Are those who evangelize special among the children of God? Not quite. In fact, some of them have disqualified themselves from Christ’s kingdom with their pride-filled, self-righteous hearts.
WHO is getting the glory in our evangelism efforts?
“That no flesh should glory in his presence. 30 But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption: 31 That, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord.” 1 Corinthians 1:29-31
Karen Graves notes: “I never read in the Bible there was more bang for my buck on the streets. I think it says go into all the earth and preach the gospel.”
EXACTLY Karen Graves! What matters is the souls of men, not their geographical location!
In our obedience to do the Great Commission Jesus gave us to do, we must realize that it’s only the LORD Himself who can add souls/saints to His church.
“I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase. 7 So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase. 8 Now he that planteth and he that watereth are one: and every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour. 9 For we are labourers together with God: ye are God’s husbandry, ye are God’s building.” 1 Corinthians 3:6-9
If the great apostle Paul had no reason to boast in himself concerning the spread of Christ’s Gospel, certainly none of us do.
LOTS of self-proclaimed evangelistic “heroes” in our midst. Have you noticed that some are very proud of themselves for evangelizing? God is not impressed that you’ve done what He told you to do – including in seeking to win the lost. Yet, you are no better than any other child of God because you evangelize. To think you are superior reveals just how much true Christian maturity you have need of (Hebrews 5:11-6:3).
Those who have hearts filled with self-worshiping pride because they evangelize have no eternal reward or reward from God at all.
“Take heed that ye do not your alms before men, to be seen of them: otherwise ye have no reward of your Father which is in heaven. 2 Therefore when thou doest thine alms, do not sound a trumpet before thee, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward. 3 But when thou doest alms, let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth: 4 That thine alms may be in secret: and thy Father which seeth in secret himself shall reward thee openly.” Matthew 6:1-4
Such pride-filled, self-righteous people who draw attention to their own evangelism efforts, don’t have a soul winning spirit at all. They love self instead of the Savior and sinners. Pride is sinful corruption and exudes like a perfume – you can’t see it but you sense it. In fact, I’ve had the pleasure of asking many of these pride-filled evangelistic “heroes” this simple question: “How many lost souls have you actually won to Jesus? Or, are you just condescendingly yelling at people? Are you walking in God’s wisdom and love to actually WIN them into Christ’s kingdom? Do you preach AT people or TO people?”
“The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life; and he that winneth souls is wise.” Proverbs 11:30
We must be possessed with divine wisdom in order to actually see someone come into Christ (James 3:17-18). This takes the cross. Notice that it takes divine wisdom to win a soul into the kingdom of God – “he that winneth souls is wise.” Think about that one. Do those who have this nasty, unloving heart actually draw men to Jesus or deter them from Him? Are they winsome as Christ was?
“Seems that some people are counting on what they have done for the Lord. They are relying on how many they have evangelized in order to be saved themselves – instead of trusting in Christ alone and the perfect work of redemption He did. We must remember that we just sow the seed, but God brings the harvest (1 Cor. 3:6-9). Let’s give God the credit and not ourselves. It doesn’t matter how many people you lead to Christ, what’s important is, you do your part to spread the Good News of the Gospel, and follow the great commission Christ commanded you to do. Our job is to evangelize. Let God do the counting.” Rich Brown
“As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, ESPECIALLY unto them who are of the household of faith.” Galatians 6:10
“But which of you, having a servant plowing or feeding cattle, will say unto him by and by, when he is come from the field, Go and sit down to meat? 8 And will not rather say unto him, Make ready wherewith I may sup, and gird thyself, and serve me, till I have eaten and drunken; and afterward thou shalt eat and drink? 9 Doth he thank that servant because he did the things that were commanded him? I trow not. 10 So likewise ye, when ye shall have done all those things which are commanded you, say, We are unprofitable servants: we have done that which was our duty to do.” Luke 17:7-10
A life of prayer is essential to a God-fearing heart that is full of God’s love and wisdom and therefore able to communicate His truth in a way that pleases the LORD .
“Continue in prayer, and watch in the same with thanksgiving; 3 Withal praying also for us, that God would open unto us a door of utterance, to speak the mystery of Christ, for which I am also in bonds: 4 That I may make it manifest, as I ought to speak. 5 Walk in wisdom toward them that are without, redeeming the time. 6 Let your speech be alway with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man.” Colossians 4:2-6
Where is this disciple (writer) coming from in this post? Well, he’s a nothing and can do nothing without Jesus (John 15:5). He’s been doing street ministry and writing soul winning Gospel tracts that have reached sinners the world over since 1987 and has written a highly inspirational book on the topic. Still ministers in that capacity in part.