Equipping the Saints in the New Year

Saturday Musings

Equipping the SaintsThere is nothing like having a conversation with a seeker of truth who is confused over what the Bible teaches. They  genuinely want to know what to believe and how they can trust what you tell them. I just finished having a two hour conversation with such a seeker whose first twenty years included no religious instruction or involvement followed by 8 years of involvement in what many (including me) would deem a cult. There is nothing like it because it is a powerful motivator to know the truth better so as to explain it more clearly and simply.

The individual I had the pleasure of talking to today hasn’t run into Christians who could answer her questions. That’s more than sad. That’s tragic.

But it is also a powerful stimulus to want to motivate more Christians to share their faith with greater clarity and compassion. Such seekers need believers who will be patient with their questions and knowledgable about “the faith once for all delivered to the saints” (Jude 3). Christians need to be better trained to give a reason for the hope that is in them” (1 Peter 3:15). It is not your pastor’s job to be the Bible answer man. It is your pastor’s job to equip the saints (that would be you) to do the work of the ministry of reconciliation (Ephesians 4:11-12; 2 Cor. 5:18).

Those thoughts have led me to announce a new addition to the BLOG. For the rest of January I will be writing a series of posts designed to …

  1. Offer ideas for seasonal outreaches that Christians / Churches might do to build relationships with non-Christians.
    • These will be in correspond to cultural things happening in the calendar of the year.
    • I will get these out in January so that you as an individual or church can have time to adequately pray and plan to the season in which they appear. For example …
      • New Year Opportunities
      • Lent Opportunities
      • Saint Patrick’s Day Opportunities
      • Spring Opportunities
      • Easter Opportunities
      • End of School Opportunities
      • Summer Opportunities
      • You get the idea.
  2. Offer ideas for books and study guides that Christians / Churches might read or study to better prepare them to be sensitive witnesses to people from various backgrounds.
    • I will try to keep these in the “affordable and essential issues” category. 
      • Preparing to talk to a Mormon
      • Preparing to talk to a Jehovah’s Witness
      • Preparing to talk to a person with no background in the Bible
      • Preparing to talk to a skeptic.
      • Preparing to talk to a seeker from a Hindu, Muslim, or Buddhist background.
    • I will try to keep these in the simple but not simplistic category
      • Don’t expect scholarly works (although I might not be able to contain myself at times!)
      • Do expect works or websites that will equip you to deal with the most typical kinds of questions that people have.
  3. I want to invite any readers who have an interest in these things to write me with your suggestions for books, websites and resources that would be helpful to pass on to others for #2 above.
  4. And I want to invite you also to send me ideas that might be incorporated into the plan of #1.

The Body of Christ needs to be equipped so they can be passionately involved in helping others know the greatest news ever announced about the greatest person in the universe.

I hope you will pass these posts on to the people in your church that can help others use them, adapt them, expand them or just have these ideas challenge them to come up with their own ideas.

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