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Evangelism & Discipleship
Evangelism should be one of the highest priorities of the church.  Why?
Ministry Coordinator Contact:
Fredd Mapp - 

Because Christ commanded it. 
We typically refer to the Great Commission of Matthew 28:18-20 as our evangelistic and disciples-making command. But there are many other places in the New Testament where the priority of evangelism is clearly evident. Christ commanded it. We must do it.
We must go and make Disciples.
All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.  Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy ‘Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.  And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age. (Matt. 28-20)
Because Christ is the only way of salvation. 
There is no way around it. Salvation is exclusive. There is only one way. Jesus could not have made it clearer in John 14:6: “Jesus told him, ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.’” Jesus had an urgent message. He had an exclusive message. We must be conveyors of that narrowly-defined hope.
Because Christ died for the world. 
There is a reason John 3:16 is the most familiar and most quoted verse in the history of humanity. Jesus died for the world. He is the only way, but He has provided a way for everyone. That is a message that is urgent and worth telling. It’s the greatest message ever.
We must not overlook that discipleship is everyone’s job.
The members of the early church took their responsibility to make disciples very seriously. To them, the church wasn’t a corporation run by a CEO. Rather, they compared the church to a body that functions properly only when every member is doing its part.
Paul explained the function of the church in Ephesians 4:11–16:
He gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ ... we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ, from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with defined purpose.

Elder - Ron Taylor - rtaylor@southlakechurchofchrist.com
Deacon - Fred Mapp - fmapp@southlakechurchofchrist.com

  • In order for us to be forgiven of our sins, and therefore receive eternal life, we must accept salvation according to the plan which Christ has made possible.  There are five steps which we must take to enter into the saved relationship with Christ.


    First, we must hear the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  The Bible teaches that "faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God" (Romans 10:17).  One is not a Christian because his parents are.  Just as sin is not inherited, neither is faith (Ezekiel 18:20).  Each person must believe in Jesus Christ for himself.  Christianity is a religion of teaching (Matthew 28:19,20.  Unless one has heard the Gospel and learned that Jesus Christ died for our sins, was buried, and arose from the dead, he cannot be saved (1 Corinthians 15:1-4).  The apostle Paul wrote: "How shall they call Him in whom they have not believed?  And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard?  And how shall they hear without a preacher" (Romans 10:14)?  One must first hear and understand the Gospel before he can believe it.

    Second, one must believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the living God (Matthew 16:16).  Jesus said: "I said therefore unto you, that ye shall die in your sins: for if ye believe not that I am he, ye shall die in your sins" (John 8:24).  The jailor at Philippi asked Paul and Silas, "Sirs, what must I do to be saved?  And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house." (Acts 16:30,31).  Jesus also said: "He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned" (Mark 16:16).  One comes to believe in Jesus Christ when he hears the Word of God (Romans 10:17).  This is the reason it is so important that the Gospel be preached to the whole world (Mark 16:15).

    Third, one must repent of his sins in order to be saved (Acts 17:30,31).  Jesus commanded that "repentance and remission of sins should be preached in His name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem" (Luke 24:47).  Repentance is a result of being sorry for one's sins (2 Corinthians 7:10).  When the Jews on Pentecost Day learned from Peter that they had crucified the Son of God, they "were pricked in their heart" (Acts 2:37).  They wanted to be forgiven of their sins, so they asked, "What shall we do?"  They were told to "Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost" (Acts 2:37,38).  When one repents, he turns away from his sin (1 Thessalonians 1:9).  He shows he has repented by doing good works (Matthew 3:8).

    Fourth, one must confess that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the living God (Matthew 16:16).  This great truth is the very foundation upon which the church of Christ is built (Matthew 16:18Acts 4:11,121 Corinthians 3:11).  Jesus said that we must be willing to confess Him before men if we want Him to confess us before the Father (Matthew 10:32,33).  The apostle Paul wrote: "But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach; 9. That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. 10. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation." (Romans 10:8-10).  When Philip preached Jesus to the Ethiopian eunuch, the eunuch responded, "See, here is water; what doth hinder me to be baptized?"  Philip told him he could be baptized if he believed.  The eunuch then confessed, "I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God" (Acts 8:35-38).  We must make this important, yet simple confession also in order to be saved.

