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    • By Jim_Alaska in Jim_Alaska's Sermons & Devotionals
         14
      Closed Communion
      James Foley
       
      I Corinthians 11:17-34: "Now in this that I declare unto you I praise you not, that ye come together not for the better, but for the worse. For first of all, when ye come together in the church, I hear that there be divisions among you; and I partly believe it. For there must be also heresies among you, that they which are approved may be made manifest among you. When ye come together therefore into one place, this is not to eat the Lord's Supper. For in eating every one taketh before other his own supper: and one is hungry, and another is drunken. What? have ye not houses to eat and to drink in? or despise ye the church of God, and shame them that have not? What shall I say to you? shall I praise you in this? I praise you not. For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, That the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread: And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me. After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me. For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do show the Lord's death till he come. Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord. But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup. For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord's body. For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep. For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged. But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world. Wherefore, my brethren, when ye come together to eat, tarry one for another. And if any man hunger, let him eat at home; that ye come not together unto condemnation. And the rest will I set in order when I come."

      INTRODUCTION

      Historic Baptists, true Baptists, have believed in and still believe in closed communion. Baptists impose upon themselves the same restrictions that they impose on others concerning the Lord’s Supper. Baptists have always insisted that it is the Lord’s Table, not theirs; and He alone has the right to say who shall sit at His table. No amount of so called brotherly love, or ecumenical spirit, should cause us to invite to His table those who have not complied with the requirements laid down plainly in His inspired Word. With respect to Bible doctrines we must always use the scripture as our guide and practice. For Baptists, two of the most important doctrines are Baptism and The Lord’s Supper. These are the only two doctrines we recognize as Church Ordinances. The Bible is very clear in teaching how these doctrines are to be practiced and by whom.

      We only have two ordinances that we must never compromise or we risk our very existence, they are Baptism and The Lord’s Supper.

      The moment we deviate from the precise method God has prescribed we have started down the slippery slope of error. True Baptists have held fast to the original doctrine of The Lord’s Supper from the time of Christ and the Apostles.

      Unfortunately, in this day of what the Bible describes as the age of luke warmness, Baptists are becoming careless in regard to strictly following the pattern laid out for us in Scripture. Many of our Bible colleges are graduating otherwise sincere, Godly and dedicated pastors and teachers who have not been taught the very strict, biblical requirements that surround the Lord’s Supper. Any Bible college that neglects to teach its students the differences surrounding Closed Communion, Close Communion and Open Communion is not simply short changing its students; it is also not equipping their students to carry on sound Bible traditions. The result is men of God and churches that fall into error. And as we will see, this is serious error.

      Should we as Baptists ignore the restrictions made by our Lord and Master? NO! When we hold to the restrictions placed upon the Lord’s Supper by our Master, we are defending the "faith which was once delivered to the saints" Jude 3.

      The Lord’s Supper is rigidly restricted and I will show this in the following facts:

      IT IS RESTRICTED AS TO PLACE

      A. I Corinthians 11:18 says, "When ye come together in the church." This does not mean the church building; they had none. In other words, when the church assembles. The supper is to be observed by the church, in church capacity. Again this does not mean the church house. Ekklesia, the Greek word for church, means assembly. "When ye come together in the church," is when the church assembles.

      B. When we say church we mean an assembly of properly baptized believers. Acts 2:41-42: "Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls. And they continued stedfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers."

      The church is made up of saved people who are baptized by immersion. In the Bible, belief precedes baptism. That’s the Bible way.

      Acts 8:12-13, "But when they believed Philip preaching the things concerning the kingdom of God, and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women. Then Simon himself believed also: and when he was baptized, he continued with Philip, and wondered, beholding the miracles and signs which were done."

      When we say properly baptized, we mean immersed. No unbeliever should take the Lord’s supper, and no non-immersed believer should take the supper. Those who are sprinkled are not baptized and cannot receive the supper. The Greek word for baptize is baptizo, and it always means to immerse.

      "In every case where communion is referred to, or where it may possibly have been administered, the believers had been baptized Acts 2:42; 8:12; 8:38; 10:47; 6:14-15; 18:8; 20:7. Baptism comes before communion, just as repentance and faith precede baptism".

      C. The Lord’s Supper is for baptized believers in church capacity: "When ye come together in the church," again not a building, but the assembly of the properly baptized believers.

      D. The fact that the Lord’s Supper is a church ordinance, to be observed in church capacity, is pointed out by the fact that it is for those who have been immersed and added to the fellowship of the church.

