Some of us in church have some crazy ideas – like that we should sit down when singing… or that children’s church is wrong, or that baptising babies is ok, or that the doctrine of the election is actually true… But in all of this denominational hoopla (and there is a TONNE of it) there are, in fact, fundamentals that never change. Today in our Baptist Fellowship meeting in session two we had a passionate missionary preaching on the scripture in 1 Corinthians 15 – Always abounding in the work of the Lord; and boy did he hit some home runs. He mentioned at large the fact that there are particular books, evangelists, teachers and theologians that we all listen to and promote, yet divisions that we cause with our nitpicky theological differences that the world mocks and the devil laughs at wringing his hands. Now, don’t get me wrong – like Jude in scripture I’m always up for defending the gospel, marking false teachers that are well-known and on the rise, and promoting biblical discernment as much as I can, but underneath all of that there was a bigger picture this morning – that lost people are dying and going to hell, and that we are Christ’s ambassadors bringing the message of repentance and forgiveness in Jesus name! And that it’s the blood of Christ spilled for those sinners that we are to preach. Christ crucified was the cry this morning. Those two words alone are enough to get you jumping out of your slumber if you’re ever in one!
The biblical gospel as a fundamental truth was preached, loudly proclaimed and defended this morning, but it also got personal with the admonition to not get caught up in twenty million side issues that aren’t really important hills to die on – there’s a great commission too big and great to neglect, and people are dying at a rate of something like 356 youth per day in Australia. 15 of these I have just found are dead from alcohol poisoning here. So it’s crucial that we get off our horses, start getting in the fight and winning souls biblically for Christ! Now, this involves different people with different gifts reaching different people. I, for one, am not going to be the best chap to be sent to building sites, gyms and golf courses to do this – because I’m not sporty, avoid exercise and generally am a clean, nerdy computer-y type of guy – but in our own spheres of influence we certainly can reach people. I, for one, have seen many listen to me whilst chatting with them at work about Jesus and His sacrifice when the question of “religion” comes up, or the terrorism sweeping Europe, the US and partly in Australia of late. This is my thing – using apologetics and scripture to promote Jesus and the Faith to them, without compromise. I love doing it. But in the right context where I’m able to reach people.
At the end of today I had a renewed passion to launch into a new ministry I’ve been praying about, a passion to continually use gospel tracts wherever I can as a presentation of the gospel to those who are dying, and an urgency again about defending and proclaiming the precious truths of repentance and faith, Christ alone, scripture alone, grace alone through faith alone, and refuting false teachings with good research behind my propositions. This is the wonder of joining in a conference geared towards believers who want to defend the truth, who are seeking righteousness, and who are evangelistic. What a day