Flashback: This Week Last Year [2012 Week 5]

Port Said Stadium RiotOn February 1st last year an Egyptian soccer match turned violent when fans of the opposing teams began to attack one another. The riot resulted in the death of 79 persons and well over 1,000 injured [source].

Unfortunately, this tragic story is back in the news this year as new riots have erupted as 21 people have been sentenced to death over last year’s Port Said Stadium disaster [source].

During the 5th week of 2012 there were a number of interesting Digital Sojourner posts including:

  • In A Galilean Happy Meal in The Hands of The Master brother Long Vo takes a look giving to the Lord’s even even during times of financial hardship. Drawing from his own personal experience and the Biblical account of the young boy who gave his 5 loaves and 2 fish to the Lord, Long challenges us to generously give to the Lord despite our own personal financial difficulties.
  • It has been said that a local church that does not have a presence online, is a church that to many people doesn’t exist. To this end brother Rey Reynoso offers some helpful advice on How to Build a Church Website
  • Brother Crawford Paul shared 4 Tips on Making Effective Videos to Promote the Gospel. As the importance of media grows for effectively reaching lost souls on the Internet, Crawford offers some very helpful tips for those who would endeavor to produce gospel oriented videos.
  • The most viewed article ever on Digital Sojourner was posted this week last year. The post Home Call: Dave Reid eulogized brother Dave Reid who unexpectedly died in a skiing accident. Many, including my wife who year earlier sat under his tutelage at Emmaus Bible College, have many fond memories of “Dr. Dave” and his ministry.

What was your favorite Digital Sojourner post of 2012 Week #5?

 

[photo credit]

 

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Halloween… Are You Ready?

PumpkinAs Halloween approaches many front yards around the community I live in are undergoing a transformation. Pumpkins (both real and plastic), blinking orange lights, dried corn stalks and even a few styrofoam gravestones is a clear signal that it’s time to stock up on candy in anticipation of dozens of sugar-starved kids knocking on my door.

As I wrote last year, Halloween is NOT my favorite ‘holiday.’ However it does provide an opportunity— maybe even the best opportunity of the year— to distribute gospel literature.

While we haven’t purchased any candy yet, I have placed an order for gospel tracts that should arrive in the next day or two. If you haven’t purchased tracts yet, now is the time to get your order in.

This year we ordered our tracts from Moments With The Book. However, there are many other excellent sources of Halloween themed gospel tracts—the point is NOW is the time to place your order!

Oh, and one more important point— don’t go cheap on the candy!

 
[photo credit]

 

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Getting Creative with the Gospel

In the past 2 weekends I had the privilege of helping with 3 outreach events. All 3 were very different from each other and had different goals. What excited me about these events was how creative they were. There was no pulpit and no hymns sung. For two of the events a short gospel message was given.  I really value people with enthusiasm and creativity when it comes to spreading the good news. Here are the 3 events and what they were about. If you have some of your own to share please post them in the comments below.


Men’s Golf Tournament


This is a great event with usually around 30-36 men attending of which half are not saved. They come for a very good breakfast, hear a short 10 minute gospel presentation then play 18 holes of golf. We offer prizes as well. There are 3 great reasons why this event is a great idea.

  1. It’s very easy to organize.  It doesn’t take a lot of work to host this event. All you need is a speaker, a golf course, some donated prizes and some people to put on the food. We have a person who goes around many local business and asks for prizes. You would be amazed and what you will get: restaurant gift cards, oil changes, car washes, shirts, hats and all kinds of other great prizes.
  2. It’s almost no cost to the local church. Since the prizes are donated the only expenses are food and giving a gift to the speaker.  We usually find a course that is a good prize and just tack on a little to cover food so really there’s hardly any expense at all.
  3. Men will come. You mention golf to some guys and they sign up on the spot. They don’t care if they have to endure a 10 minute “religious talk”, they just want to play golf.  Having 18 guys sitting listening to the gospel is a tremendous thing.

So give it a shot and see what the Lord will do through this idea. Let me know if you need any help getting started.

