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9-8-2019 Church Priorities

Truth For a New Generation / Alex McFarland
The Truth Network Radio
September 9, 2019 12:18 am

9-8-2019 Church Priorities

Truth For a New Generation / Alex McFarland

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September 9, 2019 12:18 am

9-8-2019 Church Priorities by Truth for a New Generation

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EMG radio for today's culture and timeless truth come together it's reasoned relevant content apologetics worldview and answers to the questions that you need to know from Alex McFarlane ministries. This is true for a new generation radio and now the man who preached in 50 states and 50 days speaker, writer, and advocate for Christian apologetics Dr. Alex McFarlane if there's one question that I get asked repeatedly week after week.

Everywhere I go is the question of millennial's and younger millennial's in generations, he can they be evangelized. I give God the glory. We had a very fruitful month in the last 30 days of seeing millennial's come to Christ and I think about the young adult lady that my wife and I were able to lead to the Lord Sunday afternoon we were at a place and we were talking to a young lady and she remarked that she was thinking about moving in with her boyfriend and that really big at conversation about moral and spiritual issues, and I begin to talk about Christ in our relationship to God.

This particular girl said that she was spiritual but not religious, and I asked if she'd ever had the gospel explained and said what you think of when you think of the word gospel and she said out is that what baptism is the gospel being baptized.

This is not exactly the word gospel means good news and we begin to explain what is the gospel the death, burial, and the resurrection of Jesus for the sins of the world and we come into a relationship with Christ through faith and within a few minutes we held hands she bowed her head and chest Christ in her heart and later texted us and thanked us profusely and another soul had open heart to Christ. We shared about becoming a disciple and learning and growing as a believer, but the answer is yes, millennial's can be reached for Christ. In effect, in my experience I think they're very spiritually hungry, very open and ready to hear about Jesus and how they can begin to build their life on him for that. I welcome you to today's edition of TNG radio Alex McFarland here and were going to talk about the church is not about outreach and priorities and that with me is is my friend and colleague, Tripp Harmon and that trip you were in the pastorate for number of years me to know you're working with us as we do events all around the country to evangelize the lost and equip the saved but when you say that despite changes in culture and I know you know we've got social media and Internet and so many dynamics going on in the culture, but human nature hasn't changed. People still need Christ. People still have that hunger where they ask you know why am I here what is my purpose. What does the future hold. How can I be stable and secure. How can I have peace in my heart and fulfillment in life. The basic human longings that only Jesus can satisfy millennial Jonesy or whomever it hasn't changed.

People are the same on the inside and the answer is still Christ is not absolutely out. I would agree with that 100%. I think with the gist of a study of history alongside a study of God's word. We come to that conclusion fairly quickly that we have is people as you said that we have the same desires and longings in our hearts and our lives. Cultures change the technology changes and and the ways and means the people may go about that search for meaningful purpose.

They may change a little bit but, but, inevitably, is there and it's been said summary times before and others that God shaped void inside of a person sold his other heart. So study show that 80% maybe 85% of American churches are plateaued or declining and some of you listening to the program right now. Maybe your church, your kind of flat when it comes to evangelism now. I think you are very well. We do a lot of maintenance of the body of Christ and people that are you know habitual churchgoers and plugged into churches even if they moved to a new city. The probably going to find a church's of people that are solidly grounded as a disciple, that's wonderful. Praise God, but really we're not reaching what sociologist would call this replacement rate were not reaching lost people pastors tell me that I had lunch with the pastor today trip and he said that in 30 years of ministry he had done almost 500 funerals, as is a very large church but were were were burying more than were evangelizing and more are winding up in the church cemeteries that are coming through the doors and making their way to the altar to be born again, and so we've got to be honest with ourselves that in the American church. We need the Lord of the harvest, the Holy Spirit of God to give us a renewed spark of evangelism and winning the lost, to talk about that. Let's talk a little bit about some Scripture verses.

I mean, I am encouraged trip when Matthew 1618.

Jesus said I will build my church and the gates of hell would not prevail against the clearly the church will always exist absolutely but but here's the thing, and I want to throw this out to you between the two of us. It's been our privilege to speak and minister in hundreds of churches do you think a lot of churches understand that very often. If you want a different result. There's going to have to be a change of approach if if what were doing is not producing a desired result. There will going to have to modify what were doing absolutely nothing.

Some churches are are doing that, you know, we see that there are churches out there that are growing the reaching people to baptizing.

