Today's post will continue in 2 Corinthians chapter 5.
"For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive what is due him for the things done while in the body, whether good or bad.
Since, then we know what it is to fear the Lord, we try to persuade men. What we are is plain to God, and I hope it is also plain to your conscience. We are not trying to commend ourselves to you again, but are giving you an opportunity to take pride in us, so that you can answer those who take pride in what is seen rather than what is in the heart. If we are out of our mind, it is for the sake of God; if we are in our right mind, it is for you. For Christ's love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died. And He died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for Him who died for them and was raised again." 2 Corinthians 5:10-15
In the passage above there are two things that should compel us to evangelism: fear and love. Let's look at each.
1) Fear compels evangelism.
Paul says that we must all appear before the judgement seat of Christ. This should inspire fear in us. I used to think that Christians were spared from the judgment seat of Christ, but I was wrong. We will all stand before the Lord and have our deeds judged, whether good or bad. Only if you are a Christian can you withstand this judgement. But even as a Christian this strikes fear into me. I do not want to stand before God and have Him tell me all the bad I did or all the good I didn't do. I don't want Him to show me all the people I didn't share the Gospel with when I had a chance.
When I stand before God in judgment I want Him to say, "Well done good and faithful servant." I desperately want that, but it won't happen if I don't get off my butt and do something.
"Since, then we know what it is to fear the Lord, we try to persuade men." Because I know that all men are to be judged I want to persuade people to claim Jesus' righteousness as their own. I fear the judgment with the righteousness of Christ, I can't imagine the judgment for someone who has not accepted the mercy of God.
Fear of the Lord should compel evangelism; it should not paralyze it should motivate.
2) Christ's love compels evangelism.
"For Christ's love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died. And He died for all, that those who should live should no longer live for themselves but for Him who died for them and was raised again."
Christ died for me so I want to live for Him and not myself. If my neighbor died for me I would be so grateful. My neighbor would never mow his yard again or shovel his driveway. I would work for my neighbor because the love he showed me.
Christ died for me so I live for Him. And Christ died for everyone so I want to share the love of Christ with everyone. If I knew a way that everyone could get tickets to see the latest blockbuster movie I would tell a lot of people. A ticket to the latest blockbuster movie is nice, but the Good News that Jesus loves everyone is infinitely better. Jesus loves everyone and everyone needs to know that.
Don't covet the love of Christ. Share it. Don't be ungrateful for Christ's love, be inspired to action by it.
Fear of the Lord and Christ's love compel us to evangelize. I want you to know that there are many reasons to fear the Almighty God, so you should desire reconciliation with Him. I also want you to know that the Almighty God loves you. He doesn't just want to reconcile with you, He wants to love you like a son or daughter today.