The scripture gives us the great commission by which the Church strives as a whole to fulfill the call to extend the gospel of God to every corner of the world; each Christian under-girds the Church’s answer to the great commission according to the gift of Christ’s grace that abides within them.
What I wanted to do was to briefly address the option of the “internet” as a tool by which we can reach out to the world and some of the weaknesses when it is misused.
THE KNOWLEDGE OF GOD
God has equipped some brethren to be able to convey the truth that accords with godliness in written form: their work pierces and convicts the soul and strengthens the body of Christ. This work is, indeed, a pivotal part of our great commission now.
One of the greatest modern examples of our time came before the advent of the internet: A.W. Tozer spent years in prayer and careful personal study of God’s Word, and his writing are the kind of writings that are rich and full of the graces of God.
The key here is that Tozer’s writings were the overflow of his personal fellowship with Christ. He was not trying to publish 5 posts a week to attract more readers. He wrote of what he received from a lifetime spent drawing from the deep Wellspring.
Any brother or sister who feels called to write online needs to take this lesson to heart: write what you’ve received from having come near to God yourself, not what you took from various places and pieced together.
FOR WORSHIP AND PRAISE
Christian history is rich with the hymns, psalms, and spiritual songs of Christians that lifted up glory to God with worship. The creative arts are a wonderful way in which the glory of God can be exalted by men and women who have spent time in the presence of God.
We have no less a great opportunity today with such a dynamic tool for evangelism as the internet; however, like writing of the knowledge of God, bring worship and glory to God through hymns, psalms, and spiritual songs takes time meditating with all of your heart, soul, mind, and strength upon the glory of God. It requires honing your ability to compose and create.
It is interesting that very few Christians, however, opt for this ministry; I sometimes wonder if it is because it is easier to write out a public rant-and-rave that will attract 500 footprints a day, but bring no acceptable honor to God, than it is to labor in the composition of “bringing a new song to God” (Psalm 96:1)?
We see evangelism in a very narrow perspective today: unfortunately the body of Christ appears to be very dysfunctional right now as each member wants everyone to be like them. Evangelists want everyone to be evangelists, and preachers want everyone to be preachers. The list goes on and on.
While we are not all evangelists, we all under-gird that commission according to the gift of Christ’s grace that we’ve each been given.
Don’t let anyone try and mold you into their image; seek the face of God and learn from Him how He wants you to use the internet.
People worry that if we encourage people to stop trying to fashion themselves in the image of other great men of God that the body will run into heresy; but it is heresy to fashion ourselves in the image of anyone but God!
If you have truly come before the glory of God and spent time in His presence, then your actions will be true to sound doctrine that accords with godliness; your actions will be true to the true grace and holiness that God has called us in and to.
Seek the face of God and be faithful with what you have received: evangelize!
PREACHING AND TEACHING
This problem of body-image jealousy in the Church is very severe: what I mean by that is that we see video sermons from men like Leonard Ravenhill or David Wilkerson and immediately want to copy their work. So we have young preachers who try to produce 4 or 5 sermons a week so they can have “an impact”, but what they mean is that they want to be like these men.
I’ve been prompted by people to produce more video-sermons, and by the grace of God I will record what He wills, but let me encourage my brothers to be careful about posting any content because you’ve been asked to post; dig into your quiet prayer closets, brothers, it is the only way that we will have a fighting chance at accomplishing what we want to accomplish!
ENCOURAGEMENTS AND EXHORTATIONS
It’s important for us as Christians to know the gift of Christ’s grace that abides in us so that we can minister according to the equipping of the Holy Spirit; far too often I witness people trying to go out and be what they are not called to be, or people letting other men or women dictate to them how they ought to function in the Body of Christ. It is God alone who places the body.
I know that I have been placed as a preacher and teacher of God’s Word, and have served in various ways as an evangelist; but I also know that the way I might work as an evangelist or preacher is different than other wonderfully gifted evangelists and preachers would work.
Let me encourage you not to spend your time measuring yourself according to how other people work; they may be fulfilling God’s work as He called them, but He may have called you in a different capacity.
I’ve met a number of Christians who feel gifted in the graces of hospitality, but yet still feel guilty because they are not preaching on a street corner. What it is high-time for the Church to understand is that the body needs the supply of every joint; we are suffering because people are not fulfilling the vocation God has given them!
I hope you don’t hear me giving an excuse for you not to reach out to your neighbor with the gospel just because you don’t feel called as an “evangelist”: every Christian has the calling and gifting to reach out to those who are in their immediate sphere of influence (work, family, friends, and residence), but not every Christian has the gift to travel to a foreign country to reach the lost souls abroad, or to stand before a rebellious Church and rebuke their sins; yet every function is necessary.
That is why I wanted to address this in a way that brought the included the internet because I believer there are vast ways we can be using the internet, not as a replacement, but as a supplement to our ministry in various ways.
Brethren, may you all be blessed in the grace and peace of Christ, and do not grow weary in fulfilling your call.
Fight the good fight.