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Our Lord Jesus Christ loves you.
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Author Topic: Witnessing to the churched but unsaved  (Read 2551 times)
Bern
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« on: December 24, 2004, 07:58:11 PM »

I know its not really our place to judge whether people are saved or not.. but we all know that there are many people who go to church because its the "right thing to do" or because they were brought up with it or whatever, but don't really get the point of it. Its more of a religion and tradition than a relationship.

I know we need to seek the Holy Spirit's guidance on this matter.. but if anyone has any advice on this it would be much appreciated. sometimes I feel that being bold and quoting scriptures is definately not the answer... its a tough one, and of course only the Spirit can do the convicting.. but I would love to be better at this. Trouble is the hear the word all the time and it seems to have lost its power to convict them.

Any ideas?
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Romans 8:28  And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.
Soldier4Christ
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« Reply #1 on: December 25, 2004, 12:23:45 AM »

Sometimes there is nothing we can do except pray and continue to preach the gospel.

Joh 12:37  But though he had done so many miracles before them, yet they believed not on him:
Joh 12:38  That the saying of Esaias the prophet might be fulfilled, which he spake, Lord, who hath believed our report? and to whom hath the arm of the Lord been revealed?
Joh 12:39  Therefore they could not believe, because that Esaias said again,
Joh 12:40  He hath blinded their eyes, and hardened their heart; that they should not see with their eyes, nor understand with their heart, and be converted, and I should heal them.

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Joh 9:4  I must work the works of him that sent me, while it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work.
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« Reply #2 on: December 25, 2004, 02:18:19 PM »


Yes, we must continue on to have faith in Him...


    Smiley
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« Reply #3 on: January 04, 2005, 05:30:05 PM »

Bern,
I certainly sympathize with you.  I find that many "evangelical Christians" are the hardest people to reach.  They truly believe they are saved and actually they are not.  D.James Kennedy said that "based on years of experience and observation the LARGE majority of church goers today are in fact not saved".  That is mind boggling. You are right in that it seems as though the Word has lost it's power to convict.

The problem lies not in the Word because  the Word of God is still mighty, powerful, and sharper than any two edged sword.  It is still able to penetrate the most hard hearted sinner even those who seem numb to Gospel.  That has not changed in 2000 years.

The problem lies with us.  Around the turn of the last century, the Church adopted a "new" approach to presenting the Gospel message.  I guess they figured that the heroes of the faith like Wesley, Whitfield, Spurgeon, Moody, and Edwards didn't really know what they were doing when they were bringing millions (of TRUE converts) into the faith.  The church decided to abandon the Law and it's capacity to convert the soul (See Psalms 19:7).  They decided that the Gospel needed man's help and they adopted a more "man centered" approach to presenting the Gospel.  The issue they choose to sell men was the issue of "life enhancement".  

Instead of preaching repentance, judgement, sin, hell, or even the Cross, they decided to replace such "rigid" termonology with words like love, peace, joy, fulfillment, and prosperity.  One hundred years later, we find ourselves at a time when such things as the Fear of the Lord are completely unheard of even when Proverbs states that the Fear of the Lord is the beginning of Wisdom.  

Let me assure you that I'm not talking about "hell fire" preaching.  It's about presenting the FULL Gospel without compromise and without hesitation.  To tell a brother or sister that you fear for their eternal destiny based on the life they are living is not Judging someone.  

In my experience, the most quoted verse in the Bible is not even John 3:16 it's Matthew 7:1 "Judge not lest ye be judged".  Look at the full message of Matthew 7 again (in it's full context) however and you will see that Jesus is preaching against sin in this passage.  He says to purge the sin out of your life completely (remove the plank from your eye) SO THAT YOU CAN see clearly TO REMOVE THE SPECK (Sin) from your brother's eye.  Jesus' message is clearly one of removing sin from our lives and helping our brothers and sisters to remove sin from their lives as well.  Notice he uses the eye to illustrate this point.  He is saying you need to be delicate  in doing this.  You need to use care, compassion, and love to help your brothers and sisters see their sin.  That is why it is so important to be sensitive to the prompting of the Holy Spirit like you said in your post.  

