My notes of Matt Chandler’s message at T4G 2014.
After coming out of the locker room in high school I had a friend say to me, “I need to tell you about Jesus, when do you want to do that.” In my home growing up I saw really messed up Christianity and so this friend named Jeff was the first real Christian I ever met. He brought me to church and I thought it was goofy the way youth group was, but I kept wanting to come back. I don’t know why I wanted to keep coming, but God was wooing me.
I am here because someone was unashamed.
One of my fears is that when we hear that there is growing hostility toward Christians in our culture, that we do not shrink back from being bold and unashamed.
Can you get your head around that there were no dollars to be made out of sinful gain? Can you imagine this? Imagine this riot that breaks out because of preaching the gospel. Have you heard of any recent church plants that were started and a riot breaks out because they closed down all the strip clubs and businesses of ill repute?
Then we see later on that the weather changes.
2 Timothy 1:8
His first bit of encouragement is that Timothy should step in to suffering and know that it is coming.
If you knew this was going to be on your job description, then you would have to be called because who really wants this. Celebrity pastors is crazy because everyone wants to preach Pauline theology, but nobody wants Pauline pain.
You want to be like Moses? Jeremiah? Peter?
We will suffer. You still like the bible? You still like Kevin Deyoung’s message?
Paul gives Timothy 4 things to enable him to be bold in an acidic culture:
1. Remember God Saved Him And Called Him
Paul has a pretty crazy testimony. He was an insolent opponent of Christianity and a violent man. He never got over his testimony and recovered from the fact that he was saved by Christ.
I often times wonder why I kept going back to church with my friend Jeff. I had a thousand reasons to think it was nonsense but God kept wooing me and I need to remember this.
2. Remember That Evangelism Is Not About You
The more that evangelism is about you, then you will always get in the way and always feel inadequate. So get over yourself. God is awesome and our job is to be obedient.
God is amazing in salvation, not you. God saves and not our intellectual arguments.
3. Remember That Death Is Dead
The most free you will ever be is when you realize that dying is gain. Ravi Zacharius once said, “what are you going to say to Lazarus that would frighten him.” How would he ever be afraid of deaith, he has been there before.
4. Remember Who You Were Saved From
I like to go to Job 38 when I feel sick, inadequate, when I am scared, when I am feeling full of myself.
I go to this place, because the answer to Job 38 is … NOT ME! I did not create the world and sustain it.
God and God alone saves. No program and no system will produce a zeal for evangelism like knowing who saved you.
2 Timothy 1:13
Do not sidestep suffering. Do not drift from sound doctrine.
The weather is changing and air is acidic, but God will prevail and God will not surprised.
I don’t think it is as complicated as we have made it. Don’t be a beast in the pulpit and afraid of your neighbor. Be a model for your people and share the gospel with our neighbors.
We believe that right now there are people who are out there right now who have been bought with the blood of Christ.
I know there are costs for sharing the gospel, but in 10,000 years we will not care.