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This Sermon Made Me Rethink How I Share the Gospel!

You need to set aside 44 minutes and listen to this sermon! It seriously made me rethink how I communicate the Gospel.

I know that seems like a lot of time but I believe this is an important message that Christians need to hear.

Jeff Durbin is the president of Apologia Ministries which includes Apologia Radio.

shocker sermonAs a missionary I’m in the business of evangelism! Nevertheless this sermon was a good wake up call for me personally.

It’s so easy to fall into the trap of softening the gospel for the sake of numbers. It’s so easy to excuse our lack of a clear gospel message with the fact that we are building relationships and doing “lifestyle evangelism.”

I listened to this sermon twice and some parts more than twice. I pulled out a few quotes below.

“The Good News is not good advice, the Good News is not Jesus asking you to give him a chance or a try!”

“Jesus doesn’t come to make your life simply better!”

“The message of the Gospel always came with a call to repentance and faith, not a try Jesus!”

“Perhaps the world thinks our message is irrelevant because it is irrelevant, when we give them the idea that Jesus is something you simply add to your story.”

“If we don’t go to the hard places, people don’t hear the gospel.”

“A bold proclamation of the faith that gets in the face of culture and sacrifices everything.”

“The story of the Gospel always came with a reminder of sin.”

“We soften our message, we soften our blow for the sake of numbers.”

“Jesus would fail every single seminary course on evangelism.”

“Jesus is the master of the church shrinkage movement.”

“Jesus talked about coming to die!”

“We don’t need people to fill a spot on a stage, we need people who are ready to give their lives in missionary sacrifice and to die for the sake of the Gospel!”

“If you come to serve Jesus in ministry don’t come for the sake of the stuff and the building, come for the sake of the lives of the lost.”

Question: How can we make the preaching of the Gospel in our lives and in our churches look more like Jesus’ and Paul’s preaching of the Gospel?

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I am a pastor, missionary, and preacher of the Gospel of Jesus Christ in Ukraine since 2007. God blessed me with a wonderful wife and 5 amazing children! My greatest passion is to teach, encourage, and exhort others to turn to Jesus, who is Savior, Lord, and God!

  • I can’t wait to listen to this- thanks for sharing.
    I laughed out loud when I read these two quotes (they’re so powerful and true),

    “Jesus would fail every single seminary course on evangelism.”

    “Jesus is the master of the church shrinkage movement.”

    • I hope you get a chance to listen TC! I think it will be worth your time.

      • I enjoyed listening to it. It’s powerful. I want to listen to more of his sermons. Thanks, Caleb.

        • Check out their youtube channel and I think you’ll find some sermons there.

  • I think a lot of it has to do with context. Jesus was preaching to Jews, Peter to Jews, Paul to Gentiles. Not that that makes their methods imperfect – no! What I’m saying is that they were wise enough to understand how to talk to their audience. You can see this with Paul at Mars Hill – he talks in a very different manner from how he would’ve talked to Jews. So I think sharing the gospel with a disgruntled atheist may require a different strategy from an open-minded teenager which would be altogether different from evangelizing to a Chinese person who had never heard the name of Jesus.
    But I’m eager to give this a listen!

    • Right on Loren! We actually do an activity in our evangelism seminars where we compare three different gospel sermons in the book of Acts and then discuss why they approach the gospel from different points. It’s a real eye opener for many. There are however a few constants in all gospel preaching and one of them is the aspect of acknowledging sin and repentance.

  • Pingback: Knowing the Gospel {Day 16} | seasoned with salt()

  • What powerful points you shared, I’m going to listen to the entire sermon soon. “The story of the Gospel always came with a reminder of sin” was a great quote. We should show people we are sinners and also the good news about the grace of God!

    • It’s easy to just share one side of the message, if we only talk about sin that’s a problem but if we only talk about grace and people fail to understand the problem of sin that’s a problem too.

  • I think it is a big mistake if people think that a course on Evangelism is important. God does the work not man. He provides the words. I once attended a course on Evangelism and I came home and told my husband that I did not believe the man who provided the course was even saved. I do believe Loren Phillips makes some very good points. Every single person requires a different approach. What a person needs is a real love for the lost and hurting and a love for the Word of God. Much Prayer opens the keys to the Kingdom.

    • The mistake is in thinking that any one course on evangelism will give you the secret to effectively sharing the gospel. There are some good course on evangelism out there but in the end they are limited. We have to share the message truthfully and let the Holy Spirit do his work.

  • I agree completely. I remember when God first started using me. I used to have a prayer time every morning before I went to work. I used to sit in front of my window – it was a down to the ground window, and I sat praising God for all the things that grew in my garden. I love gardening. For the trees and flowers, the birds and everything I could think of that for that moment I was just so grateful for. Then I would take time to read just a passage from the Bible and ask God to give me people for His Kingdom that very day. There were times that stood out for me because there were days when I told my boss, for example, about Jesus (I cannot remember today what was said) but I do remember feeling embarrassed afterwards for it seemed as though I could not stop myself and I popped out to the loo and sat there and it dawned on me that it wasn’t me it was God.
    There was not one job I took where I did not first inform my employer that I was a Christian: And one job, in a firm called Gallens Crowley & Chamberlain in Canberra, I was there on contract for seven months. When I left another lawyer there said 73 people heard the Gospel while you were here Sheila. I have been just “sold out for Jesus” and God has looked after me. For even when I did not have a cent in the bank to pay for my mortgage on the Wednesday the Bureau would ring and I would be in work on the Thursday and they would offer me a fortnight’s pay before I even began work. I have had some amazing and exciting times with the Lord and I look back with great joy and pleasure in the way God has used me. I am indeed privileged to have been chosen and belong to the Great I Am.

    We are praying every day for your safety as you travel. Are you going to Hungary through Romania or are you sort of, going round the corner. Are you going through all the other countries which surround Ukraine. We are also praying for your friend. I cannot understand why all this had to be in the first place. I understand Russia has stopped the flow on gas into your region. I understand the gas was stopped before but Mark cannot remember when. The Ebola crisis is horrible!! I thought there was a passage in Scripture that speaks of diseases spreading globally in the end times? However I cannot find it. I wish you God speed and His protection over all of you in these rather precarious times.