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  • Writer's pictureNigel Williams

Motivations in Evangelism - Why do you do it?

This article deals with our motivations in evangelism. this is a response to an article published by C H Spurgeon.

C H Spurgeon Holding a Bible
Charles H Spurgeon | What Inspires us

I came across a really good devotional by Charles H Spurgeon regarding the reasons we do the things we do in our Christian walk.

I would like you to read this, thinking about your own personal work in reaching out to people with the Gospel.

Why do you do it?

"Serve the Lord with gladness."Psalm 100:2

Delight in divine service is a token of acceptance. Those who serve God with a sad countenance, because they do what is unpleasant to them, are not serving him at all; they bring the form of homage, but the life is absent. Our God requires no slaves to grace his throne; he is the Lord of the empire of love, and would have his servants dressed in the livery of joy. The angels of God serve him with songs, not with groans; a murmur or a sigh would be a mutiny in their ranks. That obedience which is not voluntary is disobedience, for the Lord looketh at the heart, and if he seeth that we serve him from force, and not because we love him, he will reject our offering. Service coupled with cheerfulness is heart-service, and therefore true. Take away joyful willingness from the Christian, and you have removed the test of his sincerity. If a man be driven to battle, he is no patriot; but he who marches into the fray with flashing eye and beaming face, singing, "It is sweet for one's country to die," proves himself to be sincere in his patriotism. Cheerfulness is the support of our strength; in the joy of the Lord are we strong. It acts as the remover of difficulties. It is to our service what oil is to the wheels of a railway carriage. Without oil the axle soon grows hot, and accidents occur; and if there be not a holy cheerfulness to oil our wheels, our spirits will be clogged with weariness. The man who is cheerful in his service of God, proves that obedience is his element; he can sing,

"Make me to walk in thy commands,

'Tis a delightful road."

Reader, let us put this question--do you serve the Lord with gladness? Let us show to the people of the world, who think our religion to be slavery, that it is to us a delight and a joy! Let our gladness proclaim that we serve a good Master.

You can view the complete Morning and Evening devotional series on Bible Gateway (click here to view).

Apply this to your own walk in evangelism

I think this is a really good read, to look at regularly in the context of our work of making Christ known to those who are not trusting in Him for salvation. It is quite sobering.

Many people do many good works, in very many places, under the title of Christianity. But which things are the true and most pleasing in the Lord’s sight?

Here we can see how it is that God views a person and all that they do:

“But the Lord said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart.” 1 Samuel 16:7

Over many years, I have seen, week after week, Jehovah Witnesses on the street corners (I have seen these setup at the very early hours of the morning to meet the first train crowds!). Mormons knocking on doors, the Hare Krishna handing out literature. Yet every single one of their works, though they be greatly zealous, are as filthy rags in God’s sight.

This might sound cruel or unkind, but the Bible says

“But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.” Isaiah 64:6

But we can’t stop at these people groups.

“Except the Lord build the house, they labour in vain that build it: except the Lord keep the city, the watchman waketh but in vain.” Psalm 127:1.

We must make sure we are seeking to serve the Lord first. Not doing anything for the wrong reasons.

“I must go share the Gospel to encourage others to do the same..”

No. That should not be our focus. Though it is a good thing that certainly can come from our efforts.

“I must do it so people won’t go to hell…”

Again, no, it’s not first and foremost about the people we speak with.

“Go ye into all the world, and preach the Gospel to every creature.”

It’s a command and we should obey. But there are many facets to our efforts. You could, for example, go and do it because it is command. Yet, if it is without love, then what is it? See 1 Corinthians 13.

We must seek the Lord in prayer. Regularly.

Evening, and morning, and at noon, will I pray, and cry aloud: and He shall hear my voice.” Psalm 55:17

Ask God to give you the right desires in serving Him. That we would not bring this wonderful glorious message into disrepute. Beware of the flesh and it’s great tendency to lead us astray.

“…worship God in the spirit, and rejoice in Christ Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh.” Philippians 3:3

Ask God to reveal to you more and more the seriousness of the message we bring. That we might be empty of ourselves and filled by His Spirit.

Be sure there will never be a time where we think we are ever worthy and completely able to speak fully and sufficiently of His great grace toward sinners.

Then walk by faith (and not by sight) see 2 Corinthians 5:7. Trust in His promises that He is a very present help in time of need - see Psalm 46:1. Trust that, as His Word goes out it will not return void see Isaiah 55:11.

That He is “able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us” Ephesians 3:20. “Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.” 1 Corinthians 15:58.

There is great joy to be had in bringing His Word to new ears. Even if a person rejects the message He gives us a peace that passes understanding (Philippians 4:7). Proclaiming His truth does a work within us as well as the hearer. Ever more so if we “Serve the Lord with gladness.”

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1 Comment

May 06

That is great message

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