I sort of got sidetracked there but I will just tell you that the problem is with the "Modern" church and the lack of Biblical truth that is being preached in pulpits today.  That is partly why when you look at the topics on this board, there are over 400 discussions about end time prophecy and less than 30 regarding witnessing.  We are shining the brass on the life boat while millions perish in the icy waters around us.  ....Content in our own salvation.   We've abandoned solid Biblical preaching with Seeker Sensitive mush.  The believer has been abandoned within the walls of the Church while we try to evangelize inside the churchhouse instead of out in the streets because it is simply more comfortable and convenient for us to do.   It's about the same as the 120 believers in the upper room on the day of Pentecost being enpowered by the Holy Spirit and instead of going into the streets to present the Gospel (as they were told in Acts 1:8 to do)they just put a sign outside the door that said "Visitors Welcome" and waiting for the crowds to flow in.  If that didn't work, they'd perform a few funny skits and water down the message a little to attract folks.  I'm so glad that they didn't do that.  I'm sorry, but I prefer God's method of growing the Church over Rich Warren's any day.  Sorry, I just have to be honest.

Bern, you need to think about the eternal well being of your church friends if they were to die.  Is it likely that they could be one of the majority that Dr. Kennedy was talking about that simply ARE NOT saved.  If there is even a chance of that, tell them the truth about what the Word of God says about such people.  Warn them of the judgement that is coming.  All this is spoken in love for you brother and your lost friends.  I care enough to be totally honest w/ you.

Your brother in Christ,
Neil
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Shylynne
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« Reply #4 on: January 06, 2005, 10:55:07 AM »

False Conversions

False conversions may be characterized by some outer reformation of life, by some outer conformity to religious standards and rituals and measures, without there having been an inner transformation of heart and spirit.

That there are false conversions and that there will be many of them is evidenced by this passage: "Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? And in thy name have cast out devils? And in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity" (Matt. 7:22,23).

Notice the words of Jesus, "I never knew you...." That is to say that there never was a day when these men’s names were entered into the book of life. And false conversions lead to false christs, false apostles, false prophets, false pastors, evangelists and teachers, false miracles and exorcisms, and false witnesses and anointings. Also note the word "many." These false conversions and their subsequent fruits will not be rare - they will abound and will put a heavy burden upon the church of Jesus Christ.

Millions of "believers" think they are born of God because they made an altar confession. They prayed the sinner’s prayer, they followed the right scriptural path to salvation, but they are nonetheless wells without water simply because they have never been drawn by the Father. They have not been sent by the Father to the Son for their conversion. Consequently, they lack the witness of the Holy Spirit that they were saved at the altar; they have been intellectually and scripturally convinced by their counselors that they are saved. In reality, they have not received a new heart but have simply made a decision for Christ, without realizing that WE CANNOT "DECISION" OURSELVES INTO THE KINGDOM OF GOD. So let me ask you, can you change the nature of a goat by dressing it in the clothing of a sheep, or can a bitter well bring forth sweet waters?

We must be born again!

Who will the Father draw and then present to the Son for salvation? The answer is: the Father will draw a sinner when he awakens to his destitute, sinful condition, recognizing his miserable fate, crying in his wicked heart, "Oh, God, have mercy upon me, a sinner," and when the sinner is willing to do nothing for the rest of his life but to love and to serve Jesus.

This is illustrated in the biblical parable of the Pharisee and publican in the temple. "And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner" (Luke 18:11).

If we try to get people saved without their being ashamed of their sins, we do the drawing and we do the "saving," and we end up with false conversions. We end up with spiritually dead people who have no fire and are unwilling to come to the next prayer meeting. And if they do come, they do so out of a sense of duty, and not out of love for God.

