Our Calling, Our Responsibility

In 1 Corinthians Paul spends a good deal of time explaining his responsibility as a Believer being different from those in the cultures around him. We are to be the light in the surrounding darkness. Your friend is an Egyptian, perhaps a Muslim who follows an idol, a false god. And here is what Paul writes, “About eating food offered to idols, then, we know that “an idol is nothing in the world,” and that “there is no God but one.” For even if there are so-called gods, whether in heaven or on earth—as there are many “gods” and many “lords” —  yet for us there is one God, the Father. All things are from Him, and we exist for Him. And there is one Lord, Jesus Christ. All things are through Him, and we exist through Him.” 1 Corinthians 8:4-6 HCSB.

Personally, I lived many years serving as a missionary in Latin America where Catholicism is the ‘state church.’ The Catholic religion holds sway over the hearts and minds of most people there. However, there are several other Christian missionaries and churches dotting the landscape as well as all sorts of  ‘-isms.’ One never knows what may be found nor where. All sorts of gods are worshiped just as they are in America. America is no different.

Because this is true, please look at what Paul states in 1 Corinthians 9:19-23. “Although I am a free man and not anyone’s slave, I have made myself a slave to everyone, in order to win more people. To the Jews I became like a Jew, to win Jews; to those under the law, like one under the law — though I myself am not under the law—to win those under the law. To those who are without that law, like one without the law—not being without God’s law but within Christ’s law—to win those without the law. To the weak I became weak, in order to win the weak. I have become all things to all people, so that I may by every possible means save some. Now I do all this because of the gospel, so I may become a partner in its benefits.” Perhaps the key statement here is, “I have become all things to all people, so that I may by every possible means save some.” (v. 22.) 55 years ago I began the journey to which God called me, and, indeed, His call included becoming all things to all people wherever I met them. This is the challenge for everyone who claims the Name of Jesus. “

May I suggest that we spend some time with those within our circle of influence learning about who they are and what they believe? Most of the time as we share the Gospel this opportunity is not present for ‘street witnessing’ is a ‘hit and miss’ moment for our subjects will most likely not see us again. But, when there are friends and neighbors involved, the opportunity to know them becomes the most important thing we do in becoming all things to them. Paul writes, “Although I am a free man and not anyone’s slave, I have made myself a slave to everyone, in order to win more people.  To the Jews I became like a Jew, to win Jews; to those under the law, like one under the law—though I myself am not under the law—to win those under the law. To those who are without that law, like one without the law—not being without God’s law but within Christ’s law—to win those without the law. To the weak I became weak, in order to win the weak.” When the Apostle suggests that he became ‘like’ another, he does not suggest we shed our Chrisitan faith, but he is instructing us to know and to understand who these people are in order to be able to share the power of the Gospel with them.

“I am obligated both to Greeks and barbarians, both to the wise and the foolish. So I am eager to preach the good news to you also who are in Rome. For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is God’s power for salvation to everyone who believes, first to the Jew, and also to the Greek. For in it God’s righteousness is revealed from faith to faith, just as it is written: The righteous will live by faith.” Romans 1:14-17. The ball is in your court. You must take some time to learn about this person in order to become all that you can become in order to share the powerful message of truth that can change the heart of your friend.

Do not be discouraged. Over the course of many years and untold opportunities to share my faith, I will suggest that maybe, 2 of every 10 people who heard the message from me made positive decisions and I have no idea how many of them are Believers today. The point is that God only is responsible for the result of His Message and the mission He has called us to. We are the messengers of His Truth and He is the Savior. God Bless you in your journey.

About Bob Williford

Conservative Southern Baptist pastor, missionary, and personal evangelist. An avid supporter of Texas Tech Athletics. Enjoy oil painting, writing and woodworking. My wife, children, and grandchildren are my joy. Reading and writing are great for relaxing......
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