Summary: We demonstrate our love for God and one-another by sharing our faith with others.
LOVE IN SHARING
Richard Hornbuckle was driving 2 friends across the Sunshine Skyway which spans Tampa Bay. It was 7:38 am on May 9th,1980. It had stated to rain and visibility was almost zero. What Mr. Hornbuckle did not know was that moments before he reached the bridge a freighter named SUMMIT VENTURE had slammed into the #2 South pier knocking out a large section of the bridge. Several cars had already gone over the edge when Mr Hornbuckle, seeing what had happened, hit his brakes stopping just 14 inches from the edge. A loaded greyhound bus was not as fortunate. It didn't see the signal to stop and went over the edge killing everyone on board. Millions in this world are heading for a terrible fate. It is our job to try to tell them before it is to late.
2 Kings 7:3-8 Now there were four men with leprosy at the entrance of the city gate. They said to each other, "Why stay here until we die? 4 If we say, 'We'll go into the city'--the famine is there, and we will die. And if we stay here, we will die. So let's go over to the camp of the Arameans and surrender. If they spare us, we live; if they kill us, then we die." 5 At dusk they got up and went to the camp of the Arameans. When they reached the edge of the camp, not a man was there, 6 for the Lord had caused the Arameans to hear the sound of chariots and horses and a great army, so that they said to one another, "Look, the king of Israel has hired the Hittite and Egyptian kings to attack us!" 7 So they got up and fled in the dusk and abandoned their tents and their horses and donkeys. They left the camp as it was and ran for their lives. 8 The men who had leprosy reached the edge of the camp and entered one of the tents. They ate and drank, and carried away silver, gold and clothes, and went off and hid them. They returned and entered another tent and took some things from it and hid them also.
Today we are concluding our series I love My Church. We have looked through this series at ways in which we can demonstrate love for one another through community, serving and giving. The last way that we demonstrate love is through sharing our faith with others who do not yet know Christ.
1. Condemned by our Sin
The context of this story is important. The nation of Syria had sent a huge army against the nation of Israel. The army had laid siege to the city of Samaria.
2 Kings 6:24-29 Some time later, Ben-Hadad king of Aram mobilized his entire army and marched up and laid siege to Samaria. 25 There was a great famine in the city; the siege lasted so long that a donkey's head sold for eighty shekels of silver, and a quarter of a cab of seed pods for five shekels. 26 As the king of Israel was passing by on the wall, a woman cried to him, "Help me, my lord the king!" 27 The king replied, "If the LORD does not help you, where can I get help for you? From the threshing floor? From the winepress?" 28 Then he asked her, "What's the matter?" She answered, "This woman said to me, 'Give up your son so we may eat him today, and tomorrow we'll eat my son.' 29 So we cooked my son and ate him. The next day I said to her, 'Give up your son so we may eat him,' but she had hidden him."
Because of the siege, there was no food in the city. The people were starving. Things had gotten so bad that the people were resorting to cannibalism. We see in this story that two woman had killed and eaten one of their children. When was the last time you thought to yourself, “I think I’ll cook one of my children from dinner tonight.” Things have to be very bad to resort to something like that.
If things were that bad within the city, just imagine how bad the situation was for these 4 lepers that were outside the city gate.
Lepers were outcasts. They begged for food and lived off the generosity of others. If the healthy people within the city walls were starving to death, just imagine how bad it was for these 4 men.
Without Christ in our lives, we are in bad shape. The bible says that the wages of sin is death, but do you truly believe that? Do you truly believe that without Christ you would be heading for hell? Part of sharing your faith is to first understand the need. We have to be convinced that without Christ we are eternally lost.