      E. The Lord’s Supper is never spoken of in connection with individuals. When it is referred to, it is only referred to in reference to baptized believers in local church capacity I Cor. 11:20-26).

      I want to quote Dr. W.W. Hamilton,

      "The individual administration of the ordinance has no Bible warrant and is a relic of Romanism. The Lord’s Supper is a church ordinance, and anything which goes beyond or comes short of this fails for want of scriptural example or command".

      “The practice of taking a little communion kit to hospitals, nursing homes, etc. is unscriptural and does not follow the scriptural example.”

      IT IS RESTRICTED TO A UNITED CHURCH

      A. The Bible in I Cor. 11:18 is very strong in condemning divisions around the Lord’s table. For first of all, when ye come together in the church, I hear that there be divisions among you; and I partly believe it.
      19 For there must be also heresies among you, that they which are approved may be made manifest among you.
      20 When ye come together therefore into one place, this is not to eat the Lord's supper.

      There were no less than four divisions in the Corinthian church.
      I Cor. 1:12: "Now this I say, that every one of you saith, I am of Paul; and I of Apollos; and I of Cephas; and I of Christ."

      Because of these divisions, it was impossible for them to scripturally eat the Lord’s Supper. Division in the local church is reason to hold off observing the Lord’s Supper. But there are also other reasons to forego taking the Lord’s Supper. If there is gross sin in the membership we do not take it. Here is scriptural evidence for this: 1Co 5:7 Purge out therefore the old leaven, that ye may be a new lump, as ye are unleavened. For even Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us:
      8 Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth. 9 I wrote unto you in an epistle not to company with fornicators:
      10 Yet not altogether with the fornicators of this world, or with the covetous, or extortioners, or with idolaters; for then must ye needs go out of the world. 11 But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolater, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat.

      B. At this point, I want to ask these questions: Are there not doctrinal divisions among the many denominations? Is it not our doctrinal differences that cause us to be separate religious bodies?

      IT IS RESTRICTED BY DOCTRINE

      A. Those in the early church at Jerusalem who partook "continued stedfastly in the apostles’ doctrine" Acts 2:42. And they continued stedfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.

      B. Those that do not hold to apostolic truth are not to partake. This means there is to be discipline in the local body. How can you discipline those who do not belong to the local body? You can’t. The clear command of scripture is to withdraw fellowship from those who are not doctrinally sound.

      II Thes 3:6: "Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye withdraw yourselves from every brother that walketh disorderly, and not after the tradition which he received of us."
      Rom. 16:17: "Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them."
      To commune together means to have the same doctrine.
      II Thes. 2:15: "Therefore, brethren, stand fast, and hold the traditions which ye have been taught, whether by word, or our epistle."
      II John 10-11: "If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed: For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds."

      C. Some Baptists in our day have watered down this doctrine by practicing what they call “Close Communion.” By this they mean that they believe that members of another Baptist church may take communion with us because they are of the same beliefs. Once again, this is unscriptural.

      The welcome to the Lord's Table should not be extended beyond the discipline of the local church. When we take the Lord’s Supper there is supposed to be no gross sin among us and no divisions among us. We have no idea of the spiritual condition of another church’s members. If there is sin or division in the case of this other church’s members, we have no way of knowing it. We cannot discipline them because they are not members of our church. This is why we practice “Closed” communion, meaning it is restricted solely to our church membership. 
      So then, in closing I would like to reiterate the three different ideas concerning the Lord’s Supper and who is to take it. 
      Closed Communion = Only members of a single local church. 
      Close Communion = Members of like faith and order may partake. 
      Open Communion = If you claim to be a Christian, or simply attending the service, you may partake. 
      It is no small thing to attempt to change that which was implemented by our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. 
      Mt. 28:20 Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen. 
      Many of our Baptist churches have a real need to consider the gravity of the act of observing The Lord’s Supper. It is not a light thing that is to be taken casually or without regard to the spiritual condition of ourselves or our church.
      1Co. 11:27 Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord.

       28 But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup.

       29 For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord's body.

       30 For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep.

Near Confrontation During House To House


2T3:16

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  • Independent Fundamental Baptist

Bro. Smith,

I understand completely what you are saying about the high-pressure sales tactics used in so many "soul-winning" programs. 

However, if done properly, the idea is to get to the point where you can have an impromptu "home Bible study" where you can carefully and methodically explain the need for salvation and the basis of salvation thoroughly.

