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Posts Tagged ‘disciple’

by Jim Gordon

Is it our job as Christians to convert the unsaved? Are we to force our views and beliefs on others so that they might come to God? My answer would be no.

We are to follow Christ and love others. We are to let the Holy Spirit convict and lead people to the Father.

GoodNews

We cannot convert others. We cannot make them come to Christ by forcing our views and beliefs on them. Only the Holy Spirit can convict the world of sin and lead them to repentance.

So often we are taught we need to use every opportunity to preach salvation to everyone we meet. We end up using sneaky methods to force conversations trying to convert others. We are told their blood with be on our hands if we do not tell them about Christ. I feel loving others with ulterior motives is wrong and does more harm than good.

Jesus said to love God and love others. Apart from that we have nothing more to do than to be available to Him and allow the Spirit to work and love through us. If we are talking with someone or enjoying their company, there is no need to force the topic into trying to convert them. If the Spirit so chooses to use us, we are to be available but we are not to force the issue.

We are called to make disciples, but disciples would be those who already have a relationship with Christ. The dictionary describes a disciple as ‘a professed follower of Christ’. We are to be there to encourage and build one another up to grow into maturity in Christ.

The good news is that God loves us. He has provided freedom from the effects of sin and has restored fellowship between God and his creation. By being judgmental, pointing fingers, threatening and using other means to force others to accept Christ, we end up driving people away rather than draw them by love.

GodIsLove

When we show the love of God to others and accept them as they are, people will be drawn to Christ easier than through condemning and threatening ways. This does not mean we have to agree with everyone or say you can live anyway you want with no consequences. Yet we can show the love of Christ to non-believers and accept them without expecting them to change and start acting like we think they should. God accepted us as we were before we came to Him and we should do the same. If there is any changing that needs to be done, that will be between God and the individual through the guidance of the Spirit.

In love, share the good news to those you meet when led by the Spirit. Encourage and make disciples of those who know Christ. Stop trying to force salvation on non-believers through ‘holier than thou’ attitudes, guilt and condemnation. Love is the answer, and God is love.

 

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James 2:18 You have faith and I have works; show me your faith without the works, and I will show you my faith by my works…..

I have always read this verse with the thought of works being things I do to earn what God has given me, salvation. Maybe not earn, but pay back for what God has done. After thinking a little about this, I think that what is being said isn’t paying God back by doing good things. Our works are a result of our love for Christ and what He did for us. Our works are our actions that we do day by day. Our actions are a result of spending time with Christ and learning from Him.

We need to truly be His disciples. A disciple is one who spends time with the Teacher, listens to His every word, watches how He acts, spends all his time with the Teacher, eating, sleeping, talking, traveling, learning, just like the disciples of Jesus. It is then that our actions will mimic those of Christ. The Bible says we can be no better than our teacher, but when Christ is our Teacher, we have the best.

When our actions are the same as His, people will no longer see us but they will see Jesus. Our actions, or works, then show the love of God to the world. Our ‘good’ works as far as we normally think of works, and our words do not mean a lot, but our actions speak louder than either.

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