I am currently writing my second-to-last sermon in the book of Acts. The journey through this part of God’s Word has been extraordinary for me; hopefully, for our congregation as well. To see Jesus bring his gospel through Peter and Paul to the world can only birth broken humility and great hope.
One thing I’ve noticed, that I should have learned before: the gospel is simple but it is not simplistic. When he finally got to Rome, Paul called the Jewish leaders to hear his case and then hear the gospel. Rather than lay out before them a five (or forty-five) minute gospel presentation, Paul proclaimed and reasoned with them all day!
Here’s my thought (which reminds me that I’ve been told this already by wiser saints): while it’s good to find ways to communicate the gospel or something about Christ quickly–testimonies, gospel illustrations, etc.–we would do well to work toward much longer evangelistic opportunities. Hours. Days, even. As the wiser saint told me, “I wouldn’t expect someone to buy life insurance after hearing a five minute presentation. How can I expect them to bow before Christ within five minutes?”
To be sure, God can use any gospel message to save souls. But for our part, let’s find ways to have our unbelieving friends sit down to a feast of the gospel rather than simply serving fast food.