How the Holy Spirit Works Through the Word

By Lynn D. Headrick

I hope that the reader will derive as much joy and profit from the reading of this article as I have received from the preparation of it. I have been preaching the gospel for forty years and must confess that I have preached much more on God and Christ than I have preached concerning the Holy Spirit. The more I study the godhead, the deeper becomes my appreciation for “the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit” (2 Cor. 13:14).

This article will identify and enumerate various aspects of the work of the Holy Spirit and provide evidence to show that each facet of the Spirit’s work is accomplished by means of his words. One may know that there is a Supreme Intelligence – God – by observing the universe (cf. Rom. 1:20; Psa. 19:1). However, all that we know about the work of the Holy Spirit is learned from the Bible by direct statements made by and about the Spirit, by examples of what the Spirit did and by necessarily inferring some things from the facts stated.

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Gospel Meetings

By Connie W. Adams

In spite of the claim of some that “the days of gospel meetings are over”, congregations continue to have them. Reports in bulletins and other periodicals indicate that some meetings are productive of much good while others seem to have little good effect. It seems that in the last few years there has been an upswing in the number of people obeying the gospel in meetings. I do not claim to be an expert on the subject, nor to have had the amount of experience in meeting work that others have had. Over the past twenty years I have been privileged to work in a good many meetings in various sections of the country I and within the last four years have preached in sixty meetings. From these experiences some observations have been made, and some judgments formed which I wish to pass along to the reader.

Why the Difference?

You can go to a place for a meeting and preach your heart out to empty seats, with half or less of the members making any attempt to attend, and very few visitors and be chilled to the bone from the indifference. You spend a week trying to revive an almost dead church, while in your heart you wonder if you would not have done more good at home. Then you close there, and the next nights begin somewhere else and right away you sense the difference. Here the meeting house is clean; the tract rack is neat and filled with a good selection. There is warmth and friendliness about the people, the house is comfortably filled the first night and the crowds, interest and enthusiasm mount throughout the week. You preach along the Mme general lines as in the last meeting and several people obey the gospel. You close and go home with a feeling of accomplishment. What makes the difference?

(1) Some brethren have a meeting as a matter of tradition. They have always had a meeting every year, whether they needed it or not! They get a preacher lined up to come, run his picture, in the paper, have some handbills printed (and usually wind up with half of them left over), and think they are ready for a meeting. The members of some of these congregations act like they have just enough religion to make them miserable,

(2) Successful meetings are the result of much planning, prayer and effort. They do not just “happen.” A congregation with a lively program of personal evangelism will nearly always have a few people about ready to obey the gospel when the meeting time comes. The members talk the meeting up. There is an air of expectancy and enthusiasm. I used to hear older preachers talk about a meeting having a good “tone” and did not know what they meant. Now I do. You see members come in all smiles as they introduce you to their neighbor, or a relative, or a co-worker from the office or factory. You see them with the same person when the service is over looking over the tracts and trying to steer their friend into selecting two or three that would be a big help to him in learning the truth. Often zealous members make arrangements for you to come and talk with their friends. In short, the congregations which have good meetings have done their homework.

(3) The preachers responsibility in a meeting is serious. If he is a sour apple by nature, this will be reflected both in and out of the pulpit and will cause some whom he could help to feel that he is unapproachable. He must come fully prepared to preach the truth without fear or favor of man, yet with a genuine warmth and spirit of kindness. He must resolve to preach what is needed. This will not always be appreciated. There may be serious problems in the congregation which require teaching. There may be pressures in a given area which afflict the church. Sometimes the church may be in a battle with institutionalism or the social gospel movement, and need some help. There may be prospects almost ready to obey the truth that need to be taught on certain subjects and persuaded to become Christians. Nearly every congregation has a problem with members being afflicted with the spirit of the world. There are devout saints who need encouragement. There are mature and advanced Bible students who need meat, as well as babes who need milk.

I cannot speak for other preachers, but I cannot spend all day long socializing, or on a golf course, or making an endless round of calls on people who are not really prospects at all, calls that are more social than anything else, then rush to a big meal somewhere, and finally get to the meeting house worn out, get up to preach and do my best work. Regardless of how many times a man has spoken on a subject, he ought to have Some time fo-ponder his lesson, refresh his mind on the passages to be used and recheck the sequence of points he plans to make. Before all the golfers descend on my head, let me add that I have nothing against a man getting a little exercise during a meeting, and if he can find time for a round or two, then that is fine with me. But I have worked with preachers in meetings who played every day and have seen some of them get up and make a flop in the pulpit when I knew they were capable of much better.

