Life Changing Advice | Luke 6:37-38

YouTube video sermon

Church invitations change lives!

Introduction

Show Video “Don’t Judge Invite”

Luke 6:37-38 ESV “Judge not, and you will not be judged; condemn not, and you will not be condemned; forgive, and you will be forgiven; (38) give, and it will be given to you. Good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap. For with the measure you use it will be measured back to you.”

Show Title Slide

  • This morning I have some LIFE CHANGING ADVICE for you.
    • Life changing advice, and I mean that! The thing is though, this advice that I am going to share with you, if you take it I guarantee it will be life changing… it just won’t be your life that it changes.
      • I mean, sure, if you take this advice you will personally see benefits in your life and you will see benefits in your spiritual walk, but this advice is life changing for those around you. It will change other peoples lives!
    • Now this advice is very simple: Don’t judge, forgive others, don’t condemn others, and give, give, give.
      • Let’s be real church, there are a million sermons on this verse and others like it, and quite frankly if you are looking for a fire message on what it looks like to not judge or condemn I encourage you to go watch the sermon Cake Ain’t Green Bro, it will work as a great precursor to this message.
        • But today I want to get specific… I want to hone in, I want to talk about something that each and everyone of us can do to change lives and change eternities if we would but apply this verse to one very simply, but neglected, activity… inviting people to church.
      • Yup, today we are going to talk about inviting people to church. What‽ What kind of message… yup, is it a self serving message for me to preach about inviting people to church? Sure, I want this church to grow…
        • But it’s also a Kingdom serving principle because I want the KINGDOM to grow.
          • Let me give you some facts… facts upon facts, alright… here is some facts…
          • THE VAST MAJORITY OF CHRISTIANS IN AMERICA WHERE SAVED IN ONE OF TWO PLACES.
            • At home, or at church.
            • These are the two biggest harvest fields in America for Christ.
          • Think about your own salvation, I would bet with statistical certainty that the majority of the people in this room were either saved at home because of parents who raised them to trust and believe in Jesus, or at a church or church organized event.
            • I know that’s true for some of y’all because y’all got saved here.
          • Now if most people get saved in the church or in the home then there are two really great ways to grow the kingdom:
            • Have babies and adopt orphans, and raise them to love, trust, fear, follow, and obey in Jesus…
              • That’s a great way to grow the kingdom, this is the be fruitful and multiply method!
            • And the other way is to get people to come to a church where they can hear the word of God preached and the gospel shared regularly.
              • 80% of first time church goers go to church because someone invited them. I am guessing that for most of you… you are here because someone invited you!
            • So yeah, we are going to talk about inviting people to church today, and I hope that it pumps us all up and changes some lives, amen‽

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Point One – Inviting people to church is a Judgment free activity

Luke 6:37 ESVa “Judge not, and you will not be judged; …I have done a lot of street evangelism, church. A LOT. I have street preached to thousands in front of concerts and major league sports games in Seattle.

  • I have given out 10’s of thousands of gospel tracts. I have told hundreds the gospel in 1 on 1 street preaching.
  • I have also helped others learn how to evangelize in a street setting, I will never forget the first time sister Pam preached the Gospel on the street… it was so awesome, she refused to let this poor guy go until he got saved! She was chasing down people who said no to me to give them another chance, it was awesome.
  • And with this experience I have talked to a lot of people about evangelism, weather it be handing out a gospel tract, a church invite, or straight up preaching the gospel to them and giving them an invitation to follow Christ… For all of these things I hear the same excuses for why people don’t do this…
    • What if offend someone?
    • What if they already go to church?
    • What if they hate church?
    • What if they ask questions I don’t know the answer to?
    • What if they get angry or violent?
    • What if they only want to argue?
  • Church all of these what if’s are actually judgment you are passing on strangers.
  • You see when Jesus said Judge not least ye be judged he was not saying it was outright wrong to judge… there are different types of judging… But what he is saying is do not judge someone unrighteous.
    • I mean Jesus tells us to judge! He says “Judge a tree by it’s fruit”… that’s righteous judgment… Unrighteous judgment is to look at someone and to judge them based on the way they look, the way they talk, the way they dress, the color of their skin, the number of piercings or tattoos they have, their age, their weight, their gender… none of that has to do with a person’s fruit! That is unrighteous judgment, and Jesus tells us very clearly we are not to judge in that way. Judge not least you be judged.
  • But all these “What if questions” are unrighteous questions…
    • And I am just talking about inviting people to church!!!! Ok, if there was a scale of which types of evangelism are most difficult, inviting people to church would be on the bottom of the list… it’s the easiest way to help someone know Christ… YET STILL I HEAR ALL OF THESE WHAT IF QUESTIONS! And all of them are unrighteous judgment.
  • What if I offend that person: You have just judged that person… you have judged by nothing other than appearance and your own prejudices that the person in front of you is not spiritually hungry, that they are not thirsty for Christ, that they are not worth your time to even find out if they might be offended. By not giving them an invite because you might offend them, you have passed judgement on them.
  • What if they already go to church: Really, what makes you say that? The way they dress, the way they act, their age, what would make you say that? You have passed judgment on them, the only way to know is to talk to them!
  • What if they hate church? I don’t know man, what if they are so desperate for fellowship and family that they will go to the first thing someone invites them to and if its not you it might be a Mormon…
  • What if they ask questions I don’t know the answer to? Why do you assume they will be defensive to the gospel? You have judged them.
  • What if they get angry or violent? Where did you get that idea from, maybe they are so hurt that they need healing and love!
  • What if they only want to argue? Why would you say this, the chance of them disagreeing with you is enough for you to not want them to come to Christ?

