Hello Project Ezra! I pray you are doing well. We are heading into the holiday season, and I’m very much looking forward to Christmas in the Park, our local city Christmas event, which will going on from Thanksgiving through the New Year. I would encourage you to start taking a look around your area, to see what kind of events might be going on, and to plan on attending and inviting others to join you in sharing the gospel . There are certain times of year that lend themselves to sharing the gospel, and during which it is much easier to start spiritual conversations. Christmas is obviously one of those times, as are several holidays that cluster around it. Now is a great time to start planning, so that you and others will have time to put events on your calendar before the other cares and activities of life gobble up all your time, as they inevitably will. So don’t delay! Make up your Christmas evangelism calendar now.
This week’s suggested chapter is Micah 7, and I’ve decided to do things a little differently. The outline below is still rough, and I’ve left it that way deliberately, to give you an idea of the process I use. When I go through the suggested chapter each week, I first go through it verse by verse, trying to determine which verses or passages lend themselves to a good, Biblical gospel presentation. Then I go through the building blocks of a gospel presentation and compare them to what I picked, to determine which concepts are and are not specifically addressed by passages in the chapter, and to attempt to add them and present them in a way that is consistent with and compliments the passages I’ve noted. Finally, I try to arrange the passages and evangelism concepts so that the presentation flows smoothly. It generally takes a couple of re-writes, and I seldom use all the verses and passages I originally picked, but by God’s grace and through a lot of prayer, it comes together.
So this week I’ve left more of a rough outline, along with a reminder of building blocks of evangelism, and I would like to encourage you to put together your own outline based on these notes. Or, you could pick another chapter and try going through the same process from the beginning. It will force you to think about the passage more deeply, and look for Biblical principles, aspects of God’s character and nature, and the like, which are reflected in the gospel. This has been a tremendous blessing to me. Be careful, though, that you read far enough back in the chapter, or even in previous chapters, to insure that the message you see is actually reflected in the passage’s original context. Regardless of how powerful or clever you think an approach is, if it is not in line with the ideas the author originally intended to convey, it is sinful and dishonors God.
So I look forward to hearing how your preaching goes this weekend, and hope you will share the approach your took on sharing the gospel using Micah 7. God bless, and may He be honored and glorified in your life today!
All for His glory,
The godly have perished from the earth, and there is no one upright among mankind
Their hands are on what is evil, to do it well
The prince and the judge ask for a bribe, and the great man utters the evil desire of his soul
There is none good, no not one.
No one is upright, for the common man to the leaders in the highest places of government
The world is such a place of sin that you cannot trust your closest friend or your own family
Put no trust in a neighbor, have no confidence in a friend
Guard the doors of your mouth from her who lies in your arms
The son treats the father with contempt, the daughter rises us against her mother
A man’s enemies are the men of his own house.
Our trust is in the Lord to save us. He is worthy of our faith and trust
As for me, I will look to the Lord.
I will wait for the God of my salvation; my God will hear me.
Rejoice not over me, O my enemy
When I fall, I shall rise
When I sit in darkness, the Lord will be a light to me.
I will trust in the Lord to save me
I also am guilty before the Lord due to my sin
I will bear the indignation of the Lord because I have sinned against Him
Until He pleads my case, and executes judgment for me
I have sinned against the Lord. Will be condemned until He pleads my case
All the nations shall fear the Lord
As in the days when you came out of the land of Egypt, I will show them marvelous things.
The nations shall see and be ashamed of all their might;
They shall lay their hands on their mouths; their ears shall be deaf
They shall turn in dread to the Lord our God, and they shall be in fear of you.
The nations will fear the Lord
God is a good and merciful God
Who is a God like you, pardoning iniquity and passing over transgression for the remnant of
He does not retain His anger forever, because He delights in steadfast love.
He will again have compassion on us; He will tread our iniquities underfoot.
You will cast all our sins into the depth of the sea
Though we have sinned, God will pardon our iniquity
Will show His mercy and steadfast love for His remnant
Who is the remnant of God’s inheritance today?
God pardon’s iniquity and passes over transgression for the remnant of his inheritance
Judgment is just, but some receive mercy.
How can we receive mercy?
The Lord will stand in defense of His people.
Evangelism Building Blocks
Transition from the natural to the spiritual - The scripture reading does this, and several of the subject areas above lend themselves to this.
God’s law and our sin – Use God’s law to bring conviction of sin, and passages that recognize our sinfulness to reinforce the fact.
God’s justice and the wrath we deserve – Talk about the God as a just judge, who because of his goodness, righteousness and holiness must punish sin. Talk about what that sin looks like.
Christ’s cross and substitutionary atonement – Show what Christ accomplished on the cross and how that payment of sin can be applied to us.
Repentance and faith – Bring sinners to the foot of the cross and plead with them to turn from sin and trust in Christ alone.