Today we are going out into the streets of Oslo for an hour in groups of two to evangelize. Before going out we had a basic teaching on evangelizing, making sure we get across the message of the gospel because that is where the power is. The major points of creation, the fall of man, redemption - our sin is paid for, and the choice to receive the ‘ticket’ to heaven - receiving Jesus as our Lord and Savior.
1. In the beginning when God created man their relationship was perfect.
2. Then the devil came and tempted Eve into eating the apple. God did not want this to happen, and even warned Adam and Eve but man was disobedient and this let war, sickness, ect into the world. Now man and God no longer have a perfect relationship because God is perfect and holy while man is not. A perfect being cannot be with one who is not. Even just a little sin messes up everything. It is like if you put one little drop of poison in a glass of water, it poisons the whole glass. So the only way to get back to God is if we are perfect, which is impossible. This is where Jesus comes in!
3. God sent Jesus who showed us how we should be - He never went against God. God placed all of our sin on Jesus and when He died on the cross He took away all of our sin. Now our sin is paid for. It is like we each have a free ticket to heaven.
4. Then the final question is whether or not we chose to receive His life in exchange for our own. “If we say that we have never sinned, we make him a liar and his word is not in us.” (1 John 1:12) We have a choice whether to live for ourselves or for Jesus. If we choose to live for ourselves, without Jesus, then will have to pay for our own sins but if we give our life to Jesus, admitting we can’t do it on our own and accept Him, then His blood covers all of our sins and we are pure and blameless before the Lord so we can have an unhindered relationship with Him. - Crazy how simple it is!
The major thing we needed to realize is that faith comes from hearing the gospel not from being around Christians. We need to be bold, unashamed and share His Word because that is where the power is. Whether or not a person wants to believe it, it is the truth (just like gravity) - so though we respect others we do have the truth so we must not hold that back. (we must not compromise, not even a little - it is truth).
After the teaching I went out with a second (or 3rd) year girl. I guess she wanted to make sure I jumped right in because she didn’t really talk at all, it was all on me. First we went to the train station and I started to a couple of backpackers. They turned out to be students from Belgium. We talked at first about school then when they asked me why I was here I was able to talk about God and what He had done in my life. I asked them if they had any relationship with God. The guy said that he did not believe in God and that the youth in Europe didn’t need a god. He was very matter of fact. I asked him if I told him a little more and he said sure, he seemed pretty open but then a group of his friends came up and they had to go. Then I saw a young girl sitting on the steps listening to music and so I sat down next to her and asked her what she was listening to. We started talking and I found out she was 18 from a small town near Oslo and was waiting for her boyfriend. She said I could keep her company until he got there. When she found out why I was in Oslo her face instantly changed. I asked her if she had any beliefs towards God and she told me proudly that she was an atheist. I asked her why, and she said because she is very logical. I said actually that I am too, that I have a degree in engineering and in law. Then I asked her if she has every heard of CS Lewis, which she said yes. So I told her she should check out “Mere Christianity.” At that point her boyfriend came up and she practically ran away from me. Then from there we went into the train station and sat down on some chairs. We weren’t really sure who to talk to (especially since the last two people tried to get away from me as fast as they could - but it is okay because I know some seeds were planted). As we were sitting I noticed a guy behind me looking at a train ticket. I started thinking about how random people have approached me while I’ve traveled to talk about nothing really important & I do have something very important to say so it was silly not just saying it. So I turned around and asked the boy where he was going. We chatted for a little while and once I told him what I was doing in Oslo his face changed as well. He said he did not believe in God either, that he didn’t really think about it. Then he had to leave and catch his train. Even though I didn’t get to pray with anyone, I still think it went well for my first time out!
I didn’t write about this, but last week we had a really good teaching entitled, “Your Daily Life with God.” I want to share a few key points with you.
1. Daily Love Relationship - steady growth in our relationship with God depends on your daily life (like with any relationship, it takes time to get to know each other). What is most important is not where you are right now (may seem like you are so far from where you want to be with God) but where you are headed (clear direction and one step at a time). Jesus took any hindrance between us and God. God is a person and like any relationship a friendship develops over time: starts with knowledge or them, spending time with them, deciding whether you can trust them and if so developing a more intimate relationship and turns into love. If you don’t spend time together this cannot develop.
a. What I really liked was when we looked at Luke 10:27 “You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength, and with all your mind. And you must love your neighbor as yourself.”
i. Looking at this passage it says basically we should love God with everything we have. But then it says to also love our neighbor. So if you give everything (all your love) how do you have anymore to give? So then we looked at Romans 5:5 “Now this hope does not disappoint us, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.”