The preacher’s private conduct in a meeting can help or hinder not only the meeting but the work in general at that place after he is gone. Some fall into the trap of hearing one side of a dispute and then at, tempt to grind someone’s axe for him. It is not uncommon for members to ask questions of visiting preachers and this often affords opportunity to do much good teaching. Sometimes this may involve close study and even argumentation. Some delight in asking loaded questions, or in trying to see if a difference can be discovered between the visiting and local preacher. I have known of preachers bringing up questions in private homes that raised more doubt than anything else, so that the local preacher would have his hands full for several months putting out the brush fires so carelessly caused. “Let your speech be always with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man” (Col. 4:6).

Bring a faithful preacher who practices what he preaches, together with a zealous congregation which has made adequate preparation, and you will have a good meeting. The truth will be preached, sinners will be instructed in the way of righteousness, and the saints will be edified. Whether they are “visible” or not there will be good results from such an effort.

TRUTH MAGAZINE XIV: 2, pp. 23-24
November 13, 1969

 

 

The Value of Gospel Meetings

The apostle Paul writes, “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes” (Rom. 1:16). The gospel message is the power that God has decided to use to work on the hearts and lives of men and women in order to draw them to Himself. But in order for the gospel to do any good, it must be preached (10:13-14).

The book of Acts demonstrates that the gospel was preached to those who were already Christians, as well as to those who were not, by preachers who traveled to various places. The Scriptures describe various preachers traveling and preaching for various congregations for short periods of time in order to reach the lost and build up the saved with the gospel of Christ (Acts 14:21-22; 15:36, 40-41; 20:6-7). An incredible amount of good was accomplished through the efforts of these churches and preachers as the saving message was spread. Many local churches and preachers engage in something similar today. We commonly refer to these modern efforts as “gospel meetings.” It seems that many brethren have grown weary of “gospel meetings.” Meetings are becoming shorter in length, less frequent in number, and are not as well attended as they used to be. Furthermore, for those that have not abandoned the practice of having gospel meetings altogether, there exists the danger of continuing to have meetings each year simply out of habit. In addition to these concerns, the question is sometimes raised as to whether or not there is really any value in having gospel meetings anymore. For these reasons, we would do well to give some much needed consideration to the subject of gospel meetings.

What is the value of a gospel meeting?

1. The value of reaching the lost with the gospel of Christ. Jesus is the only hope of salvation for the sinner (John 14:6; 8:24). In fact, the apostle Paul states that the Lord will one day come “in flaming fire taking vengeance on those who do not know God, and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ” (2 Thess. 1:8). In order for a lost sinner to obey the gospel he must first hear the gospel. Many of our religious friends regularly attend religious groups in which they hear the opinions and doctrines of men, rather than the gospel. They may never visit the services of a church that is serving as “the pillar and ground of the truth” (1 Tim. 3:15) in their community on a Sunday morning due to obligations already in place. But they may be willing to come visit one of our services during a gospel meeting, since the gospel meeting presents opportunities in addition to our normal meeting times on Sunday. There are people all around us who are in dire need of hearing the gospel and, contrary to what many seem to believe, lost sinners do still attend gospel meetings when invited by members of the church. A gospel meeting is used as a valuable tool for evangelism when the lost are invited to hear the good news.

2. The value of spending more time together worshiping God. It is obvious that the early disciples of Christ spent as much time as possible together praising the Lord and studying His word (Acts 2:42, 46-47). Gospel meetings provide an opportunity to take time out of our busy schedules in order to spend some more time worshiping God and studying His word together. Are you interested in doing that? Gospel meetings provide those who have a sincere interest in spiritual things with a great opportunity to meet together more often in order to glorify God. Time spent stirring one another up to “love and good works” is valuable time (Heb. 10:24).

3. The value of edifying the members of the church. One of the primary responsibilities of each local church is to edify, or build up its members (Eph. 4:14-16; cf. 1 Cor. 14:26). Each local church of Christ is responsible for seeing to it that each of its members is built up and strengthened spiritually. Edification takes place when we worship together in spirit and truth and study God’s word together. Gospel meetings provide a great opportunity for edification as the members of the church gather each night to sing, pray, and listen to God’s word being taught. Those who are bored with gospel meetings, or who ignore gospel meetings are sure to discourage their brothers and sisters in Christ. Any time spent in the interest of edifying the saints is time that is spent in a valuable pursuit.

