The other day, I missed church. So I decided that I wanted to still connect with God on a church-like level, so I turned to YouTube. I searched "sermons by great preachers", and clicked on a random one. Well, it was a very good sermon and it challenged me in many ways, so I thought I would share it with you guys. Here is the video if you want to watch it. But, if you don't want to I'll tell you the jist of it down below.
A sum of Jeff Durbin's words:
Romans 1:8, "You're faith is being proclaimed throughout the whole world." Keep in mind, this is right after the resurrection. Christian faith was huge, and vastly talked about, but today, this is not the always the story. The church is growing vastly in countries where our faith is persecuted, but in countries where our faith is accepted, the church is not growing as much. America is one of those countries that isn't growing in the church. Why is that? What happened? This is a problem. We are creating a problem.
In Luke 14, Jesus has a thousand or more following him. He turns to his followers and says, "If you want to be my disciple, you must hate everyone else by comparison - your father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters - yes, even your own life. Otherwise, you cannot be my disciple. And if you don't carry your own cross and follow me, you cannot be my disciple." (Luke 14:26-27). Jesus was being bold. He was pretty much telling everyone around Him to come die. Come die and rise again or don't come at all. This caused everyone but the 12 disciples to turn away.
ALL BUT 12 PEOPEL TURNED AWAY! I know you are thinking, "Wow. Why would He do that? Doesn't he want all of them to follow Him? Doesn't that mean that His ministry is growing?" Well, the thing is, Jesus didn't just want a lot of followers. He didn't just want church growth. He wants people who will grow in Him, people who are willing to risk everything, people who are willing to die for their faith in Him.
Jesus was bold, and that boldness is where our problem lies. We aren't BOLD enough. We sugar coat repentance and hell. We always take the gentle route for explaining our faith because we are afraid of hurting people's feelings, but this isn't what Jesus did. This isn't what the disciples did. Look at Paul for example. In acts, it says that people were trying to kill Paul because of his teachings, but he kept teaching anyways. He didn't start being gentle with his words. He continued to be bold. He was continuing to risk everything to tell as many people as he could about God!
When Peter was arrested, he asked "What is the charge you have against Christians?"
They replied, "You are filling Jerusalem with your teachings!"
"Your faith is being proclaimed throughout the whole world." Romans 1:8. The disciple's boldness was making the church grow, really grow. They were risking everything including their lives, and they were impacting people. So why do we think that we can get away without being bold? We are called to be bold, "baptizing all nations in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit." (Matthew 28:19-20) ALL NATIONS, and America doesn't even rank. We need to be bold.
Jeff then talked about how he goes to the abortion facilities to preach, to evangelize. People always tell him, "No! That's a little too 'in your face'," and he always replies by saying, "If we don't go to the hard places, people don't hear the gospel!"
Our message isn't to just gain followers. It's to make disciples. The message is to repent, have faith, and be reconciled with God. We are not just sick in sin. We are dead in sin, and the only one who can help us is God. We have to be bold.
"Anyone can show up when you're happy. But the ones who stay by your side when your heart falls apart, they are your true friends."
I am Samantha, and my goal for this blog is to basically share my experiences as a teenager. Basically, I am a teen. I have many hopes and dreams, many fears and insecurities that I let hold me back. There is so much that goes on in my life. Sometimes it is a struggle, and that is what this blog is about.