Thursday, April 17th, 2014
Public Relations (Part 17)
Stand Up, Stand Up For Jesus*
Therefore whoever confesses Me before men, him I will also confess before My Father Who is in Heaven. But whoever denies Me before men, him I will also deny before My Father Who is in Heaven.
Matthew 10:32-33 (NKJV)
For whoever is ashamed of Me and My Words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of him the Son of Man also will be ashamed when He comes in the glory of His Father with the holy angels.
Mark 8:38 (NKJV)
If we disown Him, He will also disown us.
2 Timothy 2:12 (NIV)
I remind you to stir up the gift of God which is in you... For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind. Therefore do not be ashamed of the Testimony of our Lord, nor of me His prisoner, but share with me in the sufferings for the Gospel according to the power of God, Who has saved us and called us with a holy calling.
2 Timothy 1:6-9 (NKJV)
A common fear among Christians is sharing the Gospel. Based on the evangelical practices of some churches, I believe this fear is a warning signal from God's Own Holy Spirit: don't go there. Because it's not where Jesus went.
Approaching disinterested people with lines like, 'Are you saved?' pushes people away from Christ--not toward. Jesus didn't do it, so why do we? Please pardon this word, but it's a stupid approach.
To avoid the cold shoulder that usually follows, most Christians don't evangelize at all. That's criminal neglect. Which is worse? Stupid or criminal? Surely the latter, but we don't need to be either in our witness of Christ. Jesus told us: 'Be wise as serpents and harmless as doves' (Matthew 10:16).
The best way to open the door of interest in the Gospel is to act like Christ--to freely share with all the world (especially those who are starving from lack of the right Food)** the fruit of the Holy Spirit: 'Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control' (Galatians 5:22-23).
Once done, people will become interested in the Reason for your kindness, the Reason for the hope you carry. 'Always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you' (1 Peter 3:15).
On the other hand, to deny Jesus, to deny His call on your life, or to stay comfy in your home... is an extraordinary dereliction of duty with a terrifying punishment. It's like going AWOL: absent without leave.
Actors, models and talent for Christ: you must go out into the world. You must be His witnesses. That being said, be smart about it. I believe God has given you this wisdom.
Always, always... stand up, stand up for Jesus.
To Be Continued...
* Song: Stand Up, Stand Up For Jesus (Text: George Duffield, Jr., 1818-1888, Music: George J. Webb, 1803-1887)
Stand up, stand up for Jesus,Ye soldiers of the Cross;Lift high His royal banner, It must not suffer loss.From victory unto victory His army shall He lead,Till every foe is vanquished, And Christ is Lord indeed.
Stand up, stand up for Jesus, The trumpet call obey;Forth to the mighty conflict, In this His glorious day.Ye that are brave now serve Him Against unnumbered foes;Let courage rise with danger, And strength to strength oppose.
Stand up, stand up for Jesus, Stand in His strength alone;The arm of flesh will fail you, Ye dare not trust your own.Put on the Gospel armor, Each piece put on with prayer;Where duty calls or danger, Be never wanting there.
Stand up, stand up for Jesus, The strife will not be long;This day the noise of battle, The next the victor's song.To those who vanquish evil A crown of life shall be;They with the King of Glory Shall reign eternally.
Children's choir: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r11Gmdq__-8
** 'I am the Bread of Life' (John 6:35); 'For My Flesh is food indeed, and My Blood is drink indeed' (John 6:55).
P.S. To read the other devotions in this series, please see the Public Relations series.