4. The value of learning and growing. The apostle Peter charges God’s people with the responsibility to “grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ” (2 Pet. 3:18). A gospel meeting provides a great opportunity for the local church to hear a faithful man preach the word of God. While we may have the opportunity to hear eight or ten sermons in an average month, a gospel meeting may present the opportunity to hear that many lessons over the course of only one week. Do not forget that “faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God” (Rom. 10:17). What value can be placed upon an opportunity to learn and grow by hearing the word of God proclaimed?

5. The value of putting spiritual things ahead of worldly matters. Jesus expects those who follow Him to seek the kingdom of God first in life (Matt. 6:33). A gospel meeting provides a unique opportunity to focus on spiritual matters and to put the kingdom of God ahead of other things. In many ways, a gospel meeting also exposes one’s priorities in life. We will prepare for social occasions, weddings, fun events, and holidays and circle them on our calendars so that we will be sure to set time aside for them even if it means booking time off of work. How many of us place the same emphasis on setting time aside to attend a gospel meeting? There is inestimable value in laying aside worldly matters in order to focus on things of eternal importance.

Conclusion

Gospel meetings are certainly not the only method by which the local church may seek to reach the lost and edify the saved. But at the same time, gospel meetings can be used as a very effective tool in accomplishing the Lord’s work once we recognize the potential value of such concentrated efforts to “proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light” (1 Pet. 2:9). Don’t give up on gospel meetings!

David Dann

2108 Amherst Dr.

Lewisville, TX

The Greatness of Small Things

For behold your calling, brethren, that not many wise after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called: but God chose the foolish things of the world, that he might put to shame them that are wise; and God chose the weak things of the world, that he might put to shame the things that are strong; and the base things of the world, and the things that are despised, did God choose, yea and the things that are not, that he might bring to nought the things that are: that no flesh should glory before God. But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who was made unto us wisdom from God, and righteousness and sanctification, and redemption: that, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord. – I Corinthians 1:28-31

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The Church: All-Sufficient In Evangelism

This is now the seventh article in this series on All-Sufficiency. In our last article we attempted to prove that the church, by its verv nature, is inevitably all all-sufficient organization. Previously, we studied what the mission of the church is, and demonstrated that no one can add one act to this prescribed mission. At this point in our study we are ready to investigate whether or not the church is sufficient for the discharge of its prescribed mission. A believer ordinarily would not think that there would be the necessity of proving this point before other believers. Yet this has been one of the chief battlegrounds for over a century, and bids fair to maintain this significance for at least another generation. The church’s work is limited to evangelism, edification, and benevolence. There are both those who explicitly and those who implicitly deny the adequacy of the church to fulfill its mission. In this lesson we will consider only the all-sufficiency of the church in evangelism.

The importance of the mission of the church in evangelism is emphasized by a recognition of the following facts:

1. Man is lost in sin (Isa. 59:1, 2; Ezek. 18:20; Luke 19:10; Rom. 6:23; 2 Thess. 1:7, 8 ; Rom. 3:23). Every person that has reached the age of responsibility before God has transgressed the divine law. The moment a person commits his first sin, he then stands condemned. Men often attempt to exonerate some who live in certain distant countries of any guilt. But these, too, have sinned and fallen short of God’s glory. These persons are not lost simply because they have not heard and obeyed the gospel; they are lost because they have sinned.

2. The gospel is God’s only power of salvation in this age. (Rom. 1:16; Jas. 1:21; I Pet. 1:22, 23; 1 Cor. 4:15; 1 Tim. 2:4; Pet. 1:3, 4). This is a point which ought not need to be proved to a people who has had the Bible as long as have we. I suppose God could have chosen to save people in some other way had He so desired, but the fact is He chose to save men by the foolishness of preaching (I Cor. 1:21). God has no other power of salvation in this age. Realizing that men are lost in sin, and that the Gospel is God’s only power unto salvation in this age, we therefore should be more zealous in our effort to prosecute this aspect of the mission of the church to evangelize the world.