One of the evidences of a person genuinely converted is the witness of the Holy Spirit, for his Spirit "beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God" (Rom. 8:16). Another evidence of true conversion is that after receiving Christ, we will, with our first breath of the new life, say as Paul did on the Damascus Road, "Lord, what wilt thou have me to do?" (Acts 9:6b).

If you have a witness that you are born again, but at the moment of your conversion, you do not have a "Lord, what will you have me to do" attitude, you have a false witness, and you had a false conversion. Indeed, too many Christians have come to the altar more like the Pharisee, "God, I thank thee, that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican" (Luke 18:11). They come with an attitude of "I’m not so bad, not as bad as others."

So, when the conditions in the heart of the sinner are right, that sinner will be drawn. But he can only be drawn to the porch or vestibule of salvation. Although on the one hand he is now nigh unto God, on the other hand he is still far off. God is holy. and sin creates a gulf between God and man.

Hence, when the sinner is on the front porch of salvation, God can do no more for him but to send him to his Son. Only his Son can forgive, because only his Son shed his blood for the cleansing of the sinner. Only the Son can utter the welcome words: "Your sins are forgiven you." Hence, the process, "All that the Father giveth me shall come to me...." Hallelujah!

The two most common reasons why people seek salvation is because they want prosperity and heaven. But in either way, there is no salvation because there is no drawing of the Father unto him for such people.

1.  Jesus must be our prosperity. When Abraham refused the loot of the king of Sodom after the battle of the kings, God appeared to him in a vision, saying, "Fear not, Abram: I am thy shield, and thy exceeding great reward" (Gen. 15:1). If Jesus is not rich enough to us that we have to seek riches outside of him, our hearts will not be drawn by the Father. If Jesus is not the pearl of great price to us for which we are willing to sell all our other pearls in order to get him and his kingdom, we will not be drawn (Matt. 13:45,46). Those attempting to get saved to attain earthly blessings will leave Jesus when the storms of life arise.

2.  Christianity is not an Escapist Religion. Millions come to the altar each year because they fear hell and want to go to heaven. They only see Jesus and his atoning work as a stepping stone or as a doormat to wipe off their sinful feet in order to escape hell and get to heaven. They have no intention of serving and following the Lord Jesus in the here and now, each moment of each day.

Now, can you see why most churches do not have genuine, old-fashioned prayer meetings? Do you see why the average American minister prays less than four minutes each day? Or can you see why there is little witnessing being done; and whatever is being done is done in a methodically, dry, and technical way, not coming from the heart? Can you see why there is no soul travail? Can you see why church people want to get the church service over with in an hour and then are quick to change the conversation to something other than the things of God? Indeed, the hearts of persons with false conversions are far from God.

Can you see why the entertainment spirit has come into the church? Can you see why the world’s dress code, the world’s music, the world’s critical attitudes, the world’s materialism, and the world’s hurry and worry and immorality has entered the sanctuaries of the Lord? It is simply because much of the church is not born of God!

"No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him."

-edited for length
http://www.schultze.org/oldCTO234.HTML
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« Reply #5 on: May 04, 2005, 01:08:17 PM »

I realize this topic is somewhat aged, but I wanted to respond.

street preacher said:
Quote
I sort of got sidetracked there but I will just tell you that the problem is with the "Modern" church and the lack of Biblical truth that is being preached in pulpits today.  That is partly why when you look at the topics on this board, there are over 400 discussions about end time prophecy and less than 30 regarding witnessing.  We are shining the brass on the life boat while millions perish in the icy waters around us.  ....Content in our own salvation.

I must say that I am stirred by your words brother.   I do have a heart for the lost, and am activly seeking ways of sharing the Gospel with others.   I just wanted to let you know (if you're even still on the board) that I appreciate and am moved by your words and passion for witnessing to the lost.

Thanks!

Grace and Peace!
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Tim

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