 


A Cross Country Runner’s Race


This is a really great event. I was privileged to help out for the second year. It’s held at a Christian camp with 160 acres of land. There are 2 races: a 1km walk/run and a 5km run. This year we had 120 runners with about 60 in each. Maybe who come for the 5km are runners in other races but are surprised at how tough the race is since it covers many different kinds of terrain and slope. Some times they are running straight up a hill. Everyone is given a BBQ meal after and there’s lots of prizes. There’s a short gospel presentation as well.


Community BBQ and Carnival


Our local church has been running one of these events for a few years now and it’s a great time. The purpose is to meet families and introduce them to who we are and also our kids programs which range from JK to grade 12. We offer BBQ hot dogs and burgers along with chips, cookies and drink. We set up about 12-15 carnival games. We have done this event in 2 ways: free with no prizes and paid with prizes. Both are great options depending on your budget and resource restraints. We have a number of people who are floaters to strike up conversations with the parents and kids. Since we have done this for a number of years the people who come often know us by name and look forward to the event. We usually see new kids sign up for our programs and it’s a great way to connect with the parents.

So what is your church doing to reach the lost? We’d love to hear!!

 

 

 

 

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Two Roads Two Destinies Chart

The Two Roads And The Two Destinies

 

Through a Christian Facebook group I recently discovered that the “Two Roads Two Destinies” evangelistic chart is available online for free in PDF format. If you are not familiar with the chart it is an excellent tool for sharing the message of the Gospel.

The chart is available in several different languages in up to three different variations (depending on the language). There is also a 22 lesson study guide available in 4 languages– including English and Spanish.

The resource has been made available by the saints at the Moncton Gospel Hall of Moncton, NB Canada. Thank you!

Jump directly to the download page here.

 

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NT Tuesday: Doing the Work of an Evangelist [2]

Glorious SunriseLast week we considered the topic of evangelism and, specifically, in relation to evangelism in a New Testament assembly. In my post, I suggested strongly that Jesus Christ’s command to “make disciples of all nations” was made primarily to individuals rather than to the Body. I’d like to substantiate that assertion, as well as, discuss the roll that the corporate Body plays in evangelism.

First, the Bible verses that charge us to share the Word of God are directed to the individual Christian. I don’t recall (but if you do, please share some verses) where the assembly corporately was instructed to “reach the lost.” (I think we need to hit the “refresh” button and double check ourselves on a number of verses. In many cases, I think the individual believer is being addressed and given various responsibilities and obligations, but we have abdicated the individual’s responsibilities to the corporate Body. There are various and sundry ways in which that has manifested itself. Lord willing, I will be addressing some of those areas in future posts.)

One of the Bible verses that I didn’t mention last week, but which proves my point here is found in 2 Timothy 4:5. Paul exhorts Timothy to “do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.” Timothy’s gift wasn’t that of an evangelist, but he is being exhorted to do the work of one. Why, you might ask? Because Paul recognized that each and every believer had the responsibility to share the gospel with the lost.

The second reason for my suggestion is that the spiritual gifts were given to individual believers to be used within the Body to train/equip other believers to do the work of ministry. Individual believers are being equipped to do the work – not the church, not the “pastor”, not the elders, but each and every believer is being equipped to do the work of ministry. And certainly, part of that work, is sharing the Good News with those who are lost and headed toward an eternity in Hell.

Here’s where the assembly comes into play. Every member of the Body has a spiritual gift that is meant to be used for equipping all the other members of the Body so that they can do the work that Jesus Christ gifted them to do. In other words, all the believers gathered together unto the name of Jesus Christ in your local fellowship has a responsibility to work together to equip one another to do the work of an evangelist (and other needed ministries).

Additionally, the believers within the assembly can encourage one another (daily) to do the work of an evangelist, to collectively meet the obligation to share the Gospel, even to provide funds to support those that are more active in the work. However, the responsibility remains with the individual. No individual can accurately complain that the “assembly” does not have a heart for the lost, or the assembly doesn’t reach out enough. We are individually responsible and we can’t abdicate that individual responsibility to the corporate body. If we call ourselves New Testament Christians, we must accept the responsibilities placed upon us individually. We so readily accept the corporate responsibilities, but we must also accept the individual ones.

Let’s encourage one another to be more vigilant as the days are short, we must redeem the time and fulfill our ministry.

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Photo credit: Chris Buggins, used with permission.