3. The church is God’s missionary society — God’s chosen means of getting the gospel to the lost. And just as the gospel is God’s only power of salvation, the church is God’s only organization to take the gospel to the lost. God has purpose for the church (Eph. 3:8-11). The purpose of God for His church is its mission. A part of that purpose is to “build up” the body of Christ (Eph. 4:11, 12). This involves the preaching of the word of the kingdom that others might be brought into it. I think I am safe in saying that in addition to the responsibility to worship, this preaching responsibility is the primary responsibility of the church. We learn from the Bible that the church is:

a. God’s sowing agency. Jesus says “The kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man that sowed good seed in his field” (Matt. 13:24). The church is therefore God’s sowing agency, and it is the only agency that He put here for that purpose. However, the church being a product of God, He need not put any other agency here with that purpose, for His products are perfect for the accomplishment of the divine purpose assigned them.

b. God’s sending agency. “For the kingdom of heaven is like unto a man that was a householder, who went out early in the morning to hire laborers into his vineyard” (Matt. 20:1). These being hired, he “sent” them to their work. The church is likened unto this man who “sent” them to their work. In Acts11:22 we see an example of this being done. “And the report concerning them came to the ears of the church which was in Jerusalem: and they sent forth Barnabas as far as Antioch.” God’s church is His only sending agency.

c. God’s supporting agency. In I Tim. 3:14, 15 the church is said to be the pillar and support of the truth. The church is that which stands under the truth-that which upholds, supports the truth. I think this is to be significance of the statement in Rev. 1:20 that “the seven candlesticks are seven churches.” A candlestick is that which holds forth the light. The churches are that which hold forth the glorious light of the gospel. Of course, when one stands under the truth, he supports it. When one supports the truth, this involves the support of those who proclaim the truth. So Paul says “I robbed other churches, taking wages of them that I might minister unto you” (2 Cor. 11:8). In Phil. 4, Paul declares that the Philippian church had fellowship with him in the beginning of the gospel. They sent once and again to support him. God put no other institution here who’s business it is to support the gospel.

Having learned that God assigned to the church the work of sowing the seed of the kingdom, of sending forth and supporting gospel preachers, we inquire further to see if the church was sufficient to accomplish these assignments. We need also to observe that God made no provision for the church universal to function as a single unit. The only functioning organization about which one can read is a local church. The congregation is the organizational arrangement God provided to see that the gospel is preached. When we say the church is sufficient to preach the gospel, other than that work done by the individual Christian (and the individual is not an institution), we mean the congregation is sufficient to evangelize the world.

It requires but little investigation of the Bible to learn that the churches did accomplish what God meant for them to do. If so, these churches of necessity were sufficient for this task. I Thess. 1:3-8 relates how the church at Thessalonica had “sounded forth the word of the Lord.” Phil. 1:3-5 states that the Philippian church had “fellowship in furtherance of the gospel” by supporting Paul. They sent once and again to his need (Phil. 4:14-20). Acts 11:22 declares that the Jerusalem church sent forth Barnabas. We know the churches can do these things because churches did do these things. Someone has said that what has been done can be done. In this instance, verily it is true. Within about thirty years after the founding of the church, the apostle Paul said the gospel had been preached to every creature under heaven (Col. 1:23). The organization that God provided was efficient in the New Testament times. If so, the same organization will work now.

We believe the church has been restored to its pristine order. If so, the same organization that the church in the scriptures had is present today. If that organization was sufficient then, it is sufficient now. Brethren never began seeking to build another organization for evangelistic work until they lost faith in sufficiency of that organization the Lord provided. It matters not how loud one may shout that he believes that the church is sufficient, so long as he erects another organization to do the work assigned to the church. His practice counterbalances and neutralizes what he says. He is not practicing what he is preaching. The brethren never built a missionary society until they lost faith in the sufficiency of the church to preach the gospel. Brethren likewise never would have built the existing benevolent societies had they maintained their faith in the sufficiencv of God’s church in benevolence.

The missionary society devotees simply asserted that the congregation could not get the tremendous task of taking the gospel into the entire world accomplished. They believed the congregations had failed. Pardee Butler (1816-1888), a preacher who spent much of his time working in Kansas, and who always was a society man said “It is perfectly apparent that to harmonize these elements-often opposite and conflicting-thus brought together in one body was no easy task, but we had more than this to do; we were also to harmonize the fierce antagonisms growing out of our early contests, and then to make these brethren who had been heretofore averse to any combination whatever for religious work other than that of a single congregation-to make them feel the absolute necessity of united action and cooperation. This was indeed a task most difficult.” Personal Recollections of Pardee Butler, pp. 260, 261. You note that he says there were some brethren who were averse to any religious work other than that of a single congregation. But he does not undertake to find such a work greater than that of a single congregation being done in the Bible. His search would have been futile. Nevertheless, Brother Butler felt these united actions and cooperations were an “absolute necessity.” So also do some brethren today feel such united action to be an “absolute necessity,” though obviously they would defend it on the basis that it is only an expedient.

