Rebirthing a Sense of Urgency

Nov 2, 2015 | Perspectives

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I read a very sad report today. According to author and pastor Ed Stetzer, “Almost 1 in 5 churchgoers say they never read the Bible.” He went on to say that in the UK, children didn’t know the Nativity was a Bible story—but their parents (more than half of them!) thought the Hunger Games might be.

“But it’s more than simply not knowing stories from Scripture,” Stetzer continued. “. . . As a whole, Americans, including many Christians, hold unbiblical views on hell, sin, salvation, Jesus, humanity, and the Bible itself.”[1]

It’s bad enough that people are not reading the Bible; many preachers today aren’t preaching it either. Turn on many Christian TV networks and what do you hear? False promises. “Send your best offering and God will give you a hundredfold return!” or, “God wants His children rich—all of them!”

That message isn’t working for those Christians whose homes and property have been taken by ISIS.

These preachers ought to be telling the world how very soon Christ will return. Jesus said it twice in one chapter: “Behold—I am coming quickly. . . . Yes, I am coming quickly” (Rev. 22:12, 20[2]). But Christians aren’t reading it. And preachers aren’t preaching it.

Christians have lost a sense of urgency.

But not all of us. Pastor, you passionately love Jesus, and you’re working as hard as you can to reap a harvest for Christ. How can you create a sense of urgency in your congregation?

Start preaching on the Second Coming more—or again, if it’s been a while. Jesus’ return is what we’re living for. It’s great to teach about faith, sure. “Without faith it is impossible to please him” (Heb. 11:6). And the body of Christ needs teaching on how to live this life. But this life is not the end. As the song goes, “I’m living this life just to live again.”[1] And we need to be ready.

Look around and notice the “signs of the times”—they’re everywhere, and more abundant than ever before in history. Then preach about Jesus’ return—with urgency. Have your Sunday school teachers teach on it. Have your small groups focus on it. Have your worship team sings songs about it. And challenge your church to read about it, on their own. (A list of Second Coming verses can be found at Jesusiscoming.com)

Jesus is coming soon—and people need to know it. They may not be reading about it, but we must preach about it and prepare them for it.

With urgency.

Article by Renee Chavez

 

[1] John P. Kee, “He’ll Welcome Me.”

[1] Ed Stetzer, “The Epidemic of Bible Illiteracy in Our Churches,” Prophecy News Watch, July 14, 2015, http://www.prophecynewswatch.com/2015/July14/145.html.

[2] Scriptures are from the Disciples’ Literal New Testament: Serving Modern Disciples by More Fully Reflecting the Writing Style of the Ancient Disciples, Copyright © 2011 Michael J. Magill. All Rights Reserved. Published by Reyma Publishing.

 

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