I think in general we know we've reached a different town that yet. Some ways I think it depends on how you look at it may be disheartening for you. It may be exciting for you. I think were reaching a time in America towards more like the first century where individual believers are going to have to intentionally make relationships with unbelievers to get out there with their neighbors with them in your where the hanging out doing their hobbies intentionally blessing people just loving them till they ask why, ensuring the gospel were forged in a town where people don't just stumble in the church like they once did, because that's the right thing to do. We gotta take a brief break to come back over and ask three hard questions. Three honest soul-searching questions. The church that wants to survive and thrive. TNG radio with Alex McFarland and Argus department that right after this from. I am a watchman ministries. Here's today's I am a watchman minute, I'd like you to think about Mary the mother of Jesus and how difficult it must've been for her to tell her parents and Joseph that she was expecting 2000 years ago, a pregnant, unmarried teen in Israel could be cast out from her village. Perhaps stoned to death. I'm sure her parents asked her how did this happen, and though I don't know for sure. I imagine Satan whispered to Mary, just lie.

Tell everyone you were assaulted by a Roman soldier and assault was possible. It was actually a more probable scenario than claims of an Immaculate Conception.

Mary just a little lie in all your problems will go away the temptation to lie can be great, but speaking truth honors God and when we live to honor God. God will honor us people be faithful, be a watchman, I am a If you're a Christian parent. You of course want to instill a biblical view of life in the hearts of your children, your pastor, you want to offer ministry that draws young families to your church. This is Alex McFarland encouraging you to check out my new book and video curriculum.

The 21 toughest questions your kids will ask about Christianity. I interviewed hundreds of children ages 5 to 12 and we address actual questions from actual children. The spiritual issues that are on the minds of your kids the book and video lessons are great for groups of any size and was produced with the goal of equipping kids to stand strong for Christ in any situation. The 21 toughest questions your kids will ask the book study guide and video series. You'll find that AFA plane cannot not afraid to ask hard questions we care about a lot of things.

We are engage an online group of millennial's, brought together by a common goal to share truth apply Scripture and to get involved in are lost and hurting engage host discussions that help you apply a biblical worldview to your daily life engage at liberty University. You'll earn more than a degree in the satisfaction of seeing what you can accomplish and what God can accomplish more than 600 options from associate 100% online more fully, leaving discover God's truth through every degree at liberty University where we train champions for Christ good at liberty\exploit. To learn more.

That's liberty\exploit: timeless cruise soundbite culture for a new generation radio you were talking about revitalizing the church and you your never been made to guys that love the local church more than Alex McFarland and trip Harmon. It's been our privilege to be in a lot of churches in all 50 states and folks if you need us to help you and will do kind of analysis and where you are, what you doing and prayerfully from the heart give you some advisement on turning around a plateaued or declining church reach out to us what we love to help the church hate my email If you church needs help and let us hear from you, you know in Ephesians chapter 523 2425 the word of God says that just as the husband is head of the wife even Christ is head of the church, his body and Jesus Christ himself is its savior. And Jesus is the head of the church and so with that in mind, let's let's remember what his mandate. His mission is for the church in Matthew 28, 18 to 20 Jesus said all authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.

Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the father and of the son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I've commanded you.

And behold, I'm with you always, to the end of the age were talking about three hard questions that every church really must ask themselves if they're going to survive and thrive and I trip Lisette about this for second the Scripture. I see a lot of mandates in here go make disciples go to all nations, baptize these believers in the name of the father-son Holy Spirit.

Teach them to observe what all things not part of the great panorama of Christian truth, but all things and so there's that great word of encouragement that Jesus says to individual believers into the whole church I'm with you always blow us up about this for second making disciples. How is that different than then evangelizing the lost. I think you are making disciples. The first step of disciple making is evangelism right, it evangelism is the first step you know you get them to that that profession of faith in Christ and I think that's where a lot of us Protestant evangelical churches have fallen short.

A lot of churches believe in evangelism have done evangelism are filled with some safe people who were never discipled themselves that I don't quite get why would we do now where we go. And if that's not happening.

Then you've got a lot of believers who never get past that infancy stage or childhood stage. The fake Nepal talk about the church needing meet instead of milk and there's just a lot of Christians who have never gotten anything more than milk, yeah that's church history. Here are the three questions because as we said near 8/10 churches are plateaued or declining. And thank God. Thank God for the faithful Christians that the faithful pastors but look America, we're in trouble. We have got to have a great move of God, as I really think it behooves every church to be asking themselves these questions and in here we go will unpack each one and if your church is flat.

If you don't have young people. If you're not reaching the lost impact in your community. You might want to ponder these number one is what we're doing biblical number two is what were doing fruitful and number three. Listen, are we willing to do what it takes to truly become obedient. I could ask this question. Another what is my church willing to do what it takes to achieve our assignment and we just read it, making disciples, going to all the world and and very often we might give some money to foreign missions. Or we might send a team overseas and and we understand that we participated in missions but you know we go to the ends of the earth, but we need also go to the end of our street and if I'm willing to have one ladle in the pot called foreign missions. Let's never forget our own community so as to let's ask this question.

