Acts 8:5 – Then Philip went down to the city of Samaria, and preached Christ unto them.
I have served in the arena of five-fold ministry, at this writing, for 48 years. I have traveled extensively, ministered in a vast number of churches and locations for a broad array of different churches, denominations, and organizations. One of the things to which I have committed myself in those years is to be an observer; to look; to attempt to see what is happening in the light of God’s Word. I can tell you, and sadly so, that one of the great weaknesses within the body of Christ is its segmented, unattached, sometimes denominationally directed, sometimes ego-directed teaching of the Word and training of the body of Christ.
One of those arenas that stand out so vividly to me is the arena of evangelism. Ask most believers about evangelism, and they will tell you it’s about soul-winning, reaching the lost. Many will also use terms like revival, especially as it relates to revival meetings, or the ministry of an evangelist. A few might give much more focus to gifts of healings, deliverances, and working of miracles; the signs that should flow in the office of an evangelist. But with all this focus, with all this descriptive terminology, and with all the evangelistic nomenclature of the modern church, there still remains much disjointedness, and from that, a weakness in the work of evangelism within the church. And please note here, I am NOT writing in an attempt to focus on the ministry office of the evangelist, but rather on the broader church work of evangelism.
In the early church, there had been no opportunity for the body of Christ to have been instructed concerning the work of evangelism as part of the Kingdom function. But in today’s church, we have no excuses. The fact that we have accepted traditions of men above the Word of God is no excuse. The fact that we are doing things like we’ve always done them is no excuse. The twisted view that the evangelist, or the preacher, should be the one doing the work of evangelism is no excuse. We have the Scriptures in their completed form. We have a long-standing working arrangement with Holy Spirit Who should be accepted as the great Teacher in the church. We are without excuse.
So, what do we need? We need a church that knows how to carry the Gospel to the lost. The field is where the harvest is; not in the church building on Sunday. We need believers who yield to Holy Spirit and flow in His gifts and power on the street; not just in a meeting with a well-known itinerate minister. We need people of God who will boldly preach Christ, for when Christ is preached, the results will speak for themselves.
Manna for Today – Acts 8:4-40; 1 Corinthians 12:28-30; Acts 21:8