 

The other thing door-to-door does for a Christian is it helps them overcome their natural fear of man, and become more bold in their witness throughout their normal life.  The hope for me as a pastor is that the exercise of going door-to-door will help them learn how to deal with a person on their own, and give them more encouragement and boldness to witness for Christ throughout their daily lives.  It is a training ground, more or less, particularly for the young Christian. 

So for me, our door-to-door program fulfills multiple purposes:

1.  We leave a Gospel tract and church flyer on every door - so the seed of the word of God is being sown.  Before anyone can be saved, they must have the seed of the word of God sown in their hearts.  So even if they choose not to speak with us, or they are not at home, at least they have an opportunity to read the Scriptures and be exposed to the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

2.  It is a training ground, as described above

3.  My instructions to our people is to not try to get a "1-2-3 pray after me" decision.  I would rather a lost sinner stew in his sins, realize the depths of his depravity, and then cry out to God for salvation on his own than get a false profession of faith.  But on occasion, we have seen some legitimate conversions through our door-to-door program, and even some new church members who were looking for such a church as ours.

 

So there is more "fruit" out there to be had than just souls being saved....and that is what I look at.

 

Having said all that, I fully agree with you that it is every Christian's job to witness on a regular basis in their own daily lives.  They should not limit their witnessing to ONLY the weekly door-to-door program.

 

In Christ,

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  • Independent Fundamental Baptist

My approach is typically to speak with people I see out and about, rather than to go to their door and bother them (which is almost the universal response anymore; an annoyed look, a quick dismissal, followed by a closed door). On the other hand, most of these same folks, if I see them outside (not while they are intently busy at something), whether at their home, the park, sidewalk or elsewhere, are much more friendly and open to conversation.

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I have had people answer naked.

Most of the time over here you end up putting it in the letterbox because there's no one home.
We had an american preacher visit and he was amazed at the number of houses we went to - because if someone did answer they said no and closed the door.
He said in his area that people were at least polite and chatted even if they weren't interested.

Here they don't mind being rude. :(

 

Sounds like up here.

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  • 1 month later...
  • Independent Fundamental Baptist

Door to door witnessing is a hard job but I have found it to very effective because most people fill more comfortable taking to you when they are at home. there will be the angry ones and all we can do is pray for them.I've been cussed out spit at and mocked.but I counted it as a joy.we are to out into the world and share the Gospel and the neighborhood is part of the world. BroSmith you're wrong about door to door witnessing it can be very effective. my first time out witnessing door to door I met a young lady that was dying with cancer that was lost ' but the glory be to God shes in heaven today because God loved her enough to send someone to witness to her.that same day I shared the Gospel with 30 lost people and prayed with some that where backsliding and they ended up coming to our church and getting their hearts right with God again.also through our bus ministry we had 70 teens get saved in one year. now that's biblical.


I also believe in witnessing to people in our travels at our jobs and any other place we have a chance to.I once met a man at the car wash that ask me for fifty cents we talked for awhile and God opened the door for me to share the Gospel with him but he rejected it. I gave him my phone number and told him if he ever wanted to know more about Jesus he could call me two days later he did and I ended up at his house on our knees praying and he got saved.

Our Lord Jesus was a witness that shared his love to those that were lost yet he was mocked was called names and threaten to be stone and in the end because of His love he was nailed to the cross for all that are lost sinners.
If we love the lost as our Lord Jesus did then He will make a way for us to witness His Gospel to the lost no matter where it maybe or how hard it may seem we will count it as a joy to suffer for Him.

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  • Independent Fundamental Baptist

Pastor steve I agree with your program I went through this type of training 20 years ago. thank you for having this program in your church because many churches have forgotten about about the backslider the lost and those that may need a new church to go to.

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  • 4 weeks later...
  • Independent Fundamental Baptist

First of all I would like to praise God that the man that led me to the Lord while going door-to-door didn't believe it was ineffective and useless!  I have been doing door-to-door witnessing now for over 20 years, the last 12 of which in an extremely difficult area of the Pacific Northwest.  I have been through it all over the years, "naked people answering, cursed, guns pointed, dog's turned on me, you name it" but I will still go because every once in a great while, we find that pearl of great price.  I can think of 5 very dear members/families of our church right now that were a direct result of door-to-door soul winning (please, I know it was the Lord that saved them not us, so calm down).  If there were only ONE member I could name it would have been worth it. 

