Leaven-Like


Evangelism





HARVESTIME INTERNATIONAL INSTITUTE


This course is part of the Harvestime International Institute, a program designed to equip believers for effective spiritual harvest.


The basic theme of the training is to teach what Jesus taught, that which took men who were fishermen, tax collectors, etc., and changed them into reproductive Christians who reached their world with the Gospel in a demonstration of power.


This manual is a single course in one of several modules of curriculum which moves believers from visualizing through deputizing, multiplying, organizing, and mobilizing to achieve the goal of evangelizing.


For further information on additional courses write:


Harvestime International Institute

3092 Sultana Dr.

Madera, California 93637

U.S.A.




© Harvestime International Institute




TABLE OF CONTENTS



How To Use This Manual      .           .           .           .           .           .           .           .           I

Suggestions For Group Study.           .           .           .           .           .           .           II

Introduction    .           .           .           .           .           .           .           .           .           .           1

Course Objectives      .           .           .           .           .           .           .           .           .           3



PART ONE: GO

 

Introduction To Part One                            .           .           .           .           .           .           ..4

 

1.         Leaven-Like Evangelism        .           .           .           .           .           .           .           5

2.         The Mandate  .           .           .           .           .           .           .           .           .           16

3.         The Message  .           .           .           .           .           .           .           .           .           26

4.         The Messengers          .           .           .           .           .           .           .           .           35

5.         Communicating The Message.           .           .           .           .           .           45

6.         Recipients Of The Message    .           .           .           .           .           .           .           51

7.         The Methods: New Testament Principles      .           .           .           .           .           62

8.         The Methods: New Testament Parables        .           .           .           .           .           73

9.         The Methods: Personal Evangelism  .           .           .           .           .           81

10.       The Methods: Dealing With Difficulties       .           .           .           .           .           93

11.       The Methods: Saturation Evangelism.          .           .           .           .           100

12.       The Methods: Mass Evangelism       .           .           .           .           .           .           110

13.       Decisions Or Disciples?         .           .           .           .           .           .           .           130

14.       Planning For Evangelism       .           .           .           .           .           .           .           142

15.       Networking For Evangelism  .           .           .           .           .           .           .           149



PART TWO: AS YOU GO

 

Introduction To Part Two.                          .           .           .           .           .           .           ..159


16.       An Introduction To Healing And Deliverance.          .           .           .           160

17.       Variables That Affect Healing.          .           .           .           .           .           188

18.       "As You Go, Heal"     .           .           .           .           .           .           .           .           210

19.       "As You Go, Deliver".           .           .           .           .           .           .           226







PART THREE: WHILE YOU ARE THERE



Introduction To Part Three                                     .           .           .           .           .           .            .           263


20.       Church Planting: The Model  .           .           .           .           .           .           265

21.       Church Planting: The Methods           .           .           .           .           .           .           271

22.       Church Planting: The Multiplication  .           .           .           .           .           289



 

APPENDIX: A Final Word.             .           .           .           .           .           .           .           298


Answers To Self-Tests.          .           .           .           .           .           .           .           301






























HOW TO USE THIS MANUAL




MANUAL FORMAT


Each lesson consists of:


Objectives: These are the goals you should achieve by studying the chapter. Read them before starting the lesson.


Key Verse: This verse emphasizes the main concept of the chapter. Memorize it.


Chapter Content: Study each section. Use your Bible to look up any references not printed in the manual.


Self-Test: Take this test after you finish studying the chapter. Try to answer the questions without using your Bible or this manual. When you have concluded the Self-Test, check your answers in the answer section provided at the end of the book.


For Further Study: This section will help you continue your study of the Word of God, improve your study skills, and apply what you have learned to your life and ministry.


Final Examination: If you are enrolled in this course for credit, you received a final examination along with this course. Upon conclusion of this course, you should complete this examination and return it for grading as instructed.




ADDITIONAL MATERIALS NEEDED


You will need a King James version of the Bible.




I







SUGGESTIONS FOR GROUP STUDY


FIRST MEETING


Opening: Open with prayer and introductions. Get acquainted and register the students.


Establish Group Procedures: Determine who will lead the meetings, the time, place, and dates for the sessions.


Praise And Worship: Invite the presence of the Holy Spirit into your training session.


Distribute Manuals To Students: Introduce the manual title, format, and course objectives provided in the first few pages of the manual.


Make The First Assignment: Students will read the chapters assigned and take the Self-Tests prior to the next meeting. The number of chapters you cover per meeting will depend on chapter length, content, and the abilities of your group.


SECOND AND FOLLOWING MEETINGS


Opening: Pray. Welcome and register any new students and give them a manual. Take attendance. Have a time of praise and worship.


Review: Present a brief summary of what you studied at the last meeting.


Lesson: Discuss each section of the chapter using the HEADINGS IN CAPITAL BOLD FACED LETTERS as a teaching outline. Ask students for questions or comments on what they have studied. Apply the lesson to the lives and ministries of your students.


Self-Test: Review the Self-Tests students have completed. (Note: If you do not want the students to have access to the answers to the Self-Tests, you may remove the answer pages from the back of each manual.)


For Further Study: You may do these projects on a group or individual basis.


Final Examination: If your group is enrolled in this course for credit, you received a final examination with this course. Reproduce a copy for each student and administer the exam upon conclusion of this course.


II




MODULE:    Evangelizing

COURSE:      Leaven-like Evangelism



INTRODUCTION



            -Almost two-thirds of the world's population has never heard the Gospel message.

            -Over a thousand people groups have never been penetrated for the Lord Jesus Christ.

            -Many tribes have never received their first missionary.

            -There are approximately 1,700 languages without the written Word of God.

            -The world's population will double in less than 50 years.


When we think of statistics like these in terms of fulfilling the Great Commission of Jesus Christ to take the Gospel of the Kingdom of God to every creature, we realize we are faced with a great task. This course is written to mobilize and equip believers to fulfill this great challenge. It is a tremendous task, but it is not impossible.


Most courses on evangelism focus only on the command to "go" into all the world with the Gospel. They emphasize preaching and teaching the Gospel message. This course differs because it also focuses on what Jesus said to do "as you go" and the New Testament Church pattern of what to do "while you are there." The course is divided into three sections:


Part One is entitled "Go." It focuses on the mandate given by Jesus to preach the Gospel of the Kingdom of God to all creatures. It includes instruction on the message to be shared, the messengers, how to communicate the Gospel, and the recipients of the message. Methods of evangelism are also taught, with emphasis on those used in New Testament times. Both personal and mass evangelism methods are discussed, with specific instruction on how to deal with difficulties and the follow-up care of new converts. Instruction also is given on planning and mobilizing spiritual resources and networking with others for evangelism.


Part Two is entitled "As you go." In the New Testament Gospels, Jesus never commissioned anyone to preach the Gospel without also commanding them to minister healing and deliverance. He told them "As you go...heal the sick, cast out demons . . ." (Matthew 10:1,7-8). As the multitudes came for healing and deliverance, the spiritual harvest began to multiply so rapidly that new laborers were required. It was not long until 70 more disciples were needed and were sent out to preach, teach, heal, and deliver. It was this demonstration of power "as they went" that resulted in the rapid spread of the Gospel throughout the world. For this reason, Part Two of this course focuses on the healing and deliverance ministry that is to accompany the preaching and teaching of the Gospel.


Part Three focuses on the pattern revealed by the New Testament Church of what to do "while you are there." It proposes that evangelism is not complete unless a church is planted among a group of new believers. Evangelism without establishing local churches is like bringing children into the world and not claiming responsibility for their subsequent care. A person should not be considered "evangelized" until he becomes a functioning part of a local church fellowship. To accomplish this, there must be a local church. An area should not be considered evangelized until a church is planted.


This three-part approach to evangelism is called "leaven-like evangelism" because it will spread the Gospel throughout the world rapidly even as leaven permeates a lump of bread dough. The leaven may be small and hidden, but its impact is unlimited.





























_______________


Note: This course is the final course in the last module of training in the core course series offered by Harvestime International Institute. "A Final Word" in the Appendix of this manual explains how to obtain a certificate of achievement for completing these courses.



COURSE OBJECTIVES



Upon completion of this course you will be able to:


-Define leaven-like evangelism.

-Explain the mandate of evangelism.

-Summarize the message of evangelism.

-Identify the messengers of evangelism.

-Identify the recipients of the message.

-Communicate the Gospel to others.

-Summarize New Testament principles of evangelism.

-Summarize New Testament parables of evangelism.

-Do personal evangelism.

-Deal with difficulties you encounter in evangelism.

-Reach an entire area by saturation evangelism.

-Conduct mass evangelism.

-Follow up new converts.

-Make plans for evangelism.

-Network with others for evangelism.

-Summarize what the Bible teaches about healing and deliverance.

-Explain variables that affect healing.

-"As you go, heal."

-"As you go, deliver."

-Describe the New Testament model for church planting.

-Follow New Testament methods to plant churches.

-Follow New Testament methods to multiply churches.


















INTRODUCTION TO PART ONE





"GO"



Part One focuses on the command to "go" into all the world and evangelize every living creature.


In this section you will learn about the mandate given by Jesus to preach the Gospel of the Kingdom and receive instruction on the message to be shared, the messengers of the Gospel, how to communicate the Gospel, and to whom it is to be communicated.


You will learn many methods of evangelism, with emphasis on those used in New Testament times. Both personal and mass evangelism methods are discussed, with specific instruction on how to deal with difficulties in evangelizing and the follow-up care of new converts.


Instruction is also given on planning and networking with others for the purpose of evangelism.


And now . . . are you ready to "GO"?










CHAPTER ONE


LEAVEN-LIKE EVANGELISM



OBJECTIVES:


Upon completion of this chapter you will be able to:


-Write the Key Verses from memory.

-Define "leaven-like evangelism."

-Explain "the definition of the lost."

-Explain "the destiny of the lost."

-Identify six steps in the evangelism process.


KEY VERSES:

 

And again He said, Whereunto shall I liken the Kingdom of God?

 

It is like leaven, which a woman took and hid in three measures of meal, till the whole was leavened. (Luke 13:20-21)


INTRODUCTION


This lesson discusses the need for evangelism, explains the process of evangelism, and defines terms that are important for you to understand as you begin your study of this subject. In Old Testament times when the temple was built, the sound of a hammer, axe, or any tool of iron was not heard while it was being constructed (I Kings 6:7).


The silence with which those great natural stones were put into place is a natural example of a great spiritual truth. A "greater than Solomon" is now building a greater spiritual temple. This spiritual temple is made up of "living stones" being laid by the Lord Jesus Christ. This temple also is being erected silently, with each stone perfectly fitted together. It is occurring through the silent but powerful process of "leaven-like evangelism."


LEAVEN-LIKE EVANGELISM

 

And again He said, Whereunto shall I liken the Kingdom of God?

 

It is like leaven, which a woman took and hid in three measures of meal, till the whole was leavened. (Luke 13:20-21)


This passage reveals that God's work does not proceed with a lot of clamor and publicity. You might expect the Kingdom to spread by external means like subduing armies and conquering continents. But the spreading of the Kingdom of God is as leaven in a lump of bread dough. The leaven may be small and hidden, but it has unlimited potential. Like leaven, the power of the Kingdom is not external but rather internal.


In another example, Jesus compared the spread of the Kingdom of God to a mustard seed:

 

. . . Unto what is the Kingdom of God like? and whereunto shall I resemble it?

 

It is like a grain of mustard seed, which a man took, and cast into his garden, and it grew and waxed a great tree; and the fowls of the air lodged in the branches of it. (Luke 13:18-19)


In a previous parable, Jesus compared faith to a mustard seed. He said nothing was impossible with even a small amount of faith. Similar to the way leaven spreads, a tiny mustard seed develops into a great tree. This example also illustrates the silent, yet powerfully effective way the Kingdom advances.


There are many new methods that can assist in spreading the Gospel. These are called "technology." They include things such as printing presses, computers, radios, televisions, audio and video tapes, and satellites. New methods of transportation also help people travel rapidly to spread the Gospel. These new technologies are all useful but the real power of the Gospel is still internal. By this we mean the power is in the Gospel itself. This is what the parables of the leaven and the mustard seed illustrate.


The Gospel of the Kingdom of God will multiply to spread throughout the whole "lump" of the world because of the internal power of the Kingdom which is like leaven in bread dough. This means that the extension of the Gospel is not limited where people do not have advanced technology. With even a small amount of faith, the Kingdom will advance. This is leaven-like evangelism.


THE DEFINITION OF EVANGELISM


The word for "evangelism" (or "evangelization") comes from a Greek word "evangelion." There are actually four forms of this basic word. One word means "good news," two words mean "to

proclaim the good news," and one refers to the "evangelist" or person doing the proclaiming.


Evangelism is not just a series of meetings or church services. Evangelism is not the same as revival. Revival is the Lord at work in the Church. In revival, the emphasis is on the presence of the Lord restoring life to His people.


Evangelism is the church at work for the Lord. In evangelism the emphasis is on the new birth experience, the beginning of spiritual life. The renewal resulting from revival, however, sets in motion the forces of evangelism which result in "new creatures in Christ" so the two are tightly linked together in terms of spiritual life.


Evangelism is:

 

. . . "communicating the Gospel through the power of the Holy Spirit in such a way that men and women have valid opportunity to accept Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord and become responsible members of His Church."


Let us examine this definition in detail. The "Gospel" is the message to be communicated. The basic Gospel message is summarized in I Corinthians 15:1-5, but the "Gospel of the Kingdom" actually includes all that Jesus taught (Matthew 28:18-20). Biblical conversion is brought about by truth. The Gospel is an encounter between truth and unrighteousness, Christ and sinners, and Heaven and Hell.


It is the Gospel of the Kingdom of God which is to be shared, not the traditions of man or denominational beliefs. The goal is not to attack political systems or other religions. The goal is not to change society, but to see people changed through the power of the Gospel.


The goal is not even the "good works" of educational, medical, or care and feeding programs. These things are beneficial in fulfilling the Great Commission only as they are done within the context of evangelism. The presentation of the Gospel must be the end goal or they become only social programs.


Jesus ministered to the physical needs of people in the feeding of the multitudes, healing, and deliverance. But these works were done within the context of evangelizing. They were accompanied by the teaching and preaching of the Gospel.


To "communicate the Gospel” means that it must be shared in a way that leads to people accepting Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord. When you share the Gospel in this way, you are evangelizing. If you are to evangelize, you must be in contact with those who are spiritually lost in sin, so evangelism must take place out where the sinners are.


"Through the power of the Holy Spirit" means that the message must be communicated not only verbally, but through the demonstration of power. Paul said:

 

And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man's wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power;

 

That your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God. (I Corinthians 2:4-5)


"Through the power of the Holy Spirit" also means that the anointing of the Holy Spirit must be upon the communication of the Gospel, for it takes the work of the Spirit to win converts:

 

No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him. . . (John 6:44)


"Accepting" means that the hearer responds to the message. Information without invitation is instruction. It is exhortation, but it is not evangelism. In true evangelism, there must be an opportunity for response. Giving someone your testimony of conversion is a method of evangelism called witnessing, but it is not evangelism. Witnessing is not winning. Witnessing is important, but it does not assure salvation. True evangelism means introducing people to Christ in such a way that they will see the necessity of a personal decision. Evangelism results in the born again experience which is also called "conversion" or "salvation."


"Accepting Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord" means not only a response to receive salvation, but a process which leads to Jesus becoming Lord of a person's life. This implies that the new convert moves on into discipleship becoming a responsible member of the Church. Note that it is "His Church," meaning the true Body of Christ, not just a specific denomination or organization.


A "valid opportunity" means the message must be sustained long enough in a way that can be understood by an average person. This means communication must be adapted to the language, educational, and cultural levels of an individual. This also means that we cannot conclude that a person or village has been evangelized simply because we preached there one time. The witness must be sustained long enough that understanding and opportunity for response results. Individuals, a family, tribe, or nation can be said to have been evangelized when they have come into contact with the Gospel enough to have had opportunity to respond to it by faith. This "valid opportunity" also implies a powerful message which provides opportunity for people to see the visible demonstration of the Gospel through healing and deliverance.


THE NEED FOR EVANGELISM


Why does the world need to be evangelized? To answer this question you must understand two things: The definition and the destiny of the lost.


DEFINITION OF THE LOST:


Read about the creation of the world and man in Genesis chapters l and 2. Then read Genesis 3 about how sin entered the world. When Adam and Eve were first created, they had a perfect sinless nature. After they sinned that nature was corrupted. As Adam and Eve began to reproduce and have children, these new additions to the human race were born with a basic sin nature. Man was no longer good as God had created him. His natural thought and action patterns were evil.


Genesis 4:1-6:4 describes the pattern of sin as it began to spread throughout the world. These chapters record the first murder, the first lie, and how the wickedness of man grew until every thought, as well as action, was evil. Finally, the whole world was so sinful that God actually repented that He had made man (Genesis 6:5-6).


Because of the rapid growth of sin, God decided to destroy the earth with a flood but saved one righteous man, Noah, and his family. (Read the story of Noah and the flood in Genesis 6:8-9:17.) After the flood, Noah's family began to reproduce. Almost immediately, the pattern of sin reoccurred. This is why all people everywhere are called "sinners":

 

For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God. (Romans 3:23)


All people who have not repented of sin and experienced the new birth described by Jesus in John chapter 3 are considered "lost" because they have lost the sinless nature with which God originally created man. We may also say they are "unsaved" or "unbelievers" because they have not been saved from their sins through believing in the Lord Jesus Christ as Savior.


DESTINY OF THE LOST:


Because of the original sin of Adam and Eve, death entered into the world and because of this eventually everyone dies physically. After physical death comes judgment:

 

And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment. (Hebrews 9:27)


After death, we will stand before God for judgment. People who have not repented of their sins will face a second death. They will die the "spiritual death" of eternal separation from God. Their destiny is Hell:

 

For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. (Romans 6:23)

 

And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened; and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works. . .

 

And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire. (Revelation 20:12, 15)


When you really understand the destiny of the lost, you realize the urgent need for evangelism. If people are not reached with the Gospel, they will die in sin and be destined for eternity in Hell.


THE PROCESS OF EVANGELISM


Evangelism is a process that includes the presence and proclamation of the Gospel, persuasion, planting, and participation. Let us examine this process:


PRESENCE:


"Presence" evangelism is that which radiates the qualities of Jesus through demonstrating Christian character and concern. The world will not be reached for Jesus without an authentic Christian presence. Believers must learn to build relationships, identify with, and serve unbelievers. You cannot win sinners if you have no contact with them.


PROCLAMATION:


Many believers remain "secret-service" Christians, so to speak. They think their presence among unbelievers is enough to fulfill the Great Commission to evangelize the world. But the command of Jesus is that we verbally communicate the Gospel through preaching, teaching, and witnessing. We must also demonstrate the power of the Gospel through healing and deliverance. These are ways the Gospel is proclaimed.


PERSUASION:


Proclamation of the Gospel does not end the process of evangelism. The Gospel must be presented in such a way that people are persuaded to become believers in the Lord Jesus Christ.

 

PLANTING:


The new convert who has been persuaded to follow Jesus must then be "planted" in a local church fellowship or a church must be "planted" among a group of new believers.


PERFECTION:


As a result of this planting, converts mature spiritually as discipling is accomplished within the context of the local church. (Spiritual maturity is called "perfection" in the Bible).


PARTICIPATION:


The process of evangelism is complete when new believers become active in the task of evangelism themselves and begin to reproduce spiritually.






SELF-TEST


1. Write the Key Verses from memory.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


2. Define "leaven-like evangelism."


_______________________________________________________________________________


3. What is meant by "the definition of the lost"?


_______________________________________________________________________________


4. What is meant by "the destiny of the lost"?


_______________________________________________________________________________


5. List six steps in the evangelism process.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________






(Answers tests are provided at the conclusion of the final chapter in this manual.)





FOR FURTHER STUDY


1. In this introductory chapter you were introduced to the definition of "evangelism":

 

Evangelism: Evangelism is communicating the Gospel through the power of the Holy Spirit in such a way that men and women have valid opportunity to accept Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord and become responsible members of His Church.


Here are some other terms with which you should be familiar:


Evangelize Or Evangelizing:


These terms are used for the process of doing the work of evangelism.


Evangelized:


Individuals, a family, tribe, or nation can be said to have been evangelized when they have come into contact with the Gospel long enough to have had an opportunity to respond to it by faith. The completed process of evangelization includes integrating a convert into a local church fellowship or the planting of a church among a group of new believers.


Evangelist:


An evangelist has a special leadership gift from God which is an ability to share the Gospel with unbelievers in a way that men and women respond and become responsible members of the body of Christ. The meaning of the word "evangelist" is "one who brings good news." Although all believers do not have the special leadership gift of being an evangelist, all are to do the work of an evangelist.


Witnessing:


A believer telling an unsaved person about his personal experience with Jesus Christ.


Personal Evangelism:


Personal evangelism is an individual believer communicating the Gospel to an unsaved person.


Mass Evangelism:


Mass evangelism is also called "group" evangelism. It is communicating the Gospel to a group of people. It includes such activities as mass crusades, evangelistic rallies, and Gospel concerts.


Lay Evangelism:


This term refers to any evangelistic work done by laymen (people who are not in full-time leadership positions in the church).


Saturation Evangelism:


Saturation evangelism refers to "saturating" a certain geographic area so every person is reached with the Gospel.


Convert:


A convert is a person who has accepted Jesus Christ as Savior. He has been converted from his old life of sin to new life in Jesus.


Disciple:


A disciple is a convert who is established in the basics of the Christian faith and capable of raising up new converts and discipling them. The word "disciple" means a learner, a pupil, someone who learns by following.


Follow Up:


Follow up is the process of training new converts and bringing them to maturity in Christ, resulting in spiritual stability, growth, and reproduction. This is also called "discipleship" because it involves taking a new convert and making him a disciple of the Lord Jesus Christ.


2. In Old Testament times, God told Abraham that through him all the nations of the world would be blessed. But with this blessing came a great responsibility. Abraham had to leave his country, his own people, and his father's household to go to a land God would show him (Genesis 12:1).


Abraham first went to a place called Haran and settled there (Genesis 11:31). He was tempted to stay at Haran, but to receive the blessing he had to obey God and leave this place. Abraham could not become the father of a great nation and fulfill his own selfish ambitions at the same time. Crossing the city limits of Haran and moving on to fulfill God's plan was a great decision for Abraham.


Did you know that you are a believer today because of Abraham's decision? Because Abraham left Haran, God blessed him. Through Abraham, all men and women of all nations everywhere are blessed with the Gospel. They are blessed because salvation through Jesus Christ came from the family of Abraham because of his obedience.


Like Abraham, when you receive the blessing you also receive a great responsibility. To those who have been blessed with salvation and the Holy Spirit, evangelism is not an option. It is an obligation (Acts 1:8).


Spiritually speaking, every believer eventually faces a "Haran" in his life. This spiritual "Haran" is the place where God asks, "Are you willing to lay down your own ambitions for the sake of the Gospel? Are you willing to leave your homeland, your people, your father's house should I ask it"? You cannot fulfill your own selfish ambitions and bless the nations at the same time. You must cross the line and leave Haran behind.


3. The Bible says "A little leaven leaveneth the whole lump" (Galatians 5:9). You learned in this lesson that the Kingdom of God will multiply like leaven. Evil also multiplies in the same way. Study the following verses: Matthew 16:6-12; Mark 8:15; I Corinthians 5:6-8. In the New Testament, leaven can speak of the permeating quality of the Gospel or the apostasy (backslidden condition) of the Church. In the Old Testament, leaven apparently had similar meanings. It was not permitted in some offerings, as it symbolized evil. In other offerings, such as the thank offering, it was permitted.


4. If you are a pastor or leader in the local church, use the following questions to evaluate the current status of evangelism in your fellowship. Record your answers on a separate sheet of paper:


(1) Who is responsible for planning for evangelism in your church?


(2) How many persons were converted and became part of your church fellowship in the last five years?


(3) What does your church presently do to reach the unsaved? Be specific in your answer.


(4) What programs does your church presently have that are not effective in terms of evangelism and producing new converts?


(5) How does your church help members discover their spiritual gifts and use them in the task of evangelism?


(6) What plans does your church have for reaching your community with the Gospel?


(7) What plans does your church have for reaching your nation with the Gospel?


(8) What plans does your church have for reaching other nations with the Gospel?


(9) How often in the past five years has your church provided specific training for personal evangelism for your membership?


(10) How often do your services include a focus on evangelism, i.e., messages aimed at reaching the unsaved, providing people opportunity to respond to the Gospel, etc.


(11) When was the last time your church participated in mass evangelism efforts, such as a crusade, rally, or concert, etc.?


Evaluate your answers and consider the following:


(1) If you do not have a specific person responsible for planning for evangelism in your church, is it possible to appoint someone?


(2) If the number of people who were converted and became part of your church fellowship in the last five years is low, how could this be changed by a greater emphasis on evangelism?


(3) What could your church begin to do immediately to reach the unsaved?


(4) What ineffective programs do you presently have that could be eliminated to provide opportunity for new, more evangelistic efforts?


(5) How could your church help members discover their spiritual gifts and use them in the task of evangelism? (The Harvestime International Institute course "Mobilization Methodologies" can assist you in this task.)


(6) What could your church begin to do to reach your community with the Gospel?


(7) What could your church do to reach your nation with the Gospel?


(8) What could your church do to reach other nations with the Gospel?


(9) How soon could the church offer specific training for evangelism for your membership? (You could use this course to train your members. Determine an appropriate time and who will teach the sessions.)


(10) How can you target the unsaved more in your regular church services and provide them with an opportunity to respond to the Gospel?


(11) What could your church do in the area of mass evangelism? Could you plan an evangelistic rally or concert or join with other churches to conduct an evangelistic crusade?








CHAPTER TWO


THE MANDATE


OBJECTIVES:


Upon completion of this chapter you will be able to:


-Write the Key Verse from memory.

-Identify five principles upon which the mandate for evangelism is based.

-Identify three things necessary to fulfill the mandate of evangelism.


KEY VERSE:

 

When I say unto the wicked, O wicked man, thou shalt surely die; if thou dost not speak to warn the wicked from his way, that wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at thine hand.

            (Ezekiel 33:8)


INTRODUCTION


People get involved in evangelism for different reasons. New converts are usually evangelistic because of their excitement about their recent conversion. Some people are forced into evangelism by guilt. Others are involved because a school or training program which they are taking requires it.


The Scriptural reason for involvement in evangelism is because it is a mandate from the Lord Jesus Christ. A "mandate" is a commission or order given from one person to another. The mandate of evangelism is the subject of this lesson.


THE MANDATE OF EVANGELISM


The mandate of evangelism given by the Lord Jesus Christ to His followers is based upon five principles taught in the Word of God. These are the principles of command, condition, concern, competition, and consummation.


COMMAND:


The mandate of evangelism is first based on the principle of command. Evangelism is commanded by Jesus in several passages that have come to be known as the "Great Commission." The following references concern the mandate of evangelism. All of the passages explain the task, but they each differ. They do not contradict, but supplement each other by revealing different aspects of the mandate.


Matthew and John record the authority for the task of evangelism. Matthew, Mark, and Luke explain the extent of the mission. Matthew, Luke, John, and Acts reveal the Holy Spirit as the power to accomplish the task. Mark mentions the message and Luke adds details. These references reveal that the mandate of evangelism includes making disciples, preaching the Gospel to every creature, preaching repentance and remission of sins to all the world, forgiving and retaining sins, and witnessing about Jesus:

 

Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost;

 

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.

            (Matthew 28:19-20)

 

Go ye into all the world, and preach the Gospel to every creature.

 

He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.

 

And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues;

 

They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.

            (Mark 16:15-18)

 

And said unto them, Thus it is written and thus it behooved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day;

 

And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in His name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.

 

And ye are witnesses of these things. (Luke 24:46-48)

 

Then said Jesus to them again, Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so send I you.


 

And when He had said this, He breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost:

 

Whose soever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them; and whose soever sins ye retain they are retained. (John 20:21-23)

 

But ye shall receive power after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth. (Acts 1:8)


The seriousness of these commands is confirmed by the following verses:

 

When I say unto the wicked, O wicked man, thou shalt surely die; if thou dost not speak to warn the wicked from his way, that wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at thine hand.

            (Ezekiel 33:8)

 

For whosoever shall be ashamed of me and of my words, of him shall the Son of man be ashamed, when He shall come in His own glory, and in His Father's, and of the holy angels. (Luke 9:26)


CONDITION:


The mandate for evangelism is also given because of the condition of the harvest fields of the world. We see hundreds of thousands of people lost in sin, without hope, headed for an eternity without God. The urgent conditions of the harvest should motivate us to action. Jesus said the harvest was ripe, but the laborers are few:

 

Therefore said He unto them, the harvest truly is great, but the laborers are few; pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that He would send forth laborers into His harvest. (Luke 10:2)

 

Say not ye, there are yet four months, and then cometh harvest? Behold I say unto you, Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields; for they are white already to harvest. (John 4:35)


CONCERN:


The mandate of evangelism also rests on the principle of concern. Evangelism must be done with a heart of compassion for lost souls. Paul was filled with this divine compassion for the lost. He was willing to be accursed from God himself if only his Jewish brethren could be saved. He went to them even when they threatened to kill him and when he suffered at their hands.


The compassion of Jesus made Him willing to face the cross of Calvary. Jesus wept over the blindness of religious leaders in Jerusalem. If there were more tears of compassion in our eyes, perhaps there would be less weeping in Hell among the lost. Argument will not save souls. One may have the truth, but if it is not spoken in love and compassion it will kill rather than quicken. Compassion leads to untiring effort in evangelism, because love suffers long, bears all things, and never fails (I Corinthians 13:4,7,8). Such loving compassion is imparted by the Spirit of God. It is a fruit of the Holy Spirit that grows from His presence within you.


COMPETITION:


The mandate of evangelism also rests on the principle of competition. If we do not win our global neighbors who hunger for change, other competing political and religious forces will win them. Spiritual hunger causes men and women to search for truth:

 

Behold, the days come, saith the Lord God, that I will send a famine in the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the Lord;

 

And they shall wander from sea to sea, and from the north even to the east, they shall run to and fro to seek the word of the Lord, and shall not find it. (Amos 8:11-12)


Although spiritual hunger leads to a search for truth, it can result in accepting evil political systems, cults, and oppressive religious powers if the void is not filled.


The principle of competition is taught by Jesus in the parable where the enemy sows tares (weeds) in the harvest field. If we do not sow and cultivate the good seed of the Word of God, the enemy will sow the tares of evil. It is the competition of such evil spiritual thorns and weeds that choke the Word of God and hinder the spread of the Gospel.


CONSUMMATION:


The mandate of evangelism also rests on the principle of the consummation (the end) of all things. Jesus said global evangelism was a precondition of His return to earth and the end of time as we now know it:

 

And this Gospel of the Kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come. (Matthew 24:14)


HOW TO FULFILL THE MANDATE


The Church is the agent of the Kingdom of God in the world and is commanded to take the Gospel message to all peoples of the earth. When we look at the priorities, programs, and activities of an average church today however, we may wonder if we have forgotten or become confused about our mission as believers.


We are busy, but busy doing what? How many of our programs, meetings, and activities are actually producing new converts? We have many flashy evangelists with fancy sermons and funny stories. In Bible times, one public sermon resulted in three thousand conversions. Today it often seems there are three thousand sermons resulting in very few conversions.


There is a lot of beautiful religious music, much of which only demonstrates the talents of the choir, soloists, and musicians. But how many souls are won? How many lives are changed? When we add to this the thousands of carnal Christians with no concern for spiritual harvest, we may question, "How will the task of evangelism ever be accomplished"?


Three things are necessary if we are to fulfill the mandate of evangelism:


IT MUST HAVE FIRST PRIORITY:


Evangelism must have first priority. We must put the task of getting the Gospel to every person in the world in first place. Our preaching, praying, studying, planning, programming, teaching, training--everything must center around this objective.


The Church must become a sending station instead of a place for rest and recreation. All of the activities of the Church must contribute directly towards mobilizing soul winners. Church leaders must become mobilizers of the Body of Christ, inspiring and training believers to do the work of evangelism.


IT MUST BE EMPOWERED BY THE HOLY SPIRIT:


Evangelism in the New Testament is not a bland or neutral activity. It is power encounters between the Holy Spirit and the forces of evil. The Holy Spirit, with all of His fruit, gifts, and power, must become a reality in our lives. The Word must be preached and taught with the demonstration of power. The Gospel must be proclaimed, not apologized for, watered down, altered, or disguised. The resources of every spiritual gift of every member of the Body must be mobilized to complete the task of evangelism. We must exchange our carnal natures for Christ-like conduct which will enable us to bear witness to the truth of the Gospel.


IT MUST FOLLOW NEW TESTAMENT PATTERNS:


If we are to fulfill this mandate, we must begin to recreate the New Testament pattern of evangelism: Everyone, everywhere, every day witnessing and winning souls. As in New Testament times, evangelism must become a natural part of everyday living. Every denomination, every local church, every Christian leader, every home, and every individual must be mobilized to the task.


SELF-TEST


1. Write the Key Verse from memory.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


2. List five principles upon which the mandate for evangelism is based.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


3. Identify three things necessary to fulfill the mandate of evangelism.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________












(Answers to tests are provided at the conclusion of the final chapter in this manual.)



FOR FURTHER STUDY



1. The call to evangelism is not an option or a suggestion. It is a command. Study the following chart which compares the various Biblical records of the Great Commission. Look up each reference in your Bible. Note the authority you have to fulfill the command. Observe the extent of your ministry, its message, and the activities in which you are to engage in the multiplication process.


Reference                   The                 The                             The                             The

                        Authority                   Extent                        Message                     Activities

________________________________________________________________________


Matthew         "All                 All                              All things                    Disciple by going

28:18-20         authority"        Nations                       Jesus commanded       baptizing, teaching.


Mark               Name of          All the                         The Gospel                 Go and preach,

16:15              Jesus               world, to                     heal the sick.

                                                every creature.


Luke               Name of          All nations                  Repentance                 Preach, proclaim,

24:46-49         Jesus               beginning at                and the forgiveness     and witness.

                                                Jerusalem                    of sins.


John                Sent by            (The extent of the ministry, the message, and the

20:21              Jesus as           activities are to be the same "as Jesus")

                        He was sent

                        by the Father.


Acts                Power of the   Jerusalem, Judea         Christ                          Witness

1:8                  Holy Spirit      Judea, Samaria,

                                                and the most

                                                remote part of

                                                the earth.

______________________________________________________________________________


2. Given the clear mandate of evangelism in the Word of God, why is it that so many Christians hesitate to fulfill this great commission? Here are some common hindrances to evangelizing:


LACK OF ABILITY:


Many people do not evangelize because they feel they lack the ability to do so. They may lack formal education or knowledge about the Bible and evangelism methods. Some people do not really lack ability at all, but have a poor self-image or false humility.


Always remember that God calls weak people to do great things. Read the story of Gideon in Judges 6 through 8. When Gideon was called to fulfill a great mission for God, he was in hiding because he was afraid of the enemy. His response was "How can I do this? My clan is the weakest and I am the least in my family."


Moses gave a similar response when he was called to lead the nation of Israel. He said "Who am I? I am not eloquent, neither heretofore nor since thou hast spoken unto thy servant; but I am slow of speech and of a slow tongue" (Exodus 3-4). The prophet Jeremiah claimed he was just a child and totally incapable of being used by God (Jeremiah 1:4-9).


People who feel they lack the ability to evangelize should ask God for the wisdom He has promised (James 1:5). They should also understand that God uses those without natural ability so that He can receive all the glory (I Corinthians 1:27-29).


INSIGNIFICANT EFFORT:


Many people do nothing because they feel their efforts would be insignificant since the harvest to be reaped is so great. How can one person do anything about the millions lost in heathen darkness? You will remember that the size of Gideon's army was reduced so God would get the glory instead of man (Judges 7). God delights in taking insignificant efforts and using them for His purposes. You will learn later in this study how just one person, winning and training one person each year, can literally raise up thousands of believers in just a short period of time. One light may not pierce the darkness by itself, but many little flames, lit one at a time, eventually produce a great light.


FEAR:


People fear they will be rejected by those to whom they witness. If they are not familiar with evangelistic methods, they fear the unknown. They are afraid they will be embarrassed by a situation they cannot handle or a question they cannot answer. Fear of evangelizing often stems from questions such as these:

 

-What will I say? You will learn about the message that is to be presented in Chapter Three of this course.

 

-How shall I say it? You will learn how to communicate the message in Chapter Five of this course.

 

-How shall I deal with difficulties? Chapter Ten of this manual explains how to deal with difficulties that may arise as you are evangelizing.

 

-What if I cannot answer a question? If you cannot answer a question, admit it. Tell the person you will study more about it and get back to him with an answer.

-What if I offend someone? What usually offends people is not honest talk about God, but the pretense of having all the answers, anger, or quarreling. If you are loving and honest in your approach and people are still offended, then just remember: You are the salt of the earth. In the natural world, when salt is rubbed into a wound it causes an unpleasant reaction at first, but it results in healing. The same is true in the spiritual world.

 

-What if I fail? It is better to try and fail than not to try at all. Success and failure are not the main concerns of evangelism. You are called to faithfulness. Three types of failure are recorded in the parable of the sower (Mark 4:1-20). Later in this same chapter, Mark tells us that it is the soil itself, prepared by the Holy Spirit, that produces the grain, not the sower. This should not be used as an excuse to refrain from calling for commitment, however. We are called to fish for the souls of men and catch them, not just influence them!


ISOLATION:


Evangelism is often hindered because we do not have contact with unbelievers. If all your friends and contacts are Christians, you will not be able to win the lost. You cannot reach unbelievers if you have no contact with them.


INSUFFICIENCY:


Insufficient time and motivation hinder people from fulfilling the mandate of evangelism. Always remember, however . . . You find time to do what you want to do and what you feel is urgent. If you do not have time to share the Gospel, then you either do not want to do it or you do not feel it is urgent. You need to reevaluate your priorities.


Loss of motivation usually results from loss of experience. Have you ever noticed how new Christians are always excited about sharing their faith? This is because their experience is fresh and exciting. If you are not careful, you will lose this later on if you do not keep a fresh and vital relationship with the Lord.


SPIRITUAL IMMATURITY:


Paul told believers that they should be able to teach the Gospel to others, but because of spiritual immaturity they were not able to do so (Hebrews 5:12).


Spiritual immaturity is revealed when believers have friction among themselves (I Corinthians 3:1-3). When you are busy fighting your brothers and sisters in Christ, you do not have time to evangelize.


3. Now that you have studied common factors hindering evangelism, read the following statements and check those which describe your own feelings:


LACK OF ABILITY:


_____I do not know what to say.

_____I do not understand the Bible very well.

_____I am not very good at talking to others.


INSIGNIFICANT EFFORT:


_____I feel like I cannot make a difference because I am only one person.

_____The task of evangelism is so great it overwhelms me.


FEAR:


_____I am afraid I will offend others.

_____I am afraid I might fail.

_____I am afraid I will not know how to answer questions.

_____I am afraid I will be embarrassed.

_____I do not know what to say.


ISOLATION:


_____I do not have contact with unbelievers.


INSUFFICIENCY:


_____I do not have time to spend in evangelizing.

_____I am not motivated to evangelize.


SPIRITUAL IMMATURITY:


_____I do not feel I am mature enough spiritually to share the Gospel with others.

_____I often have problems with other brothers and sisters in the Lord.


4. Review the items which you checked above. Next to each item you marked indicate whether you can deal with the hindrance by training, study, practice, prayer, or by changing your priorities.


5. Which items on the list are the greatest hindrances to you? How might you overcome these?



CHAPTER THREE


THE MESSAGE


OBJECTIVES:


Upon completion of this chapter you will be able to:


-Write the Key Verses from memory.

-Define "Gospel of the Kingdom."

-Summarize the basic elements of the Gospel.

-List four ways the Gospel is universal.

-Explain why the Gospel is powerful.


KEY VERSES:

 

For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins, according to the Scriptures;

 

And that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures. (I Corinthians 15:3-4)


INTRODUCTION


God has a special plan for reaching the world with the Gospel. Jesus revealed this plan when He told His disciples. . .

 

. . . Ye shall receive power after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth. (Acts 1:8)


This verse reveals several things about God's plan of evangelism:


-Jesus Christ is the content of the message.

