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Evangelism Jesus-Style | Greg Laurie on Lessons Learned

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie
The Truth Network Radio
February 2, 2024 3:00 am

Evangelism Jesus-Style | Greg Laurie on Lessons Learned

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie

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February 2, 2024 3:00 am

One of the key words here are Harvest Ministries and A NEW BEGINNING is just two letters: Go! In fulfilling the Great Commission, that may be the hardest step. Go. Get up and get started. Today, on A NEW BEGINNING, Pastor Greg Laurie helps kindle a fire within us . . . a fire that won’t let us remain silent. We’ll see sharing our faith is a joy and a privilege. We’re featuring a message Pastor Greg recently presented at The Bold For Jesus evangelism conference in Spokane, Washington.

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A New Beginning is the daily half-hour program hosted by Greg Laurie, pastor of Harvest Christian Fellowship in Southern California. For over 30 years, Pastor Greg and Harvest Ministries have endeavored to know God and make Him known through media and large-scale evangelism. This podcast is supported by the generosity of our Harvest Partners.

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You're listening to A New Beginning with Greg Laurie, a podcast supported by Harvest Partners. For more ways to deepen and challenge your spiritual walk, enroll in Pastor Greg's free online courses.

Sign up at harvest.org. Sharing the good news isn't just a good idea. It's a divine directive. Today, Pastor Greg Laurie quotes the words of Christ. Jesus says, Go into all the world and preach the gospel. Let me personalize that. Go into all of your world.

I like to call it Frangelism. It's an acronym. F, share it with your friends. R, share it with your relatives. A, share it with your associates.

N, share it with your neighbors. Everyone is called to do this. One of the key words here at Harvest Ministries and A New Beginning is just two letters, go. In fulfilling the Great Commission, that may be the hardest step. Go.

Get up and get started. Today on A New Beginning, Pastor Greg Laurie helps kindle a fire within us, a fire that won't let us remain silent. We'll see sharing our faith is a joy and a privilege.

We're featuring a message Pastor Greg recently presented at the Bold for Jesus Evangelism Conference in Spokane, Washington. People are bold for a lot of things today. You know, we're bold for whatever we're excited about.

We find a hamburger or we find a movie and we'll talk to people about it. We'll engage people in conversations about it. Others are bold for politics. Man, when that subject comes up, we fire up.

Others are bold for the environment. They drive a Prius. Too slow. Everyone who drives a Prius drives it too slow. Come on. How many of you own a Prius?

Drive faster. That's all I'm asking. Simple request. But all these things people are bold for. Others are bold for sinful lifestyles. But we're here to be bold for Jesus.

There's nothing more important than that. I want you to turn your Bible to John chapter four. John chapter four. Let's start with a word of prayer. Father, your word is true.

The world is lost. Jesus is the answer. And the primary way you have chosen to reach people is through people.

People like us. You want to speak through us as scripture says, he that wins souls is wise. So Lord, help us to be soul winners. Help us to be your tools. Help us to be bold for Jesus. Speak to us from your word. We ask now in Jesus' name.

Amen. How many of you saw the Jesus revolution movie? Wow. You know people have asked me was that movie all true? Is that really how it happened? Well in most movies of that kind you know sometimes time is compressed and two people become one person.

But the whole arc of the story is true. Someone asked me did you actually say to your wife before you married her if you ever get in the way of me and my relationship with Christ it's over. I said yeah I actually said that.

I can't believe I said that. I mean that is the worst line to use on a girl. Or maybe it's the best line because we've been married 50 years so it worked out pretty well right. But if you saw the film you have a sense of my life. I'll give you a couple details that are not in the film. So my mother a beautiful woman literally a dead ringer for Marilyn Monroe and she was married and divorced seven times. And she was a raging alcoholic. And one night she went to Long Beach California had a one night stand with some sailor and I was conceived. And I'm so thankful my mom carried me to term.

I could have been another abortion statistic. And I was born in 1952. That's a long time ago. You know when you sign forms and they ask when you're born and you scroll to your year.

I'm like scrolling, scrolling, scrolling, scrolling, scrolling. 1800. It's not that long ago.

