Monday Hindsight on Sunday’s Sermon – I Hope No One Concluded…
We started a new sermon series yesterday and through the first sermon I wanted to communicate that one of the reasons we don’t speak of Jesus and share the gospel with more frequency is because we have a low view of God. We are not amazed by the presence of God.
So from Exodus 3:1-10, the 46th Psalm and Isaiah 6:1-9, I explained and concluded that “in every case, an unsettling encounter with God of awe and wonder preceded mission to others.” And after delivering the message two times, I felt pretty good about it.
Then came Monday morning, and I thought, “Oh no! I hope no one thought this…”
You can hear the sermon by clicking HERE and the sermon series is called Speaking of Jesus.
Here it is. Here is one implication that I would not want someone to draw based on what I meant.
I would not want someone to conclude they need an awe moment, or a regular awe moment to obey! Sometimes people say really strange and unbiblical things like, “I need to pray about whether or not I need to be a part of missions, or whether I need to speak about Jesus to others.” In other words, they spiritualize to excuse their decision not to trust and obey. A person might need to pray for help to do those things in the strength that God supplies, but they surely don’t need to pray about whether they should do those things.
The Bible is clear that some things are the will of God for everybody, and proclaiming the message of Jesus is one of them.
I would be horrified if someone came away from yesterday thinking, “I should wait to share the gospel until I have some sort of close encounter with God. That’s not what I meant or mean.
What I meant to say or want to say is this: Our lack of speaking of Jesus is very likely proportionate to the wonder we have, or don’t have, in response to God. I believe strongly that one of the reasons we don’t speak confidently about Jesus is because we see God as little and not awe-inspiring. People who have true wonder of God and awe for God, tend to be worshiping and obedient people. They tend to be people who delight to praise the God who captivates them.
Another way to say it is that our evangelism problem is a theology problem. Like looking through a microscope, we look at God through the lens of the world and believe God to be little. Instead, like looking through a telescope, we should have have been looking at the world through the lens of God’s word that we might see Him as He really is: BIG!
Not only do we see this in in the three aforementioned passages, but we see it in Acts 2:41-43, as well as, in Paul’s conversion, his thereafter life and his epistles. The example and call to reverence and awe (Heb. 12:28) of God is all over the Spirit-inspired word and I believe it is closely tied to the desire to speak of Jesus regularly.
Amazingly, many of us who claim to be saved by grace through faith in Christ alone, have a low view of God and we are not amazed by the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords. Ergo, we don’t speak much of Him. Can that be anything but wrong?
A.W. Tozer wrote, “Low views of God destroy the gospel for all who hold them.” He is certainly right!