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Author Topic: Don't Give Me Jesus  (Read 3123 times)
Gracey
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« on: May 06, 2004, 08:40:15 AM »

Don't Give Me Jesus …
… if giving me Jesus means
telling me about your beliefs,
then walking away.
  Don't give me Jesus,
if giving me Jesus means
judging me by appearance,
but never trying to see who I really am.
  Don't give me Jesus,
if giving me Jesus means
you're right no matter what,
and I'm wrong no matter what.

Do Give Me Jesus …
… if giving me Jesus means
walking beside me just like
Jesus walked beside
lepers and losers.
  Do give me Jesus,
if giving me Jesus means
listening more than talking.
  Do give me Jesus,
if giving me Jesus means
laughing with me when I need to laugh,
and crying with me when I need to cry.
  Do give me Jesus,
if giving me Jesus means
letting me know when
my actions are harmful or destructive.
  Do give me Jesus,
if giving me Jesus means
being my friend.

If you give me Jesus
wrapped in your friendship,
I may be more ready to listen
to what you have to say.

—Anonymous
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« Reply #1 on: May 18, 2004, 04:58:22 AM »

Don't Give Me Jesus …
… if giving me Jesus means
telling me about your beliefs,
then walking away.
  Don't give me Jesus,
if giving me Jesus means
judging me by appearance,
but never trying to see who I really am.
  Don't give me Jesus,
if giving me Jesus means
you're right no matter what,
and I'm wrong no matter what.

Do Give Me Jesus …
… if giving me Jesus means
walking beside me just like
Jesus walked beside
lepers and losers.
  Do give me Jesus,
if giving me Jesus means
listening more than talking.
  Do give me Jesus,
if giving me Jesus means
laughing with me when I need to laugh,
and crying with me when I need to cry.
  Do give me Jesus,
if giving me Jesus means
letting me know when
my actions are harmful or destructive.
  Do give me Jesus,
if giving me Jesus means
being my friend.

If you give me Jesus
wrapped in your friendship,
I may be more ready to listen
to what you have to say.

—Anonymous


Good One


Brother Love Smiley

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C C
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« Reply #2 on: May 20, 2004, 04:13:48 PM »

 Wink  I agree!
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Doing unto others as you would have them do unto you would include not finding your neighbor's biggest fault and then harping on it as if it were your mission.
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« Reply #3 on: May 20, 2004, 04:22:45 PM »

same here.

His Messenger
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For when we were yet without strength, in due time CHRIST DIED FOR THE UNGODLY"
(Romans 5:6).

"And you, being dead in your sins... hath He quickened together with him, HAVING FORGIVEN YOU ALL TRESPASSES"
(Colossians 2:13).

Will you spend eternity with God?
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« Reply #4 on: May 28, 2004, 01:24:12 AM »

Hey, that was great...thank you for sharing that with us!
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« Reply #5 on: August 30, 2004, 04:17:41 PM »

Don't Give Me Jesus …
… if giving me Jesus means
telling me about your beliefs,
then walking away.
  Don't give me Jesus,
if giving me Jesus means
judging me by appearance,
but never trying to see who I really am.
  Don't give me Jesus,
if giving me Jesus means
you're right no matter what,
and I'm wrong no matter what.

Do Give Me Jesus …
… if giving me Jesus means
walking beside me just like
Jesus walked beside
lepers and losers.
  Do give me Jesus,
if giving me Jesus means
listening more than talking.
  Do give me Jesus,
if giving me Jesus means
laughing with me when I need to laugh,
and crying with me when I need to cry.
  Do give me Jesus,
if giving me Jesus means
letting me know when
my actions are harmful or destructive.
  Do give me Jesus,
if giving me Jesus means
being my friend.

If you give me Jesus
wrapped in your friendship,
I may be more ready to listen
to what you have to say.

—Anonymous


Gracey,

What is your take on this poem?  

