Summary: There is a price to pay to be obedient to Jesus’ command to evangelize.
The Price of Evangelization
A. James Dobson’s experience at the public school system from 1960-1963
1. At the final year, he had to say goodbye to 25 to 30 teary-eyed kids.
2. One young lady whom he said goodbye to in 1963 called him in 1975.
3. Julie had grown up.
4. James remembered her as a seventh grader with a crisis of confidence in herself.
5. Her Latin heritage embarrassed her and she was overweight.
6. She had only one friend who had moved away the following year.
7. She and Dr. Dobson talked on the phone about the good ole days.
8. “Where do you go to church?”
9. He told her, and she asked if she could visit.
10. He told her she could, and the next week she came.
11. In the coming months, she became a vibrant Christian.
12. A few months after her initial visit, Dobson asked her, “Julie, I want to ask you a question. Will you tell me why you went to so much trouble to obtain my unlisted number and call me last fall…?”
13. “Because when I was a seventh-grade student in junior high school, you were the only person in my life who acted like you respected and believed in me…and I wanted to know your God.”
B. One of England’s greatest preachers, W. E. Sangster, in Let Me Command, said, “The easiest way to embarrass a congregation of twentieth century Christians is to ask them two simple questions. ‘When is the last time you personally led another person to Jesus Christ?’ and ‘When is the last time you tried?’”
C. What is the price of evangelization?
1. How far are we willing to go?
2. Are we willing to sacrifice our time, time that could be spent doing what we want to do.
3. It is a most important task of the Christian life, but something that not many Christians do.
4. We must nurture our relationship with Christ and grow spiritually, but we must share, and that helps us to grow.
D. Christ’s means of evangelization was not normally mass evangelization.
1. For the most part, it was a one on one basis.
2. He did that in this purposeful encounter with the woman at the well.
3. Jesus didn’t spend a great deal of time ministering to the religious leaders of his day.
4. He ministered to the downcast, outcast, those looked down upon by society, and ones who had physical, mental and spiritual needs.
5. He would later pay a great price for their souls.
THE PRICE OF AVAILABILITY
A. Jesus was available to the Samaritan woman.
1. “Now he had to go through Samaria.”
2. He was not physically forced, threatened with bodily harm, or risked being turned into the authorities.
3. He was forced by an inner compulsion of love for those who didn’t know him.
4. The compulsion forced him to obey the Father’s will.
5. Jesus had a divine appointment.
6. He did it to make himself available to the work of God.
B. The geography of the land did not force him to go this way.
1. Jews didn’t make a habit of going through Samaria.
2. When the Assyrians conquered the northern kingdom of Israel in 722 B. C., they took most of the inhabitants and placed them throughout the Mesopotamia region.
3. Those inhabitants were relocated in Israel.
4. The intermarriage between the Jews and the foreigners produced the Samaritans.
5. They were a mixed race hated by devout Jews.
6. Samaritans were not of pure stock, and there was mutual hatred between the groups.
C. Jesus made himself available to such a person.
1. There were many barriers that could have kept Jesus away.
2. Racial, as a general rule Jews did not even speak to Samaritans.
3. Verse 9, “The woman was surprised (that Jesus spoke to her), for Jews refuse to have anything to do with Samaritans. She said to Jesus, ‘You are a Jew, and I am a Samaritan woman. Why are you asking me for a drink?’”
4. Cultural, Jesus was a rabbi, and no respectable rabbi would talk to a woman in public.
5. The disciples’ surprise when they return and see Jesus talking to her, “Just then his disciples returned and were surprised to find him (Jesus) talking with a woman.”
6. Moral, Jesus as the holy and pure Son of God talking to an immoral woman.
7. Jesus describes her, “The fact is, you have had five husbands, and the man you now have is not your husband.”
8. Physical, He was tired and hungry as he stopped at the well.
9. “Jacob’s well was here, and Jesus, tired as he was from the journey, sat down by the well.”