The Simple, Yet Powerful Act of Inviting Someone to Church

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In his book, The Unchurched Next Door, Thom Rainer and a team of researchers interviewed hundreds of individuals who do not attend church in hopes of learning something about how Christians can more effectively reach out to them with the good news of Jesus Christ.  After sorting through all the information from the interviews, they discovered ten characteristics that were true of the majority of these unchurched people.  Some of them are quite surprising.

  1. Most of the unchurched prefer to attend church on Sunday morning if they attend.
  2. Females are likely to be either the most antagonistic or the most receptive to the gospel.
  3. Most of the unchurched feel guilty about not attending church.
  4. 82 percent of the unchurched are at least “somewhat likely” to attend church if they are invited.
  5. Very few of the unchurched have had someone share with them how to become a Christian.  And Christians have not been particularly influential in their lives.
  6. Most of the unchurched have a positive view about pastors, ministers, and the church.
  7. Some types of “cold calls” [i.e., showing up on someone’s doorstep unannounced] are effective; many are not.
  8. The unchurched would like to develop a real and sincere relationship with a Christian.
  9. The attitudes of the unchurched are not correlated to where they live, their ethnic or racial background, or their gender.
  10. Many of the unchurched are far more concerned about the spiritual well-being of their children than of themselves.

All of these facts about our non-church-attending neighbors are interesting, but I want especially to draw our attention to #4.  82 percent of the unchurched are at least “somewhat likely” to attend church if they are invited.  This ought to give us great confidence!  Don’t be afraid to invite your neighbors, coworkers, or children’s friends to church;  chances are they’re part of the 82% that are likely to come if they are asked!  Why not invite someone to next week’s service?

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The Need for a Great Commission Resurgence

On June 15, the messengers at the annual meeting of the Southern Baptist Convention, meeting in Orlando, FL, voted to affirm recommendations calling for a Great Commission Resurgence in our convention.  The purpose of this was to call Southern Baptists to recommit themselves to making disciples of all nations, including the communities in which they live.

The need for this is staggering.  Of the almost 7 billion people in the world, the most generous estimate is that only around 1 billion are Christians.  This means that over 6 billion people are lost and on the road to eternal punishment in hell.  Of these 6 billion who are lost, over 3.5 billion have never heard the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  In the words of the committee who brought the recommendations to the convention, “There is no way that Southern Baptists can make real progress toward reaching these unreached people groups unless we experience a genuine Great Commission Resurgence.  We must see a tidal wave of evangelistic and missionary passion, or the numbers of unreached people groups will only grow, and lostness will spread.”

A recommitment to the Great Commission must start in our hearts and then in our church. On page two of this month’s newsletter, you will see a couple of ways our church is trying to do just that.

Blessings in Christ,

Pastor Grant (Matthew 28:18-20)