This past weekend, I was propelled to step out of my comfort zone. This after watching one of the sermons from the 2016 Together For The Gospel Conference: Martyrdom and Mission: Why Reformers Died in Their Day, How We Must Live in Ours by Pastor David Platt.
In his sermon, Pastor Platt first rehearsed how many heroes of our faith were martyred for their faith. He explained that they died because they broadcast the gospel, not simply believe it. He said: “If we stay silent about our faith, we stay safe.”
That statement stung me. He later said that people here in the United States would often say that we need to be concerned about the “unreached” people here in the U.S. He retorted that people living here are not unreached. They have us for neighbors, coworkers, family. In other words, it’s on us.
Yes, I believe that Jesus is the Only Way of salvation, and that he calls all men to repent and believe, and that eternal life is promised to all who believe. But while my faith in Christ does me a whole lot of good; what good does it do for my neighbor, or my family if I say nothing?
The Apostle Paul said:
For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone that believes; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. Romans 1:16 ESV
How will they know the way except I share? Except believers share the gospel as we have been commissioned to do in Matthew 28:19,20, we leave people to perish in their sins without hearing the light of the gospel.
For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” 14How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? 15 And how are they to preach unless they be sent? Romans 10:13-15a ESV
Those of us believers that are living in English speaking countries have no excuse. The Bible is freely provided to us in many versions; whereas, translations are not readily available in the languages of all people. Neither are all peoples free to exercise their religion, but are instead persecuted for their faith in Jesus Christ.
What if I did not live in the United States of America? What if instead, I had been born into a Muslim family and had had the awesome privilege of hearing the gospel and the gift of faith to believe? What would I do then with my newfound faith? Would I stay silent to stay safe?
Would I be as brave as Fatima? I pray so. Back to the sermon that I watched this past weekend propelling me out of my comfort zone. Right after hearing that sermon, I got up, brushed my hair, put on my tennis shoes and walked over to my new neighbor whom I have never met.
I rang the doorbell, then knocked on her door, intent on inviting her to church, sharing the gospel. I waited and finally the door opened. I introduced myself, and told her that I was her neighbor, that I was a Christian and wanted to invite her to church. She introduced herself and told me that she was a Muslim. She said that she believes in Allah, but that she believes all religions point to God. I shared that what I believed. While she was not able to attend this Sunday because of previous commitment, she indicated that she may next week. It was a very friendly exchange.
I thank God for allowing me to step out of my comfort zone. I also pray for my neighbor. Who knows, I may be the one who God uses to open her eyes to the light of the gospel. Christians, we could either stay silent about our faith and stay safe, or share the gospel with the hope someone will believe and be saved.
Let’s go tell somebody!