Preparing for Our Gospel Meeting

Written by  //  April 6, 2016  //  Evangelism  //  No comments

S46stchurchofchristbuildingpic

The time for our gospel meeting is near, and in view of the Lord’s money and the time we will spend, we ought to be seriously interested in making it a successful meeting.   For the anticipated week to be a  success, we must realize our responsibility and gladly accept it.   Certainly, the effort of the one who will preach is important, but his effort will be greatly hindered if we fail to do our part.

The purpose of our meeting is at least twofold:  First, it is a sincere attempt to seek and save the lost.   The apostle Paul wrote of this important work which he was always ready to do: “I am a debtor both to Greeks and to barbarians, both to wise and to unwise.   So, as much as is in me, I am ready to preach the gospel to you who are in Rome also.   For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek” (Romans 1:14-16).   A gospel meeting is one of the greatest opportunities that we have to invite friends and neighbors to hear the truth.   If we don’t take advantage of this opportunity, is it possible that we are demonstrating a shame for the gospel of Christ?

Another purpose of our meeting is to edify our brethren.   The Hebrew writer spoke of the importance of our assembling as an opportunity to build one another up:  “And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, not   forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching” (Hebrews 10:24-25).   For those who attend, a week-long meeting can revive and encourage much needed strength.

Whether evangelizing, edifying, or both, a gospel meeting may help us to bear much fruit.   But the success of such things often depends on preparations made by the  entire congregation.

Certainly, no one would tolerate a preacher who came unprepared, yet many members are often unprepared for a meeting.   There are several things that each of us can do to help our meeting be a success, and this will involve a strong effort from everyone:

First, we can prepare by resolving to attend every service.   We have announced the schedule of this meeting months ahead of time so that all can make plans to attend.   Our schedules should be clear so that each evening we can attend and show others that assembling with the saints is a high priority in our lives.   Of course, we understand when circumstances make it physically impossible for some to attend, (be it work or illness).   But as an individual, you know whether or not you have a strong desire to worship God in spirit and truth, and you and God knows what effort you have made to do so.    He will be the Judge.

We can also prepare by continually inviting others to the meeting.  Whether acquaintances or strangers, we always need to be talking to people about God’s word.  And when there are great opportunities for people to hear His word proclaimed, we should be doing our best to announce this to everyone we encounter.  Who can you invite to our meeting?   Could you offer to provide them with transportation?  Even if some say that they cannot come, you can use this as an opportunity to speak to them about spiritual matters.

Finally, we can also prepare for our meeting by remembering to pray to God to bless this effort.    Prayer before, during, and after the meeting is essential, and yet it is often neglected.  Paul once wrote: “Finally, brethren, pray for us, that the word of the Lord may run swiftly and be glorified, just as it is with you” (2Thessalonians 3:1).  Successful preparation means working as though it depends upon us, while praying as though it depends upon God.

And finally, we can personally prepare our minds before we meet in worship.  Our meeting is not a social gathering.  While we may encounter new people or see our brethren more often during the week, the purpose of our coming  together is to hear the word of God proclaimed and to honor and praise our heavenly Father.  The hustle and bustle of the day should be cleared from our hearts and minds as we approach God in worship, (not just during the meeting but every time we come together for worship).

Will you make the necessary preparations for this congregation to have a successful Gospel Meeting?  With the help of God, our meeting will accomplish the purpose for which it is intended: glorying our Lord by the proclaiming of His word and edifying our brothers and sisters in Christ!

-John Hagenbuch

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

member into thinking his salvation is secure, it also is cancerous in nature spreading from one member to another.

Myriads of people are looking for an easy way to heaven, and this “Brylcream Religion” appeals to them. It satisfies their conscience and allow them to be saved (they think) on the “lay away plan” — when it is convenient.

 

CHRISTIANITY INVOLVES DOING. 

The person with this attitude never comprehends true Christianity, nor does he ever receive the full benefits of its blessings. The “pure religion and undefiled” of James 1:27 involves DOING. The real joy of being a Christian can be realized only by “visiting the fatherless and widows in their affliction”; not by delegating the work to the preacher or somebody else. The greatest thrill in seeing others obey the gospel is shared by the one who has had a personal hand in converting the lost soul; not in waiting for others to teach them. Though having visitors when ill brings comfort, there is a more abundant sense of pleasure felt by the person doing the visiting. The deepest inspiration or edification from worship is obtained by those who participate in the singing, teaching, or bountiful giving; not by those who have come to “enjoy the services” as spectators. Not only does the person with a “little dab” of religion fail to reap the great joys of Christianity in this life, he will also lose his soul eternally.

The Bible teaches that Christians are to seek God first in their lives. (Mt. 6:33) The life of a Christian involves daily service, not part time activity. “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service” (Rom. 12:1). A living sacrifice describes active and interested participation. It is impossible to be a faithful Christian without belonging wholly to the Lord and His cause. “What? Know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.” (1 Cor. 6:19,20). Other statements show our manner of labor, “…always abound in the work of the Lord…” (1 Cor. 15: 58), and “…to be ready to every good work” (Titus 3:1).

 

A “LITTLE DAB” WON’T DO

The average Christian is familiar with the above passages, but in application he tends to omit himself from their pointed meaning. We know that a “little dab” of religion would not be sufficient for the preacher or leaders of the church but through some unexplained way, we feel we can enter the pearly gates with this small amount. By inspiration of God James was addressing Christians when he wrote, “But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves. For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass: For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was. But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the word, this man shall be blessed in his deed” (Jas. 1:22,23). Let us not confuse a slogan for hairdressing with the word of God. Hairdressing is only for the head–not for the soul.

– Robert Harkrider

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

has been honestly earned. Proverbs 22:1 says, “A good name is more desirable than great riches; to be esteemed is better than silver or gold.” Is our reputation an accurate reflection of our true character? A good reputation is desirable, but true character is more important because character is who we really are. In the end it is our character that will be judged. We may fool others and find false security in a “good reputation”, but we can be sure that we will not fool God on the Day of Judgment. Reputations based on lies will be found out, but godly character regardless of reputation will be rewarded.

 

“For the Lord sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart.” 1 Sam 16:7

 

Leave a Comment