The past week we attended the Christian Camping Association Conference. The speaker was outstanding in preaching, in character and in vulnerability. As I sat down to eat breakfast with our staff members, I realized Chris, the speaker was sitting right next to me. I was thrilled because I wanted to thank him for his message and his willingness to share his testimony with us. Somewhere along the line he asked me, “what do you think the Christian Camping professionals at this conference need to hear tonight when I speak?” He caught me off guard with the question and I didn’t really have a great answer. As I pondered later, I realized I would have encouraged him to tell the leaders in Christian Camping to not drop the Gospel. With all the pressures put on ministries to conform to the culture, along with a myriad of government regulations and restrictions there is a temptation to drop the Gospel…to not ruffle feathers…to not take the time to study and adhere to solid doctrine…to not walk in utter dependence on God, but to rely on “expert strategies” to serve.
The responsibility to “not drop the Gospel” is for all Believers, not just those in ministry. Time is short, people need the truth, not an anemic Christian formula that neither gives God the right to declare what is sin and what is not, nor brings people to their knees in repentance before a Holy God. Jesus said, that the truth would set us free. There are people in desperate need of freedom from addictions, immorality and oppression…they are tanking. They need the Gospel…don’t drop it friends…lovingly offer it to those who don’t know Jesus and live out your faith in a manner worthy of the Gospel.
Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth and the truth will set you free.” John 8:32
“Now repent of your sins and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped away. Then times of refreshment will come from the presence of the Lord, and he will send you Jesus, your appointed Messiah.” Acts 3:19-20 New Living Translation
Purify me from my sins, and I will be clean; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow. Oh, give me back my joy again; you have broken me— now let me rejoice. Don’t keep looking at my sins. Remove the stain of my guilt. Create in me a clean heart, O God. Renew a loyal spirit within me. Do not banish me from your presence, and don’t take your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and make me willing to obey you. Then I will teach your ways to rebels, and they will return to you.” Psalms 51:7-11 NLT
“Whatever happens, conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.” Philippians 1:27a
Jesus, we need your help. Lord, the pressure is on. Help us to have courage and not water down the Gospel to make it more palatable for our friends, and more comfortable for us. Help us to recognize that it is the truth that will help people, not false promises that never came from you. Thank you Jesus that you are always a prayer away. We love you and thank you. In Your Name. Amen”