Look: There is one reason and one reason only NOT to invite someone to church, and that is because God tell’s you not to invite that person.

  • Here’s one “That person doesn’t look like the kind of person who would go to church”… that’s just straight up judgey!
    • And I know some of yall have done this because I HAVE DONE THIS!
      • God will be like: Invite that dude to church…
      • Ahhhhhh…. That dude? Yeaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhh…
    • Judge not least you be judged, what do you have to lose?

Point Two – Inviting is the enemy of Condemnation and the Ally of Forgiveness

Luke 6:37 ESVb “… condemn not, and you will not be condemned; forgive, and you will be forgiven;

  • Let me just be as clear as I possibly can: If God tells you or moves you to reach out to someone, be it praying for them, talking to them about Jesus, inviting them to church, or preach the gospel to them… if God puts that in your heart and you say “no” you have just condemned them to hell.
    • Like I don’t know any other way to say it, I don’t want to sound mean or fire and brimstone or whatever… but that’s just the truth.
    • If God says “See that person in a wheelchair over there, go ask them if you can pray for them”
      • If you say “no” for any reason, what you are saying is “God, whatever your plan is for them, I don’t want to be a part of it”
      • “God I am just not comfortable with that, I would rather them face hell fire then me face my discomfort”
        • Now I am not saying that person is going to hell, they might be an on fire believer, but you don’t know until you walk over there and do what God told you to do.
          • And claiming ignorance doesn’t help your cause… “well I didn’t know”… “what do you mean you didn’t know? God told you! He knows, don’t you trust Him? Or do you just not care.”