 

There are limitations though that I follow: 

 

1.  I NEVER knock on a door with any kind of sign discouraging visitors.  Even just a "No Soliciting" sign though we are selling nothing.  

2.  I never enter an enclosed space to get at a door.  It is popular around here for people to have enclosed porches with a door to keep wild animals away from trash cans, pet food, shoes by the door, and such but I will not enter but will only leave a tract on the door.  Something you city slickers don't have to deal with but is a real issue in the small logging community in Oregon where I live. 

3.  I never go alone.

4.  I never talk to children when the parents are not home and know I am speaking to their child.  

5.  I will not allow the conversation at the door to stray from salvation.  If the person has a legitimate question, especially a concern that has made him angry with God, then I will do my best to answer the question and then quickly turn it to salvation.  In short, "if I don't strike oil within 20 minutes, I quit boring"

6.  If I can see that it is obviously a bad time because I can see them entertaining guests or sitting at the dinner table with family, I always ask if this is a good time to talk. We had one man visit who said, "I would have cursed them and slammed the door in their face, like I usually do, had they said who they were and why they were there, but they were so polite and courteous in considering my valuable time, I had to come check you guys out".  

 

Bro. Garry

In His will.  By His power.  For His glory.

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In my door to door experience [though not my forte, per se, yet, I'm more of an simplisitic person, bypassing doors altogether - computer screen let's me right in the homes, etc :) ] out where I live [well sorta], depending upon the neighbourhood, we get all classes of people, rich and poor [epescially in the apts, trailers, etc], old and young and all manner of religions, wiccan, islamic, buddhic, hindi, atheist and a wide variety of 'christianity'.

 

In one more middle scale neighbourhood [probably close to $400K to $1M+], what looked to be a 4 year old answered the door, and no one else around.  I crouched down to eye level, once I realized who opened the door, and gave the little person several DVD's and books and materials and basically said share these.  I figured, well, if the parents are gonna let the child answer the door all alone, when either they aren't home at all or not looking, they might at least come across their child attempting to play the DVD's.

 

The brother I was with, also walked up on two kids [probably teens 15ish] that were in a parked running vehicle, that were in the back seat all buckled up, while the door was wide open and no one else around [like I said, it was more more middle scale neighbourhood and parent probably ran back into the house for something], and practically scared them to death, they both looked at each other quietly and probably thinking he was about to hijack their parents vehicle with them in it [he's awesome Samoan, love my brother].  He said, "Hi Guys!" and handed them some DVD's and materials and they looked so relieved after he left.  I laughed so hard.

 

Most encounters were short, brief, thank you or no thank you, though a few turn into a conversation about who we are and what we're doing out and about and what the materials are all about.

 

On those particular outings, we tried to make sure everyone we visited got several DVD's, book, magazines, and other goodies, bookmarks, Bible study guides, sign up cards, etc.  if they didn't desire one thing, we tried to make sure they at least went back with something, even if it was just a webcard listing the various sites they could visit.  Though there are some that even turned that down.

 

That's when we would get them through mass mailing.  :)  Got the choice for everyone.  TV, Radio, Internet, Paper, Print, Billboard, Mailing, Bumpersticker, Decal, clothing, etc - global world-wide mission.

 

We generally went in teams [2-3's], about 12-14 of us together, and worked various areas and then all came back and talked about our God given encounters and providences and/or any Bible studies picked up.

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  • Independent Fundamental Baptist

I had little booklet written by John Rice about witnessing, he wrote about a time when he had approached a lady and begin to to speak with her about salvation,but the lady was rude and was asking him questions about bible stories she had heard about sex and murder and such.so he kindly ask her if she would do him one favor and let him show her some of what the bible had to say about salvation and if she would allow him this favor then he would answer all her questions she had about the bible. and she agreed to let him show her.he begin to read and show her scripture and her need of salvation and the holly spirit brought conviction upon her heart and it wasn't long before they were on their knees praying. afterwards he asked her if she would like for him to answer her questions for her and she replied to him that there was need for questions anymore that she now knew the truth. this one short story help to build my confidence when witnessing. thought I would share it.                                                                                                                             Jesus said unto him " I am the way, the truth, and the life; no man cometh unto the Father, but by me "  John 14:6    

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  • 6 months later...
  • Administrators

     I used the word "unbiblical" because the majority of independent fundamental Baptist preachers have this idea that you are sinning if you don't go out knocking on doors. I wouldn't necessarily say that door-to-door "soul winning" is wrong but I do believe that it is a bad substitute for how we are supposed to be witnessing. Another bad substitute is the bus ministry. These things become an end unto themselves. A Christian may have a bad testimony at work or never witness to his neighbours or co-workers. But if he goes out door knocking or works on a bus route then he gets the false assurance that he is being a good witness for Christ. Living a consistent Christian life before the world and then giving a verbal witness as opportunities arise is not only the best way of soul-winning but it is the Biblical way.

