Start with Evangelism Video 5 min 2 sec
There is a phrase that I want you to remember. It is extremely important that you do not forget this simple four word sentence.
Here it is, don’t forget, “Each one reach one.”
One of my friends as a teenager was a guy by the name of Dave Olson.
Dave’s dad was a preacher and he had a sister named Lori who was real cute and an older brother who had fallen away from the Lord at that time.
Dave was also experiencing a time of rebellion in his own life. His brother had drawn him into a world of alcohol, drugs and rebellion against God and their parents.
His parents were taking some time off from the ministry and began to attend the church we were attending at that time.
As the months went on Dave and I began to form a friendship.
There were times in our friendship when I would try my best to get Dave to serve God and there were times when Dave would try his best to get me to not serve God.
I think I have shared this before, but as a teenager I struggled in my walk with God. I did a lot of things that I am not proud of nor would I suggest.
Half way through my senior year in high school God really got a hold of me and I made a decision to follow Him and do whatever He wanted me to do.
It’s funny to me, but I thought God wanted me to be a policeman, I had already been accepted to the Police Science School at Indian Hills Community College in Ottumwa, but God had different plans for me and I ended up at Open Bible College in Des Moines, studying to be a pastor.
At the age of 17 my life of rebellion to God and the church and my parents ended and so did my actions of conforming to Dave’s lifestyle.
I was going to chase after God’s plan for my life and do what He was calling me to do.
I also made a decision that I was not going to let Dave miss God’s plan for his life; I believed then and believe now that God has a plan for everyone’s life.
For Dave it was a plan that did not include alcohol and drugs; a plan that did not include rebellion. It was a plan that God had set in motion long ago for his life.
I was going to invest time and effort into my friend’s life, because I did not want my friend to go to hell and the way he was living his life; that could have happened any time.
Dave was a preacher’s kid; he knew about salvation, he knew about the Word of God, he was really knowledgeable when it came to Scripture. But he had made a decision to live in rebellion to all the Truth he knew.
In the spring of 1983 a group of people visited our church.
They were from the Teen Challenge of Iowa. Their leader at that time was a man by the name of Carol Huston.
I made sure that Dave was in that evening service. I remember it like it was yesterday.
Dave sat through the whole service and you could see that the Holy Spirit was working on him. He watched and listened with determination as each person gave their testimony of how God rescued them from drug addiction, alcoholism, rebellion and many other things.
They shared how God was able to heal their broken lives and restore what they had lost.
And at the end of the service, when Carol Huston got up to give the alter call, Dave Olson was the first hand up and Dave Olson was the first person at the alter.
He gave his heart to God, sought forgiveness of his sins, turned his life over to Christ, enrolled into Teen Challenge and a few weeks later left Ottumwa and went to the Teen Challenge center in Colfax, Iowa.
He was a changed man.
He graduated Teen Challenge, became a staff member there, they promoted him to the director of Teen Challenge of Iowa a few years later and then after a couple more years, Dave accepted the pastorate of an Assembly of God Church in Ankeny, Iowa.
The last time I talked to Dave his church was running about 800 people.
Why is this story important?
It is important because someone took the time to reach someone else for the kingdom of God and those efforts have made a lasting difference in the Kingdom of God.
Each one reach one.
Father, open my eyes to see Your Word.
Open my ears to hear.
Open my mind to understand.
And open my heart so I may receive Your Word today.
Here is a truth that you can bank on.
People in our society today are searching for something. And many of them don’t know what they are searching for.
People want answers today.
We live in a world with economic problems, nations fighting against nations, terrorist threats, earth quakes, volcanoes erupting, nature itself seems to be in uproar, and all sorts of other bad things are happening and you can be sure that people are searching for answers and solutions.
Where are they looking for the answers to their questions and for their solutions?
They are looking at the news media, they are looking at the politicians, they are looking at things that bring them pleasure like more money or achievements, they are looking at alcohol, drugs, the internet, chat rooms, false religions, new age philosophies, horoscopes, knowledge, and science.
They are looking and they are listening to whoever is speaking.
Newsweek magazine reports that interest in spiritual things can be found everywhere and more Americans are looking for personal, ecstatic experiences of God.
It seems that many people are looking for the answers to life and they are looking for God but they are not looking in the right places, they are not looking to the One who created life for the answers and the solutions.
Why aren’t they looking to God for their answers?
Maybe it is because we as Christians are not telling them. It seems that there is a lack of motivation in the church today to share the Good News with the lost.
Can you remember the last time you told someone how great God is?
Can you remember the last time you told someone that God loves them?
Can you remember the last time you told someone that Jesus died for their sins?
Can you remember the last time you told someone outside of the church the good things God has done?
The average Christian in America doesn’t share their faith with others. According to the Barna Group, in 2003 just over half of all born again Christians shared their faith with someone else.
The question that begs to be answered is what would happen if each one of us would reach one each of those in our world who are searching for answers?
Those who need Jesus?
Those who need to reached and pulled out of the miry clay and need to have their feet placed on the Rock?
