Evangelism Emphasis Month – Day 25, 2018

September 25
Rev. Greg Conover

I Corinthians 15:36

“You foolish person! What you sow does not come to life unless it dies.”

This is part one of three devotions on Evangelism. I am not a “natural” evangelist, so I
must read, study and watch others to learn not just how to evangelize but why. If we
spend our time on just the hows, we may start out trying but when we run out of gas, get
discouraged or just forgetful, we will stop as the guilt of not doing runs its course. But if
we’re reminded over and over again as to the whys we want to evangelize, we will want
to do so more and more.

Part One: Die

In this text Paul is talking about the resurrection of Jesus and the dead, but it also
applies to our daily lives. If Christ didn’t die, He couldn’t have conquered Satan, sin and
death. He died so we could live. The Bible tells us that we’re to die to self, that the old
man must die and we’re to die to sin etc. This idea of dying so that life can come is in
some ways a metaphor to “let go” of old ways— old sins, old habits and letting go of self
and putting others first.

For evangelism to travel from Bible studies, books and devotions (like this one!) we
must ask Jesus to go on a hunting trip in our hearts. We must ask Him to kill our hearts
of stone and make alive new hearts of love so what we read and study becomes who
we are and what we do. We must come to the end of ourselves so old ways die. We
must ask Jesus to expose and kill our uncaring, unloving, unmotivated hearts. So what
must die?

• The idea that someone else is to evangelize ‘them,’ especially the pastor.
• The idea that they think like us and they’re bad people if they don’t. (There are
only bad people – like you and me.)
• The idea that we can’t hang around sinners.
• The idea that once someone comes to Jesus they must adapt to our view of
politics, worship styles, dress, music and any other things that are more cultural
or not specifically in the Bible.
• The idea that the church is for us. If your church ceased to exist, would your
neighborhood care?
• The idea that, while tradition is good, tradition is not to be changed even if the
lost are excluded. This doesn’t mean tradition is to be ignored, but it does mean
we must decide what Scripture says about “being all things to all people…” Jesus
left Heaven to become like man. Are we willing to give something for the sake of
the lost?
• The idea that we care more about “our thing” than sending and going to do
“God’s thing.”

These are just some things that must die. As we read Scripture, we see a Savior who
gave up all His rights to come and die so that we may live. As we go deep into this
reality and realize this is His grace to us as sinners, we too will be willing to die to self
so others may know Him!