I'm sure you agree with it being that you posted it.  

I want to give you my honest opinion in brotherly love..not to alienate myself but because it is the conviction of my heart.

I think that this poem encompasses much of what is wrong with the modern evangelism in the church today.  Let's not give people Jesus unless....  Unless we accept their views mixed in w/ ours?  Unless we are best friends first?  Unless  we can keep from offending them?  And my personal favorite,,, until they ask us to tell them about Jesus....

Do you think that this poem is condemning certain types of witnessing?  Is it telling me that I have to make friends w/ someone in order to witness to them and that witnessing to strangers is wrong?  Is that what it means to "talk to people about my beliefs (Jesus Christ and his infallible gospel) and walk away".  I talk to people about Jesus all the time and then walk away.  That's what seed planting is.  Does this poem condemn that practice?  Jesus said to go into all the earth.  I don't have time to make friends with "all the earth".  I am here to plant as much seed as I can until the day that God calls me home.  Is what I am doing wrong according to this poem?

As for the part regarding being right and being wrong when I give you Jesus?  When could I be wrong when giving someone Jesus?  Giving someone Jesus is always right.  I can certainly be wrong when stating my own opinion that is for sure.  However, when I give them Jesus, I stand on the absolute truth of the Word of God.... not my opinion.  In those instances I am right no matter what.  If they don't want it or don't agree with what the Bible says then they are wrong 100% of the time.  I will tell them the dangers and concequences of their opinion with a Holy urgencey.  

It is not my desire to slam you or this poem.  I have never met you and can only assume that you are a mighty warrior of Christ yourself.  I thank God for your love for people and hope that you will win many souls to Christ in your life.  I just do not agree  with the "friendship evangelism" approach to witnessing as the exclusive way to win souls.  I do not believe that it was the model or instructions that Jesus left for us to follow.  Jesus had only a handful of friends.  He loved all men and women (and instructed us to do the same) but only befreinded a few.  

We would have to say the Samaritan woman at the well in John 4 was a "stranger" to Jesus.  He didn't wait to establish a meaningful relationship with her in order to be able to speak into her life.  He simply struck up a conversation w/ her and then spoke the truth in love to a woman who didn't even know who he was....and he was effective.  The greatest sermon ever preached in Matthew 5 was spoken to the multitudes in the open air.  Not to a bunch of Jesus' closest friends or to those hanging around the Temple. I know that your heart is pure before God.  I certainly do not question that.  I just do not accept this poem as the most effective way to reach the lost for Christ.

I'll leave you with this illustration as we approach the 3rd anniversary of the attacks on NYC and Wash DC.  

Suppose it is Sep. 10 2001 and you are in NYC about to deliver a message to 1000 people working in Tower 2 of the World Trade Center.  Your message,,,, The Gospel of Jesus Christ.  You are fully aware of the attacks that are about to take place the following day and you have one chance to deliver the message to these souls about to step into eternity.  How would you approach your message?  
would you mention death, judgement, heaven and hell, concequences of sin, repentance, salvation through Jesus Christ?  Even if meant offending them or "appearing" narrow-minded and judgemental?  I certainly hope so.

I know that your heart is pure before God.  I certainly do not question that.  I just do not accept this poem as the Biblical model of how to reach the lost for Christ.  May God go with you today Gracey.  I love you enough to be completely honest.  I cannot convey that on a forum such as this as effectively as I would in person, but I simply had to be honest.

Until the Nets are Full.

Neil
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« Reply #6 on: September 03, 2004, 06:20:41 AM »

 I just do not agree  with the "friendship evangelism" approach to witnessing as the exclusive way to win souls.  I do not believe that it was the model or instructions that Jesus left for us to follow.  Jesus had only a handful of friends.  He loved all men and women (and instructed us to do the same) but only befreinded a few.  

