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What the Church Does, pt3


What the Church Does, pt3

Leadership in Context with Keith Tucci

Episode 196

The Church has an upward relationship with God, an inward relationship with the members of the body of Christ, and an outward relationship with the world.

You don’t wait until one is perfect to do the next, but you do have to be legitimately pursuing excellence in one to go to the next. The sequence of upward, inward, and outward is biblical. We worship God (upward), we “one another'' each other (inward), and the last one is evangelism (outward). We don’t wait for the Church to get perfect to evangelize. At the same time, you have to have inward integrity before outward expression.

Jesus’ last command should be our first concern.

What was the last thing Jesus told us to do?—Go into all the world and make disciples. What He didn’t say—Let the Church, as an organization, make disciples.

Who makes disciples? Disciples make disciples. The first law in the Bible is that things reproduce after their own kind.

Evangelism by program or strategy is good and works. But far and away, we are going to have the greatest influence when the average believer shares his faith and realizes that we have living bread to give one another. We have the responsibility and privilege of bringing others to Christ. Anything else we do outside of that becomes mercenary, not missionary. Anything outside of that becomes a substitute for the real thing, rather than us sharing our faith one-on-one.

The five-fold gift of the evangelist is not just to be a soul winner, but to impart the soul winning gifts and nature of God. An evangelist is not to take the job away from the believer, but to empower believers to share their faith.

Unfortunately, we have substituted acts of kindness for sharing our faith. The two should go together. You can be the nicest person in town, serving others, but if you never mention the gospel, they will never get it. Romans 10 asks, how will they hear unless someone tells them? Acts of kindness and acts of service do validate our message, but they are never a substitute for the message. Faith comes by hearing, hearing of the Word—we have to introduce people to Christ.

We can also tend to have discipleship programs that don't include evangelism. Discipleship without evangelism is not discipleship; it’s just a personal growth strategy. The whole premise of discipleship is reproduction. If you say you are discipling someone, part of that should be teaching and demonstrating how to share their faith with someone. Exercise that muscle so they don’t believe it is just a specialty of a five-fold evangelist.

Evangelism should be just as central to us as going to church is. Just as central as tithing. Just as central as walking in forgiveness. Sharing our faith, inviting people to Christ, asking questions to create engagement and open up a conversation with someone should be part of our everyday interactions.

If we could get most of the people in our churches to share their faith on a regular basis, we would have a much happier congregation because we would be outward focused and have inward integrity in caring, serving, and encouraging one another.

Does your growth plan include evangelism? Are you praying for, seeking out, strategizing how to reach your friends, family, coworkers, neighbors? You were born again so that you could reproduce and give God great joy in the price He paid in gaining another soul for Heaven.

Join us next week as Keith Tucci continues to put leadership truth in the context of the local church. And as always, please like, share, rate/review, and invite others to listen. See you next week!

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