Summary: A sermon on evangelism and looking at the world the way the apostles in Acts saw it.
-how many of you were in NewSong this morning? We talked about “a Churchy View”, one that entices us to go out into the world and share Jesus with others.
-this song isn’t probably everyone’s style of music, but the lyrics were just too right on so I had to use it. Stephen will like it.
[PLAY “SEND ME” BY LECRAE]
-the second verse there is just too perfect. Saying that America isn’t quite as Christian as we think. We say we are, but is that true? Or are we just saying it because it’s the right answer? Do you think the people you go to school with actually know who Christ is?
-in the song he mentioned the Great Commission. For those that don’t know it, here it is:
**Matt. 28:19-20 -> 19”So go and make followers of all people in the world. Baptize them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. 20Teach them to obey everything that I have taught you, and I will be with you always, even until the end of this age.” (NCV)
-so how do we end up being more like the disciples in Acts?
1. WE NEED THE HOLY SPIRIT
-we have to realize that we are not alone. God is always with us through His Holy Spirit.
-this was the very last thing Jesus said before He left earth.
**Acts. 1:8 -> 8But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. And you will be my witnesses, telling people about me everywhere—in Jerusalem, throughout Judea, in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” (NLT)
-first the Holy Spirit came (we talked about that with Pentecost months ago), then the disciples received power to go everywhere telling people about Jesus.
-the list of places there is like city, state, country and world. It’s like if Jesus said to you to tell people everywhere—in Fishers, throughout Indiana, in the United States, and to the ends of the earth.
-we need God’s strength to do this. Do you pray for your friends, family, etc. that they will know Jesus? I have your commitment cards you signed that you would.
-I have a verse on my computer reminding me that prayer works. We just need to believe it.
**Mark 11:24 -> 24For this reason I tell you: when you pray and ask for something, believe that you have received it, and you will be given whatever you ask for. (GNT)
-do you pray believing that what you pray for will happen?
-I know it’s hard. I’ve prayed for people so many times that it starts to be just words, but I can’t give up, I have to start with prayer.
-I need God’s power to do what I do, that’s just how it is.
-so do you. If you want to do God’s work, maybe it’s a good idea to involve God.
-we’re supposed to be praying about everything!
**Phil. 4:6-7 -> 6Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. 7Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life. (MSG)
-we need His Holy Spirit in us, helping us, giving us strength to share His Word.
-and the world needs His Word because it’s a lot like the world when Jesus came.
2. THE WORLD KNOWS RELIGION, NOT GOD
-look at the stories of Jesus talking to the Pharisees, the Sadducees, the Fumanchuisees.
-they didn’t understand. They knew the rules, they understood there was an organized religion, but they didn’t know God.
-even the religious leaders didn’t understand, that why Jesus was so short with them so often. On one occasion they tried to trick Jesus and asked a question about their view of heaven, and this is what He said.
**Matt. 22:29 -> 29Jesus answered, “You’re off base on two counts: You don’t know your Bibles, and you don’t know how God works. (MSG)
-it’s kind of sad when your pastor has to be told they don’t know their Bibles and they don’t know how God works!
-but that’s our world. They know there’s a God. They know that going to church is good for them, just not too often. But do they actually know God? Who He is? What He’s really like?
-look at the people when the apostles were sharing in Acts. The people knew religion.
-the people that Jesus spent time with are the Jews. The people the Christians are living with and talking to in the book of Acts are Jews. Jesus is the Son of the God who called the Jews His chosen people. But they didn’t recognize Him as God.