To Turn Many: Part 2 Nov 9, 2006 14:00:21 GMT -5
Post by Brother Ben on Nov 9, 2006 14:00:21 GMT -5
To Turn Many to Righteousness - Part 2
In the first section of this article we discussed a number of powerful ways to share the gospel with the lost, including street preaching, tracts, and gospel signs. Let’s suppose you have taken to heart some of these thoughts, and have decided that you will use whatever method you can to win, or at least to warn, as many people as possible before Christ returns.
Imagine that you have set aside an hour or two to do some evangelism in your local city. You pick up a box of tracts, find a busy sidewalk, & pass out about a thousand of these pieces of literature during the time you have available. When you arrive home, however, you discover that you had mistakenly grabbed the wrong box of tracts on your way out the door. You had picked up a box of BLANK tracts that were waiting to be sent to the printer, and had just spent the last couple of hours passing them out to pedestrians. What kind of thoughts would you be thinking?
Imagine another scenario. Instead of tracts, you grab a gospel sign and head for town just in time for rush hour. After spending the next hour holding the sign beside a major intersection, you drive home believing that you have prompted thousands of people to consider the condition of their eternal soul. But then you discover that you had picked of the wrong sign, a BLANK one, and had just spent the last hour holding up a sign with nothing on it. How would this make you feel?
If you are like me, there would be one sad thought going through your mind in each of these situations: “Wasted Opportunity”. Instead of a thousand people going home and reading a tract with a gospel message, they are wondering what kind of an idiot would hand them a blank piece of paper. Instead of ten thousand people driving home thinking about death, judgment, and their condition before God, they are thinking the same sinful thoughts that they were thinking before they saw you and your sign. The entire hour or more that you have just invested in what you thought was witnessing has turned out to be nothing more than an exercise in futility.
Perhaps you’re thinking that these stories are ridiculous, and that you would never be so careless as to waste your witnessing opportunities in such a way. Yet I would like to suggest in this article that many of us similarly are wasting many of our greatest witnessing opportunities on a regular basis.
Let me explain what I mean by asking a question. On a typical trip that you take into town for shopping, business, or recreation, how many people see the vehicle that you are driving? I’m not asking for the number of people who notice your vehicle, but rather for the number of people who have your vehicle pass in front of their vision at least one time during the day. A thousand people? Maybe even ten thousand? Whatever the number is, I would suspect that it is far more than most of us realize.
In a sense, your vehicle is a huge sign-board that you are holding in front of thousands of people every week. If it is a blank sign, then thousands of people go about their lives with the same thoughts of lust, hate, greed, or whatever thoughts they were thinking before they saw your vehicle.
If, on the other hand, you have short passages from God’s Word printed in large letters on the exterior of your vehicle, these same people are instead driving home with God’s Word imprinted on their minds. Many of these same people would never have accepted a gospel tract from you had you offered them one. But now, willingly or unwillingly, they have read the messages on your automobile and are stuck with thinking thoughts about God for a while.
How many of these people will respond to the messages they’ve read? The answer to that question lies between them and God. We do know this, though, that God’s Word is quick and powerful, that it will not return void, and that it is like a hammer that breaks the rock in pieces. We also know there have been people who committed their lives to Christ as a result of seeing gospel messages printed on vehicles. The book “A Sower Went Forth” (available from Rod & Staff) records some true accounts of this sort of thing happening.
A godly brother from another state recently told me that he believes every church community ought to have its own sign-making equipment. With the technology available today, attractive, high-quality yard signs, vehicle signs, and magnetic signs can be made with a minimal amount of experience.
We are privileged to live in a land where the vast majority of the people know how to read. Let’s use this fact to our advantage as we look for ways to reach the ungodly with the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Though there will always be witnessing opportunities that we, being human, will miss, perhaps as we work together we can recognize and put to use some of these opportunities that are sitting in our laps. And as we do so, we can take positive steps toward changing from being the “quiet of the land” to those who have “filled Jerusalem with their doctrine”.
May God grant us wisdom, grace, and courage to help us to this end.