 

Sincerely,

Bro Steve Smith

brosmith@sonlightchristianradio.com

www.sonlightchristianradio.com

I'm new here and have been reading through quite a bit of this message board. It has been interesting reading. I just found this post by brosmith. I am in total agreement with it as he has posted it. In the church I was saved in we didn't go door knocking. One reason was that we were in a very small out of the way community, on a dead end road in Alaska. You can wear out your welcome very quickly in small communities like this.

 

Now that I live in the northwest I have been exposed to this that brosmith said. "Baptist preachers have this idea that you are sinning if you don't go out knocking on doors." This is totally foreign to me. My philosopy is and always has been, as brosmith said in another place, "Living a consistent Christian life before the world and then giving a verbal witness as opportunities arise is not only the best way of soul-winning but it is the Biblical way."

 

I am really disheartened by the salesmanship part of what I see spoken of as "soul winning" in a door to door environment, or even in a church environment when I see someone "leading someone to Christ." Salesmanship and high pressure tactics have no place in The Lord's work, it totally leaves out the work of The Holy Spirit.

 

I'm going to copy and paste something I got from a friend in email the other day. This speaks directly to this issue and reflects my views even before I read it. This was written by David Wells, who I do not know.

___________________________________________________

 

Soulwinning, Or Salesmanship?"
An Article by David Wells

 

"Do you believe you have ever done anything wrong, and that you are a sinner?"

"Yes."

"Do you believe that Jesus died on the cross to take away those sins?"

"Yes."

"Then will you bow your head with me, repeat a short prayer, and ask Jesus to come into your heart?"

"Yes."

(This is done.)

"Now, you are saved!"

"I am?"

"Yes, the Bible says you are saved. Don’t you believe the Bible?"

"Well, of course I do."

"Then you are saved, right?"

"Right."

 

At first look, the method and message of the above illustration might seem beyond criticism. As a vast throng of "personal soul winners" canvasses our land from door to door using the above method, it becomes very difficult to downgrade their zeal and enthusiasm. To their credit, it must be stated that they are certainly on the jOB. The enthusiasm, earnestness, and persuasiveness which this well-trained group of so-called "fundamentalists" exhibits is certainly admirable, to say the least.

However, is this zealousness and persuasiveness mis-directed? Is the method which is being used a scriptural method? Are the folks who are following the step by step instructions of the "soul winner" being genuinely saved?

 

This is a very delicate yet crucial prOBlem today in the world of Biblical Christianity as we know it. Several thought provoking questions and intricate situations are being brought to the attention of God's people everywhere. Certainly, a few of these conversions are genuine. It is the opinion of this writer, however, that the majority of these "decisions" for Christ do not pan out and are not genuine.

Where are all the converts? Where is all the fruit? As the hundreds and thousands of souls which are being saved are counted and recorded, where are they all going? Why is our land not in the midst of a great spiritual awakening and revival, rather than being in a downhill slide into sin and depravity? Could it be that instead of being born again, people are being stillborn as a result of slick salesmanship techniques? A closer study of the method of "easy-believism" certainly reveals to any rational believer that today's gospel has been watered down and grossly over-simplified.

 

What Is Missing? What Is Incorrect?

 

First of all, the Easy-believism type of evangelism usually does not emphasize genuine repentance toward God. No one can be saved without a recognition of sin toward God, and a repentance of turning away from that sin. It is quite OBvious that when someone is asked if they have ever done anything wrong, they are going to say, "Yes". However, to agree lightheartedly that you have erred, and to experience the convicting influence and power of the Holy Spirit are two completely different things! Until a person has experienced the Spirit relayed consciousness that he is a totally depraved sinner, he can never exercise a saving faith in Christ. It is absolute folly to tell an unconvicted sinner to merely believe in Jesus and expect him to be saved. Before a person can be saved, he has to realize that he is lost.

