Here’s this month’s Gone Fishin’ Newsletter.
Every month a team from our fellowship at Calvary Wellington heads out to our regular fishing hole, the Naenae Market and Hillary Court shops. There we share the Gospel to those in our immediate community.
Once a month I publish a simple newsletter that is distributed to the fellowship (or for anyone else who stumbles across this website), as a way of encouragement, and as a tool to equip us to be better evangelists.
You can read the last Field Report from 27/8/22/22 here.
Gone Fishin’ Monthly Newsletter – September 2022
“Say to them: ‘As I live,’ says the Lord God, ‘I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but that the wicked turn from his way and live. Turn, turn from your evil ways! For why should you die, O house of Israel?’” (Ezek 33:11)
I pray everyone is keeping well, and enjoying some of the warmer weather we have been experiencing lately. Just as the fresh smells and sights of spring are arriving, let us also search for fresh ways to get the odour of the Gospel out!
There are characteristics of God that give us great pleasure. He is constantly pouring out His grace, and bestowing blessing after blessing on us. Of course, the greatest blessing of all is the giving of His Son to us, granting us eternal life with Him!
However, there are also things about Him that frighten us. Like the threats towards those whose choose to do evil, and refuse to acknowledge Christ and His redeeming work for them. They experience the pleasures of this world just like we do, but there is a hammer of judgement awaiting them after this life.
Yet God says that he takes no delight in the demise of the wicked. He would rather them come to a knowledge of Him. Today we will explore the two ways God warns sinners of their pending demise.
He Uses The Messenger
“Say to them…”
It’s not a coincidence that God used Prophets in the Bible to warn of His judgement. Many, many times He commissions them to steer them from the brink of death, back to the ways of God.
It takes someone with courage to say things people hate to hear. Sinners are entrenched in their wicked ways, fulfilling their greedy, fleshly desires every way they can. Sin can feel so good for a season, whether that season lasts a weekend, or a lifetime.
A loving parent would stop at nothing to ensure their wayward child’s life doesn’t end in ruin, by pleading that they change. This also is the Christians’ call. Sometimes it takes the hard love of an ice-bucket of home truth over the head to snap a person out of their slumber. We need to bite the bullet and do what the church was assigned to do – “go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature” (Mark 16:15).
You know the Good News. You just need to say it. Say it to them.
How then shall they call on them in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher? (Rom 10:14)
He Uses The Message
“…that the wicked turn from his way and live.”
It’s one thing to be available to speak. But equally as important is the message itself.
If we don’t convey the message correctly, we risk giving the wrong information. And if we give the wrong information, people are still lost in their sin. And if people are still lost in their sin, they end up under the threat of God’s wrath. And we definitely don’t want that!
So what is the message? turn from his way and live. It’s not a popular message to hear. It causes anger. It causes offence, and these days, people don’t need much to get offended about to cause a ruckus.
What are these ‘wicked’ things they are to turn from? Basically, anything that offends God; lying, stealing, blasphemy, adultery or murder of the heart – laws He commanded everyone to uphold. These are hard things to confront someone with, but this is a necessary step – to plough the hard ground of the heart, in order to receive the Gospel seed.
When the hearer understands their fate, one of two things will happen:
Self-justification – they will swell with pride, saying they are a good person, and they will be OK on judgement day. What they are really saying is that they are enjoying their sin so much that they are willing to go to hell for it. More ploughing is necessary for this, or it could be that it is not their appointed time for them to be saved. Don’t be too downcast, as it is all in God’s sovereign hands. You are just the messenger, remember!
Godly sorrow – God may cause them to experience a deep sorrow and guilt over their sins. I have occasionally had people break down and cry that they have offended God through their unholy lifestyle. This is when you offer the Gospel seed; that yes, they are evil (just like you), but God sent his Son to earth to take their hell punishment for them. They need to turn from their way and live.
Let’s be willing and obedient to be the messenger. And let’s be willing and obedient to tell the truth!
I’ll see you at my place this Saturday at 10am for prayer before heading out! This week may be a bit different in that we may be distributing fliers for the church holiday program. Anything to get the truth into the right hands, to start a Gospel conversation!
Witnessing Tip: Being available is the first step
When you pray for more harvesters for the harvest,
Be the first to say, like Isaiah, “here am I! Send me!