Summary: A sermon on essentials to reaching the unchurched.
Being The Church For The Unchurched
For the past several weeks off an on, we have studied the Unchurched. We have looked at their attitudes about religion, about God, about Christians, about the Bible.......about church.
The statistics are staggering. It should be enough to burden our heart. We know now that there are Stats: 160 Million Unchurched in USA. The question is now what do we do about it. To know that there are needs, to really feel compassion towards the lost, and unchurched is to try and do something about it !
The Five Faith Stages
U5: Antagonistic and hostile to the Gospel 5%
U4: Resistant, but not antagonistic (“So what…”) 21%
U3: Neutral, no signs of interest, yet perhaps open to discussion 36%
U2: Receptive to learning more about the Gospel 27%
U1: Highly Responsive to hearing and believing the Gospel 11 %
I want The Rock to be the Church For The Unchurched. I want them to know that we care.......
Stirring worship music won’t attract them because worship isn’t even on their radar screen. More comfortable pews cannot compete with the easy chair or the bed that already serve the unchurched person well. Church events cannot effectively compete with what the world has to offer. The only thing the Church can provide that no one else has is a life-changing, practical encounter – and on-going relationship – with the living God and with people transformed by similar encounters. Until such a connection is made, focusing on features, programs and benefits other than such a life-shaping encounter is more likely to lose ground than to gain it.”
Saying: The world will not care how much we know until they know how much we care !
I want people to know that they are welcome here regardless of what kind of mess their lives are in......regardless of their past.........their present situation. I want them to know that we are a people of "unconditional love" ! I want us to pray........I would like for each of you to pray before or when or both before you come through the doors on Sun. morning that this church will be a place of welcome relief to the lost, and unchurched who might come !
We don’t have to compromise the message.......we don’t have to dumb down our convictions to do that.......we simply need to love the lost as Christ did.
Illust. Jackie Hyles
The Lord has laid on my heart what I believe to be some essentials if we are to reach the lost, and unchurched !
I. We Need To Locate The Unchurched !
Everyday they pass me by I can see it in their eye Empty people filled with care Headed who knows where On they go through private pain Living fear to fear Laughter hides the silent cries Only Jesus hears Chorus: People need the Lord People need the Lord At the end of broken dreams He¡̅s the open door People need the Lord People need the Lord When will we realize People need the Lord We are called to take His light To a world where wrong seems right What could be too great a cost For sharing life with one who¡̅s lost Through His love our hearts can feel All the grief they bear They must hear the words of life Only we can share -Steve Green
Being that there are 160 million, this shouldn’t be a problem. If stats prove true, over 50 % of the people in our area are unchurched. They never set foot inside the church except on special occassions.
Some of these people are hostile........some are hurt. But all need to be reached. Some of the unchurched are antagonistic........some are neutral........some are open.......some are on the verge of making a committment......but few of them will unless we reach out to them !
Listen to these powerful verses.....Romans 10:13-14
For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed ? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard ? and how shall they hear without a preacher ?
We know some of the 160 million........the 50 % that do not attend church. They are our family member........neighbors.........friends.......acquaintances......co-workers...........classmates.
They are lost, they are unchurched. We need to reach them.
Visualize who they are........identify them. See their needs.
II. We Need To Learn The Unchurched.
A man was converted and baptized at the age of twenty-seven. When he was thirty-one years of age he taught a class of Intermediate boys in Sunday school. At that time he had never enrolled in Training Union. It had not occurred to him that he could win a lost soul or that he was even obligated to win others. He did not even know who the lost in his class were. One day a class member, a fine boy fourteen years of age, was killed by lightning. In the home just a few minutes before the funeral the teacher asked the father of the boy, "Are you a Christian?" The father answered: "Not a very good one. I was a member of a church before moving here six years ago, but haven’t joined a church here." Then the teacher asked, "Was your boy a Christian?" The question startled the father and he answered, "I don’t know. Do you know?" The teacher was startled, too, and answered, "No, I do not."