Thursday, January 5, 2012

Why I'm Not A Fan of Tracts

A tract. In our Christian circles it's something that gives the gospel message to another human being. Not a huge fan of these and I'll give two reasons why. But first, I understand that people can be saved by reading one of these. And praise God for that! And I realize that this is just my opinion and others may come to a different conclusion, which is fine. Not something worth arguing for. Just thought I'd throw my two cents in for what's it worth.

First reason I am not a fan of tracts would be that Jesus called the church (the people of God) to reach the lost. Yes, a tract can be used to do that. But I firmly believe that God created us to relate to people, build relationships with them, and give them the gospel. In the early church I don't see tracts. I see people passionately caring about a lost world and going to them in their culture to build relationships with them to lead them to Christ. Why has anything changed?

That leads me into my second point being that building a meaningful relationship with someone is a lot harder than just handing them a tract and walking away and never seeing them again. Why should that person listen to you and what the tract says? They have no idea who you are. Think of it this way: when someone hands you a flyer, what's your reaction? You probably take it out of courtesy, then dispose of it and the next available trash can. Maybe without even glancing at it. But on the other hand, when someone cares enough about you to invite you to something or let you in on some knowledge they have acquired, you're more apt to listen to them right? It's the same way with unbelievers. You build that meaningful relationship with them to where there's a degree of trust, you have a golden opportunity to share Jesus with them.

So, in conclusion. Please don't get me wrong. I'm not against tracts, I just feel that we, as the church, ought to utilize the meaningful relationships we have to the fullest. Work at those relationships with unbelievers to bring it to the point where they respect you enough to listen to what you have to say. It's a lot harder than just handing out a tract, but it seems to be the Biblical way in my opinion. So strive to build relationships with unbelievers and for those you come in contact with only briefly, a tract may be the best option. But don't neglect building a relationship with someone in your circles out of laziness or fear, cause it's sin.

Much love,

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Jesus Is The True and Better - Tim Keller

Jesus is the true and better Adam who passed the test in the garden and whose obedience is imputed to us.

Jesus is the true and better Abel who, though innocently slain, has blood now that cries out, not for our condemnation, but for acquittal.

Jesus is the true and better Abraham who answered the call of God to leave all the comfortable and familiar and go out into the void not knowing wither he went to create a new people of God.

Jesus is the true and better Isaac who was not just offered up by his father on the mount but was truly sacrificed for us. And when God said to Abraham, “Now I know you love me because you did not withhold your son, your only son whom you love from me,” now we can look at God taking his son up the mountain and sacrificing him and say, “Now we know that you love us because you did not withhold your son, your only son, whom you love from us.”

Jesus is the true and better Jacob who wrestled and took the blow of justice we deserved, so we, like Jacob, only receive the wounds of grace to wake us up and discipline us.

Jesus is the true and better Joseph who, at the right hand of the king, forgives those who betrayed and sold him and uses his new power to save them.

Jesus is the true and better Moses who stands in the gap between the people and the Lord and who mediates a new covenant.

Jesus is the true and better Rock of Moses who, struck with the rod of God’s justice, now gives us water in the desert.

Jesus is the true and better Job, the truly innocent sufferer, who then intercedes for and saves his stupid friends.

Jesus is the true and better David whose victory becomes his people’s victory, though they never lifted a stone to accomplish it themselves.

Jesus is the true and better Esther who didn’t just risk leaving an earthly palace but lost the ultimate and heavenly one, who didn’t just risk his life, but gave his life to save his people.

Jesus is the true and better Jonah who was cast out into the storm so that we could be brought in.

Jesus is the real Rock of Moses, the real Passover Lamb, innocent, perfect, helpless, slain so the angel of death will pass over us. He’s the true temple, the true prophet, the true priest, the true king, the true sacrifice, the true lamb, the true light, the true bread.

The Bible’s really not about you—it’s about him.