Wednesday, March 07, 2012

Evangelism - II

I think I have said this here – maybe, maybe not. I chose to follow Jesus around age 9-10. A child’s simple declaration in his heart that what God says is true and he needs to align himself with that.

There are some good things about that. There is a lot of junk that gets avoided. (Not all junk. One does not necessarily realize that something is junk, before it smacks you in the face.) If you are in the right family and the right community, there can be a tremendous grounding that can occur.

There is a story in the Bible about a very bad woman who comes to Jesus. Her actions demonstrate that she realizes she is very bad. Moreover, she does not want to be bad. She comes in love and trust, seeking Jesus’ help to get out of the life she is in. She performs a tremendous act of sacrifice to demonstrate her devotion. Jesus comments that those who perceive themselves as being far from God, once they turn and follow Jesus, have an avalanche of love and commitment, because they realize what they have been rescued from. While those who do not have that perception have smaller love and commitment. They do not see their need for rescue as clearly.

I have seen some people become amazed by those who used to swim in human muck, come to Jesus and suddenly shine like the sun. While those who come to Jesus, and have never even seen human muck, are about as bright as a 40 watt bulb. There is not much attraction, not much revelation, to Jesus. The former bottom feeders seem to give more, love more and believe more. Why don’t we encourage everyone to jump into the muck?

One, following Jesus means loving people. Love people means giving to fill needs and to promote the best. Muck does not meet needs or give room for the best. It is like putting a plant in the ground, covering it with a bucket, and expecting it to grow healthy, vibrant and fruitful.

Two, following Jesus means being holy. Holiness is God’s way of living most closely aligned with the God-given design of human beings. Going away from holiness results in a poor life and misery.

To demonstrate Jesus’ best means loving Jesus most. Love Jesus most seems to come from an awakening to God’s love for us, and the gulf Jesus overcame for us, because of his love. It produces a natural, genuine overflow of the heart. To produce the love of God in a human heart, to produce the natural outflow of the love of God from a human heart is the best evangelism. There must be another way to produce this flowing besides rolling in the muck.

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