First, about is what were doing biblical trip you.

You spent two decades in the pastorate if you count the years as a youth pastor and then senior pastor as well.

I've spent two decades in the past are very often, some closely guarded turf it it's it's not necessarily an evil simple thing but it's my preference, not necessarily something that's a biblical mandate and all my goodness, a lot of pastors they get on some land mines when they go messing with tradition don't think absolutely we had a professor in college Christian ministries class and he used to talk about what he called the means ends inversion you know a lot of churches I would do some things. The goal of making disciples reaching and after a while you that became what they did and then it sort of became you that program or that that effort that they were putting together the church door became a sacred cow in itself, and they were just doing it doing that the means of the as we do this in order for the ends of reaching people the gospel for making disciples, and after a while it becomes with this is what we do. This is how we doing this is who we are and we were not attached. Yeah, he was not working anymore. Exactly.

And you know the old saying I think it's in one of Peter Wagner's leadership books but hey if the horses died dismount and folks look.

Hey, I love the old hymn sell of Fanny Crosby, and leaning on the everlasting arms. I grew up, my grandmother sang those kind of songs to me.

I love it, but whether it's the music, or whether it's the the order of the service or the times or what ever I really don't think most churches are losing their fidelity to Scripture. Most churches not all but most churches they do believe the Bible is the word of God, but I think we need to go to question number two not is what I'm doing biblical focus.

The majority of churches want to be biblical. I think they did. The question becomes not listen carefully, is what I'm doing fruitful because clearly there's a lot of moving parts that are not bearing fruit in terms of salvation's now people might say yeah, but it's hard where I live and I get that but prayer can break through anything.

If you're up in New England. My heart goes out to 70. The people up there and then the upper Northeast that is hard ground the upper Northwest Seattle, Portland, Sacramento even like Idaho. I've been all through their system has some tough sledding. I get it, but prayer so one of the things if you're asking is what I'm doing fruitful. Let me encourage you to make your church a church where all of the programs are prayed for and I mean intercession and prayer and fasting because the difference between the adequate and the exceptional. The difference between the nominal and the spring would take up the third question am I willing to do what it takes to be obedient when TMG radio returns don't go away. P&G unashamed conferences coming to Richmond, Virginia, October 11 and 12.

Experience core truths that make for an unshakable faith with Tina Marie Griffin Todd Starks Kemal Schilling Nikki Addison Chuck Chris Myers and William Fetter. Romans 116 says I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes come to the truth for a new generation conference get equipped, empowered and inspired to confidently share the gospel of Jesus Christ.

He is committed to impacting our nation for Christ and the future and equipping you to be a difference maker.

Register now by calling 877 yes God one that's 877 yes, God, and the number one or visit the TMG unashamed conference, Richmond, Virginia, October 11 12 dive deeper into your faith first Peter 315 tells us to be ready always to give an answer for the hope we have were instructed to be prepared to defend our faith. This is Alex McFarlane for the life answers teams students we train at North Greenville University, a leading Christian college in South Carolina. The life answers.

Teams are made up of students who will inspire and equip your congregation. These apologetics teams. We train speaking churches to youth groups and train Christians of all ages to address key issues of our times. From a biblical perspective like is there a God is the Bible true. What about gender and moral issues. Call me at 864977 2008 and we will arrange for the life answers team to come to your church and give a presentation that will benefit your people for years to come. 864-977-2000 eight and always be ready in the midst of a culture obsessed with relativism. Alex McFarlane is a voice you can trust to speak the timeless truths of Christianity in a timely way.

You're listening to the truth for a new generation radio and I love it in Matthew when Jesus told the disciples wherever two or three are gathered in my name, I am there in the midst of them.

Welcome back to the program. Alex here and jot unit would be to continue tough about the church and how your church can be jumpstarted and revitalized in 30 days or less, and it can be honestly and it begins with some may be honest look at some hard questions before we continue this very important topic of the state of the health of the American church. I do want to mention truth for Nguyen were so excited now listen up Richmond Virginia Cincinnati Ohio October 11 12 going to be in Richmond, Virginia, November 15 16 Cincinnati, Ohio, and you don't want to miss it. It's going to be so exciting, great speakers, people like Josh McDowell and Todd Starnes Irwin lutes are alike and is one of the greatest Christian speakers you will ever hear from Moody Church in Chicago or when literature the website is truth for a new truth for a trip widget we had this summer our camp. 86 teens from seven states since the camp you've been on the road preaching.

