Summary: From our text, let’s think about how to win some people to Christ. 1- Speak effectively 2- Give people time 3- Discern those with faith
INTRO.- ILL.- A conversation took place between a rabbi, a preacher and a priest. They talked about how each of them celebrated Christmas. The preacher and priest explained that they both gave thanks to God for Christ and all they blessings they received because of Christmas.
"We do it a little differently," the rabbi said. "On Christmas morning my entire family goes to my brother’s department store. We look at all the empty shelves, and then we all join hands and sing, ’What a friend we have in Jesus.’"
This is the time of the year for retail stores to make some money. I heard that "black Friday" saw more shoppers out than ever across the US, but they didn’t buy as much merchandise as last year. So this makes selling a bit harder for the retailers. Win some, lose some. Here’s a few "black Friday" stories I found.
ILL.- Someone said: My favorite (I use this term loosely) ’Black Friday’ incident happened about two years ago. I was working at Express (the women’s clothing store) as I was home from school on holiday break and had enjoyed working there over the summer. It was about 3 in the afternoon and, as always, a few articles of clothing had run out. When I informed a shopper that we did not have any more of a certain top left--I had checked about 5 times for other shoppers in that hour alone--the woman jumped over the counter, grabbed me by the collar, and smacked me across the face.
Some people will do almost anything on "black Friday."
ILL.- Another said: We did the full thing on black Friday thing last year, researching, planning and getting up at 4 am. What we found was those door-buster deals at places like Best Buy, don’t even bother.
In order to get them you had to be one of the first 3-4 in line. We talked to one of the sales people at Best Buy later in the afternoon. He said that the big deal LCD monitor that was advertised only had something like 15 per store and there was a group of young guys who camped out the day before who got them all. They each grabbed the limit of 5 each. So unless your willing to sleep on a sidewalk overnight in 20 degree weather your probably not going to get some of the hot items.
There’s no item HOT ENOUGH to make me sleep on a sidewalk all night long! And certainly not in cold weather.
ILL.- Best Buy drew more than a thousand shoppers to West Paterson, N.J. and to its Manhattan store for early morning bargains on Sony laptop computers, cut to $399.99 from $749.99, and GPS devices from TomTom for $119.99, from the normal $249.99, according to store managers.
"If they were selling it, we were buying it," Tom Shea, 23, said as he surveyed his purchases at a midtown Manhattan Best Buy store. He said he, some friends and a cousin were the first through the doors when the store opened at 4 a.m.
IF THEY WERE SELLING IT, WE WERE BUYING IT. Crazy!
Shea, of Brooklyn, and two friends spent a total of about $2,500 on two laptop computers, an Xbox game console, a vacuum and several other items. They estimated they had saved about $1,500 — after waiting for 35 hours outside the Fifth Avenue store to make sure they were first in line, he said.
ILL.- Someone else said: A man in line described an experience he had at a CIRCUIT CITY that was just up the road. Apparently some early bird shoppers were using shopping carts to block aisles in the store, and some even abandoned their carts some 10 feet inside the store entrance, so that other shoppers wouldn’t get ahead of them in the mad rush for merchandise.
CAN YOU BELIEVE THESE STORIES? Yep and there are even more. Nevertheless, some retailers win some and some lose some. They win some customers and lose others.
AND SO WHEN IT COMES TO EVANGELIZING PEOPLE FOR CHRIST! We win some and lose some.
Our text tells about Paul and Barnabas preaching about Christ and how they won some, but lost others.
1At Iconium Paul and Barnabas went as usual into the Jewish synagogue. There they spoke so effectively that a great number of Jews and Gentiles believed. There’s the "win some."
4The people of the city were divided; some sided with the Jews, others with the apostles. There it is again. Win some, lose some. Of course, we are mainly interested (or should be interested) in winning people to Christ.
I Tim. 2:4-6 "God wants all men to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself as a ransom for all men."