-Disciples are the messengers of the Gospel enabled by the powerful force of the Holy Spirit.

-The whole world is to be the recipient of the message.


In this lesson you will learn about the content of the Gospel message. In Chapter Four you will learn about the messengers of the Gospel who are believers empowered by the Holy Spirit. Chapter Five explains how the messengers are to communicate the message and Chapter Six concerns the people who are recipients of the message.


THE GOSPEL OF THE KINGDOM


Jesus said:

 

And this Gospel of the Kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come. (Matthew 24:14)


The message of evangelism is the Gospel of the Kingdom. The word "Gospel" actually means "good news." When we speak of the Gospel in a Biblical sense, it refers to the good news of the Kingdom of God and salvation through Jesus Christ.


In Romans 1:1 the Gospel is called the "Gospel of God." In Romans 2:16 it is called "Paul's Gospel." In Romans 1:16 it is the "Gospel of Christ." There is no contradiction in these verses because God is the author of the Gospel, Christ is the theme, and man is the recipient.


THE BASIC ELEMENTS OF THE GOSPEL


In I Corinthians 15:1-4, the basic elements of the Gospel are given by Paul:

 

Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the Gospel which I preached unto you, which also you have received, and wherein ye stand;

 

By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain.

 

For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins, according to the Scriptures;

 

And that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures. (I Corinthians 15:1-4)


The basic Gospel message is that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, He was buried, and He rose again according to the Scriptures. In its narrowest sense, the Gospel can be summarized in the message of John 3:16:

 

For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. (John 3:16)


In its widest meaning, it includes all that Jesus taught His disciples:

 

Go ye therefore, and teach all nations. . . teaching them to observe all things, whatsoever I have commanded you. . . (Matthew 28:18 and 20)


Men must be told about the Kingdom, challenged to enter it, and trained how to live as Kingdom residents.


The Gospel we preach is not a social gospel to reform society, but the Gospel of God to redeem sinners. The message of the Kingdom must include a call to repent from sin:

 

Now after that John was put in prison, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the Gospel of the Kingdom of God,

 

And saying, the time is fulfilled, and the Kingdom of God is at hand: Repent ye, and believe the Gospel. (Mark 1:14-15)

 

From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent: for the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand. (Matthew 4:17)


(If you do not understand the basic principles of the Kingdom of God, obtain the Harvestime International Institute course, "Kingdom Living.")


A UNIVERSAL MESSAGE


The most important word in the Gospel is the word “whosoever.” It was used by Jesus (John 3:16), Paul (Romans 10:13), and John (Revelation 22:17). The Gospel is for all men of all races, cultures, tribes, and nations. It is a universal message for four reasons:


            1. Sin is universal: Romans 3:23

            2. The offer of salvation is universal: I Timothy 2:4

            3. The command to repent is universal: Acts 17:30

            4. The invitation to believe is universal: Romans 10:9-11


THE POWER OF THE GOSPEL


There is great power in the Gospel message. Paul said:

 

For I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ; for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first and also to the Greek.

 

For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith, as it is written, the just shall live by faith.

 

For the wrath of God is revealed from Heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness;

 

Because that which may be know of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them. (Romans 1:16-19)


These verses reveal why the Gospel is powerful. It is powerful because:


            -It is the revelation of God's power to man.

            -It brings salvation to all men, regardless of race, color, or creed.

            -It reveals that which may be known by men about God.

            -It reveals the judgment and wrath of God against sin.

            -It reveals the righteousness of God.

            -It shows how to be justified (forgiven, restored in right relationship to God) by faith.

            -It is the basis of the faith by which we live.


THE DEMONSTRATION OF POWER


The Gospel must be preached and taught, but it must also include the demonstration of the Kingdom of God in action. Jesus told His followers:

 

. . . as ye go, preach saying, the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand.

 

Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils; freely ye have received, freely give. (Matthew 10:7-8)


The message of the Kingdom is not in words only. The demonstration of God's power must accompany the verbal presentation. This was evident in the example set by Jesus:

 

And Jesus went about all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the Gospel of the Kingdom, and healing every sickness and every disease among the people. (Matthew 9:35)

 

And the people, when they knew it, followed Him: and He received them, and spake unto them of the Kingdom of God, and healed them that had need of healing. (Luke 9:11)


The demonstration of power--miracles and healing--is the Kingdom of God in action. It is to be part of the message of evangelism. Paul said:

 

For the Kingdom of God is not in word, but in power.

            (I Corinthians 4:20)




SELF-TEST


1. Write the Key Verses from memory.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


2. Define the "Gospel of the Kingdom."


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


3. What are the basic elements of the Gospel?


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


4. List four ways the Gospel is universal.


______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


5. Explain why the Gospel is powerful.


______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________





(Answers to tests are provided at the conclusion of the final chapter in this manual.)


FOR FURTHER STUDY


1. For further study about the Kingdom of God, obtain the Harvestime International Institute course entitled "Kingdom Living."


2. Read II Kings 4:29-37. This is the story of how Elisha raised a child from the dead. Read the background of this story in II Kings 4:8-17. This child was a miracle baby, given in answer to Elisha’s prayer and the request of a woman of Shunem who had shown the prophet kindness. The record of the child's death is given in verses 18-20. The exact cause of death is not given. It is possible it was from some type of stroke since the child complained of his head.


This story is a natural example from which spiritual truths regarding evangelism can be drawn. Evangelism is like raising the dead because you save people from the eternal destiny of spiritual death. The Bible says the soul that sins will die, that the wages of sin is death, and that sinners are dead in transgressions and sin.


The following spiritual applications can be drawn from the story in II Kings 4. In order to raise the dead. . .


I.         You Must Have Faith:


            A.        (Verses 20-21) The mother did not just accept the child's death. The tendency                         would be to weep, call professional mourners, and prepare the body to lie in                         state.

 

B.Instead, (verse 21) she laid him on Elisha’s bed, shut the door, and went to get the prophet. To understand this, you must read the account in I Kings 17:17-24 where Elijah raised a child from the dead.chamber. Taking the child to the prophet's chamber was an act of faith recalling the miracle done by Elijah. She did not wait for the prophet to take him in. She took him in, expecting a similar miracle.


            C.        God has raised dead men from the beginning of time. Take unsaved people, just                         as they are, to the place of a miracle.


            D.        (Verses 22-23) Note her faith when she said in answer to her husband's                         questions, "It shall be well."


            E.        When you begin to act on faith, it increases. By the time she neared the prophet,                         her faith had increased. (Verse 26) When Elisha sent his servant Gehazi to                         question her, she no longer said it "shall be well." She said, "It is well."


II.        You Must Make Haste: Note in verse 22 the woman said, "That I may run." You must             make haste to raise the dead because souls are dying in sin.


III.       You Must Break With Tradition:


            A.        (Verse 23) Her husband questioned, "Why are you going?" It was not the                         traditional time to go to the prophet. It was not the new moon or sabbath.


            B.        You may have to break with tradition to evangelize in the demonstration of                         power. People may tell you, "This is not the way we do things."


IV.      You Must Have Compassion:


            A.        (Verses 25-27) The dead will never be raised by "Gehazis" who have no                compassion. When the woman came in search of life, he had no compassion and                         would have sent her away.


            B.        The prophet showed concern. He asked, "Is it well with you and your husband                         and the child?"


            C.        There are people who have struggled "up the hill" to get to us. They are vexed                         and falling at our feet, yet we thrust them away. We send them to secular                         counselors, drugs, or rehabilitation centers.


V.        You Must Go Where They Are:


            A.        (Verses 29-31) To help those dead in sin, you must go where they are just as                         Elisha went to the young child.


            B.        We cannot send powerless men (like Gehazi) or substitute measures (represented                         by the staff). To raise us from the death of sin, Jesus came into this world. He                         came where we were.


            C.        The mother would settle for no substitutes. Dying men and women can settle for                         nothing other than the power of God that is able to breath new life into a dead                         soul.


            D.        When the woman shared her need, Elisha first sent Gehazi to minister to the                         child. But again, the dead will never be raised by "Gehazis"--even "Gehazis" who                         hold the staff of God. Gehazi went ahead of Elisha and the woman, and laid                         the staff upon the child, but there was no response.

 

E.If you are to raise the dead, you must follow the master's example. Read I Kings 17:17-24. Elijah, who had been Elisha's master, set the example for raising a dead child. If Elisha had followed that example, he never would have sent Gehazi with his staff to try to do the job.


            F.        Elisha thought that God's power could work without his personal presence and                         efforts. We take doctrinal or practical truth and lay them upon the spiritually                         dead, but we do not personally become involved with them. We try many                         methods apart from personal involvement, but we will have no more effect upon                         a lost soul than did Elisha's staff.


            G.        The letter of the law without the Spirit will never raise dead men. Life will                         not flow as long as leadership is placing an indifferent hand and staff upon dead                         men and women.


VI.      You Must Recognize The Seriousness Of The Condition:


            A.        (Verse 31) Gehazi did not really believe the child was dead. He reported back,                         "The child is not waked." But the child was not asleep. It was dead. Gehazi was                         not really convinced but spoke as if it were only asleep.


            B.        (Verse 32) Elisha knew the child was dead.


            C.        Unbelievers lost in sin are not just sleeping. It is a serious condition. It is                         spiritual death, and they will never be raised until we recognize this.


VII.     You Must Not Be Defeated By Failure:

 

            (Verse 31. . . "The child is not awakened.") The first attempt to raise the dead failed.             When you fail in one attempt, do not give up. Do not infer from failure that you are not             called to the task. The lesson of failure is not withdrawing from the mission, but             changing the method. You must follow the method of the master.


VIII.    You Must Resurrect Life In The Inner Chamber:


            (Verse 33) You must go into the "inner chamber" of prayer, shut the door, and intercede             for dying humanity.


IX.      You Must Be Endued With Power:


            A.        As he entered into that inner chamber, Elisha already knew the source of his                         power. Some time before this event, the mantle of Elijah had fallen upon Elisha.                         He knew his source of power. It was tried and proven.


            B.        By yourself, you cannot bring the dead hearts of men and women back to life.                         God is the source of your power. The mantle of His Holy Spirit has fallen upon                         you with a baptism of power.


X.        You Must Know The Objective:


            Your objective is not to cleanse a dead body, embalm it with spices, or cover it with fine             linen. These are all improvements, but you still have a dead body. Your objective is not             to teach morality, self-improvement, cover sin, or change society. Your objective is new             spiritual life!


XI.      You Must Be Alive Yourself:

 

A.(Verses 34-35) After prayer, Elisha stooped over the corpse and placed his mouth

upon the mouth of the dead child. He placed his eyes upon its eyes, his hands upon its hands. The warm body of the man of God covered the cold body of the child. If you are to raise the dead, you must come into contact with death. When Jesus would raise us from death, He died Himself. If you will raise the dead, you must

                        feel the chill and horror of that death.


            B.        One would think the grown man would have to contract himself on a child, but                         instead it says he stretched himself. Reaching out to dying men and women                         is a stretching experience. You must leave the comfort of your home and                         security of your Christian friends and environment. You must go out of your                         way.


            C.        As he covered death with life, the warmth of his body entered the child. If you                         are dead yourself, this will not happen. Placing one corpse upon another is                         hopeless. It is vain for dying people to gather around another dead soul.


XII.     You Must Settle For Nothing Less Than Life:


            A.        Verse 34 indicates that the flesh of the child became warm. But Elisha did not just                         settle for this sign of life. It is not lukewarmness we are after, but life! Not                         mere emotionalism, but true revival.

 

B.Elisha walked back and forth, waiting and no doubt calling upon God. Then he stretched himself upon the child again. This time, the child sneezed seven times. (The word "sneeze" actually means "gasped"). As he gasped, new life entered his body, then his eyes opened.When dead men and women gasp into their beings the convicting and renewing power of the "mighty rushing wind of the Holy Spirit," they too will experience the new life that flows from the resurrecting power of God. Elijah called his servant and the woman: "Take up thy son." The dead had been restored to life!



CHAPTER FOUR


THE MESSENGERS


OBJECTIVES:


Upon completion of this chapter you will be able to:


-Write the Key Verse from memory.

-Summarize the role of God's Word in evangelism.

-Explain the role of God in evangelism.

-Identify the role of Jesus in evangelism.

-Summarize the role of the Holy Spirit in evangelism.

-Explain the role of prayer in evangelism.

-Identify your role in evangelism.

-Define the word "witness."

-Define the term "laity."

-Define the term "clergy."

-Explain what is meant by the calling of the laity.


KEY VERSE:

 

For I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ; for it is the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. (Romans 1:16)


INTRODUCTION


You are studying God's plan of evangelism for reaching the world with the Gospel as revealed in Acts 1:8:


            -Jesus Christ is the content of the message.

            -Disciples are the messengers of the Gospel empowered by the Holy Spirit.

            -The whole world is the recipient of the message.


In the last lesson you learned about the content of the Gospel message. In this lesson you will learn about the messengers of the Gospel. The Word of God, God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, and prayer all combine their spiritual forces within the messengers of the Gospel enabling them to bear powerful witness to the Gospel.


THE WORD OF GOD AND EVANGELISM


The Gospel has the power within it to accomplish spiritual birth in a receptive soul:

 

For I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ; for it is the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. (Romans 1:16)


You do not have to be a gifted speaker to be a messenger of the Gospel. All that is necessary is that you share the Gospel message which alone can save man.


When you share God's Word, the hearer's faith does not rest on your wisdom or skillful delivery (I Corinthians 2:5). You can also be assured that God's Word does not return void. It will accomplish God's purposes (Isaiah 55:11). The Word releases the powerful demonstration of signs and wonders to follow, which convince unbelievers of the truth of the Gospel (Mark 16:20).


GOD'S ROLE IN EVANGELISM


God is the one who changes a person's life through the born-again experience. You can witness, preach, and teach the Gospel to the best of your ability, but only God can convert a soul. Once you understand this, much of your worry about evangelizing is relieved.


You are simply the messenger, a human instrument for the divine workman. It is impossible for you to convert someone. The born-again experience is conceived and birthed by God. When a person is born again, he is "begotten of God":

 

Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God; and every one that loveth Him that begat loveth him also that is begotten of Him. (I John 5:1)


THE ROLE OF JESUS IN EVANGELISM


Jesus is the one who gave the mandate of evangelism and sent the Holy Spirit to equip you for the task. He is the one who works with you with confirming signs and wonders:

 

And they went forth, and preached everywhere, the Lord working with them, and confirming the Word with signs following. (Mark 16:20)


THE HOLY SPIRIT'S ROLE IN EVANGELISM


In New Testament times, the Holy Spirit drew the crowds to the messengers of the Gospel. How else can we explain the throngs that followed their ministries? There were no newspapers, radio, or television advertisements in those days.


Instead of using worldly methods to attract the masses, we should take time to tarry in our upper rooms like the early Church did until we, too, are endued with power from on high. It is the Holy Spirit that convicts men and convinces them of the necessity of salvation. Proven evangelistic methods are useful in spreading the Gospel, but God does not want you to depend upon them. You must depend on the convicting power of the Holy Spirit:

 

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. (John 16:7-8)


It is the power of the Holy Spirit that energizes evangelism. The disciples became effective, active witnesses after they experienced that power (Acts 1:8 and chapter 2).


PRAYER AND EVANGELISM


Nothing in the realm of the spiritual can succeed without prayer. As a believer, you are part of the Body of Christ sent out to a lost and dying world to share the good news of the Gospel. But this spiritual body is directed, controlled, and energized by the head, functioning like a natural body which is guided by the head.


Just as a natural body must be attached to the head in proper alignment of nerves, bone, and muscle in order to function, the spiritual body must be in contact with the spiritual head, the Lord Jesus Christ. This contact is made through prayer.


To use another illustration: Jesus is the vine and we are the branches where the fruit is borne. Jesus is the stalk and root that gives life to the branches. The picture is one of mutual dependence. He depends on us to bear the fruit, we depend on Him for spiritual life and energy (John 15.). This relationship cannot exist without proper contact between you and the Lord. There is an example of this in the account in Matthew 17:14-21. The disciples were unable to minister to a young boy because of lack of prayer. Prayer is not a preliminary to the actual work--it is the work.


Prayer should precede evangelism. In Luke 10:1-24, Jesus tells His disciples to pray (verse 2), then He tells them to go (verse 3). Praying precedes the going. Perhaps if we prayed more we would win more. In Acts 2 they prayed 10 days, preached for ten minutes, and 3000 were saved. Today, we pray for ten minutes, preach for ten days, and only a few get saved.


Praying "evangelistically" means that you pray for:


(1) Laborers in the harvest (Luke 10:2).


(2) The Gospel to have "free course" (II Thessalonians 3:1-2). "Free course" means to "run or swiftly advance."


(3) Opportunity: In Colossians 4:3, Paul asks for prayer for himself that God would open a "door of utterance" that he might share the Gospel.


(4) Boldness: Paul asked the Ephesian Church to pray that he might share the Gospel boldly (Ephesians 6:19).


(5) Salvation: It is Biblical to pray for people to get saved. Romans 10:1 indicates Paul prayed for Israel that they might be saved.


(6) Peace: In I Timothy 2:1-4, Paul tells us to pray for those in authority so we can lead a peaceful life. He says to do this because it is good in the eyes of God who "desires all men to be saved." The Gospel spreads more rapidly in peaceful conditions, not hindered by persecution, war zones, travel restrictions, etc.


A measure of success may follow our prayerless undertakings for the Kingdom of God, but our efforts fall short of what could be accomplished if we were to recognize the vital function of prayer.


YOUR ROLE IN EVANGELISM


The messengers of the Gospel are born-again disciples. God's method is for each disciple to bear "witness" of the Gospel message. To "witness" is to tell what you have seen, heard, or experienced.


In a court of law, a witness is one who testifies about someone or something. As a witness, you are to testify about Jesus and His plan for the salvation of all mankind. There are two kinds of evidence presented by witnesses in a court of law. One is testimony which is verbal witness about the subject. The other is evidence which is visible proof. The Holy Spirit helps you bear witness to the Gospel both verbally and through the visible demonstration of God's power.


DIVISION BETWEEN CLERGY AND LAITY:


God's plan is for each disciple to be a witness of the Gospel. The early Church grew as they followed this plan. Each believer shared the Gospel and reproduced spiritually. As the Church grew, God called some people to serve full-time as pastors, evangelists, prophets, teachers, and apostles. Over a period of time, believers became part of one of two divisions in the Church. They were either clergy or laity.


The word "laity" comes from a Greek word which means "belonging to the chosen people of God". The basic meaning of the word is "all the people of God." The terms "layman" or "laity" came to be used for those who were not serving in special full-time functions in the church. The term "clergy" developed to identify professional ministers in the church. Clergy refers to those who consider the ministry their profession or who are employed full-time by the church.


Over a period of time in church history, a gradual separation developed between clergy and laity. Many laymen stopped reproducing spiritually. They began to leave the challenge of reaching the world to the full-time clergy. No professional clergy can ever accomplish what the entire Church was commissioned to do. This is one of the reasons we have not yet reached the world with the Gospel. Believers have shifted their responsibility to the clergy. The Bible does teach division of labor in the Church, but every person is to be involved in the spread of the Gospel (read Acts 6:1-6).


As the church at Jerusalem multiplied, it became necessary for a division of labor to meet all the needs in the church. The leaders gave themselves full-time to study of the Word and prayer. Laymen performed duties like ministering to the widows and other such tasks of serving. But although believers served in different offices in the church, they were all involved in the spread of the Gospel:

 

-Stephen was one of the laymen chosen for serving tasks, yet he bore powerful witness to the Gospel (Acts 6:8-11).

 

-Philip was another layman chosen for serving tasks. He shared the Gospel with the Samaritans (Acts 8:5-12).

 

-When persecution came in Jerusalem and believers scattered to other cities they continued to be witnesses of the Gospel (Acts 8:4). For true believers, there is no division between sacred and secular because Jesus is Lord of all.


THE CALLING OF THE LAITY:


If you are to really understand the spiritual call of the laity you must go back to the Old Testament. God's plan was for the entire nation of Israel to be priests or ministers:

 

And ye shall be unto me a kingdom of priests, and an holy nation. . .

            (Exodus 19:6)


As priests, each person in Israel was to be a witness of the one true God to unbelievers around him. The establishing of an official priesthood did not change God's plan for Israel. The priesthood was like the clergy of today with special leadership roles. But the entire nation was still to serve as ministers of the message of God to heathen nations.


In the New Testament, believers are given a similar calling. They are to be priests or ministers of the Gospel:

 

But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praise of Him who hath called you out of darkness into His marvelous light. (I Peter 2:9)


The calling of believers is to bear witness of God who has brought them out of spiritual darkness into the light of Jesus Christ (John 9:5). Believers are told to "walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called" (Ephesians 4:1). There is one calling and that is to bear witness to the Gospel. It is the vocation of all believers.


The call to be a messenger of the Gospel is not based on education or natural ability. God uses ordinary laymen so that He alone may receive the glory:

 

For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called:

 

But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise, and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty;

 

And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are.

 

That no flesh should glory in His presence. (I Corinthians 1:26-29)


THE GIFT OF EVANGELISM:


Some messengers of the Gospel are given a special gift from God to be an evangelist. The gift of evangelism is an ability to share the Gospel with unbelievers in a way that men and women respond and become responsible members of the Body of Christ. The word evangelist is used three times in the New Testament. In Ephesians 4:11-12, Paul says that God gives men and women who are gifted as evangelists to the church.


No one can determine to become an evangelist just because he speaks well, has a good personality, or relates well to different kinds of people. God calls and equips men to be evangelists. There should be no competition between the ministries of pastor, teacher, and evangelist. The evangelist is part of the Church, not independent from it.


The gift of being an evangelist is one of the five leadership gifts given to the Church, whose main purpose is to equip others for the work of the ministry. This means an evangelist not only has the ability to communicate the gospel to sinners, but also to equip saints to evangelize.


Although God gives some the special gift of being an evangelist, all believers are to do the work of an evangelist and share the Gospel with others. Timothy is urged to do the work of evangelism in II Timothy 4:5. You may not have the special gift, but you do have the responsibility to do the work of an evangelist.


EARTHEN VESSELS

 

But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us. (II Corinthians 4:7)


The treasure of which Paul speaks in this passage is the Gospel. Even though you are an earthen vessel--common, crude, and unrefined--your human vessel is the temple of God. You may not be well known by man. You may not be well known in your community, church, or denomination. You may be an ordinary person who works at ordinary tasks. But God can use you in evangelism.


Read the story of the healing of the lame man in Acts 4. When Peter and John appeared before the Council, it was obvious that they were uneducated, common men:

 

Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John and perceived that they were unlearned and ignorant men, they marveled; and they took knowledge of them that they had been with Jesus.

 

And beholding the man which was healed standing with them, they could say nothing against it. (Acts 4:13-14)


These common men had received new life through Jesus Christ. The life within them resulted in powerful, life-changing evangelism.


Jesus entrusted the laity with the responsibility of spreading the Gospel. He took fishermen from their boats and made them into fishers of men. He believed that ordinary people could become extra-ordinary when empowered by the Holy Spirit.


Gideon was a farmer. Paul was a tentmaker. Moses was a shepherd. Luke was a doctor and Joseph was a great political statesman. Whatever your education or occupation, God can use you in His plan.


Where you are and who you are is not important. It is what you are doing where God has placed you. The key to effective evangelism is to be God's man or woman, in God's place, doing God's work, God's way.








SELF-TEST


1. Write the Key Verse from memory.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


2. Summarize the role of God's Word in evangelism.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


3. Explain the role of God in evangelism.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


4. Identify the role of Jesus in evangelism.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


5. Summarize the role of the Holy Spirit in evangelism.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


6. Explain the role of prayer in evangelism.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________





7. Identify your role in evangelism.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


8. Define the word "witness."


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


9. Define the term "laity."


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


10. Define the term "clergy."


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


11. Explain what is meant by the calling of the laity.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________











(Answers to tests are provided at the conclusion of the final chapter in this manual.)



FOR FURTHER STUDY


1. Philip had the gift of being an evangelist. He is called an evangelist in Acts 21:8. His tendency towards this gift was evident from early in his experience with Christ. When he met Jesus, the first thing he did was to share the news with Nathanael (John 1:45-46). Later, Philip directed spiritually hungry Greeks to Jesus (John 12:21-22). Philip was ordained by man as a deacon (Acts 6:1-6), but set by God as an evangelist in the Church (Ephesians 4:11-12). Study the ministry of Philip to expand your knowledge of the special gift of being an evangelist. Study about:


-His message: Acts 8:12,35

-The demonstration of power in his life: Acts 8:5-8

-The role of baptism in his ministry: Acts 8:12, 36-38

-His home life: Acts 21:8-9

-His travels: Acts 8:4-5,26,40

-His ability to persuade groups: Acts 8:6

-His ministry to individuals: Acts 8:27-38

-His sensitivity to the leading of God: Acts 8:26,39

-His knowledge of the Word of God: Acts 8:3-35

-The response of people to his ministry: Acts 8:5,6,8,12,35-39


2. The following list of qualities are important in order to be an effective soul-winner:


(l) You must be sure of your own salvation.

(2) You should be filled with the Holy Spirit.

(3) Your lifestyle should not contradict your verbal testimony.

(4) You should have a working knowledge of God's Word.

(5) You should be a person of prayer.

(6) You should have a concern for the lost, realizing that all men apart from Christ are

       destined for Hell.


3. Since the Word of God is necessary in evangelism, it is important for you to learn verses that lead people to salvation. Here is a plan to help you do this:


(1) Write the verse to be memorized on one side of a small card or paper.

(2) On the opposite side of the card, put the reference.

(3) When you look at the reference side of the card, try to say the verse by memory.

(4) When you look at the verse side of the card, see if you can recall the reference.







CHAPTER FIVE


COMMUNICATING THE MESSAGE


OBJECTIVES:


Upon completion of this chapter you will be able to:


-Write the Key Verse from memory.


-Identify six important principles for communicating the Gospel.


-Identify a Scriptural reference which provides a formula for communicating the Gospel to people of other cultures.


KEY VERSE:

 

That the communication of thy faith may become effectual by the acknowledging of every good thing which is in you in Christ Jesus.

            (Philemon 6)


INTRODUCTION


In Chapter Three you studied about the content of the message of evangelism and in Chapter Four you learned that you are the messenger of the Gospel. This lesson focuses on the process of communicating an evangelistic message.


Effective communication is the art of transmitting a message from one person to another in such a way that it is received without distortion. The greatest concern of evangelism is that the Gospel is shared in such a way that it is understood and accepted.


EVANGELISTIC COMMUNICATION


Here are six important principles of communicating the Gospel. Evangelistic communication must:


INCLUDE BOTH HUMAN AND DIVINE ELEMENTS:


Evangelistic communication is different from other types of communication because the Word of God, God the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit are involved in the process. Sharing the Gospel is not just talking or chatting with others. It is divine communication enabled by powerful spiritual resources which are at work to convince and convict the recipients of the message.


BE TO ALL CLASSES OF PEOPLE:


Evangelistic communication must be to all classes of people; rich and poor, educated and uneducated, civilized and uncivilized. Paul confirmed this when he said. . .

 

I am debtor both to the Greeks and to the Barbarians, both to the wise, and to the unwise. (Romans 1:14)


When he said he was a debtor he meant that because he had received the Gospel he owed it to others to share it with them. He felt this responsibility towards all men every where. There were no class distinctions in Paul's mind. Everyone needed the Gospel. There was no one too poor or rich, too religious or pagan, too near or far. You cannot be prejudiced in communicating the Gospel. If you show partiality, you are sinning (James 2:1-4).


BE BALANCED BETWEEN GROUPS AND INDIVIDUALS:


The tendency among many believers is to be satisfied with the multitudes. Pastors spend most of their time behind the pulpit in front of the group. The individual is lost in the crowd. This is especially true in many cultures where mass communication is possible by media like television and radio.


There is no substitute for personal contact. Paul often ministered to great crowds but his illustration of ministering to the Thessalonians was like a mother nursing a child and as a father with his own children (I Thessalonians 2:7,11). He balanced his efforts between groups and individuals.


Jesus evangelized the multitudes, but He also shared the Gospel with individuals such as the woman of Samaria, Nicodemus, Zachaeus, and others.


BE UNDERSTOOD WITHIN THE CULTURAL CONTEXT:


Different cultures have different ways of doing things. This was true even in Bible times. For example, Lystra was a remote pagan place. Athens was a highly civilized city and was very difficult to reach with the Gospel. Berea received the Word of God gladly. They were looking for the truth.


The many cultural, linguistic, political, educational, and national differences present a challenge but they can be overcome and the Gospel expressed in an acceptable way. To understand another culture requires a willingness to adjust your thinking and behavior. Of course, you must never change your thinking or behavior contrary to the standards revealed in the written Word of God, but you can change in other ways that help to more adequately communicate the Gospel.


The Gospel must be presented in a way that it is understood by the hearers. Vocabulary, language, and style of delivery must be adjusted in order to make the Gospel understood. Paul recognized and practiced this (Acts 21:37-40; 22:2).


Acts 26:18 provides a pattern for effective communication of the Gospel to people of other cultures. God sent Paul to the Gentiles. . .

 

. . . To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me.

            (Acts 26:18)


The Gospel must be presented in such a way:


            1. That it opens the eyes of the people.

            2. That they may turn from spiritual darkness to light.

            3. That they may turn from the power of Satan to God.

            4. That they may receive forgiveness of sins through salvation.

            5. That they may receive a spiritual inheritance through sanctification by faith.


The culture in which a person is raised determines five areas:


-His Language: How he expresses and receives communication and ideas.


-His World View: How he views and understands the world.


-His Beliefs: Religion, beliefs in supernatural; ways of thinking; thought processes.


-His Values: The worth, merit, or importance which he assigns to things.


-His Behavior: How he acts and behaves; socially and culturally acceptable behavior.


You will note on the following chart that Acts 26:18 addresses each of these:









Language: Message is effectively communicated, understood, and received.

 

World view: Biblical world view is communicated.

Opens their eyes:

Beliefs: Message of faith; Gospel of the Kingdom changes their beliefs.


                                                Values change.


That they may turn

and receive:                            Behavior changes.


















GO BEYOND VERBALIZATION:


Words are basic to communication. Through the written Word, God revealed His will to mankind. But if you are to follow the example of New Testament leaders, you must go beyond verbalization, especially in cultures that are more oriented toward experience. It is God's desire for people to experience the truth of the Gospel, not just hear about it. This is why Jesus said "As you go heal the sick and cast out demons." The communication of the Gospel is more than a verbal presentation. It is the demonstration of power.


BE IN HARMONY WITH YOUR LIFESTYLE:


Paul told Philemon to live so . . .

 

. . . That the communication of thy faith may become effectual by the acknowledging of every good thing which is in you in Christ Jesus.

            (Philemon 6)


Paul was encouraging Philemon to let his faith be communicated by Christian character and conduct which reflected Jesus to others. No amount of words can overcome the power of hypocrisy, nor will words alone accomplish what the power of a positive example can achieve. The communication of the Gospel must be in harmony with your lifestyle if it is to be effective.







SELF-TEST


1. Write the Key Verse from memory.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


2. List six important principles for communicating the Gospel.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


3. What Scripture reference provides a pattern for communicating the Gospel to people of other cultures?


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________












(Answers to tests are provided at the conclusion of the final chapter in this manual.)


FOR FURTHER STUDY


1. Part of good communication is being a good listener. Here are some basic principles of listening:


-Give yourself wholeheartedly to the task of listening to what the other person is saying. Listening is not interrupting. It means controlling your desire to speak.


-Give priority to what he is saying. You may think you have an answer, but wait until you are sure you know what the question is.


-Be sure you understand precisely what the speaker means. If not, ask questions.


-Questions are important to the listening process. They help clarify what is being said.


-Recognize non-verbal communication. Be sensitive to facial expressions and actions, not just words. A person may be saying one thing, but his expressions and actions may reveal another.


2. Paul's preaching varied between races and countries. Compare his sermon in the synagogue at Antioch in Acts 13 with his preaching to the Athenians in Acts 17.


3. Jesus was a good communicator:


-He had both historical and Biblical knowledge: Matthew 12:38-42.


-He used objects and pictures that were familiar to the people: Luke 21:29-32; Mark 4:21-34


-He was simple, making speeches about light, bread, the good shepherd, and the vine: John 6:35; 8:12; 15:1


-He did not always give answers, but presented many of His teachings in parables and questions.


-He used humor. For example, comparing a speck in your brother's eye to a plank in your own: Matthew 7:3-5


-He used reason: Matthew 12:1-32









CHAPTER SIX


RECIPIENTS OF THE MESSAGE


OBJECTIVES:


Upon completion of this chapter you will be able to:


-Write the Key Verse from memory.

-Explain God's process for multiplying believers.

-Name two New Testament men used as examples of this process.

-Identify the priorities for evangelizing.

-Identify four types of sinners described in the Bible.

-Begin to evangelize.


KEY VERSE:

 

And the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also.

            (II Timothy 2:2)


INTRODUCTION


You are studying God's plan for reaching the world with the Gospel:


-Jesus Christ is the content of the message.

-Disciples are the messengers of the Gospel enabled by the powerful force of the Holy Spirit.

-The whole world is to be the recipient of the message.


Today we live in a growing world. Thousands of new human beings are born each day. The population of the world is increasing rapidly. There are millions of people who have not heard the Gospel message.


The challenge of Jesus to believers is to reach the entire world with the Gospel. In the previous two lessons you studied about the message and messengers of evangelism. But with such a great multitude waiting for the message, where is the messenger to begin? What is the priority and where do you start? Who is to be the recipient of the message?



THE MULTIPLICATION PROCESS


In the Bible, God reveals a special process to enable believers to fulfill the mission of evangelizing the world. It is based on the principle of spiritual multiplication. Multiplication is a basic principle of all growth in the natural world. Growth does not take place by adding one unit to another. Living cells multiply. This means each new cell produced has the ability to reproduce.


God's plan of evangelism is based on multiplication similar to that of living cells in the natural world. Paul summarized it when he wrote these words to Timothy:

 

And the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also.

            (II Timothy 2:2)


Paul told Timothy to select faithful men and commit to them the things he had been taught. These faithful men were to have the ability to teach others. Through this organized plan of reproduction, the Gospel would spread throughout the world.


To see how this process works, study the chart on the following page. This chart uses the period of a year as the average time necessary to convert someone to the Gospel and train him to be a reproductive Christian. In reality, it could take more or less time, depending on the person involved, so it is not possible to set a firm time limit. But if a believer would reach just one person and disciple them each year and have them pledge to disciple one person each year, the world could easily be reached with the Gospel message.


Observe on the chart that during the first year the believer is discipling one person. At the end of that year, there are now two faithful men, the believer and the new convert he has discipled in basic principles of the Christian faith.


During the next year, each of them reach one person with the Gospel and disciple them. At the end of the second year, there is a total of four people, each of whom will disciple one person the following year.
















                                     DISCIPLER(S) DISCIPLE(S) TOTAL


                        YEAR 17        65,536 65,536 =                     131,072


                        YEAR 16        32,768 32,768 =                     65,536


                        YEAR 15        16,384 16,384 =                     32,768


                        YEAR 14         8,192              8,192               =                     16,384


                        YEAR 13         4,096              4,096               =                     8,192


                        YEAR 12         2,048              2,048               =                     4,096


                        YEAR 11         1,024              1,024               =                     2,048


                        YEAR 10         512                           512                  =                     1,024


                        YEAR 9          256                           256                  =                     512


                        YEAR 8          128                           128                  =                     256


                        YEAR 7          64                            64                    =                     128


                        YEAR 6          32                            32                    =                     64


                        YEAR 5          16                            16                    =                     32


                        YEAR 4          8                             8                      =                     16


                        YEAR 3          4                             4                      =                     8


                        YEAR 2          2                             2                      =                     4


                        YEAR 1          1                             1                      =                     2


EVANGELIZING BY MULTIPLYING





Now, take an average church membership of approximately 100 people. Increase this chart to 100 people each reaching one person with the Gospel and training them to be reproductive and you can see how we could easily reach the entire world with the Gospel. When you train each one to reach one to teach one, disciples are multiplied rapidly and multiplication is faster than addition.


THE PROCESS IN THE EARLY CHURCH


The following diagram shows the first stages of evangelism by multiplication resulting from Andrew, one of the first disciples of Jesus:


Andrew ➞ Peter ➞                 Others ➞

                         │

                 Pentecost ➞

      









1.         Andrew shared the Gospel with his brother, Peter.

2.         Peter shared the Gospel on the day of Pentecost in Jerusalem.

3.         Peter continues to share the Gospel with others who also become reproductive.

4.         Thousands of believers scattered from Jerusalem continue to spread the Gospel.

5.         Each person they reach becomes reproductive and the process continues.


This diagram shows the first stages of evangelism done by the Apostle Paul:

















 

            Ananias                    Paul 

                                            

                                             │


                                                Timothy                    Others


                                             │

 

                                                Faithful Men             Others


                                            │

 

                                                Others                       Others 




1.                                                                                                                                                     Ananias is used of God to raise up Paul.

2.                                                                                                                                                     Paul disciples Timothy.

3.         Paul continues on to disciple others.

4.         Timothy disciples faithful men who can teach others.

5.         Faithful men reach others.

6.         These "others" continue the multiplication process.

7.         Each person in the network continues to multiply.


PRIORITIES IN EVANGELIZING


The Word of God identifies several priorities in evangelizing. These priorities are:

 

EXISTING SOCIAL NETWORKS:


The New Testament reveals that the Gospel spreads the most rapidly along existing social networks. By this we mean that you can spread the Gospel easiest to your own social group of friends, relatives, and coworkers.


For example, Jesus called one fisherman named Andrew. Andrew shared the Gospel with a relative named Peter. They shared with other fishermen with whom they worked. Soon a whole group of fishermen were following Jesus.


Your relatives, friends, and co-workers, the world of work, school, family, and community is your arena of ministry. Use the diagram on the following page to help you begin to evangelize. Write your name in the circle at the center of the diagram. Now think about those with whom you work and socialize, your neighbors, and family members. Think about those who attend your church who still may be unsaved. In the circles located around you write the names of at least three relatives or friends with whom you are in close contact and who are unbelievers.


  ○ ○ ○

   ➘ ➘ ➘

       Write your name here ➔

Now look at the diagram. Notice the arrows that point to and from your friends and relatives to YOU. You are the ambassador of the Lord to these people. They may never enter a church. They may not ever come in contact with the pastor of your church. But YOU know them well. It is through these existing networks of social relationships that you can begin to evangelize.


HOUSEHOLDS:


The family is a divinely created social unit and is a universal social institution. There are more instructions about the family in the Bible than any other institution. For this reason, household evangelism deserves close attention as a Biblical priority.


Moses was faithful with all his household, while Joshua exclaimed "But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord" (Joshua 24:15). Rahab, a harlot of Jericho, turned to the Lord and saved herself and her entire family from destruction (Joshua 2). When Jesus visited the home of Zaccheaus, he declared, "This day is salvation come to this house" (Luke 19:9). When Jesus healed the nobleman's son, he believed along with his entire household (John 4:46-54).


The entire family of Cornelius came to the Lord (Acts 10), as did the household of Lydia (Acts 16) and that of the Philippian jailer (Acts 16), Crispus (Acts 18:80), and Stephanas (I Corinthians 1:16). Similar references are made to Onesiphorus and his house (II Timothy 1:16) and Philemon (Philemon 2).


While Jesus said there would be division in families because of the Gospel, sometimes this occurs


because of the methods of evangelism rather than the Gospel itself. When evangelism occurs within the family unit, the healing and restoring power of the Gospel can work within the home.

When individual members of the family are contacted with the Gospel outside of the home, they are drawn out of family relationships and separated from the divinely ordained social unit to which they belong. The family fears the intrusion, may become the enemy of the convert, and resists the Gospel. Evangelism of an entire family honors the social unit God has created. The family itself becomes a strength to the new believer rather than opposition.


UNREACHED PEOPLE:


People yet unreached by the Gospel are also an important priority. There are millions of villages of the world that have never been reached with the Gospel. There are many people who have never had the opportunity to read God's message to them in His written Word because it has not been translated into their language.


If we view the world in terms of nations, then we could say all the world has been reached because there presently exists within every nation some sort of Gospel witness. There are now believers and organized churches in every country on earth. But this is by no means the same as "every tribe, language, and people and nation" as referred to in Revelation 5:9.


