Saturday, March 22, 2008

Easter Sunday

The "Resurrection" in the life of the believer is pivotal to say the least. Without the resurrection... well Apostle Paul said it best.... 1 Corinthians 15:12 Now if Christ be preached that he rose from the dead, how say some among you that there is no resurrection of the dead? But if there be no resurrection of the dead, then is Christ not risen: And if Christ be not risen, then [is] our preaching vain, and your faith [is] also vain.Yea, and we are found false witnesses of God; because we have testified of God that he raised up Christ: whom he raised not up, if so be that the dead rise not. For if the dead rise not, then is not Christ raised: And if Christ be not raised, your faith [is] vain; ye are yet in your sins. Then they also which are fallen asleep in Christ are perished. If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable.
Christ' resurrection I say unto you is essential to "THE FAITH." Without it our faith is in vain and we are yet in our sins.

On Wednesday as I was leaving my part-time job I had this flyer(listed above-front and back) stuck on the windshield of my car and was eagerly looking for a hint, insinuation, analogy, or just something about Christ or the resurrection. To my astonishment I found absolutely nothing. I couldn't even begin to explain how disappointed I was, after slapping myself back into reality I realized this is the modern day seeker sensitive church and "ITS" way of evangelism. I can always count on my good buddy Lionel to get me fired up about something since we are a bit overly zealous about these type of things pretty much all the time. We realized that this way of evangelism is just plain not Biblical and WRONG!!! I would like to delve into a Biblical way of evangelism and toss out what so many of us have been taught about reaching out to the lost. As my old Pastor and (thank God for deliverance and exegesis)Mrs. Pastor used to say, "You catch the fish,(meaning people) bring them in the church and we clean em" How ridiculous!!! I can now say this in retrospect.
The primary purpose of the "church" is mutual edification. As we see the birth of the church in Acts, what do we find? In Acts 2:42 “They devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer.” It appears from scripture that the true Body of Christ is a body of believer's and not people visiting on Easter just to sooth their consciences in a nice Easter pink, purple, or pastel colored suit or dress. What do we see in this passage? 1)Biblical Teaching for the Body. 2) Fellowship or mutual edification 3) Eating amongst each other in like manner to the Lord's Supper, in which I wrote about this HERE. The Lord's supper was not MASS as the catholics would have you believe but it is was a meal. I have fortunately had the luxury of doing this every Sunday since I am a member of a house church and have began to see a real Body of true believer's in action and able to catch a glimpse of this in reality.
While at work Thursday I had man tell me he was going to church Sunday since he claimed to be "Catholic" and it was tradition in his family to go to church on Easter. I know his lifestyle and have an idea of what he might hear from a priest at a Catholic church with the Mass. So I blurted out.."Don't waste your time!!!!" I went further to say, "If you want the Gospel, I am an ambassador to the Most High God and have a message for you!!! Repent and believe. For the Kingdom is at Hand!!!" Of course I said it in a more acceptable manner and less intruding than that but he caught the drift. Nothing used to bother me more than the fact that on Easter, Christmas, maybe New Years Day, and Mother's Day everyone wants to show up in church with their Sunday's best with no real intention to make a God inspired conscience effort to be obedient to the revealed will of God-The Bible. Could you imagine Apostle Paul, Stephen, Peter, James, or anyone of these men preaching the Gospel in our churches today? They would either make the non-believer's feel extremely uncomfortable or they would be flogged. Their is absolutely no way that non-believer's should feel comfortable when the Gospel message is preached.
1 Corinthians 14:26 How is it then, brethren? when ye come together, every one of you hath a psalm, hath a doctrine, hath a tongue, hath a revelation, hath an interpretation. Let all things be done unto edifying.
It would seem the same things are echoed here to the Corinthian church that we aforementioned in Acts 2. Now, without getting to much into the gifts, it would seem in(1 Corinthians 14:23 If therefore the whole church be come together into one place, and all speak with tongues, and there come in [those that are] unlearned, or unbelievers, will they not say that ye are mad?) that non-believers coming to church did not appear to be the norm. I could be wrong and would love to hear some insight on this but as I look at the scriptures I do not see Paul and Barnabas having a outreach day or a "Eggstravaganza Hoopla." I am not saying that this is not okay but the primary tactic for evangelism seemed to be that we are a light unto wherever we go. So we are 24/7-365 sharing the Gospel.
I pray that you all have a good time sharing the Gospel without unsaved loved one's and family. For me, what I have begun to do is to ask some questions-What are your intentions in attending church today? Why brings you out this wonderful Easter? What does Easter mean to you? What does Christ' resurrection mean to you? These are simply questions to make people think and to really examine their hearts. For some reason unfortunately with a the Easter bunny fluff we tend to brush over the reality of the Cross and the mealing of His resurrection. Some preachers just aren't preaching the Gospel nowadays and it is a sad thing. The resurrection means one of two things for people...
2 Corinthians 2:15 For we are unto God a sweet savour of Christ, in them that are saved, and in them that perish: 16 To the one [we are] the 1)savour of death unto death; and to the other 2)the savour of life unto life. And who [is] sufficient for these things?