Mar 2:15  And it came to pass, that, as Jesus sat at meat in his house, many publicans and sinners sat also together with Jesus and his disciples: for there were many, and they followed him.
Mar 2:16  And when the scribes and Pharisees saw him eat with publicans and sinners, they said unto his disciples, How is it that he eateth and drinketh with publicans and sinners?
Mar 2:17  When Jesus heard it, he saith unto them, They that are whole have no need of the physician, but they that are sick: I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.

I dont see where the poem is condemning seed planting, on the contrary, I read it as saying PLANT with LOVE
"you have one chance to deliver the message to these souls about to step into eternity.  How would you approach your message?"  
Good question. The Word says with genuine love and compassion, as the poem indicates.

Did you get  tangled up in your net streetpreacher?  Wink
kidding!  Grin
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« Reply #7 on: September 08, 2004, 08:55:52 AM »

Quote
Gracey,

What is your take on this poem?  

I'm sure you agree with it being that you posted it.  

Hello, Neil (street preacher).

I do agree with it, actually. I have learned from experience that people will listen and not close you off if you approach them with love....if you show them Christ by example, rather than by mouth....it's easy to talk the love of Christ, but Christ didn't just teach by talking....he set the example that I must live up to.

To me this poem doesn't say that I accept all those things I disagree with; or that I pat the secular world on the back and say it's okay; to me it means that I can accept the person with love, because Christ loved me first (sin and all) and then go from there.

How can you ever plant the seed if you don't get your hands dirty, and get on your knees?

The poem maybe has an overly simplistic way of saying it. But most of the people I have shared with become willing to hear the "curses" if they've first heard the "promises". Maybe that's not the way everywhere, and I think we must approach each individual in whatever way their nature will permit. If Christ did it, so can I.

Quote
I think that this poem encompasses much of what is wrong with the modern evangelism in the church today.  Let's not give people Jesus unless....  Unless we accept their views mixed in w/ ours?  Unless we are best friends first?  Unless  we can keep from offending them?  And my personal favorite,,, until they ask us to tell them about Jesus....

I don't believe this poem is about making friends first....It's about attitude; it's about approaching your already friends and family; it's about approaching strangers as you would approach a friend.

Quote
Do you think that this poem is condemning certain types of witnessing?  Is it telling me that I have to make friends w/ someone in order to witness to them and that witnessing to strangers is wrong?  Is that what it means to "talk to people about my beliefs (Jesus Christ and his infallible gospel) and walk away".  I talk to people about Jesus all the time and then walk away.  That's what seed planting is.  Does this poem condemn that practice?

I know what seed planting is....I do it all the time, not by preaching at people, but by helping people and speaking with them and getting "in" there....not standing on a soapboax (I'm not saying that you do, please don't get me wrong). I have seen so many people who "preach the bible", but don't preach the Word.

People who have little or nothing in life, people who have no hope, people who have no family or friends....they need more than that. They need a loving hand to touch them; a sandwich and cofee; a new coat or shoes; or just a hug, along with telling them of Jesus - in other words, they need to see "Jesus in action".

I don't believe this poem is condemning street preaching. But if the only thing you ever do is preach Jesus and then walk away without offering anything else, what does that say to these people about the love of Christ?

Quote
I am here to plant as much seed as I can until the day that God calls me home.  Is what I am doing wrong according to this poem?

I don't see the poem as saying that is wrong at all. I guess I just see the poem as a way of reminding us that it's one thing to preach, and another to teach.

Quote
As for the part regarding being right and being wrong when I give you Jesus?  When could I be wrong when giving someone Jesus?  Giving someone Jesus is always right.

I don't believe the poem says that at all. I believe it's talking about personal opinion....certainly you've met people who think they are right no matter what the situation. I believe this part speaks to our being humble, instead of hauty.

As for giving someone Jesus being always right....I would have to agree, although there are those out there who preach a very twisted view of the word.

Quote
I will tell them the dangers and concequences of their opinion with a Holy urgencey.

