February : A Word From the Pastor

Well meaning Christians often think they can accomplish God’s purposes by their own resources.

They even think that this is what God requires of them. When facing the task of evangelism, suitable methods are devised to persuade, but not manipulate, the lost to trust in Christ. The problem with this approach is that it overlooks the condition of those who need to be saved. The lost are not simply ignorant of the truth – they are spiritually dead in their trespasses and sins. The only remedy for this lost condition is the life quickening power of God. This the Holy Spirit gives in connection with the gospel of Christ.

The Apostle Paul declared,

“Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel, not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of no effect” (1 Cor. 1:17).

Wise words are insightful, but they are not powerful.

It is the word of the cross that God empowers to awaken the dead and bring them to saving faith in Christ.

“For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God” (1 Cor. 1:18).

Salvation is accomplished by the atoning work of Christ on the cross.

He died for our sins; He propitiated the righteous judgment of God; He secured reconciliation between God and man. It is this great work that is infused with divine power in the work of evangelism. We don’t preach a message that sinners want to hear; we don’t substitute another message that is more acceptable to the lost; we don’t depend upon our ability to lead others to Christ. Instead we preach the cross of Christ.

We preach the message that God uses to bring sinners to repentance and grant them eternal life in Christ.

This work of evangelism is greatly needed in our world today. We must not abandon the message of the cross in order to lead others to Christ. We must be faithful to Christ and faithful to the cross of Christ. We must also be in prayer for the Lord to open doors of ministry so we can speak God’s truth to a lost world. Our only hope is in the Lord Jesus Christ – not in us. Let us be faithful in pleading with God to exalt Christ – the gospel of Christ – the cross of Christ – in our world today. Great works are accomplished only by faithfulness to God, His truth, and His power.

– Gary W. Custis