What Is the Jesus Method?
The religious community is getting a bad, but deserved, rap. We are known more for cursing the darkness than lighting a candle.
Evangelicals have been writing books about the “end times” that attempt to scare the wax out people.
They’ve been predicting doom and gloom if a particular political party comes to power.
The lunatic fringe has been harassing abortion clinics and shouting slogans at the homosexual community.
Greedy televangelists “slay in the Spirit” with one hand while grabbing people’s wallets with the other.
Others bang on people’s doors and try to “get a study.”
Some stuff material in doors and letter boxes and call it “outreach.”
Some go to college campuses or other venues to do “street preaching” while holding up signs warning sinners that they’re going to fry in the fires of Hell.
Can you see Jesus, the apostles or early Christians doing any of these things? Well, neither can I. They were in the streets all right. They were proclaiming, not haranguing… inviting, not coercing…reasoning, not raving. They were earning the right to be heard by helping people in the name of Jesus. They were rescuing the suffering. They were speaking to people about their hope. They were building relationships with people by going to their weddings, parties and dinners. They were living the gospel while proclaiming it. They were salt and light not fire and brimstone. It was face-to-face, not in-your-face. It was faithfulness without fanfare. It was gentleness and reverence not grandstanding and glory. It was grace and peace, not shock and awe. It was persuasion without pressure. The love of Christ compelled them and the Spirit empowered them.
If there had been media they would have used it. If there had been websites and blogs they would have webbed and blogged. If there had been trains, planes and automobiles, they would have been on and in them. They would have been out in their world, sowing, watering and bringing in God’s increasing harvest. It’s all there…in your New Testament. Read the gospels. Read Acts. The Jesus Method is yours for the reading.
Next time: Are We Ready?