A little forward. 1952. But I don't believe there's any illegitimate children. Illegitimate parents yes.

Illegitimate children no. God had a plan for my life. But because of the way I was raised. Because in many ways I had to be the parent in the relationship. My mom would get so drunk every night she would pass out. So I had to take care of her. I had to feed her.

I had to help her. And so I grew up really fast. I was very hard. I was very jaded.

Because every adult I knew was a disappointment at best. And so I started searching. And I made my own mistakes. Got into drinking and partying in high school. And then I got into drugs. And I was looking for answers.

And it almost became like a process of elimination. Okay it's not in drugs clearly. It's not in this party lifestyle.

It's not in the adult world that I am at least exposed to where is it. And so on my high school campus there was a group of very outspoken Christians that we call the Jesus Freaks. And I transferred over to this school.

It's called Newport Harbor High School in California. And my friends warned me. Greg be careful there's a lot of Jesus Freaks on this campus. And I famously said the last thing you'll ever see is Greg Laurie becoming a Jesus Freak.

Famous last words thankfully. And so I came across these Christians meeting on the front lawn singing their songs about God. And I sat down and I was kind of feeling sorry for them. I thought why would anybody believe this. This is so ridiculous. Look at the stupid smiles on their face. Look look at look.

They actually look pretty happy. And so I began to try a new thought on first-size. What if it's all true? And what if God can be known? And I immediately dismissed that there's no way because of my cynicism because of my childhood. But then I tried the thought on first-size again.

But what if it's true? And then a guy stood up to speak. His name was Lonnie Frisbee.

Beard, long hair. I thought whoa he's like Jesus you know. And I don't remember most of what he said. But I remember one statement when he said Jesus said you're either for me or against me. And that was like a lightning bolt from heaven.

Boom. It hit me on my heart. And that was the day I believed in Jesus. Sorry it didn't happen right before my baptism.

That was one of the things changed for the film. But it actually happened on my high school campus. And I began to go to church. And I began to hear the Word of God taught. And I began to grow spiritually. And the pastor, Pastor Chuck Smith played by Kelsey Grammer in the film said that we should go out and share our faith. So I'm two weeks old in the Lord. I've got a copy of a little booklet called The Four Spiritual Laws.

It was put up by Campus Crusade for Christ. I hadn't even memorized the contents of it yet. But I thought I should engage someone. So I saw this older woman about the age of my mom sitting on the beach.

And I thought I'll walk up to her. So I'm a 17 year old kid. I've got my hair hanging in my eyes.

Use your imagination. And my voice was shaking. You know when you get nervous and your voice starts shaking? Can I talk to you for a second about God and stuff?

She says sure. I sat down. And I just started to read it. The Four Spiritual Laws. Copyright 1958. Campus Crusade.

Law one. God loves you and has a wonderful plan for your life. And I'm reading through it. And I couldn't wait to be done because I thought this is not going well. I don't even know what I'm doing.

Why am I even doing this? I would look up at her periodically. She's just looking at me. I'm almost to the end of the little booklet. And there's a question in the booklet which is is there any good reason why you should not accept Jesus Christ right now? I realized oh that's a question.

So I looked up. She said no. No. Wait. Does that mean you want to accept Jesus Christ right now? She said yes.

I had not planned for success. So I said in the most reverent tone I could muster. Let's bow our head for a word of prayer. And she closes her eyes. I'm frantically flipping through this booklet.

What do I do now? And I found this simple prayer to lead a person in. And I let her in this prayer. And she opened her eyes and she said something just happened to me.

And I said wow something just happened to me too. I got a taste of being used by God. And so I've been preaching the gospel now for well 52 years. But it's my joy.

It's my passion. And I want to share some things I've learned about evangelism. And I want to show you how to do evangelism Jesus style.

The way the Lord himself did it. But first let me identify the who, where, why, when, and how of evangelism. Let's start with a who. Who is called to share the gospel?

Simple answer. Everyone. There's no exception. Jesus said in Matthew 28 go therefore and make disciples of all nations teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you baptizing them in the name of the Father Son and the Holy Spirit and lo I am with you even to the end of the age. By the way contextually when Jesus says lo I am with you to the end of the age it's actually speaking of how God will be with us in a special way when we share the gospel.

