Soul Winning

“The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life, and whoever captures souls is wise.” -Proverbs 11:30

I was at a restaurant with the man that I consider my pastor recently. Every time we go to eat, it has become a practice to share the gospel with our server. And I’m grateful, because I hope to be a better soul-winner. The conversation with our server, generally goes like this,

“If you were to die today, would you go to heaven?”

“Yes, I believe I would.”

‘Why?”

“Because I’m a pretty good person!”

“The Bible says, “None is righteous, and all have fallen short of God’s glory’ So, in reality none is good. And all are condemned.”

“Well, that’s not good news!”

“You’re right, but do you know what God did for guilty sinners in order for them to be reconciled to Him?”

“What did He do?”

“He sent His Son, to live the life we couldn’t, and poured out His wrath on Him, so that whoever believes in Him might not perish, but have everlasting life. He was our substitute. He died the death we deserved.”

“Well, what do I do?”

“You place your faith in Him, you trust His work. You repent, and you believe. Can we pray with you?”

“Sure!”

“Lord, we lift up this person to you, knowing that you are the only one that can regenerate a heart. You are the only one who can cause someone to be born-again. We thank you for Your precious Son, who did what we could never do. In Jesus name, amen.”

Now, these conversations don’t always go this smoothly, but you get the idea. We are called to be soul-winners. We are called to be fishers of men. We cannot be of the high-Calvinist camp that puts their feet up, while the world goes to hell. We cannot drive by with our head down saying to ourselves, “If they are elect, God will save them.” We have a duty, and a responsibility to be evangelistic. Although God is sovereign, and none that He has purchased will be lost, this does not negate the fact that He calls us to share the gospel.

In Charles Spurgeon’s book, ‘The Soul Winner’ he shares what soul winning is, and is not. Here’s what he says,

“We will begin our discussions regarding this subject by considering the question: What is it to win a soul? This may be answered best by first describing what it is not. Soul winning is not accomplished by stealing members from already-established churches, just to train them to utter our peculiar pronunciation of Shibboleth (Judges 12:4-6) Instead, soul winning means bringing souls to Christ rather than making converts to our assembly. Sheep stealers beyond the walls of the church are not acting in a brotherly fashion.”

Soul winning is not sheep-stealing. This is not about a numerical notch on the belt each Sunday. Shepherding sheep from another fold into our stalls in order to justify ourselves in a business meeting is not the essence of soul winning. We are joining our Lord in His mission to seek, and save those that are lost

To be a soul winner, you must have a broken heart. Spurgeon said it this way,

“The kind of sermon likely to break the hearer’s heart is the same kind which first broke the preachers heart. The sermon which is likely to reach the heart of the hearer is the one which comes straight from the heart of the preacher.”

I pray the Lord would raise up fisherman who weep as they fish. I pray the Lord would raise up pastors who rejoice in the progress of their sheep. I pray the Lord would raise up sheep, who not only hear, but move. In Jesus name,

Amen.

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