Have you ever wondered about the fate of those in our world who have never heard the name “Jesus Christ”?
It is scary to me to think of the many millions of people in our world and throughout history who have never heard the name of our savior Jesus Christ. We know from Gods word that the only way to eternal life with God is through Jesus Christ. So, why are there so many unreached people in the world? I would submit that it is due to a lack of participation by those who are already part of the Body of Christ.
The Church is full of people who say they care about the lost, or that they want everyone to spend eternity in Heaven with God, but when asked to do something for the kingdom they think “someone else will do it” or “I am not qualified” or “I do not have time for that” or “this task could be too dangerous for me”. These people are, by omitting themselves from the work of the church, effectively cutting off the fingers of the Body of Christ.
Importance of EVERY Member
At First Baptist Church of Vidor, TX we have just finished a study and sermon series about spiritual gifts. One of the focal points of the entire study was the importance of every member doing their God given function in the Body of Christ. The Human body is a great way to stress the importance of every member being active in the mission of the Christian Church.
For example, recently a friend of mine, who is a maintenance man by trade, had a very unfortunate accident. While working on a large compressor, he leaned a bit too far forward and ended up loosing two fingers from his hand when they got caught in the cooling fan of the compressor. My friend is ok now, but he has lost some of the ability to accomplish his daily tasks due to a shortage of appendages (or members).
The Church is the same way.
If there are any members in The Church who are not participating in ministry, the Church suffers. It was God’s purpose for The Church to be “The city on a hill”, “Salt of the Earth”, “Light in a Dark World”. If the members of The Church are not participating, The Church becomes a “Hidden City” “Salt without Taste” “a Dim light in an even Dimmer World”
Romans 12:3-5 “Serve in The Body”
3For by the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think with sober judgment, each according to the measure of faith that God has assigned.4 For as in one body we have many members, and the members do not all have the same function,5 so we, though many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another.
Romans 12:6-8 “Serve Through Giftedness”
6 Having gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, in proportion to our faith;7 if service, in our serving; the one who teaches, in his teaching;8 the one who exhorts, in his exhortation; the one who contributes, in generosity; the one who leads, with zeal; the one who does acts of mercy, with cheerfulness.
Romans 12:9-15 “Serve With Godly Attitudes”
9 Let love be genuine. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good.10 Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor.11 Do not be slothful in zeal, be fervent in spirit, serve the Lord.12 Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.13 Contribute to the needs of the saints and seek to show hospitality.14 Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse them.15 Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep.
C.S.Lewis in Mere Christianity:
Here us another thing that used to puzzle me. Is it not frightfully unfair that this new life should be confined to people who have heard of Christ and have been able to believe in Him? But the truth is God has not told us what His arrangements about other people are. We do know that no man can be saved except through Christ; we do not know that only those who know Him can be saved through Him. But in the meantime, if you are worried about the people outside, the most unreasonable thing you can do is to remain outside yourself. Christians are Christ’s body, the organism through which He works. Every addition to that body enables Him to do more. If you want to help those outside you must add your own little cell to the body of Christ who alone can help them. Cutting off a man’s fingers would be an odd way of getting him to do more work.
A note on “Danger” in the ministry
One thing that has really bothered me about Christians today, especially in our American culture, is the idea that missions and ministry must be safe. On many occasions I have heard young men and women come up with great plans to reach people groups, or take trips to remote areas in hopes of claiming even one new member to the Body of Christ; only to be shot down by parents or friends or even by pastors saying “that would be too dangerous” or questioning “will that be safe” or warning “you could get very sick going there, or be killed for your faith”. And so these young men and women are talked out of doing their ministry so that they can stay home in their “safe” lives accomplishing little for the kingdom.
What would the Apostle Paul say to this? I remind you that Paul was taken outside a city that he was preaching in, beaten, stoned, and left for dead. What did he do when he woke up from the beating? He got up, turned and walked back to the city, and began to preach again.
Paul, and Jesus Christ himself who DIED on the cross, did not play it safe. They did not SIT and let others do the job. They Cared about people, and made sure they did everything they could to add members to the body!
- Do I really care about the lost
- Are there things I could be doing to further the Kingdom of God
- What are my Passions
- Do I put my safety or my comfort ahead of the eternal fate of others
- Am I doing my part in The Body of Christ
- Am I even a member of The Body of Christ