What Now?

Text: John 20:19-23

April was a month of reflection, celebration, and renewal, commemorating the death and resurrection of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Our text finds the disciples huddled, as it were,  behind shut doors pondering the events of their recently crucified Saviour– vs 20:19  and describes them as fearful,  as the association with Jesus puts them at risk of the same fate as Jesus.  No doubt they were wondering and pondering WHAT NOW?; what do we do now?  Then miraculously Jesus appeared and spoke gently “Peace be unto you”.

Last month I was talking with office staff members and the dialogue turned to a profound question “Why are you a Christian.”  This question prompted thoughts of assessment, what am I doing for Christ? Yes, the same questions that most likely dominated the discussion of the fearful disciples on that evening in antiquity. It is as real today as it was then.

The Easter season in essence puts us in a “spiritual time warp”, placing us back over 2000 years ago, experiencing, reliving and introspecting our future.  I realized this Easter season , more than ever, what Jesus did  for me, and now what can I do for him.  Scripture clearly gives us a charge.  “Then said Jesus to them again, Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me even so send I you” –vs20:21; he breathed the Holy Spirit, the Third Person of the God Head,  upon them, empowering them to go and do his work.

In his Sermon on the Mount, Jesus spoke of the impact that we as believers are to have on the world; “Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candle stick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. Let your light so shine before men that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven”—Matthew 5:14-16.

In the aforementioned “spiritual time warp “we are compelled to internalize the sadness of the crucifixion while yet feeling, at the same time, the joy of his resurrection and consequently our rebirth.  We are rebuffed at the stark inequity of his sentence to death but remembering what is occurring is prophesy.  We have peace because he said it, we have the Holy Ghost because he breathed it upon us, we have hope because Jesus is hope,  and we have assurance because his Word speaks truth,  and provides direction; “I am the way the truth and the life, no man cometh to the Father but by me”–John 14:16.

It is incumbent upon every man, woman, and child to evangelize to all who would hear that Jesus Christ is the light of the world.  Webster defines evangelize as “to preach the Gospel, to convert to Christianity. The late Rev. Dr. D. James Kennedy, writes in his book Evangelism Explosion, “ In His great commission, (Matthew 28: 19-20) Christ did not instruct His disciples to go and make conversions, but to ‘go and make disciples’, while conversions are important and necessary, they must be followed by thorough, biblical disciple-making.  In order to properly disciple new believers, it is not enough merely to know the content of the Gospel; one must share one’s life with them…” In short, your life was converted and now must become an illumination to others.  Remember when Andrew met Jesus he immediately went and found his brother Peter declaring “…We have found him the Messiah, which is being interpreted, the Christ”—John 1:35-41. To this end Dr. Kennedy designed one of the most effective gospel tracts ( an evangelistic message to the unbeliever, similar to a musical tract in the entertainment industry) that I will share with you.   

So, WHAT NOW?, pull out your spiritual flash light, insert your battery (gospel track), check your light bulb (your lifestyle, your walk, your spiritual countenance as viewed by others).  NOW GO TO WORK, bringing light to a darken world, a darken community, a darkened home, and individual lost in darkness.

GOSPEL TRACK

By clicking on the web site address below, you can access the Gospel Track developed by Dr. Kennedy

 http://www.scribd.com/fullscreen/3219816

Yours in Christ,

Dempsey Scott Harrison, Jr.

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