by Paul E. Chapman
Did we tell someone about Jesus today? Why do we fail to tell the greatest story ever told?
Here are some common hindrances to soulwinning that we can overcome with God’s Word. As believers, it is our mission to proclaim God’s saving grace through the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ, giving others an opportunity to accept Him as their Saviour. We can choose to be consistent soulwinners once we overcome these obstacles that hinder us.
Some people feel that they cannot win people to Christ because they have not been trained sufficiently. Are those who have not been taught about soulwinning still accountable to do so? Yes! The woman at the well in John 4 was one of the most effective personal soulwinners recorded in the Bible, yet she had no training. As soon as she believed in Jesus, she ran to tell others of the Christ! It does not take a class or a workbook to teach a Christian that God does not want people to go to Hell. At the moment of our salvation, God places a desire within us for other people to be saved. Our conscience demands us to tell others of what Christ has done for us. More importantly, the Holy Spirit directs us from within to proclaim the Gospel to every creature. 1 Corinthians 15:34 says, “Awake to righteousness, and sin not; for some have not the knowledge of God: I speak this to your shame.”
Some fear persecution, losing friends, losing respect, or overcoming shyness. This is the fear of man. In short, these people are more concerned about what man thinks of them than about what God thinks of them.
Proverbs 29:25 – “The fear of man bringeth a snare: but whoso putteth his trust in the LORD shall be safe.”
Matthew 10:28 – “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.”
Psalms 118:6 – “The LORD is on my side; I will not fear: what can man do unto me?”
If we fear man then we do not have the fear of the Lord.
There are two elements to the fear of the Lord. We are afraid to disappoint the Lord because we want to please Him. Also, we are afraid to disobey the Lord because we do not want to be chastised.
Psalms 111:10 – “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: a good understanding have all they that do his commandments: his praise endureth for ever.”
Soulwinners are willing to have uncomfortable conversations in order to save souls. We must push through the awkward moments of introducing people to Christ. The ones who get saved will be eternally grateful for our boldness. The ones who may not listen will at least have had the opportunity to get saved. Their blood will not be on our hands.
Some are ashamed to be associated with Christ. Being ashamed of Christ includes feelings of guilt for wrongdoing, inferiority, wounding of pride, fear of exposure, and awareness of failure. These are ploys of Satan to keep us from speaking of our Saviour. Never forget – It is an absolute privilege that we can even speak the name of Jesus!
Some may feel as though they are not worthy to speak for Christ. We must obey His commands and not live by feeling. Shame makes us feel foolish to speak for Christ in a world that does not believe in Him. Christ has a strong opinion about those who are ashamed of Him.
Mark 8:38 – “Whosoever therefore shall be ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation; of him also shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he cometh in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.”
The shame is in not telling people about our Lord. Our perfect Saviour claims us! How could we not claim Him publicly at every opportunity?
1 Corinthians 15:34 – “Awake to righteousness, and sin not; for some have not the knowledge of God: I speak this to your shame.”
Sin hardens the Christian’s heart and quenches the fire of fervency. The “little” sins that we permit in our lives rob us of the zeal of soulwinning and Holy Spirit power. We mist evict every known sin from our hearts and love God above all. This is the first and great commandment. A heart filled with love for Christ cannot remain silent about the Gospel.
Matthew 24:12 – “And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.”
Satan loves to use the law to restrict God’s work. If it is illegal to speak the name of Christ or share the Gospel should Christians remain silent? We should obey the law when possible; however, if civil laws conflict with God’s laws, we must obey the higher authority.
Acts 4:16-20 – “Saying, What shall we do to these men? for that indeed a notable miracle hath been done by them is manifest to all them that dwell in Jerusalem; and we cannot deny it. But that it spread no further among the people, let us straitly threaten them, that they speak henceforth to no man in this name. And they called them, and commanded them not to speak at all nor teach in the name of Jesus. But Peter and John answered and said unto them, Whether it be right in the sight of God to hearken unto you more than unto God, judge ye. For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard.”
Minds that are thinking carnal thoughts and living by worldly philosophy will not be meditating on eternity and the souls of men. We must have the mind of Christ and see the world as He does to make an eternal impact. Let us consider what we think about in our spare time. Have we considered that everyone we see today will spend eternity in Heaven or Hell?
Romans 8:7 – “Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be.”
1 Corinthians 2:13-16 – “Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual. But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man. For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? but we have the mind of Christ.”
Worldly pleasure, worldly philosophy, cultural traditions, daily living, etc. can be a strong hindrance to soulwinning. Although we have many responsibilities and opportunities in this life, none of them can replace obedience to God’s Word. We only find true joy and fulfillment in living for God. If we choose to obey God’s commandment to proclaim the Gospel to every creature, every area of our lives will be enriched from His abundant blessings on our obedience.
Colossians 2:8 – “Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.”
Any saved person can be a soulwinner!
We can overcome these common hindrances to getting out the Gospel. Here are 4 simple things we can do this week:
- We should schedule a time to go soulwinning. The right kind of church will have designated times on the weekly schedule.
- We can take tracts or church flyers with us and witness throughout the day. Then, we can set a goal to pass out a minimum number of tracts daily.
- We can strive to be soul-conscious as we live our lives. Everyone has a soul. They will spend eternity in Heaven or Hell. We may be their only hope.
- We should ask our pastors about joining a ministry at our churches. Let us be team players. The pastor is praying for more laborers. We can be the answer to his prayer.
In today’s day and age and in certain areas of the country, I’m not sure that knocking on doors unannounced doesn’t do more harm than good in some cases…at least how we’ve done it traditionally where some churches think quantity of doors matters more than quality of interactions with our neighbors. No one randomly knocks on doors any more…I don’t think I’ve had a door to door salesman stop by my house in 10 years. Putting myself in an unsaved person’s shoes, would I be open to hearing what someone had to say about anything if they interrupted my dinner or woke my baby up by knocking or ringing the doorbell? How we witness currently isn’t prescribed in the Bible. Should we rethink how we are currently doing things? Maybe could just stop by with baked goods to welcome them to the neighborhood and leave them with a tract and an invitation to church? I’m a believer that witnessing to those we interact with daily is a more effective witness usually, but I know a lot of people have been saved with traditional knocking on doors.and thank God for it. I’m wondering if those methods are still the most effective way to each the lost?