Having lost faith in the sufficiency of the congregation (God’s organizational provision) to accomplish the evangelistic tasks, men set about to supplement that which was lacking in God’s provisions. They set in motion the attitude that eventuated in the establishment of the American Christian Missionary Society, an institution that by its very existence stands as a monument to the loss of faith by brethren in the sufficiency of God’s plan. Seemingly it never occurred to these brethren that the lack of work being done might be caused by their lack of zeal and work in activating God’s plan. Thev exonerated themselves of all guilt. The failure must be God’s. We are guiltless, so they reasoned. God having failed, arrogant men then undertook to succeed where God had been unable to succeed. They could provide that which God either could not or would not provide-i.e., an adequate organization. But one can no more add to the organization of the church without impunity than can one add to the Bible or the worship of the church without guilt.

Next month we want to see something of the establishment of this evangelistic crutch known in history as the American Christian Missionary Society, and the arguments by which brethren would defend it.

Truth Magazine IV:12, pp. 5-7
September 1960

Preacher And Hearer Equally Responsible

Robert A. Farish, Summerville, Georgia

Much has been written about the responsibility of the preacher. Some have written thoughtfully; others have indulged in irresponsible prattle. Often people feel fully competent to tell a preacher what and how to preach when they themselves might not be able to tell a sinner what to do to be saved. The responsibilities of the preacher, both real and imagined, has long been a favorite subject with both the informed and the uninformed—with the latter generally being the more loquacious. Suggestions or criticisms based on study and experience in preaching is an entirely different thing from airing the petulant views spawned in ignorance, inexperience, or cowardice.

That the responsibility of preaching the Word is great, is evident from even a casual consideration of a few passages. “Be not many of you teachers, my brethren, knowing that we shall receive heavier judgment.’ (Jas. 3:1) The anathema of God is pronounced upon any who change the gospel. (Gal. 1:8) The Apostles were approved of God to be entrusted with the gospel, and Paul states that he so spake—that is, as one approved of God. (I Thess. 2:4) How does a God-approved speaker speak? “Not as pleasing men, but God who proveth our hearts.’ The apostles’ responsibility was to please God in preaching. A method of approach pleasing to men is considered by many to be a paramount responsibility of the preacher. They would require him to give much study and preparation to the method of approach, with little concern’ as to whether or not his “approachers’ are “shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace.’

Responsibility To Hear

The preacher, however, is not alone in the matter of responsibility; the hearer also is equally responsible. Reluctance on the part of the hearer to accept responsibility is wide spread. We had rather read about another man’s duties than to face our own. But there is no way to avoid the fearful consequences of ignoring accountability as a hearer. No one can say, “I will avoid hearing the gospel, and thus not have a hearer’s responsibility.” Christ said, “If any man has ears to hear, let him hear.” (Mark 4:23) This includes every being with faculties capable of receiving a communication intelligently. Not only is it required that you hear, but in addition you must “take heed what you hear’. (verse 24)

The proper attitude must be maintained toward the Word. Upon discovering that your attitude is not right, you must cultivate an attitude that God will approve. Too little attention has been given to shaping our attitude. Those who “receive not the love of the truth’ will be sent “a working of error that they should believe a lie, that they all might be judged who believe not the truth.’ (II Thess. 2:10-12) Paul thanked God that the Thessalonians had accepted the “word of the message as the word of God’ and “not as the word of man’. (I Thess. 2:13) There is to be recognized a vital difference between the words of God and the words of men. While it may be allowable (or even necessary at times) to ‘apologize for the words of some men, it is inexcusable for any one ever to apologize for the word of God.

Hear Discerningly

If the hearer entertains the correct attitude toward he truth, he will re-act properly when he comes into possession of the truth, The Bereans were more noble than those in Thessalonica. They manifested their nobility in their readiness and carefulness as hearers. While they were open for the truth, yet they were careful. They examined the scriptures to determine if the things taught by Paul were so. Too often today, in contrast to that attitude, hearers consult their prejudices, whims, fancies—allowing such to be the standard by which they accept or reject the things heard.

“Be not carried away by divers and strange teachings.’ (Heb. 13:9) No innovation could have occurred had hearers been more concerned with this warning of the Holy Spirit and less enraptured with the “man-pleasing approach of teachers of divers and strange doctrines. It would be well to scrutinize carefully the doctrine which is taught, even at the expense of missing some thrilling details of the sheep’s skin disguise. The content of the sermon must be the chief concern if one is to hear discerningly. He must not allow the drapery of the preacher’s manner to weigh too heavily with him. Errorists can use just as smooth and fair speech as can true gospel preachers; they can pray just as long and fervent prayers (and sometimes longer). The sincere are pious; but they do not display their piety. The discerning hearer will always give an extra careful study of the teachings of those who are “over-much’ pious.

