“The Church is moving away from Evangelism by intrusion, to lifestyle by invitation.”
I love sharing Jesus with people. As I’ve been growing in God and listening to the call He placed on my life, I realize that this is what I was made for. That being said, every believer should be sharing their faith with anyone they can! However, God is changing the way we do it. We haven’t been very biblical about it. We’ve substituted arguments for power, and we’ve substituted condemnation for love. Now God is moving us into a whole new reformation of power, love, and identity.
This is so necessary. Believe it or not, we’re in a war with the devil and his kingdom. We’re in a cosmic battle between the forces of darkness and the forces of light. Before we get saved, we’re blinded to the truth. It takes a power encounter to remove the blinders. It takes contact with the kingdom of God to dislodge the devil from the lives of people. Forgiveness is available! Healing is available! God is still God, and He wants to touch people and pull them towards Himself.
Hell knows when the Kingdom of God is near. Hell flees when in contact with the Spirit of God. “But if I cast out devils by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God is come unto you.” Matthew 12:28 KJV demonstrating healing and deliverance to the lost opens their eyes to the kingdom of God and the redemptive work of the resurrection.
When encountering people, any person, it is vital that you know and walk in the love of God. You can’t try to love people, they’ll push all your buttons. Get rid of your buttons. The only way to do that is time with God. The presence of the Lord is the changing and transforming factor in the believer’s life. Become His love. “But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.” 2 Corinthians 3:18 KJV
So, when you meet a person in a store, or at the mall, or on the street, remember love. Love them where they are. Don’t worry about talking to everyone there is in the world. God does care about everyone, but He also cares about each individual person. As Heidi Baker says, “stop for the one.” Some of my favorite encounters with people have been the ones where I pray for them, bless them, and walk away. You may ask yourself, “did you lead them to the Lord?”
We need to really change the way we think about this. “Repent, for the Kingdom of God is at hand.”
First, not everyone is ready to give their life to Jesus. Second, people are expecting you to invite them to your church, or ask them to give money to your organization, or get them to pray something. The key phrase is this, “love with no strings attached.”
This does something to people. They can see Jesus in you. You didn’t ask for anything from them. Now sometimes they are ready to give their life to Jesus, but you’ll typically know that.
It’s interesting, I sort of overlooked this piece for a while, but I now realize how important it is. I won’t go on explaining why, let me just give a snapshot of what the gospel sounds like with our identity redeemed.
Every person was created in the image and likeness of God. (Genesis 1:26) We were created to, not just fellowship with God, but to be LIKE Him. Carrying His nature. We are the offspring of God. So when Adam and Eve fell, they took on the identity of the liar. The snake who deceives the whole world. He became our father. We were fathered by lies. And since then every person has been tricked and deceived. Born into sin, which became our identity, because it’s the identity that belongs to the devil. “Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.” John 8:44 KJV
So, when Jesus came and announced the kingdom of God, He began doing radical things. Forgiving sin, healing disease, and casting out demons. He was dislodging the powers of darkness. He said things like, “And ought not this woman, being a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan hath bound, lo, these eighteen years, be loosed from this bond on the sabbath day?” Luke 13:16 KJV
And, “…Son, be of good cheer; your sins are forgiven you.”” Matthew 9:2 NKJV
Jesus displayed the Father’s heart for us. So when He died and rose again, He didn’t just die for us, He died AS us. “For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.” 2 Corinthians 5:21 NKJV
When Jesus rose from the dead, God declared us righteous. Now anyone who surrenders their life to the King may enter His Kingdom. The one here, and the one to come. We become His children, and are restored back to the image of God.