Summary: Sermon on Evangelism and growing a church from a farmers point of view.
“Waiting on the Harvest”
Evangelism: How to Grow the Church
There is a story about two men from New York City who had never been out of the city. They decided they had enough of city life and so they would head out west and try to live off the land like their ancestors did. As they arrived in the mid-west they decided they would need a mule to help them with the plowing. So they found the local general store and asked the owner if he had any mules for sale. The owner of the store told them, “No, I’m afraid not, boys.” The two men then noticed a stack of honeydew melons against the wall. They asked the storeowner, “What are those things there?” The store owner decided to have a little fun with these two city boys, and he told them, that they were mule eggs, and they were welcome to take a couple with them. He said, You just take those eggs home and wait for them to hatch, and you’ll have yourself a couple of mules. The two men from New York thanked the storeowner kindly and set two of the honeydew melons in the back of their pickup truck. As the two men were driving down the road they hit a big bump, which caused one of the melons to bounce out and bust open on the road. Looking back they saw that they had lost one of their mule eggs and they immediately stopped the truck and got out to take a look and see what had become of it. As they were getting out of the truck a long eared rabbit crossed the road, and seeing the melon busted on the ground hopped right in the middle of it and began eating the melon. As the two men came around the truck, the one exclaimed, “Hey, our mule egg has hatched! Let’s get our mule.” The two men moved toward the rabbit, but it took off hopping. The chased it this way, then that trying to corner it somehow. Finally after about what seemed like an hour of chasing that rabbit the two men gave up. They both collapsed on the ground. The one man said, “Well I guess we lost our mule.” The other man nodded grimly. Yes, but you know,” he said, “I’m not sure I wanted to plow that fast anyway.”
We all want to see Church of Christ grow, we all want to reach the lost for Christ, but often, like the two city boys, our expectations differ from reality. We try to grow the church in our own manner without the proper understanding of how God brings growth to a congregation. This morning I want to share with you the steps needed to grow Church of Christ as well as our own relationships with one another.
(Read 1 Corinthians 3:5-9)
A. Having the right kind of seed.
*I had an opportunity to help Farmer Brown pick up seed for his crop. I was amazed at how many varieties of seed there were. Some seed as most of you well know only work with certain kinds of herbicides. Each seed also differs in the yield as well as many other factors. Then the price on some of that seed was simply unbelievable.
-It is important to plant the right kind of seed to get a good harvest.
-The apostle Paul describes himself as a planter of seeds. (v6)
-What was this seed that Paul sought to plant in the lives of people?
“Pray also for me, that whenever I open my mouth, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains. Pray that I may declare it fearlessly, as I should.” (Eph. 6:19,20 NIV)
-It was the gospel, the good news that we can have our relationship restored with the creator of the universe, through the actions of Jesus Christ upon the cross.
“For God so loved the World that He gave His one and only son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.” (JN 3:16 NIV)
-We have the best seed to plant and what more, it is free.
B. Sowing the seed with Love
-in order to plant a seed you have put it in the ground.
*My girls dig into the dirt until they are covered in dirt then drop the seed in and throw a little dirt on top. My dad always taught me to poke your finger in the soil and drop the seed in and cover it up.
-too often however our method of seed planting does more harm then good
1. When we gossip or speak ill of our brother and sisters in Christ we cause those seeking the gospel to be soured on Christ, or we end up sowing the seeds of division within our church.