What would our church look like?
What would the church in America look like?
What would the world look like?
Each one reach one.
Play the Lost Video. 1 min 39 sec.
In Jeremiah 1:7 God the Father gives the prophet his marching orders.
Read Jeremiah 1:4-10 X3
Then the word of the LORD came to me, saying: “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you; Before you were born I sanctified you; I ordained you a prophet to the nations.” Then said I: “Ah, Lord GOD! Behold, I cannot speak, for I am a youth.”
But the LORD said to me: “Do not say, ‘I am a youth,’ For you shall go to all to whom I send you, And whatever I command you, you shall speak. Do not be afraid of their faces, For I am with you to deliver you,” says the LORD.
Then the LORD put forth His hand and touched my mouth, and the LORD said to me: “Behold, I have put My words in your mouth. See, I have this day set you over the nations and over the kingdoms, To root out and to pull down, To destroy and to throw down, To build and to plant.”
An awesome portion of Scripture that shows us a few things of importance, It shows how God knows us before we were born. It shows how God calls us unto salvation before we were born. It shows how God calls us to share the Good News before we were born.
Jeremiah did not argue the fact that God knew him before he was born. God knew him before he was conceived. He was not pro-choice. He knew that life begins at conception and that God knows us before the act of conception happens.
Jeremiah did not argue the fact that God had set him apart as a child of God. He knew that he was an Israelite. He knew that he was a part of God’s chosen nation.
The part that Jeremiah argued was the part about him telling others about the things of God. That is where he disagreed with God.
His contention was that he was too young and he did not know how to talk in front of people which was the same argument that Moses used and look how far that got him.
Jeremiah did not feel worthy to tell others about God.
Jeremiah did not feel that he had enough knowledge to tell others.
Jeremiah was afraid of others might say or do to him.
Does any of this sound familiar?
These are some of the same excuses that people use today.
People keep coming up with all these excuses and they fail to reach others with the Good News that God loves them. They fail to reach people with the Good News that He has a plan for them. They fail to tell others that Jesus died for them so they could be reunited with the Father and have the guarantee of eternal life in heaven. They fail to tell of all His blessings and promises.
They fail to reach one.
What has changed in regards to God and His plans for us since the time of Jeremiah?
Nothing has changed.
Does God still know us before we conceived and before we are born? Yes, He does. That is why I believe so fervently against abortion.
Has God set us apart as His children? Yes, He has. That is why Jesus came to the earth and died on the cross and rose again.
He has sanctified us and set us apart. He has offered us salvation and He has called us to do great things for His kingdom.
Has God Called us? Yes. When God calls us, He first calls us to salvation. Once we have accepted His salvation He calls us to discipleship which is to grow closer to the Father. As we are growing closer to the Father, God calls us to ministry.
You may not be called to be a pastor, a missionary, a children’s church teacher, an evangelist or whatever, but we are all called to tell others about the Good News of Jesus Christ.
We are all called to reach one. Everyone who is a part of the family of God is supposed to tell others about the Good News and we are all called to disciple those who do not know Christ.
187 million people in this world do not attend church so the chances of you knowing someone who needs Jesus are pretty good.
And let me just add something here, just because a person goes to church does not mean that they have accepted Jesus Christ as their Savior.
There are a lot of people who go to church but who are not living for God. I know because I tried it once.
There are people in our lives who need to be reached.
There are people in our lives who need the Lord.
There are people in our lives who need to turn their lives around.
I said in my annual report that I believe 2010 is going to be the year of untold potential for PFC. That untold potential that I talked about begins with this, Each one of us reaching one person each with this simple message, God loves you and He can change your life, do you want to know how?
If we as believers and we as a church in Bismarck, ND are going to reach our potential then we need to start reaching people.
We have been commanded to in Matthew 28:19; Mark 16:15; 2 Timothy 2:8; Ezekiel 3:18; Matthew 9:35-38; and John 4:35 just to name a few.
If each one of us would reach just one person for Jesus Christ before the end of this year, our church would double in size.
This is not an unreasonable dream. In fact it is very attainable.
We have everything we need to see this happen. We have the knowledge of the Word of God. We have the power of the Holy Spirit. We have the support of the family of God. The truth is on our side. God is with us. We can do this.
Just think for a moment, the potential that lies ahead if each one reaches one.
Think of the spiritual growth.
We grow spiritually when we walk in our calling. We grow in knowledge, in love, in spirit, in unity.
Think of the physical growth.
The kingdom of God grows; more people have the promise of eternal life.
The church grows; when the church grows more can be done, more can be reached. When the church grows more churches can be planted. When the church grows the offerings are bigger and more can be done and more can be reached through the faithfulness of giving.
The possibilities are endless for the church if each one of us would reach just one who need Jesus.
How many people do you know that need to be reached for Jesus? 5, 10, 20, 50? How many of them do you think you can reach?
I am challenging you to only reach one, if you want to reach more then go for it!
On you sheet I want you to write at least one name, the name of the one person you are going to invest the most time in so that they can be reached for Christ.