We will be taking a break from our daily scheduled posts this week to launch the “Faith Work 101” sermon series that can be used as a back to school series for your church, student ministry or personal devotion. This message was originally preached at Adrian United by David Morehead on 9-5-10.
Fritz Kreisler (1875-1962), the world-famous violinist, earned a fortune with his concerts and compositions, but he generously gave most of it away. So, when he discovered an exquisite violin on one of his trips, he wasn’t able to buy it. Later, having raised enough money to meet the asking price, he returned to the seller, hoping to purchase that beautiful instrument. But to his great dismay it had been sold to a collector. Kreisler made his way to the new owner’s home and offered to buy the violin. The collector said it had become his prized possession and he would not sell it. Keenly disappointed, Kreisler was about to leave when he had an idea. “Could I play the instrument once more before it is consigned to silence?” he asked. Permission was granted, and the great virtuoso filled the room with such heart-moving music that the collector’s emotions were deeply stirred. “I have no right to keep that to myself,” he exclaimed. “It’s yours, Mr. Kreisler. Take it into the world, and LET PEOPLE HEAR IT.” Our Daily Bread, February 4, 1994.
WAYS WE CAN REACH PEOPLE FOR JESUS
Luke 5:18 And, behold, men brought in a bed a man which was taken with a palsy: and they sought means to bring him in, and to lay him before him. 19. And when they could not find by what way they might bring him in because of the multitude, they went upon the housetop, and let him down through the tiling with his couch into the midst before Jesus. 20. And when he saw their faith, he said unto him, Man, thy sins are forgiven thee.
1) WE MUST CARE ABOUT PEOPLE WHO DON’T KNOW JESUS
The reason God used the four friends in Luke 5 is because they cared for the paralytic. Just like those four, our evangelistic mission starts with love.
THE POWER OF THE LITTLE THINGS
- Tell your friends you are praying for them
- Drop a thoughtful card in the mail
- Give truthful compliments about their children
- Honestly ask how they are doing
- Offer to help out when they are really stressed
- Invite them over for dinner
- Remember their important family dates
2) WE MUST BELIEVE GOD CAN REACH OUR FRIENDS & FAMILY
No one is hopeless. When the four friends looked at the paralytic’s condition, they could have responded in doubt: What could Jesus do? Instead, they believed Jesus could heal him – they had faith. The Bible said the paralytic’s sins were forgiven when Jesus saw the faith of the four friends.
- IF YOU WANT TO LIFT YOURSELF UP, LIFT UP SOMEONE ELSE.”Booker T. Washington (1856-1915) Emancipated Slave and Education Reformer
3) WE MUST MAKE A PLAN
Although faith and prayer are important ingredients to bringing others to Jesus, you need to do something too. You need a plan. When the four friends saw the way to Jesus was blocked, they came up with a plan to get the paraplegic to Jesus.
“FORGETTING HOW TO FISH”
What are some of the tips we need to remember as we fish for disciples?
- Go where the fish are. Be with people on their own turf.
- Be real, be open, and be honest.
- Be creative. We don’t have to do things the same old way.
- Be spiritual, but not “churchy”.
- Be patient. It takes persistence.
- Be on the lookout for where God is at work.
4) WE MUST OVERCOME DIFFICULTIES & HAVE COURAGE TO DO SOMETHING DIFFERENT
When the four friends saw the path to Jesus blocked, they had every reason to feel discouraged, but they didn’t give up. They looked for another way to Jesus. Building Rise 429’s song, “I’ll be fearless for You” shows how we should be:
I’ll be fearless for You
I’ll be fearless for You
Take me I’m Yours
I’ll be fearless for You
So the world may see
That the captives are freed
‘Cause you have been heaven sent to us
Unwilling to bend
Unwilling to break
Headstrong I’ll stand
No matter what it takes
5) WE MUST WORK TOGETHER TO GET THE JOB DONE
Have you ever tried to carry someone on a stretcher with only three people? It doesn’t work. If all four of the friends hadn’t helped, the paralytic would have fallen off the stretcher. AU has been working together to bring people to family month:
- 9:15 am Sunday Morning prayer
- AU fasting chain for two weeks
- Wednesday night cleanup with the whole church to prepare for new souls
6) WE MUST BE WILLING TO PAY THE COST
These four men wouldn’t have made a hole in the roof unless they were willing to fix it. They had to pay the cost of bringing their friend to Jesus. Bringing a friend to Jesus always requires sacrifice.
- You must live wholly for Christ.
- You must give up selfishness
- You will have to give of your Time, Talent and Treasure.
- You will at times have to suffer for Christ.
- You must really pray.
FAITH WORKS 101 SERIES
LESSON ONE: PRAYER 101
LESSON TWO: GOD’S WORD 101
LESSON THREE: UNITY 101
LESSON FOUR: SERVICE 101
LESSON FIVE: EVANGELISM 101