That's not to say he's not with you all the time because Christ said I'll never leave you or forsake you. But it is to say when you step forward and say Lord speak through me and tell others about Jesus he's saying I will be with you when you do that. So who is called to do it? Everyone.

In the original language the implication is it's a command. That's why we call it the great commission not the great suggestion. But for many the great commission has become the great omission. We're not doing it.

And let me say something that might seem controversial but I think it's true. To not share the gospel can actually be a sin. Let me explain the bible says to him that knows to do good it does not do it to him it is sin. Let's say I'm walking down the street and there's a house on fire. Someone says there's there's a child in that house. Now I hope at the very least I would call 911. Maybe I would be a hero and run in and try to save the child.

But if I took a picture to post on Instagram and kept walking that's irresponsible. And in the same way if I don't tell others about Jesus that can actually be a sin. So who's called to do it? All of us are called to do it. Pastor Greg Laurie will have the second half of his message in just a moment. Hey everybody I want to encourage you to join us for something we call Harvest at Home. It happens every Sunday at harvest.org and on our brand new app Harvest Plus which is available on your mobile tv devices. Download it now and you can watch Harvest at Home with Christians from around the world as we worship together and study God's word.

So again join us for Harvest at Home at harvest.org or on Harvest Plus. Well today Pastor Greg is pointing out we're all called to share the hope of Christ with the people around us. He continues his message now presented at a Spokane evangelism conference. Where are we called to do it? Answer everywhere everywhere. In Mark 16 we have another variation of the great commission where Jesus says go into all the world and preach the gospel.

Let me personalize that. Go into all of your world. I know the world's a big place so let's just talk about your world, your spirit of influence, your family, your neighborhood, your friends. I like to call it frangelism. Frangelism you say what does that mean only share the gospel with people named Fran.

Frangelism it's an acronym. F share with your friends. R share it with your relatives. A share it with your associates.

N share it with your neighbors. Everyone is called to do this. You know we think about maybe doing it as a ministry. One day I'd like to be a missionary. I would like to cross the sea for Christ. Hey why don't you start by crossing the street for Christ okay to start where you are. Number three why should we do this?

Why do it? Because God's primary way of reaching people is through people. In Romans 10 14 says how will they hear unless someone tells them. First Corinthians 1 21 says since in the wisdom of God the world through wisdom did not know God. Listen it pleased God through the foolishness of the message preached to save those who believe. So it's the verbal articulation of the gospel. Number four when are we to share the gospel? Answer all the time. Always be open to the leading of the Holy Spirit.

The Bible says be instant in season and out of season whereas another translation puts it be on duty at all times. So one day I was in the department store and I had to go to the restroom. Yes preachers use restrooms too. And I walked in and try not to visualize this I took a seat okay. So I'm in the stall and I hear there's someone in the stall next to me and I hear them clear their throat okay someone's next to me and then I hear this hi. First of all men don't like to talk to men in restrooms okay. We don't care what's going on with you girls when you say I'm going to the restroom who wants to go with me. If a guy sees another guy in the restroom say hey what's up let's get out of here right.

So I don't talk to people in restrooms. Hi he says. So in the most aggressive way I could respond I said hi. Like don't talk to me. Moment passes he says are you supposed to meet me here.

I said no. He said oh I thought what is going on with this guy. I said what what do you mean I'm thinking what am I doing I don't want to talk to this guy.

Who are you supposed to meet here what's going on. He says oh I was gonna do a drug buy. Oh I said I used to do drugs really.

Oh yeah but I found something much better. He said what. I said a personal relationship with God through Jesus Christ. Then I thought wait I can't share the gospel in a bathroom.

The Holy Spirit won't even come in this place. And this is what the guy says I tried that. Oh really. Yes I tried that. I said well did you ever go to church. He said yes I did. I said where did you go to church. He said a church called Harvest Christian Fellowship. I said do you know who I am. He said no. He said I'm Greg Laurie the pastor of Harvest Christian Fellowship. Moment of silence passes and he says oh my God. I said buddy God must really love you to send your pastor to you when you're trying to make a drug buy okay.

