– If you belong to a family, which is everyone who has a pulse, then you know that in life – plans change. Families must be flexible. At SPBC, we were supposed to move on to a next theme in Mark, however I sensed the Lord leading us back to last week’s topic of evangelism. Our church family needs to be reminded of this topics importance and none other than the Great Commission:
- Matthew 28:18-20 “Jesus said, ‘All authority has been given to me. Therefore, go and make disciples, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to observe all things I have commanded you. And, behold, I am with you always even to the end of the age.”
– Today we’re going to look beyond personal evangelism and more toward group evangelism. In other words, how we carry out the Great Commission together.
– Last week the 4 friends brought a paralytic to Jesus and
Mark 2:5 “And when Jesus saw their faith, he said, son, your sons are forgiven.”
– Sometimes it takes the faith and work of multiple persons to bring someone to Jesus.
– When you work together with a group of people tasks and assignments become more complex and challenging. Yet, that is precisely what God has called His church to do.
- Have Team Leaders stand at opposite ends of sanctuary. How will they link? Multiple members holding hands to connect them.
EXAMINE Mark 2:5, 6:30-44
Together Evangelism happens by spending time with Jesus (6:30-34).
A disciple is a person who observes, learns, follows and imitates their teacher. The Disciples spent time with Jesus and did the works He commanded (Mark 3:14-15). The more time they spent with Jesus the more they learned to catch His passion for God and for people. They saw that Jesus loved people as sheep without a shepherd. They saw that Jesus spent time with all sorts of people from self-righteous religious people to sinful irreligious people (Mark 1:38, 2:17). The next point shows that the Disciples had to learn how to be filled up with Jesus and allow Him to be poured out into others.
As disciples of Jesus spend time with Jesus they will be compelled to reach out and share God’s love with those around them. In another Gospel, Jesus told Peter, “If you love me, feed my sheep.” And later when Peter was challenged by the religious leaders to stop preaching the gospel, Luke records, “They [religious leaders] saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated, common men, and they were astonished. And they recognized that they had been with Jesus…[and Peter and John said] for we cannot but speak of what we have seen and heard [in Jesus]” (Acts 4:13, 20).
“For the love of Christ compels us… to be ambassadors for Christ” (2 Corinthians 5:14a, 20a).
ð Are you spending time with Jesus, knowing and relating to Him?
Together Evangelism happens by creating environments with Jesus (6:35-37).
As mentioned previously, the Disciples were learning that spending time with Jesus will result in sharing His heart for others. However, initially when they saw the crowd of people they were apathetic. They told Jesus to send them away to find their own food. Think about that attitude. These Disciples were with the Messiah, the One who proclaimed the kingdom of God is at hand (1:15); the One who called people to repentance, faith and discipleship (1:15-17); the One who came to preach, heal and forgive to broken sinners. These Disciples should have expected Jesus was going to do some sort of miracle in helping and bringing hope to the crowd. And if so, they should have worked to create a welcoming environment for the people.
YET, instead they were apathetic. Why? Perhaps it is because they allowed their relationship with Jesus to become overly familiar. Perhaps they came to see their relationship with Jesus and ministry with others as mere routine. They overlooked people as those for whom Jesus came. Instead of seeing people they saw problems.
ð At SPBC, we must become a place that sees people not problems.
- Sees 30K in SP
- Sees multiple visitors each week at SPBC
- Sees what visitors look for in a church
- Friendly church – Greeters at all doors & welcome center
- Friends inside church – greet, meet and eat (deeper community)
- Friends outside church (wider community – High 5 Relationships)
- Family: growing in marriage, care for kids
- Nursery workers
- SS Teachers
- YM leaders
- Marriage mentors
- Family Ministries
- Is your faith real, even when it costs you personally? People are watching.
- Do we understand that people’s problems are means toward faith, seeing God answer the spiritual through the physical? Evangelism goes beyond winning a convert to having compassion for a persons physical life as well as their eternal soul. This means removing dichotomy between physical and spiritual needs.
ð At SPBC, we must become a place that thinks glocally (Global & Local)
- Local: Community Organizations: Schools, Businesses, Fire/Police Squads
- Regional: SP Crisis Pregnancy Center, Baltimore Open Door, BCMD
- Global: NAMB, IMB, TBD
Together evangelism happens by surrendering resources to Jesus (6:38-44).
While the disciples wanted to send the crowd away, Jesus wanted the disciples to feed them. They found five loaves of bread and two fish, meager resources to feed a crowd over 5000 (perhaps 10-15K). Yet, Jesus blessed the food and instructed the Disciples to distribute the food. All the people ate to their full and there were even leftovers; in fact 12 baskets of food, perhaps 1 basket for each disciple to collect as a memory for future faith.
We must realize that evangelism is not about buildings or budgets. It’s about surrendering all that we have at the hands of Jesus for Him to multiply. God wants our faith to rely on Him not ourselves.
ð At SPBC, we must be a place that never discounts God.
ð Missionary William Carey, “Expect great things from God, Attempt great things for God.”
“Come, everyone who thirsts, come to the waters; and he who has no money, come, buy and eat! Come buy wine and milk without money and without price. Why do you spend your money for that which is not bread and your labor for that which does not satisfy? Listen diligently to me, and eat what is good, and delight yourselves in rich food.” Isaiah 55:1-2
 The reference to “faith” is significant. Several other times Mark associated it with miracles (5:34; 9:23; 10:52), and its importance in the Gospel generally has already been affirmed in the commentary on 1:15. Probably the reference is to the faith of the four who went to such lengths to get the paralytic before Jesus, although the faith of the paralytic himself should not be excluded. Brooks, J. A. (2001, c1991). Vol. 23: Mark (electronic e.). Logos Library System; The New American Commentary (58). Nashville: Broadman & Holman Publishers.
 See article http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2007/july/30.42.html and more specifically, http://www.glocal.net/t-model/ as well as http://www.theresurgence.com/jd_greear_2008-01-31_evangelical_churches_in_community_ministry