Sunday, May 26, 2024

No Shortcuts to Success in the Lord’s Work

by Shelton Smith

All of us who are in the Lord’s work want to give our best and do our best for the Lord, unless we are very backslidden.

The Bible is Heaven’s Manual on salvation, the doctrines of the Faith, the local church, living the Christian life, the power of God, and all things future. You can and should read it from cover to cover. As you do so, you will not find the details on “How to Succeed at Failing.” There are no itemized lectures on “Forget Success and Be a Flop.”<

You will find numerous accounts of human failure in the Bible; however, they are neither recommended nor commended.

Instead, you’ll find great emphasis on faith, faithfulness and fruitfulness. The matters of salvation, sanctification and the Spirit-filled life are given lots of attention. Preaching, teaching and soul winning are major matters.

When we plant churches and set about to make an impact for Christ in a place, it is not a little assignment. It requires dedication, sacrifice and a lot of hard work. There’s no cheap or discounted way to get it done.

Unfortunately, some men are vulnerable to the hucksters who are always trying to sell some new agenda or some compromised approach.

Being true to God and faithful to scriptural truth can get lost so easily. Getting caught up in a willingness to “do anything to succeed” is a satanic trap.

Let me say it clearly. In the ministry the Lord has entrusted to us, there are no legitimate shortcuts.

Prayer, preaching, teaching, canvassing neighborhoods, soul winning, planting churches, and discipling converts are the scriptural game plan. You can’t improve on the way the Lord designed for His business to be conducted. Give yourself to it, and you’ll be glad you did.

That’s the real definition of faithfulness and success.

The very heart of the independent, fundamental Baptist movement has had these great concepts of God in the forefront through the years. They have worked, and they do work now.

In each issue of the SWORD OF THE LORD, we are carrying the testimony of a pastor and his church who are just going after it and getting it done somewhere in the land. Be sure to read Dr. R. B. Ouellette’s “It Can Be Done” column.

These are great and exciting days. Reaching a town and seeing a church grow have never been easy tasks. Today it may be harder than ever because our world has drifted so far into paganism. But don’t ever forget these two basic truths:


1. The Gospel works!

“For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.”—Rom. 1:16.

2. The Word of God is powerful!

“For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two­edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.”—Heb. 4:12.

So, instead of getting diverted into some scheme or some program that is scripturally off center, let’s give ourselves, let’s hustle, let’s rise early and work late, let’s ask the Lord for His anointing power, and then let’s go out there where the people are and see how many we can round up.

My dear fellow servants of God, it is a divine law. If you sow little, you won’t reap much. If you want to reap much, you must sow much.

No shortcuts! No detours! No drifting! No shifting! No chasing off to pick up the methods of some doctrinally deficient crowd! No! Let’s stick to what is tested and proven! If we please the Lord, we have no license and no liberty to do anything else.

One person at a time! Amen! Do what you can do. Try to win one this week. When you win one, go for two. Just constantly at it! Amen, amen, amen!

From the Editors Notes at Sword of the Lord. Original article can be found under Editor’s Notes at

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