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Practical Tips For Evangelism

Lego Mini FigureOn Wednesday night at my assembly’s mid-week Bible study and prayer meeting brother Chuck Henderson moderated a fascinating discussion regarding evangelism.  The context of the discussion had in mind personal, or one-to-one evangelism in the “real” world (you know the physical, offline world).  Because the information is intensely practical, and should be of great help to any believer who would like to effectively share their faith, I have reproduced my notes in bullet point format below.

Warning: the following has only been slightly edited so there is a good chance that you will have a question or need some clarification.  If so just leave a comment, and I’ll see if I can help interpret my notes.

 

What is the goal? For people to come to a saving knowledge of Christ.
— focus on the goal
— keep on track – don’t be drawn away from the issue at hand
— the goal is not to win a debate

Know who it is you are sharing the Gospel with… and act accordingly.
— where does this person stand spiritually?
— are they an atheist?
— are they from a religious background?
— what do they already know?
— what are they confused about?

Skeptics… There are 3 types, know which type you are interacting with as each type should be dealt with differently.
— intellectual
— emotional
— volitional

How much contact do I or will I have with this person?
— will I ever see them again?
— how frequently?

What do you know about their beliefs or the doctrines they hold?
— don’t assume you know what they do or do not believe
— don’t assume they define words and terms the same way you do

Be respectful, be aware of others listening… Don’t embarrass the person.
— don’t be arrogant
— avoid jargon, use words that people can understand

Do your homework, know what you believe & why.
— be aware of your limits

Memorize scripture
— example: Romans 8:9 refutes the error of the second blessing

Other practical tips:
— avoid inappropriate relationships
— be aware of your surroundings
— be aware of any safety issues

 

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Photo flickr/blitzen

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QR Codes And The Gospel

Gospel Tract QR CodeI have blogged about the use of QR Codes before — what they are and how they can be used to further the message of the Gospel. Since my last post on the subject I have heard of a couple of creative ways the codes are being employed in sharing the Gospel message…

But first, the basics….

 


The Basics of QR Codes



 

What is a QR Code? A Quick Response (QR) Code is a pattern of little squares that make a larger square (pictured top left). The pattern or matrix of little squares conform to a specific, computer readable standard. QR Codes typically embed the address of a specific page on the Internet however other information, such as a phone number or even plain text, can also be embedded. The QR Code below contains the Bible verse John 3:16.

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3 Modern Ideas for Sharing the Gospel

Modern Ideas for Sharing the Gospel

 

This past Saturday was our annual neighborhood yard sale. When the weather is favorable (as it was this year) the event can attract several hundred people. This is, of course, a perfect opportunity to share the Gospel message with a world that so desperately needs the Lord Jesus Christ. It’s also a great opportunity to involve the entire family in the effort: my wife organized and set up several tables with the usual garage sale items, my children set up an ice cream stand, and I set up the Gospel table.

In the above picture of the Gospel table I numbered three specific ideas that you could incorporate into a similar effort:

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Titus 2:1-10 An Overview

 

This is the eleventh video in a series of teaching videos on the book of Titus. You can find the first video here.

If you have been following this series of Bible teaching on Titus you will be glad to know that we have progressed to Titus chapter two. This becomes really practical. When you live as a Christian you either add value to what you claim to believe or you detract from it.

Paul instructs Titus to teach the believers on the island of Crete not just what to believe but how to live a life which makes what they believe look attractive.

Challenge: Are you a value adding Christian or a doctrine destroying Christian? Watch to discover how this works.

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Jump to the next post in this series.

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Which Church? New Testament Churches Were Centers From Which The Gospel Radiated

Which Church?

It was said of the Thessalonian assembly, “From you sounded out the word of the Lord”, 1 Thessalonians 1:8. This should be a characteristic of every local church. Indeed, its continued existence depends on an energetic successful gospel outreach. This is the only method by which sinners are won to Christ and added to the company of believers bearing collective testimony for Him.

A metaphor of the assembly in scripture is that of a golden lampstand, Revelation 1 – 3. The point of the illustration is that the witness of every local church should be such, that the light of the Gospel penetrates the dense moral and spiritual darkness that pervades our communities. New Testament churches were not just respectable, religious social clubs, but they comprised of people who had a burden to reach their neighbours and friends with the life-changing gospel. Their commitment to that goal was unquestioning.

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To be continued…

Jump back to the first post in this series.

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