The damage fear has done to evangelism
Beloved, it is very clear, even to a blind man, that the pulse of far-reaching evangelism has dwindled. When it would have been expected that revival would blossom, particularly in this part of the world, the reverse is what we are witnessing. This is as a result of many factors, of which fear has been identified as one. Fear of molestation, persecution and character assassination has actually distorted the progress of evangelism in our country. Only a few churches have taken the bull by the horn and are doing what our Lord commissioned us to do.
Although this is a time of fear, when everything seems to be going negatively, when the big and strong are trying to exert their influences upon others, when those with political and financial muscles are brandishing their might, so that they will be feared, but we, the genuine Christians, must not follow the negative trend of the multitude to destroy our souls.
Many Christians have abandoned evangelism because of fear of their bosses, neighbours, friends and colleagues. The tempo of revival evangelism has taken a nosedive, because lots of Christians have felt intimidated and are thus no longer keen on pursuing their divine commission. Though Christians’ lives are more threatened now than at any other time, the fear of God must still dominate that of man.
Luke 12:5 says, “But I will forewarn you whom ye shall fear: Fear Him, Who after he hath killed hath power to cast into hell; yea, I say unto you, Fear Him.”
In the above passage, Jesus was speaking to His disciples and those that claimed to be children of Abraham and practising righteousness, not to let the fear of man make them act hypocritically, or conceal anything, which He had commissioned them to do. He warned them of the dangers hanging over their heads, if they would derail from obeying God’s commandment because of fear of man.
In the present time, many Churches that have given up on evangelism are joining hands with haters of Christianity to oppose the ones that have taken up the challenge of evangelism and causing revival all over the world. Some have gone as far as forcing those wearing the apron, which is the instrument of their publicity, to remove it. On many occasions, born again Christians’ megaphones were snatched and confiscated or destroyed. The irony is that the people committing this crime are mostly of same faith and are influenced by their overseers and captains of ministries.
Ecc. 12:13-14 says, “Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man. 14 For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil.”
Beloved, a man has but one life to lose, and one soul to save; and it is madness to sacrifice the salvation of the soul to the preservation of the life. Denial of Christ through fear of man has always been a very common form of hypocrisy. However, the consequence of fearing man ends in this physical world, as it has no effect on the soul. Therefore, the fear of God, as having power to cast into hell, is to be pressed even on every true believer.
Jesus has foretold us that the preaching of the gospel will indeed stir up many enemies against us, who will malign and oppose us, but He counseled us not to fear those, who can only kill the body, rather we should fear Him, Who, if we fail in our duty, can cast both body and soul into hell.
Beloved, the persons for whom this duty of fear is recommended and bound upon are the real Christians. We not only may, but also ought to fear Him, not only for His greatness and goodness, but also upon the account of His punitive justice, as being able to cast both soul and body into hell. Such fear is not only lawful, but is also laudable, commendable and commanded and by it, we shall revive the fire of evangelism again.