 

This conviction comes from the Holy Spirit. To sweeten the gospel for the sake of numbers by de-emphasizing the sinfulness of man is unscriptural and ungodly! For man to realize that he is exceedingly sinful, he must first be shown the exceeding sinfulness of sin. That conviction does not come, however, through a planned program of quick responses by way of rehearsed questions.

 

Conviction of sin comes when God's people preach and teach the power of repentance through the Holy Spirit. As the Holy Spirit convicts of sin, people are saved. My father used to tell me: "Son, a sinner can feel it in his head, and not believe it in his heart." His words are true yet today. A mental assent of sin is far different than a heart belief of conviction and sorrow toward that sin.

 

A second emphasis which is missing in the easy-believism, door-to-door method of soul winning is an acknowledgment of the Lordship of Christ. To coax someone into lightheartedly admitting that Jesus is Saviour is missing the target entirely. Jesus is first and foremost Lord, and then Saviour! As one falls at the feet of Christ, experiencing the conviction of the Holy Spirit and realizing the all encompassing Lordship of Christ, he is then in a position to accept Christ as Saviour. Easy believism leaves this out entirely. The sovereign Lordship of Christ is omitted and skipped completely, while the message of "only believe" is placed easily within one's grasp. Consequently, shallow and frivolous decisions are made, and the very crux of the gospel is left unsaid.

 

Thirdly, while the joy and wonderfulness of salvation is over emphasized, the easy-believism method totally ignores the terms of true discipleship. When one gets saved, life does not suddenly become one big joy ride into Heaven. The cost must be counted! The cross as well as the crown must be preached and taught. Genuine salvation does not produce a constant bed of roses. People should not be conned into thinking that it does, just in order to get them to make some sort of decision. Let it be said that a life of service for Christ will result in joy, peace, contentment, hope and purpose. Along with this, however, comes sacrifice, tears, anguish, persecution, and oftentimes death. Certainly, the genuine soul winner should make the potential convert aware of this fact. Not as a condition for salvation, but rather as a result of following Christ.

 

What is the result of all of this? People all across our land are believing, but they do not know what they are believing! The seed has not been sown properly, the doctrinal watering has not taken place, and God has not given the increase. Shallow decisions to "repeat the sinner's prayer" are being substituted for heart felt belief in the regenerating power of God. Listen: a slick smile, a hearty handshake, a manufactured speech, and a quick command for someone to bow their head and ask Jesus to come into their heart is not New Testament evangelism! People in the New Testament were never pressured into salvation. I challenge anyone to show me where they were! In all instances, the heart of the individual was prepared by the Holy Spirit through the teaching of God's Word, and a soul winner was then led to that person.

 

Of course, today's high powered soul winner hides behind the feeble excuse that if only one conversion in twenty is genuine, then we should rejoice in the fact that the one genuine convert is saved and on his way to Heaven. Are people actually that naive? If this reasoning is logical, then is it not logical to also say, "Okay, let's have twenty people line up against a wall. We'll take a gun and shoot at all twenty of them. However, if only one escapes with his life, we will rejoice in the fact that the one is alive, even though the other nineteen people may be dead!"

 

To take the unscripturally loaded gun of easy-believism and aim it at twenty people with the hope that maybe one will actually get saved is basically the same type of logic. What about the other nineteen? They have been deceived, are oftentimes bitter, have been given a false hope, and are usually on their way to hell by means of a false profession. They have been shot and killed by the gun of easy-believism.

 

It is time for many of us to re-evaluate our methods of soul winning. Time needs to be set aside to patiently teach people the gospel. The necessity for true repentance and faith in Christ needs to be the very foundation of our message. We then need to wait on and pray for the convicting power of the Holy Spirit. We then need to prayerfully and honestly lead them to the Lord. After a person gets saved, strong Baptist doctrine from God's Word needs to be taught and rooted into the life of the new child of God. Certainly, scriptural baptism needs to be taught and administered, and the new convert should be brought up as A new babe in Christ, in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.

Of course, by doing it this way, we may not have as many "decisions" for the Lord. It is my belief, however, that the majority of those who do believe will be genuine, and that New Testament evangelism will be more accurately followed and practiced.

________________________________

 

I am sorry for the length of this post. The copy and paste was lengthy. Thank you for this opportunity to participate.

 

May God bless you as you serve Him.

 

Jim

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There is no mention of "Holy Spirit conviction" in the Scriptures.


Jn 8:9
9 And they which heard it, being convicted by their own conscience, went out one by one, beginning at the eldest, even unto the last:and Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst.

