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Aug 27, 2017

Redefining Evangelism

Redefining Evangelism

Speaker: Dennis Gallaher

Series: Love Thy Neighbor

Category: Sunday Morning

Have you thought about eternity lately? Every day we interact with people who need to know how to share eternity with us.

Opening Scripture:
Romans 14:10  But you, why do you judge your brother? Or you again, why do you regard your brother with contempt? For we will all stand before the judgment seat of God.

I will not negate that what we do here on earth has importance, but it is who you know that will matter in eternity.

At the fall of man:
- God could have punished Adam.
- God could have started over.
- God could have sentenced him.

But the ultimate result of his sin was separation from God, not the loss of love but of relationship.

That’s why John 3:16 is so amazing.
- As the result of God’s love…”For God so loved the world”
- His plan was not about fixing, but re-relating to man…”He gave His son”
- And whoever would believe in Him results in a process of walking, relating, evaluating, and obeying Him…”Shall not perish, but have eternal life”

The emphasis is on the end, not on the process of getting there. The goal is eternity.

When we reach that kind of clarity of vision, then our lives, goals, and expectations actually have an opportunity to focus.

God’s vision is restored eternity; our vision is often clouded by having a good life now and leaving eternity till it comes.

God’s vision is encapsulated in four chapters:

Read Genesis 1-2
- God shows us the world as He intended, Adam and Even in perfect relationship with each other and with God.

Read Revelations 21-22
- God tells us what Eternity will be like, where we will be in perfect relationship with God and one another.

Deuteronomy 7:6  For you are a holy people to the Lord your God; the Lord your God has chosen you to be a people for His own possession out of all the peoples who are on the face of the earth.

Peter repeats this declaration and owns it for the church of Jesus Christ.

1 Peter 2:9-10  But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God’s own possession, so that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; for you once were not a people, but now you are the people of God; you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.

In between these two bookends, the church is to live with a clear and uncluttered vision as to what is really important - eternity.

Matthew 16:18-19  I also say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build My church; and the gates of Hades will not overpower it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; and whatever you bind on earth shall have been bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall have been loosed in heaven.

Our commissioning began with these words. If the church is to fulfill our calling, then we must return first to the vision that our Father has for us…
- To be a holy people; yes, behavior matters.
- To know that God chose us long before we chose Him.
- He has chosen us to possess us, to make us fully His own.

Reread 1 Peter 2:9-10
- That we would be the temple for His Holy Spirit.
- That we would be holy as He is holy.
- That, in great faith, we would put aside this world and all it’s trinkets to fight the good fight for souls.

Habakkuk 2:1-3  I will stand on my guard post and station myself on the rampart; and I will keep watch to see what He will speak to me, and how I may reply when I am reproved. Then the Lord answered me and said, “Record the vision and inscribe it on tablets, that the one who reads it may run. “For the vision is yet for the appointed time; it hastens toward the goal and it will not fail. Though it tarries, wait for it; for it will certainly come, it will not delay.

We must return to a clear vision of what God has for His ultimate eternity. Our vision must return to God’s love for people.

We must be a people where evangelism is marked by holy living and forged faith.

Psalms 139:23-24  Search me, O God, and know my heart; try me and know my anxious thoughts; and see if there be any hurtful way in me, and lead me in the everlasting way.