Monday, August 17, 2015

The Sin of Silence

The sin of silence is when you fail to share the gospel with your neighbor. It has been said that the primary reason people fail to evangelize is fear.  Peter denied the Lord three times. Are we denying Him by our silence?

Jesus said, "Therefore everyone who confesses Me before men, I will also confess him before My Father who is in heaven. But whoever denies Me before men, I will also deny him before My Father who is in heaven." (Mat 10:32-33). 

The Man Who Is Content To Save Only Himself Is Not Even Saving Himself
The man who is content to save only himself is not even saving himself. Such a man may think, "Evangelism is for others, but not for me." Or "I'll leave that to the evangelists. That's not my gift." Others simply invite their friends to church, and assume they have done their duty. They figure that if the person comes to church, the pastor will preach the gospel to them. But the Lord commanded us, "Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit..." (Mat 28:19). He did not say, "Go therefore and invite people to church."

I'm not saying that someone cannot get saved by attending church.  But if we think the responsibility to evangelize the lost belongs solely to the professional ministers, we have missed the will of God. Every disciple must be making disciples. I believe it has been said that most people get saved by hearing the gospel from another individual they know, such as a friend or family member.  The majority of people don't get saved by hearing a sermon from a preacher at a meeting. So if we rely primarily on the preachers at meetings to preach the gospel, then most of the people who would have otherwise gotten saved will perish in their sin.

Then Jesus said to His disciples, "If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me." (Mat 16:24).  It requires self denial and cross-bearing to share the gospel. If you follow Jesus, you will be imitating Him by sharing the gospel and being a witness to your neighbor.

Jesus also taught about the second greatest commandment of God. He said, "The second is this, 'You shall love your neighbor as yourself.' There is no other commandment greater than these." (Mar 12:31). If we love our neighbor, how can we stand by while he goes to hell?

The apostle Paul wrote to Philemon, "I pray that you may be active in sharing your faith, so that you will have a full understanding of every good thing we have in Christ." (Philemon 6, NIV 1984).  It is also my prayer that every one of you who read this article would be active in sharing your faith, too.

It Is the Duty of Every Christian To Evangelize To The Lost
Every Christian has a duty to evangelize the lost. We must warn them and let them decide where they want to go. You should not think to yourself that they would never repent, even if you shared the gospel with them. It's not your responsibility to make that call.

Do not be afraid of warning anyone because you are afraid that they will reject you. Even if they  hate you, even if your family members hate you, you must warn them. Do not be a man-pleaser or fear losing someone's love.

Hell is a terrible place, and if you really love someone you would rather that they be hurt now by your warning and escape from hell. Tell them the truth. As we warn them, those who believe will come to the Lord and those who don’t believe, your witness to them will be for their own judgment, a moment they will regret in hell forever.

Putting it All Together
God can use your testimony for Jesus and your witness for Him, but He cannot use your silence. The sin of silence will keep you from heaven. It is the duty of every Christian to evangelize the lost, so don't fail to evangelize!

Attribution notice: Most Scripture quotations taken from the NASB.  Other Scriptures taken from The Holy Bible, New International Version® NIV®, where noted.
Author's note: You are invited to read Rescue Souls!, Sins That Will Keep You From Heaven, Give Me Children or I'll Die!, Confrontational Evangelism, and Being a Witness for Christ. You may find more articles about being fruitful and multiplying on the Home Page of this blog. You may also find my collection of blogs at Writing for the Master.

Do You Want to Know Him?
If you want to know Jesus personally, you can. It all begins when you repent and believe in Jesus.  Do you know what God's Word, the Bible says?

“Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of God, and saying, ‘The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.’” (Mar 1:14b-15).  He preached that we must repent and believe.

Please see my explanation of this in my post called "Do You Want to Know Jesus?"

Len Lacroix is the founder of Doulos Missions International.  He was based in Eastern Europe for four years, making disciples, as well as helping leaders to be more effective at making disciples who multiply, developing leaders who multiply, with the ultimate goal of planting churches that multiply. His ministry is now based in the United States with the same goal of helping fulfill the Great Commission.

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