Class Notes: 9/1/2013
Mark 4:9; " whoever has ears to hear had better listen" The Doctrine of Evangelism
In our study of Mark we are in Mark 4:9; where Jesus warns the people about their response to his message with the words " whoever has ears to hear had better listen" Net note 11
He is stating a principle of perception. Some people can understand Him and some cannot. What does it take to understand spiritual phenomena and divine truth? You have to have ears " The original language literally reads "He who keeps on having ears, to hear let hear" or keep on listening, It is a third person present active imperative so it is a command.
Some of the people in the crowd were obviously puzzled with the parables and Jesus wants them to understand them so He says to those who do not understand "Keep on listening, you'll get it."
This is where we took up a brief study on the doctrine of evangelism because in the parable the seed represents the Gospel message and the sower represents Jesus Christ and by extension every believer who communicates the Gospel.
Last time we saw that evangelism functions in three categories. Personal evangelism, conducted by all believers, the spiritual gift of evangelism, and national evangelism that is accomplished through client nation missionary activity.
We saw that Personal evangelism consists of verbal witnessing where the Gospel is presented by means of the power of God the Holy Spirit and that there also the testimony or witness of one's life under the ministry of God the Holy Spirit as believers glorify God in their advance through momentum testing through the application of doctrine.
We saw that the Gospel itself is the power in witnessing. Rom 1:16; "The Gospel is the power of God with reference to salvation;" but that the evangelist must also understand how God provided salvation through Jesus Christ.
This means that for the Gospel to be properly presented the believer must understand the doctrines related to Christ and His finished work on the cross including reconciliation, redemption, propitiation, imputation, justification, atonement, positional truth and Christ's two deaths on the cross.
The believer's effectiveness in witnessing therefore depends on his ability to present Gospel Acts 16:31; with emphasis on the doctrine of reconciliation, Rom 5:8; Eph 2:13-17; 2Cor 5:17-21; because correct and accurate information is what God the Holy Spirit empowers for salvation.
Rom 1:14-16 states the mental attitude of grace orientation and responsibility in witnessing.
In order to be stable in their testimony believers must have assurance of their eternal security; this provides the confidence and courage that is necessary for Gospel presentation, Rom 8:38-39; 1Pet 1:4-5;
Witnessing is the function of the royal ambassadorship but the motivation for witnessing comes from our priesthood and our love for God, 2Cor 5:18-20;
The biggest failure in witnessing is failing to make the correct issue clear. Remember believing in Christ is the issue; not the renunciation of sins, or giving up bad habits or taboos or performing some ritual. All of that is the false "gospel" of salvation by works.
1Cor 15:3-4; defines the boundaries of the Gospel. Sin is not the issue human works are not the issue. Only faith in Christ alone is the issue. Nothing can be added to the Gospel of grace Eph 2:8-9;
The believer who is witnessing must recognize that God alone has determined the criterion for salvation and that man has no authority to add or subtract from it.
Changing one's behavior pattern, personality, or certain sins accomplishes nothing toward salvation. Feeling sorry for sins, and being baptized are false issues in salvation. Avoid using gimmicks which confuse the issue, such as emotional begging, public invitation, walking of aisles, raising hands, or anything else.
Effective witnessing depends on the ministry of the Holy Spirit in His convincing or convicting ministry. The Holy Spirit makes the presentation of the Gospel understandable and real in common grace; this is the inhale of second birth
Efficacious grace is the ministry of God the Holy Spirit in making effective the non-meritorious exhale of faith in Jesus Christ and that is when the person receives eternal life and begins their new spiritual life John 3:1-16;
Believers who are involved with evangelism must understand the following:
The Bible is the absolute standard of truth, 2Pet 1:12-21;
The Bible is the source of the Gospel, Luke 16:28-31; 1Cor 15:3-4;
The Bible is the mind of Christ, 1Cor 2:16;
The Bible is divine power, Heb 4:12;
God's Word never returns empty, Isa 55:11; NET note 32
God's Word endures forever, Luke 21:33; 1Pet 1:25;
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