When Jesus spoke of going into all the world He was not referring to nations alone. The term Jesus used when He spoke of the world was the Greek word "ethne." This word means "ethnic" or "people groups." Jesus viewed the world in terms of "all people" or "people groups."


A people group is defined as:

 

"A significantly large group of individuals who have a common bond to one another. Such a bond may include like language, culture, customs, and geographic location."


A people group is the largest possible group within which the Gospel can spread without encountering problems in understanding and acceptance. Because a people group speaks a common language and has a common culture, the language and cultural differences which hinder the presentation of the Gospel are eliminated.


There are over 19,000 different people groups in the world which have been identified to date. Some have as few as 3,000 members, while others are as large as 30 million. Each continent of the world is made up not only of different nations, but of different people groups. For example, on the continent of Africa there are 1,000 languages and hundreds of people groups.


A reached people group is one with an adequate number of believers and resources to evangelize their own people without outside assistance.


An unreached people group is a people group among which there is no native community of believers with adequate numbers and resources to evangelize their people without outside assistance. There are some 17,000 ethnic or people groups without a vital, witnessing Gospel church. Within these ethnic groups are millions of people. These unreached people groups can be grouped together in five major categories, including tribal people, Muslims, Chinese, Hindus, and Buddhists.


Paul indicated that priority should be given to unreached people:

 

Yea, so have I strived to preach the Gospel, not where Christ was named, lest I should build upon another man's foundation;

 

But as it is written, To whom He was not spoken of, they shall see; and they that have not heard shall understand. (Romans 15:20-21)


RECEPTIVE AREAS:


Jesus taught His disciples that they were not to minister to unreceptive people. If the Gospel was rejected, they were to move on and concentrate their energy on areas of greatest receptivity. In Chapter Twenty-One, you will learn that the Apostle Paul also followed this strategy.


CITIES:


You will learn later how Paul established churches in great centers of civilization. Change usually starts in cities and then spreads to rural areas. Cities are centers of trade and tourism and as people who visit are reached with the Gospel they take the message with them when they return home.


FOUR TYPES OF SINNERS


Although people differ greatly from culture to culture, the Bible reveals certain characteristics of all people everywhere. All men apart from God are sinners. The following are four types of sinners described in the Bible:


THE RATIONAL SINNER:


Romans 1:18-32 describes the rational sinner. The rational sinner may believe there is a God, but this fact alone does not save. The rational sinner is very intelligent, and when you try to present the Gospel he will often bring up an intellectual problem. This is why you must know the Word of God. The Bible says:

 

. . . be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear. (I Peter 3:15)


THE REFORMED SINNER:


Romans 2:1-16 describes the reformed sinner. The reformed sinner believes God exists because we learn from Romans 2:3 that he thinks he is capable of judging the sinner described in Romans 1:18-32. He also believes he is going to escape the judgment of God. The reformed sinner thinks he is as good as anyone else and that there are only hypocrites in the church. He is the type of person who tries to reform, start over, and improve himself.


THE RELIGIOUS SINNER:


Romans 2:17-23 describes the religious sinner. The religious sinner is one who trusts in his religion or denomination for salvation. He trusts in ceremonies and rituals, but does not know the true God. Nicodemus was a Pharisee (John 3:1). He was religious, but he did not understand the true meaning of salvation and being born again.


THE REJECTED SINNER:


The woman at the well in John 4 is an example of the rejected sinner. She was a social outcast. She was divorced, and obviously not accepted by the other women of her village because normally women came to draw water together and it was a time of great socialization. This woman came alone.


The rejected sinner is more concerned about his own personal problems than with spiritual issues. The best way to deal with him is as Jesus did with the woman at the well. You must begin by dealing with their personal needs.




















SELF-TEST


1. Write the Key Verse from memory.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


2. What is God's process for multiplying believers?


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


3. What two New Testament men were named as examples of spiritual multiplication?


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


4. What are the priorities for evangelizing?


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


5. What four types of sinners are described in the Bible?


______________________________ ______________________________


______________________________ ______________________________






(Answers to tests are provided at the conclusion of the final chapter in this manual.)


FOR FURTHER STUDY


1. Prayerfully complete the following pledge and begin to act upon it:

 

"Realizing that evangelism is the responsibility of every believer, I hereby dedicate myself to pray for one person, doing all I can to share the Gospel with him/her, and to bring them into fellowship with Christ and the Church."


The person I will pray for and evangelize is:


Signed:


Date:


2. In Luke 16:19-31 read the story of the rich man who went to Hell. This man wanted to return to share the Gospel with his family but it was too late. Do not wait until it is too late to share the Gospel with those in your own family.


3. Learn more about spiritual multiplication by obtaining the Harvestime International Institute course, "Multiplication Methodologies."


4. Here is how to raise up laborers for the harvest:


            -Pray for workers: Matthew 9:38; James 4:2; Luke 11:9; John 14:14


            -Preach for workers: Isaiah 6:8


            -Personally enlist and prepare them as Jesus did: Matthew 20

















CHAPTER SEVEN


THE METHODS: NEW TESTAMENT PRINCIPLES



OBJECTIVES:


Upon completion of this chapter you will be able to:


-Write the Key Verse from Memory.

-Summarize basic principles of New Testament evangelism.

-Explain the results of New Testament evangelism.


KEY VERSE:

 

. . .These that have turned the world upside down are come hither also.

            (Acts 17:6)


INTRODUCTION


This lesson begins the first of several that focus on evangelism methods. A method is an organized way of doing something. If you are to be successful in the task of evangelism, you must use Scriptural methods. Practical methods that have been proven by experience are also helpful.


This lesson focuses on New Testament methods of evangelism. Chapter Eight concerns additional principles revealed in parables about evangelism recorded in the New Testament. Chapter Nine explains how to do personal evangelism and Chapter Ten deals with difficulties encountered in the process. Saturation evangelism is discussed in Chapter Eleven and mass evangelism in Chapter Twelve.


As you begin this study on methods of evangelism, it is important to remember that while there are certain proven approaches that have been effective in evangelism, God may have a different method for you to follow in each situation. In doing the work of an evangelist, always ask the Holy Spirit to give you His anointed touch. He knows the heart of the person you are dealing with. It is the role of the Holy Spirit to guide and anoint you, to give you understanding and compassion, and to convict the unsaved of sin and draw them to respond the Gospel.




NEW TESTAMENT EVANGELISM


When a movement grows from a dozen peasants in an unimportant corner of the world to be the official religion of the civilized world within 300 years, it is wise to examine it and learn from its approaches.


That movement is Christianity, and its methods are recorded in God's Word, the Holy Bible. Review of the Gospels, Acts, and the Epistles reveal several basic methods of evangelism. In New Testament times evangelism was:


BACKED BY PRAYER:


Prayer is one of the most important Scriptural methods of evangelism. As Jesus viewed the natural harvest fields which represented the spiritual harvest fields of a world lost in sin, the first thing He commanded was to pray. Jesus did not say:


            -"The fields are ready for harvest, go."

            -"The fields are ready for harvest, organize."

            -"The fields are ready, so make plans."

            -"The fields are ready, so raise funds for evangelism."

            -"The fields are ready, so educate people."

            -"The fields are ready, so appoint a committee to study them."


He said: "The fields are ripe unto harvest, PRAY YE . . ."


In the New Testament we learn that the early church was constantly in prayer (Acts 1:14). The first missionary journey developed from prayer (Acts 13:3). Paul insisted that the churches pray for him as he evangelized (II Thessalonians 3:1).


We need to stop depending on all we know about missions, unreached people, and ways to communicate the Gospel. These are important, but we need to concentrate more attention on the first command: "PRAY YE."


THE FIRST PRIORITY:


Evangelism was not just one of many activities of the early Church, it was the main priority. Today, evangelism and missions comes far down on the list of priorities of many individuals and churches.


In New Testament times, evangelism was a natural, spontaneous sharing of the good news. It was engaged in continuously by all believers. The practice was to go where people were and disciple them. Today, we invite people to church and hope they will come. In modern times the church invites, while the first church invaded.


Everyone did the work of evangelism (Acts 1:8). Each believer took the Great Commission as a personal command to evangelize. They did it everywhere, not just in the church building (Mark 16:20). They did it every day (Acts 5:42), not just periodically during an evangelistic campaign. Every church reproduced, every member reproduced, and every home was a center of evangelism.


When necessary, believers even worked to support themselves in order to spread the Gospel. The Apostle Paul did this. It may seem foolish that a man of Paul's ability, education, and spiritual gifts should do manual labor to support himself. He had the right to claim full support from the churches (I Corinthians 9:7-15; I Timothy 5:17-18; Galatians 6:6), but at the same time he was prepared, if necessary, to support himself in order to spread the Gospel. He did this on several occasions. (I Corinthians 4:12; I Thessalonians 2:9; II Thessalonians 3:8).


In many nations today the custom is that pastors and evangelists are fully paid for their efforts. This has blocked the spread of the Gospel and the planting of new churches. Believers also tend to leave the task of evangelism to the full-time ministers because they are "getting paid for it." There are also many churches without pastors because they are not able to support a full-time pastor and the possibility of working has not been considered.


If we are to impact the nations with the Gospel of Jesus Christ, we must return to evangelism as the first priority. We must do it everywhere, every day, and if necessary, get a job and work in order to get the message out.


HOLY SPIRIT DIRECTED:


In every evangelistic advance recorded in Acts, the Holy Spirit is the motivator and energizer. In the modern church, especially in western nations, managerial skills and committee meetings often replace dependence on the Spirit.


The Holy Spirit is the director of evangelism. There are many passages in Acts that illustrate the Holy Spirit at work, but the following are central in terms of evangelism.


-Acts 1:8: The Holy Spirit is to empower the witness of believers.


-Acts 2: The gift of the Holy Spirit was given and promised to all believers.


-Acts 4: Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, testified regarding the miracle experienced by the lame man in Acts 3.


-Acts 4:31: They were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the Word of God with boldness.


-Acts 5:52: Peter declared that we are witnesses along with the Holy Spirit.



-Acts 7:51: Stephen charged Jewish leaders that did not accept the Gospel with resisting the Holy Spirit.


-Acts 9:17: Paul was filled with the Holy Spirit after his conversion.


-Acts 10: The Holy Spirit fell upon the house of Cornelius, bringing them to conversion.


-Acts 11:12: Peter explained that he went to Caesarea because of the Holy Spirit's instructions to him.


-Acts 13:2: The Holy Spirit called Paul and Barnabas into evangelistic work.


-Acts 16:6: The Holy Spirit forbid Paul to minister in Asia.


The Holy Spirit directs evangelism through the Word of God, by supernatural guidance, by calling and enabling workers, and by correcting our plans to bring them into harmony with God's purpose.


ACCOMPLISHED BY SPECIFIC PLANNING:


When Jesus first began His ministry, He announced a six point plan:

 

The Spirit of the Lord is upon me because He hath anointed me to preach the Gospel to the poor; He hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, To preach the acceptable year of the Lord.

            (Luke 4:18-19)


Jesus followed this plan throughout His earthly ministry, and the first church continued with this pattern.


Jesus later gave a plan for the extension of the Gospel to the nations of the world (Acts 1:8). The disciples were to first evangelize Jerusalem, then go on to Judea, Samaria, and the uttermost parts of the world. This is still the Lord's plan for evangelism. You are to start right where you are and continue in ever-expanding circles until you are touching the nations of the world.


Your "Jerusalem" is the community in which you live. There are thousands of Christians who give to and pray for missions, but have never walked across the street to tell a neighbor about Jesus. Some churches have tremendous missions programs overseas, but are doing nothing to evangelize their own city, except for those who happen to come into their church building.




SATANICALLY OPPOSED:


Satanic opposition was actually used by God in New Testament times to further the cause of evangelism. Study the following passages:


-Acts 12:1-24: Herod killed James, then imprisoned Peter. This was political opposition.


-Acts 16:16-40 and 19:23-41: Evangelism conflicted with business interests in the cities of Ephesus and Philippi. Persecution arose from the economic world.


-Acts 4-7: In these chapters there is a record of persecution from the religious leaders of the time.


-Acts 11: This passage records opposition from within the church itself because of the tradition of the Jews. This is internal opposition.


-Acts 8, 13, and 16: These chapters record direct Satanic opposition through Simon, Elymas, and a demon possessed girl.


When you are invading Satan's kingdom with the good news of the Gospel, you must expect opposition from the political, economic, and religious worlds. You must also expect internal attacks from within the church and direct attacks from Satan. Rather than permitting these attacks to stop you, use them as opportunities to further the Gospel as they did in New Testament times.


FOCUSED ON BOTH GROUPS AND INDIVIDUALS:


All New Testament evangelistic methods can be considered under either personal or group evangelism. The ministry of Jesus, the disciples, Paul the Apostle, and others demonstrate the importance of both formal and informal approaches.


Jesus ministered to many large groups while He was on earth. These occasions stand out in our minds because of the excitement that marked these events. But from the beginning to the end of His ministry Jesus also invested His life in winning men and women one by one through personal evangelism. In the parable about the lost sheep in Luke 15:3-7, Jesus was clearly describing His own method of evangelism, for He called Himself the Good Shepherd.


Peter preached to crowds in Jerusalem at Pentecost (Acts 2). This was group evangelism. He also shared the Gospel personally with Cornelius (Acts 10). This was personal evangelism. Philip preached to great crowds in Samaria (Acts 8:5-6) and personally to the Ethiopian man in the dessert (Acts 8:27-35). Paul had crowds so great in some of his meetings that they ended in riots! But he never stopped dealing with individuals.


Never get so involved with the masses that you forget the individual. Jesus was constantly calling individuals out of the crowd to confront them with the claims of the Gospel of the Kingdom. Both individual and group evangelism are effective Biblical methods.


ACCOMPANIED BY THE DEMONSTRATION OF POWER:


New Testament evangelism was accompanied by the demonstration of God's power. Jesus commanded His disciples, "As you go. . .heal the sick, cast out demons."


The demonstration of God’s power takes the words you speak and makes them effective:

 

. . .His word was with power. . .And they were all amazed and spake among themselves, saying, What a word is this! for with authority and power He commandeth the unclean spirits, and they come out. (Luke 4:32,36)


The demonstration of power confirms the Word with signs following:

 

And they went forth, and preached every where, the Lord working with them, and confirming the Word with signs following. (Mark 16:20).


God's power is present to heal as you evangelize:

 

And the power of the Lord was present to heal them. (Luke 5:17)


The power of God brings deliverance:

 

When He called unto Him His twelve disciples, He gave them power against unclean spirits, to cast them out, and heal all manner of sickness and all manner of disease. (Matthew 10:1)


God's power verifies the Gospel. To "verify" means to prove something. The power of the Holy Spirit proves the reality of God's Word:

 

And a great multitude followed Him, because they saw His miracles which He did on them that were diseased. (John 6:2)


The demonstration of power directs people to God:

 

And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man's wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power.

 

That your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God. (I Corinthians 2:4-5)



You will learn more about the demonstration of power and evangelism in Part Two of this course entitled "As You Go."


STRATEGICALLY MOBILE:


Believers in the first church were constantly on the move for the sake of the Gospel, effectively penetrating areas that were ready to receive the Word. We call this being "strategically mobile" which means being able to move quickly to areas of receptivity.


In Acts 8:1, we find that the church was forced into strategic mobility by persecution. When believers were scattered because of persecution in Jerusalem, they "went everywhere preaching the Word."


In Acts 8 there is an excellent example of strategic mobility. When Philip was in Samaria reaping a great spiritual harvest, the Lord called him to go to the desert. God had a mission for him with an Ethiopian man who would play a tremendous role in evangelizing Africa. Philip immediately left Samaria and went to the desert.


If we are to understand strategic mobility, we must have both a "harvest" and a "soldier" mentality. In Matthew 9:36-38, Jesus compared world evangelism to the natural harvest. If we are to reap the harvest when it is ready, we must go where the harvest is when it is ripe. We must be willing to move or stay in order to accommodate the harvest.


We must also have a soldier mentality. When we become believers, we enlist in the spiritual army of the Kingdom of God. We are called to "endure hardness as a good soldier" (II Timothy 2:3). A soldier cannot retreat or go on leave just because things get tough. The test of a good soldier is not his appearance during a parade, but his performance on the battle field.


A soldier does not choose his assignment and he does not act today on the basis of orders received 20 years ago. They were good orders then, but have long sense become obsolete. Thus, a soldier of Jesus Christ is open to fresh assignments and revelations from the Holy Spirit.


Jesus was speaking of strategic mobility when He told His followers that they were not to continue to sow on barren ground:

 

And whosoever shall not receive you, nor hear your words, when ye depart out of that house or city, shake off the dust of your feet. (Matthew 10:14)


Paul followed this command of "dust shaking." In Acts 13:51-52 the ministry the Gospel was rejected in Antioch of Pisidia, so Paul left there and went to Iconium.


Jesus was strategically mobile. He went from village to village sharing the Gospel. When the disciples tried to get Him to limit His ministry to one place, He said:

 

I must preach the Kingdom of God to other cities also; for therefore am I sent. (Luke 4:43)


ACCOMPLISHED BY NETWORKING:


Networking is another New Testament method of evangelism. Networking simply means team effort, people working together for the common cause of spreading the Gospel.


In New Testament times, evangelism was done by believers networking together for the advancement of the Kingdom of God. Christians were not separated by denominational lines or busy promoting their own churches or organizations.


We must return to networking in order to make the best use of available resources to reap the great spiritual harvest God promised in these end times. You will learn more about networking for evangelism in Chapter Fifteen of this course.


CULMINATED IN CHURCH PLANTING:


New Testament evangelism resulted in the formation of a local fellowship of believers. This is called church planting. The work of evangelism is not complete until new believers become a functioning part of the Church. You will learn more about church planting in Part Three of this course where you will study in detail the methods used by the Apostle Paul. In New Testament times converts were turned to disciples within the context of the local church. You will learn more about this process in Chapter Thirteen, "Decisions Or Disciples?"


THE RESULTS OF THE WITNESS


The results of these New Testament methods of evangelism were tremendous:

 

. . .And a great number believed and turned unto the Lord. (Acts 11:21)


A local congregation at Ephesus took the Gospel to every person in the province of Asia within two years (Acts 19:10). A similar group at Thessalonica evangelized most of Greece (I Thessalonians 1:8). When the disciples came to Thessalonica, the tremendous results of their evangelistic efforts were summarized by religious leaders who said:

 

. . .These that have turned the world upside down are come hither also.

            (Acts 17:6)


They turned the world upside down--And all this was done in a wicked and godless society, without printing presses, church buildings, seminaries, denominational headquarters, and modern means of mass communication and rapid transportation.




SELF-TEST


1. Write the Key Verse from memory.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


2. Summarize the basic principles of New Testament evangelism which you learned in this lesson.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


3. What were the results of New Testament evangelism?


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________




(Answers to tests are provided at the conclusion of the final chapter in this manual.)





FOR FURTHER STUDY


1. You learned in this lesson that in New Testament times every home was a center of evangelism. Review the following events, all of which occurred in homes:


-Acts 2: The Holy Spirit was given during a prayer meeting in the upper room of a home.


-Acts 5:42: Believers worshiped in the temple and in the home, and went house-to-house visiting, fellowshiping and worshiping.


-Acts 8:3: When Saul tried to defeat the Church, he did not concentrate efforts just on the temples of worship. He entered every house trying to abort the spread of the Gospel. Each home was a center of evangelism.


-Acts 9:11,17: Paul was discipled by Ananias in a home.


-Acts 10: The first vision of the cross cultural expansion of the Gospel was given in a home as Peter prayed.


-Acts 10: The first message to the Gentiles was preached in a home.


-Acts 12: A home prayer meeting resulted in Peter’s deliverance from prison.


-Acts 20:20 and 28:30-31: Paul taught both publicly and house-to-house during his ministry.


-Acts 20:7-12: Paul was speaking in a home when Eutychus fell out of the window.


-Acts 21:8-14: Prophetic revelation occurred in homes.


-I Corinthians 16:19; Romans 16:3-5; Colossians 4:15; and Philemon 1:2: Records of churches in homes.


2. The following questions will help you as you consider various approaches to evangelism. Ask yourself, "Is this method". . .


-Biblical: Methods must be based upon principles derived from the Bible.


-Effective: The methods should be successful. Success is defined as a positive response to the Gospel by the unsaved.


-Efficient: Methods should represent the best use of spiritual resources in terms of people, materials, and finances.

-Culturally Relevant: What works in one nation may not be appropriate in another. What works with one people group may be rejected by another.


3. Conduct your own study of the Gospels, Acts, and the Epistles. Identify additional principles of New Testament evangelism and examples of the principles studied in this lesson.









































CHAPTER EIGHT


THE METHODS: NEW TESTAMENT PARABLES



OBJECTIVES:


Upon completion of this chapter you will be able to:


-Write the Key Verse from memory.

-Define the word "parable."

-Explain why Jesus used parables.

-Identify principles of evangelism in parables taught by Jesus.


KEY VERSE:

 

And with many such parables spake He the Word unto them, as they were able to hear it. (Mark 4:33)


INTRODUCTION


In the previous lesson you studied New Testament methods of evangelism. There are many New Testament parables which teach more about the evangelism process. A parable is a story which uses an example from the natural world to illustrate a spiritual truth. The actual meaning of the word "parable" is to "lay beside, to compare." In parables, Jesus compared natural examples with spiritual truths. A parable is an earthly story with a Heavenly meaning.


In this lesson you will study New Testament parables which teach principles of evangelism.


WHY PARABLES?


The disciples once asked Jesus why He used parables to teach spiritual truths:

 

And the disciples came, and said unto Him, Why speaketh thou unto them in parables? (Matthew 13:10)


Jesus answered:

 

. . .Because it is given unto you to know the mysteries of the Kingdom of Heaven, but to them it is not given. (Matthew 13:11)


Understanding of spiritual truths taught in parables was given to the disciples because they had spiritual minds. Those without spiritual minds heard the parables and failed to understand them. Spiritual truths can only be understood by a spiritual mind:

 

But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God; for they are foolishness unto him; neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. (I Corinthians 2:14)


A spiritually minded man is one who has been born again spiritually. Those with spiritual minds understand parables. Those with carnal, sinful minds cannot understand.


PARABLES ABOUT EVANGELISM


Jesus told many parables which concern evangelism and explain how the Kingdom of God will spread throughout the world. Study the following parables:


The Lost Sheep: Matthew 18:12-14; Luke 15:4-7

The Lost Coin: Luke 15:8-10

The Lost Son: Luke 15:11-32


These parables reveal God's concern for the lost and the urgency with which you should seek them. It does not matter why they are lost. The sheep wandered away. The coin was lost through carelessness. The son was lost through his own rebellion. God is not concerned with how men are lost, only that they be found. You are to make every effort to find those lost in sin. You are to go where they are, not wait for them to come to you.


The Empty Banquet Table: Luke 14:15-23


Evangelism should not stop just because some refuse to respond to the invitation of the Gospel. You are to seek the spiritually hungry and bring them into the spiritual banquet prepared by the Lord.


The Barren Fig Tree: Luke 13:6-9


The fig tree is a natural symbol of the nation of Israel. God raised up Israel as the nation through which He could reveal the Kingdom to the world. God tried to get the "tree" of Israel to bring forth fruit among heathen nations by sharing their knowledge of the true God. But Israel remained barren and unfruitful. Now God has raised up the Church for this purpose. God nurtures believers in an attempt to make them productive, just as He did the nation of Israel. His purpose is the same: We are to bring forth "fruit" among the heathen by sharing our knowledge of the true God. God is not pleased with trees that produce no fruit.


The Talents: Matthew 25:14-30; Luke 19:11-27

The Man On A Long Journey: Mark 13:34-37

The Servants: Matthew 24:43-51; Luke 12:39-46

The Watching Servants: Luke 12:36-38

The Faithful Manager: Matthew 25:14-30


These "servant" parables emphasize wise stewardship of the Gospel which has been entrusted to believers. Each believer is given talents or special abilities to use to spread the Gospel. Whether your abilities are great or small, you must use what God has given you. When Jesus returns to earth, those who have properly used their abilities will be rewarded (Luke 16:10-12).


The Sower: Matthew 13:3-8; Mark 4:3-8; Luke 8:5-8


The Gospel is spread by sowing the seed of the Word of God. There can be no multiplication without the Word. The fruit depends on the life that is in the seed itself (the Word of God) and the response of the soil (man's response to the Word of God). There will be varied responses to the sowing of the Word.


Your responsibility is to sow. As you sow the seed of the Word of God, some soil is ready and yields a harvest. Other soil is not responsive and yields very little. Even Jesus encountered unresponsive soils in His earthly ministry:

 

And He could do there (his own country) no mighty work, save that He laid His hands upon a few sick folk and healed them.

 

And He marveled because of their unbelief. . . (Mark 6:5-6)


The Tares And The Wheat: Matthew 13:24-30


As you evangelize and new believers are added to the Church, Satan will try to defeat the process. He will sow people described as "weeds" among the good seed of God's Kingdom. Some of the people who profess to be believers and come into the church through evangelism are not sincere. They are "weeds" planted by Satan. Jesus does not want you to spend time and effort trying to separate the weeds from the wheat. Keep sowing the seed and evangelizing. When Jesus returns, the weeds will be separated during the harvest.


The Fishing Net: Matthew 13:47-50


Jesus compared evangelism to a great net thrown into the sea. All kinds of fish enter, but when the net is drawn to shore the good fish are separated from the bad. The Kingdom of God will draw men and women from all nations. Many will enter. Some will be sincere, others will not. In the final judgment when God draws in the net, the good and bad will be separated. You are not called to separate, you are called to fish.


The Mustard Seed: Matthew 13:31-32; Mark 4:31-32; Luke 13:19


The Kingdom of God will multiply like mustard seed. The mustard seed is very small in the beginning, but in maturity it grows to great size. The Kingdom of God on earth had a small beginning. When Jesus returned to Heaven after His earthly ministry, He left behind a small group of followers to spread the Gospel. That small group of believers has multiplied to thousands of followers in many nations.


The Leaven: Matthew 13:33; Luke 13:21


Like leaven in a lump of dough, the Gospel will spread throughout the whole "lump" of the world. Like leaven, the power of the Kingdom is not external but it is internal.


The Vine And The Branches: John 15:1-16


This parable describes the relationship between Jesus, us, and the evangelism process. He is the spiritual vine and we are the branches. We cannot bear fruit alone. We are reproductive only as we are attached to the life flow of the branch, Jesus. Jesus wants to prune your life of everything that is not reproductive so you will bring forth spiritual fruit that remains.


The Harvest: Matthew 9:37-38; Luke 10:2


In this parable, the field is the world. The harvest is the multitudes of men and women ready to respond to the Gospel message. A great harvest waits to be reaped by the spiritual laborers of God.


OTHER EVANGELISM PRINCIPLES


Jesus taught other principles of evangelism in brief statements:


Light Of The World: Matthew 5:14-16; Luke 8:16


The Gospel will spread as believers appear like lights from a city located on high ground which can be seen from miles around. We are to bring the light of the world (Jesus) to a world filled with spiritual darkness.


Salt Of The Earth: Luke 14:34


In Bible times, salt was rubbed into meat to preserve it from decay. Believers are the spiritual salt rubbed into the world with the message of preservation (salvation) which will save them from the decay (spiritual death) of sin.



Treasures In Heaven: Matthew 6:19-21; Luke 12:15


Believers are not to be concerned with treasures of the world. As we share the Gospel, we lay up spiritual treasures in Heaven.


The Broad Gate: Matthew 7:14


You cannot judge the right way in terms of numbers only. The way to Hell draws many while the way to eternal life is found by few.


Many Works: Matthew 7:22


Many wonderful works will be done by some people. But doing great works is not necessarily the same as doing God's will and accomplishing His purposes. God's work must be done by His people in His way.


Little Is Much: Matthew 10:42; Matthew 14:15-21


Everything done in the name of Jesus, even that which seems small, is productive. The miracle of the loaves and fishes illustrate how God multiplies and uses what little we have to offer. This is true of the smallest efforts at evangelizing.


Growth Requires Change: Mark 2:21-22; 7:13


New growth requires change. You cannot contain the new in old vessels of tradition and sinful lifestyles. The powerful potential of the Gospel is hindered by men who cling to traditions and refuse to change.


Gain By Losing: Mark 8:34-37; 10:29-30

Receive By Giving: Luke 6:38


Worldly principles teach that you gain by obtaining more and more. Jesus taught that you gain everything when you lose everything. What appears to be loss in the natural world is gain in the spiritual world. As you give yourself to the task of world evangelism, you will gain eternal rewards.


Death Brings Life: John 12:24


To be a reproductive disciple you must die to the desires of your flesh. You must be dead to sin and abandon your own way to follow Jesus in reaping the spiritual harvest fields of the world.




SUMMARY


In relation to evangelism, the teachings of Jesus reveal that He is not pleased with: Fishing without catching, an empty banquet table, sowing without reaping, a tree that bears no fruit, lost sheep not brought to the fold, a lost coin that is sought but not found, lost sons that do not return, unproductive servants, unresponsive spiritual soil, ripe harvests that are not reaped. Our Father, who is not willing that one person should perish, is interested in results through evangelism:

 

The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. (II Peter 3:9)

































SELF-TEST


1. Write the Key Verse from memory.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


2. Define the word "parable."


_______________________________________________________________________________


3. Why did Jesus use parables to teach His followers?


_______________________________________________________________________________


4. Briefly describe the evangelism principle taught in each of the following parables:


The Empty Banquet Table:


The Barren Fig Tree:


The Lost Sheep, Coin, And Son:


The Servant Parables:


The Sower:


The Tares And The Wheat:


The Fishing Net:


The Mustard Seed:


The Leaven:


The Vine And The Branches:


(Answers to tests are provided at the conclusion of the final chapter in this manual.)




FOR FURTHER STUDY


1. Continue your study of principles of evangelism revealed in New Testament parables. Use the references given in this lesson to study each of the parables of Jesus in more detail. Can you discover additional principles of evangelism?


2. Examine your own life in light of the teaching on evangelism revealed in these parables:


-Are you fishing without catching?


______________________________________________________________________________


-Are you sowing without reaping?


______________________________________________________________________________


-Are you like a tree that bears no fruit?


______________________________________________________________________________


-Are you seeking for "lost sheep"?


______________________________________________________________________________


-Are you a productive servant?


______________________________________________________________________________


-Is the soil where you are laboring responsive?


______________________________________________________________________________


-Are you doing your part in reaping the spiritual harvest in your own community? Your nation? The world?


______________________________________________________________________________









CHAPTER NINE


THE METHODS: PERSONAL EVANGELISM



OBJECTIVES:


Upon completion of this chapter you will be able to:


-Write the Key Verse from memory.

-Define personal evangelism.

-List three ways personal evangelism is done.

-Explain how to lead a soul to Christ.


KEY VERSE:

 

. . .Many of the Samaritans of that city believed on Him, for the saying of the woman, which testified, He told me all that ever I did. (John 4:39)


INTRODUCTION


You have learned that New Testament methods of sharing the Gospel included both personal and group evangelism. In this lesson you will learn how to do personal evangelism. In Chapter Ten you will learn how to deal with difficulties you may encounter in personal evangelism.


PERSONAL EVANGELISM


Personal evangelism is just what the name reflects: It is sharing the Gospel personally with individuals. It is person-to-person, one-to-one evangelism. Personal evangelism is done in one of the following three ways:


SILENT WITNESS:


You are a silent witness to the Gospel by your Christian lifestyle. Your life will be a witness to something, whether intentionally or not. If your life is not in harmony with your verbal witness of the Gospel, it hinders people from responding to salvation.


Although Christian conduct is the strongest silent witness, some people also wear "religious" jewelry or hang Biblical verses or pictures in their home, business, or car. Sometimes these items lead to a verbal witness when an unsaved person asks about them.


GOSPEL TRACTS:


Gospel tracts are brief messages from the Word of God usually commercially printed on small pieces of paper. They are inexpensive and light weight, so large numbers can be carried and freely distributed to those with whom you come in contact.


You can give a Gospel tract to anyone--those you do business with, friends, relatives, even people you pass on the street. You can enclose them in letters you write and leave them in libraries, stores, restaurants, and offices. You can also place them in bus, train, or airplane stations.


When you personally give a Gospel tract to someone say, "Here is something good to read" or "Here is something that changed my life and I would like to share it with you." Statements like these often lead to a verbal witness of the Gospel.


When you select tracts for personal evangelism, consider the following questions:


1. Does the tract answer a question someone is really asking? If it does, people will be interested in reading it.


2. Is it brief? It must be short and to the point or people may tire of reading it before they complete the message.


3. Does it speak positively without criticizing another faith?


4. Does it use religious language that unsaved people will not understand?


5. Is the print large enough to be easily read?


6. Does the tract share the basic Gospel message?


7. Does it offer an opportunity to respond and accept Jesus Christ as Savior?


Write your name, address, and telephone number somewhere on the tract so if a person wants additional spiritual help they can contact you. Many commercially produced tracts provide a blank space for this. A tract is not a substitute for a verbal witness, but a supplement to it. The value of a tract is that it can continue its witness after you are gone.


VERBAL WITNESS:


Although a silent witness and sharing the Gospel with tracts are both effective, remember that these are not all the Great Commission requires. It requires that you verbally share the Gospel.


Verbal witness in personal evangelism is usually done on an informal basis rather than by formal preaching or teaching. It may be done by going house-to-house sharing the Gospel. It can be done in homes for the aged, hospitals, prisons, schools, businesses, and at special evangelistic events. You can personally share the Gospel with friends, relatives, neighbors, and school and business associates. You can do personal evangelism by becoming a counselor at a mass crusade or an altar worker in your church. In personal evangelism, you can share the Gospel with anyone with whom you come in contact.


Personal evangelism can be done in an interview style, like Jesus did with the woman at the well in John 4. You can focus on something you observe a person doing or a visible need you might see they have. You can ask them leading questions that provide opportunity to share the Gospel.


Personal evangelism may be done by sharing with others the testimony of what Jesus has done in your life. In John 4, the Samaritan woman returned to the city and shared her personal experience. As a result, many people came to meet Jesus and hear the Gospel. The Scriptures record that. . .

 

. . .many of the Samaritans of that city believed on Him, for the saying of the woman, which testified, He told me all that ever I did. (John 4:39)


The woman's testimony was brief, because as yet she knew little about the Lord. She simply said, "He told me all that ever I did." What she did know about the Lord was a reality to her. It was first-hand knowledge and God wonderfully used her words.


God will bless the faltering testimony of a new believer who knows personally of what he speaks more than the theologically correct message of one who is preaching things not real in his own heart.


Sharing the story of how you came to know Jesus and what He means to you is a powerful evangelistic tool. Your testimony brings Jesus out of the pages of the Bible, away from religion and the church, and shows Him to be alive and working today. People might be able to dismiss the Bible or religion, but they cannot deny the reality of a true experience. A person with an experience is never at the mercy of one with an argument!


If you are nervous about giving your testimony, it is helpful to write it out and study it before you share it with others. Here are some questions to think about as you prepare your testimony:


            -What led you to start thinking about God?

            -How did you come to know Jesus?

            -What difference has knowing Him made in your life?

            -What difference has it made in your family?

            -How has your life been changed?

 

-What wonderful or miraculous things have occurred?

              (For example, have you been healed or delivered from drugs or alcohol?)


After you write out your testimony, first share it with a Christian friend. Ask them to suggest changes that might help you lead an unbeliever to the Lord. Then practice your testimony until you can share it without using notes.


Personal evangelism can even include sharing a song with someone. The Psalmist David wrote:

 

And He hath put a new song in my mouth, even praise unto our God: many shall see it, and fear, and shall trust in the Lord. (Psalms 40:3)


According to this verse, the song of praise to God is a testimony that can result in the salvation of many.


HOW TO LEAD SOMEONE TO CHRIST


The goal of all personal evangelism is leading men and women, boys and girls, to ask forgiveness of sins and receive the Lord Jesus Christ as Savior. Over the years, many methods for leading someone to Jesus have been developed which use different numbers of points and various approaches to sharing the Gospel.


While such plans can be helpful, there is no one method of personal evangelism that will work in every situation. Each person to whom you witness is different, with differing needs and problems. These differences call for various approaches rather than using routine memorized points. You need to be sensitive to the leading of the Holy Spirit, as He is the one who draws men to salvation. He knows exactly what the person you are witnessing to needs, for He searches the heart of man.


One thing all unsaved people have in common, however, is sin and the need for a Savior. Because of this, regardless of how the Holy Spirit may lead you to share the Gospel, your witness must always be focused on the goal of leading that person to Christ.


To accomplish this, somewhere in the presentation your personal witness must include the following:


PRESENTING: THE BASIC GOSPEL MESSAGE:


Review Chapter Three of this manual which focuses on the message of the evangelism. The basic elements of the Gospel are given by Paul in I Corinthians 15:1-4. Review this passage in your Bible. The basic message is that all men everywhere have sinned, Jesus died for sin, He was buried, and He rose again according to the Scriptures.


Here are some verses helpful in presenting the Gospel:


            -God is a holy God:

            I Peter 1:16; Habakkuk 1:13

            -Because He is holy, sin separates men from God:

            Isaiah 59:2

            -Sin is universal; all have sinned:

            Romans 3:10-12,23

            -The penalty for sin is death:

            Ezekiel 18:20; Romans 6:23; Psalms 9:17

            -God is not willing that any should perish:

            I Peter 3:9; John 3:16; Romans 5:8

            -To provide salvation for all men, God made a sacrifice sufficient for all:

            Hebrews 10:10; John 1:29; Galatians 2:20

            -Jesus bore the penalty of sin for all men when He died on the cross:

            I Peter 2:24; Isaiah 53:6,10

            -The offer of salvation is universal:

            I Timothy 2:4

            -The command to repent is universal:

            Acts 17:30

            -The invitation to believe is universal:

            Romans 10:9-11

            -The sinner must repent and accept Jesus to benefit from this sacrifice for sin:

            John 1:12; 5:24


CLOSING: THE INVITATION AND RESPONSE:


In the business world, the word "closing" is very important. "Closing" means to conclude a sale with a positive response from the prospective buyer. Closing is also important in personal evangelism. Almost persuading someone to accept Jesus is not enough to save them from Hell. As in business, delaying the closing by waiting to make a decision later often results in a negative response.


Leaders in the business world teach that closing starts the minute they begin their sales technique with the prospective buyer. Throughout the presentation they get the person to make little agreements with them. This leads to the final agreement to purchase their product.


This approach can be applied spiritually to evangelism. As you share the Gospel, lead the unsaved person to small agreements. This can be done by asking questions such as the following:


            -What do you think?

            -Have you ever thought about. . .?

            -Do you think people feel that. . .?

            -Do you think that is unusual?

            -Have you ever had that happen to you?

            -Have you had that problem?


Keep the person participating in the conversation. Provide a little information, then ask a question that calls for a response. Jesus used this technique with the woman at the well in John 4 and with Nicodemus in John 3.


As you conclude your presentation, build upon their own responses to close with a final positive response to the Gospel. Sharing the Gospel without providing an opportunity to respond is witnessing, but it is not evangelism. We are called to win, not just witness.


Closing your presentation of the Gospel is asking, in some form, two questions:


1. "Do you understand what I have been telling you?" This provides opportunity to clear up any questions and objections and make sure they understand before you call for the final response.


2. "Would you like to make Jesus Christ your Lord and Savior?" Lead the person in a prayer asking forgiveness of sins and accepting Jesus Christ as Savior.


Always remember that in personal evangelism you are doing much more than selling a product or promoting a church or denomination. You are dealing with the eternal destiny of souls. Entrance into the Kingdom of God is similar to accepting a wedding invitation, as Jesus implied in His parable of the marriage dinner in Matthew 22:2-5. Only those who respond positively to the invitation can enter in. It is not enough to say, "I plan to attend."


When Jesus said to His disciples, "Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men" (Matthew 4:19), He was giving a natural example of a spiritual truth. No fisherman simply throws in his line or net. He must also pull it in to make a catch.


FOLLOWING UP: DISCIPLESHIP:


In the Great Commission recorded in Matthew 28:19-20, there are two types of teaching mentioned. The first is the sharing of the Gospel to lead people to salvation. The second is the teaching of new converts after they accept the Lord. Evangelism (the first type of teaching) is not complete without discipleship (the follow-up teaching).