I've been on the road preaching were doing television were doing radio were distributing literature. I just days ago, was in front of 200 pastors in Florida and that many of them were so excited because they're going to begin to incorporate apologetics, and equipping the people to defend the faith, and that some young pastors that are 2324 25 so excited about what God is doing and that a few pastors that really needed a word of encouragement, but saving souls, saving the church spreading the gospel. That's what were about by many different approaches and it is really saving of our nation's and it absolutely and your you're doing so much Alex and I burnt a lot of road time. A lot of their time spent a lot of time the airport on what a privilege.

You know it. It you'd agree with me.

What a privilege to serve the Lord to to be in the gospel ministry and I had a mentor ministry. Years ago I was a pastor and he he'd said several times if I had 100 laps to live over a bit pastor and everyone a man and a low guy.

I know that you could say the same thing to have 100 laps to live over, you'd be an apologist and evangelist and everyone and what you're doing is is just so impactful for the kingdom and topics like this one today on the church and those helping folks that would say this as a fortress for new generation being the of ministry advancement guy I would say this if if you know ministry takes money and if you get any benefit whatsoever from publications are broadcasting anything we can use your help.

You know, we don't go into this to make money and there's times as you know we do some of these conferences and and we know that all your we just hope we might break even. We don't do it for our for making money.

So folks, if any, any benefit that you got all from the ministry. If you much prayerfully consider sending five dollars sending a dollar even just to help out with the gospel ministry, we would greatly appreciate it. And that money will go to ministry. Amen.

Well thanks very much and you can donate online truth for Nguyen You can write to us PO Box 10231, Greensboro, NC 27404 and in trip is right you know it's some spring invested in winning cells. Yet I give God the glory that we see around 3000 decisions for Christ in a year and we know how to stretch a dollar. So help us because what were doing. This is really helping our nation. Now let me get to the question that is the one that might be the hardest, perhaps for many, the most bitter pill to swallow is what were doing biblical is what were doing fruitful and then finally, am I willing to do what it takes to be obedient because I'm just gonna say this, that if your church is not winning souls.

If your church is not seen growth in lives changed and lost people evangelized then then we've got to admit that what were doing is less than obedient because the natural state of the church is health and growth in out sometimes for pastors that we've got to reproduce ourselves and we've got to begin to plan for a succession program. Let me just say this trip. I remember once that one of the churches I pastored. I won't say which one, but I got myself in trouble. We had a big youth event and the people there was a circular driveway and people would park up next to the building and I blocked it off because I knew we'd have three, 400 youth in the front yard and so people had to park in the parking lot, which was a walk of another 75 or 80 feet, and I mean I got taken to the woodshed because I blocked off a few people's favorite parking spot and I wasn't trying to be flippant, but I said you know you all are wrong because we had hundreds of kids appear to hear the gospel, many of whom made a salvation decision, and if you had to walk 75 feet so that kids could get up close and hear the gospel that just part of the price we pay, so it don't we all have to ask ourselves whether it's a cherished beloved parking place or whether it's my personal favorite pew whether it's whatever the question is am I willing to do what it takes to be obedient, absolutely. And now got a good friend. We were talking just the other day that this good friend of about 20 years or more of that. I got his in his consultant in church revitalization and the tragic thing is that he admits that most churches by the time they have called him and he comes in it's too late, and any other, they're just too far gone him and he usually has some open questions he can ask them. Are you willing to forget this budget and start over. Are you willing to change your bylaws. Are you willing to sell part most or all of your property and you know if they say no to some of these questions that he can pretty quickly say is too late now. Ephesians 5 says Jesus is the head of the church. I'm not Billy Graham wasn't Charles Stanley is not the head of the church. Jesus is the head of the church. He is the head of the body and we still have the mandate preach the gospel to every creature. Mark 1615. Make disciples from every nation and I and I would say that the church part of our role is to hold back the darkness we are to be a roadblock against the encroachment of darkness. Christ is the head we have our calling and we know who called us and we know the mission and we know the great message that God so loved the world that he sent his one and only son, so let me encourage you, your church can be saved.

Your church can be saved but you've got to be willing and maybe as a group in a leadership and praying together, getting all hearts clear in our lives.

Unified is a biblical I would being fruitful and are we willing to do what it takes to become obedient and to again find the blessing favor in the increase from God because what hangs in the balance not only the cells of people, but the future of our nation ENG radio is made possible by the friends of Alex McFarland ministry, PO Box 10231 is Borough, NC 27404. That's PO Box 10231 is Borough, NC 27404 Collis at 877 yes, God one. That's 877 yes, God in the number one or give while you're there, listen the program archives.

Read Alex's blog invite Alex to speak at your event or contact Alex with a question or comment, Alex Thanks for listening today and join us again next time is we bring you more true for a new generation TNG radio

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