Call-In Classic Christianity Radio – Bob George P668 (09-03-21)
The Gospel, the Message of Grace in Christ Jesus, Must be Told to Grow in Grace
You are blessed if you are under a church that teaches the true message of grace and not one that teaches a mixed gospel. If you are in an extremely law-oriented church, then it is strongly urged that you leave such a church lest that influence continues for the rest of your life. But once you grasp the message of grace in Christ Jesus, then you will continue to grow in grace. If you have it in your heart to teach the message of grace, then certainly make yourself available to teach that grace to others, as the Lord leads and provides such opportunities for you. A pastor who teaches grace should be looking for people of like mind to teach that message of grace. It is good advice to raise a core leadership team that will teach that message with the mindset of continuing that message to future generations. That is also the model Jesus showed as he spent time with twelve men, so that after his departure those men would carry that message to the ends of the earth.
When helping people understand grace who have been so accustomed to legalism, point out scripture after scripture, so truth is established by the word of God and so there is no where to argue with that, for it is what scripture is saying. Of course, you can only reach people that want to learn. As you meet such people, and you share with a gentle and kind heart, then truth will be received by them, for they have a humble and teachable heart. You will not reach Mormons or Jehovah Witnesses or Catholics who do not want to listen and learn.
There are several ways to share truth, and one effective way is through home bible studies. In today’s world, you can also set up an online zoom meeting, when in person meetings are not possible. The best way to grow in grace yourself is to lead a bible study, and then you are forced to dig up answers from scriptures yourself. All you really have to be is a week or so ahead of anyone in your understanding of scripture, but it is strongly discouraged that a recent believer should not be put in a position of leadership lest pride develops in him. Rather, those mature enough in the Lord, who have a heart toward growing in grace, should be given the opportunity to teach, those who are led of the Lord with the ability to teach and who have shown themselves faithful and have respect from among the people with their manner of life and conduct.
If you have PowerPoint, that is an excellent way to have scriptures displayed to the people as you teach. Bob George ministries also has excellent resource materials, such as which goes through the scriptures in an orderly way to help people grasp foundational truth. Start with a foundation, which is Jesus. The foundation from Jesus is the word of God and then focus on the New Covenant we live under today, which is vitally important for people to understand. We are under a new covenant, not the law that kills but under grace that gives life.
Many people have asked how do you know God is calling you into full time ministry. God does not call you into ministry but calls you unto Himself. God will never tell you to go to some place. He will tell you, “Come unto Me and let Me train you. I will send you where I want you to go later.“ God directs each believer and works in each believer according to the good work He has created for each of us. But we are always at a point of growing in grace, and that takes time. Not only time for you but time for someone else, like a marriage partner, to be ready with you. You have to wait on the Lord’s timing on these things. Recall even the apostle Paul had spent some 12 years in the desert of Arabia learning from the Lord until He was ready to do the work of an apostle that God had called him to. It could possibly be that being a former Pharisee of Pharisees it took Paul that long to get all that legalistic thinking out of his head. So personal growth in you, learning how to depend on Christ and not on your own self sufficiency, God has to work out in all of us, and that can take different paths. But also a soulmate has to be ready with you.
Bob shared from his own life, how both he and his wife had to be ready together, before starting full time ministry. Amy grew up in Ukraine, very poor. She was not real anxious to get back into poverty. As a successful businessman, it would be a very significant drop in income to get involved in full time ministry, and you would have to raise your own support. So Bob had to wait for Amy to come to a point where she was willing and not just a “Oh well, I will gut it out and go”, but where she was exited about going into full time work. When that occurred then Bob knew it was time, as he would found that throughout his life with Amy to be true. Whenever Bob and his wife Amy were in agreement with something, and when it happened in God’s timing it was God’s will. So try to wait for that unity of Spirit to be there before moving on something.
Listen also on the audio as Bob George also shared how he came to Christ through Campus Crusade ministries, upon reading the four spiritual laws gospel tract given to him by Bill Bright, and since then spent numerous hours of time in God’s word, for that was his passion. And from there, how full time ministry came about for him and what growing in grace had to occur in his life so that he depended on Christ rather than his own self sufficiency, which was what he was accustomed to do as a lost person with a successful business career.
There is a point in time in our life where we are presented with the message of grace in Christ so that you become a child of God, born again, having the Spirit of God placed in you. Sadly, there are barriers in the world to receiving this message of grace. If you grew under a false religion, a strong legalistic environment, such as the apostle Paul, circumstances in your life had to occur to reveal to him his real problem. In his case, he heard a voice from heaven telling him that Christ is who he is persecuting. Not many of us will have such an encounter, hearing a voice from heaven, but we will have the Spirit of God speak to our hearts, drawing us unto Himself. Others have grown up in cults, whether Mormons or Jehovah Witness, or Catholicism and so there is this erroneous training you had under such a false religion. This can take time to unravel such twisted thinking and the errors that were previously taught. But the gospel is the power of God unto salvation and faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God and the word must rest on soft hearts, yearning for truth to be made known to them.
It is sad to see people far away that you cannot reach, a brother or a sister, a son or a daughter, that is not open to discussing things of truth. Anything that is alive will grow. If you are not growing it is more than likely because you never came alive. A person must come to realize that the things that people are saying in error do not work. That could be a priest, a legalistic pastor or even a psychologist. The things they are saying are not working because they are in conflict with truth in the word of God, and truth is what sets people free, while error keeps a person in bondage. To have truth, you must first come to Christ, who is the Truth, so you have truth to draw from.
By the grace of God we pray someone will come to Christ, and if we cannot communicate, call or meet them in person, then that is really all that is available for us to do. But if you are able talk to them, keep talking to them about the person of Christ. A good question to ask him, if he says he came to Christ at an early age, is “What was your understanding of the gospel?” I bet his answer will be “Jesus died for my sins.” Most of the time that is going to be their simple answer. But, you can then explain to them, “I am sorry, that is not the fullness of the gospel. The gospel is not just that Jesus died for your sins. In fact Paul says without the resurrection we are to pitied of all people and are still in our sins. Explain to him salvation through resurrected life.” Salvation is receiving the Life of Jesus.
Forgiveness does not bring life and you need new life. You need a new heart. Forgiveness does not give you a new heart. Jesus gives you a new heart. His resurrection gives you a new heart. Explain that as solidly as you can because then a person will come to understand that they were not saved. You are not saved by just by accepting his death for you. There is a good possibility that you can then ask that person, that now that you have explained the fullness of the gospel, do you want to accept the fullness of the gospel. Are you ready to accept the living Christ to come into your heart and to do something for you? Forgiveness by itself is not going to do anything for you except keep you as a forgiven lost person. It’s a good idea to start there with a person. That is the difficulty. For a person has no power to live the kind of life they want to live because a person does not have the power of God living in them to do so.
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