So you need to get right with God and I'm gonna I'm done with this bathroom of evangelism. I'll wait for you outside. So I stood outside. He was easy to spot.

He was the guilty looking guy. So we prayed and I was able to lead him in a recommitment of Christ all right. So when the Bible says be on duty at all times it takes on a whole new meaning. So how are we to share the gospel.

How. That's where Jesus comes in because not only is Jesus Christ God incarnate. Not only is Jesus Christ our savior. But Jesus Christ was the master communicator.

He shows us how to do it and I think a thing I would begin with is when you're engaging someone with the gospel the objective is to build a bridge not burn the bridge. And far too often we stop the conversation before it even begins. So engage a person.

Check this out. Everyone's favorite subject is themselves. People love to talk about themselves. So ask a person tell me about yourself.

Where are you from. Oh what do you do. Oh just ask them questions. Oh they're so happy to talk about themselves.

I mean think about what is the most popular form of photography in the world today. Selfies right. People love to talk about themselves. So you begin to build a bridge.

You begin to engage them. See here's the problem is we put people off so quickly starting with Christianese. Do you know what Christianese is.

It's our own cryptic language that only we understand. So we see a non-believer we say hey you Philistine come here. I have a question for you. Have you been washed in the blood. Have you been redeemed. Have you repented. Have you been justified.

And are you part of the body of Christ. You're freaking this person out. You just ask them if they've been washed in blood and are part of some body.

I mean here's my point. I'm not suggesting you don't use biblical terminology. But what I am suggesting is that you not assume your listener knows what you're saying. You have to speak their language.

You need to engage them in a way that they understand. And here before us in John chapter 4 is a perfect illustration of that. We have Jesus engaging a lady. We don't know her name but we call her the woman at the well. She was married and divorced five times and was living with a man. But here is a woman who obviously was trying to fill a void in her life with a man.

Oh if I meet the right man I will find fulfillment. And Jesus used this as a metaphor telling her if she drinks of this water she'll thirst again. So let's read it. John 4 verse 3. Jesus left Judea departed again to Galilee but he needed to go through Samaria.

You might want to underline that phrase in your Bible. He needed to go. So he came to a city of Samaria which is called Sychar near the plot of ground that Jacob gave to his son Joseph. Now Jacob's well was there. Jesus therefore weary from his journey sat by the well. It was about the sixth hour.

That's 12 o'clock new. A woman of Samaria came to draw water. Jesus said give me a drink for his disciples had gone away into the city to buy food. Then the woman of Samaria said how is it that you being a Jew would ask a drink for me a Samaritan woman for Jews have no dealings with Samaritans.

Jesus answered her and said if you knew the gift of God and who it is that says do you give me a drink you would have asked him and he would have given you living water. Stop there. And so if you want to share the gospel Jesus style sharing starts with caring. People can tell when you care. People don't care how much you know until they know how much you care. Let me say that again.

People don't care how much you know until they know how much you care. He needed to go through Samaria. Fact of the matter is Jesus didn't have to pass through Samaria at all.

It was way out of his way. But in another way he had to go because he had an appointment with this woman that was set in the councils of eternity. And she didn't know that an appointment was waiting for her to meet God but indeed it was there. Normally the Jews and the Samaritans had nothing to do with each other.

There was this huge barrier between them. They didn't communicate and she even brings that up to Jesus. Why are you even talking to me? Don't you know we don't talk to each other. We have nothing to do with each other. But Jesus left his comfort zone and went to someone with the gospel and we need to do the same.

Don't miss those divine appointments. Well I'm not comfortable. Well I don't really like them.

I don't really want to talk to them. It's not about you. It's about a lost soul that's loved by the Lord. Pastor Greg Laurie with important encouragement about sharing the gospel with others even when it's outside our comfort zone.

And there's more to come from this message here on A New Beginning. Do you know how to share the gospel? Do you know what the gospel is? Have you ever responded to the gospel yourself? Do you have a personal relationship with the Lord? Pastor Greg someone can enter into that kind of relationship right now can't they?

They can and it's so simple and I think because it's so simple people think oh it can't be that easy. Well look Jesus did all the heavy lifting. He carried the cross for you. He died on that cross that he carried. This isn't about what you do.

