“WELL, I DECLARE!”

EVANGELISM SEMINAR SERIES – MAY 29, 2011  10:30 AM
First Baptist Church, Earlville, NY  Rev. Jeremy B. Stopford, Pastor
MESSAGE #2 “Well I Declare”  (
1 John 1:1-6)

INTRODUCTION
*  Today’s Special:  “Artist’s Canvas”
I used to work in an art supply store. We sold artists’ canvas by the yard, and you could get it in either of two widths: 36 inches or 48 inches.
Customer: “Can you please cut some canvas for me?”
Me: “Certainly, what width?”
Customer: (confused and slightly annoyed) “Uh, Scissors?”

*  “Who am I?” – a good song;  a good slogan – as it reminds us personally where we would be if God hadn’t shown us His love at the cross.
*  So… the #1 need of the church is _____
Suggested Answer # 1:  get more people to come to church; OR
Suggested Answer # 2: take Jesus to more people outside the church
SO… what do we declare? PRAYER

I.  WE DECLARE A PERSON (1 John 1:1,2)
“Evangelism”:  Def. # 1:  “one beggar telling another beggar where there’s bread”; Def. # 2: “the declaration of God’s good news to the lost with a view to winning them to Jesus Christ”
NOTE WELL:  evangelism is NOT the effect produced (salvation) BUT is simply the declaration.  All God asks of us is to declare His love. HE does the rest: He changes the heart! 
Illus.:  heritage of Gary Anderson, President of Baptist Mid-Missions

II.  WE DECLARE A PROOF (1 John 1:3,4)
*  “Fellowship”  = “2 fellows in a ship”?
*  Fellowship is NOT relationship – relationship is what began at the cross
*  “Fellowship” means to share Jesus together, a PROOF that God has brought you into a relationship with Him!
* See Acts 2:42ff These proved their fellowship!
* The result is (1 John 1:4)  JOY!

III.  WE DECLARE A PRINCIPLE (1 John 1:5)
* The principle is:  “God is light and in Him is no darkness”
*  Declare it by our word and by our life!
* What happens if we don’t declare by our life that God is light? Look at v. 6:  we walk in darkness!
Illus.:  Stedman “’darkness’ is not ‘sinning’;  it is ‘the absence of light’;  to live as if there is no light in you.’”
*  How can we do that? How can we “turn off the light”?  Suggestions (but not necessarily your own): church becomes ritualistic, to the point of your not coming;  don’t see Jesus daily;  don’t walk in Scriptures; don’t examine yourself to see if you are walking in the truth.
*  Our lives are to declare:  “God is light and in Him is no darkness!”

CONCLUSION
:
Jesus as the Evangelist! John 11:25 Using our outline: He declares HIMSELF (“I am the resurrection and the life”)!  He declares PROOF (His resurrection)!  He declares a PRINCIPLE (“do you believe this?” – seeks a personal acknowledgement of truth)!

Look at the fruit!  “I believe that You are the Christ!”
CLOSE IN PRAYER

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