In my experience "fire and brimstone" scares people and seldom wins a willing soul.

Quote
I just do not agree  with the "friendship evangelism" approach to witnessing as the exclusive way to win souls.

I don't believe it's the exclusive way either, and I don't consider it to be "friendship" evangelism, but "love" evangelism, which, from the way I see it, is what Jesus taught us through His loving sacrifice.

Quote
We would have to say the Samaritan woman at the well in John 4 was a "stranger" to Jesus.  He didn't wait to establish a meaningful relationship with her in order to be able to speak into her life.  He simply struck up a conversation w/ her and then spoke the truth in love to a woman who didn't even know who he was....and he was effective.  The greatest sermon ever preached in Matthew 5 was spoken to the multitudes in the open air.  Not to a bunch of Jesus' closest friends or to those hanging around the Temple.

I agree with all of this of course. I never said the poem was the most effective way for everyone; on the other hand, not everyone can witness in the same way. God has made ways for all of us.

Quote
Suppose it is Sep. 10 2001 and you are in NYC about to deliver a message to 1000 people working in Tower 2 of the World Trade Center.  Your message,,,, The Gospel of Jesus Christ.  You are fully aware of the attacks that are about to take place the following day and you have one chance to deliver the message to these souls about to step into eternity.  How would you approach your message?  
would you mention death, judgement, heaven and hell, concequences of sin, repentance, salvation through Jesus Christ?  Even if meant offending them or "appearing" narrow-minded and judgemental?  I certainly hope so.

It isn't about how we appear; it's about love. I suppose to some it might not matter (not saying this is you...not at all) why a person accepts Christ as their saviour, but the most effective warriors for Christ are definitely those who accept his sacrifice out of thanksgiving for what He did, not those who are scared they will go to hell when they die. I've known many people who accepted Christ out of that fear, and although they might be "saved" from the lake of fire, they are not living a Christian life, nor are they effectively witnessing to anyone. I guess if you only want to count the souls you win, then it doesn't matter (again...I'm not saying this is you...you is such a broad term...I just mean people in general). Helping to change a person's eternity is good (no more lake of fire, instead, blessed heaven). I have always felt the need (desire?) to do more than that though; to show them how they can live their life for Christ's purposes, and not our own. It's more than winning souls....but it does start with seed planting.

Some plant seeds, some water, some weed, etc. Does that mean the concept in this poem is wrong? In your post you said that "friendship evangelism is what is wrong with evangelism" (or something to that effect, sorry I'm doing this from the edit mode and can't look back at it). That's making a judgement on how someone else fits into God's plan. I think we all have a part to play and God equips us to do our part.

From my point of view, though, I don't ever win any souls to Christ....He does that himself. I just show them what Christ is all about.

Quote
I just do not accept this poem as the Biblical model of how to reach the lost for Christ.

Well, no one said you have to, but not everybody can witness in the same way. It is but one way that people can reach the lost and shine the light of Jesus on them. We are a varied and diverse people and I believe God uses us and gifts us in whatever way we will be most effective for His purposes. We are not all "preachers"....nor teachers....nor prophets.... I could quote the verse if I need to, but I suspect you already know it.  Smiley

Quote
I know that your heart is pure before God.  I certainly do not question that.I love you enough to be completely honest.

Likewise.

In all honesty, I didn't see that anyone would take that poem in the way that you had. Although the writer was anonymous, it was written by a teenager who had hoped to help other teens reach out and I felt it was very effective.

I appreciate your honesty and your opinions. Thank you.

In Christ
Gracey
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« Reply #8 on: September 13, 2004, 07:05:14 AM »

How can you ever plant the seed if you don't get your hands dirty, and get on your knees?

  now there`s a thought! Cheesy
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« Reply #9 on: September 15, 2004, 10:26:43 AM »

When I saw the title of this post i was like oh???
But when I read the words I was so touched.

