How far will you go? There were once four men who went to great lengths to bring a friend to Jesus. Their friend was paralyzed and unable to walk, but they believed that Jesus could change his life. They carried the man to the house that Jesus was teaching in, but the crowd of people that had come to see Jesus was so thick, they could not get their friend in the door. Many of us might have given up at this point, but not these four fellows. They were persistent. They made their way, with their paralyzed friend, to the top of the house, and began to dismantle the roof of the house. Where I’m from this is typically considered vandalism. At the very least, I might consider their heroic efforts somewhat extreme; but they wanted to get their friend in the presence of Jesus, and they would stop at nothing.
Our church is joining with fellow Southern Baptists and prayerfully answering the question, Who’s Your One? We realize that the gospel movement is one life at a time. I am curious though, how far will you go to get your friend to Jesus? Will you literally carry him if necessary? Will you tote him to the top of the house and tear the roof off of the house? I know, those ideas sound ridiculous today, so let me ask the question more practically: Will you walk across the street, knock on their door, and invite them to church? Will you offer to let them ride with you to church? Will you offer for them to sit with you? Will you invite them to lunch after church? Will you call them later in the week and offer to answer any questions they may have from the sermon? Will you offer to pray for them? Or pray with them? Will you offer to get them a Bible? How far will you go?
Maybe you answered ‘no’ to many of those questions. My next question then, is do you actually love this person? Do you realize that if Jesus doesn’t save them, if Jesus doesn’t change their life, that they will literally spend eternity in Hell. Does this not scare you? Why will you not carry them to Christ? Why will you not tear the roof off the house to get them to Jesus?
Yes, I realize that I am advocating for an interruption in your life. I know that it might be inconvenient. It will certainly take time and energy. It may even cost you a little money. You may have to clean your house, buy extra groceries, give up your lunch break, and even be seen at church with this person. To which I answer with another question, “So what?”
Why do you think God saved you? And why do you think he has blessed you with the means and resources you have? It certainly isn’t just so that you would have a more comfortable life. God has blessed you so that you may bless others. God gave those four men physical strength so that they could bless others, and they used their strength to carry their friend to Jesus. Is there a better way to use your resources?
Physical strength is such a gift; it can be taken from us in one quick doctor’s visit. How are you using your strength? What about the blessing from God that you live in, your home? Do you open the doors and welcome the stranger, the orphan, or widow? Do you have an extra place set at the table for the hungry? Do you use your vehicle to give a neighbor a ride? Imagine a lost soul buckled safely in the seat next to you as you take them to town, waiting on you to bridge into a gospel conversation with them! God has blessed you so that you might be a blessing to those around you; primarily, so that you can bless them by bringing them to Jesus.
How far will you go? How will you use your resources for the purpose of evangelism? Tear the roof off for the lost soul!
Watch How Far Will You Go? (sermon begins at 29:00)