It's about what he's done. But here's what the Bible says. Whoever will call upon the name of the Lord will be saved.

You say well okay how do I do that? You do it through prayer. And if you pray this prayer after me I believe God will hear it and answer it and Christ will come to live inside of you. So if you want Jesus to come into your life and forgive you of your sin, if you want to know that you'll go to heaven when you die, if you want to fill that big hole in your heart, pray these words if you would. Lord Jesus I know that I'm a sinner but I know that you're the Savior who died on the cross for my sin. I am sorry for my sin and I turn from it now and I choose to follow you from this moment forward. Be my Savior and my Lord.

Be my God and my friend. Thanks for hearing this prayer and answering this prayer. In Jesus name I pray. Amen. Listen if you just prayed that prayer congratulations and welcome to the family of God.

Amen. And listen we want to help you get started in this new relationship with the Lord. Would you let us send you something? It's free of charge. It's Pastor Greg's New Believers Bible. Millions have read this edition of God's Word. New believers love the study helps written just for them and they appreciate that it's an easy to understand translation. We'll be glad to send it to you today. Just ask for the New Believers Bible when you call 1-800-821-3300.

You can call anytime 1-800-821-3300 or write a new beginning box 4000 Riverside California 92514 or go online to harvest.org. Well Pastor Greg we've really been looking forward to this month because we're launching a brand new animated series that you've been working on for quite some time. Let me ask you what do your grandkids think about the adventures of Ben Born Again and Yellow Dog? They're my toughest audience because they've grown up with my cartoons. I've drawn for them ever since they've been little babies and and so when I first started getting these ideas for these animations you start with the basic idea you storyboard it. It's not unlike what you do in a film. Then you have to write the script and then once the script is recorded with the voice actor and you add music and sound effects then it comes to an animatic.

So an animatic is sort of a rough version of what it's going to look like then it goes to the final animation studio and it's completed and that's what you see when you watch cartoons on television and so forth. So I'll show them to them and when I get the kids to laugh I know I've succeeded and and I've actually included their little stories into these cartoons. A lot of these things are based on stories I've told them over the years. I make up things I make up things I make up characters I tell them Bible stories with sort of a spin with humor added to it.

So this is something I've been doing for years with my grandkids in fact I've had people say to me why don't you do a children's book and I've thought about that maybe one day I will but for now I thought what I would rather do is animation because this is something I have more of a passion for. So this is dipping my toe into the world of bringing the gospel truth in a fun entertaining and humorous way to younger people specifically. So we're very excited about this because one of the things we try to do at Harvest is reach unexpected people in unexpected places with an unexpected message. I like to surprise people where they think wow I didn't even know I was a Christian film or I didn't know this was a Christian animation but all of a sudden hopefully they're being entertained and they're engaged by it but all of a sudden boom here's the gospel message or here's some Bible truth and so we do that without apology. In fact there's for as far as I'm concerned there's no other reason to do this. I mean I'm called to communicate the gospel I'm called to teach the word of God.

That's what I know I'm supposed to do but I want to do it in the most engaging interesting way and not bore people. So this is our newest attempt to do that through the adventures of Ben Born Again and Yellow Dog. Yeah that's right and it really does fit into our mission of getting the gospel out far and wide and we hope you feel strongly about that too. In fact would you partner with us so we can keep reaching out in these innovative new ways? Your investment couldn't come at a better time. You can reach out to us by phone at 1-800-821-3300 1-800-821-3300 or write a new beginning box 4000 Riverside California 92514 or go online to harvest.org but be sure to check out the newest episode of the adventures of Ben Born Again and Yellow Dog.

You can find it on our Harvest Plus app free of charge and it's also available at harvest.org. Check it out today. Well next time more insight from Pastor Greg's message called evangelism Jesus style. Join us here on a new beginning with pastor and Bible teacher Greg Lord. Hey everybody thanks for listening to A New Beginning. This is a podcast made possible by Harvest Partners so for more content that can help you know God and equip you to make him known to others or to learn more about how you can become a Harvest Partner just go to harvest.org
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-02-10 13:11:46 / 2024-02-10 13:22:27 / 11

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