This is how I intrepreted the poem. (not to say anyone is wrong)
Every day we all witness... but
how do people see us.  
Perhaps I ran into you at the mall.. I handed you a tract and planted that seed.  3 week later you run into us on the street and ask us for a dollar..  What if our reaction is get lost bum!
Or would we say: "Come  with me..theres a coffee shop right around the corner."

In my Christain walk I have been hurt many times by other Christains. What it spoke to me is.. its more then what we say for Christ, its what we do..and what we dont do.

Lovely words!  Please know I am not lashing out against anyone..just sharing my view.
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« Reply #10 on: September 21, 2004, 04:55:46 PM »

Hello Gracey,

Thanks for the care and thoughtfullness of your post.  It is impossible to disagree on these message boards without coming across as a "know it all".  I know that is the way that I can come off at times but I promise you that it is not my intention at all to do so.  I do believe that you and I are on the same side of this fight.  

You would be a person that I wish I had the opportunity to speak with in another forum besides over a computer.  It is impossible of course to do so but I think we could have an interesting conversation on this topic.  I will certainly take what you have said in love and Christian fellowship.  I hope that you will accept my apologies if I come across too bluntly in expressing my opinions.  If you will allow me a second chance to explain where I am coming from however, I would appreciate it a great deal.

I am opposed to much of what is the modern American church calls "evangelism".  We have adopted many new means and methods of evangelizing the world which I am NOT opposed to.  I believe in using the resources, abilities  and giftings that God has given us to reach every single person on the planet with the full Gospel of Jesus Christ.  One that preaches the complete message without omitting any part of it.  Hell, blood, cross, sin, repentance, need to be preached along with love, grace, Heaven, and benefits when sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  John Wesley, who was probably one of the most effective evangelists in history, said we should preach 90% law and 10% grace.   That would seem foolish to most people in American churches today.  So has the truth changed since Wesley's day?

Of course not, the problem is that we have adopted a humanist view of how to "relevantly" share the gospel with those who are parrishing.  When these methods and models dilute or lighten the message of the Gospel, I am very much opposed to them.  The Gospel does not need us, we need the Gospel.  We have come to believe that the Gospel needs us to make it effective in the American church of 2004.  A skit or a comic show maybe or the right lighting or cord played on the electric guitar and a $20 million recreation facility will somehow make the gospel effective.  Those are all wonderful things that God can bless when the preaching is still Biblical and solid.  However, when the message changes to lighten the sting of conviction, we have wasted everyone's time (not to mention $20 million). Period.  

I know that some of you have already tuned me out because I probably seem crazy (I am...for Jesus)  or have somehow offended your view of what Church should be.  Again, it is not my intention to offend but to merely speak the truth in love.  So for the sake of those still with me however....

Let me throw a number at you.  In the early 1990's a major U.S. denomination reported 294,000 "decisions" for Christ in one year.  Pretty impressive on the surface of it I must say.  However, 2 years later the denomination could only find 14,000 of those still in fellowship.  The denomination had created 280,000 (or 95%) of what we commonly refer to as backsliders.  These results are common throughout the entire church in America where 9 out of every 10 decisions for Christ result in people falling away from the faith.  We are doing something wrong!  We are losing 90% of the people who come to the alter to say the "Sinner's prayer".   We now make friendship and our felt needs priority over delivering God's word with compassion for those who are destined for hell if they die today.  

Jesus understands how important relationships are to us.  He also expects that our relationship w/ him will trump any relationship that is of this earth.

In Matthew 10 34-38 Jesus says "Think not that I came to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. 35. For I came to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and a daughter in law against her mother in law 36 And a man's foes shall be those of his own household 37 He that loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me 38 And he that takes not his cross and follows after me, is not worthy of me.

We worship God through our obedience to follow his commands.  Jesus said "If you love me, follow my commands".  He commanded us to go into all the earth and preach the gospel to every creature. I do so to worship him, and out of sheer gratitude torwards him.  I am passionate about it to a fault at times.  

