You read the title correctly; it is not a typographical error. I remembered a story that was told by the pastor of my local church about the M.F.M pastor that was posted to a foreign country, he went with the consuming zeal and passion to propagate the gospel, one of the ways he did it was through street evangelism, the decision that shred his religiosity, he made the greatest mistake of his life by approaching a white man to tell him about Jesus, No, the white man is not a typical African or a Nigerian where we are taught to absorb everything with little or no form of evidence, they have been taught to question things, no matter who or what is saying it, so after the white man listened to the endless charade wrapped around the attempt to win the him for Christ, the white man decided to save the Pastor his breathe by interrupting him with a question, “I have no problem with your gospel, but what are your plans in solving the Nigerian problem? Go back to your country solve their problem, then you can come back and tell me about Jesus” says the white man.
The pastor was so hurt, ashamed and embarrassed he immediately applied for a transfer back to Nigeria, the story was told, 5 years ago, everybody in the church laughed over the issue, and immediately mentally rehearsed how the white man is going to burn in Hell on the last day, because that seems to be our automated response to anybody that disagrees with our pattern of Christianity, our usual defense is how dare they come against the anointed? Because sadly enough our salvation has sharpened our judgmental skill, and shut out the place for love, back to my point.
Nobody could see what was wrong with the way we practice Christianity in this part of the world, where we focused on verbal evangelism than result driven Christianity, it was recently when I began to ponder on the story, I realized the white man was a critical thinker and not the enemy of the gospel, because ideally if the gospel works, it should work in the country and the life of the person propagating it, it should be so evident that it draws people to come seek answer from the source.
Would you buy clothe from a sales man who dresses shabbily? I know your answer already, if we can’t, why do we now separate Christianity from the everyday life? We’ve forgotten evangelism is also advertisement, only that it is backed up with the spirit of God, and not just eloquent of speech. Trust me I watched the constructed roads and bridges in China and Germany, and I was perplexed, if one of those engineer in charge of those bridges talks to you about Jesus, trust me you would listen to him 100 times more than a guy in a clean suit from a Nigeria that their road does not have a pot hole, rather their roads are inside a pot hole, but nobody is making any effort other than blaming the government.
I was dazed when I studied the account of Daniel, Joseph, Moses, David and Deborah in the bible, I realized their relevance was tied to solving a national problem, they solve a national problem either before or while they talked about Jesus Christ, but we the Nigerians seems to be reading the bible backward, it is though we were saved to determine people who won’t make heaven and those that we sit at Abraham bosom, while it is important to talk about Heaven and Hell, I doubt if people will listen if they don’t see a convincing result. I posted something on my facebook wall, I said if majority of people are to follow Christ judging by the results of people or elders that have been following him; majority of people will remain an Atheist, think about that.
I implore us, whenever we pick up our bible to share the gospel, we should also think in term of a problem we can solve, the world needs hope, they need rescue, from the orphaned child on the street, the hungry widow, the frustrated house girl who doesn’t get to sleep till 3am, to the commercial sex worker, the dilapidated educational system, down to the child labour, those are a scream of hope, proffering solutions to those problems will yield result and draw people to Christ thousandth time more than our verbal evangelism, because the only thing verbal evangelism will produce is more talk, till all our energies are drained out, not that we won’t produce result, but they will be far more below expectations.
©Solomon Joseph 1-10-2018 3:28am