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 A Rebuke to the Church

[img]http://openairoutreach.com/albums/album05/DVC00328.thumb.jpg[/img] [img]http://openairoutreach.com/albums/album05/DVC00333.thumb.jpg[/img]

This is a picture of a girl in South Carolina, standing on a street corner with a sign. If she is going to such an extreme extent to get a message out to the general public, it must be a very important message right? Wrong. She is doing this because she is getting paid to promote a halloween store.

This is my concern: as I travel I see these teenagers on street corners everywhere promoting halloween stores. These teenagers are everywhere and I know I'm not the only one that has seen them. Maybe you have seen them yourself. Usually these teenagers look like they could be popular in their schools. Yet they are willing to stand on the street corners of major intersections, with signs, to do what? To promote a demonic halloween store and get paid for it!

Yet, how many Youth Pastors can get their youth group to do this for Jesus? How many Youth Pastors would even dare to ask their teenagers to do this? Sure, youth groups may do this for car washes to raise money. But how many today are willing to do this for the gospel? How many are willing to do this to reach the lost, to reach our community with God's message? How many are willing to stand on a street corner with a "Turn to Jesus" sign?

Obviously the devil knows how effective it is to hold a sign on a busy street corner. The devil has the largest youth group in America. And he can get them to do all sorts of stuff for money, and very wicked stuff for pleasure. How much more should we, the Church of God, be so in love with Jesus Christ that we will be willing to go to the very ends of the earth for our Lord and Savior, to be willing to lay down our reputations and everything to help God to save the lost and dying world that He loves?

Let's take this as a rebuke from the devil. If the devils children can stand on street corners for him, can not God's children stand on street corners for Him???? You will answer that question by your life.

 2007/10/11 0:21
TonyS
Member



Joined: 2005/1/29
Posts: 154
Kansas City, Missouri

 Re: A Rebuke to the Church

Quote:
Let's take this as a rebuke from the devil.



Or, and, after the Halloween season these girls may be working drive-thru at McDonald’s or holding signs for little Caesars pizza or signs announcing closeout sales at Kmart etc…
Quote:
Yet, how many Youth Pastors can get their youth group to do this for Jesus? How many Youth Pastors would even dare to ask their teenagers to do this? Sure, youth groups may do this for car washes to raise money. But how many today are willing to do this for the gospel? How many are willing to do this to reach the lost, to reach our community with God's message? How many are willing to stand on a street corner with a "Turn to Jesus" sign?



This is presuming youth pastors feel this would be an effective witness, yet should God burden a young person with this I say go for it, don’t misunderstand. Youth Pastors in my opinion already have one of the most critical yet most thankless positions in the churches. The great Youth workers I know work hard to cultivate a spiritual atmosphere whereby the kids are growing and operating in their various gifts and callings. I also am acquainted with some young people in my area who carry large wooded crosses as a witness and evangelism tool. Others are so bold to carry their bibles into the worst of public schools unashamed. And still some will sit and hold the hand of a dear elderly saint in a skilled nursing facility and quietly read scripture, why? Because they are operating in their calling to the best of their ability.

Quote:
If the devils children can stand on street corners for him, cannot God's children stand on street corners for Him????



Really? The devil’s children based on this part-time job perhaps to pay car insurance? We may have a problem with the Halloween stores so be it, but let's not attack the kids.

Quote:
Obviously the devil knows how effective it is to hold a sign on a busy street corner



Or it is just business owners or managers placing an ad? Truth is I always kind of feel embarrassed for these kids, even more so when I see middle aged adults at these jobs often times seeing the humiliation on their faces.

That’s all… just a slightly different view. I get your concerns, and agree that we as believers need not be timid with a powerful Gospel of Christ and Him crucified as the only real answer for a troubled soul.


_________________
Tony Sexton

 2007/10/11 2:08Profile









 Re: A Rebuke to the Church

There's a type of believer who presumptuously witnesses for Jesus without first preparing himself in scripture, prayer, sackcloth and ashes. Such a one is bound to be religiously arrogant and equally unattractive to the heathen and the elect.