All new converts should receive follow-up ministry after they have received Jesus Christ as their Savior. Immediate follow up includes assurance of salvation, confessing Christ publicly, baptism in water, baptism in the Holy Spirit, developing a devotional life, and becoming part of a local church. You will learn more about follow-up in Chapter Thirteen entitled "Decisions Or Disciples?"


SELF-TEST


1. Write the Key Verse from memory.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


2. Define personal evangelism.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


3. List three ways personal evangelism is done.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


4. Explain how to lead someone to Christ.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________









(Answers to tests are provided at the conclusion of the final chapter in this manual.)


FOR FURTHER STUDY


1. Many unsaved people live in nations closed to traditional evangelistic approaches. Foreign missionaries are not granted visas and there can be no open proclamation of the Gospel in crusades or similar events.


In these nations, personal evangelism is most important. One way believers evangelize in these nations is by something called "tent making." You already learned how the Apostle Paul worked to support himself through his profession of tent making.


In nations that are closed to traditional evangelism, believers are now entering on work visas, securing jobs to support themselves, and then sharing the Gospel personally with those around them. Although these believers are doing secular work, their main work is personal evangelism. This concept of sharing the Gospel is called "tent making."


2. As you are doing personal evangelism, you will encounter many different people of various religious faiths. The Lausanne Committee For World Evangelization has prepared a series of small booklets with suggestions for evangelizing Buddhists, Hindus, Muslims, Marxists, refugees, Jews, and traditional and new religious movements. Request a catalog of the "Lausanne Occasional Papers" from the Lausanne Committee For World Evangelization, P.O. Box 2308, Charlotte, North Carolina 28211 U.S.A.


3. When you are doing personal evangelism, be careful about using religious terms or phrases that an unsaved person may not understand. These might include "saved, born again, filled with the Spirit, Christian, hallelujah", etc. Many of these words are common to you as a believer, but the unsaved do not understand them.


4. In personal evangelism, do not hesitate to share the Gospel with children. Make a simple presentation of the basic elements of the Gospel. If they can understand these, call for a response and lead them to Jesus.


5. You can turn ordinary conversations into opportunities to share the Gospel. Here are some suggestions:


* * *


When someone asks: "Could you tell me what time it is?"


Answer: "According to my watch or according to the Bible?"


Continue the conversation: Give them the actual time, but share that the Bible also speaks of time. It says it is time for all who do not know the Lord to repent and come to Him.


* * *


When someone asks: "What's new?"


Answer: "What kind of news do you want to hear? Good news or bad news?"


Continue the conversation: Their response will probably be "Good news"--so share the good news of the Gospel.


* * *


When someone bumps you accidentally and says: "Excuse me. I am sorry."


Answer: "That's okay. Accidents will happen. Or maybe it wasn't an accident. . ."


Continue the conversation: "Perhaps this was meant to happen so I could share something very special with you."


* * *


When a clerk gives you too much change, return the money and say:

"You gave me back too much money."


Continue the conversation: "There was a time in my life when I would have kept it, but since I became a Christian things have changed." Then share how the Gospel has impacted your life.


* * *


When a store clerk asks: "May I help you?"


Answer: "Yes, if you will permit me to help you in return."


Continue the conversation: The clerk will probably ask, "How can you help me?" Tell her!


* * *


When someone asks for a light for a cigarette, say: "I do not use them since the explosion."


Continue the conversation: It is almost guaranteed that the person will ask, "What explosion?" Answer, "The one that took place in my life when I became a Christian."


* * *


When you answer a telephone and the person says, "Sorry. I have the wrong number."


Answer: "No, you really dialed the right number."


Continue the conversation: They will probably say, "What do you mean.?" Tell them that perhaps this happened to provide them an opportunity to hear about something that can change their life and eternal destiny.


* * *


Can you think of other unique opportunities that every day contacts might provide in terms of sharing the Gospel? Think about this, prepare some responses of your own, and be ready to use them.


Always remember, however, no one approach is right in every situation. Be open to the leading of the Holy Spirit. His approach is always the right one!


6. You will understand the importance of personal evangelism when you consider the following:


-Mass Evangelism is important, but many unsaved people will not come to hear the evangelist. There are not enough mass evangelists, and there are many countries where this method is not permitted because of government regulations.


-Radio Evangelism is effective, but the majority of the people of the world do not have radios. When anti-Christian governments are in power, they eliminate this approach.


-Television Evangelism is effective, but the majority of the people of the world do not have televisions. When anti-Christian governments are in power, they also eliminate this approach.


-Literature Evangelism has its place, but many people cannot read, there is not enough literature available, and we cannot get Christian literature into some nations.


-Church Building Centered Evangelism has its place, but many do not have church buildings. There is not time or money to erect buildings sufficient to evangelize the world by this approach. Church buildings are forbidden in many nations.


All other methods of evangelism combined will never evangelize the world without personal evangelism.


7. Study the personal evangelism done by Jesus:


            -Andrew, John, and Peter:                                          John 1:35-42

            -Philip and Nathanael:                                                John 1:43-51

            -Nicodemus:                                                               John 3

            -The woman of Samaria:                                            John 4

            -The nobleman:                                                          John 4:46-54

            -The call of Simon, Andrew, John, and James:          Luke 5:1-11

            -A leper:                                                                     Mark 1:40-45

            -The paralytic carried by his friends:                          Mark 2:1-12

            -The call of Matthew:                                                 Mark 2:13-17

            -The infirm man at Bethesda:                                     John 5

            -The man with the withered hand:                              Luke 6:6-11

            -The centurion:                                                           Luke 7:1-10

            -The widow of Nain:                                                  Luke 7:11-17

            -The sinful woman in Simon's house:                        Luke 7:36-50

            -The Gadarene demoniac:                                          Mark 5:1-20

            -Jairus and his family:                                                Mark 5:21-43

            -The woman with an issue of blood:              Mark 5:25-34

            -The two blind men:                                                   Matthew 9:27-31

            -The dumb demoniac:                                                Matthew 9:32-34

            -The Syrophenician woman:                                      Matthew 15:21-28

            -The deaf and dumb man:                                           Mark 7:32-37

            -The blind man near Bethsaida:                                  Mark 8:22-26

            -The demoniac boy:                                                    Mark 9:14-29

            -The woman caught in adultery:                                 John 8:1-11

            -The three prospective disciples:                                Luke 9:51-62

            -The lawyer:                                                               Luke 10:25-37

            -The man born blind:                                                  John 9

            -The woman bowed together:                         Luke 13:10-21

            -The rich young ruler:                                                Matthew 19:16-22

            -The blind men near Jericho:                                      Mark 10:46-52

            -Zacchaeus:                                                                Luke 10:1-10

            -Judas Iscariot:                                                           Luke 22; John 13; Matthew 27

            -Pilate:                                                                        John 18-19; Luke 23

            -Herod:                                                                       Luke 23; Mark 15

            -The two thieves:                                                        Luke 23:32-43


8. Study personal evangelism in the book of Acts:

 

            -Peter and John with the lame man:                                       3:1-11

            -Philip with Simon the sorcerer:                                 8:9-24 

            -Philip and the eunuch:                                               8:26-40

            -Ananias and Saul of Tarsus:                                      9:10-20

            -Peter a with Aeneas and Dorcas:                               9:32-42

            -Peter with Cornelius:                                                10:1-11,18

            -Paul with Elyman:                                                     13:6-12

            -Barnabas and Saul with Sergius Paulus:                   13:7-12

            -Paul and Silas with Lydia:                                        16:12-15

            -Paul and Silas with the Philippian jailer:                  16:23-40

            -Paul's house-to-house evangelism in Ephesus:         20:17-35

            -Paul with Felix and Drusilla:                                    24:24-27

            -Paul with King Agrippa:                                           chapter 26

            -Paul with Publius and his father:                               28:7-11

            -Paul in his own house in Rome:                                28:16-31


 

CHAPTER TEN


THE METHODS: DEALING WITH DIFFICULTIES


OBJECTIVES:


Upon completion of this lesson you will be able to:


-Write the Key Verse from memory.

-Explain why people make excuses.

-Deal with common difficulties that arise in personal evangelism.


KEY VERSE:

 

For the invisible things of Him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse. (Romans 1:20)


INTRODUCTION


This lesson provides guidelines for dealing with difficult situations you may encounter in evangelism. It is not possible to cover every difficulty you might have, but we have focused on the most common problems.


Remember that these are only suggestions for dealing with difficulties based on experiences of those who have previously engaged in evangelism. It is important that you rely first upon the power of the Holy Spirit in difficult situations, as each one is unique.


UNDERSTANDING WHY PEOPLE MAKE EXCUSES


It is helpful if you understand why people make excuses or raise objections in evangelism encounters. Sometimes Satan inserts questions or objections into a person's mind. Always remember that you are in a spiritual warfare for the souls of men and women.


Some people raise objections that are not original with them. They have heard someone else bring them up and they are just stalling or trying to get you off of the subject. Others bring up objections that really are hindering them in making a decision for Christ. These must be dealt with successfully before they can accept the Gospel.


Every excuse or objection can be answered by the Word of God. Never allow objections to inflame your anger or force you into an argument. When this happens you lose control of the evangelistic encounter and the excuse effectively accomplishes its purpose.

  

The remainder of this lesson is organized by headings describing various responses you might receive while sharing the Gospel. As you study these, remember what God says about excuses:

 

For the invisible things of Him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse. (Romans 1:20)


"I AM NOT GOOD ENOUGH"

or

"I AM TOO GREAT A SINNER"


Some people feel they are not good enough to come to the Lord and they want to wait to make themselves better.


Show them that God requires faith, not moral fitness. Jesus came into the world to save sinners, not the righteous (Matthew 9:12-13; Luke 18:19). Outward reform is not sufficient if the heart remains unchanged. Use the following verses: Isaiah 1:18-19; Acts 2:38; I Timothy 1:15; I John 1:7; John 6:37; Revelation 22:17; Romans 5:8,16,20.


"THE CHRISTIAN LIFE IS TOO HARD"


Show him that the "way of the transgressor is hard" (Proverbs 13:15). Jesus teaches that His yoke is easy and His burden light (Matthew 11:28). The pleasures of sin are only for a short time but real and lasting joy comes through salvation (I Peter 1:5 and Jude 24).


"I CANNOT GIVE UP MY EVIL WAYS"


Agree with him and share a summary of Romans 7 which agrees with his statement. Then determine if his problem is he "can not" or "will not.” Explain that when he becomes a believer, he can do all things through the power of the Holy Spirit (Philippians 4:13). Emphasize that sin is slavery, and the only way he can escape is through the blood of Jesus (John 8:34; Romans 7-8).


"MY HEART IS TOO HARD"


Ask him if it was possible for it to be changed, would he want that? Then share Ezekiel 36:26-27 and John 6:37.




"I WILL HAVE LOTS OF COMPANY IN HELL"


This is true, but show him what kind of company it will be using Revelation 22:15. Share with him that companionship of friends or relatives will not lessen the distress described in Revelation 20:10.


"I DO NOT BELIEVE THE BIBLE"

or

"I DO NOT UNDERSTAND THE BIBLE"


Explain that no one understands everything completely, but the response God requires in regard to salvation is very easily understood. Explain that there are some things that cannot be understood until he becomes a believer. (See I Corinthians 2:14.)


See if there is any difficulty in understanding John 3:16; Acts 16:31; 2:38; 3:19; Romans 10:9-10; Acts 22:16; and 6:1-4. Also use the following verses: John 7:17; I John 5:9-12; Mark 16:16; II Timothy 3:16-17.


"THERE ARE MANY CONTRADICTIONS IN THE BIBLE"


Sometimes people have just heard others use this excuse and are only repeating what they have heard. Ask him to show you one of the contradictions. Usually the person cannot do this. If they show you what they think is a contradiction, explain it. If you do not know the answer, find out!


"I AM DOING THE BEST I CAN"

or

"I AM GOOD ENOUGH ALREADY"


This may be true in terms of moral standards and good deeds, but we are not saved on the basis of these. Use the following verses: Isaiah 64:6; Ephesians 2:8-9; Titus 3:5; I John 1:7; Acts 17:30; 22:16; Philippians 3:4-7; Romans 2:1; 14:13


"OTHERS ARE STANDING IN MY WAY"


A person may use the excuse that a relative or friend would object or laugh at them if they become a believer. Read the warnings in Luke 9:26; Romans 14:12; and Acts 5:29. Let him know persecution is to be expected (II Timothy 2:12; 3:12; II Corinthians 4:16,18). They may also claim they want to wait for someone else, such as their husband or wife. Use Matthew 10:37. They may fear losing their sinful friends if they become a Christian. Share James 4:4, Psalms 1:1-2, and Proverbs 18:24.




"THERE ARE HYPOCRITES IN THE CHURCH"


Agree with him. Jesus said this would be so (Matthew 13:25,47). But this does not affect the claims of Christ on his own soul. Show him that no hypocrites will be in Heaven (Revelation 21:8). Perhaps he has been hurt by other believers. Remind him that I Corinthians 2:5 says our faith rests in God rather than man. Remind him that he will answer for himself at the time of judgment, not others. Share Romans 2:1-5 and Revelation 20:12.


"I CANNOT DECIDE WHICH DENOMINATION TO JOIN"

or

"I AM OF ANOTHER FAITH"


Point out that the Bible does not command us to join a denomination, but to become part of the one true Church through the born-again experience. Do not invite anyone to join a denomination, but rather to obey Jesus and become part of the Body of Christ (Acts 2:47). Remind them that salvation is only in Jesus, not in church membership (Acts 4:12).


"IT IS TOO LATE FOR ME"


This excuse may be offered by someone who considers himself to be a great sinner and/or someone who has lived his whole life in sin and is now quite old. Remind him that God does not want anyone to be lost (II Peter 3:9) and that even the thief on the cross was saved in the final moments of his life (Luke 23:43).


"I WOULD RATHER NOT ACCEPT CHRIST NOW"


Read the following verses to him: Isaiah 55:6; Matthew 24:44; Acts 17:30; 22:16; II Corinthians 6:2; Joshua 24:15; I Kings 18:21; Hebrews 2:3; James 4:13-14


"MY PROBLEMS ARE TOO DIFFICULT"


God is the answer to difficult problems. Share II Corinthians 12:9-10; Matthew 19:26; Philippians 4:13.


"I HAVE BEEN SEEKING, BUT CANNOT FIND"


Some people claim they have been seeking an experience with the Lord but have been unable to find it. Share the following verses: Jeremiah 29:13; Luke 19:10; John 1:12


"GOD IS TOO GOOD TO PUNISH ME"


Share Romans 2:4-5; II Peter 3:9-11; John 5:40; Ezekiel 33:11.


"I CANNOT FORGIVE SOMEONE"


People often use the excuse that they cannot forgive someone who has done them wrong, so they cannot be saved themselves. It is true that this may be impossible with the unregenerated mind, but as a Christian, God can help them do this. Share Mark 11:25 and James 4:6.


"IT IS NOT POSSIBLE BECAUSE OF MY BUSINESS"


Some people use this excuse because they think becoming a believer means they have to give up their job and go full-time in the ministry. Explain that this is not so. Ask what business he is in. If his profession does not conform to Christian principles, then it will be necessary to give it up. It is better to do that than lose his soul. Share Mark 8:36.


"I TRIED ONCE AND FAILED"

or

"I AM AFRAID I WILL FAIL"


Compliment him for his sincerity in being concerned about failure, but point out that God has promised power to help him overcome sin. Share Romans 8:37; I Corinthians 10:13; I Peter 1:5; II Timothy 1:12; and Hebrews 13:5.


Consider the reasons why they may have failed. Did they try instead of trust in God? Did they cover their sins instead of confessing them? Did they go the way of the world instead of the Word of God? Did they read the Bible, pray, and attend church regularly?


Create hope and encourage him to try again. Remind him that the mercies of God are renewed each day and never fail (Lamentations 3:21-24). Share also II Corinthians 9:8; 12:9; I John 1:9; Jude 24; II Timothy 1:12; I Peter 1:5. It is trusting, not trying, that brings salvation. Share John 1:12; and Romans 4:3-5.


"I DO NOT HAVE ASSURANCE"


Sometimes when you have led a person to the Lord he does not have the assurance of salvation. Tell him that to refuse to believe God's Word is sin (Romans 14:23). Share the following verses about assurance of salvation: John 1:12; 3:16,18,36; 5:24; Acts 10:43; 13:39; Ephesians 1:17-20; 2:8; Jude 24, II Timothy 1:12; I Peter 1:5,18-19; I John 1:7; 5:13; Hebrews 9:22-10:22; II Corinthians 5:17; Romans 5:1,9; 3:25; 8:16.


TOTAL REJECTION


Read Luke 10:10-12. When you are evangelizing and the Gospel is totally rejected, you are to move on to another person or area that is receptive.



SELF-TEST


1. Write the Key Verse from memory.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


2. Why do people make excuses in evangelism encounters?


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


3. How would you deal with the following common difficulties that arise in personal evangelism? Write your answers on a separate sheet of paper.


"I am not good enough."

"The Christian life is too hard.”

“I cannot give up my evil ways."

"My heart is too hard."

"I will have lots of company in Hell."

"I do not believe in the Bible."

"There are too many contradictions in the Bible."

"I am doing the best I can."

"Others are standing in my way."

"There are hypocrites in the church."

"I am of another faith."

"It is too late for me."

"I would rather not accept Christ now."

"My problems are too difficult."

"I have been seeking, but cannot find."

"God is too good to punish me."

"I cannot forgive someone."

"It is not possible because of my business."

"I tried once and failed."

"I do not have assurance."




(Answers to tests are provided at the conclusion of the final chapter in this manual.)


FOR FURTHER STUDY


Here are some things to remember when you are dealing with difficulties in evangelism:


1. Remember that you are engaging in a spiritual battle over the souls of men and women. Do not fight a spiritual battle with carnal weapons of debate and anger.


2. Do not just dismiss an objection as not important. It may be very important to the person.


3. Do not spend too much time on an excuse. Deal with it quickly, gently, and effectively, then return to the main point of the discussion which is their commitment to Christ.


4. Do not argue.


5. Do not get angry.


6. Be courteous and tactful.


7. Rely upon the Spirit of God and the Word of God.


8. Keep returning to the main point.


9. Do not criticize.


10. Do not condemn.


11. Do not become discouraged and give up.


















CHAPTER ELEVEN


THE METHODS: SATURATION EVANGELISM


OBJECTIVES:


Upon completion of this chapter you will be able to:


-Write the Key Verse from memory.

-Define "saturation evangelism."

-Summarize the Biblical basis of saturation evangelism.

-Discuss the basic principles of saturation evangelism.

-Discuss the pattern of saturation evangelism.

-Explain how a local pastor can prepare his congregation for saturation evangelism.


KEY VERSE:

 

Through mighty signs and wonders, by the power of the Spirit of God; so that from Jerusalem, and round about unto Illyricum I have fully preached the Gospel of Christ. (Romans 15:19)


INTRODUCTION


To "saturate" means to "fill completely with something that permeates." Saturation evangelism is an approach to spreading the Gospel that functions much like leaven in bread dough. Its purpose is to spread the Gospel until an entire area is permeated and affected. Starting first in a local community (your Jerusalem), saturation evangelism spreads to permeate your state or province and eventually your nation.


THE BIBLICAL BASIS OF SATURATION EVANGELISM


The phrase "saturation evangelism" is not found in the Bible, but neither are evangelism, personal evangelism, or mass evangelism. The New Testament emphasis is on the work of evangelism although these specific terms are not used.


However, saturation evangelism is well illustrated in the New Testament. The city council reported that the apostles had filled Jerusalem with their doctrine (Acts 5:28). The churches in all Judaea, Galilee, and Samaria were edified. All that lived in Lydda and Saron turned to the Lord and all Joppa was informed of the Gospel (Acts 9:31,35,42). Thousands of Jews turned to the Lord (Acts 21:20). In Antioch of Pisidia and in Ephesus, it was recorded that "the Word of the Lord was published throughout all the region" (Acts 13:49).


All that lived in Asia heard God's Word, (Acts 19:10), and perhaps the greatest report on saturation evangelism came from the pen of the Apostle Paul:

 

Through mighty signs and wonders by the power of the Spirit of God; so that from Jerusalem and round about unto Illyricum I have fully preached the Gospel of Christ.

 

Yea, so have I strived to preach the Gospel not where Christ was named, lest I should build upon another man's foundation. . .

 

But as it is written, To whom He was not spoken of they shall see; and they that have not heard shall understand. (Romans 15:19-21)


BASIC PRINCIPLES OF SATURATION EVANGELISM


Saturation evangelism is based upon the following principles:


ABUNDANT REAPING REQUIRES ABUNDANT SOWING:


The Apostle Paul told the Corinthian church:

 

But this I say, He which soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he which soweth bountifully shall reap also bountifully.

            (II Corinthians 9:6)


Applied to evangelism, this law of harvest means that only the church that works at evangelism can expect to harvest lost souls. No matter how good the seed, how fertile the ground, or how skillful the farmer is, he cannot reap without first sowing. Pastors and churches who do not sow in evangelism do not reap the results of evangelism. Saturation evangelism requires that you invest time, people, effort, prayer, tears, and funds in evangelism.


A DEDICATED MINORITY CAN IMPACT A NATION:


The Biblical record reveals that God prefers not to work by many, but rather by few. You will remember that God sent home the extra warriors of Gideon's army and used a small band of 300 men. It only took a few Spirit-filled disciples to "turn the world upside down" (Acts 17:6), and that is all it takes today.


Even if every believer were mobilized for evangelism, in some cities and nations, they would still be a minority in comparison to the total population. But this does not hinder saturation evangelism. When God does great things through a few people, all the glory goes to Him instead of man.


EVERY BELIEVER MUST BE MOBILIZED:


Saturation evangelism requires that every believer is motivated and mobilized for the task of evangelism. This mobilization involves a vertical relationship from God to you, motivating you with compassion for a lost and dying world. It also requires a horizontal relationship from one person to another. When God moves you by His Spirit, your zeal becomes contagious and spreads to others.


Traditionally, evangelism has centered around the pastor. In saturation evangelism, the emphasis changes from the pulpit to the pew. Yet it is not a movement which sets aside the pastor, for his role as leader is more important than ever. He is the one to mobilize the local congregation.


Mobilization of the church for evangelism must be based on the Scriptural concept of spiritual gifts, with each member functioning in an area for which he is gifted. (The Harvestime International Institute course "Mobilization Methodologies" explains "gift based mobilization" in detail.)


MOBILIZATION IS WITHIN THE FRAMEWORK OF THE CHURCH:


In saturation evangelism when we speak of the church, we mean the local congregation, the church as a denomination or group of churches, and the Church as the entire universal community of true believers.


Saturation evangelism should involve the local church, but it should also spread to denominational levels. If every local church and every denomination would give itself to such in-depth evangelism, this would result in the mobilization of the universal community of true believers. Basic to this framework of mobilization is the conviction that the Church is the channel which God has chosen to reveal the mystery of the Gospel to the world (Ephesians 3:9-10).


THE FOCUS IS "GO" RATHER THAN "COME":


In modern times many churches have adopted a "come" approach to evangelism. They open their church doors at service time and wait for the unsaved to come. But the New Testament teaches a "go" methodology. The church is to go out into the world with the Gospel. Saturation evangelism requires that people get out of the pew and into the world. The major evangelistic thrust is done by the church, but not in the church.


UNITY IN SPIRIT IS REQUIRED:


Saturation evangelism requires a united witness with other believers and other denominations. Such a witness does not require compromise of personal convictions or denominational emphasis. It is the unity of spirit enabled by God's Spirit (I Corinthians 12:13). Our spirits are united for the task of evangelism.


God's people are called the Body of Christ (Ephesians 4:12). If this is true, then we should act as a body and not as unrelated and uncoordinated members. (You will learn more about this as you study "Networking For Evangelism" in Chapter Fifteen.) Saturation evangelism attempts to enlist as many churches, missions, denominations, and organizations as possible to cooperate in evangelism.


IT IS GLOBAL IN NATURE:


The Great Commission was given to all followers of Christ and the command was to every creature. Saturation evangelism means using every legitimate means available, to reach every person, presenting the whole Gospel to all men.


In many cases, our evangelism goals are set too low. We have thought only in terms of one small geographic area. Working with limited funds and limited vision, we sometimes believe we have fulfilled our responsibility when we have worked in a small portion of a city or country.


When Christ commanded us to go and disciple the nations He meant for us to reach whole nations. Saturation evangelism is global in nature, for as whole nations are reached the world will be reached.


THE PATTERN OF SATURATION EVANGELISM


Saturation evangelism takes various forms as it is applied throughout the world. The cultures of the world differ and it is natural that evangelism in different cultures will assume different patterns. We must recognize a method that is effective in one culture may not be effective in another.


The basic pattern of saturation evangelism, however, is to design an outreach to penetrate every people group of every region of every nation and, ultimately, every nation of the world. Here is the basic pattern of saturation evangelism:


THE ORGANIZATION:


For total saturation of a nation, there must be a coordinated local, regional (state or province), and national evangelistic effort. To accomplish this, it is suggested that an evangelism committee be formed in each church. This committee would concern itself with evangelism of its specific geographic area and individual people groups within that area.


A city-wide committee should be formed by local churches to coordinate evangelism within the city. This would provide coordination rather than competition between churches at the local level. A regional committee would concern itself with the entire state or province, and a national committee with the national effort.


The composition of each committee will vary depending on local, regional, and national circumstances and goals. But each committee might have at least the following members:


-Chairman: Who directs and coordinates the committee.


-Assistant-Chairman: Who assists the chairman and substitutes for him in his absence.


-Secretary: To handle clerical duties, such as letters, notes on meetings, records, etc.


-Finance Chairman: Who handles funds, budgeting, and financial reporting.


-Prayer Chairman: Who directs coordinated prayer efforts for evangelism.


-Training Chairman: Who organizes training for evangelism.


-Supply Chairman: Who is responsible for literature necessary for the evangelistic thrust, such as tracts and Bibles, as well as supplies such as maps, visitation cards, evangelistic books, films, tapes, etc.


-Publicity Chairman: Who handles advertisement of special events on radio, television, newspapers, sound-cars, posters and flyers, as well as special mailings.


THE SCHEDULE:


There must be an organized schedule for saturation evangelism activities. Here is a suggested annual schedule:


January:                      Organize local, regional (state or province), and national committees.


February:                    Train leadership.


March:            Train every Christian.


April:                          Saturation of local

May:                           areas by various means of

June:                           evangelism.


July:                            Local evangelistic campaigns.


August:                       Local follow up.


September:                 Regional evangelistic campaigns.


October:                      Regional follow up.


November:                  National evangelistic campaign.


December:                  Follow up and planning for next year.


(In Chapter Twelve you will learn how to organize and conduct an evangelistic crusade. In Chapter Thirteen you will learn how to follow up new converts and train them in discipleship.)


THE METHODS:


Every conceivable type of evangelism is used at local, regional, and national levels, including the following:


-Prayer meetings focused on evangelism.


-Radio and television evangelism.


-Evangelistic audio and video cassettes.


-Evangelistic films.


-Evangelistic Bible study classes in the home, church, or a community meeting place.


-Evangelistic correspondence courses.


-Bussing people to church and evangelistic events.


-House-to-house evangelism.


-Evangelism of military personnel.


-Evangelism targeted to reach business and professional people.


-Literacy programs with an evangelistic emphasis.


-Medical programs with an evangelistic emphasis.


-Telephone evangelism.


-Sound cars sharing the Gospel and inviting people to evangelistic meetings.


-Personal letters sharing the Gospel.


-Institutional evangelism in jails, hospitals, old folks homes.


-Evangelism through Christian education: Sunday school, vacation Bible school, and Bible schools.

 

-Evangelism in parks, plazas, and other central gathering places.


-Evangelism at special events in a community, for examples a local fair, circus, or political rally.

-Evangelistic concerts and drama presentations.


-Literature evangelism: Distributing tracks, books, and other printed materials.


-Evangelism to special need groups: Alcoholics, drug addicted, hungry, homeless, child care, mentally or physically handicapped.


-Specialized evangelistic outreaches to children, youth, men, and women.


-Evangelizing international students at a local college or university.


-Campus evangelism of public schools.


-Mass crusades at local, regional, and national levels.


Some of the evangelistic methods in the previous list will not be possible in certain nations because of government regulations. But the point is that in saturation evangelism a serious effort is made to saturate the country with the Gospel in every legitimate way possible.


There is no limit to the variety of methods that can be included in saturation evangelism. Remember that the goal is to reach everyone with the Gospel.


PREPARING THE LOCAL CHURCH


Because regional and national efforts stem from what is done locally, and because saturation evangelism occurs within the framework of the local church, it is important that the local pastor know how to prepare his congregation for saturation evangelism. Here are some methods to help the pastor accomplish this objective:


-Set the example yourself: When your congregation sees you excited about evangelism and winning souls, they will be affected by your zeal.


-Direct the Sunday morning message to the unsaved. If unsaved people visit a church, it is usually on Sunday morning.


-Periodically, preach a series of messages on evangelism.


-Make media on evangelism available to your congregation: These might include video and audio cassette tapes, films, and a book table focusing on evangelism.


-Make soul-winning a prerequisite for church leadership. A qualification for every leader should be that he is winning souls. If your present leadership is not winning people to Christ, start by training them.


-Focus the Sunday school on soul winning: Teachers should be trained in how to present the Gospel and invite students to respond to it. Unsaved parents of children in the Sunday school should be reached.


-Make evangelism the primary emphasis of prayer meetings: Many prayer meetings today are becoming just another service with singing, good preaching, but little real praying. Lead your people back to real, Spirit-led, New Testament praying with a focus on the lost and raising up laborers for the harvest.


-Conduct on-going evangelism training: You can use this course, "Leaven-Like Evangelism," for that purpose. Keep repeating the class as new members transfer into your congregation or as new converts come to the Lord.


-Make a plan for your area: Take a map of your village or city. Divide it into sections and place a leader over each section. Then. . .

 

-Dedicate at least one evening a week to personal evangelism. We only do the things we make time to do, and this is true of evangelism. You will never begin to win souls until you set aside definite time for it.

 

-Set a definite day and time, meet with workers for prayer, and then send them out two by two. Provide them with assignment cards to visit families, businesses, stores, plazas, parks, gasoline stations, taverns, pool halls--everywhere--that is what saturation evangelism is all about.

 

-Institute a follow-up program: Train your people to be personally responsible for following up converts. Start a class for new converts to teach them the basic doctrines of the Christian faith and integrate them into the church. Chapter Thirteen of this course entitled "Decisions Or Disciples?" will assist you in this.


SELF-TEST


1. Write the Key Verse from memory.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


2. Define "saturation evangelism."


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


3. Summarize the Biblical basis of saturation evangelism.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


4. Discuss the basic principles of saturation evangelism.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


5. Discuss the pattern of saturation evangelism.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


6. Explain how a local pastor can prepare his congregation for saturation evangelism.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________




(Answers to tests are provided at the conclusion of the final chapter in this manual.)


FOR FURTHER STUDY


1. The Harvestime International Institute course, "Environmental Analysis," details how to analyze a village, city, region, or nation prior to penetrating it with the Gospel. It will assist you in identifying needs and formulating plans for saturation evangelism.


2. Make a plan for saturation evangelism for the city or village in which you live. Pray about what evangelistic activities should be included and then make a schedule to carry out your plans. What churches or Christian organizations could join you in penetrating your community?


3. If you are studying this course in prison, make a saturation evangelism plan for the institution where you are incarcerated. If your prison has a chaplain, seek his assistance.
































CHAPTER TWELVE


THE METHODS: MASS EVANGELISM



OBJECTIVES:


-Write the Key Verse from memory.

-Explain the benefits of a mass crusade.

-Summarize the information discussed in this lesson concerning:


            -Spiritual preparation

            -The crusade location

            -The facility contract

            -Dates and times

            -Advertising

            -Finances

            -Advance preparation of the facility

            -Training workers

            -Conducting the service

            -Follow-up


-Conduct a mass crusade.


KEY VERSE:

 

Behold ye among the heathen, and regard, and wonder marvelously, for I will work a work in your days, which ye will not believe, though it be told you. (Habakkuk 1:5)


INTRODUCTION


A community, region, or nation can not be saturated with the Gospel without mass evangelism. There are multitudes of people to be reached with the Gospel, and mass evangelism focuses on reaching large groups of people at one time.


In Chapter Nine you learned how to do personal evangelism. This lesson explains how to do mass evangelism. Both were used in New Testament times, and both are still important in evangelism today.


THE MASS EVANGELISTIC CRUSADE


One of the most effective methods of group evangelism is the mass evangelistic crusade which is a united effort of believers to reach every individual in a city with the Gospel of the Kingdom of God.


It is not just a series of meetings conducted within the four walls of a local church. It is not a revival, for revival speaks of reviving something that previously was alive but is near death. Revival is for believers who have grown cold in their spiritual experience. A mass evangelistic crusade is targeted to reach the unsaved population of an entire area.


The mass meeting approach to evangelism is Scriptural. Approximately 150 times in the New Testament we read that Jesus spoke to the multitudes. The Apostle Paul and the other disciples often ministered in the market places where crowds gathered.


A mass crusade reaches people who for years have been searching for God. It touches people who would never go into a church building. It provides opportunity for the demonstration of God's power to unbelievers. It reaches many people quickly with the Gospel and is an important method for reaching the rapidly growing population of the world.


Mass evangelistic crusades help identify spiritual ground that is ready to harvest and often result in the planting of new churches. If there are already existing churches in the area, growth is experienced as new converts are added to their fellowships.


SPIRITUAL PREPARATION


The suggestions in this lesson are primarily intended as a guide to the mechanical and physical aspects of conducting a crusade. But it must be clearly understood that if you attain material and mechanical perfection without having spiritual power, you will be as a "sounding brass or a tinkling cymbal.” Spiritual preparation is the most important part of any evangelistic effort.


Never allow yourself to fall into the trap of becoming so busy with the mechanical details of a crusade that you compromise the most important ingredient of all--spiritual preparation. A mass crusade is only effective as the Gospel of the Kingdom of God is presented with the anointing and power of the Holy Spirit present to save, heal, and deliver--and this requires spiritual preparation.


THE CRUSADE LOCATION


The purpose of a mass crusade is to bring the Gospel to those who have never heard it. Where you conduct a crusade may be determined in one of two ways:

 

First, you may receive an invitation from a pastor, mission agency, or believers in a certain community to come and conduct a crusade. Pray over every invitation and if you believe this to be God's will for you, accept it.

 

Second, you may be divinely directed by God to go to a certain area. In this case, you should contact believers in that area and tell them the burden of your heart and secure their cooperation if possible. If there are no believers or established churches in the area, or if you cannot secure local cooperation, you must still go if you believe God is sending you.


For a crusade with national impact, the capital city of the nation or a leading city should be selected. Once a city has been selected, then the exact location within that city must be decided. This is very important, because even if you do everything else well, if people cannot find or easily get to a location, your other efforts will be of no value. The ideal location in any city is to be as close as possible to the heaviest concentration of the population.

  

Here are some locations that might be used for a mass crusade:


A LARGE OPEN FIELD:


This has proven to be the best location. A platform can be erected in the best spot on the field and large numbers of people can be accommodated. It can usually be used at no or minimal cost.


A CENTRAL PARK:


Permission to use a central park or plaza usually has to be obtained from local authorities. The advantage of a park or plaza is that it is known to everyone in the community and attracts those that might not otherwise come. It also can often be obtained at no cost or for a small sum of money.


A SPORTS STADIUM:


Sports stadiums are usually well-known to people of a city. Be careful to obtain written permission for use of the actual playing field and for the construction of a platform on the field. The enclosed sports stadium provides for greater regulation of the crowd. Examine entrances and exits to be sure they are well placed and adequate.


(Note: Church buildings should not be used for a mass crusade as it hinders the effectiveness of the outreach. Many unsaved people do not feel comfortable going to a church. Some denominations forbid their members to enter churches of other denominations.)


In each location, here are some additional items to consider:


            -Seating.

            -Adequate parking.

            -Adequate entrances and exits.

            -Located near public transportation lines.

            -Available electricity for lighting and sound.

            -Toilet facilities.


THE FACILITY CONTRACT


You should have a signed contract for a facility before doing any advertising announcing the location of the crusade. Some basic things a contract should contain include:


1. Your name and the name of the person, company, or association that is leasing the premises to you.


2. The exact dates on which you will use the facilities.


3. The exact times you will use the facilities.


4. The total sum of money to be paid for use of the facility.


5. The method and exact dates payment will be made.


6. The exact time in advance of the first meeting when you can have access to the facility for preparation.


7. Other variables: Does the cost include electricity? Platform? Seating? Toilets? Cleanup?


CRUSADE DATES


The dates of the crusade may be affected by the facility you select. It may be available only on certain days or during certain months. Other factors to consider in selecting dates include:


-Weather: If the crusade is to be held outside, you must take into consideration the extremely cold, wet, and hot seasons and try to avoid these. Consult with the local people in the city in which the crusade is planned as to the best season to hold the crusade.


-Holidays: It is best to avoid holiday seasons because people are busy with their families and celebrations.


-Conflicting Events: Avoid conflicting community events such as fiestas, fairs, school events, political rallies, etc.




CRUSADE TIMES


To reach the greatest number of people, schedule the crusade at times when they can attend. Consider the work schedules in a local community, curfew regulations where applicable, and public transportation schedules.


CRUSADE ADVERTISING


If you fail to let people know that a crusade is going to be held, you will miss the great potential that a mass meeting provides. Even with a limited budget, you can reach a large area with news of the meeting. First, you must determine two things:


            1. What to include in your advertising.

            2. Where you are going to spend the available funds.


Let us consider each of these items:


WHAT YOU ARE GOING TO INCLUDE:


The dates, times, and clear directions concerning the location of the crusade must be included in all advertising. You should also communicate that Jesus still performs miracles of salvation, healing, and deliverance today. This creates interest in those who have a need for healing or deliverance themselves or have loved ones with such needs. It also brings people to the crusade with a spirit of expectancy, actually looking for the manifestation of God's power.


WHERE YOU WILL SPEND YOUR MONEY:


Here are some methods of advertising to consider in spending your advertising budget:


Handbills: Handbills or flyers are the most important piece of advertising you can prepare. This is a crusade announcement printed on inexpensive paper approximately 5 ½ by 8 ½ inches in size. They can be personally handed to people on the street, in plazas, parks, and stores. They can be given to local believers and churches to distribute. You can also distribute them by going house-to-house. Make the handbills as attractive as possible, but economical enough that you can have large quantities printed. Be sure to give the printer adequate time to produce the handbills by the date you want to receive them.


Distribute the handbills in all areas that you intend to reach by one week before the crusade begins. (In areas where persecution and opposition could occur, it is wise to wait until three days before the crusade begins to distribute handbills.) Organize teams of people to go out to definite areas to distribute the handbills. The best way to do this is use a map of the area and assign people to specific sections.


Banners: Banners are usually cloth signs that can be strung on ropes across major intersections in a city. Be sure every main road leading to the city is covered. It may be necessary to obtain permission from the city government to do this in some areas. You can also place banners in plazas and parks--wherever large numbers of people gather. Be sure all the information (dates, time, location) is included on the banner.


Posters: A poster is basically an enlargement of the handbill, with the same design and information. The difference is that it is much larger and printed on heavy paper so it can be displayed in every available area throughout the city.


Again, it is best to organize a team of people and tell them the exact locations they are to place the posters. The purpose is to place posters where people will see them, wherever there is the heaviest foot traffic in the city. Do not put just one poster in a location. People's eyes are attracted much more to a place where three or four of the same posters are located.


Sound Car: There are some people who cannot read posters, handbills, or banners, but they will be able to understand announcements they hear over a loud speaker. A sound car is a car with a public address system that circulates throughout the city announcing the crusade. Carefully prepare a written announcement to be read and mark a specific route for the car to travel so the same areas will not be covered repeatedly while others are neglected.


Newspapers: Newspaper display advertising should contain the basic information that is on the handbills and posters. Do not be afraid to ask for reduced advertising rates, as you are doing the city a public service. People will be saved from drug addiction, alcoholism, and healed of spiritual, mental, and physical conditions because of the crusade. The city will be a better place because of God at work in the community.


Many newspapers will do at least one free news article about the crusade. This article should include basic information on the dates, times, and location of the meeting, but may be more detailed than the display advertisement. Suggest that a reporter interview you as a visiting evangelist or cover the first crusade service.


