

“Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation.

Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved…”

(Mark 16.15-16) ESV

 

  Even the casual Bible Student senses the point that God wants us to go. The Bible is filled with movement: Abraham is called to go to Canaan. Jacob and his family go to Egypt. Israel crosses the Red Sea, led through the Sinai wilderness, across the Jordan into the Promise Land. Jesus goes from Palestine to Egypt and back to Nazareth. His disciples were told: “You will be My witness in Jerusalem, in Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” “All except the apostles were scattered through Judea and Samaria… Those who had been scattered preached the word wherever they went.” Philip, Peter, Paul and company go into the world to the extent that Colossians 3.6 & 23 tell us because of the phenomenal growth of Christianity, "the Gospel was bearing fruit all over the world." 

 

Evangelism means that we must be a people willing

to go preach the word,

GO live the word,

GO walk in the light of truth.

 

  We must point to Jesus. Be like John the Baptist, prepare the way: “Behold the lamb of God.” John was more interested in Jesus’ ministry than in his own career: “I must decrease and He must increase.” John lost disciples; they left him in order to follow Jesus. Sometimes this becomes a major stumbling block in our soul winning efforts; enhancing our ministry for our own ego. Scripture teaches that we must be willing to lose ourselves in service to our Lord: Willing to leave fathers and mothers, lands and houses, all for the sake of souls. “If anyone would come after Me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow Me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for Me will save it. What good is it for a man to gain the whole world, and yet lose or forfeit his very self? If anyone is ashamed of Me and My words, the Son of Man will be ashamed of him when He comes in His glory and in the glory of the Father and of the holy angels” (Luke 9.23-26).

 

  We must be transparent. Evangelism is our getting out of the way, so others can see Jesus in us. Paul became transparent. When one looked at Paul, he saw Jesus: “I no longer live, but Christ lives in me.” Jesus said: “If I be lifted up, I will draw all men to me.” Our challenge is to lift up Jesus. Transparency saves souls. Let Him be seen in us. Indeed, evangelism is not so much doctrine as it is a person... Jesus! Hear Him. Listen to him. Obey Him.

 

  Work toward creating curiosity. This soul winning tip comes from the master. A man came asking: “Rabbi, where do you live?” Jesus answered, “Come see.” Later Andrew becomes a disciple, but it all began in curiosity. Paul told those of the Areopagus that God has placed within us a mechanism that causes us to search, to look for, and reach out to God. People are searching! We’ve all been in churches where we were afraid to invite others because of what they would see and hear. This must never be the case. Invite others to come and see. Come see our love, our fellowship, our search for truth, our friendliness, our joy in salvation. Come see Jesus being demonstrated in the lives of His people. Come see Jesus!!

 

  Become a real friend. Friendship evangelism works! Most of us came to know Jesus because someone cared enough, loved enough, to invite us, bring us, teach us, show us Jesus. Jesus called His first disciples from among friends and kin. Andrew brought his brother. The lady at Jacob’s well went to her friends and town folk saying, “Come see the Christ.” We too must offer our children, our spouse, kinfolk, neighbor, fellow worker, yes, even our enemies, Jesus. Most of our neighbors will be honored to see the Christ of the Bible.

 

  Two-thirds of God is GO. “For God so loved the world that He gave His One and Only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life” (John 3.16). Now He desires that we forget self and GO into all of our world with the message; become a part of genuine New Testament soul winning... Amen?

 

—Randall Caselman