Friday, April 27, 2012
The Importance of the Gospel
“For since, in the wisdom of God, the world through wisdom did not know God, it pleased God through the foolishness of the message preached to save those who believe.” - 1 Corinthians 1:21
John Peton was a missionary to the New Hebrides Islands in the South Pacific in the mid 1800’s. Peton desperately desired to preach the Gospel even though the natives were cannibals. Shortly after arriving to the Islands his wife and son died. Faced with the decision to leave the Islands and work of the Gospel, Peton determined in his heart to stay and see all the natives come to know Christ. This decision came about as he slept countless nights on the graves of his family so the cannibals he was trying to reach would not dig them up and eat their bodies. Talk about a love for the Gospel of Christ and those who desperately need it! Because of Peton’s commitment and love, thousands became Christians.
Often we neglect to share the Gospel of Christ with others out of petty and even selfish reasons. Fear, lack of knowledge, misplaced priorities and even wasted time keep us from being highways the greatest news ever can travel across. The Gospel is powerful and should be displayed daily in our lives. We need to get over our fear, gain knowledge, reprioritize, and structure our time for the highest calling and best news ever. How powerful is the Gospel? It doesn’t matter if you are educated or illiterate, rich or poor, young or old. The message of the Cross and Resurrection of Christ can change anyone and must be vocalized and displayed in our daily lives.
Some might say they are waiting on the right opportunity or a “divine appointment”. Let me tell you how to recognize a divine appointment – it is the next person you come in contact with! People need to hear your personal testimony and eye-witness account of how Jesus has saved you. What else in life is more important than telling others about Christ? Paul said, “For I determined not to know anything among you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified" (1 Corinthians 2:2). The message of the Gospel is not Christianity or religiosity – it is Jesus Christ and His power over sin and death. People don’t need religion, they need relationship.
This week, one of our employees led a truck driver to the Lord while he made a delivery to our church. He didn’t just pray for his obvious hurts. He didn’t tell him to just listen to Christian music or read His Bible. He led him to the Gospel and shared his personal experience and relationship with Christ. I led a man to the Lord this week and told Him about a new beginning in Christ. I told him how he could be “reborn” (John 3) and become a new creation (2 Corinthians 5:17).
If we love our family and neighbors then why do we withhold the words of life from them? If today is the day of salvation, what if tomorrow never comes for those without Christ? If we are fishers of men, then why are we just making fishing tackle and pointing the way to the bank? We should cast out our nets until they are filled! If Jesus sought the lost and Paul was in agony over the unsaved, shouldn’t we be as well? As Christians we must give an honest, sincere, prayerful effort to win others to Christ. The Gospel is important to you, shouldn’t it be to others?