If a flood or fire or famine hits, very few rest until they have done all they can. We are easily moved to help in a time of crisis.
What is this crisis Tozer speaks of? Without Christ, those who die perish without hope.
Tozer writes: The multitudes that were so dear to Christ shall not be less dear to me. If I cannot prevent their moral suicide, I shall at least baptize them with my human tears. If in spite of all I can do they will bring upon themselves the displeasure of a holy God, then I must not let them go their sad way unwept.” Do we recognize the grave crisis that silently but surely plagues human kind? Are we moved with compassion to reach out to that need and be the light in the darkness to those who perish? The compassion for those without hope can move one to tears if we do understand the crisis they face without Jesus. Perhaps we don’t think the crisis is real, or imminent. Yet, Jesus recognized the laborers are few. Will you be an answer to His prayer for laborers? Maybe the place to start is praying for God to give you a broken heart for the unsaved you interact with. But, as noted by writer AW Tozer…here is the problem facing the church today:
It is remarked that for every saving work of God to occur among men two things must be present: God’s work bringing together several converging lines of providential circumstances AND a person…his ambassador.
If motivated by this command, why do some “witnessing” programs still fail to reach the lost? Most don’t read the next statement by Jesus that told the disciples to do it when they had POWER FROM ON HIGH…in other words, they needed more:
Too much of our Christian testimony is ineffective and too much of our witness in unconvincing because we lack power from on high. We need to be transformed by Christ before we become his ambassadors. This poor witness is often guilty of producing weak faith christians. These are neither committed to serve Him nor willing to sacrifice for Him.
Being disciplined is a hard task. All are called. Few will respond. Illustration: BUDS Navy Seal training – 80% will drop out because it is too hard or they cannot endure the training anymore. Discipleship and the sacrifices called for and the commitment required often are too hard for the weak Christian and they settle for the substitute provided by Satan that robs our joy and our power.
Illustration: BUDS Navy Seal training – 80% will drop out because it is too hard or they cannot endure the training anymore. Discipleship and the sacrifices called for and the commitment required often are too hard for the weak Christian and they settle for the substitute provided by Satan that robs our joy and our power.
If you are convinced you want to be effective in harvesting…
Illustration New Life Covenant Church. A church of 5000 impacting a city. Didn’t start with 5000…lucky to get 80. Their community: poor, crime, prostitution. Hopefest: A ministry Attracted 15000 people…gave out 6000 backpacks, 18000 pounds of groceries, 1500 haircuts, medical and dental services, and much more. Held in Humbolt park that just 20 years ago you would not walk through due to gang violence but now you play tennis at 10:30pm because of the effect of the ministry of this church. How did it all start? Pastor rented dumpsters and went to 8 blocks and said this is for you to put your trash in. The church will take care of it. It grew from there…serving with the intent to share the love of God. Prostitutes taken to a secluded place south for 1 year of discipleship then returned to manage a business that the church purchased…businesses like liquor stores that they prayed for to go out of business, the church bought the building, and started a business. Ministries that adopt a block..buying food for that block. Ministries that adopt a school and paint it Why? Everyone I asked said because what Jesus did for them, they wanted to serve Him and tell others about God’s love. Victor, a former drug dealer, now an on fire passionate follower of Jesus Christ. Three children on fire..one son went to LA and started a ministry adopting 115 street blocks. His wife a volunteer at Hopefest with crowd control. Victor and his kids coming to Albany to help us with Willamette Celebration. Everyone asked had the same reason, love for God. And the same joy on their face as they served their community. The impact of this church is so vast that the president sent a rep to visit. The governor and mayor were there. And as they have been faithful, God continues to bless them with more opportunities. The city closed a school and donated the building to the church. Thursday the church opened up a chrisitan school with 120 students. They are impacting their world.
2 Corinthians 13 The Temple at Corinth Headline: Wildfire Chases 1000's from Homes
AW Tozer: “Times might now seem like a crisis but truly an extraordinary crisis stalks our streets…
… Christian’s alone are in a position to rescue the perishing.”
“ The harvest is PLENTIOUS but the LABORERS are few” Matthew 9:
Psalm 126:5-6 “ They that sow in tears reap in joy. He that goes forth weeping, bearing precious see, shall doubtless come again rejoicing..”
2. Christians today are too at EASE while the world BURNS . They are too consumed with SELF INTERESTS . (AW Tozer)
<ul><li>Mark 16:15 </li></ul><ul><li>Go to all the world and preach the gospel to every creature… </li></ul>
<ul><li>3. Christians need more DISCIPLESHIP training rather than WITNESSING training. </li></ul>
<ul><li>4. What does DISCIPLESHIP training look like? </li></ul>
<ul><li>5. Effective “harvesting” comes from a PASSION (Phil 3:7-8) and character DISIPLINED to reflect the FRUIT of the SPIRIT (Gal 5:22-23) </li></ul>
<ul><li>Philippians 3:7-8 7 But what things were gain to me, these I have counted loss for Christ. Yet indeed I also count all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them as rubbish, that I may gain Christ </li></ul>
<ul><li>Galatians 5:22-23 22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control. </li></ul>