For I have come to call not those who think they are righteous, but those who know they are sinners. (Matthew 9:13)
Relate: “You’re a lying, thieving, cheating, murderous adulterer.” Did anyone ever tell you this? If they did, how open do you think you would be to want to listen to anything more that jerk would have to say? Believe it or not, there is a method of evangelism out there that leads to the point where the “evangelist” is saying this exact thing to their “mark”. The saddest thing about it is that they call this evangelism approach “The Way of the Master”. Garbage. Hogwash. Telling someone how pitiful, filthy, and wretched they are is not evangelism, it is schadenfreude.
The true way of the Master is to touch the leper. The true way of the Master is to befriend and share a meal with the cheating rich scoundrel who has no friends. “Come down out of that tree. Let’s do lunch.” The way of the Master is to go to the party thrown by an IRS agent and populated by prostitutes. The way of the Master is to shame the accusers away and then say to the adulteress, “I don’t condemn you. Now go and sin no more.” The way of the Master is not to browbeat someone into repentance but to embrace them with love until they begin to embrace the Master right back.
React: I say this but some who have been reading me for a while might be thinking, “Wait a minute. When the daily reading was all about the Ten Commandments, you jumped all over how you have messed up on each and every one of them.” That’s right, I have. That is the whole point.
If I were to sit down with someone who does not yet know Christ I would gladly walk with them how I have fallen and failed over and over again. Then I would share how God knew I would do this. He saw each one of my acts of rebellion against Him. Then He showed His love for me by dying on that cross anyways. I am horrible sinner. He is beautiful Savior. If the person I am sharing this with were to be thinking, “Wow, this guy is really messed up.” They are not yet ready for the gospel. If they instead think, “You know what? I’m just as bad as this guy is. Worse even.” That person is ready. The Holy Spirit is pursuing them and it is never my place to try and do His work by browbeating someone into the Kingdom. Jesus did not come to call those that think they are righteous but rather those who know they are sinners. All too often we flip it. We keep trying to puff ourselves up as righteous by trying to convince others of how sinful they are.
I am so grateful for Your grace. Although I am so undeserving You lavished it on me. I am so thankful for Your love. Although I am so unlovable, You still thought I was to die for. All too often I allow the grace and love You have poured on me to get to my head. I begin to get this delusion that somehow I earned it. No. Keep me humble, Lord. Help me to be so grateful for what You have done that I cannot but share the true gospel, My poverty and Your greatness with everyone I meet.