There's another type of believer who is painfully aware of his ill-preparedness, sinfulness, and pride. This one recognizes his inability to be an effective witness until he has overcome his demons. He will search the scriptures, repent, wrestle with demons, pray, and bemoan his fallen state until he's endowed with power from on high. It may take years, but he'll know when he's ready to effectively preach the Gospel.

You speak of kids in youth groups as though they ought to be witnessing. I say that no man, woman, boy or girl ought to so much as attempt to witness until they've repented, slain their demons, and show outward evidences of the fruit of the Holy Spirit.

Who's the more effective witness: the unregenerate girl with the Halloween poster or an unregenerate Churchian youth forced to hand out Jesus tracts?

The girl with the poster. She, at least, is familiar with the goods she's promoting.

All the posters, tracts, gospel music, and seminars in the world cannot compare with the witness of one genuine believer in Jesus Christ.

Belonging to a youth group is no guarantee of regeneration. If the unregenerate "Churchian" youth don't want to witness, don't make them. It won't be genuine and thus, will do more harm than good.

A genuinely regenerated person will witness about His Lord and Saviour whenever He can to anyone who will listen. You won't need to force, pay, or threaten him.

 2007/10/11 2:21
psalm1
Member



Joined: 2007/1/30
Posts: 1230


 Re:

Corey,
.....A big AMEN.
David

 2007/10/11 9:53Profile









 Re:

I agree with the responses. It's easy to judge and condemn the church today, and many times it is warrented. But many times I think we get so caught up in the pride that comes along with thinking we're always right... and everyone else in the church is always wrong... that we start to lose our grip on reality.

Krispy

 2007/10/11 9:57









 Re:

I think you guys missed my point.

Sinners are very committed to sin. But many of us professing Christians are not even closely committed to Christ as they are to sin. In fact, most professing Christians are just as committed to sin as those who don't even call themselves Christians.

But my whole point was, if teenagers can get out there on the streets with signs just to get a pay check, can we not get out there on the streets with signs to glorify God and win souls?

Whether we want to admit it or not, there is a lack of commitment in the Church of actually living for God, living for eternity, and living for souls.

Many Christians are even appauled at the very thought of standing on a street corner with a "turn to Jesus" sign! Many are more concerned about their image and their reputation then about promoting the truth!

Am I way off base with this or is there some truth in this even if we don't like to hear it?? Do you guys really think that the Church is doing all it can, and al it ought to do, for the Great Commission???

Let's wake up folks! The world is going to hell and many of us are not doing all that we can do to help God save it. Are we really "co-laborers" with God as we ought to be??

 2007/10/12 10:20









 Re:

Thank you for this refreshing word of truth, brother Corey! Grace be with you.

Brother Jesse, you don't have to witness to every creature in every situation. You don't have to. You won't be damned if you don't. You won't make a difference in the kingdom if you do. God's Kingdom is not in word, but in power. You don't become a Christian or maintain your status by producing certain works such as sharing your faith with unbelievers, giving to the poor, rebuking brothers in sin, etc. I think Corey said it well.

So get close to the Lord. Listen to Him. Do as He says. This is the hardest thing, for which you need much grace. It may mean that you will have to keep your mouth shut when you have the most to say. But He will get the glory! Honestly, Jesse, do you want to get a lot done for the Lord, even as much as you possibly can, to the praise of your diligence so you can have peace before His throne, or do you want to please Him by doing nothing but His concrete and definite will? I said "do [i]you[/i]" ... The truth is that what you or I want to do shouldn't matter.

In Him,
Slavyan

 2007/10/12 11:08









 Re:

The vast majority of the kids in our youthgroups are not saved. They are children of the devil and committed servants of their babylonian religion. They have seen their parents christianity at work, sitting at home in nice houses watching ungodly programming on television night after night, taking expensive vacations, you know living the good life, and they have no desire to deviate from that path.

At first I agreed with you Jesse, but reading all of the comments I have to agree it would only bring more reproach to the kingdom by sending these kids out to do anything other then the annual fund raising car wash.

Better to be hidden away in the shame of their lukewarmness and compromise then bringing greater reproach to Jesus among the heathen.

