Get Equipped

December 1, 2007

As Christmas approaches, is your church starting to get ready to share the gospel with people who only come to a church for Christmas and Easter? I hope so, it’s a good opportunity. Let’s try and make sure that we share a faithful presentation whenever we get the chance.

I am reminded of this as I have recently heard some real stinkers. One was emailed to me by a dear friend. The other was at a church event designed as outreach. ARG!

Know the gospel, share it faithfully. Please!

If you’re not sure what the gospel really is, please read your bible carefully and in context and then check out freeoffer.wordpress.com for some ideas on ways to share it.

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Reformed Calvinistic techno music???

November 9, 2007

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Would you ever think that a quote from John Calvin could be turned in to a song? What about Mark Driscoll talking about Idolatry worked in to a techno thumping sound track?

“No!” you say?
Well then keep reading!

Would you like to have the best parts of sermons preached by the likes of:

Mark Driscoll
John Piper
Joshua Harris
Rick Gamache

And then have the Gospel and reformed/Calvinistic theology worked in to modern smooth techno rhythms?

If so, then welcome to…

www.1031sermonjams.com

Read the rest of this entry »


Grape news for the languishing vine

October 18, 2007

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“I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. If anyone does not remain in me, he is like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be given you. This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples. GrapesGrapes

Throwing one’s self into evangelism without being a part of that life giving vine, or plugged into the power source, is futile. Let’s be encouraged to stay faithful in our personal walk with Christ – as He says “apart from me you can do nothing.” I struggle with keeping the balance, if you do too, we can remember the key to bearing fruit is “remaining in” Him.


Theology on Fire – conference notes

October 5, 2007

As faithful evangelists we want to have a good grasp on theology. Here are Nathan’s notes from the Theology on Fire conference which he attended this year. It is hoped that by reading these notes you can get inspired by what the conference was all about.

Theology on Fire
Preaching the Living Word into the 21st Century
SMBC Biennial Preaching Conference – May 7-10, 2007

“This generation is profoundly Biblically illiterate”

“Good preaching is when God is central and not us” – Jenny Salt

“The preacher must also live what he believes – people need to see how he lives and do it”

Dr. Dale Ralph Davis

Joshua: Picking up Principles

– Joshua 21:43-45 Sums up everything so far.
– Usual OT pattern: Grace then demand for obedience
– Use the OT to interpret the OT (Josh 1; 7:21, 24-26)
– Accept the stress – Get the point of what the writer is saying. What’s his point? What’s he saying? (Joshua 2)
– Doctrinal bones covered with narrative flesh (See how to preach OT narrative).
– Go slow: Josh 3-4 – The writer wants us to savour the event, like eating a delicious dessert. We need to enjoy it and remember it. God’s finest works take time.
– Keep your eye on the odd God: God is the most interesting character of the Bible. He’s amazing! God surprises us, shocks us (eg. grace: salvation of von Ribbentroff, Hitler’s foreign minister “I’ll see you in heaven”). God does “insane” things to prove a point – that it’s his doing, that he does what we don’t do, that he does the impossible.
– Josh 5:11-12 God provides – be thankful even in the ordinary everyday things
– Josh 9:18-21 God’s people are sometimes called to live obediently and submissively amongst their own folly. Eg. don’t divorce even if your marriage was a mistake – stay obedient even amongst your own folly. Read the rest of this entry »


The Sixth Step – TALK

October 2, 2007

Welcome back to the six steps review. This week we looked at the final step, which is TALK. Surprising, huh, since the series is called “Six Steps to Talking About Jesus”(Matthias Media).

This week’s references were: 1 Peter 3:15 and Colossians 4:2-6. Awesome verses about evangelism. The thrust here is to pray for God to work in opening doors, and then to be able to clearly give a gospel message in an appropriate way, as well as equipping yourself to answer questions and objections. Our heart attitude is also touched on, we need to be gracious and loving, bringing “salt” to the conversation. I thought it was great that we were reminded that a good gospel presentation is all about Jesus and the listener, and where they stand with our holy God, and not about the presenter.

This study gave us opportunity to consider ways to present the gospel, e.g. tracts, personal testimonies, and ways to turn conversations, although we only touched briefly on this aspect.

I loved this study series. I highly recommend it to you if you’re looking for a new perspective on personal evangelism that is scripturally sound.


Six Steps Update: Step 5 – INVITE

September 25, 2007

Today’s step was INVITE. You’ll never guess what it was all about.

Phillippians 2:1-11 was the text today, and focused on how our attitude should be humble and Christ-like when we are reaching out to our community. Look, to be super honest I had a migraine and didn’t really take much in today, but from what I vaguely remember it was scripturally sound. It was good to be reminded that just because someone refuses one invitation doesn’t mean that they will refuse all invitations, so keep pestering them until they tell you to stop.
It concerned me a bit that this step seemed to take us away from talking about Jesus and more into the realm of inviting people to events so that someone else can talk to them about Jesus. Which disappoints me, but maybe I missed something. Like I said, I was only half there. I think it would be really useful to keep a course like this focussed on teaching pepole to talk about Jesus clearly and accurately instead of letting people stay in the zone of thinking evangelism is inviting people to hear message. It can be that, sure, but it is probably more effective when people reach out in love to share the good news at a grass roots level.


The Holy Spirit convicting the world of guilt

September 9, 2007

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A light bulb flashed on for me during tonight’s sermon.

Previously I have felt a bit ashamed to speak too much about sin and guilt when presenting the gospel.  I have tended to want to major on “the positives” e.g.  adoption into God’s family, new life and eternal life.

Tonight’s sermon by Pastor John de Boer was titled “The Holy Spirit – Our Roommate”.
One of the points brought out was that the work of the Spirit is like a spotlight directed at Christ. One of the bible texts used was John 16: 8 – 11.

Unless I go away, the Counsellor (Holy Spirit) will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you. When he comes, he will convict the world of guilt in regard to sin and righteousness and judgment: 9in regard to sin, because men do not believe in me; in regard to righteousness, because I am going to the Father, where you can see me no longer; and in regard to judgment, because the prince of this world now stands condemned.

As I read “when He comes, He will convict the world of guilt in regard to sin and righteousness and judgement…”  it occurred to me that I have not seen the significance of exposing sin for what it is, or as I should have been seeing it.

There is a great temptation to play down the harsh offence of the cross, and make it more appealing.
This text shows that people can’t see their need for Christ till they are convicted of guilt.