1 John 3:20 ESV for whenever our heart condemns us, God is greater than our heart, and he knows everything.

  • Y’all this is a practical sermon, but… whoa, it’s getting real.
  • When I was in Seattle one day God moved on me to talk to a man sitting on a park fountain. He had his head down like he was listening to music… young guy, clean cut, nice clothes… (You see what I did, I just judged him, why does it matter his age or appearance… but I thought about it for sure)… God told me to go talk to him and so I was like “alright Lord”
  • I went over to this guy and said “Do you believe in heaven and hell” he looked up at me, now that I could see his face I could see that it was red, and wet from many many tears…
    • I was taken aback, I said “Man I am just out here trying to help as many people get to heaven as possible, do you know Jesus?”
    • His eyes had grown huge in wonder, but still with tears… like big sad puppy dog eyes… he took a breath and said “Are you an angel… you must be an angel”
    • I said “No I am just me”
    • He said “You must be, you must be an angel! I was just crying out to God ‘God if you are real, if you care, send me an angel to speak to me… and here you are”.
    • I sat and talked and prayed and cried with him for about 15 minutes, and he went on his way in a completely different place then when I meet him.
      • I have no idea what would have happened if I told God no in that situation… I don’t want to know.
    • The man said “God send me an angel!” and God sent me…
      • Catch this church… the man wasn’t wrong when he said I must be an angel.
      • The word angel simply means messenger, it doesn’t always mean a spiritual being… it doesn’t always mean cherubim or seraphim, sometimes it means a person who delivers a message from God… and that’s exactly what I was in that moment.
    • Y’all can be God’s angles, you can be His messengers, if you would let Him send you.
  • And look we are talking about church invites today. Just inviting someone to church can be a message from God. It can lead to forgiveness.
    • Church invites are a friend to forgiveness.
      • Something as simple as inviting someone to church can lead to that person being forgiven by Christ… IT CAN CHANGE THEIR LIVES!
      • CHURCH INVITES ARE LIFE CHANGING.
    • The first year of the church we did a lot of inviting and evangelizing… we had two full time missionaries with us from Singapore, Reen and Rachel (Who y’all will meet at our five year anniversary in January).
    • One day in early Spring, probably one 3 or 4 months into the church plant, Reen and Rachel were out at Kirkwood inviting people to church and talking to them about Jesus.
      • When this young, skinny, funny looking kid in a Dolphin’s jersey walked by them. It was Trent.
      • They invited him to church! And if y’all know Trent, Trent can’t say no to a girl! So he came to church that Sunday.
        • And that Sunday God lead me to preach the Gospel, the whole message was the gospel… and Trent, on the very first day he had ever attended a church got saved.
        • In our living room with a whole of like 8 people, including Amanda, and I, Trent responded and said “Yes I want to follow Christ”.
        • That Sunday just happened to be our very first baptism Sunday and on the very same day Trent got saved he got baptized. Praise God.
      • We bank at Wells Fargo, and I invited every single person in that bank multiple times to church… I didn’t preach to them, I didn’t argue theology, I just gave them a card and a friendly invite… so did Amanda when she would go. Every single person in that bank said they would come visit the church… but none of them ever did… except for one.
      • Lupita was a woman of her word, she said she would visit the church and she did.
      • One day shortly there after I gave a gospel invitation at the end of service in the school room… and Lupita couldn’t keep her hand down! I remember exactly where you were sitting.
        • Church invites change lives! Now I am wondering how long it’s going to be before Lupita is a pastor because this lady LOVES the Lord!
      • Amanda once got a massage from a half-Pilipino lady who she didn’t know at all, but she needed a massage. At the end of the massage she invited her to church.
      • A little while latter Shana needed a massage, same story, gave this lady an invite.
      • Now what Amanda and Shana did not know was that this ladies heart was CRYING out for fellowship. Her name is Wendy Duchesneau, and her family is now my family, her sons are my son’s brothers, they are closer to us than many blood relatives.
        • CHURCH INVITES CHANGE LIVES.
      • Now at this point in the message you might be thinking “Hey, church is for the saints, we should not be inviting non-believers to church, we should be getting people saved before they come to church… The bible makes it very clear that church is not supposed to be an evangelism tool”
        • I have heard this argument a lot, especially from street preachers, I used to believe it… but it just doesn’t hold Biblical water.
        • The book of 1 Corinthians makes it VERY clear that not only do unbelievers come to church, but that we should run church in a way that leads people to Christ.
          • There is no other way to read 1 Corinthians 14 without horribly twisting scripture. Particularly verses 23-25 where Paul talks about leading unbelievers to Christ in Church.
        • But please don’t let me discourage you from preaching the Gospel! Not at all, if you want to go and preach the gospel on the street please do! Let me help! I want to come with you! It’s wonderful!
        • But not everyone is comfortable with that, so we can at least start with inviting people to church Amen‽
      • You guy’s know the late great Billy Graham right? One of the worlds most powerful evangilists, he is credited with… get this… Billy Graham is credited with leading 3.2 MILLION people to Jesus.
        • But you know who lead Billy Graham to Jesus? I mean someone had to lead Him to Jesus right?
          • Well, turns out it was another mega evangelist who had lead thousands to Christ before Graham…
          • But not everyone is a mega evangelist… here is the kicker, it was the kid who had a locker next to Billy Grahams locker at highschool who invited Graham to the crusade where Graham got saved.
            • His name was Grady, all he did was invite Billy Graham to this crusade in Highschool, Billy said yes and was saved that night.
            • Grady didn’t preach the gospel to Graham, he didn’t lead him through a prayer… but it was because Grady invited Graham to a revival that Graham got saved and became the man we knew him to be!
          • Church Invites Change Lives! And in Grady’s case, his invite lead to 3.2 million lives being changed.

Point Three – Inviting is an easy way to Give!

Luke 6:38 ESV give, and it will be given to you. Good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap. For with the measure you use it will be measured back to you.”