In Christ -Jim

 2007/10/12 11:17









 Re:

Quote:
The vast majority of the kids in our youthgroups are not saved.



I dont know if I agree with this... mainly because I dont know if this is true or not. And neither do you. Altho your statement is not a complete generalization, it [b]is[/b] an over generalization because there are no facts to back up such a claim as this.

Quote:
They are children of the devil and committed servants of their babylonian religion.



This is true of anyone who is not saved. However, in this context, this comes across as more judgementalism and condemnation... which, sadly, seems to be about all you can add to this forum.

Quote:
They have seen their parents christianity at work, sitting at home in nice houses watching ungodly programming on television night after night



Again, while this is true for a lot of teens... it certainly isnt true of all teens who call themselves Christians.

Quote:
taking expensive vacations



Not sure what this has to do with anything. Sounds to me like you are jealous that God has been blessing some families to take nice vacations. What this has to do with what your speaking about, I dont know. Just because someone takes an expensive vacation once in awhile doesnt mean they cant be a true Christian... so what business is it of yours?

Quote:
and they have no desire to deviate from that path.



Again... a gross over generalization.

Quote:
At first I agreed with you Jesse, but reading all of the comments I have to agree it would only bring more reproach to the kingdom by sending these kids out to do anything other then the annual fund raising car wash.



Yea, I can agree with this to a point. I am completely against sending all kids out to witness. I agree with the poster who said that before anyone does anything like witnessing, they need to be on their knees and weeping for the lost... and searching their own soul to see if there be any unrighteousness in them. [b]But again[/b]... you simply cant over generalize and say this is not the "vast majority" of Christian teens because you have no idea if such a statement if true or not. Only God does.

Quote:
Better to be hidden away in the shame of their lukewarmness and compromise then bringing greater reproach to Jesus among the heathen.



Again... I could agree with this statement if it were not for your over generalization, coupled with your judgemental and condemning attitude.

Jim, I love you man, but your words come across as haughty and condemning. In your attempt to impress us all, you in fact offend quite a number. And I expect that you will wear that offence as a badge of courage, but you shouldnt, brother. It's not the same offence as the cross is.

Proverbs 16:18 "Pride goeth before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall."

Proverbs 21:24 "Proud and haughty scorner is his name, who dealeth in proud wrath."

Isaiah 10:33 "Behold, the Lord, the LORD of hosts, shall lop the bough with terror: and the high ones of stature shall be hewn down, and the haughty shall be humbled."

Since you see all these problems with the church, and with youth groups in particular... let me ask... what are you doing to make a difference? Do you work with youth? Are you on your knees weeping and sobbing in prayer for them? It's easy to hide behind a keyboard and make strong condemning over generalizations about them... it's a lot harder to roll up your sleeves and actually make a difference.

Your words lack grace, mercy and love. I'm all for strong words, but without grace, mercy and love it is nothing more than "holier-than-thou" judgementalism. That does more to harm the cause of Christ than 100 youth groups at a fund raising car wash.

Now that I have that off my chest... I am leaving for vacation. See y'all in a week or so.

Krispy

 2007/10/12 13:36









 Re:

Quote:
But my whole point was, if teenagers can get out there on the streets with signs just to get a pay check, can we not get out there on the streets with signs to glorify God and win souls?



Jesus didn't win souls by the world's means. Like the woman at the well, He won them one at a time, doing it God's way, in God's time.

The regenrate believer is already witnessing... a regenerate, born again of the Spirit, cannot help but witness about Jesus... But, being in the spirit, he will do God's work, God's way, in God's time, speaking to those God puts in his way or, conversely, sending him where he's in their way.

Just because one's not handing out tracts, armbands, waving signs like that kid with the sign, or wearing Jesus t-shirts, does not mean that one's not doing the Lord's work.

Has it ever occured to you that the reason The Gospel (at least, the spirit-filled Gospel) is fading in the West, is because of all the worldly methods used to "push it"?

Maybe the saints don't want a Christianity repackaged like the world's propoganda. No Christian comics. No Christian tracts. No Christian T-shirts. No fancy webpages with flash presentations...

God. Sanctuary. Peace. Spirit-filled prayer. Understand?

 2007/10/12 14:11





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