I am sorry for coming across as mean-spirited Gracey.  I just feel like there is so little time and so much to do to fulfill Christ's commission to us.  I want all of us to do so with a passion and zeal that conquers our fears.  I don't want any of us to let ourselves off the hook when it comes to evangelism.  Think of where they'll go if they die without Christ.  Let that motivate all of us to press into the harvest fields.  

I'll re-read that poem with a different heart.  God bless you sister!

Neil
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« Reply #11 on: September 24, 2004, 09:52:42 PM »

Dearest Neil...brother in Christ!

I did not feel you were mean-spirited at all, nor a know it all. I just think you were speaking from your heart; but I also know that God created us all different....isn't it wonderful?

And I believe much of what you do.

I believe that many of those people whom we "lose" after they have made that oh so important decision are lost simply because many of the christians who introduce them to our saviour may "speak" christian, but don't "live" or "act" christian. Once somebody is introduced isn't there (shouldn't there) be more required?

Quote
The Gospel does not need us, we need the Gospel.

I heartily agree with you on this.

Quote
I know that some of you have already tuned me out because I probably seem crazy (I am...for Jesus)  or have somehow offended your view of what Church should be.  Again, it is not my intention to offend but to merely speak the truth in love.  So for the sake of those still with me however....

Still with you, and don't think you are crazy at all.

Quote
I hope that you will accept my apologies if I come across too bluntly in expressing my opinions.  If you will allow me a second chance to explain where I am coming from however, I would appreciate it a great deal.

You don't need to apologize for having opinions, and we are all allowed more than one chance (does not Christ forgive me constantly? though I wish it were not necessary)...what kind of christian would I be if I were so mean as to deny you?

Quote
One that preaches the complete message without omitting any part of it.  Hell, blood, cross, sin, repentance, need to be preached along with love, grace, Heaven, and benefits when sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

I don't think I said we should not preach all of the gospel, only that in my experience opening with the "law" often doesn't allow people to learn of the "grace" because they tune out way before I get to it. What I've experienced is that when people have some understanding of the great gift, they come to realize how hurtful our sin is to God. There's a balance that must be made, I think, one that teaches ALL of the bible...I've never believed any different...

Quote
We have come to believe that the Gospel needs us to make it effective in the American church of 2004.  A skit or a comic show maybe or the right lighting or cord played on the electric guitar and a $20 million recreation facility will somehow make the gospel effective.  Those are all wonderful things that God can bless when the preaching is still Biblical and solid.  However, when the message changes to lighten the sting of conviction, we have wasted everyone's time (not to mention $20 million). Period.  

That sounds an awful lot like something I've heard described as "the ninth wave" church...which I am opposed to.

Where I am coming from is a small church who does not even have a building...we don't have all the bells and whistles (maybe a few bells  Smiley) but I don't think (believe) we need all that to be effective, however, I also don't believe that church is the place for constant alter calls, either. Yes, occasionally we should, but I guess I believe that church is for "believers" (the bible tells us the "believers" met together, and God added to their number daily).

It becomes frustrating to attend church where the shepherd is starving the sheep instead of feeding them in an effort to "corral" more and more sheep....what good is a town full of starving sheep?

The more effective way is to corral some sheep, fatten them up (with the word, in this this case) and send them out to corral more sheep, feed them up, and so on. Isn't that the way Christ taught?

Quote
I just feel like there is so little time and so much to do to fulfill Christ's commission to us.

Yes, I know.

But...if on the day you stand before Christ with only one soul on earth who has heard your message, what do you suppose he will say?

My guess is "Well done, thou good and faithful servant".

If on that day you stand with thousands to your name, what would he say?

"Well done, thou good and faitful servant".

Neil, you must carry on as Christ directs you, as must I...someday we shall meet at His feet. Never apologize for your love for Him, nor for your conviction.

Gracey


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