  • Inviting someone to church is an easy way to give! It’s so easy, and it doesn’t cost you anything!
    • Do you believe that healing happens here?
      • That forgiveness happens here?
      • That joy is found here?
      • That love is spread here?
      • That family is made here?
      • That miracles happen here?
    • THEN WHY WOULD YOU NOT INVITE PEOPLE.
      • By inviting people to church you are saying that you want them to experience that healing, forgiveness, healing, joy, love, family and miracles. There is plenty to go around y’all.
    • You don’t have to give someone a million dollars to change their lives, sometimes a church invite is all they need.
    • You don’t have to buy someone a new car like Oprah does for here guests for someone to find joy.
      • Have you ever seen that? I posted it on Facebook… she gave everyone a car in her audience “You get a car, you get a car, you get a car, everybody gets a car!” She said it was the most joyful thing she has ever experienced! I can honestly say I have experienced way more joy in church then those people getting cars…
      • You can be the giver of that kind of joy simply by inviting people to church.
        • You get joy, and you get joy, and you get joy, and everybody get’s joy!
        • You get healing, and you get love, and you get forgiveness, everybody can come to Christ amen!
      • Look, we are already invested in this church y’all. We invest time and money here because we believe in what God is doing here… why would we not want to share that with others?
        • It doesn’t cost the church anything to fill up all our seats. It doesn’t cost the church anything to pray for more and more people, to worship alongside more people, to lead more people in this very room to Jesus!
          • God has already built the framework for people to be blessed here, now we just need to bring people here.
        • Inviting people to church is an easy way to give.
          • And the more people being blessed here the more you are going to be blessed here, pressed down and overflowing! Amen!
        • Final example let me show you how real and practical this is… if you want to help a homeless person, truly help them, let me show you how.
          • First, feed them, take care of there physical need, then invite them to church.
          • That church invite can literally turn their life around.
            • Why?
          • Let’s go full social gospel, you never want to go full social gospel, but lets do it just for this example… take all the spiritual stuff out of church for a second… but leave the people and the fellowship and the family here…
            • Maybe you don’t have a spare bedroom to house a homeless guy in, maybe you don’t have enough money to help them, maybe you don’t have what they need…
              • But maybe someone else in the church does.
              • Maybe this homeless person comes to church, sure they need a ride every Sunday, but they come, and they become a part of this family.
            • Guess what, there are people here who can help them find a job, there are people here who can help them find a place to live, there are people here who can help them get recovery from addictions, there are people here who can help fill their needs.
              • Maybe not one of us has the power to change a homeless persons life, but we as a church have more than enough power to do that. And all it takes is an invite.
            • And the best part is is that we are NOT a social gospel church, we are a FULL GOSPEL CHURCH! We believe in ALL of it, not just the social stuff, so while they will get all of their physical needs meet they will also get all of their Spiritual needs meet! And they just might find a home in heaven while looking for a home here! HALLELUJAH!
          • Inviting someone to church is an easy way to give people the things of the Lord because the church is a place where the things of the Lord are freely given! Amen‽

Conclusion

Hand Out five truelife.org cards each.

Matthew 28:18-20 ESV And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. (19) 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, (20) teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”

  • Today I am inviting you into taking a very small step into fulfilling the great commission Christ gave. To make disciples.
    • I am not asking anyone to street preach, I am not even asking that you share your testimony or the gospel to strangers, though that will likely happen as you begin to invite people to church, what I am asking is that you simply hand out these five cards this week.
  • I truly believe in the power of the church invite, so we have partnered with TrueLife.org to work on an outreach program that invites people from all walks of life to church!
    • On the back is a website, truelife.org. It is an awesome, God fearing, Bible believing site full of answers to life’s hardest questions.
      • Afraid that people will ask you something you don’t know, that excuses doesn’t work anymore because you can just send them to this website.
      • Oh, and the website has trained pastors waiting to answer live questions for people who go there!
    • This card can change lives, I am sure of it, the question is… are we willing to give them out.
    • How many of y’all think you can do that, show of hands if you think you can give these five cards away.

Introduction Video

  • How many of y’all think you can give these five cards away this week… how many of y’all can do that, show of hands if you think you can give these five cards away.
    • Praise God, now I am going to hold you accountable, not to embarrass anyone, but because I so passionately believe that God want’s to use these cards to help change lives.

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