Protest Sin or Preach the Gospel
I’ve noticed a trend lately that has caused me to ask the question. Are we as believers in Jesus Christ called to protest sin or are we called to preach the gospel? Sin has existed in the world among men since our father Adam sinned against God our creator by taking and eating from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. The world that we live in is a dark and wicked place, but there is good in the world. Much of the beauty that God created still exists today. I have noticed a trend among some of my brethren, especially on facebook that has left me wondering, and asking questions, seeking answers from God in His word.
In October of last year my heart was pricked by God over the plight of the unborn. This caused me to do some research and in doing so I found out how far reaching this atrocity is. I also discovered the root cause of abortion in America which is sexual immorality. You can read about this in the blog I wrote called: “Sexual Immorality Kills”. This led me and some of my evangelism partners and our wives to begin going to abortion mills and plead for lives with the word of God and gospel of Jesus Christ.
As I previously stated I have noticed a trend lately among people that I consider to be brothers and sisters in Christ, which leaves me concerned. What really concerns me is that this has seemed to spread, and is being done among those who are considered to be leaders, at least they are in the street evangelism community around the country. I know that bringing this up is not going to win me any popularity contests, but I do think it should be said nonetheless.
The trend that I have noticed is this; protesting sin. What do I mean by that? Pictures of upside down flags, speaking evil against the country we live in and its leaders. Speaking evil against different groups of sinners, homosexuals are a prime example; posting their own articles for the purpose of degrading and defaming them and not realizing that you glorify them in the process. The apostle Paul said; “you, therefore, who teach another, do you not teach yourself? You who preach that one shall not steal, do you steal? You who say that one should not commit adultery, do you commit adultery? You who abhor idols, do you rob temples? You who boast in the Law, through your breaking the Law, do you dishonor God? For "the name of God is blasphemed among the Gentiles because of you," just as it is written.” ~(Romans 2:21-24)
It is so easy to speak against something or someone that you do not like or even hate; that is human nature and it is a sinful nature at that; it is not like God. “For one will hardly die for a righteous man; though perhaps for the good man someone would dare even to die. But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” ~(Romans 5:7-8) Let me tell you a little secret, the people of this world are not our enemies, they may even consider themselves to be our enemies and act like it, but they are not our enemies, they are our neighbors. They may very well be enemies of God, but they are not our enemies. “God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them; “and He made from one man every nation of mankind to live on all the face of the earth, having determined their appointed times and the boundaries of their habitation, that they would seek God, if perhaps they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us; for in Him we live and move and exist, as even some of your own poets have said, 'For we also are His children. '” ~(Genesis 1:27, Acts 17:26-28) The people of this world are not our enemies, they are our neighbors; let me tell you who is our enemy, that liar Satan and our sin.
Allow me to paint for you a picture of two men:
One man, let’s call him Bob owns a strip club. He makes money by abusing women and exploiting them, by promoting drunkenness, and is a swindler because he is also a loan shark to the poor. Bob is a professed atheist and hates the name of Jesus and by the way, Bob is in his tenth homosexual relationship.
The other man, let’s call him Jim, has had the same wife for 20 years; he reads his bible and spends time in prayer to the Lord daily. He is on the Elder board at his church, and teaches Sunday school. Bob gives money to the poor, and is part of a local evangelism group who goes out into the community to share the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ that he adores.
What is the difference between these two men? One man you would call wicked and one man you would call righteous. Let me ask you this, why would you call one man wicked and the other righteous, is it because of the things they do? I beg to differ, and scripture does as well! Before I tell you what makes one man wicked and the other man righteous, allow me to tell you how they are the same. They are both sinners! “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” ~(Romans 3:23), and if that is not enough to convince you read (Romans 3:10-18). Now that word sinner is so loosely used, it has in some ways lost its connotation, so to clarify, not only are they both sinners, both are totally depraved and worthy of all condemnation. The fact that Jim is not a strip club owner like Bob is only by the grace of God. You see us Christians like the Jew that Paul was speaking of in Romans 2:21-24 (previously quoted), we look at the law of God and from our carnate sinful minds, even though outwardly we say something else, inwardly we judge the people around us in comparison to the law, and if someone else’s lawlessness exceeds our own, we declare them wicked. But when we do that, we miss the entire point of the law, the law was not given among men for men to declare one man more sinful than another, the law was given to bring the knowledge that we are sinners, guilty before God(see Romans 3:19-20). Now that I’ve told you how these two men are alike, let me tell you how they are different. They are different because Jim has faith in Jesus Christ and Bob does not. Jim is not righteous because of the things he does or does not do; he is righteous because God has declared him righteous through faith in Jesus Christ.