Radio And Television: If radios and televisions are plentiful in an area, you should consider this type of advertising also. Again, you are doing the community a service, so do not be afraid to ask for reduced advertising rates. Be sure to have a written contract that states exactly what time of day the ads will run and the time length of the ad.


Here are some suggestions for using radio and television without cost:


-Contact individuals and organizations that air Christian radio or television programs locally. Ask them to announce the crusade during their programs.


-Suggest that a station provides brief public service announcements, as you are doing the community a service.


-Suggest that the station come to the first crusade meeting and tape a portion of it or actually air it live.


-Suggest that you, as a visiting evangelist, be interviewed on one of the local secular programs.


Special Mailings: Special letters of invitation can be sent to government and business leaders and others in the community.


Telephone: If there is telephone service in a city, obtain a copy of the printed telephone directory. Tear the book up into sections and divide its pages among different churches. Have local believers make personal calls inviting people to the meeting.


Verbal Announcements: Verbal announcements can be made in local club meetings, schools, community events, and churches.


CRUSADE FINANCES


It is acceptable to receive offerings in mass crusades, but in most cases, offerings should never be received until the latter part of the crusade; never on the first night. First, the power of God needs to invade the community to get hold of the hearts of the people. When the people have tasted the reality of Jesus, the powers of the enemy through rumor, slander, and false charges regarding finances cannot destroy the work.


Finances should be handled very openly. To assure this, it is wise to establish a local committee of Christians to handle the finances. The counting, recording, and keeping of money should never be left to only one person. A minimum of three people should be present at all times when an offering is counted and processed. If there is a local bank, it is wise to open a separate crusade account.


A complete record of all funds received and spent for the crusade should be kept. Items should be receipted, and the information made available to local participating pastors and churches. Offerings collected should be used to pay facility rental fees, advertising for the crusade, sound equipment rental, and related transportation, housing, and miscellaneous costs.


ADVANCE PREPARATION OF THE FACILITY


There are several things you must do to prepare the crusade facility prior to the first meeting. These include the following:




MARKING THE LOCATION:


The location of the crusade should be clearly marked with banners, posters, or signs on the grounds and in the immediate area.


PLATFORM:


If the facility does not have a platform, you will need to build one. The first thing to do is determine its location. Here are some things to consider:


1. Will the people naturally gather in front of the platform no matter how large the crowd becomes? If you do not have barriers on the side and behind the platform, you will have people in a complete circle all the way around you and it will be difficult to control the crowd and keep their attention.


2. If the crusade is held in an enclosure with a fence or wall, it is important to place the platform at the opposite end of the main entrance so people are not coming in around the platform and causing distraction during the service.


3. If the ground is not level you must consider the place where the people can see the platform best. If the facility does not have seating, the people will stand during the service and it is difficult if they have to stand on a slope or other irregularity.


4. If you are in a city plaza or park, you will want to locate the platform where there is the least amount of noise from traffic.


In many instances, lumber companies will donate the lumber for the construction of the crusade platform. In some cases, they might rent or loan the lumber. This is better than purchasing it because you return it when the crusade is over. You can consider placing the platform on top of large barrels, such as oil and bulk liquid barrels, if they are available. The size of the platform is determined by how many people you intend to have on it.


Be sure to include a ramp leading to the pulpit area from both sides of the platform. This will be used for testimonies of salvation, healing, and deliverance which you will bring up from the audience. A strong railing along the outer edge of this ramp is helpful for people to support themselves as they come up and down the ramp. Treads of narrow strips of wood nailed across the ramp provide good footing.

 

THE ALTAR AREA:


Rope off an area directly in front of the platform. This will prevent people from crowding too close to the front and provide an area to work with those who respond to altar calls. Design the ropes so they can be dropped if you want all the people to come forward during an altar call.


ELECTRICAL POWER:


Be sure to have a separate line for the lights and the power system. Never run both on the same line. Always have the power source and switch box in a location where no one can tamper with it.


SOUND SYSTEM:


Test the sound equipment thoroughly at least one hour before each service. It is helpful if you can have backup equipment or replacement parts readily available for emergencies.


RESERVED SECTIONS:


Mark any reserved sections clearly with signs. For example, you may have a reserved section for translation for those who do not speak the dominant language. You may need a section for musicians, soloists, or a crusade choir. You might also need reserved seats for workers.


MISCELLANEOUS PREPARATIONS:


Have offering containers ready for the offering and any counselor's supplies you may be using, such as badges, decision cards, tracts, etc.


TRAINING CRUSADE WORKERS


By training local believers to assist in the crusade, they become more than just spectators. They become part of the outreach for souls and will pray and get under the burden of the meeting with you rather than just waiting to see what will happen.


RECRUITING WORKERS:


Crusade workers should be mature believers from participating churches in the area where the crusade is conducted. Pastors can be used to recruit workers from their churches and to serve as advisors. If you are conducting a crusade where there are no churches, recruit a team of believers from another nearby area to come and assist in the crusade as workers.


SCHEDULING THE TRAINING SESSIONS


It is best to conduct worker training for the two nights just prior to the start of the crusade so training will be fresh in the minds of the people. The first session can be conducted in a local church or assembly hall, but the final session should be conducted right on the crusade grounds so there can be an actual placement of workers.


Just because someone has been a Christian for a long time does not mean he will not need training. Do not let anyone say, "I know what you want done, so I do not have to come to the training sessions." Local participating pastors and all others desiring to be crusade workers must be trained.


EQUIPPING THE WORKERS:


It is helpful if crusade workers are identified by wearing a badge or colored ribbon. Instruct them to dress as neatly as possible, and to work with members of their own sex when possible. They should be on the crusade grounds at least one half hour before the service begins.


Workers should also be equipped with a Bible, pencils or pens, and decision cards, if you are using them to record the names and addresses of new converts. If it is economically possible, it is good to have printed material to give to new converts such as Gospels of John or a tract giving them further instruction regarding the Christian life.


COUNSELING:


Workers should be given basic instruction in counseling. They should know how to lead a person to Jesus Christ and how to pray for those who need deliverance and healing. Use selected sections of this course to train them in these areas. There are also additional guidelines in the "For Further Study" section of this lesson.


Workers will minister to the unsaved responding to the call for salvation. They may also be called upon to minister to the demon possessed (see the following section on crowd control). They also assist in ministering deliverance and healing by working with people in their assigned sections as you are ministering the special prayers.


CROWD CONTROL:


Remember that you are in spiritual warfare for the souls of men and women, rescuing them from the eternal destiny of Hell. When you are doing this on a large scale, demon powers will not sit idly by and watch.


First of all, you must have the power and authority of the Holy Spirit and use it in the name of Jesus to bind the spirits of disruption. Secondly, you must commit this burden to your workers. They must be constantly alert to distractions and interruptions and know what to do when they occur.


Train the workers to move quickly and not to hesitate when a problem arises. Do not wait for the thing to work itself out, because it won't. Do not wait for someone else to respond. Recognize it immediately as a work of the Devil and deal with it as such.


The important thing here is to deal with the problem in such a way as not to cause a larger distraction than has already occurred. Do not do anything that will amplify the situation. Act in a way that will bring the attention back to the platform in the quickest way.


Very often, Satan will use a demon possessed person to begin a demonstration. In most cases, workers should not deal right there in the middle of the crowd with the person, but instead take them quickly outside the grounds and cast the devil out. The important thing is, whatever is done, it should be done as quickly and quietly as possible. Recognize distractions for what they are: Satan at work to hinder what God is doing.


As part of crowd control, you should train special workers for the platform and its access ramps. Ramp workers should keep unauthorized people off the platform, and assist authorized people coming to and from the platform. They will also receive the people with testimonies that workers bring from the crowd, verify the miracles, and then escort them to the platform.


Platform workers should include ushers posted at both sides of the platform who are trained to allow no one on the platform who has not been sent up by one of the ramp workers. At least two other platform workers should be available to help keep the testimony line in order.


As part of crowd control, you will want to train ushers to help people to and from seating (if seating is provided) and for collecting the offering. You may need to train workers to assist with parking if a lot of the crowd will arrive in automobiles. Make a study of the parking area and the approaches and prepare a diagram of how the traffic flow should proceed. You may want to reserve some parking areas for the workers and crusade team. Prepare necessary signs for the parking area, proper lighting if possible, and guard against vandalism (remember. . . you are in spiritual warfare).


SALVATION:


When you give the call for salvation, have workers trained to immediately stand up and move into the aisle to their assigned areas. The call for salvation indicates it is time for the ministry portion of the service. Train them to give full attention to what you are saying at this time. God may direct you to minister differently at various times, and they need to be ready to flow with you as the Holy Spirit moves.


Usually, because of the size of the response at a mass crusade, it is best to pray a mass prayer and have them repeat the sinner's prayer for forgiveness after you. It is important that those who respond to the salvation call receive follow up care, so be sure that one of three things happens:

 

-Counselors fill out a decision card with the name and address of the new convert so they can be contacted by local pastors for follow up.


or

 

-Announcement is made of a meeting the following morning for all those who accepted Jesus. During the morning meetings, follow-up care can be given to new believers.


or

 

-Those who respond for salvation are directed to a special counseling room or area on the grounds. Workers will accompany them to this location, provide additional counseling, and obtain their names and addresses on a decision card.


If you use decision cards, these should include a place for:


            -Name

            -Address

            -Telephone

 

-Response: A place to check whether they came for salvation, to renew their commitment to Christ, deliverance, healing, etc.

 

-Comments: A place for additional comments by the counselor who can record any information that might be helpful for follow up.

 

-Signature: A place for the signature of the counselor.


If decision cards are used, make them a two part form, if possible, so a carbon copy is created as the form is filled out. The original can be turned in to be followed up by local pastors. The copy can be retained by the worker so they can also follow up the new convert. Train your workers to print clearly as they complete these cards. Designate someone to be responsible for collecting and processing all the cards.


HEALING AND DELIVERANCE:


The demonstration of God's power verifies the preaching of the Gospel. As you will learn in Part Two of this course, healing and deliverance are a vital part of evangelism. To encourage the faith of believers, verify the Word of God, and attract unbelievers, it is helpful to share testimonies of what God is doing in the crusade. Remember that most unsaved people do not come believing. They are skeptical. Unless they see a demonstration of God's power, they will go away skeptical.


When you are praying for healing and deliverance, train the workers to pray with their eyes open. When you pray, tell the people in the audience to place their hand on their affliction. After prayer, ask them to begin doing something that they previously could not do. Train workers to watch as people place their hands on their affliction and after prayer as they begin to act in faith. Workers can then approach these people to obtain their testimonies.


(When you are training the workers, actually pray the prayers of healing and deliverance. Many times you will have healings right in the training sessions.) In the training sessions, show workers how to check a blind person by holding up fingers and having them count. For the deaf, sounds made behind the person can be duplicated, such as clapping the hands a certain number of times. Visible healings, such as the deaf, blind, growths, cripples, encourage faith more than internal healings which cannot be immediately verified.


When a worker has found someone who has experienced healing or deliverance, train them to bring (not send) that person to one of the ramp workers. The ramp worker can then escort them to the platform and you can interview them and share the testimonies of what God is doing. The worker then returns to his assigned area to continue to minister and receive testimonies.


PLACEMENT ON THE GROUNDS:

   

Use a diagram in the first training sessions to show workers where they will be placed in the crusade facility. On the second night of training which is conducted at the crusade facility,


actually place each worker in the location where they will be during each service.


Have enough workers in the altar area to stretch arm-to-arm along this area. They are important for crowd control and in ministering to those who come forward.


Put the specially trained ramp and platform workers in their places and then evenly distribute the remaining workers throughout the facility. Be sure to station workers at entrances and exits and to secure power sources.


CONDUCTING THE CRUSADE SERVICE


Here are some suggestions for conducting the crusade service:


STARTING THE SERVICE:


Schedule special music to play 30 minutes before the service begins. The music will attract people to the location and prepare the hearts of those who have already gathered to receive the Word of God. Instruct the musicians and soloists which songs to use. Select songs that are lively, inspiring, and evangelistic. Do not choose sentimental songs or ones difficult to understand. Use songs that display life and enthusiasm that will attract the unsaved.


After the first night, you will have people who have been saved, healed, and delivered. Have some of them testify during this 30 minute period prior to service. Interview them and ask specific questions so you can prevent anyone from taking over the service (another disruptive strategy of Satan).


MINISTRY OF THE WORD:


At the announced time, start the crusade service. Keep preliminaries to a minimum. The purpose of an evangelistic crusade is to reach souls for Jesus. To do that, the Word of God must be preached and the power of God demonstrated. People have come with great spiritual, physical, and emotional needs. They are not there to hear a long line of announcements, jokes, introductions, and unimportant chatter.


Before you start to preach, announce to the people that you will pray for healing and deliverance after the sermon. Many of the people have come to be healed, and if you start to preach without mentioning this they may think they have misunderstood about the service. If you make it clear you will pray for the sick after the sermon, you will have better attention to your message.


THE PRAYER FOR SALVATION:


At the conclusion of the sermon, the first thing to deal with is salvation. Emphasize that the healing of the soul is far more important than the healing of the body. You will pray for their body, but first you want to pray for their souls, that God will heal them spiritually and forgive their sins through the blood of Jesus Christ.


Usually, because of the size of the response at a mass crusade, it is best to pray a mass prayer and have them repeat the sinner's prayer for forgiveness after you. It is important that these people receive follow-up care. So be sure, as was mentioned in the worker's training section, that one of three things happens:

 

-Counselors fill out a decision card with the name and address of the new convert so they can be contacted by local pastors for follow up.


or

 

-Announcement is made of a meeting the following morning for all those who accepted Jesus. During the morning meetings, follow-up care can be given to new believers.


or

 

-Those who respond for salvation are directed to a special counseling room or area on the grounds. Workers will accompany them to this location, provide additional counseling, and obtain their names and addresses on a decision card.


THE PRAYERS FOR HEALING AND DELIVERANCE:


Following the salvation prayer, it is time to begin the prayers for healing and deliverance. Every ministry situation is different, and at times God will lead you in specific ways as to how to minister. But here are some general suggestions for ministering healing in the mass crusade environment.


In a big crowd, it is not possible to pray for each one individually. First, pray several prayers and focus each one on a specific illness. Have the workers bring testimonies to the platform from those who receive healing. The faith of the audience will be encouraged by these testimonies, and then you can pray a final mass prayer of deliverance for all types of afflictions. Remember, it is important that you are open to the leading of God in this area. There is no set pattern.


CLOSING THE SERVICE:


In closing the service, be sure to announce the next crusade meeting and the morning class for new converts. Give specific information on times and places.


CRUSADE FOLLOW UP


Each convert from the crusade should be receive follow up care. This fulfills the "teaching all things" that is to follow conversion as directed by the Great Commission.


During the salvation altar call one of two things happened:

 

1. The new convert filled out a decision card: This was done either in the altar area or in a special counseling room. These cards should be given to local pastors who will assume the follow-up care.

 

2. A morning class for new converts was announced: During the morning classes new converts should receive immediate follow-up care and their names and addresses secured for extended follow-up care by local pastors.


The motto for follow-up care should be "Never Let Go." Do not let go of the new convert until he is integrated into the fellowship of a local church.


Chapter Thirteen of this course provides information on follow up teaching of new believers.










SELF-TEST


1. Write the Key Verse from memory.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


2. Explain the benefits of a mass crusade.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


3. On a separate sheet of paper, summarize the information discussed in this lesson concerning:


            -Spiritual preparation

            -The crusade location

            -The facility contract

            -Dates and times

            -Advertising

            -Finances

            -Advance preparation of the facility

            -Training workers

            -Conducting the service

            -Follow up







(Answers to tests are provided at the conclusion of the final chapter in this manual.)


FOR FURTHER STUDY


1. Here are some guidelines to give workers in training them how to counsel with those responding to altar calls:


(1) Introduce yourself (as "counselor") to the person who has responded to the call (the "counselee").


(2) Ask for his name and write it down so you can remember it during your conversation. (If decision cards are being used, print it on the decision card. If not, just write it on a piece of paper for reference.)


(3) Ask him, "Why did you raise your hand (or come forward) tonight?" This will provide opportunity for the counselee to express his need to you.


(4) There is no way to mention every problem that a person might express in answer to this question, but God's Word does contain an answer for every situation. If you encounter questions or difficulties you cannot handle, call upon one of the pastors or another worker to assist you.*


(5) Never force a person to make a decision. Allow God's Spirit to do the work.


(6) After identifying the specific spiritual need of the counselee through conversation, provide counsel from God's Word and then pray with him. If he has responded to the call for salvation, lead him in a sinner's prayer asking forgiveness for sins and accepting Jesus Christ as Savior. Keep your counsel as simple as possible. (Do not try to teach all the doctrines of the Christian faith in just a few minutes!) If he needs healing or deliverance, minister in these areas.


(7) Provide the counselee with any printed material you have been given to be used for this purpose, i.e., a Gospel of John or tract with further information on living the Christian life.


(8) When you finish ministering to the person, complete the remainder of the decision card. Fill in the address and telephone information, then check the appropriate decision boxes (for salvation, deliverance, healing, etc.) Record any comments that might be helpful in following up the counselee





_______________




* Note: During training sessions, you might cover common responses and how to deal with them. For example, those who come forward seeking salvation, assurance of salvation, deliverance from addictive substances, etc.

(9) Turn in the decision cards to the person who has been designated to collect them. If the decision card is a two-part form, turn in the original copy and keep the carbon copy so you can also follow up on the person who you counseled.


(10) Follow up on the counselee within 48 hours. Check to see how he is doing. "Never let go" until he becomes part of a local church fellowship.


2. This chapter concerned a common method of mass evangelism which is the evangelistic crusade. There is no way we can discuss every type of event you may conduct as you do group evangelism. You may decide to conduct conferences, seminars, revivals, concerts, etc. Here are some general guidelines for planning any type of a ministry event:


(1) Establish the purpose of the ministry event: What is the purpose of the seminar, conference, revival, crusade, etc? Purpose will guide your planning.


(2) Set the dates and times of the event.


(3) Select a location. The things to consider in selecting a facility are:


-Size: It must be adequate for the number of people you expect to attend.


-Features: It must have the features you require for the event. For example, if you plan to meet as a large group and then break down in several small groups, you need a facility with one large meeting room and several smaller rooms. If you are going to cook and serve meals, you will need a facility with a kitchen.


-Location: It must be easily reached by public transportation and located as close as possible to the people you want to attend.


-Cost: You must be able to afford it.


(4) Form a committee and delegate responsibilities for:


-General Coordination: The coordinator will supervise all others in their duties and coordinate all parts of the event.


-Scheduling: The schedule should include:

 

-Everything that needs to be done before the event: Who will do it, and by when?

 

-The schedule of the actual event: What will happen at what times on the actual day of the event?

 

-Any follow-up items that need to be done after the event.


-Budget: To set the budget for the event, raise funds, pay bills, take offerings during the events, and get offerings or honorariums to guest speakers.


-Facility Setup: These are some items you might need to set up in the facility: Chairs, a platform, tables, offering containers, microphones, instruments, pulpit, audio-visual equipment, supplies for counseling and registration.


-Registration: Will you register people? If so, what materials will be given out at the time of registration? How will you handle registration lines? Will there be a cost to register? Will you need name badges? What forms will you need? What personnel will be required?


-Publicity: How will you advertise your event? Select someone to handle publicity such as special mailings, telephone notification, radio, television, newspapers, posters, flyers, announcements in local churches, etc.


-Counseling: Have someone train counselors to assist people with spiritual needs. These counselors should know how to lead someone to Christ, how to pray for the sick, and how to minister deliverance. They should be equipped with Bibles, tracts, and name and address cards on which they record information about those who seek spiritual help. These cards will enable you to follow up these people after the ministry event.


-Guest Speakers: Will you have guest speakers for this event? If so, you need someone in charge of this area to contact and invite them, get schedules and information to them, provide transportation and accommodations if needed, and minister to their personal needs during the event.


-Music: Select a music chairman to obtain the needed instruments and musicians, direct the choir, plan special music, and lead the congregational singing.


-Nursery: Will you provide care for babies or young children during the event? If so, you will need someone to set up the facility and select people to care for the children.


-Sales: If you plan to sell Bibles, Christian books or tapes, food, etc., you will need someone in charge of this area.


-Ushers: Have someone in charge of ushers who will seat people, distribute and collect materials, collect offerings, and solve problems and disturbances during meetings.


-Sound: If you are planning a large event, you will need a good sound system. You need someone who is knowledgeable in this area and has the proper equipment.


-Audio Or Visual Taping: Do you plan to make audio or video tapes of this event? If so, you need someone to schedule personnel to do the taping, reproduce copies, obtain the needed supplies and equipment.


-Participants: You need someone to coordinate participants. For example, to plan transportation, food or lodging if needed and to help people with practical problems, questions, etc. during the event.


-Follow-up: Always select a person to handle follow up to the event including collecting materials that belong to you, cleaning the facility, taking down equipment, thanking those who assisted you, and designating someone to handle the follow up of new converts.


































CHAPTER THIRTEEN


DECISIONS OR DISCIPLES?



OBJECTIVES:


Upon completion of this chapter you will be able to:


-Write the Key Verses from memory.

-Define "convert."

-Define "disciple."

-List six areas of instruction to be covered in immediate follow up of a new convert.

-Identify nine discipleship principles Jesus used.

-Explain the true test of discipleship.

-Provide immediate follow-up for a new convert.

-Provide extended follow-up for a new convert.


KEY VERSES:

 

And after he had spent some time there, he departed and went over all the country of Galatia, and Phyrgia in order, strengthening all the disciples.

            (Acts 18:23)

 

Confirming the souls of the disciples, and exhorting them to continue in the faith, and that we must through much tribulation enter into the Kingdom of God. (Acts 14:22)


INTRODUCTION


You hear often of the Great Commission, but do you really understand the mission which Jesus actually gave His followers?


            -Was the command just to gain new converts?

            -Was it just to conduct evangelistic crusades?

            -Was it only to win people to the Lord and then move quickly on to another area?


Let us read His instructions again:

 

Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost;

 

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. (Matthew 28:19-20)


The priority was going to all nations, teaching them the Gospel, baptizing them, and then providing further follow-up teaching on all Jesus had commanded. The commission to evangelize was not complete without the teaching that followed conversion.


DECISIONS OR DISCIPLES?


Two types of teaching are involved in this commission:


First: Teaching the Gospel to lead men and women to salvation. People must hear the Gospel in order to respond to it, repent from sin, and be born again:

 

Go ye therefore and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. (Matthew 28:19)


New believers are called "converts." A convert is a believer in Jesus who has been born again by faith and has become part of the Kingdom of God.


Second: Teaching after conversion. After a person has been taught the Gospel and come to Jesus, they must learn how to follow after Him:

 

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. (Matthew 28:20)


The Great Commission reveals that new converts are to be instructed in all Jesus taught. This process is sometimes called "follow up" or "discipleship."


Paul was careful to follow up new converts and churches. The Scriptures record that he. . .

 

. . . went over all the country of Galatia, and Phyrgia in order, strengthening all the disciples. (Acts 18:23)

 

Confirming the souls of the disciples, and exhorting them to continue in the faith, and that we must through much tribulation enter into the Kingdom of God. (Acts 14:22)




DEFINITION OF DISCIPLESHIP


A "disciple" is a convert who is established in the basics of the Christian faith and is capable of raising up new converts and discipling them. The word "disciple" means a learner, a pupil, someone who learns by following. It is more than head knowledge. It is learning that changes a person's lifestyle. Discipling is not just dispensing information, it is developing individuals.


THE DECISION/DISCIPLE CYCLE


Decision is only the first step of true discipleship. Converts must progress beyond decision to become responsible members of the Body of Christ capable of raising up other new believers. Winning new converts is important, but training men and women to follow Jesus and become spiritually reproductive is equally important. Each one you train will convert others, disciple them, and train them to reach others. This is the Biblical plan of discipleship demonstrated by Jesus. He chose twelve men, discipled them, and trained them to reach others.


The following diagram illustrates the continuing cycle of evangelism and discipleship:



THE CONTINUING CYCLE


Evangelism

                                        ➚ ➘

Disciples Converts


Discipling



Evangelism results in new converts. Discipling results in disciples who are able to evangelize, produce new converts, and disciple them. The cycle then continues to repeat the same pattern.


IMMEDIATE FOLLOW-UP


Immediately upon conversion, a new convert should be given instruction in the following areas:






ASSURANCE:


Help the new believer be sure of his salvation and confident in his relationship with Jesus Christ.

CONFESSING CHRIST PUBLICLY:


Encourage the new convert to share his new experience with another believer, relative, or friend. Confession is an important part of the salvation experience:

 

That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.

 

For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. (Romans 10:9-10)


BAPTISM IN WATER:


In the book of Acts, new believers were baptized in water immediately upon conversion or as soon as possible thereafter. The records in Acts chapters 8, 9, and 16 illustrate this. The importance of water baptism is explained in detail in the Harvestime International Institute course "Foundations Of Faith."


BAPTISM OF THE HOLY SPIRIT:


The book of Acts records several examples of how new converts were led to experience the baptism of the Holy Spirit immediately after conversion. See Acts 8:14-17; Acts 19:1-6. The baptism of the Holy Spirit is explained in detail in the Harvestime International Institute course, "Ministry Of The Holy Spirit."


DEVELOPING A DEVOTIONAL LIFE:


The new believer should immediately be encouraged to begin a daily habit of Bible study and prayer. Teach the pattern of the Lord's prayer (Luke 11:1-4) and encourage him to start reading the book of John.


BECOMING PART OF A LOCAL CHURCH:


It is very important that the new believer becomes part of a local church fellowship (Hebrews 10:25). When you disciple a new convert, you do not take the place of the pastor. God sets pastors in the church to provide long-term spiritual care for believers. Every believer needs to be under the care of a pastor.



Help new believers get to church. Offer to provide transportation or to walk with them to church. Introduce them to people in the church and see that they become part of a Bible study and prayer group.


The important thing to remember in immediate follow-up is NEVER LET GO of the new convert until he is established in a local church. If there is no local church, then one needs to be planted. Section Three of this course will assist you in doing this.


EXTENDED FOLLOW-UP


In studying the relationship of Jesus and His followers, several principles of discipleship are revealed. These are important in the continuing, extended follow-up of a new believer:


1. SELECTION:


Every new convert should be discipled extensively by someone, but you will not be able to disciple everyone. You are only one person and are limited in the number you can disciple at any one time. Jesus selected some who He trained extensively. Others were told to return to their own homes, villages, or religious leaders.


You always should try to provide immediate follow-up, but you may not be able to provide extended follow-up to every one you win to the Lord. This is why discipleship should be done in the context of the local church. The pastor should be sure that each new convert is properly discipled by a mature believer.


Pray about who you are to disciple extensively. Pray about who is turned to the pastor or others in the church for further discipleship. If you have the leadership gift of being an evangelist, you may not be in one place long enough to accomplish the extended follow up of new converts. You must select pastors or leaders to accomplish this ministry.


2. ASSOCIATION:


When Jesus called His disciples, He called them to be with Him. He shared His life intimately with His disciples. He spent time with them in both formal ministry situations and informal circumstances.


Discipleship will not happen through committee meetings or Sunday worship services alone. There must be close association with those whom you disciple. You must share your life with them.


3. CONSECRATION:


Out of association with Jesus, consecration developed. Jesus called His disciples to consecration to a Person, not a denomination or organization. Such consecration called for absolute obedience to God’s Word and purposes. (See John 4:34; 5:30; 15:10; 17:4; and Luke 22:42.) Do not make disciples dependent upon you. Make them dependent upon God through the process of consecration.


4. VISION:


Jesus motivated His followers by giving them spiritual vision. He called them to a task greater than the routine of every day living. He called His followers to be fishers of men (Matthew 4:19). He gave them a vision of worldwide spiritual harvest (John 4:35). He challenged them with the revelation of the Kingdom of God (Matthew 13).


Without vision, people perish (Proverbs 29:18). They have no direction and no motivation. Discipleship must include the communication of spiritual vision to motivate the mission. The Harvestime International Institute courses, "Strategies For Spiritual Harvest" and "Developing A Biblical World View," will help you develop spiritual vision in new converts.


5. INSTRUCTION:


The extended follow-up of new converts should include instruction in all that Jesus commanded. First, they should receive instruction in basic doctrines of the Christian faith. The Harvestime International Institute course, "Foundations Of Faith," is helpful for this purpose. It includes instruction based on Hebrews 6:1-3 which includes:


            -Repentance from dead works.

            -Faith toward God.

            -The doctrine of baptisms.

            -The laying on of hands.

            -Resurrection of the dead.

            -Eternal judgment.


Following training in these basic areas, students should be taught "Kingdom Living", "Ministry Of The Holy Spirit," "Knowing God's Voice," "Spiritual Warfare," "Creative Bible Study Methods," and "Basic Bible Survey." These are all courses in Module Two of the Harvestime International Institute.


The goal of instruction is to bring the disciple to perfection. Perfection means spiritual maturity which is being "complete, finished, and mature." A perfect Christian is one who has achieved spiritual maturity, bringing his body, soul, and spirit under the control of the Holy Spirit. The word "perfection" is similar to the word "sanctification" or "consecration," which are also used in the Bible. "Sanctification" means holiness and "consecration" means to be set apart in righteousness.


There are two levels of perfection:

 

-Initial perfection, which is forgiveness of sins through the salvation experience.

 

-Progressive perfection, which is the continuous process of being changed into the image of Christ. This is described in Romans chapters 7-8; Philippians 3:12; I John 1:8-9.


6. DEMONSTRATION:


Jesus did not teach through verbal instruction alone. He demonstrated what He taught. He taught healing and demonstrated it by healing the sick. He taught the authority of the believer over Satan and demonstrated it by casting out demons. He taught concern for the poor and illustrated it by feeding the multitudes.


The disciples were not only students, they were eye witnesses to the demonstration of God's power. They later said they were teaching "That which we have seen and heard as eye witnesses" (I John 1:1). Jesus also demonstrated His teaching by the way He lived. He said:

 

For I gave you an example that you also should do as I did to you.

            (John 13:15)


7. PARTICIPATION:


Mere knowledge is not enough. To be effective, knowledge must be applied. The disciples not only listened to the teachings of Jesus and observed the demonstrations of power, they also participated. Teaching a subject is not enough to assure learning. Teaching alone is like trying to learn brain surgery by reading a book. New disciples must have actual experience in what they are learning. They must gain experience in how to share the Gospel, how to pray for the sick, how to cast out demons, etc. Jesus provided such opportunities for His disciples. Read Mark 6:7-13 and Luke 9:1-6. Jesus sent His disciples out to experience what they had been taught. Make sure your disciples become doers of the Word and not hearers only.


8. SUPERVISION:


When the disciples of Jesus returned from their ministry trip, Jesus evaluated their efforts (Luke 9:10). Throughout the entire training process Jesus supervised His disciples. They were not left alone in their struggles. He was there to correct, rebuke, and encourage them. As disciples meet frustration and obstacles, you must teach them how to meet these challenges.


9. DELEGATION:


The final stage of the discipleship process was when Jesus delegated His followers to become disciple-makers themselves. He gave them the task of spiritual multiplication throughout the nations of the world. The courses in Module Three of Harvestime International Institute training will help you teach disciples how to multiply spiritually. Modules Four and Five will show them how to organize and mobilize the spiritual resources they develop. Use this course to train them in evangelizing.


THE TRUE TEST OF DISCIPLESHIP


The true test of discipleship is what happens when you are no longer present with those whom you have discipled. Do they continue to be faithful to what you have taught them? Do they evangelize and produce new converts and disciples? If so, your follow-up has been successful:

 

A disciple is not above his teacher, but everyone when he is fully taught will be like his teacher. (Luke 6:40, Revised Standard Version)






























SELF-TEST


1. Write the Key Verses from memory.


_______________________________________________________________________________


2. What does the word "convert" mean?


_______________________________________________________________________________


3. Define "disciple."


_______________________________________________________________________________


4. List six important areas of instruction in the immediate follow-up of a new convert.


_______________________________ _______________________________


_______________________________ _______________________________


_______________________________ _______________________________


5. Identify nine discipleship principles revealed in the study of Jesus and His disciples.


______________________________ _______________________________


______________________________ _______________________________


______________________________ _______________________________


______________________________ _______________________________


_____________________________


6. What is the true test of discipleship?


_______________________________________________________________________________




(Answers to tests are provided at the conclusion of the final chapter in this manual.)


FOR FURTHER STUDY


1. I Thessalonians 1:2-9 describes the important aspects of good follow-up. The goal you want people to reach after accepting Jesus is identified in I Thessalonians 1:9.


2. Consider starting a "spiritual adoption" program in your church where new believers are assigned to members for extended follow-up care.


3. Note the different ways the Apostle Paul followed up his disciples:

 

            -With letters:                                                              I Thessalonians 1:1

            -With prayer:                                                              I Thessalonians 1:2; 3:10

            -By sending representatives:                                      I Thessalonians 3:1-5

            -By personal contact:                                                              I Thessalonians 2:18


4. There are many characteristics of a true disciple of Jesus when you consider the total revelation of God's Word, but Jesus emphasized nine specific characteristics. A disciple is one who:


            (1) Forsakes All:                                                        Luke 14:33

            (2) Denies Self:                                                         Matthew 16:24; Luke 14:27

            (3) Follows Jesus:                                                      Matthew 16:24

            (4) Makes The Kingdom Of God His Priority:          Matthew 6:31,33

            (5) Demonstrates God's Love:                                   John 13:34-35

            (6) Abides In The Word:                                           John 8:31

            (7) Is Obedient:                                                         John 8:31

            (8) Is A Servant:                                                        Matthew 10:25; 20:26-28

            (9) Glorifies God Through Fruitfulness:                   John 15:8


5. Read Luke 9:57-62 in your Bible. In this passage three men approach Jesus desiring to be disciples. To each, Jesus reveals a different aspect of what the call to discipleship involves:


Considered Costs: Luke 9:57-58


The first man would follow Jesus without waiting to be called. He attempts to become a disciple through self-effort. Jesus said, "If you follow me, this is what you will face." He explained that true discipleship is costly. It cannot be achieved through self-effort.


Proper Priorities: Luke 9:59-60


The second man was called by Jesus to follow. To "follow" means to come after one that goes before, to imitate an example. It involves both belief and obedience. The disciple must leave the old life behind because of the call alone. What decisions and partings and sacrifices this might require remain unknown. The follower leaves a life of security for one of insecurity in the eyes of the world. The commitment is not to a program, but to a person. That person is the Lord Jesus Christ.


In the Luke passage, the response of this man to the call to follow was "suffer me first. . . " He wanted to follow Jesus, but it was not his priority. Jesus would never suggest that a follower of His ignore the needs of his parents (John 19:25-27). It is a matter of priorities which is stressed in this story. This man wanted to bury his father first. At the critical moment when Jesus calls a man to follow Him, nothing must be placed before response to that call.


Following Jesus does not mean every disciple must leave their job and home. What it does mean for all is that it will require a change in lifestyle. In some cases it may also mean leaving home, jobs and loved ones for the sake of the Gospel. You must follow wherever Jesus leads. Discipleship must be the priority.


Absolute Aims: Luke 9:61-62


The third man in Luke 9:57-62 wanted to follow, but he wanted to do so on his own terms. Bidding his family farewell was a normal thing to do, but Jesus had called him to follow. What was his real aim in life? Discipleship or doing his own thing? This man's aims in life were not settled. He was holding back, torn between the old life and the new to which Jesus called.


6. Here is a plan for the first three follow-up sessions with a new believer:


Session One: (Within 24 hours after conversion)


___Contact the new convert and arrange a place and time to meet.(This will usually be a place where one of you lives.)


___In the first meeting, seek to establish a relationship of openness and friendship. Let the convert know how to reach you in case he has questions or problems between regularly scheduled meetings.


___Ask if he has any questions and try to answer them.


___Explain your role in follow-up and what discipling means.


___Begin to lead him in the areas for immediate follow-up discussed in this lesson which include:


-Assurance Of Salvation.                    -Baptism Of The Holy Spirit

-Confessing Christ Publicly.              -Developing A Devotional Life. (Be sure he has a Bible).

-Baptism In Water.                             -Becoming Part Of A Local Church.


___Leave a copy of the Harvestime International Institute course, "Foundations Of Faith," and encourage the convert to read the first lesson.


___Pray together.


___Arrange the time and place of your next session.


Second Session: (Within one week after conversion)


___Review the first lesson in "Foundations Of Faith" together.

___Ask if he has any questions and try to answer them.

___Assign the second lesson in "Foundations Of Faith."

___Continue to guide him in the six important steps described under "immediate follow-up."

___Ask him to share any difficulties or doubts he has had.

___Pray together, covering specific items raised by your discussion.


(The remaining sessions should be spaced one week apart.)


Third Session:


___Review the second lesson in "Foundations Of Faith" together.

___Ask if he has any questions and try to answer them.

___Assign the third lesson in "Foundations Of Faith."

___Continue to guide him in the six steps described under "immediate follow-up."

___Ask him to share any difficulties or doubts he has had.

___Pray together, covering specific items raised by your discussion.



(Remaining sessions can follow the pattern set in session three. At the end of two months, review his progress on the six items listed in "immediate follow-up”).
















CHAPTER FOURTEEN


PLANNING FOR EVANGELISM



OBJECTIVES:


-Write the Key Verse from memory.

-Describe the benefits of planning.

-Explain why planning is Biblical.

-Use the model for planning given in this lesson to plan for evangelism.


KEY VERSE:

 

The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because He hath anointed me to preach the Gospel to the poor; He hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised. (Luke 4:18)


INTRODUCTION


In the book of Acts there are two major strategies of world evangelism practiced by the early Church which are still appropriate today. The first is spontaneous evangelism, where believers responded immediately to opportunities and spontaneously shared the Gospel. The second is planned strategy for evangelism. Paul's missionary journeys and planting of churches are evidences of planned strategy.


All believers should be alert to opportunities for spontaneous evangelism, but planning for evangelism is a deliberate step you must take. In this lesson you will learn how to plan for evangelism.


PLANNING FOR SPIRITUAL HARVEST


Planning is much like farming. There is no such thing as farming in general. A farmer may raise wheat in the Midwest of the United States, oranges in Israel, and rice in the Philippines.


In each of these places there are similarities: Plants are cultivated and there are common factors like soil, nutrients, seed, water, light, diseases, pests, and tools. Yet farming is very different depending upon the crop being grown, the location, and the available technology.

So it is in spiritual harvest. You cannot engage in evangelism in general any more than the farmer can farm in general. If you are to be successful, you must establish clear plans, priorities, strategies, and work assignments. You must know your purpose and plan to fulfill that purpose.


BENEFITS OF PLANNING


Planning helps you be a wise steward of the Gospel and resources of ministry such as buildings, property, equipment, finances, and the spiritual gifts of believers in your care. Planning provides direction, helps you make good decisions, establishes priorities for ministry, and makes you accountable by evaluation. It permits you to act decisively rather than react to crisis situations.


PLANNING IS BIBLICAL


The Bible is filled with stories of men and women who made plans under the direction of God. Noah planned to build the ark. Abraham set objectives for his servant, Eleazar (Genesis 24). Joseph planned for the years of famine (Genesis 41). Moses was given a plan to deliver Israel from slavery and plans for building the tabernacle. Joshua made detailed plans for conquering the promised land.


David prepared for the building of the temple. King Hezekiah had a plan to unify Israel, and Nehemiah planned to rebuild the wall. Old Testament prophets revealed God's plans for the nations, and the book of Revelation reveals God's plans for the future.


Some people believe planning hinders the freedom of the Holy Spirit, but this is not true. After the great outpouring of the Holy Spirit in Acts 2, it is only a short time later that planning and organization began under the direction of the Holy Spirit (Acts 6). The miracles which occurred in the early Church certainly demonstrate that planning did not interfere with the work of the Holy Spirit!


Planning can be a form of worship, a time during which you reflect on God's purpose and plans and open your spirit to His guidance. When you pray and study God's Word and plan under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, planning is a spiritual activity.


Planning does not hinder, but rather cooperates with God. One example of this is the plan of Joshua at Ai (Joshua 8). He had a plan (verse 4) but it did not hinder God's miraculous working (verse 18). Both natural planning and supernatural events worked together in harmony to accomplish the objective.


