Archive for the ‘Christian Living’ Category

After reading an article on ways of evangelism, and watching teens, twenty and thirty something’s boldly speak out, march and protest on national television, and get in face of a politician’s spouse shouting, I am compelled to post a few words from my book Breaking the Evangelism Code.
Don’t let the devil fool you that home visits, door to door, street evangelism, passing out Gospel tracts does not work today. He is a liar and deceiver. They will work if you die to yourself and let Jesus be Jesus in you and through you.
 
From Breaking the Evangelism Code:
 
The church has fallen for the devil’s lie that evangelism does not work. What better lie to promote! He could not stop the church from doing evangelism by persecution. So he did the second most effective thing, tell the church that evangelism does not work anymore. The church today lives as though the gospel is powerless and acts as though the gospel is in some type of code.
The church appears to be in a state of confusion and stumbling around as though intoxicated by some cheap wine or fermented drink that the devil has concocted when it comes to evangelism. The church seems as though it is in a thick fog and acts as though the gospel is in some type of cryptic code, needing to be solved before it can tell the world about Jesus.
While the church struggles trying to discover a new approach or grasp which evangelism strategy or method works best, the world is going to hell on jet fuel. The declining church continues to listen to some of our leaders and individuals, whom we have deemed as the experts, who fan the flames of disillusionment and gospel-phobia, while the devil is running havoc on our families, our marriages, our churches, and communities. He continues to lead many lost people to an eternal fiery hell while we sit around trying to figure out how to grow the church without going outside of our walls or leaving our soft pews to do intentional evangelism.
Evangelism is the good news that the world needs to hear. The message of the gospel is that God set up a roadblock to hell; it is called the cross. It is all about the cross. Jesus died on a cross so we would not have to pay for our sins in hell.
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I am teaching a survey of the Old Testament and as I read the Scriptures and do research I am seeing a pattern how God gives provision and how we should respond to His provision.

God promised Israel He would give them the land known as Canaan. In Genesis 12, God called Abram to go west to a land He would give to Abram and his descendants.

God instructs Moses to lead Israel out of captivity in Egypt to Canaan. Then after forty years of wandering in the wilderness because the Israelites rejected God’s provision. They did not want to take possession of the promised land. They believed the 10 of the 12 spies, who lied and misled the Israelites. Because they rejected God’s provision, those people would not see the promised land, but their children would one day.

Once again, Joshua and a new generation Israelites find themselves at the edge of the Promised Land. Before instructing Joshua, God promised Joshua that every place he set his foot, God would give it to Israel (Joshua 1:1-5).  The caveat is they would have to act, take steps and take possession. They had to go out in faith and take possession of land (Joshua 3).

In our present time, God has instructed us that He has established the government (Romans 13). The purpose of government to protect the innocent and convict the guilty. Our response to government is to support it. We support it by exercising our right as a temporary citizen of this world, and country by voting. I say temporary because, for a Christian, our eternal citizenship is in heaven (Philippians 3:20; John 14:2).

So, what if you choose not to vote? Then you are going against God’s plan for government. And like the nation of Israel, who repeatedly went against God’s instructions, His word, leadership, and rejected His word. Rejecting God’s word is a sin, and it always leads to suffering and consequences. The Israelites faced the consequences of their decisions for a generation to come.

So, obey God’s word, get involved in your community by engaging through evangelism, prayer, and exercising your rights as a citizen vote.

Luke 12:13-15

13 Someone in the crowd said to him, “Teacher, tell my brother to divide the inheritance with me.” 14 Jesus replied, “Man, who appointed me a judge or an arbiter between you?” 15 Then he said to them, “Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; life does not consist in an abundance of possessions.”

The man in this passage wanted what he thought was rightfully his. From a legal perspective, he may have had a portion of his father’s estate coming to him. The man was anxious at heart, waiting to receive his desired portion of his father’s possessions.

When the man made an appeal to Jesus for him to instruct his brother, who was probably the administrator of their father’s estate to give him his portion Jesus responded with a caution. “Watch out!” In other words, “examine yourself that your greed has not consumed you!” Greed is like cancer that will eat away at your inner being.

This individual probably had a world view that life without “things” or “without an abundance of possessions” is not a quality of life. “Watch Out!” That your worldview is not crowded with thoughts of wanting what someone else has. The Bible refers to this a covetousness.

Jesus responded with “Life does not consist in an abundance of possessions.” (V 15) Material things, possessions, will eventually deteriorate, wear out, break down. Or materials thing can be stolen or lost. Jesus taught where our focus and treasure should be in Matthew 6:19-21:

19 “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. 20 But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

We can acquire many possessions and wealth. We can store up great wealth. But in the end, at death’s doorway, someone else will eventually get all your possessions. When you die it will not be how much you held in your hands. What will matter is “Who has you in His hands?” Your soul must be in God’s hands. Jesus taught,

20 “But God said to him, ‘You fool! This very night your life will be demanded from you. Then who will get what you have prepared for yourself?’ 21 “This is how it will be with whoever stores up things for themselves but is not rich toward God.”

If you have never given your heart and life to Jesus Christ by repenting of your sins. You can do it right now. Ask Jesus to forgive your sins. Confess He is Lord and Savior. Thank Jesus for dying for your sins and taking your eternal punishment in hell. Thank Him for making a way for you to get into heaven, by His resurrection.

If you want God to have your soul and life in His hands, pray a simple like this.

Dear God, I believe that Jesus is Your Son. That He died for my sin, was buried and rose again from the dead. God, I have sinned against You and I ask You to forgive me. Jesus, I ask you to be my Lord and Savior. Thank You for saving me. In Jesus Name.

If you prayed the prayer, and invited Jesus into your heart, Congratulations! I want you to grow in Christ Jesus.

Things to grow in Christ:

  1. You will want to begin reading your Bible every day.
  2. Begin with the Gospel of John. Read one chapter every day.
  3. Pray every day to God in Jesus Name.
  4. Read a daily devotion. To get a free daily devotion go to https://billygraham.org/devotions/
  5. Get the Living in Christ booklet – https://myhopewithbillygraham.org/product/living-in-christ-booklet/
  6. Watch how God has changed other people’s lives. Watch free videos at https://myhopewithbillygraham.org/programs/
  7. Find a Bible teaching preaching church. Go to http://www.sbc.net/churchsearch/

 

 

 

 

The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association has available a booklet by Dr. Bill Bright that every Christian needs to read.  The booklet is entitled “5 Duties of a Christian Citizen” by Bill Bright.

There are 5 main topics discussed in reference to a Christian and our duty as a representative of TheLord Jesus Christ and our God-given freedom in America.

  1. Pray
  2. Register to Vote
  3. Become Informed
  4. Help Elect Godly People
  5. Vote

Here are some excerpts from Dr. Bill Bright booklet, “5 Duties of A Christian Citizen”

  • “By our actions, God is able to do His will in Government.”
  • “Voting gives us an opportunity to be salt and light in government America’s moral fiber is cut away one layer at a time. “
  • “We are in danger of losing our nation, and our God-given freedom to those who disdain the God of nation’s founders.”
  • “If we lose Christian freedoms to express our faith, we will lose the freedom to fulfill the Great Commission throughout America.”

You can get your copy of Dr. Bill Bright booklet at www.BillyGrahambookstore.org

Or contact vbenavides@billygraham.org  in Metro Atlanta, GA/ Metro Macon, GA.