Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread,"
Everyone who believes the Bible teaching of the second coming of Jesus must also believe that something great must happen before He can come again: "This gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come" (Matt. 24:14). It is commonly understood that this means huge expenditures of money in public meetings and TV presentations using state-of-the-art electronics. Wonderful work; deserves our offerings. But could it be that the Bible teaches a more effective method of "evangelism," one that we have "in a great degree" overlooked?
It can be summed up in one statement Jesus made near the end of His ministry: "On the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, 'If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said [Song of Solomon 4:12-15], out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.' ... This He spoke concerning the Spirit, whom those believing in Him would receive" (John 7:37-39).
This means that the humblest person who "believes in Jesus" will become "a fountain of gardens, a well of living waters, and streams from Lebanon." Unconsciously, in an unstudied way, he will pour forth the ultimately powerful message. It will be that "the love of Christ constrains us" (2 Cor. 5:14), compels, motivates, empowers, makes effective the agent who cannot help but communicate the message--all with one proviso, that he "believe in Jesus." That's what Jesus said in John 7.
It sounds deceptively simple. For two millennia people have "believed in Jesus," haven't they? Yet in spite of all our best efforts, the task gets bigger all the time. There must be something about what it means to "believe in Jesus" that we haven't yet grasped. If that "well of living water" is not flowing out from within our soul as the ultimate evangelism, it's obvious: we haven't yet learned to "believe" in the sense that Jesus meant when He spoke on that "last day ... of the feast." (More next time.)
--Robert J. Wieland
From the "Dial Daily Bread" Archive: August 12, 2004.
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