This is the only appearance of the word in The Word.

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There are so many being given false assurance of heaven due to unbiblical, over simplistic, say it and be done with it, means of presenting "salvation".

 

So many people are walking around today with the false belief they will go to heaven when they die because they repeated a prayer, answered some guys questions rightly and they prayed for him, they were baptized, or they pray with a TV preacher every week.

 

All too often the false assurance these people have serves to harden their hearts to the Gospel, leaving them worse off than before.

 

What an amazing thing that a couple dozen "soul winners" from Church On The Corner each claim to have led over a hundred people to a "decision for Christ" yet not a one of those over 2,000 people who were supposedly saved are in that church. Moreover, those people are not to be found in any other church around either. That should be a very clear signal that something is very wrong with the "soul winning" those folks are engaged in.

 

Meanwhile, Joe shares the biblical Gospel with folks he meets each day. After a year of this two of those people are saved, baptized and being built up in Christ as members of Joe's church.

 

Joe's "numbers" look dismal compared to the Corner church folks "results". However, what serves the Lord, seeing two lost souls saved or declaring over 2,000 lost souls to be okay with God when they are as lost as ever?

 

Genuine salvation results in changed lives.

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There is no mention of "Holy Spirit conviction" in the Scriptures.


Jn 8:9
9 And they which heard it, being convicted by their own conscience, went out one by one, beginning at the eldest, even unto the last:and Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst.

This is the only appearance of the word in The Word.

 

First of all, conscience is nothing more than the manifestation of the law that is written into the hearts of all men. It is not the Holy Spirit.  

 

Now to address your claim that there is no mention of the Holy Spirit conviction I will provide just a few of the host of scriptures.

 

John 6:44 (KJV)
44  No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.

 

John 6:63 (KJV)
63  It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life.

 

John 6:65 (KJV

65  And he said, Therefore said I unto you, that no man can come unto me, except it were given unto him of my Father.

 

John 4:21-24 (KJV

21  Jesus saith unto her, Woman, believe me, the hour cometh, when ye shall neither in this mountain, nor yet at Jerusalem, worship the Father.
22  Ye worship ye know not what: we know what we worship: for salvation is of the Jews.
23  But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him.
24  God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.

 

Ephesians 4:4 (KJV)
4  There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling; 

 

Romans 8:30 (KJV)
30  Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified. 

 

2 Corinthians 3:18 (KJV)
18  But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord. 

 

Ephesians 2:21-22 (KJV)
21  In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord:
22  In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit. 

 

1 Peter 1:21-23 (KJV)
21  Who by him do believe in God, that raised him up from the dead, and gave him glory; that your faith and hope might be in God.
22  Seeing ye have purified your souls in OBeying the truth through the Spirit unto unfeigned love of the brethren, see that ye love one another with a pure heart fervently:
23  Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever. 

 

1 John 5:6 (KJV)
6  This is he that came by water and blood, even Jesus Christ; not by water only, but by water and blood. And it is the Spirit that beareth witness, because the Spirit is truth. 

 

There are many more but if this post gets much longer, no one will read it.

 

Bro. Garry

In His will.  By His power.  For His glory.

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I walked down the driveway to the house. A gentleman was outside. I greeted him and offered him the tract. He said "get off my property or I will call the police" , I said "yes sir" then to my back as I was leaving he yelled at me "I said get off my property or I will call the police" (he might have said "I'm calling the police"), ..... since I was already walking ... I stopped, turned around, said, "yes sir" ... and turned back around while he was yelling "I'm calling the police" and calmly walked off his property. What was my legal responsibility? Anybody suggest how to handle a situation like that?

Thanks.

I had two tell me very similar things last year (not the police part) but to get off the property and don't bother coming back.

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First of all, conscience is nothing more than the manifestation of the law that is written into the hearts of all men. It is not the Holy Spirit.

Now to address your claim that there is no mention of the Holy Spirit conviction I will provide just a few of the host of scriptures.

John 6:44 (KJV)
44 No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.

John 6:63 (KJV)
63 It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life.

John 6:65 (KJV)
65 And he said, Therefore said I unto you, that no man can come unto me, except it were given unto him of my Father.

John 4:21-24 (KJV)
21 Jesus saith unto her, Woman, believe me, the hour cometh, when ye shall neither in this mountain, nor yet at Jerusalem, worship the Father.
22 Ye worship ye know not what: we know what we worship: for salvation is of the Jews.
23 But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him.
24 God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.