Jesus had a plan of ministry. He planned to preach the Gospel, heal the sick, cast out demons, and do miracles confirming God's Word. He would fulfill God's purpose by dying for the sin of all mankind, destroying the works of the enemy, and rising from the dead in power and glory. Jesus said:

 

The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because He hath anointed me to preach the Gospel to the poor, He hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised. (Luke 4:18)


Paul made plans, otherwise the Holy Spirit could not have changed them as indicated in Acts 16:6-10. Jesus gave the general plan for evangelism in Acts 1:8. When we plan for evangelism we are just filling in the details.


WHAT IS A PLAN?


Any statement about what will happen in the future is a statement of faith. Plans are statements of faith. To make no statements about the future is to exhibit no faith.


A plan is a way of describing how you will go about reaching your goal of evangelism. Planning forces you to seek the mind of God and the will of the Holy Spirit. What does God desire? How can you conform to His will for your life and ministry? Planning also helps you decide what you will not do, for it excludes certain things.


The Harvestime International Institute course, "Management By Objectives," will assist you in planning. Always remember, however--you can spend a lifetime doing research and planning and never get around to doing the thing that originally motivated the research. It is research and planning for evangelism, not for its own sake.


A MODEL FOR PLANNING


Here is a model that will help you continuously plan for evangelism:



                                                Define the mission

                       ➚ ➘

Evaluate the plan                                                        Determine the methods

             │ │

Implement the plan                                                     Determine the means

             │ │

                                              Make the plan 
















This model begins with the assumption that we do not know God's strategy for a particular people. It helps us set aside our preconceived plans and ideas and be open to the leading of the Holy Spirit. Now study the details about this model:


DEFINE THE MISSION:


The great spiritual harvest we are to reap is made up of many fields of many nations. You must determine specifically what is your mission. Who are you trying to evangelize? Where do they live? What are they like? You need to define the harvest field in terms of its geography, culture, and language. The Harvestime International Institute course, "Environmental Analysis," will assist you in this.


DETERMINE THE BEST METHOD OF EVANGELISM:


There are many methods of evangelism described in this course. On the basis of what you learn as you define your mission, prayerfully determine the best methods of evangelism. It is very important to do this so you will not waste your efforts. For example, television evangelism would not be successful in an area where people do not have television. Literature evangelism would not be successful where there is a high percentage of illiteracy. Remember that part of the strategy of methods is determining what you will not do as well as what you will do.


DETERMINE THE MEANS FOR EVANGELISM:


What means do you have for evangelism? Who will you use to evangelize a certain people group or area? What finances do you have available? What material resources (such as equipment, printed material, other similar items) will you need?


MAKE THE PLAN FOR EVANGELISM:


Your plan should focus on the goal of evangelizing rather than civilizing. It should focus on extending the Gospel of the Kingdom of God, not the rules of a denomination or organization. A plan should contain objectives which are statements of goals you hope to accomplish. These statements should:


-Be written.


-Relate to evangelism.


-Be clearly stated.


-Be balanced between faith and reality: If they are unrealistic, they cannot be achieved.


-Be definite: Plans that are too vague are difficult to implement. Your plan must include statements of who is to do what by when and how it is to be done.


-Be measurable: You must be able to evaluate if you have fulfilled the plan.


-Be organized by priority: Some parts of the plan must be done before other parts can be accomplished. Some objectives are more important than others.


IMPLEMENT THE PLAN FOR EVANGELISM:


Planning alone will not accomplish the work of evangelism. You must implement the plan. To implement the plan means that you put it into action. Implementing a plan includes:


-Selecting people to accomplish the plan.

-Communicating the plan to them.

-Delegating responsibility for various parts of the plan.

-Training people to do the tasks.

-Organizing people, resources, events, etc.

-Scheduling events.

-Budgeting.

-Decision making.

-Reviewing progress.

-Evaluating the results.


EVALUATE THE PLAN FOR EVANGELISM:


When you evaluate something you examine it carefully and consider its value. Evaluation is the process of examining plans to determine their value in achieving the purpose of evangelism. Objectives state what you plan to do. Evaluation determines if you accomplished those objectives. Even God evaluated His work in Genesis l. He examined all He had created and declared, "It is good." Evaluation may reveal that you need to revise the objectives, make a change in people working on the objective, change the completion date, change the methods, or readjust the budget. When you have completed a plan, evaluate it to answer these questions:


-Did you reach the goal?

-Where did you fail? Why and how?

-Where did you succeed? Why and how?

-What could you have done differently? Different methods? Different people? Different plan?

-Were resources of people, material, and finances wisely used.

-Could you use this same plan again?

-What can you learn from this that will help you in making new plans?


The model of evangelism in this lesson provides a continuing cycle. After evaluation, repeat the process again with new evangelism plans.


SELF-TEST


1. Write the Key Verse from memory.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


2. Describe the benefits of planning.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


3. Explain why planning is Biblical.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________





(Answers to tests are provided at the conclusion of the final chapter in this manual.)


FOR FURTHER STUDY


1. For further study about planning, obtain the Harvestime International Institute course, "Management By Objectives."


2. Use the model given in this chapter to make a plan for evangelism for your community.


3. Effective planning for evangelism involves many different kinds of meetings to plan, organize, solve problems, and evaluate. There is no way we can discuss every type of meeting you may need to conduct, but here are some general guidelines for any type of a planning or business meeting:


(1) Have a specific purpose for the meeting: Why is it necessary to meet? What is your purpose? What do you need to accomplish?

(2) Make an agenda for the meeting: List the items you will discuss in order of importance. Always include time for prayer to seek God's guidance.

(3) Make a list of everything you need to have at the meeting: This might include pencils, paper, reports, displays, samples, etc. Assemble all items prior to the meeting.

(4) Set a date, time, and place for the meeting.

(5) Notify the people you want to attend the meeting: Give them the date, time, place, and purpose of the meeting. Let each person know if they are to bring anything, for example, a presentation, report, progress summary, etc.

(6) Start and conclude the meeting on time.

(7) Have a chairman assigned to lead the meeting.

(8) Have a method for speaking: Will people raise their hands and be called on by the leader? Will there be open discussion?

(9) Have a method for making decisions: Will you pray until you get a consensus of all? Will the pastor or other spiritual leader make the decision after hearing from all concerned parties?

(10) Stick to the agenda: Do not get distracted by other discussions.

(11) Take notes on decisions made at the meeting, especially on items of who is to do what by when. After the meeting, rewrite these notes in organized form and give a copy to each person who attended the meeting. This will help them remember the tasks they are to accomplish.













CHAPTER FIFTEEN


NETWORKING FOR EVANGELISM


OBJECTIVES:


Upon completion of this chapter you will be able to:


-Write the Key Verses from memory.

-Define "networking."

-Explain how the church is a network.

-Discuss the strengths of networking.

-Discuss the importance of spiritual gifts and networking.

-Explain the unity that is to result from networking.

-Explain the practical application of networking.


KEY VERSES:

 

. . . that ye be like minded having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind.

 

Let nothing be done through strife or vain glory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves.

 

Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others. (Philippians 2:2-4)


INTRODUCTION


You have already learned much about evangelism in this course, and perhaps the magnitude of the task is somewhat overwhelming to you. Truly it is a "great" commission!


But you are not alone in facing this challenge. You are part of a great host of laborers in the Lord's harvest fields. In this lesson you will learn the importance of networking with others for evangelism.


NETWORKING


A network is the joining together of many segments to make a whole. Simply stated, a network consists of people talking to each other, sharing ideas, information, and resources to achieve a common goal. A network can be compared to a knotted fish net with a multitude of cells of varying sizes, each linked to all others directly or indirectly. The human body itself is a network of nerves, muscle, and blood. The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are a divine network of three joined together.


When we network for evangelism, we talk with other believers, churches, and Christian organizations to share ideas, information, and resources to achieve the common goal of reaching the world with the Gospel. No denomination, church fellowship, or mission agency should think of itself alone as the chosen instrument of the Lord to evangelize the world. Networks in horizontal relationships with others are the plan of God as illustrated in the structure of the Church.


THE CHURCH IS A NETWORK


The Church is an example of networking. Read I Corinthians 12:4-31. In this passage the Church is pictured as a united body of many parts with gifted believers functioning together in ministry and mission. Just as a natural body, every member of this spiritual Body has a purpose. It is a cooperative, coordinated function with the rest of the Body. The controlling power of the network of the Church is the authority of God's Word and the headship of the Lord Jesus Christ.


THE STRENGTH OF NETWORKING


People have used different examples to illustrate working relationships with others. Some people have used the example of a chain linked together:





                                   ○-○-○-○-○-○-○-○-○-○-○-○-○


Links Of A Chain










If you work together as links in a chain, the weakest link affects your chain. The weak link can cause the chain to break, and communication between the others is broken.






Some people have organized for a task based on a pyramid structure, with leaders at the top, workers at the bottom:



Leaders


o

ooo

ooooo

ooooooooo

ooooooooooo


Workers
















This type of organization has similar problems as the chain structure. If leadership fails at the top or middle levels, or if people fail at the bottom, functioning is hindered:




Leaders


o

ooo


Structure broken- -failure- - - - - - - -


ooooo

ooooooooo

ooooooooooo


Workers


















For years, this is the way we organized people to do the work of the ministry. But this structure results in competition rather than cooperation. People step on others to get to the top. Believers should organize for the work of the ministry in the pattern of networking. Networking does not have the problems of the chain link or pyramid organizations.

Here is a diagram of a networking structure:


           •➞•➞ •

           ↕ ➶ ➘ ↕

           • ➞ ➞•












Even if a portion of the network fails, the surrounding network continues to function. The network functions similar to a natural body to which the Church is compared. If your thumb is broken, your other fingers or your other hand come to its aid to help it accomplish necessary tasks.


The same is true in the Body of Christ. When you network with others for evangelism, they provide strength where you have weakness. You provide strength where they have weakness. People do not compete with one another, for in networking there is no "top" to get to.


In networking, we combine resources for the purpose of evangelism. None of us has all the spiritual gifts. Alone, we have a limited range of abilities. We also have limited time, equipment, materials, and finances. But together, we have powerful resources to reap the spiritual harvest.


Another strength of the network is that it is always expanding as believers reach out to build relationships with those outside of the Body of Christ and bring them into the network. Thus, the network is ever increasing in size.


SPIRITUAL GIFTS AND NETWORKING


Ephesians 4:11-16 reveals that God has set special leadership gifts in the Church to equip or prepare the other members for the work of the ministry. These special leadership gifts are those of apostle, prophet, evangelist, pastor, and teacher.


The task of these leaders is to prepare people for the work of the ministry by helping them discover and use their own spiritual gifts. In the New International Version of the Bible, the word "prepare" comes from a Greek word that means setting a broken bone or putting a joint back in place. It implies bringing separated parts together so the body can function normally. Networking does not eliminate God-given leadership. But instead of dividing the Body of Christ, it is the responsibility of Christian leadership to bring different groups of people together to accomplish the common goal which is the work of the ministry.


NETWORKING IS UNITY


In the original languages of the Bible, unity refers to "oneness and unanimity" in Greek and "joining together" in Hebrew. Unity is a very powerful force. God destroyed the work at Babel because He knew the people were united in purpose and nothing would be impossible for them (Genesis 11).


The most graphic illustration of unity is that of the Godhead. Jesus prayed that believers might be one, even as the Father was in Him and He in the Father:

 

That they all may be one; as thou Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us, that the world may believe that thou has sent me.

            (John 17:21)


The result of unity is evangelistic impact: "So that the world may believe." Believers networking in unity are an answer to the prayer of the Lord for the purpose of evangelism.


The focus of our unity cannot be doctrinal, because of the various interpretations of doctrine by different denominations. It cannot be organizational because of the many Christian organizations. The focus must be unity of spirit enabled by the power of the Holy Spirit.


The purpose of networking is not to form a single world church under a human authority, but it is unity within diversity that seeks to work together to accomplish God's purpose:

 

Having made known unto us the mystery of His will, according to His good pleasure which He hath purposed in Himself;

 

That in the dispensation of the fullness of times, He might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in Heaven, and which are on earth; even in Him. (Ephesians 1:9-10)


Despite doctrinal differences, all true believers have positional unity in Christ. We are all part of His Body. Because of this, We should seek functional unity in ministry:

 

. . . that ye be like minded having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind.

 

Let nothing be done through strife or vain glory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves.

 

Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others. (Philippians 2:2-4)

 

It is by our loving unity that the world knows we are Christians:

 

By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another. (John 13:35)


THE PRACTICAL APPLICATION OF NETWORKING


The practical application of networking for evangelism means that we set aside our own activities to cooperate with other believers to spread the Gospel. We share our ideas and research with others. We pray together and work together towards a common goal. We share resources of people, spiritual gifts, equipment, and finances--all for the purpose of evangelism.


A NEW NETWORK


The Bible records two separate incidents involving the use of a net in the natural world which illustrate a great spiritual truth. The first event occurred at the beginning of Christ's earthly ministry and is recorded in Luke 5. The disciples had been fishing all night and caught nothing. Jesus told them:

 

Launch out into the deep and let down your nets for a draught.

            (Luke 5:4)


Peter said:

 

Master, we have toiled all the night and have taken nothing; nevertheless at thy word I will let down the net. (Luke 5:5)


When they let down the net they caught so many fish that it broke and they had to call their partners in another boat to come help them. The catch was so great that it filled both boats and they began to sink. Peter was amazed at this but Jesus told him:

 

Fear not, from henceforth thou shalt catch men. (Luke 5:15).


The catch Peter was experiencing in the natural world was nothing compared to the great harvest he would reap in the spiritual world as he became a fisher of men. A similar incident is recorded at the end of Christ's ministry in John 21. The disciples fished all night and caught nothing. At Christ's command they cast in the net and, once again, it was filled with fish. But this time was different than the first. The net did not break:

 

Simon Peter went up and drew the net to land full of great fishes, an hundred an fifty and three; and for all there were so many, yet was not the net broken. (John 21:11)


These two events actually happened in the natural world, but they were parallels of a great spiritual truth. The first time the net broke, but the second time it did not. What made the difference?


The first net was an example of the efforts of man. Peter was a fisherman by trade. He knew the natural methods and the traditions of fishermen. Through the broken net Jesus showed him that the efforts of man alone could not fulfill the vision and work of God. When Peter realized the great work to which God was calling him, he cried out:

 

Depart from me; for I am a sinful man, O Lord. (Luke 5:8).


Peter would become a fisher of men. The old network could not accommodate the great spiritual harvest he would reap. Peter would have to abandon the traditions of man. He must cross the line of separation between Jew and Gentile. The old network must be broken and he must become part of a new network.


Between the first and the second fishing trips, a new network was created. These natural fishing incidents were parallels of what happened in the spirit world. God was raising up a new network. It would break down the division between Jews and Gentiles, rich and poor, slave and free. It would expand to include Paul, Barnabas, Silas, Titus and a host of other people, and it would stretch from Jerusalem, to Judea and Samaria, to reach the uttermost parts of the world.


The challenge of the Great Commission cannot be accomplished with anything less than a new "net" in the spirit world. God said that in the last days He would pour out His Spirit upon all flesh. The Old Testament prophets predicted that in the final days of spiritual harvest the cycle would be so great that the plowman would overtake the reaper.


This great spiritual harvest cannot be reaped by one man, one organization, or one denomination alone. This is why God said in these final days He would pour out His Spirit on all flesh. Responsible teamwork must be applied to our evangelistic efforts if we are to reach the harvest in time. The New Testament apostolic example required a team of dedicated people laboring effectively toward the single goal of evangelism. How much more this is needed as the shadows of night begin to fall across the spiritual fields of the nations of this world.


Remember how John and his brother were mending their nets when Jesus called them? They were attempting to repair something that was worn out. Jesus called them to leave their worn out nets and exchange them for a great spiritual net. They were called to become fishers of men. By responding, they became part of the new network for evangelism.


Now the question is this: Will you remain behind trying to mend the old net of denominational and doctrinal differences, or will you hear the call of Christ? Will you lay aside the old network of competition for the new network of cooperation in order that the world may be reached with the Gospel?


SELF-TEST


1. Write the Key Verses from memory.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


2. Define "networking.”


_______________________________________________________________________________


3. Explain how the church is a network.


_______________________________________________________________________________


4. Discuss the strengths of networking.


_______________________________________________________________________________


5. Discuss the importance of spiritual gifts and networking.


_______________________________________________________________________________


6. Explain the unity that results from networking.


_______________________________________________________________________________


7. Explain the practical application of networking.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________









(Answers to tests are provided at the conclusion of the final chapter in this manual.)


FOR FURTHER STUDY


1. Jesus had a network for evangelism. He used a team of the 12 disciples and then appointed 72 others and sent them out, two by two, to every town and place where He was to go (Luke 10:1). When one of the disciples found someone who was not part of their "group" ministering healing and deliverance, he asked Jesus if he should be stopped. Jesus illustrated "networking" with the answer He gave. Read about it in Mark 9:38-40.


2. Paul's ministry began as the result of networking. The Holy Spirit spoke to the church at Antioch and said, "Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them." He did not call an individual, but a team (Acts 13:1-3). Paul and Barnabas were the first in this new network. Others who later became part of Paul's network for evangelism included:


            -John Mark                                                     Acts 13:5

            -Silas                                                              Acts 15:22

            -Timothy                                                         Acts 16:1

            -Luke                                                              Acts 16:10

            -Priscilla and Aquila                                       Acts 18:18

            -Erastus                                                           Acts 19:22

            -Sopater                                                          Acts 20:4

            -Aristarchus and Secundus                             Acts 20:4

            -Gaius                                                                         Acts 20:4

            -Trophimus                                                     Acts 21:27-29

            -Tychicus                                                        Ephesians 6:21

            -Titus                                                              Galatians 2:1

            -Demas                                                           II Timothy 4:10

            -Epaphroditus                                     Philippians 2:25

            -Tertius                                                           Romans 16:22


3. Since networking or Body ministry is so clearly a Scriptural concept, why do people resist it? The following are common reasons why we do not cooperate. These must be overcome if we are to successfully network with others:


-We fear loss of control: We tend to think we will be surrendering control of our organization or church to others.


-We focus on differences instead of common purpose and position: We emphasize how we differ from others rather than the common factor that we are one in Christ and have a common goal of evangelism.


-We fear loss of support: We are afraid if we cooperate with other agencies, some of the funds we need for ministry will go to them instead of us.


-We fear loss of personnel: Leaders are sometimes afraid members of their congregation or organization will join some other group.


-We fear compromise: Because we have minor doctrinal differences, we fear it is compromise to cooperate with others. We should never compromise on moral issues, with cults, or false doctrine, but minor doctrinal differences should not be allowed to hinder networking for evangelism.


-Our sinful nature thrives on independence: This is why the temptation of Eve succeeded. She wanted to become independent of God. Independence is a characteristic of godless self.




































INTRODUCTION TO PART TWO


"As You Go". . .



In the New Testament Gospels, Jesus never commissioned anyone to preach the Gospel without also commanding them to minister healing and deliverance. He told them "As you go. . . heal the sick, cast out demons. . . "


As the multitudes came for healing and deliverance, the spiritual harvest began to multiply so rapidly that new laborers were required. It was not long until 70 more disciples were needed and were also sent out to preach, teach, heal, and deliver.


It was this demonstration of power as they went that resulted in the rapid spread of the Gospel throughout the world. For this reason, this part of "Leaven-Like Evangelism" focuses on the healing and deliverance ministry that is to accompany the preaching and teaching of the Gospel.


Chapter Sixteen provides an introduction to the healing and deliverance ministry. Chapter Seventeen discusses variables that affect healing. Chapter Eighteen focuses on the ministry of healing and Chapter Nineteen concerns the ministry of deliverance.

















CHAPTER SIXTEEN


AN INTRODUCTION TO HEALING AND DELIVERANCE



OBJECTIVES:


Upon completion of this chapter you will be able to:


-Write the Key Verses from memory.

-Explain some of the current attitudes towards healing.

-Identify five categories of sickness.

-Define "divine healing."

-Identify the source of sickness.

-Identify reasons for sickness.

-Explain two end results of sickness.

-Discuss the purposes of divine healing.


KEY VERSES:

 

And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues:

 

They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.

            (Luke 16:17-18)


INTRODUCTION


This chapter introduces the ministry of healing and deliverance which is to be preached and demonstrated as part of the Gospel of the Kingdom of God. The words "healing" and "deliverance" are used interchangeably in these lessons. Both refer to the concept of wholeness of body, soul, and spirit which is taught in Scriptures.


In this lesson you will study current attitudes towards healing and deliverance and learn why proper teaching on these subjects is necessary. You will also learn about the source and reasons for sickness, gifts of healing, and purposes for healing.


CURRENT ATTITUDES TOWARDS HEALING


First, it is helpful to understand some of the current attitudes you will face as you begin to minister in this area. In regards to healing and deliverance, many believers have. . .


IGNORED IT:


Some ignore it because of Biblical warnings against false miracles (Mark 13:22-23). They regard this as a warning about all miracles. Some believe healing in theory, but ignore it in practice. Others ignore it because they cannot answer all the questions associated with sickness and suffering.


Some ignore healing because of fear of failure. We seem to have a double standard. We pray confidently for finances, wisdom, etc., but we are fearful to pray for healing. Others do not realize how rationalism and materialism have affected them. Many must "see to believe" and are consumed with the natural, materialistic world rather than the supernatural.


DENIED IT:


Some people deny healing and deliverance are for today because they have no theology, model, practice, or experience with it. The New Testament Gospels contain 26 accounts of physical healing. The book of Acts contains five. Physical healing is mentioned in I Corinthians 12:8-11 and 28-30. James 5:13-16 gives specific instructions on how to pray for the sick.


There is nothing in the Epistles that modifies the Gospel's teaching on healing. Praying for the sick was taken for granted at the time the Epistles were written, and there is no hint that divine healing was controversial in the early church.


COMPLICATED IT:


Many people complicate healing and deliverance with traditions of man contrary to the Word of God. You will learn about some of these traditions in the next lesson.


Others complicate it with experience because in the past they prayed for healing and did not receive it. But we must base our beliefs on the Word of God, not on experience (except where experience supports the Word). Bad role models of healing complicate this issue for some people as they have observed personality cults, people healing for money, deception, and undue focus on physical healing instead of wholeness.


Healing and deliverance are also complicated by imbalance. Any truth, no matter how valid, emphasized to the exclusion of other truths is practical error. For example, an over emphasis on the role of faith in healing has left sick people feeling defeated if they do not immediately receive.


DELAYED IT:


Some people delay ministering healing and deliverance because they do not have the answers to everything. They do not understand why some are healed and others are not. (You will study more about this in the next lesson.)


It is not necessary to understand everything about healing in order to minister or receive it anymore than you understood everything about salvation when you were saved and began to witness to others.


Some answers will come as you minister and experience God's healing power. Other questions will never be answered. If you knew all the "why" and "how" about everything, then you would not need God. The Bible says "we know in part." Healing concerns sickness and suffering and there will always be mysteries because the mystery of iniquity is at work (II Thessalonians 2:7).


THE NEED FOR PROPER TEACHING


A review of the current attitudes towards healing and deliverance illustrate why we need proper teaching on this subject. Many are being destroyed physically and spiritually because they do not have knowledge of what God's Word teaches regarding healing:

 

My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge. (Hosea 4:6)


Healing (wholeness) is part of the Gospel of the Kingdom which we are commissioned to spread (Luke 16:15-18). Jesus called us to preach, teach, heal, and deliver. Healing and deliverance should not be left out, but neither should it be emphasized to the exclusion of the other two.


The Bible reveals that our churches are to be healing centers (Luke 14:16-24). We are to see people healed rather than turned away:

 

And make straight paths for your feet, lest that which is lame be turned out of the way; but let it rather be healed. (Hebrews 12:13)


As believers, it is sin if we do not share the good news of healing and deliverance with a lost and dying world. The Bible says:

 

Therefore, to him that knoweth to do good (to know about healing and that we are commissioned to minister it) and doeth it not, to him it is sin.

            (James 4:17)


God gives some stern warnings to leaders who ignore healing:

 

The diseased have ye not strengthened, neither have ye healed that which was sick, neither have ye bound up that which was broken, neither have ye brought again that which was driven away, neither have ye sought that which was lost; but with force and with cruelty have ye ruled them. . .

 

I will seek that which was lost, and bring again that which was driven away, and will bind up that which was broken, and will strengthen that which was sick. . . (Ezekiel 34:4,16)


STARTING WITH THE PROPER ATTITUDE


As you approach the subject of healing and deliverance, you need to do so with a proper attitude. You must disregard past experiences and the traditions you have been taught. You must be teachable. One of the marks of wisdom from above is that it is open to reason (James 3:17). You are in danger spiritually when you stop being teachable.


Remember that the sin of presumption is putting God in your little mold. Job's friends sinned presumptuously in this way. Universal application of individual experience is wrong. Start this study as though you have never heard the traditional teachings of man on it. Accept what God's Word says: If it says you are healed, believe it. If it says to lay hands on the sick, do it. What it says God will do, expect Him to do it.


Do not seek formulas and methods to receive or minister healing. The Bible gives no specific formulas, although various principles are revealed and we will deal with these. Instead of seeking formulas, understand that the Healer is within you. Seek to increase your knowledge of and intimate relationship with the Healer Himself.


Jesus and the Holy Spirit are resident within. Healing is not something you seek from the outside, but you learn to release it from the inside. You are seeking only to understand principles that release that power within.


Recognize that if you truly follow the example of the healing ministry of Jesus that you will:


l. Be a servant instead of a "lord": Mark 10:44


2. Grow weary, not rich: Mark 6:31; John 4:6; Acts 3:6


3. Encounter unbelief of others: Mark 13:58


4. Experience persecution from religious leaders: (Some of them are like the Pharisees. . . more concerned with law and tradition than life): Luke 6:6-9


5. Experience persecution from those closest to you: Mark 6:4 and Matthew 13:58


6. Avoid publicity instead of seeking it: Mark 8:26; 17:36; Matthew 8:4


7. Reject personal gain or material benefits from God's power: Acts 8:18-24


8. Reject personal glory: Acts 14:8-18


DIVINE HEALING


There are many types of healing in the world today:

 

-Psychic Healing: This is a term used to describe mind over matter, spiritistic, witchcraft, shamanism, and occult healings.

 

-Supernatural Healing: There are sources of supernatural healings which are not of God, so we will not use this term in our study. Satan can perform supernatural works (Exodus 7:8-13).

 

-Medical Healing: This type of healing is aided by doctors, nurses, hospitals, and medicines. As we will learn, legitimate medical healing is not in conflict with God's Word, but is an extension of His goodness.

 

-Natural Healing: Healing that occurs through natural body processes is actually God in action. Natural body processes display His nature and His great handiwork in the human body. Natural healing also includes the use of natural methods such as proper diet, vitamins, rest, etc.

 

(Note: Medical and natural healings are in a sense divine, because in reality it is God that causes the healing.)

 

-Faith Healing: This term is often used to mean healing by God. We will not use it, however, because it tends to focus attention on the faith of either the one ministering or the recipient of the ministry.

 

-Divine Healing: The Word "divine" focuses attention on God, not the responses of faith by man. It also distinguishes it from occult practices of psychic and supernatural healing.


In this study we will use the term divine healing. "Divine" pertains to the one true God and His nature, as revealed in His Word, the Holy Bible. "Healing" means to cure or make whole. Healing can include relief from spiritual, physical, emotional, mental, and demonic conditions. Healing is not immunity from sickness. Our bodies are in the "process of decay" and open to Satanic attacks as long as we are in this world.


Divine healing is when the one true God reveals His nature, fulfills His promises, and acts upon His provision in the atonement of Christ by curing a person and making him whole in body, soul (mind, will, and emotions), and spirit.


Divine healing can be both instantaneous (miraculous) or gradual (a process). Although miraculous, instantaneous healings more fully demonstrate the divine presence and power of God, divine healing which occurs as a process is no less a healing than those which are instantaneous. (See Mark 8:22-25.)


SICKNESS AND DISEASE


When we speak of sickness or disease we mean any condition which is out of proper divine order as it was created by God. There are five categories of sickness:


SPIRITUAL SICKNESS:


Spiritual sickness is sin. If it is not dealt with, it is terminal spiritually. Healing for spiritual sickness is forgiveness of sin through Jesus Christ. It is the greatest healing of all, as medical science and natural healing processes can do nothing for this condition.


PHYSICAL SICKNESS:


Physical sickness may result from organic disorders. They are problems that can be observed and detected by physicians. The actual structure or tissue of the body is damaged in some way. Physical sickness also results from functional disorders. This is illness resulting from a malfunction of an organ or part of the body. They include a variety of problems in which a problem in one part disturbs the whole organism. Most common are heart diseases, high blood pressure, diabetes, peptic ulcers, and allergies. Functional illnesses which continue unchecked can result in organic illness. Because of the integrated nature of man, illness in one part affects the whole.


EMOTIONAL SICKNESS:


Emotional illness is caused by harmful emotions such as anger, hatred, bitterness, etc. God has to touch the inner emotions to heal this. Some call this "inner healing", although the term has sometimes been abused and been expanded to include experiences the Bible does not teach.


MENTAL SICKNESS:


Mental sickness is a mental condition occurring from retardation, illness, breakdowns, birth defects, and psychological conditions not caused directly by demonic presence.


DEMONIC CONDITIONS:


Demonically caused conditions include possession, oppression, and demonically caused mental and physical conditions. Demonic conditions require a special type of healing which is called deliverance. Deliverance and healing are related, but Scripture differentiates between them:

 

Then He called His twelve disciples together and gave them power and authority over all devils and to cure diseases.

 

And He sent them to preach the Kingdom of God, and to heal the sick.

            (Luke 9:1-2)



THE SOURCE OF SICKNESS


There is one original source of sickness, although there are varied reasons why a person gets sick. Paul verified this when he said "for this cause many are sick" (I Corinthians 11:30). Satan is the source of all evil in the world. Sickness and death entered the world through man’s sin. (Study Genesis l-3 and James 1:17.) Satan kills, steals, and destroys. Jesus is the source of abundant life:

 

The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.

            (John 10:10)


Jesus said He came to save men, not to destroy them. To "save" includes healing as well as salvation.


Disease and sickness are part of the curse, but Galatians 3:13 declares: "Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law." The body is for the Lord. It is not for ourselves, disease, or sickness. Sickness destroys the body like sin destroys the spirit. Disease steals health, happiness, money, time, effort, thought, and strength. It kills and destroys. Even accidents destroy. It is obvious in all these cases that "some enemy hath done this" (Matthew 13:12).


Because sickness has its source in Satan, you should resist it just as you do temptation and sin. When you resist temptation and sin you are fighting spiritual warfare. When you resist sickness you are also fighting spiritual warfare.


Satan provides the destructive elements of sickness. Although every disease is not a direct attack of demonic spirits, the elements of sickness exist in the world because of Satan. For example, you might catch cold when you go barefoot in freezing weather. This is not a direct attack of demonic spirits, but the elements of sickness which result in your cold exist in the world because of Satan.


Every disease comes from a germ of life. Just as your spirit gives life to the body, Satan gives life to germs. In the natural world, God takes a living cell and multiplies it to bring forth life. (A new child is born.)


Satan counterfeits good with bad. He takes a living cell (virus, cancer, etc.) and multiplies it to bring forth death. (This is especially true in the physical condition of cancer. It is cells in rebellion against the creator. That is why often when the flesh is cut to remove the cancer, the rebellion just moves to another part of the body.)


When the spirit of infirmity is cast out, disease in your body dies. As long as that germ of life exists in the body, the disease lives and continues its destructive work. Because the source of sickness is Satanic, his power must be bound and cast out.


If you understand how God views sickness you will never doubt its source:

 

-God calls sickness captivity (Job 42:10). Jesus came to preach deliverance to the captives (Luke 4:18).

 

-Jesus called sickness bondage (Luke 13:16). He came to set people free with the truth (John 8:32).

 

-Jesus viewed sickness as oppression and healed those who were oppressed (Acts 10:38).

 

-The Bible calls sickness and death enemies (I Corinthians 15:26).

 

-Sickness is viewed as loathsome (Psalms 38:7).

 

-Sickness is called evil (Psalms 41:8).


THE REASONS FOR SICKNESS


There is one source of sickness, whether spiritual or physical, and that source is Satan. But the reasons sickness comes upon us are varied:


VIOLATION OF SPIRITUAL LAWS:


When man sinned, death began to work its corruption in the body:

 

Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned. (Romans 5:13)

 

For the wages of sin is death. (Romans 6:23)


A person's sickness is not necessarily caused by their own individual sin, however. Jesus made this clear in the example of the man blind since birth (John 9:1-3). If God punished sin with sickness, every sinner and sinning Christian in the world would be sick. It is true that sin and sickness have a connection, but we must be careful in the way this is applied individually. It can be used as a convenient way to neglect the sick and rationalize our own powerlessness.


One of the worst misapplications of Scripture is that sickness is because of a person's individual sin or lack of faith (which is sin).


If you break God's law, you will suffer. This is suffering for your own sinful acts. For the sinner, this is judgment. For the believer, it is chastisement. For example, a believer who engages in infidelity can get a terrible disease (like AIDS) just like an unbeliever can. Even if you keep God's law, you may still suffer because you are living in a world filled with sin. The righteous sometimes suffer because of the presence of sin in the world. An example of suffering for your own sin is someone who gets AIDS through their own sinful immorality. An example of suffering because of the presence of sin in the world is someone who gets AIDS through a blood transfusion.


Several Bible references confirm that sickness can be related to individual sin (see Mark 2:1-12; John 5:1-11,14; James 5:14-16; Psalms 38:3,7). Romans 6:19 confirms that infirmities come through uncleanness (sin). When we violate spiritual laws, we walk under the curse described in Deuteronomy 28. Sickness can also be related to corporate sin (see Acts 5:1-11; I Corinthians 11:27-32).


Healing can be lost by returning to sin:

 

Afterward, Jesus findeth him in the temple, and said unto him, Behold, thou art made whole: sin no more, lest a worse thing come upon thee. (John 5:14)


In this world, there will always be sickness just as there will always be sin. But we can fight sickness just as we fight sin through spiritual warfare.


SATANIC ATTACKS:


Sickness that comes through sin has its original source in Satan of course, but sometimes it comes through a direct attack of Satan and not because of individual or corporate sin. Job is one of the best examples of this. (See Job 1 and 2.)


Sin is Satan's attack on the spiritual man. Sickness is his attack on the natural man. In the New Testament, as well as modern times, the righteous suffer the majority of Satanic attacks because we have been thrust into a war with Satan, and in any war there are casualties.

    

Satan attacks your body just as he does your mind. Your mind, body, and the old man of the flesh (lust of the eye, lust of the flesh, and the pride of life), are the ways he attacks. Although he attacks you physically as he does spiritually, he has no more right to dwell in your physical body than he does in your soul or spirit.


The operation of Satan's forces in the believer's body can be compared to guerrilla warfare. They actually have no legal right at all in the territory but seek to operate there anyhow.


DESTRUCTION OF THE FLESH THAT THE SPIRIT BE SAVED:


God permits some to be turned to Satan for destruction of the flesh for disciplinary reasons. God does not put the sickness on them, but He permits it. You can read about this process in I Corinthians 5:1-7.


In "destruction of the flesh," the Church turns a sinful man to Satan for destruction of the flesh that the spirit might be saved. The Bible reveals:


How it is to be done:


l. In unity.

2. In the spirit and power of the Lord.

3. In the name of the Lord.


Why it is to be done:


1. Fornication.

2. Behavior worse than that of the world (Gentiles).

3. Pride.

4. Lack of repentance.

5. Evil in the midst of the people of God.


Its purpose:


1. Individual: Destruction of the flesh in order that the spirit may be saved.

2. Corporate: Purge out the evil before others are affected.


VIOLATION OF THE NATURAL LAWS OF GOD:


Some sickness comes upon us because we violate natural laws of God. For examples:


-Improper diet (overweight, underweight).


-Too much labor, feverish activity.


-Improper rest.


-Lack of self control which result in harmful emotions such as anger, bitterness, etc.


-Lack of positive relationships with others (bitterness, unforgiveness etc.)


-Exercise (too much or too little).


-Abuse of drugs and alcohol: Toxic chemical substances taken into the body.


-Violating natural laws such as the law of gravity, etc. (If you jump off a building, you may get hurt!)


-Deliberately placing yourself in jeopardy through dangerous activities and refusing to use safety devices (i.e., such as seat belts in a car, goggles in a workshop, a helmet at a construction site, etc.)


NOT PROPERLY DISCERNING THE BODY OF CHRIST:


Paul said many were weak and sick because they did not properly discern the Body of Christ and took Communion unworthily. (You will learn what this means in the next lesson.)


THE END RESULT OF SICKNESS


The end result of a sickness will either be. . .


FOR THE GLORY OF GOD:


A person is healed and God receives glory through their testimony, life, and ministry. Jesus said of the blind man:

 

. . . Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents: But that the works of God should be made manifest in Him. (John 9:3)


Glory goes to God for divine healing, of course, but glory should also go to God for what is called natural healing of the body through its own processes. God created the body and displays His nature and creative power through natural bodily processes.


Glory should also go to God for healing assisted by medical means. The Bible says every good gift comes from God, and this includes medicines, vitamins, and other substances that benefit us physically. Many medicines come from natural substances in plants and elements that were created by God in the first place. The problem arises when people give praise to medicines and doctors instead of realizing God is the source of all healing:

 

. . . They knew not that I healed them. (Hosea 11:3)



Sometimes a healing is delayed and a person is healed later or gradually. Consider these examples:


            -Zechariah was not healed until the birth of John: Luke 1:20


            -Hannah could not bear a child until God's timing: I Samuel 1:5-19

 

-Abraham and Sarah could not bear a child, despite Abraham's faith, until God's timing: Hebrews 11:11


A SICKNESS UNTO DEATH:


In John 11:4 Jesus said the sickness of Lazarus was not one unto death. This means there is a sickness unto death. There are two types of death mentioned in the Bible. Some who are turned over to the destruction of the flesh die a premature death so that the spirit might be saved.


Every man has an appointed time to die (Ecclesiastes 3:2; Hebrews 9:2). Even Elisha, the great prophet of God who did many miracles of healing, became sick with "the sickness whereof he would die" (II Kings 13:14). It is possible to just stop breathing and not be ill:

 

You take away their breath, they die, and return to the dust.

            (Psalms 104:29)


For the believer, the effects of old age can go either way. As an old man Moses had no effects of age. Joshua was "old and well stricken in age." God preserved one supernaturally, while the other experienced the results of natural aging. Their spirituality had nothing to do with it. God sustains us whether our bodies follow the natural processes of age and death by disease or are supernaturally preserved. The goal of healing is not immortality. Divine healing does not achieve this anymore than medicine does. Even those raised from the dead by Jesus eventually died.


When a believer dies, it is the ultimate healing within the parameters of eternity. We make the mistake of living bound by time instead of eternity. As a believer, we are already living eternal life whether we live it on this or the other side of death.


THE GIFTS OF HEALING


The gifts of the Holy Spirit are given to the Body for the edification of the Body. Thus, gifts of healing are available to all and healing is available for all. An individual does not operate healing gifts himself. They are operated through him by the Holy Spirit. The Bible says we are to seek the best gifts:

 

Covet earnestly the best gifts. (I Corinthians 12:31)


When you pray for the gifts of healing, you are asking God to further develop that which is already in you, as all believers have the potential and authority to lay hands on the sick for healing. Jesus increased the resources He was given (Luke 5:22) and Timothy was told to stir up the gift within him (II Timothy 1:3).


There are a variety of healing gifts because the word "gifts" is plural. There are a variety of diseases and different gifts (or means) of healing to cure them. If God wanted to heal in only one way, He would not have used so many different ways in the Bible.


Think of the various ways God works to bring a person to salvation. Can He not work in various ways to bring healing? Methods or gifts in themselves do not heal any more than they save. They are channels through which God's power is manifested. In the Bible we find healing gifts by:


            1. Laying on of hands: The minister touching the sick.


            2. People touching the minister.


            3. Speaking the Word from a distance.


            4. Speaking the Word in the presence of the sick.


            5. Dealing with a person directly.


            6. Healing because of intercession by another.


            7. Praying.


            8. Actions of faith: Healing which occurred from an act of faith taken by the sick

               person.


            9. Various types of faith at work:


                 a. Faith of one who ministers.

                 b. Faith of one who seeks healing.

                 c. Faith of friends.

                 d. Faith of relatives.