That the truth of a proposition cannot be determined by a consideration of the manner of the one preaching it is evident from Paul’s statement, ‘For they that are such serve not our Lord Christ, but their own belly, and by their smooth and fair speech they beguile the hearts of the innocent.’ (Rom. 16:18) “Beloved, believe not every spirit, but prove the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets are gone out into the’ world.’ (I John 4:1)

Hearing Plus Doing

Hearing unaccompanied by doing is profitless. The one who hears, but fails to do, is deluded (Jas. 1:22-25). The wise man is the one who hears and does, while the fool is one who stops at hearing. “Every one therefore that heareth these words of mine, and doeth them, shall be likened unto a wise man and every one that heareth these words of mine and doeth them not shall be likened unto a foolish man.’ (Matt. 7:24-26)

Itching Ears

Hearers can always find teachers who will teach as the hearer demands. As long as hearers allow itching ears to determine what they will hear, there will be teachers willing to be used as tools to tickle their itching ears. “Having itching ears, they will heap to themselves teachers after their own lusts; and will turn away their ears from the truth, and turn aside unto fables.’ (II Tim. 4:3,4) A great need exists for hearers who are aware of their responsibilities as such, and strive to measure up to God’s standard of approved hearers.

Let the Church Be the Church

Ron Halbrook

God’s eternal plan of salvation is summed up in Christ and the church. “All spiritual blessings” are “in Christ,” who is “the head over all things to the church, which is his body, the fulness of him that filleth all in all” (Eph. 1:3, 22-23). This is “according to the eternal purpose” which God “purposed in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Eph. 3:11). All men must be members of the universal church to be saved. Jews and Gentiles are reconciled “unto God in one body by the cross” (Eph. 2:16). The universal church has no earthly headquarters or other institutional organization on earth with officials, a treasury, and assigned missions. It simply refers to our spiritual fellowship with Christ as our Savior and head, nothing more, nothing less.

Christians must be active, faithful members of the local church. The first thing we read about the first Christians is this: “And they continued in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, in breaking of bread, and in prayers” (Acts 2:42). When the newly converted Saul came to Jerusalem, immediately “he assayed to join himself to the disciples” (Acts 9:26). The local church has its own organization to do its own work: elders to oversee, deacons to serve, and all members to participate (Phil. 1:1).

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Personal Evangelism: “Door-Knocking” in Your Neighborhood

David Halbook

It’s easy to string together a lengthy list of reasons why not to go door-to-door, in some form of evangelistic effort. But, we could also list reasons why most of the  lost who hear us preach publicly, who read newspaper articles we publish, who  receive tracts we offer, etc. will not be receptive to our efforts. Instead of abandoning these efforts to teach, we usually try to adjust our efforts in these areas in a way that will maximize the potential for good, then we maximize our efforts in those areas, and leave the rest to God (Isa. 55:11). All of us would probably admit that “door-knocking” is not the most productive means of evangelism. Talking with one’s friends, relatives, work associates, etc. (those with whom one has already established a relationship of some kind) is undoubtedly a more fruitful field than door-to-door work. However, door-to-door work is just another, among several, ways to reach out to the community with the gospel. Too many of us seem content to limit all of our preaching to within the walls of the church building and then wonder why we are not reaching the lost in our neighborhoods. If preaching to ourselves is not effectively reaching the community, perhaps you might consider some alternative approaches, including door-to-door evangelism.

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Teaching Those We Already Know—Keypoints In Getting Started

Dempsey Collins

1. Seek a Common Foundation.

In 1 Corinthians 9:19-23, we see the importance of beginning our study with a common foundation. Paul tells us he “became all things to all men that I may by all means save some.” Notice that Paul never expected to win all men but he did expect to win “more” by “becoming all things to all men.”

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Teaching With Technology

John R. Gentry

And Jesus said unto them, “Go ye therefore, into all the world, and preach the gospel to the whole creation. And make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them into the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit: teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I commanded you. . . .” “He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved: but he that disbelieveth shall be condemned.” “Thus it is written, that the Christ should suffer and rise again from the dead the third day; and the repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name unto all the nations, beginning from Jerusalem” (Matt. 28:19–20; Mark 16:15–16; Luke 24:46–47, ASV).

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