Ephesians 4:4 (KJV)
4 There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling;

Romans 8:30 (KJV)
30 Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.

2 Corinthians 3:18 (KJV)
18 But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.

Ephesians 2:21-22 (KJV)
21 In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord:
22 In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit.

1 Peter 1:21-23 (KJV)
21 Who by him do believe in God, that raised him up from the dead, and gave him glory; that your faith and hope might be in God.
22 Seeing ye have purified your souls in OBeying the truth through the Spirit unto unfeigned love of the brethren, see that ye love one another with a pure heart fervently:
23 Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever.

1 John 5:6 (KJV)
6 This is he that came by water and blood, even Jesus Christ; not by water only, but by water and blood. And it is the Spirit that beareth witness, because the Spirit is truth.

There are many more but if this post gets much longer, no one will read it.

Bro. Garry
In His will. By His power. For His glory.

Too bad that you missed the point.

The word "conviction" means : 'to be declared guilty by a judge', and isn't found once in any of the verses in your long post.

So if you meant "leading", when you mistakenly said "conviction", than I agree with your post.

Remember, a convict is someone who serves a sentence, not someone who follows God.
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Too bad that you missed the point.

The word "conviction" means : 'to be declared guilty by a judge', and isn't found once in any of the verses in your long post.

So if you meant "leading", when you mistakenly said "conviction", than I agree with your post.

Remember, a convict is someone who serves a sentence, not someone who follows God.

 

conviction

 

/kənˈvɪkʃən/
noun 
1.
the state or appearance of being convinced
2.
a fixed or firmly held belief, opinion, etc
3.
the act of convincing
4.
the act or an instance of convicting or the state of being convicted
5.
carry conviction, to be convincing.
 
Your using the 4th definition only, while I use the term conviction just as I would when finding a principle in God's word, I form a "conviction" (definition 2).  The Holy Spirits "leading" as you state it, I use the Holy Spirit convicting us (definition 3) until we attain definition number 1, the state of being convinced.
 
I can't find a single reference in God's word where "conviction" or even "convict" was ever used.  When I use the term, it is a man made term that is not found anywhere in the bible, and I am using it according to it's primary definitions.  
 
That said, I still hold to my belief that the Holy Spirit office is for conviction of the heart to a belief or conviction (fixed or firmly held belief)  in the God's Word.
 
Bro. Garry 
 
 
 
 
 
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John 14:26 But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.

 

John 16:7,8,9,10,11 

Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you.

And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment:

Of sin, because they believe not on me;

Of righteousness, because I go to my Father, and ye see me no more;

Of judgment, because the prince of this world is judged.

 

 

"reprove" or ἐλέγχω

to convict, refute, confute
generally with a suggestion of shame of the person convicted
by conviction to bring to the light, to expose
to find fault with, correct
by word
to reprehend severely, chide, admonish, reprove
to call to account, show one his fault, demand an explanation
by deed
to chasten, to punish
The KJV translates ἐλέγχω in the following manner: reprove (6x), rebuke (5x), convince (4x), tell (one's) fault (1x), convict (1x).
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My primary door-to-door is not to try specifically to get people saved-I have had far too many ineffective supposed 'conversions' that way. But what I WILL do is go out to give small tracts, often about our churc, with the gospel on them, and just let them know we are here-some are more responsive to that. I also make myself available to Bible studied if people desire them-I notice this seems to work well with the JW's and LDS, why shouldn't we do that?

 

Mostly, though I just let them know we are here-after all, everyone needs a church at least twice in life: once for marrying and once for burying.

 

In our little town, though, it only takes about two or three good weekends to hit every house, so its not a year-round thing, else we become tiring to them.

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Don't know how this applies but it comes to mind.

 

my Pastor told me this.

 

He knows an evangelist that goes to India every year and has Tent Evangelistic meetings.

 

Well one of the indians invited his neighbor to come. he said "You gotta come hear all about Jesus"

 

the guy responded with "I am Muslim and I will not come, do not ask me again"

 

the next day he invited him again, he said im telling you that you have to come hear about Jesus.

 

the muslim responded "I told you I am a muslim, I don't believe in the same Jesus you believe in, if you ask me again I am going to kill you."

 

the next day he invited him one more time, the man said "I told you if you invited me that I was going to kill you, if you are willing to die for this Jesus, than I will come and hear about him."

 

he came that night and got saved.

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