Last time, we looked at transcending individual church denominations, (without judgment), to come together as a cohesive peaceful and loving force for Christ and His kingdom. This time lets investigate how we can increase the quantity of our godly company.
First, we must do away with our opinion of the quality of the people that we meet:
And He has made from one blood every nation of men to dwell on the face of all the earth, and has determined their preappointed times and boundaries of their dwellings, so that they should seek the Lord, in the hope that they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each of us… Acts 17:25 – 27. NKJV
Everyone is created by God; and He wants every one of them to embrace His salvation. Jehovah does not turn anyone away. Neither should we. Otherwise, we are practicing judgment. Judgment can be applied towards actions, but never towards the people who act. We don’t know how life may have stepped on them. Remember, it’s not about what we think about others, it’s about what God thinks.
This is just as relevant in our treatment of brothers and sisters in Christ who may have fallen out of faith, or, are practicing their faith in the framework of ‘situational ethics;’ i.e. considering some sins as being acceptable.
We must lovingly approach them to see where their attachment to the world remains, how they think a particular sin behavior benefits them, to search for any hidden roots of pride or envy, or to discover how they might perceive that God has let them down.
Dear brothers and sisters, if another believer is overcome by some sin, you who are godly should gently and humbly help that person back onto the right path. And be careful not to fall into the same temptation yourself. Gal. 6:1 NLT
We need to show them the grace of God in our behavior towards them. Believe me, they already feel convicted. We must try to follow the example as our Lord: extending mercy and compassion, using the word of God to bring healing love and restoration, and pray with them that they might be in right relationship with God again – to the God who always forgives. Then they can continue on in their life on the highest and best path, with the indwelling guidance of the Holy Spirit.
The second way we can increase the quantity of our godly company is to answer our ‘Great Commission,’ to win new souls to Christ. Everything we’ve looked at so far, should be incorporated with our approach to a secular potential child of God as well; except this time, we must begin with a clean slate.
We must ask them about themselves first. What is their occupation? What do they do for fun? Ask about their family. How do they think life is treating them? Get to know them and procure a feeling of how the world has shaped this individual.
Keep in mind that they may not even know that they practice sin:
Who perceives his unintentional sins? Cleanse me from my hidden faults. Ps. 19:12 CSB
Then ask the big questions (e.g. How did life start? What happens when you die?). For a very detailed treatise on the gospel and the giving of it, see my previous posts Christ’s Foot Soldiers, posted from 6/5/19 – 7/14/19.
The irony is, that if you are lovingly speaking the gospel, the sinner will feel convicted; but that’s what is required so that they can see the need for salvation.
Some may even take offense, because they don’t want to give up their lifestyle. God will gather who He gathers. We must be purposeful in our zeal, because an eternal separation is coming.
If they are unwilling, they will live out eternity in the presence of their master – the accuser. At that point, you’ve done your best. It’s between them and God. You must separate yourself from a willful sinner:
“As you go into the house, give it your greeting [that is, ‘Peace be to this house’]. If [the family living in] the house is worthy [welcoming you and your message], give it your blessing of] peace [that is, a blessing of well-being and prosperity, the favor of God]. But if it is not worthy, take back your blessing of peace. Whoever does not welcome you, nor listen to your message, as you leave that house or city, shake the dust [of it] off your feet [in contempt, breaking all ties].” Mt 10:12 – 14. AMP
“Depart now from the tents of these wicked men, and touch nothing that belongs to them, or you will be swept away in all their sin.” Nm. 16:26 NASB
‘Sinners cannot walk with Saints.’ Charles G. Finney
“Don’t waste what is holy on people who are unholy. Don’t throw your pearls to pigs. They will trample the pearls, then turn and attack you.” Mt. 7:6 NLT
Ah, but for those willing to embrace Jehovah and the gift of His Son, hallelujah. God has opened their hearts through you, so that they can understand what must be done to live the life that opens the door, so that the Holy Spirit can take residence:
For by these He has bestowed on us His precious and magnificent promises [of inexpressible value], so that by them you may escape from the immoral freedom that is in the world because of disreputable desire, and become sharers of the divine nature. For this very reason, applying your diligence [to the divine promises, make every effort] in [exercising] your faith to develop moral excellence, and in moral excellence, knowledge (insight, understanding), and in your knowledge, self-control, steadfastness, and in your steadfastness, godliness. 2 Pt. 1:4 – 6. AMP
Yes, if you cry out for insight, and lift up your voice for understanding; if you seek skillful and godly wisdom as you would silver and search for her as you would hidden treasures; then you will understand the [reverent] fear of the LORD [that is, worshiping Him and regarding Him as truly awesome] and discover the knowledge of God.
For the LORD gives [skillful and godly] wisdom; from His mouth come knowledge and understanding. He stores away sound wisdom for the righteous [those who are in right standing with Him]; He is a shield to those who walk in integrity [those of honorable character and moral courage], He guards the paths of justice; and preserves the way of HIs saints (believers).
Then you will understand righteousness and justice [in every circumstance] and integrity and every good path. Pr. 2:3 – 9. AMP
Pretty soon, you’ll have godly company on every side…
Goodnight and God bless.