How Much is Too Much?
Is it possible to overstate a fundamental Biblical truth? In other words, is it conceivable that we could focus too much on one particular aspect of our faith?
My initial reaction to that question would be, “of course not!” God’s truth is indisputable and indispensable — it never gets old or overexposed.
On the other hand, might it be wise to mix in a variety of other topics to provide a greater breadth of exposure to His Sacred Word? Of course it would!
This message hit home with me recently when someone who watches our services online suggested that my call to invite others to church was beginning to wear thin, and that perhaps I should consider moving on to another theme or topic.
I was not at all offended. In fact, I appreciated the feedback, and it reminded me of a former pastor who spoke almost every week on the topic of salvation. On the one hand, there is nothing more important than committing oneself to Christ. On the other hand, once we have made that commitment, what comes next? How can we further enhance our relationship with Him and our service to Him?
The fact of the matter is that the importance of salvation and evangelism cannot be minimized. After all, they are two of the most important tenets of our faith, and they are inexorably linked with one another.
In the 15th chapter of Romans, Paul emphasized the importance of reaching out to others when he said in verses 5-7, “ May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you the same attitude of mind toward each other that Christ Jesus had, so that with one mind and one voice you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God.”
Indeed, acceptance is the first step in bringing others to Christ. We may not know, understand, agree with, or even like our neighbor, but we are encouraged — actually commanded — to love our neighbor (and even our enemy) and to share our faith with him or her.
The next step in the process would be to invite them into fellowship with us by asking them to join us for worship one Sunday morning, especially if they do not have a church of their own. Such an invitation benefits both parties. For the individual, it is an opportunity of find a church home. For the church, it is an opportunity to grow and expand its ministry.
In the 16th chapter of the Gospel of Mark, Jesus said, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.” We don’t have to go quite that far. There are plenty of people in Jefferson, Wooster, and Wayne County who could benefit greatly from having a place to worship and fellowship, and I can’t think of a better place than Oak Chapel.
So, I probably shouldn’t stop encouraging you to invite others to our church, but I may tone it down a bit, at least for a while, because you have done great work in reaching out and letting others know that they are always welcome here. After all, God wants all of us to know Him and to make Him known.
Until we meet again, Be Blessed! – Pastor John