Not too long ago, I think it was this past summer, a big stir occurred because the owner of Chic-fil-A made a statement standing up for marriage and against what is impossible, homosexual marriage. There was one particular day which was organized through social media, to support Chic-fil-A. This was to be done by everyone who was in support of S. Truett Cathy and his statement, by going to Chic-fil-A on that day and eating. The Lord has granted me an evangelism mind set, so I saw this as an opportunity to preach the gospel. One of the problems I find in preaching the gospel in Tyler, TX is that people never seem to gather together outdoors, they are either in a car or in a building. But I knew that there would be long lines and many people at the Chic-fil-A on Broadway in Tyler, so I thought there would be many outside, and that held true. I also knew because of the knowledge scripture gives me of human nature, that the driving force for this thing was self-righteousness. So from the sidewalk outside the Chic-fil-A, I did not preach against, or on homosexuality. I preached the law of God to bring the knowledge of sin, I preached the gospel of Jesus Christ, I preached salvation from the wrath of God through faith in Christ alone, and I preached repentance towards God. And I have to tell you, my thoughts on this matter proved true when I endured the worst heckling I have yet endured since becoming an open-air preacher, and it was by a woman who professed to be a Christian.
So this causes me to ask myself the question; am I going to the abortion mill to protest sin or preach the gospel? We will tell people that we are not here as protestors, we are here to share with you the gospel of Jesus Christ, but is that true, is that why we are there? I recently posed a question on facebook in a particular way, to elicit a response from like minded brethren, I wanted to hear from brothers and sister who like me, are reformed in their theology and also go to abortion mills. I have to tell you that all of the responses I got were encouraging, to my delight, and to the glory of God, all the answers I got were exactly the same thing that the word of God has shown me, and what I myself had been thinking.
I hate abortion; it is murder, abortion is the taking of another human life by malice of forethought. Jesus said; “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another.” I and the apostle Paul call this “the law of Christ”, “even as I have loved you, that you also love one another.” So out of love for my neighbor I go to the abortion mill. So the question I asked myself, do I go to the abortion mill in protest of sin? The answer is, yes I do! But, I trust in the word of God. I know that there is nothing I can do stop the murder of a child in the womb, nothing! The laws of the country support the murder of a child in the womb. Does going out to an abortion mill protesting sin with signs and upside down flags stop abortion. No they do not; in fact I fear that it leads some to blaspheme God all the more. Now when I say signs, I do not mean that all signs are bad, some can actually be helpful but they are limited. One sign used in abortion mill outreach that is helpful is the “BABIES ARE MURDERED HERE” sign, created by babiesaremurderedhere.com. The reason this sign is helpful is because it declares the truth, which is that at this location, on this particular day and time, babies are being murdered. Things that are not helpful are things with the strict purpose of protesting sin and defaming. Signs that say, “Planned Parenthood is owned by Satan”, Upside Down Flags, “Obama Loves to Murder children”; these types of things are in themselves an offense, and do not lead to repentance.
Only the word of God and gospel of Jesus Christ by the Spirit if God can change a heart, the only thing that we have to change a heart and mind from sin to righteousness is the preaching of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. “For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, " But the righteous man shall live by faith."” ~(Romans 1:16-18) “For Moses writes that the man who practices the righteousness which is based on law shall live by that righteousness. But the righteousness based on faith speaks as follows:" DO not say in your heart, ' Who will ascend into heaven? '(that is, to bring Christ down), or ' Who will descend into the abyss? '(that is, to bring Christ up from the dead)." But what does it say? "The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart"—that is, the word of faith which we are preaching, that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation. For the Scripture says, "Whoever believes in Him will not be disappointed. For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, abounding in riches for all who call on Him; for " Whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved. "How then will they call on Him in whom they have not believed? How will they believe in Him whom they have not heard? And how will they hear without a preacher? How will they preach unless they are sent? Just as it is written, "How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news of good things!" However, they did not all heed the good news; for Isaiah says, "Lord, who has believed our report?" So faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ. ~(Romans 10:5-17)
So brothers and sisters, may I encourage you to stop protesting sin and preach the gospel of Jesus Christ alone; it is the gospel alone that brings life, protesting sins does not, protesting sin brings death; to talk about how wicked some group is like homosexuals or the country may make you feel better about yourself, but has never converted a single person; only the gospel has the power to do that. As the apostle Paul said, “For I determined to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ, and Him crucified.” ~(1 Corinthians 2:2)
Mike Peek a slave of Jesus Christ