            10. Different "agents" used. Nothing was sacred about         them, but they were a point of

                contact:

  

                 a. Spit.

                 b. Mud.

                 c. Prayer clothes.

                 d. Poultice of figs.

                 e. Hem of garment of minister.

                 f. Shadows of minister.

                 g. Oil.

                 h. Fingers in ear.

                 i. Water.

                 j. Touch.


            11. Special miracles:

 

God anoints some people with faith for special healings (like the Apostle Paul). For example, God uses some people to minister especially to cancer patients, etc.. This does not mean we should not minister in all areas of healing, for our command is to heal the sick in general.


All believers are commissioned to heal the sick, and although God does move through some in special gifts of healing, all should be involved in the healing ministry. Here are the people the Bible says should be involved in healing:


            -Pastors and shepherds (spiritual leaders): Ezekiel 34

             -Elders/deacons: James 5:14

            -Ordinary believers: James 5:16; Luke 16:15-18

            -Those with the special gifts of healing: I Corinthians 12:9

            -The entire church a healing center: Luke 14:16-24


THE PURPOSES OF HEALING


The most obvious purpose of healing is making the sick well. But healing and deliverance serve purposes other than just making people whole. Healing and deliverance also:


DEMONSTRATES THE CHARACTER OF GOD:

 

The Lord is gracious and full of compassion; slow to anger, and of great mercy.

 

The Lord is good to all; and His tender mercies are over all His works. (Psalms 145:8-9)

 

And Jesus, moved with compassion, put forth His hand and touched him, and saith unto him, I will; be thou clean. (Mark 1:41)

  



GLORIFIES GOD:

 

And great multitudes came unto Him, having with them those that were lame, blind, dumb, maimed, and many others, and cast them down at Jesus' feet; and He healed them:

 

Insomuch that the multitude wondered, when they saw the dumb to speak, the maimed to be whole, the lame to walk, and the blind to see; and they glorified the God of Israel. (Matthew 15:30-31)

 

. . . for all men glorified God for that which was done. (Acts 4:21)


Part of glorifying God involves the proper fear of God. Healing results in such this:

 

And fear came upon every soul: and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles. (Acts 2:43)


CONFIRMS JESUS AS SAVIOR AND MESSIAH:


Read Matthew 8:14-17 in your Bible. The healings recorded here confirmed words of the prophet:

 

. . . Himself took our infirmities and bare our sicknesses. (Matthew 8:17).


In Luke 5:18-26 the healing of a lame man and forgiving his sins confirmed Jesus as Savior as well as healer. Here are some other references where healing and deliverance confirmed Jesus as Savior:

 

If I do not the works of my Father, believe me not. But if I do, though ye believe not me, believe the works: that ye may know, and believe, that the Father is in me, and I in Him. (John 10:37-38)

 

Jesus' disciples saw Him do many other miracles besides the ones told about in this book, but these are recorded so that you will believe that He is the Messiah, the Son of God, and in believing in Him you will have life.

            (John 20:30-31, The Living Bible)


VERIFIES THE MESSENGER AND THE MESSAGE:

 

And the woman said to Elijah, Now by this I know that thou art a man of God, and that the word of the Lord in thy mouth is truth. (I Kings 17:24)

 

Long time therefore abode they speaking boldly in the Lord, which gave testimony unto the word of His grace, and granted signs and wonders to be done by their hands. (Acts 14:3)

 

Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were unlearned and ignorant men, they marveled; and they took knowledge of them that they had been with Jesus. (Acts 4:13)


ENCOURAGES RECEPTIVITY TO THE GOSPEL:

 

And now, through Christ, all the kindness of God has been poured out upon us undeserving sinners; and how he is sending us out around the world to tell all people everywhere the great things God has done from them, so that they, too, will believe and obey Him. (Romans 1:5, The Living Bible)


It is easy to tell people about the Gospel after they have been healed. There are several examples of this in the book of Acts. Healing opened the door for the Gospel to be shared for salvation, infilling of the Holy Ghost, and the church growth. See Acts 2:42-47 and 5:14 for examples.


Although healing encourages receptivity to the Gospel, always remember that it does not replace the preaching of the Gospel of salvation. The Word should be taught along with the demonstration of power through healing and deliverance in order to bring people into right relationship with God. Always remember that it is the Word that creates faith for salvation, healing, and deliverance.


Healing is a powerful tool of evangelism. In the recorded healings in Scripture:


-In 17 instances, healings took place in evangelistic settings:


            Matthew 4:24; 8:16; 9:2-8; 9:32-33

            Mark 1:23-28; 9:14-27; 10:46-52

            Luke 8:42-48; 13:10-13,16; 14:1-4; 17:11-19

            John 4:28-30; 5:1-9, 14; 9:1-7

            Acts 3:1-10; 8:5-8; 14:8-10


-In 16 instances, the healings had an evangelistic result:


            Matthew 9:2-8; 9:32-33; 12:9-13

            Mark 1:23-28; 5:1-13, 18-20; 7:32-37; 9:14-27

            Luke 5:12-14; 13:10-13,16; 17:11-19

            John 4:28-30; 9:1-7

            Acts 3:1-8; 8:5-8; 9:32-35; 14:8-10


-In 21 out of the 26 healings, there was either an evangelistic setting or result.




ESTABLISHES THE KINGDOM OF GOD:

 

And heal the sick that are therein, and say unto them, The Kingdom of God is come nigh unto you. (Luke 10:9)

 

And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the Gospel of the Kingdom, and healing all manner of sickness and all manner of disease among the people. (Matthew 4:23)

 

But if I cast out devils by the Spirit of God, then the Kingdom of God is come unto you. (Matthew 12:28)


As you minister healing, remember that the Kingdom is not yet in its fullness. In the fullness of the Kingdom there will be complete absence of disease and death. The body, as well as the soul, is not redeemed now as it will be in the fullness of the Kingdom.


We are saved from the penalty of sin in the past and can be saved from its power in the present. In the future, we will be saved from sin's presence. The same is true of sickness. Sickness is not a penalty for our past sins. We can be redeemed from its power in the present, but not from its presence until the future.


DEMONSTRATES JUDGMENT ON THE ENEMY:

 

. . . The prince of this world is judged. (John 16:11)


When you lay hands on the sick you are declaring that the prince of this world has been judged and the power of sickness and disease has been destroyed. Remember that it is the power of sickness that is destroyed, not its presence. We will only be redeemed from its presence when we come into the fullness of the Kingdom of God.


RAISES UP SPIRITUAL LEADERS:


Healing has been used to raise up great spiritual leaders. Paul was called to be an apostle of the Gospel at the time of His healing (Acts 9).


RESULTS IN GREAT JOY:


Read Acts 8:5-25. This passage explains the great joy that came to individuals and communities where healing and deliverance had been ministered.


AS YOU BEGIN. . .


A famous ruler named Julius Caesar, having determined to conquer Britain, sailed with his legions from France to England. Then he burned every ship used for crossing the English channel. It was either move forward in victory or die. There could be no retreat.


A ministry of healing and deliverance is for those who burn the bridges of unbelief and fear behind them. You will take either one of two positions towards healing and deliverance. You may be like Gamaliel, a New Testament leader, who stood on the sidelines and urged caution. He suggested to the religious leaders that they wait and see.


Or you will be like Peter, who took the risk of action. He was healing the lame man, incurring the anger of spiritual leaders, and standing against authorities who told him not to preach or heal in the name of Jesus.


Always remember, you are a facilitator of healing, not the healer. You are only a channel through which the Healer within you flows to. . .

 

-People who face crippling malignancies and endure racking pain.

 

-People who are troubled by what life has done to them or are filled with guilt over what they have done with life.

 

-People who are frustrated, hopeless, and ready to give up.

 

-People who have lost loved ones or been hurt and their hearts sob with emotions too painful to contain, but too personal to express.

 

-People bound with chains of sin and demonic oppression.

 

-People facing death.


Ponder this question which Jesus asked: "For whether is easier, to say, `Thy sins be forgiven thee' or to say, `Arise, and walk?'"














SELF-TEST


1. Write the Key Verses from memory.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


2. Explain some of the current attitudes towards healing.


_______________________________________________________________________________


3. Identify five types of sickness.


__________ __________ __________ __________ __________


4. Define "divine healing."


_______________________________________________________________________________


5. Who is the source of sickness?


_______________________________________________________________________________


6. List some of the reasons for sickness.


_______________________________________________________________________________


7. What are the two end results of sickness?


___________________________ _______________________________


8. List some of the purposes of divine healing.


_______________________________________________________________________________


_______________________________________________________________________________


(Answers to tests are provided at the conclusion of the final chapter in this manual.)




FOR FURTHER STUDY


1. Here are some references to continue your study on healing and deliverance. They include both promises and examples of healing and deliverance.


Old Testament References


Genesis 17:18-19: God promised to heal Sara's barrenness.


Genesis 20:17: God healed Abimelech.


Exodus 4:6-7: Moses' leprous hand.


Exodus 15:25-26: God reveals His name as "Jehovah-Rapha" which means, "The Lord Thy Physician". He promised that none of the diseases of Egypt would come upon Israel.


Exodus 23:25: God promised to take away sickness from among His people.


Leviticus 13:1-46: Regulations regarding leprosy.


Leviticus 14:1-32: Regulations regarding leprosy.


Leviticus 15:1-33: Health regulations.


Leviticus 16:29-30: Healing of sins.


Numbers 12:1-15: Leprosy of Miriam and Aaron.


Numbers 16:41-50: A plague affects Israel.


Numbers 21:5-9: Healing from the symbolic serpent of brass.


Deuteronomy 7:15: Obedience to God results in health.


Deuteronomy 28: Sickness results when we do not observe God's law.


Deuteronomy 29:22: The Lord lays sickness on the land.


Deuteronomy 30:20: God is life and length of days.


Deuteronomy 32:39: God wounds and heals.


Deuteronomy 7:15; 28:60: Diseases of Egypt.


Joshua 5:8: Natural healing of circumcision wounds.


I Samuel 6:3: A trespass offering brought healing.


I Samuel 16:14-23: An evil spirit troubles Saul.


I Kings 5:23; II Chronicles 16:12: Diseases in the feet.


I Kings 8:37-40: Plagues in the land.


I Kings 13:4-6: A man with a withered hand.


I Kings 17:17-24: Elijah raises a child from the dead. (The messenger and the message are verified by the healing.)


II Kings 1:2; 8:8-9: Shall I recover of this disease?


II Kings 2:19-22: Healing of waters by Elisha.


II Kings 4:8-37: Raising of the Shunamite's son.


II Kings 5:1-14: The healing of Naaman.


II Kings 13:14,21: Elisha is sick with a sickness unto death.


II Kings 20:1-11: Hezekiah's illness.


II Chronicles 6:26-31: Prayer of repentance and sickness.


II Chronicles 7:14: "I will heal their land."


II Chronicles 16:12: A man with a great disease does not seek God.

 

II Chronicles 20:9: God hears when we cry in affliction.


II Chronicles 21:12-30: An incurable disease of the bowels.


II Chronicles 24:25: Disease is called great.


II Chronicles 26:19: Uzziah's leprosy.


II Chronicles 30:20: Healing of people by Hezekiah's prayers.


II Chronicles 32:24-26: Hezekiah's illness.


Job l-2: These chapters reveal the sources of Job's problems, including his sickness.


Job 5:18; 30:18: Job talks about His disease.


Psalms 6:2-3: "O Lord heal me."


Psalms 27:1: "The Lord is the strength of my life."


Psalms 30:2: "I cried and you healed me."


Psalms 32:3-5: Acknowledged sin results in healing.


Psalms 34:19-20: "Many are the afflictions of righteous, but the Lord delivers him out of them all."


Psalms 38:3,7: Anger and sin affects your health; disease is called "loathsome."


Psalms 41:1-8: "Heal my soul for I have sinned against thee." Disease is called evil.


Psalms 42:11; 43:5: God is the health of our countenance.


Psalms 42:1-5: Healing for a downcast spirit.


Psalm 55:1-2: Persevering prayer and healing.


Psalms 60:2: "Heal the breaches of the earth."


Psalms 67:2: "That thy way may be known upon earth, thy saving healing among all nations."


Psalms 72:13: We are to pity the weak.


Psalms 91:9,10: "Neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling."


Psalms 103:1-5: "Forget not His benefits. . . Who healeth all thy diseases."


Psalms 105:37: Israel came forth without one feeble person among them. Three million people were all well and strong.


Psalms 107:17-20: "He sent His Word and healed them."


Psalms 119:25-28: We are strengthened by the Word.


Psalms 119:67: "Before I was afflicted, I went astray."


Psalms 147:3: "Who healeth all thy diseases." Healing for a broken heart.


Psalms 105:37: "He brought them forth. . . not one feeble among them."


Proverbs 3:7-8: How to be healthy.


Proverbs 4:20-23: The issues of life are affected by heart attitude. God's promises are life to those that find them and health to all their flesh.


Proverbs 12:18: The tongue of the wise brings healing.


Proverbs 13:17: A faithful ambassador is compared to health.


Proverbs 15:4,30: A wholesome tongue is life; good reports affect health.


Proverbs 16:24: The Word of God brings healing to the bones.


Proverbs 17:22: A broken spirit affects the bones.


Ecclesiastes 3:3: There is a time to heal.


Ecclesiastes 5:17: Sorrow and wrath are related to sickness.


Isaiah 6:10: Understanding, conversion, healing.


Isaiah 19:22: When God is entreated, He heals. (Entreated means to ask earnestly and solicit pressingly.)


Isaiah 32:3-4: Prophecy of healing being part of the Kingdom of God.


Isaiah 33:24: "Inhabitants shall say, I am not sick."


Isaiah 35:5-6: Healing in the Millennium.


Isaiah 38:1-12,16: Hezekiah's illness and his return to health.


Isaiah 53:5: We are promised healing and deliverance through the atonement.


Isaiah 57:18-19: Draw near for healing.


Isaiah 58:8: Health shall spring forth.


Isaiah 61:1: Jesus was sent to bind up the brokenhearted (emotional healing).


Isaiah 58:8: Health springing forth speedily.


Jeremiah 3:22: God heals backsliding when we return to Him.


Jeremiah 8:14-15; 20-22: A time of healing. Bitterness of sin is tied to physical health.


Jeremiah 15:18: How to deal with an incurable wound.


Jeremiah 14:19: Is there no healing for us?


Jeremiah 17:14: "Heal me and I will be healed."


Jeremiah 30:12-17: God will restore health.


Jeremiah 33:6: "I will cure them."


Jeremiah 46:11: "Thou shalt not be cured".


Jeremiah 51:8-9: Healing of Babylon.


Lamentations 2:13: "Who can heal thee?”


Lamentations 3:33: "God does not willingly afflict."


Ezekiel 14:19: "Is there no healing for us?”


Ezekiel 17:14: "Heal me and I will be healed".


Ezekiel 30:17: "I will restore health."


Ezekiel 30:12-13: Incurable wounds medicine cannot heal.


Ezekiel 30:21: What God breaks cannot be healed.


Ezekiel 33:6: "I will heal them."


Ezekiel 34:4,16,21: A warning to shepherds who have not healed.


Ezekiel 46:11: "Thou shalt not be cured."


Ezekiel 47:8-12: Healing of the waters.


Daniel 4:34,36: Nebuchadnezzar's healing.


Hosea 5:13: Going elsewhere for healing. Man cannot cure a wound inflicted by God.


Hosea 6:1: "He hath torn and He will heal."


Hosea 7:1: Healing for Israel.


Hosea 11:3: "They knew not I healed them."


Hosea 14:4: "I will heal their backslidings."


Nahum 3:19: A terminal condition.


Zechariah 11:16: A warning to shepherds who do not heal.


Malachi 4:2: Healing in His wings.


New Testament References


Matthew 8:13: The point of contact sets the time.


Matthew 8:17: Jesus bore our sicknesses.


Matthew 10:1: Power over sickness and demons is given to the disciples.


Matthew 18:19-21: Any two agreeing receive what asked.


Mark 2:17: Christ came to heal sinners.


Mark 3:15-17: Christ gives power to heal sicknesses.


Mark 4:18-19: Healing part of the anointing; Jesus sent to heal.


Mark 11:24: If we believe when we pray (not after you receive), you will receive.


Mark 16:18: In Jesus' name believers will heal sick and cast out demons.


Luke 5:31: The sick need a physician.


Luke 7:6: Unworthiness is viewed by Jesus as faith.


Luke 7:22-23: The most convincing argument is experience.


Luke 17:6: Small faith can bring great results.


Luke 18:7-8: Do not give up before your answer comes.


(The story of Daniel in the Old Testament also illustrates the importance of prevailing prayer: God heard Daniel from the first, but Satan hindered for some 21 days.)


John 6:53-58: The body and blood of Jesus bring life.


John 10:10: Jesus came that we can have life. Satan came to kill, steal, and destroy.


John 11:1-45: A sickness not healed at the moment gives way to a greater miracle.


John 14:12-13: The works Jesus did, we are to do.


John 15:7: The importance of abiding in asking and receiving.


John 16:24: Ask in His name and you will receive.


Romans 2:4: The goodness of God leads to repentance. (Note that sickness does not lead to repentance; it is the goodness of God.)


Romans 8:19-23: The whole world in the process of decay.


II Corinthians 4:16: Our outward man perishes, but the inward man can be renewed.


Ephesians 3:20-21: God has the power to work in us above all that we ask or think.


Philippians 2:25-27: The illness of Epaproditus.


Colossians 4:14: Luke, a physician, was part of Paul's evangelistic team.


II Timothy 4:20: Trophimus' case is so brief, little can be gathered from it. Paul did leave him sick, but we are not told if he was later healed instantaneously or gradually, or what might have prevented his healing.


Hebrews 4:15: He is touched with our infirmities.


Hebrews 11:1: Faith is the evidence of things (healing) not seen.


James 1:8: We must ask in faith and not waver.


James 1:17: Every good gift (healing) is from God.


James 5:14-15: Calling the elders for anointing with oil, the prayer of faith, healing and forgiveness.


I Peter 2:24: We are healed by His wounds.


I John 3:22: Whatever we ask we can receive if we are obedient.


III John 1:2: Health is related to the condition of your soul.


Mark 7:36; 8:26; Matthew 8:4: Do not sensationalize healing.


Revelation 20:2-3: When Satan is bound, there is no more sickness and death.


Revelation 21:4: The final healing: No more sickness and death.


2. God has promised healing and deliverance. Here are some verses regarding the promises of God:

 

The Gospel is the power of God to everyone that believes. (Romans 1:16)

 

. . . There hath not failed one word of all His good promise. . .

            (I Kings 8:56)

 

God's promises are. . . "life to those that find them, and health to all their flesh". (Proverbs 4:22)

 

For all the promises of God are in Him yea (yes) and amen (so be it) unto the glory of God by us. (II Corinthians 1:20)


3. Here is how some of the other spiritual gifts are used in connection with the gifts of healing:


-Teaching And Exhortation: Based on the Word, they increase faith for healing.


-Prophecy, Tongues, Interpretation: May bring a direct word from God regarding the illness and/or healing.


-Discerning Of Spirits: Discerns the spirits in operation and reveals whether healing or deliverance is needed.


-Gift Of Faith: Imparts a special confidence to act upon the knowledge of discernment and pray the prayer of faith.


-Word Of Knowledge: Gives knowledge of the root cause of sickness. It is especially helpful with inner healing or when physical sickness is related to a demonic problem. It can give insight about sins which need to be confessed, demonic forces involved, and mental attitudes which may be blocking healing, etc.


-Word Of Wisdom: Enables us to use the knowledge God has given to give a word of wisdom (instruction) to the sick person.


-Gift Of Miracles: Instantaneous and creative healings, i.e., the growing of a limb, etc. They are events for which no natural explanation can be given, something which in no way could have occurred by natural means.


For further study of spiritual gifts, obtain the Harvestime International Institute course entitled "Ministry Of The Holy Spirit."


4. A word about miracles: To accept miracles, you must first accept an independent, divine force which is superior to the natural and able to control it. That force is God. Miracles are a form of divine revelation. God created a natural order, but He is not bound by it.

    

Actually, miraculous healings are a restoration to normality. It is death, not resurrection, that is unnatural. It is illness and demonic possession which breaks the original laws of God's nature. So actually, miraculous healings, deliverance, etc., are a return to normalcy. In reality, it is not miracles that are unusual, but their absence from our ministry.

 






















CHAPTER SEVENTEEN


VARIABLES THAT AFFECT HEALING



OBJECTIVES:


Upon completion of this chapter you will be able to:


-Write the Key Verse from memory.

-Define "variable."

-Discuss some traditions of man that affect healing.

-Discuss some variables that affect healing.


KEY VERSE:

 

That thy way may be known upon earth, thy saving health among all nations. (Psalms 67:2)


INTRODUCTION


Why don't more people get healed? Why are some healed while others are not? Why are very shallow and worldly Christians sometimes healed while more sincere and dedicated people have not yet received healing? These are some of the questions you face when you begin to minister healing and deliverance. This lesson concerns variables that affect healing. A "variable" is a factor that causes variations or different results.


God promised healing in His Word. We must remember, however, that every promise of God is conditional on the response of man. This is why it is important to understand the variables that affect healing.


UNDERSTANDING AND RESPONDING TO VARIABLES


Variables in the ministry of healing are reasons why some people get healed and others do not. Before you begin this study, it is important to remember that you will never have the answers to every question you encounter in healing and deliverance.


It is human nature to want to understand everything. The first temptation centered on this very issue. This desire to know all things stems from rebellion at having unanswered questions. This problem of human nature is one you must conquer in order to minister healing and deliverance effectively.


The Bible does reveal some variables that affect healing and deliverance, but you will never have answers to every question. If you did, you would have no need of God or faith. The Bible is clear that some things are revealed to us, while others are not:

 

The secret things belong unto the Lord our God; but those things which are revealed belong unto us and to our children for ever, that we may do all the words of this law. (Deuteronomy 29:29)


In healing and deliverance, you must learn to put aside unanswered questions and leave the secret things with the Lord.


Healing and deliverance are part of the Gospel just like salvation. When you minister healing and deliverance and some do not receive, you will be tempted to give up. But consider this question: Do you stop preaching salvation just because everyone who hears the message does not get saved?

Why then are we so quick to stop ministering healing and deliverance because not everyone receives? Most likely because in healing and deliverance, pride enters in. We tend to be embarrassed when we pray for a visibly sick person and they do not get healed. Others can see this because it is external. If someone responds for salvation but does not really get saved, people cannot see it because it is internal. Our pride is affected by what people can see externally.


You will never have answers for all the variables that affect healing any more than you will for the factors that affect responses to salvation. Some get saved, some do not. Some get healed, some do not.


The Bible does reveal some variables that affect healing and deliverance, however. It is important for you to understand these so you can help others work through them to receive healing. Here are some of these variables:


LACK OF TEACHING


Lack of knowledge about healing, its principles, source, how to exercise faith, and receive it can affect healing. God said:

 

My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge. (Hosea 4:6)


Jesus said that we fall into error when we do not understand God's Word and His power:

 

Ye do err, not knowing the Scriptures nor the power of God.

            (Matthew 22:29)


Some people do not receive healing because they do not understand God's Word and His power. Faith for healing comes by hearing the Word of God concerning healing (Romans 10:17). The Bible calls the Word of God the seed. Some people try to reap a harvest of healing without the Word of healing being planted in their hearts. The seed cannot work unless it is in us. Before saying "I am the Lord that healeth thee," God first said, "If thou wilt diligently hearken unto my Word." The Word preceded healing.


How many people would get saved if they never heard a message on salvation? Or how many would get saved if the main points of a salvation message were:


            -It may not be God's will to save you.

            -Your sin is for God's glory.

            -The day of salvation is past.


Yet we hear these statements about healing which is also part of the atonement of Christ:


            -It may not be God's will to heal you.

            -Your sickness is for God's glory.

            -The day of healing is past.


People must be taught the Word of God regarding healing just as they are taught salvation. It is the seed of the Word that brings forth the harvest of healing.


TRADITIONS OF MEN


Traditions are beliefs, rules, and principles of man. Our traditions and beliefs hinder the work of God's Word:

 

. . . Thus have ye made the commandment of God of none effect by your tradition. (Matthew 15:6)


If faith comes by hearing God's Word, then it can leave by hearing and accepting traditions and doctrines of man that destroy faith. Here are some common traditions of man that affect healing:


TRADITION SAYS:


"Healing and miracles are not for today."


Some people claim healing was only for Bible times or for the future when Jesus returns.




OUR RESPONSE:


God says:

 

. . . For I am the Lord that healeth thee. (Exodus 15:26)


"I am" is present tense. How can we change it to "I was" in the past or "I will be" in the future? The Bible teaches that God does not change:

 

Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness neither shadow of turning. (James 1:17)

 

For I am the Lord, I change not. . . (Malachi 3:6)


God has not changed since the beginning of time:

 

Jesus Christ, the same yesterday, today, and forever. (Hebrews 13:8)


If the day of miracles is past, then so is the day of salvation, for there is no greater miracle than salvation. Some say healing is for the future when Jesus returns to earth. If this is true, then the ministry of teachers, pastors and other leaders must be for that future time also because the gift of healing is a spiritual gift just as these other gifts.


The most convincing argument against claims that miracles are not for today is the documented record of experience. Jesus performed miracles and healings:

 

Then Jesus answering said unto them, Go your way, and tell John what things ye have seen and heard; how that the blind see, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, to the poor the Gospel is preached. . . (Luke 7:22) See also Acts 4:14-16.


The book of Acts records miracles and healing in the early church. The documented record of modern Church history also confirms many healings and miracles.


Some people ask, "If healing is for today, why don't believers go around raising all those who have taken sick and died?" Raising the dead was not part of the Great Commission given to the Church. It was commanded to the disciples when they were first sent on a preaching tour to announce the Kingdom. The raising of the dead was the first fruits of the resurrection of Jesus which was to come.


There is a difference between special miracles and covenant miracles. Special miracles were performed as a sign in special circumstances, such as turning water to wine, walking on the sea, multiplying the loaves and fishes, opening the Red Sea, and raising the dead. Healing is a covenant miracle of the Old Testament, not a special miracle. God still does raise the dead, but this is determined by His sovereignty and is not a general part of our commission to heal.


While we are on the subject of death, some skeptics claim that if divine healing always worked, no Christian would ever die. No such claim is made by Scriptures. The Bible only provides divine health within the normal life span.


Although the atonement of Christ purchased our eternal redemption from death, these mortal bodies will eventually die unless Jesus returns first and the rapture occurs. The same Bible which teaches healing also sets a limit on the length of man's life:

 

The days of our years are threescore years and ten. . . (Psalms 90:10)

 

And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment. (Hebrews 9:27)


TRADITION SAYS:


"There was no competent medical help in the time of Jesus. Now that help is available, we are expected to use it instead of praying to God for healing."


OUR RESPONSE:


As early as 400 B.C. there was a medical healing science. Hippocrates 460-370 B.C., the father of medicine, developed the science of medicine to a relatively high state. Some of his techniques are still used today. Greece, Egypt, and Rome had many competent practitioners in the time of Jesus.


Divine healing has nothing to do with the competence or incompetence of medical science. It is a blessing provided in the atonement. Every good gift comes from God, so it is acceptable to use legitimate medical resources. Remember, however, that medicine is not a substitute for the covenant promise of healing.


Despite the advances of medicine there are still many incurable illnesses, so divine healing is still needed. Also many people are beyond the reach of medical help. For example, in Africa it has been estimated that some 80% of the people do not have even elementary medical care.


TRADITION SAYS:

 

"Divine healing is only taught by false cults."




OUR RESPONSE:


Wesley, Luther, and Zinzendorf, leaders of the Methodist, Lutheran, and Moravian churches, respectively, all taught divine healing. Those who teach it today, along with the saving power of the blood of Jesus and the deity of Christ, are no more unorthodox than these leaders. Some false cults do teach healing, but it is not true Biblical healing. It is "psychic" or "mind over matter" healing from a source other than God.


Satan is a deceiver and imitator. We do not eliminate divine healing just because he deceives and heals through evil powers. Satan deceives many into believing that by washing in the Ganges River in India they will be cleansed of sin. Do we stop preaching salvation just because Satan imitates it? The fact that Satan would bother to imitate divine healing is another indication there is a true healing.


TRADITION SAYS:


"Divine healing puts more emphasis on the body than the soul."


OUR RESPONSE:


Some in healing ministries have fallen into this pattern but this is not the Biblical pattern of healing. The Biblical pattern deals with the whole man, body, soul, and spirit. Healing is not a Gospel of itself, it is one aspect of the Gospel of Christ. It should never be preached apart from atonement for salvation of the souls of sinful men and women. The church's concentration on the spirit and medicine's preoccupation with the body have both missed the whole person concept presented in the Bible.


TRADITION SAYS:


"You are sick because you sinned."


OUR RESPONSE:


We have already covered this subject in the discussion on the source and reasons for sickness in Chapter Sixteen. While all sickness is in the world because of sin, a person is not necessarily sick because of personal sin.


TRADITION SAYS:


"It is God's will for your to be sick. It is for His glory."




OUR RESPONSE:


Many do not question whether or not God is able to heal, but whether He is willing. The Bible indicates we are unwise if we do not understand God's will:

 

Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is. (Ephesians 5:17)


Knowing God's will concerning sickness provides fertile ground on which faith can grow. The prayer of faith is the only prayer that is effective in obtaining healing. It cannot be prayed as long as we are wondering if it is God's will to heal.


First, if you really believe it is God's will for you to be sick, then it is wrong to ask someone to pray for your healing. If sickness is of God, then doctors would be of the devil because they are trying to get rid of sickness. Hospitals would be in error because they are seeking to get rid of disease in rebellion against God's will. Every nurse would be defying God with each effort to relieve suffering.


Those that believe sickness is a blessing should not accept medical treatment to get rid of their "blessing," but should pray all their family and fellow church members would receive a similar "blessing." Those who believe it is from God should not let the doctor operate and remove their "blessing." If you really believe sickness is God's will for you as a believer, you should stop taking medicine and seeing doctors because you are fighting against the will of God.


But we know that legitimate doctors, medicines, hospitals, and medical science are an extension of the goodness of God. Since sickness is of Satan, every legitimate manner of relieving suffering is of our Heavenly Father. (By legitimate we mean those methods that do not involve Satanic methods or violate God's Word.)


It is true that our bodies are bought with a price and we are to glorify God in them, whether we are sick or well. But in the Biblical record, God was glorified when people were healed. If sickness glorifies God, then Christ robbed God of glory by healing the sick. If sickness glorifies God, we should all pray to be sick. God is not glorified by sickness in the body anymore than by sickness of sin in the spirit.


Sometimes God permits sickness to come on a believer, but always remember that Satan is the source. (Job is an example of this.) God does not will sickness on a believer. He has knowledge of the attack by Satan and He uses all things (even bad) to work together for your good. This is why that even during sickness you can be drawn closer to the Lord. God is always seeking to bring good out of evil. He used the effects of sin to remedy it by the death of Jesus.


Paul first preached in Galatia because of a schedule change due to illness (Galatians 4:13-15). Trophimus' sickness kept him from going to Rome with Paul and suffering a similar fate (II Timothy 4:20). Sickness was used to prevent sin in Genesis 12 and 20. Although these examples illustrate how God uses it, remember that. . .

 

. . . He doth not afflict willingly. . . (Lamentations 3:33)


God is not the source of sickness in a believer's life, but He takes something Satan intends for evil and works in you to accomplish spiritual victories as you undergo the attack.


Sickness alone does not produce saints. It can produce bitter, complaining, unbelieving people. It is the Word that sanctifies and produces growth (John 17:17). While it is true that you often get into the Word more during a sickness, it is not necessary to have sickness in order to grow spiritually. It is helpful to remember this: The will of God for believers is Christ-likeness in character. Everything else, including sickness and health, derives its significance in relation to this divine goal (Romans 8:28-29).


In the case of unbelievers, sickness results from sin and the inherent judgment of God that comes from sin. But even this can be used by God for good, for as healing and deliverance is ministered, salvation can result.


God has given many promises in His Word regarding healing and deliverance. Why would God give these in His Word if it is His will for you to be sick? If a believer says, "I do not know if it is God's will to heal me," ask him, "Is it God's will to keep His promises?"


Jesus said, "If you have seen me, you have seen the Father." He said this because He did the work and will of the Father (John 14:9). If you ever wonder whether or not God wants to heal, you have only to look at our Lord's actions.


When you pray for healing, pray "Thy will be done" or "according to Thy will." Do not say “if it be Thy will” when you are praying for healing and deliverance. A sinner does not pray "Lord, save me if it be Thy will." Healing is part of the atonement just like salvation. If implies doubt that God wants to make us whole. "According to Thy will" projects confident faith, while yet leaving the method, extent, and timing to Him.


Even in cases of sickness unto death, pray "according to Thy will" not "if it is Thy will" to heal. "According to Thy will" leaves the time and conditions to God. He may choose the ultimate healing through death that rids a believer from the presence of sickness for all eternity.


Jesus taught us to pray "Thy will be done on earth, even as it is in Heaven." There is no sickness and disease in Heaven, so we can pray confidently against it on earth knowing it is not His will. Jesus never prayed "heal if it is your will, God." The only time He prayed "If it be Thy will" was in relationship to His own submission to the plan of God for His life--not healing.


"If it be your will" destroys faith. When it was used by an outcast leper who did not know Christ's will in healing. Jesus corrected his uncertainty by assuring him, "I will." Never turn God's facts into hopes or questions. Act on them as realities and you will find them powerful.


Just because someone is not healed immediately or because he dies from a sickness unto death does not mean it was not God's will to heal Him. We view things in terms of time, while God views them in terms of eternity. You must remember that there are. . .


Delayed Healings: Sara was not healed immediately of her barrenness. Job was not healed immediately. John the Baptist's father was not healed of his dumbness until a set time. Jesus prayed twice for one blind man, who received only partial healing the first time. Healings are sometimes delayed to bring greater glory to God. A good example of this is the story of the resurrection of Lazarus.


Sicknesses Unto Death: Death is just an event within the realm of eternity in the life of a believer. Even a sickness unto death is swallowed up in victory because death to a believer is the ultimate healing. As we enter the presence of the King we are made whole and no longer suffer from sin or sickness. In speaking of death, Paul says we are prepared for this purpose: "To be absent from the body and present with the Lord" (II Corinthians 5:6-9).


If you do not believe that healing is for all, then you must believe that healing is governed by direct revelation in each case as to whether or not it is God's will to heal. You are then relying on direct revelation to man rather than the written Word of God. You will have no basis for faith until you receive a special revelation in each case that the sick one is among the favored ones to be healed.


TRADITION SAYS:


"Many are the afflictions of the righteous. Your sickness is an affliction you must bear because you are righteous."


OUR RESPONSE:


The meaning of the word "afflictions" used in Psalms 34:19, from where this tradition developed, does not refer to sickness, but to trials, hardships, persecutions, or temptations. Even if it did refer to sickness, the remainder of the verse indicates that the Lord wants to deliver us.


In James 5:13-16 a difference is noted between afflictions and sickness. If you are afflicted with trials, persecutions, and temptations, you are to pray for yourself (James 5:13). Although you can ask others to pray with you, they are not called to pray all your troubles away.


The Scripture instructs you to pray when you are afflicted because you need to learn how to be an overcomer by praying yourself through trials and temptations. In cases of sickness, however, the elders are to be called to pray (James 5:14). The sick are to be saved (from their physical sickness), raised up (return of strength), and forgiven of sin (spiritual healing).


TRADITION SAYS:


"Your sickness is a `thorn in the flesh' like Paul's or it is your cross. You must learn to live with it."


OUR RESPONSE:


The claim that sickness is your cross is easily dealt with. The cross is not problems, sicknesses, and afflictions that come upon us through no choice of our own. Jesus made it clear that "taking up the cross" is a voluntary act, not something we accept because we have no choice. Jesus did not treat sickness and death as a cross sent from God. He treated them as an enemy.


The "thorn in the flesh" claim is usually based on Paul's thorn in the flesh described in II Corinthians 12. People who believe Paul's thorn was sickness make it a prominent point when discussing healing. Many believers have been deceived and not received healing because of the thorn as sickness doctrine.


Let us examine what the Scriptures actually say about this thorn.


What It Was:


The Bible says it was "a messenger". The Greek word "messenger" appears seven times in the New Testament. It is translated "angel" 181 times. All 188 times it is speaking of a personality, not a sickness or disease. A "messenger" is a personality.


The use of the word "thorns" in the Old Testament also supports this. Thorns is used in Numbers 33:55 and Joshua 23:13 to describe the inhabitants of the land of Canaan. In both of these cases it was not a physical affliction, but a buffeting by an enemy.


Who It Was From:


The Bible says it was a messenger from Satan.


Why It Was Permitted:


Paul said the thorn was permitted because of the abundance of revelations he received and his tendency towards pride. Before anyone claims to have a thorn in the flesh he should consider how many revelations and visions he has had. Does he qualify for a thorn? Most folks who think they have a thorn in the flesh have not had any kind of revelation or vision.


The thorn was also part of a fulfillment of prophecy. When Paul was converted, God said. . .


 

. . . For I will shew him how great things he must suffer for my name's sake. (Acts 9:16)


What It Did:


The thorn buffeted Paul. To "buffet" means to "give repeated blows, over and over and over." The word "buffeting" does not refer to a permanent state of sickness but to repeated blows. The messenger was sent to buffet Paul to try to stop the Word of God from being preached.


God never promised to take away from believers their external buffeting, but He did promise to take away sickness. We are repeatedly warned in Scripture that if we live godly we will suffer persecution and affliction, but not sickness.


How It Was Manifested:


Here are some examples of the various ways this thorn stirred up opposition to buffet Paul:


-Jews determined to kill Paul right after his conversion: Acts 9:23

-Paul was hindered in joining the believers: Acts 9:26-29

-He was opposed by Satan: Acts 13:6-12

-He was opposed by Jews in a mob: Acts 13:44-49

-He was expelled out of Antioch in Pisidia: Acts 13:50

-He was mobbed and expelled from Iconium: Acts 14:1-5

-He fled to Lystra and Derbe where he was stoned and left for dead: Acts 14:6-19

-He was disputing continually with false brethren: Acts 19:8

-He was beaten and jailed at Philippi: Acts 16:12-40

-He was mobbed and expelled from Thessalonica: Acts 17:1-10

-He was mobbed and expelled from Berea: Acts 17:10-14

-He was mobbed at Corinth: Acts 18:1-23

-He was mobbed at Ephesus: Acts 19:23-31

-There was a plot against his life by the Jews: Acts 20:3

-He was seized by Jews, mobbed, tried in court five times, and suffered other hardships: II Corinthians 11:23-33


Never once, in all his writings, does Paul name sickness as a buffeting which he suffered. In I Corinthians 4:11, Paul showed that his idea of buffeting was not a permanent sickness. He said, "Even unto this present hour, we both hunger and thirst, and are naked, and are buffeted, and have no certain dwelling place." Paul did experience sickness as indicated in Galatians 4:13-16, but this was not his thorn because it was not a permanent condition. He said he had it only at first.


Some believe Paul's thorn was defective eyes, but his eyes were healed of blindness (Acts 9:18). Believing that he continued to have eye trouble discredits the healing power of God. Also, would it be right to call eye problems that resulted from seeing the glory of God a messenger of Satan? Paul himself tells us in the year 60 A.D., when he wrote this epistle, that it was around 14 years ago that he received the abundant revelation which resulted in the thorn in the flesh. That was 12 years after his conversion experience in which he saw God's glory.


When Paul uses the phrase in Galatians 4:15 that "ye would have plucked out your eyes and have given them to me," it is a Hebrew figure of speech. It is similar to phrases used in some places today to express intense desire. For example, "I would give my right arm." If Paul had the oriental eye disease of ophthalmia with pus running from his eyes as some claim, it is strange that this would inspire people for faith for special miracles. When Paul wrote the Corinthians about their failure to discern the Lord's Body as a reason for being sick and weak, they probably would have asked "For what cause are you so sickly?"


Its Results:


Paul speaks of his "infirmity" which means "want of strength, weakness, an inability to produce results through his own natural abilities."


The conclusion regarding Paul's thorn is that although we cannot know for certain exactly what the thorn was, if you have been taught it was sickness keep the following in mind:


Paul's thorn resulted in God's power being demonstrated in His life. Some people use the "thorn in the flesh" excuse to languish in illness. They should remember that the only Biblical example of such a thorn in the flesh out-wrote, out-preached, out-traveled all of his partners in ministry. The thorn did not hinder his dynamic service for the Kingdom nor the demonstration of God's power through him.