1. This says God pours His love into us. If we have emptied all of our love out to Him it allows His perfect, supernatural love to fill us completely. So then when we love our neighbors & ourselves it is with God’s love! Very cool!
2. So it starts with God loving us without us having to do anything (over even deserving it but simple because we are His creation) - “This is love: not that we have loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the atoning sacrifice for our sins.” (1 John 4:10)
a. Then the second step is our response - to love Him with everything we have. This is automatic when we truly know and His experience His love for us.
b. Then that allows the Holy Spirit to pour out His love into our hearts and His love to flow out of us to those around us.
3. If you don’t know this love, pray that the Holy Spirit will reveal the cross to you - the love that Jesus displayed to us when He laid down His life for us in order that we may live with Him.
ii. Therefore, Jesus cleared the way from any hindrance in our relationship with God except for fear, because fear causes us to draw back. However, if we spend time in a daily relationship with Him then that fear will melt away as we experience His perfect Love.
1. If you carry that love & freedom in you, you can be free all the time. If you don’t really know Him as a friend, a love relationship, it won’t have the same impact on you and those around you because then it is just religious knowledge of Him. It is all about whether He knows you and you Him (b/c of that relationship) and out of that fruit will come but our focus and purpose is not about that fruit - we were created to fellowship with God. Seek first His kingdom…
2. Bottom line: Just love Him & let Him love you and He will change you. Be like David and choose to draw near to God no matter what, even if you are feeling down go to Him, draw from the well of living water even if you feel nothing, know God is listening and loving you.
2. Deny yourself daily
a. Then Jesus called the crowd to himself along with his disciples and said to them, “If anyone wants to follow me, he must deny himself, pick up his cross, and follow me continually. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake and for the gospel will save it.(Matt 8:34-35)
i. This is the only way to really follow Him because you can’t really follow Him unless you walk where He does. It is to lose all control (preference, dreams) not just desire but to lay it all down, lost it all to him. This does not mean you disappear as a person but give it under the Lordship of Jesus. He is our Savior and King so you want to bow down to Him everyday because of WHO He is and do whatever He says no mater what people say or think.
ii. Gal 2:20 “I no longer live, but Christ lives in me, and the life that I now live in the flesh I live by the faithfulness of the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.”
3. Daily forgiveness - love each other deeply for love covers a multitude of sins (1 Peter 4:8): If you have love in your heart you won’t be so bothered with people. If you love people you will see good things in them and love them despite their weakness. So let love rule. Eph 4:26 in anger do not sin. Every day is its own day do not let the sun go down while you are still angry. Make sure things don’t build up. Let each day finish and now the next day is a new day, new grace - let go of whatever happened the previous day - completely new slate.
4. Daily renewal - need to feed your spirit well with the word of God. 2 Cor 4:16
a. Even though we are covered by the blood of Jesus we can accumulate dirt because we are walking in this world (so via movies, music, those around us, etc) so we need daily renewal. If we stop eating we die. If we stop eating healthy it is not good for development. This is the same with the Word of God which is our daily bread.
5. Daily Prayer & Worship - we are designed to fellowship daily
a. Heb 10:19 - into His presence with boldness
b. Matt 26 - says when you pray (not if you pray)
c. Where your treasure is so will your heart be - #1 battle field is your prayer time. We need to give everything to Him and hold nothing back.
6. Daily Thankfulness - if not thankful for what we have right now how can God bless us with more. If stay thankful then have complaints have a hard time getting in. It keeps your heart soft, and not so occupied by self. The joy of the Lord is our strength.
7. Daily Boldness - this is not to never be scared but to act boldly even when you don’t feel like it. We decide our lifestyle. We are dead and crucified with Jesus. Jesus is in me. He is bold. If I identify with Jesus then by nature I am bold also. Tell yourself, “I will do this with the help of God,” despite your own shortcomings but because God told you to do it. We are each sent out by Jesus to fulfill His purpose and mission. When we do a task boldly it draws out the best in us - Jesus. It is okay to make a mistake, in fact we all will, but you need to leave them behind and continue in your mission. Boldness is not about showing yourself but about Jesus, doing it for the Lord and He will maximize it. Boldness releases faith because you are reaching out to God. Faith in the Holy Spirit in you, anoints your life as you draw from your Spirit. Christ is in you, so act boldly in who you am in God.
8. Daily Passion
I didn’t mean to write that much of the teaching but it was all so good I couldn’t help but share it. I hope it blesses you as it did me!
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