Jesus taught a parable about the seed and the sower. He talks about those who hear the Word but are like seed that fall by the wayside. He says they hear the Word, “Then the devil comes and takes away the word from their heart, so that they will not believe and be saved” (Luke 8:12, NASB).
So you see, the devil goes to church. He goes more often than many people do. He believes in the power of the Word more than some people do. His fear is that if unbelievers believe the Word, they will become saved. He does not want that to happen. He uses any means available to “steal” the Word so it won’t take root in the unbeliever’s heart.
So let’s talk about the invitation to salvation that is extended during our public worship gatherings. This appeal must be front and center. Everything we do throughout the service should be leading up to the opportunity for the lost to accept Christ as their Savior. With regard to the two paragraphs above, it should be clear that much spiritual tension exists during the invitation to salvation. The devil opposes any occasion for unbelievers to believe the gospel and be saved.
The enemy will exploit anything he can to undermine the invitation to salvation. We must deny him every opportunity to do so that we can. We can sing and get as happy as we want to as the choir or praise team leads us into a time of singing and praising God. But we must demand order during the ministry of the Word. Babies and little children should not be running around in the sanctuary at this time. No distractions should be allowed. Remember, faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God.
Every church member can be a part of his or her church’s invitation to salvation. The devil has a mission. It is diametrically opposed to the mission of the church. We need to pray against the works of the enemy. What a difference it would make if every church member undergirded the worship gathering with prayer for the salvation of the lost before leaving home to come to church. We can also be quietly prayerful for the lost during the time the preacher makes the appeal for unbelievers to accept Christ.
We may not see the devil at work during the ministry of the Word. But based on Jesus’ parable, we know he is. Church members should do all they can to help unbelievers say yes to Jesus.
Copyright © 2017 by Frank King. All rights reserved.