UNBELIEF


Another variable that affects healing is unbelief. Unbelief may result from. . .


            -Thinking God cannot heal.


            -Thinking God can heal, but He may not choose to heal me.


            -Thinking God can heal, and He may heal me, but not now.


            -An environment of unbelief that prevents healing.


There are several Biblical examples of how unbelief hindered the work of God. In the city of Nazareth Jesus. . .


 

. . . did not many mighty works there because of their unbelief.

            (Matthew 13:58)


Jesus marveled, or was amazed, that people would not believe:

 

And He marveled because of their unbelief. . . (Mark 6:5-6)


The Bible says:

 

But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering, For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed.

 

For let not that man think he that he shall receive any thing of the Lord. A double minded man is unstable in all his ways. (James 1:6-8)


Read the story of the healing of Jarius' daughter in Mark 5:35-40. You will discover that those who hindered the environment of faith were put out of the room while Jesus ministered healing. Communal unbelief is one of the main reasons we do not see healing and deliverance flowing in our churches as God intends. We are members one of another. If part of our Body does not believe in healing, this unbelief can hinder the flow of its power in our midst.


The Bible says, "These signs shall follow THEM that believe." This verse is speaking of believers (the church). The verse does not say "him that believes," referring to an individual. It was not the faith of one or two solitary evangelists that resulted in the healings recorded in Acts. It was the faith of a Spirit filled Church as a whole.


If Jesus could do no mighty works in Nazareth because of their (communal) unbelief, is it not also true that our communal unbelief hinders healing? Today a large part of the Church is opposing that for which the early Church prevailed in prayer. They have not accepted the Biblical attitude towards sickness. They have not been taught the Word of God about healing. Yet, they point to those who fail to receive healing to accuse those trying to minister healing. But it is a failure for which they--communally--are largely responsible.


Those who preach the full Gospel of salvation with healing and deliverance are often obliged to labor in a "Nazareth" of unbelief.


We see more salvations because there is almost universal acceptance of the doctrine of salvation in fundamental churches. But we do not see many healings because we are compelled to labor in the face of tradition, rejection, and unbelief in many denominations.


If communal unbelief does not affect the flow of the healing ministry, why did Jesus not go ahead and minister in fullness in Nazareth? (Today, generally we witness more healings in Third World nations than in Western nations because there is an attitude of communal belief. What God has said, they believe. They expect the supernatural as part of their everyday lives. Many people in

the Western world are not as receptive because of their materialistic orientation and humanistic reasoning.)


LACK OF FAITH


Unbelief is the attitude that God cannot or will not do something. Absence of unbelief does not necessarily mean you have faith. For example, an atheist does not believe in God. An agnostic is neutral. A believer has faith. The lack of unbelief on the part of an agnostic does not mean he has faith.


You must replace unbelief with faith in God because it is the prayer of faith that raises up the sick (James 5:15). You must appeal in faith, speak words of faith, and act in faith. You must walk by faith and not sight (looking to the condition of the body or symptoms).


Satan tries to prevent healing by getting you to walk by sight instead of faith. He has you look at symptoms. He has you look to others who claimed to be healed, but were not. It is not faith in your faith or faith in the faith of another. Faith alone does not heal. It is God who heals. Paul perceived the cripple had faith to be healed by God (Acts 14:8-10).


It does not take a great amount of faith to be healed. Jesus said faith the size of a mustard seed was very powerful. Jesus meets people at the level of their faith. Where they felt it was necessary to have His bodily presence, He went. Where they had faith that it was not necessary, He spoke the Word from a distance and healing occurred.


When the sick are not healed, people usually try to blame lack of faith as the reason. But as you are learning in this lesson, there are many other variables to consider. Jesus never condemned people who sought healing for their lack of faith.


PERSONAL UNCONFESSED SIN


The Bible confirms a direct relationship between individual sin and sickness in some cases:

 

Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual, fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much. (James 5:16)


David said, "If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me."


God has not promised to destroy the works of the Devil in the body while we are clinging to the works of the Devil in our soul. If there is iniquity in the heart of the one who is sick, he may not be healed. If there is iniquity in the heart of the one ministering, healing may not occur because the Lord is not hearing him.


An unforgiving spirit or holding a grudge hinders healing. Jesus said, "If ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Heavenly Father forgive your trespasses." If God cannot forgive us when we will not forgive others, He cannot heal us either, for healing involves wholeness of soul, spirit, and body.


REFUSAL TO BE MADE WHOLE


Jesus asked the lame man at the Pool of Bethesda:

 

"Wilt thou be made whole?" (John 5:6)


Often, we seek only healing or deliverance. God wants to deal with the whole man and heal body, soul, and spirit. Because man is body, soul, and spirit, the concept of wholeness implies dealing with all of these. We cannot emphasize physical health apart from that of soul and spirit, healing apart from salvation.


God is a spirit. He relates to you through your spirit. Your spirit governs your physical, mental, spiritual, and emotional life. Your whole life is spiritually based. Because you are a spiritually based being, healing of the body begins in the spirit.


When God created man, His spirit was to be the governing power of his life on earth. It was to have supremacy over the mind and body and bring them together into a unified whole man in which God would live. Originally, in the Garden of Eden, man was in close spiritual relationship with God.


In forbidding the tree of knowledge in the Garden, God was forbidding man to live on the level of physical and intellectual knowledge. When man sinned, his spirit was submerged and he chose to live by his intellect. When the mind ascended above the spirit and took over, the spiritual part of man died (or ceased to function as the source of his response to God and to life). From that time, there was a separation of spirit, mind, and body, which resulted in a lack of harmony in the human being, between the man, his environment, and his Creator.


Healing is more than the absence of sickness. It is more than a healthy body. It is the return to proper functioning of every part (body, soul, spirit, including the mind, emotions etc.) in harmony with every other part, the environment, and the Creator.


LACK OF DECISION AND DESIRE


Jesus ask the lame man at Bethesda:

 

"Wilt thou be made whole?" (John 5:6)


At this point, the lame man had to make a decision. Some people do not want to be healed. They enjoy the sympathy and attention they receive from being sick. Some receive medical benefits through pensions or legal settlements and they do not want to lose them. Others have a great desire to go be with the Lord and do not want to be healed.


PROBLEMS WITH OUR REQUEST


There are several problems with our requests for healing that can hinder its manifestation:


NOT ASKING:


First, and most basic, is that sometimes we do not ask for healing. We turn to medicine for help or to friends for comfort:

 

Ye have not because ye ask not. . . (James 4:2)


NOT ASKING SPECIFICALLY:


Sometimes, prayers are hindered because they are not specific:

 

Ye ask amiss. . . (James 4:3)


When you are amiss, you are not specific in your prayers. You did not hit the target.


ASKING WITH THE WRONG MOTIVE:


Sometimes, we pray with the wrong motive:

 

Ye ask and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts. (James 4:3)


Some people want to be healed, but do not want to change their sinful, worldly, uncommitted lifestyle. They want to be well so they can go back to doing their own thing. People should consider these questions: "What is your motive for wanting to get healed? Is it so you can return to self centered living? So you can rush around doing good works instead of accomplishing God's specific purpose for you?"


LACK OF PERSEVERANCE


Sometimes we do not persevere (continue) in prayer long enough. Paul himself had "at first" preached while being ill (Galatians 4:13-14) and was later healed. Prayer apparently had no immediate effect on Epaphroditus who almost died (Philippians 2:27) and Trophimus who was left behind ill (II Timothy 4:20). Yet they both eventually recovered. (Note also that Paul continued to pray for the sick despite that in these cases there was not immediate healing).


Some people think if you ask more than once for healing it is lack of faith. Jesus did not teach that persisting in prayer showed unbelief or lack of faith. He encouraged it. Luke 11:1-13 teaches the importance of persisting in prayer in the parables of the inopportune friend (verses 5-8) and the widow and the judge (verses l-8). Daniel’s example also encourages perseverance. God heard his prayer from the first time he prayed, but Satan hindered the angel bringing the answer.


Do not give up if healing does not occur the first time you pray. Remember that there are the "asking, seeking, and knocking" levels of prayer. Sometimes you ask and get an immediate answer. Sometimes you have to seek and continue to knock before receiving an answer to other prayers. The Prophet Elisha prayed one time for fire to fall from Heaven. He had to pray seven times for rain to fall.


Continue to persevere in prayer until you know your petition is heard. When you have that confirmation in your spirit, then begin to praise God even if you do not yet see visible results:


-Jehoshaphat and the children of Israel began praising God in a loud voice before they actually saw the answer to their prayers.


-Jesus thanked God in advance for raising Lazarus.


-Once Abraham had assurance of the promise of a son, he did not keep on praying. He believed and glorified God.


DISOBEDIENCE IN THE HEALING PROCESS


Sometimes God gives special instructions in the healing process. For example, through the prophet Elisha, God told Naaman to go wash in the muddy river to receive healing (II Kings 5:1-14). Sometimes a very simple act of obedience is all that is between you and a miracle.


IMPROPERLY DISCERNING CHRIST'S BODY


Read I Corinthians 11:27-30. For additional background also read Luke 22:2-20, Matthew 26:27-29, and Mark 14:22-25. Weakness and sickness result because we do not properly discern the Body of Christ. To "discern" is "to learn and understand something by examining, investigating, and discriminating."


We can fail to discern the Body of Christ in three ways:


THE MEANING OF THE BLOOD AND FLESH:


We fail to discern when we do not understand the meaning of the fruit of the vine and the bread which are symbolic of His blood and flesh. This is what happened when Jesus first gave this teaching in John 6:66 and many turned back from following Him. They did not understand the spiritual meaning of what He was teaching. While many discern the blood for remission of sins, they often do not understand the true meaning of the body. The body was for healing, so we could eat of it and be healed. (See John 6:48-58 and Luke 6:48-51.)


DIVISION IN THE BODY:

 

Sometimes we fail to discern our brothers and sisters who are part of the Body of Christ and divisions occur in the church. We eat and drink unworthily if we do not properly discern (really understand) our union with our brothers and sisters in the Lord. Paul explains in I Corinthians 3:1-13 that carnal Christians involved in division cannot eat the meat (flesh, body) of the Word because of their carnality.


EATING UNWORTHILY:

 

We eat unworthily when we take communion with an unexamined life. Weakness and sickness result. This is why Paul says to examine yourself spiritually and repent before taking Communion.


THE EVIL SPIRIT IS NOT CAST OUT


Some do not receive healing because their sickness is the work of an evil spirit which must be cast out. They need more than a prayer for healing. In conditions caused by an evil spirit, the Bible records that the enemy was cast out in order for healing to occur.


VIOLATION OF NATURAL LAWS


The same God that said "I am the Lord that healeth thee" also gave many natural laws of health and cleanliness to His people. Some people do not receive healing because they violate these natural laws. For example, a person may continue to drink alcohol and wonder why they are not healed of their liver condition. They may continue to smoke cigarettes and wonder why God does not heal their lung cancer.


APPOINTED TIME TO DIE


The Bible teaches that there is an appointed time to die (Ecclesiastes 3:2 and Hebrews 9:27). Even the great prophet Elisha, who did many miracles of healing and deliverance, became "sick with the sickness whereof he would die" (II Kings 13:14). You will learn how to deal with this variable when you learn to minister to the terminally ill as part of the instructions on ministering healing in Chapter Eighteen.


A FINAL REMINDER


We opened this lesson with several questions:

 

What variables affect healing? Why don't more people get healed? Why are some healed while others are not? Why are very shallow and worldly Christians sometimes healed while more sincere and dedicated people have not yet received healing?


The variables you studied in this lesson are just some of the factors that can affect healing and deliverance. Always remember, however. . .

 

The secret things belong unto the Lord our God; but those things which are revealed belong unto us and to our children for ever, that we may do all the words of this law. (Deuteronomy 29:29)


Faith requires just that: Faith. If you have all the answers, you do not need faith. God only asks that you act in faith upon His word, not provide answers.


In closing, here is an important statement regarding the variables of healing. It was made by a famous minister who ministered for many years in healing and deliverance:

 

"I, for one, will preach all the Gospel if I never see another man saved or healed as long as I live. I am determined to base my doctrines upon the immutable Word of God, not upon phenomena (experience)."


                                                                                                -F.F. Bosworth






















SELF-TEST


1. Write the Key Verse from memory.


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2. Define "variable."


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3. Discuss some of the traditions of man that affect healing.


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4. Discuss some variables that affect healing.


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(Answers to tests are provided at the conclusion of the final chapter in this manual.)



FOR FURTHER STUDY


1. When you pray the model prayer given by Jesus (also known as "The Lord's Prayer"), it includes appeals for healing:


"Our Father which art in Heaven": When you appeal to Our Father, you are appealing on the basis of all His name means, which includes "The Lord thy physician."


"Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in Heaven": There is no sickness or sin in Heaven. We are to do God's will on earth as it is done in Heaven, so we should fight sickness as well as sin.


"Give Us this day our daily bread": Jesus said the bread belongs to the children (believers). Physical healing is part of the children's bread (Matthew 15:21-28).


"Forgive us our trespasses as we forgive others": This passage speaks of spiritual healing.


"Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil": Sickness should be resisted as you would temptation.


2. You have learned that God is not the source of suffering but that He can use it to accomplish His purposes. Study the following examples which illustrate this:


            -The plagues of Egypt:                                               Exodus 7-11

            -Leprosy of Miriam:                                                   Numbers 12:10

            -Illness of King Jehoram:                                           II Chronicles 21:18

            -Leprosy of Gehazi:                                                    II Kings 5:27

            -Death of David's child:                                             II Samuel 12:18

            -Death of Eli's sons:                                                   I Samuel 2:34

            -The suffering of Job:                                                 Book of Job

            -Undeserved misfortunes of Joseph:                          Genesis 45:5-7

            -Crucifixion of Jesus:                                     Mark 14:35-36 and Romans 5:6-12

            -Imprisonment of Paul:                                               Philippians 1:12,19

            -Paul's thorn in the flesh:                                            II Corinthians 12:7


3. Learn more about the Biblical concern with wholeness:


-While men wanted only healing, Jesus wanted to deal with the whole man. He said to the lame man at Bethesda, "Wilt thou be made whole"? (John 5:6)


-Jesus came to minister to those who were not whole--the broken, sick, oppressed. The whole do not need a physician: Matthew 9:12; Mark 2:17; Luke 5:31


-Jesus was the source of wholeness: Acts 9:34; John 5:15


-As many as touched Jesus were made perfectly whole: Matthew 9:21-22; 14:36; Mark 5:28-34


-Jesus made whole, a servant who was on his death bed: Luke 7:10


-He made the lame whole: John 5:9


-The disciples, through the power of God, made the lame whole: Acts 9:34


-Jesus made the maimed whole: Matthew 5:31


-He restored hands whole: Matthew 12:13; Mark 3:5; Luke 6:10


-He made people whole of whatever disease they had: John 5:6


-They were made completely whole: John 7:23


-Jesus credited the faith of the people as an active part in their being made whole. "Thy faith hath made thee whole": Matthew 9:22; Mark 5:34; 10:52; Luke 8:48-50; 17:19
























CHAPTER EIGHTEEN


"AS YOU GO, HEAL"


OBJECTIVES:


Upon completion of this chapter you will be able to:


-Write the Key Verse from memory.

-Discuss preliminary preparations for the healing ministry.

-Summarize guidelines for ministering healing.

-Discuss follow-up care for those who were healed.

-Discuss follow-up care for those who were not healed.


KEY VERSES:

 

And as ye go, preach, saying The Kingdom of Heaven is at hand.

 

Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers; raise the dead, cast out devils: freely ye have received, freely give. (Matthew 10:7-8)


INTRODUCTION


You have learned that healing and deliverance are the Kingdom of God in action. In this lesson you will learn how to minister healing. In the next lesson you will learn how to minister deliverance.


PRELIMINARY PREPARATIONS


There are some important preparations before you begin to minister healing. These include preparing yourself, as the channel of God's healing power, and the person to whom you are to minister healing.


PREPARING YOURSELF:


Faith comes by hearing the Word of God about healing. To increase your own faith, study everything in the Bible on healing. Read the New Testament through with a new attitude. Whatever Jesus told His followers to do, you begin to do. Whatever He said He would do, expect Him to do it.


If He said you can heal the sick through His power, then expect to see them healed. If He said to cast out demons, then do it in His name and expect them to obey you. Disregard all the teaching of man and personal experiences you have ever had. Accept that the New Testament means exactly what it says. Accept it as true and act accordingly. You are an ambassador for Christ (II Corinthians 5:20). An ambassador never doubts that the country he represents will back up its word.


Fast and pray before you minister. See the example of Paul in Acts 28:8. Since power and authority to heal come from God, it is well to be in touch! Some demonic afflictions will be healed only by prayer and fasting. Isaiah 58 teaches that God honors a fast which focuses on ministering to the needs of others.


Begin to minister to the sick even though you do not understand everything about divine healing, just as you started to witness after being saved although in reality you had a lot to learn about the Christian life. Begin to minister on the basis of what you know about healing. As you walk in the light you have been given, you will receive more light. Adopt the attitude that there are no hopeless situations. There are only people who have become hopeless about them.


PRELIMINARY PREPARATION IN OTHERS:


If you encourage the sick to be prayed for without proper instruction, it is like encouraging the unsaved to accept Jesus as Savior without knowing who He is, recognizing their sin, and their need for salvation.


Sometimes, God heals without such instruction. But remember: In ministering healing, you want to properly use every channel prescribed by God's Word to see the work done. Faith is one channel for God's healing power and it comes by hearing God's Word, so instruction is important. Jesus combined preaching and teaching with healing and instructed His followers to do so also.


Faith comes by hearing the Word of God about healing. Preach it based on what God says, not on tradition or experience. Faith is not built by giving testimonies alone. Testimonies verify the Word and encourage faith, but the Bible states for sure that faith comes by hearing God's Word. (Even though a deaf person cannot hear a sermon in the natural, the deaf spirit can hear it.) People need to know what God's Word says about the source of healing, the source and causes of sickness, promises of healing, and Biblical guidelines for receiving and maintaining health.


In a healing service for believers, fasting and prayer by the sick can be helpful. This is not required for healing, but remember--we want to use every Biblical channel available. God stresses our asking and Isaiah 58:6-8 stresses the importance of fasting and prayer as related to health.




THE TIME OF MINISTRY


Here are some suggestions for the time of ministry to the sick. Remember that these are just general guidelines. You must always be open to different directions from the Holy Spirit. Some of these suggestions are applicable only to individual ministry, while others may be used for ministering to large groups:


CREATE AN ENVIRONMENT OF FAITH:


Create an environment of faith. You already started to do this when you ministered the Word on healing, but you may also need to take additional steps to create an environment of faith. Surround the sick with people of faith and confidence. Let them hear testimonies of those who have been healed. Remember that unbelief hindered even the ministry of Jesus in Nazareth.


An atmosphere of faith is one of worship and praise. We enter God's presence (where there is healing) through worship and praise. Healing can come through worship and praise--even without a healing prayer--because God inhabits the praises of His people. When we praise, He is present to heal. Bring people to a point of decision regarding their healing, just as you do regarding salvation. Remember how Jesus asked the lame man, "Wilt thou be made whole?" (John 5:6).


Ask the person to demonstrate their desire for healing. In a crowd you might ask them to stand, come to the front, raise their hand, or place their hand on the affected part of their body. This helps them show their desire to be healed. It is an act of faith for them, while it also helps you identify those who need ministry.


PRAY FOR DISCERNMENT:


Pray for wisdom and discernment before you to minister healing. Share any divine wisdom He gives you. God may reveal to you:

 

A Word Of Knowledge: A word of knowledge provides specific facts about a person or condition so you will know how to pray. A word of knowledge can include a deep sense of knowing or an impression in your spirit, thoughts, words, or feelings. The Word of knowledge may reveal what the sickness is or why the person has the condition.

 

A Scripture Verse: God may give you a "Rhema" (specific) Word of God for that situation, sickness, person, or group.

 

A Vision: These are pictures in the mind's eye pertaining to the one to whom you are ministering.


 

Words Of Faith: These are special words of encouragement and faith specifically for that individual.

 

A Special Anointing: A sudden infusion of power, perhaps felt as a tingling, heat, or supernatural confidence. Sometimes a special anointing comes, and if it does, flow with it. But do not wait for a special anointing to pray for the sick. You are to follow the instructions of Jesus whether you feel it or not.

 

A Special Act Of Faith: Sometimes God will lead you to tell the person to perform a special act of faith which will result in healing.


CONDUCT AN INTERVIEW: (Optional)


If you are dealing individually with a person, you may want to conduct a brief interview. God may give you specific words of wisdom about an illness and you will not need to interview. But if God does not supernaturally reveal the illness to you, do not hesitate to use the interview.


An interview is not required to minister healing, but it helps you gain information so you can pray specifically. It also helps you determine if a person needs further instruction before you pray. Jesus used the interview. He asked people what they wanted, inquired concerning their faith, and dealt with negative forces of unbelief before ministering to them.

    

Ask the person, "What is the problem?" Jesus asked a similar question to many who came to him for healing. Verbalizing the request for prayer is important for the sick. The sick are told to call for the elders to minister healing. When the Bible gives a directive, it is for a reason. The asking is an act of faith that sets in motion the healing processes (James 5:14-15).


(The exception to this, of course, is when a person cannot make a request. For example, the dead child Jesus raised. But even then, her parents requested Him to minister healing.)


Ask for a specific statement. If a request is too general, you will not know what to pray for and the affected person may not recognize healing when it comes. You need only brief facts: "I have cancer of the stomach." You do not need a complete medical history. Do not try to analyze the information you are given. Your function is to pray, not provide advice. Some unique cases may require privacy and more time for counseling with a trained counselor. Have counselors available for this purpose.


Ask the person who is to be prayed for, "Do you believe Jesus can heal?" If they answer positively, then ask, "Do you believe Jesus will do it now?" If the answer is "no" to either of these questions, further instruction from God's Word is needed.


When you minister to a large crowd, you will not be able to talk to each person. God may reveal specific illnesses of people in the audience or may lead you to pray mass prayers for certain illnesses, such as deafness, blindness, etc. Sometimes you may feel led to pray a general healing prayer or to have believers in the audience minister individually to those who are sick.


It is best to teach other believers how to minister rather than doing all the ministering yourself. The commission of Jesus was that these signs would follow THEM that believe, not "him". The work of the ministry was to be done by the whole Body, not just one or two lone believers.


DETERMINE THE PROBLEM:


Use the information from the interview and the wisdom God gives you to determine if the problem is in the:


Spiritual Realm: These are problems related to sin and they require a ministry of spiritual healing (salvation, repentance and forgiveness of sin).


If there is a relationship between sin and sickness (and we have seen there is), then there is a relationship between forgiveness and healing. Many are healed physically when they ask forgiveness for sin.


Do not be too quick to attribute sickness to sin. Remember that you learned all sickness is not the result of individual sin. If there is sin, it is the responsibility of the Holy Spirit to make it known since one of His purposes is to convict and correct.


Physical Realm: This is bodily sickness, injury, or disease. Pray for physical healing.


Emotional Realm: These include problems like anxiety, fear, anger, bitterness, resentment, guilt, doubt, failure, jealousy, selfishness, confusion, frustration, unforgiveness, and emotional effects of past problems. These people need healing in the emotional realm. This is often called "inner healing," but the term has been abused by some people. It is not necessary to go back to rehearse all the facts and experience the original emotions. It is not necessary to spend weeks, months, or years to recover from such traumas. If you do this, you are trying to heal the old person instead of helping them become a new creation in Christ.


Problems in the emotional realm are often related to the social realm of a person's life. They affect and result from family and social relationships. Healing comes through identifying the problem, asking forgiveness, and forgiving the others involved.


The greatest barrier to emotional healing is usually forgiveness, so emotional healing includes the healing of social relationships. We are called to be ministers of reconciliation (II Corinthians 5:18-21). People need to be reconciled both with God and man, and this is where emotional, mental, or inner healing comes. All are similar titles for the same type of healing.


You may need to teach the person about forgiveness. Forgiveness is not:

 

-Justifying someone else's wrongs which they have done to you. (For example, saying, "They were under a lot of pressure.")


            -Denying you were hurt in the first place.


            -Accepting with resignation what was done to you.


            -Waiting for time to heal the hurt. (It doesn't).


True forgiveness comes by:


(1) Recognizing what was done to you was wrong, the result of sinful men in a sinful world. It is not necessary to go back and relive the event mentally, but neither can you deal with it by denying it. Acknowledge what happened and how it affected you.


(2) Confessing the hurt to God and asking Him to heal you of the harmful emotions. You may not ever forget the fact of the incident but what you need is healing for the wrong emotions relating to it.


(3) Asking God to help you forgive others involved, then forgiving them even as Christ forgives you. Recognize that God extends forgiveness to you as you forgive others: "Forgive us our trespasses AS we forgive those who trespass against us." The person may also need to forgive themselves (guilt over their own wrongdoing) and will definitely need to pray for emotional healing. Here is how to forgive yourself:

 

-Acknowledge the sin causing guilt and sinful emotions, confess it to God, and repent. Ask Him to forgive your sin and heal your emotions.

 

-Recognize when God forgives, He forgets (He casts our sins as far as east from west).

 

-Claim I John 1:8-9 and Romans 8:1.

 

-By an act of your own will, release yourself from condemnation. Control future thought patterns by casting down vain imaginations and forgetting those things behind.


Mental Realm: These are problems stemming from negative thinking, attacks of Satan on the mind, mental retardation, etc. Pray for healing.


Demonic Realm: These are conditions resulting from direct demonic activity such as demon possession. You will learn how to deal with these in the next lesson on ministering deliverance.


Always remember that problems in one realm affect the whole person. As you minister, deal with the whole man as Jesus did, not just the sickness. Man is body, soul, spirit. Wholeness implies dealing with all of these.


PRAY THE HEALING PRAYER:


After you determine the condition, you will normally pray the healing prayer. But sometimes, do not be surprised if the Lord directs you not to pray or to delay prayer. For example, through an interview you may discover the person does not want healing because they will lose a disability pension. (This actually happened in one healing service!)


The Lord may also direct you to delay prayer for physical healing until further instruction is given or the person deals with a sin problem. When you do pray, pray a prayer of faith which focuses on the specific problem. Remember that you do not have to persuade God to heal by the length or loudness of your prayer. Just as salvation is already available, the same is true of healing. Just as salvation is based on the condition of faith, so is healing. God wants to heal, just as He wants to save.


Although the power of God is sometimes present in a special way for healing (Luke 5:17), you can still pray for healing without a special anointing because Jesus commanded you to do it just as He told you to spread the Gospel.


The key to answered prayer is praying according to God's will. Do not pray "If it is God's will." Jesus never prayed "heal if it is your will." Pray a positive prayer for God's "will to be done as it is in Heaven" or "according to Thy will." This still acknowledges the sovereignty of God.


When possible, use other believers to minister with you. There is multiplication of spiritual power when more people are praying (see Matthew 18:19). Body ministry also discourages individuals who experience success in healing gifts and those who receive healing from giving glory to self or man. Each member of the Body of Christ has at least one spiritual gift. The most effective ministry is when. . .

 

Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God's grace in it's various forms.

            (I Peter 4:10, New International Version)


Your healing prayer may be one of:

 

            -Petition:                                 Mark 7:32-35

            -Command:                             Luke 4:38-39; Mark 7:32-35; John 5:8; Acts 3:6; 9:40

            -Intercession:                          Exodus 32

            -Rebuke And Casting Out:     Mark 9:25.


Your prayer may also involve instructions to do specific acts, as the Lord directs (see John 9:1-7). (Note: Never tell people to stop taking medication. Let God lead them in this area.) Always pray in the name of Jesus. Also, remember that it is not lack of faith to pray more than once. (Review what Jesus taught about persevering prayer.)


PRAISE GOD FOR THE ANSWER:


Follow prayer with praise to God for healing. Remember that in the case of the ten lepers whom Jesus ministered to, all were healed but only the one who returned to praise was made whole. Praise God by faith and not by sight. You have done what God's Word said to do.


Believe He has done what He said He would do. Thank Him for it. Jesus thanked God for hearing His prayer before Lazarus ever came out from the tomb.


FOLLOW UP MINISTRY


It is important that those who are healed receive follow-up ministry. Jesus gave follow-up instructions to those who experienced healing and deliverance.


He spoke to the man who had been healed of leprosy:

 

And He charged him to tell no man: but go, and shew thyself to the priest, and offer for thy cleansing, according as Moses commanded, for a testimony unto them. (Luke 5:14)


He told a sinful woman who had been healed:

 

Return to thine own house and shew how great things God hath done unto thee. . . (Luke 8:39)


He told the man at the pool of Bethesda:

 

. . . Behold, thou art made whole: sin no more, lest a worse thing come unto thee. (John 5:14)


To the woman caught in adultery He said:

 

. . . Neither do I condemn thee; go, and sin no more. (John 8:11).


If you are ministering individually to a person, you may want to give follow-up instructions yourself. If you are ministering in a mass crusade, provide counseling after the service or the following morning. If you are ministering in a local church, ask the pastor to provide follow-up care for those who are healed.


Follow-up instruction should deal with:


            -What to do to remain healed.

            -What to do if they were not healed.


WHAT TO DO TO REMAIN HEALED:


Teach those who have been healed to. . .


Recognize The Attacks Of Satan:


Just as Satan tempts every convert who is saved, He will tempt every person who is healed. Just as you can lose spiritual victory, you can lose physical victory. Whatever you trust God for in your spiritual walk, you will be tested in that area. Satan will tempt you by:


-Symptoms: Healing is sometimes gradual. All of your symptoms may not be gone immediately. Your symptoms may even get worse. You may have a fever, but this can be the body processes fighting off the infection as part of the healing process. Walk with your spiritual senses, not natural senses. Do not go around volunteering information on your symptoms, should they return. On the other hand, do not lie about them. If asked, answer "Yes, I have the symptoms of________, but by His stripes I am healed." Focus your attention on the things unseen instead of symptoms. Symptoms can distract you from the Word of God, His presence, promises, and power. Do not speak negative words that glorify Satan's ability to attack your body. Which encourages you most--lack of symptoms or God's Word that states He is your healer? Which is your focus?


-Getting You To Look At Others: Pointing to those who thought they were healed, but are now sick again. Do you look at those who claimed they were saved but are now living in sin and use such an example to deny the reality of salvation?


-Fear: Fearful that your illness will return.


-Negative People Around You: Those filled with unbelief who plant doubt in your mind.


Resist The Attacks Of Satan:


Keep in an atmosphere of faith by continuing to study God's Word on healing. Praise God for your healing. Keep in contact with your Healer by prayer. Testify about your healing to others, giving glory to God. One way to overcome Satan is by the Word of your testimony. Resist the attacks of Satan with the "Rhema" Word of God by quoting specific verses about healing. Do not waver in your belief, as a man who wavers will not receive from God (James 1:6-8). Contend (wrestle) earnestly in the faith for your healing (Romans 10:9).


Surround yourself with a positive environment of faith, those who will continue to praise God with you for healing and help you resist the attacks of the enemy. Become part of a Church fellowship.


You resist the attacks of Satan when you use your spiritual authority which includes:


            -The Word of God.

            -The blood of Jesus.

            -The word of your own testimony.

            -Authority to bind and loose.

            -Prayer and praise.

            -Weapons of warfare listed in Ephesians 6:10-18.

            -The authority and power of the Holy Spirit.


(If you have not experienced the baptism of the Holy Spirit you should seek it. The Holy Spirit provides power which helps you maintain your healing. As you will learn in the next lesson, this is particularly important in cases of deliverance from demonic activity.)


Change Your Life Style:


A return to sinful practices can mean a return of the sickness (John 8:11). Walk in obedience to God and His Word. Willful sin can result in losing healing (John 5:14). A return to unhealthy practices can also make sickness return. Unhealthy practices are actually sin, for you are defiling God's temple.


Follow Biblical Guidelines For Health And Healing:


The Bible provides many guidelines for healthful living. Obtain the Harvestime course entitled “Battle For The Body” to study these in detail.


Return For Medical Verification:


If you have been under medical care, return to your doctor for verification of your healing. Under Old Testament law, priests were like physicians. They diagnosed illnesses and pronounced healings. Jesus told the leper who He healed:

 

. . . go, and shew thyself to the priest, and offer for thy cleansing, according as Moses commanded, for a testimony unto them. (Luke 5:14)


WHAT TO DO IF THEY WERE NOT HEALED:


Do not let people leave discouraged or guilty because they did not get healed. Avoid the temptation of inventing a reason for their lack of healing (unless God should specifically reveal it). Before they leave the service, caution them that just because they do not see visible results does not mean they are not healed. Healing begins in the spirit. There are delayed healings, i.e., that of the barrenness of Abraham and Sara, even though the Word was given years before.


There is also timing involved. Consider the lame man at the temple gate in Acts 5. Jesus walked through the temple gates many times, yet we are told a crippled man had been there for years. He was later healed by Peter and John (Acts 5:15-16). There was also a set timing in the cases of Job and Lazarus.


You may want to assign someone to continue to work with the sick person in these follow-up steps:


1. Continue to persevere in prayer for healing: Jesus taught persevering prayer. He did not discourage it. Call for the elders of the Church to pray over you.


2. Continue to build your faith: You can do this through study of the "Rhema" Word of God on healing.


3. Continue to confess your sins: Confess your sins on a daily basis so they will not aggravate your physical condition. Live and walk in obedience to the Word of God.


4. Use your spiritual power: All believers possess the basics for healing and deliverance. Begin to use them. They are:


            -The Word of God.

            -The blood of Jesus.

            -The word of your own testimony.

            -Authority to bind and loose.

            -Prayer and praise.

            -Weapons of warfare listed in Ephesians 6:10-18.

            -The authority and power of the Holy Spirit.


5. Where applicable, change your lifestyle: Eliminate sinful and unhealthy practices. Healing often comes when you bring your lifestyle in harmony and obedience with God's Word.


6. Follow Scriptural directives for life and health.


7. Create an atmosphere of faith: Surround yourself with an atmosphere of faith by becoming part of a fellowship of believers.


8. Commit yourself to total trust in God: Total trust means that in living or dying, sickness or health, you know you are in His hands: John 10:29; Job 13:15; 19:26


9. React positively to suffering: While you are waiting for total healing, react to your suffering in such a way that others will be affected in a positive way. You can do this by:


            -Giving thanks: I Thessalonians 5:16-18.


            -Letting God perfect His strength in weakness: II Corinthians 12:9-10

 

-Demonstrating patience while you wait. People wait in doctors offices for the results of medical tests. We wait on medicine to work. Why can't we wait on God? Those with patience inherit the promises: Hebrews 6:12; 12:2-3; James 1:2-4; 5:10-11; Psalms 27:14; 37:34; Isaiah 40:31; Romans 5:3-5

 

-Recognizing that no suffering is without purpose. Study the Biblical record of those who suffered which documents this.


10. Claim the promises of God: Even if you feel God has forsaken you, continue to claim these promises and pray these prayers: Psalms 5:1-3; 6:2-9; 13:1-6; 22:19; 27:7; 31:21-22; 42:9-11; 54:1-2; 55:1-2; 70:1; 71:9-21; 86:6-7; 94:19; 102:1-7; II Corinthians 4:17-18


11. Give and you will receive: The Bible teaches a key principle in God's Kingdom is that we receive when we give. If you are a believer, begin to minister God's healing power to others. As you give, you will receive.






















SELF-TEST


1. Write the Key Verses from memory.


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2. Discuss preliminary preparations for the healing ministry.


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3. Summarize guidelines for ministering healing.


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4. Discuss follow-up care for those who were healed.


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5. Discuss follow-up care for those who were not healed.


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(Answers to tests are provided at the conclusion of the final chapter in this manual.)



FOR FURTHER STUDY


1. Study these examples of Jesus interviewing the sick prior to ministering healing:


            -Mark 5:1-20:             Jesus questions the demonized man.

            -Mark 8:22-26:                       Questioning of the blind man.

            -Mark 9:14-27:                       Interview about the boy with an evil spirit.

            -Mark 10:46-52:                     Questioning of blind Bartimaeus.


2. Here is some follow-up care for the minister of healing:


Leave the results to God. Do not worry about what appears to be failure. How can you be a failure when it is God who heals? You do not take credit for the visible results of divine healing, do you? Why take blame when there are no visible results?


We are all learning about God's healing power together. You do not stop trying to live the Christian life because you see failures around you. Do not stop ministering healing because of what appears to be failure. The answer to fear of failure is not to minimize expectancy, but to maximize ministry.


Unless God reveals the reason why there are no visible results, leave unanswered questions with the Lord (Deuteronomy 29:29). Do not try to invent reasons or form judgments based on imperfect human knowledge and reasoning. Remember that man’s first sin involved wanting to be as God and know all things. Accept the mysteries of God as part of life.


Doctors act with the best resources at hand. Sometimes the patient does not recover, but physicians do not give up the practice of medicine if a patient dies. Can't we act in the same confidence with the spiritual resources provided by the Lord--continue to use them and develop in the healing ministry despite apparent failures?


Always remember: Visible results are wonderful, but eternal things are those which are invisible. This is why Jesus said to His disciples when they were focusing on the results of their preaching and healing:

 

. . . Do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to you; but rejoice that your names are written in Heaven. (Luke 10:20)


3. Here is how to develop a team of workers to minister healing with you:


-Use the lessons in this section and God's Word to instruct and build faith.

-Select a team of workers you have taught.

-Spend time fasting and praying together.


-Determine who will do what in the healing service so team members can minister in harmony one with another. One person should coordinate the service in order to prevent confusion.


-Use team members to help equip others for the healing ministry. Do not hold healing services as much as equipping services, where others can learn how to use the power God has made available to all of the Body of Christ.


4. Use this outline to help you minister to people who are terminally ill:


I.         There is sickness unto death: In John 11:4 Jesus said the sickness of Lazarus was not one             unto death. This means there are sicknesses unto death.


II.        There are two types of natural death:


            A.        Premature death: Turned to destruction of flesh that the spirit be saved.

            B.        Appointed death: Because of the natural processes of life (Hebrews 9:27;                         Ecclesiastes 3:2; II Kings 13:14; Isaiah 38; II Kings 20).


III.       The goal of healing is not immortality:


            A.        Even those Jesus raised from the dead eventually died.


            B.        Some people are supernaturally kept from the effects of old age like Moses was.                         Others follow the natural way of aging, as Joshua did.


            C.        The Bible does not promise immortality in this world as part of the healing                         covenant. Do not be disturbed when Christians who believe and have ministered                         divine healing die from sickness. This happened to Elisha, yet years later his                         bones had power to raise a dead man. This confirms he could not have died                         because of lack of faith!


IV.      When ministering to the terminally ill seek God for wisdom: Is it the person's appointed             time to die?


            A.        If God reveals it is the person's appointed time, then help them prepare as Jesus                         did the thief on the cross:


                        l.         Be certain they know Jesus as their Savior.

 

                        2.         If they are a believer, be sure there is no unconfessed sin.


                        3.         Encourage them to set their business affairs in order.


                        4.         Encourage them to make restitution if there are problems between them                                     and another person.

 

5.Help them understand death comes to all. For the believer, death within the parameters of the eternal life we already have. We need to change our attitude about it. We are not to seek death, but we are not to place such an undue emphasis on the present life that we prefer it to the one to come. To be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord (II Corinthians 5:8). Death is an enemy, and it is the last enemy that will be destroyed (I Corinthians 15:26). The resurrection of Jesus was the "first fruits" to show that death is conquered but it is not yet destroyed. It is the terror of this enemy that is disarmed for the believer (I Corinthians 15:55).


                        6.         Help them understand that God is sovereign. He can still intervene                                     at any time to permit them to live longer.

 

7.Remind them that death is the ultimate healing. There is no more pain or sickness. We enter God's presence whole. Sickness is like sin: We are saved from the penalty of sin (sickness) when we accept Jesus as Savior and Healer. We can be continually delivered from its power as believers, but only in the future when we go to be with the Lord are we saved from its presence. God has a way of using things Satan intends for evil and turning them to good. Death was the penalty for sin, and by the death of Christ came life. This is why death is swallowed up in victory. In death, God performs the ultimate healing.

 

8.Focus their attention on eternity and the resurrection. Use the following references: John 11:5-6; Job 1