    Fifth, one must be baptized in order to be saved.  Jesus said: "He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved;" (Mark 16:16).  Please note that baptism follows belief.  One who does not believe that Gospel cannot be truly baptized.  Therefore, babies cannot be baptized for they are too young to (1) have sin, (2) hear the Gospel, (3) repent of sins, and (4) confess that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.  Baptism also follows repentance.  On Pentecost Day, Peter told those who asked what to do to be saved to "Repent, and let every one of you be baptized..." (Acts 2:38).  One cannot be truly baptized who has not truly repented.

    Baptism is a burial in water (Romans 6:3,4Colossians 2:12).  Therefore, sprinkling or pouring are not proper baptism.  Baptism is in order to be saved (Mark 16:161 Peter 3:21).  One is not savedbefore he is baptized!  Baptism is "for the remission (forgiveness) of sins" (Acts 2:38).  Just as Jesus shed His blood for the remission of sins (Matthew 26:28), so we are baptized in order to receive the remission of sins.  In baptism, the sinner's sins are washed away by the blood of Jesus (Acts 22:16Revelation 1:5).


    What does one have to do in order to be forgiven of his sins?

    He must:

    1. Hear the Gospel of Christ

    2. Believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God

    3. Repent of all his past sins

    4. Confess that Christ is God's Son

    5. Be Baptized for the remission of sins

    When he does this, he is added by the Lord to His church (Acts 2:41,47).  He is born again (John 3:3-52 Corinthians 5:17).  He is in Christ where all spiritual blessings are to be found (Ephesians 1:3Galatians 3:26,27).  In short, he is a Christian (Acts 11:2626:281 Peter 4:16).

    Are you saved from your sins?  Have taken these simple steps to salvation?  If not, why not do so today?

The phrase “fishers of men” was spoken by Jesus when He was calling two of His disciples, Simon Peter and Andrew, to follow Him. “As Jesus walked beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and his brother Andrew casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen. ‘Come, follow me,’ Jesus said, ‘and I will make you fishers of men.’ At once they left their nets and followed him” (Mark 1:16–18; see also Matthew 4:19).

The idea behind fishing is to know the fish you are looking for and attract it so you can make the catch. To catch a fish we must know what equipment to use, the habitat and depth of the water we are fishing in, as well as the kind of bait the fish will go after. After we understand everything we need for real fishing, then how do we relate that to being fishers of men?

God asks us to make disciples of all nations (Matthew 28:18–20). Just as we need equipment to be fishermen, we need equipment to be fishers of men. Putting on the armor of God is one way to be ready at all times with everything we need (Ephesians 6:10–18). Especially important are the shield of faith with which we ward off the opposition from demonic forces who don’t want to see men saved by the gospel of Christ (v. 16) and the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God (v. 17). Without these two pieces of spiritual equipment, we will find fishing for men’s souls impossible.

Not only must we have the armor of God as our equipment, but we must also know the fish we are trying to attract. Knowing the lost condition of the people around us will help us to understand that, no matter how good we are at fishing, we will never “catch” the fish on our own. No reasoned argument will convert the soul of a darkened mind, because “the god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God” (2 Corinthians 4:4). But God can and frequently does penetrate the darkness with the glorious gospel, and He uses us to do it. He knows which “fish” are His; therefore, we are to seek His wisdom and His guidance on all our fishing expeditions. Prayer is essential.

Lastly we must offer the only effective bait—the gospel of Jesus Christ. To those who are perishing, the message of the cross is foolishness, but to us, it is the power of God (1 Corinthians 1:18). The gospel message has the power to change lives, shine light into darkness, and deliver evil men from hell. There is power in no other message and no other “bait” can catch the fish of God. “I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile” (Romans 1:16). This was Jesus’ message to Peter and Andrew—follow Me, learn of Me, know and understand My mission and My message. Only then will you be able to be fishers of men.