Saturday, November 19, 2016

Mystery of Evangelization

Mystery of Evangelization by Keith Cook

"The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going." John 3:8

For over thirty years I have studied, read, dreamed, and done evangelism. I have seen almost every fad and gimmick known to man on how to get people's attention, promote the message, and call for a decision for Christ.

Every year it seems that the evangelism section of my local Christian bookstore gets smaller and the emphasis given to evangelism by local churches, associations, denominations, and mission boards seems less emphatic. While this amazes me, it is not a mystery. I understand human nature. I am a student of history. People can "do church" without doing evangelism. Real evangelism takes risk, vision, insight, leading, and heart.

There is a Mystery to evangelism.(1) The Spirit moves as He sees fit. I often tell churches and crusade audiences that I do not bring revival in my suitcase. Revival and life breaks out in the strangest places and in the strangest ways.

There is Mystery in what Happens when the Spirit moves. You never really know what someone can do under the direction of the Holy Spirit until He actually invades the life and actions. When the Spirit moves often there are tears of joy or tears of pain. Rejoicing and combating, going out to do God's will and allowing God to direct. It is a mystery, but a mystery worth following.

There is Mystery in that God can use us to do His will. Is it not amazing that God would consider using us to spread His Message when He has angels and qualified individuals more holy and worthy than we are, yet, He still chooses to use us to share His love. It is amazing and confounding!

There is Mystery in what God allows to Happen. Why did 9/11 have to happen? Why does there have to be pain and suffering? Why did a dear servant of God die of cancer when they were doing so much good? Why does God bless one ministry with funding while others seem to have very little? Why did one man come to Christ at an early age and another on his deathbed? It is a mystery that requires faith and trust in God alone for our direction.

There is also a Mystery about the kind of evangelist God would have us all be. Before we can effectively do anything for God we must be something.

We must be a true believer!
We must be a person of integrity!
We must be a student of prayer and the Word!
We must be a servant of Jesus!

The right combination of servant-hood is to be and do at the same time. Be in Christ as you share Christ!

While it is a mystery that God can and will use us, it is in His Word that we are assured that He will use us if we will be obedient servants. Mysteriously serve Jesus with your life. Amaze your friends! Amaze yourself! Even amaze the Devil, keep him guessing as to what you will do next.

(1) Original idea for this outline came from my teaching series of lessons from the Worldwide Perspectives Materials by Meg Crossman, page 166.

Daily Prayer Focus: Pray for Boldness and Courage as you actively seek opportunities to carry out the Great Commission.

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On The Go Daily Devotion for November 19, 2016
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