You MUST give an invitation?

Discussion in 'Missions / Witnessing / eVangelism' started by Salty, Nov 8, 2014.

  1. Salty

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    Found this quote on FB
    "If you close out a Church service without a clear explanation of God's simple plan of salvation. Then you need to recheck your salvation and get born again.". - the ghost preacher-


    Open for discussion
     
  2. RLBosley

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    So this guy is saying that if you're a pastor and you don't give an altar call you aren't saved? Am I understanding that right?

    That's just stupid.
     
  3. Revmitchell

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    It is an intentionally exaggerated statement made in order to emphasize the perceived need to make sure there is always an invitation.
     
  4. RLBosley

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    I hope it's exaggerated, though I'm sure there are some who believe it is true.

    It's still absurd though. An invitation is not a necessity.
     
  5. Revmitchell

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    The thinking is that there could be someone there who needs to hear the gospel and be given an opportunity to receive it who might not ever get that chance again.
     
  6. RLBosley

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    I get that.

    But to say that it must be done after every single service is extreme. Especially when you insinuate, even hyperbolically, that those who don't do so are not saved either.

    Also, why wait until the end of service to explain the gospel? Shouldn't that have been made plain in the preaching itself? Of course you can't always give a complete explanation of the gospel in every single message, but I hope you get my point.
     
  7. Jerome

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    From Lectures to My Students, C. H. Spurgeon:

    "Do not close a single sermon without addressing the ungodly, but at the same time set yourself seasons for a determined and continuous assault upon them, and proceed with all your soul to the conflict. On such occasions aim distinctly at immediate conversions; labor to remove prejudices, to resolve doubts, to conquer objections, and to drive the sinner out of his hiding-places at once. Summon the church-members to special prayer, beseech them to speak personally both with the concerned and the unconcerned, and be yourself doubly upon the watch to address individuals. We have found that our February meetings at the Tabernacle have yielded remarkable results: the whole month being dedicated to special effort."

    "Mean conversions, expect them, and prepare for them. Resolve that your hearers shall either yield to your Lord or be without excuse, and that this shall be the immediate result of the sermon now in hand. Do not let the Christians around you wonder when souls are saved, but urge them to believe in the undiminished power of the glad tidings, and teach them to marvel if no saving result follows the delivery of the testimony of Jesus."
     
  8. Revmitchell

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    The invitation is about giving someone the opportunity to give their life to the Lord. It is about making an appeal to do the thing most needed in this world. You are right the gospel should have been made already otherwise the invitation is a moot point.
     
  9. RLBosley

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    But is even that kind of an invitation really a necessity? After EVERY service? I have my doubts.

    Regardless, the OP said that each service needs to end with "a clear explanation of God's simple plan of salvation." Sounds like this guy thinks that the entire gospel should be explained at the end of every service. Maybe he didn't explain himself well or I'm being to literal with his words.

    Also I could be reading into the quote what I think of when someone says "invitation" - the altar call that was so prevalent in my old churches. Come down front, recite a prayer and we popishly will declare you saved.
     
  10. Revmitchell

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    Probably an over simplification but yes that is what they are talking about.
     
  11. RLBosley

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    If so then that should never be done, IMO. I have no problem with "addressing the ungodly" as the Spurgeon quote said and urging them to trust Christ, but the altar call is an altogether different animal.
     
  12. Salty

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    I think the author of the quote is forgetting one very important point.

    The church members should be giving the plan of salvation to their friends.

    Somehow, we have been taught (either outright or insinuated) that a person can only be saved by attending a church service.

    Sounds like a 1-2-3 -Repeat after me....
     
  13. RLBosley

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    Yup. Agreed. :thumbs:
     
  14. Revmitchell

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    I doubt anyone has been taught that. I think people have come to rely on that which is a discipleship issue, but no one has taught that.
     
  15. Jerome

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    Sounds like you are "projecting" onto the OP quote. From adding the concept of "invitation" in the title (Salty), which was latched onto and tweaked into "altar call" (Bosley), then the leap to charging popish recitation, 123 repeat, etc.

    You're far afield from what the initial quote actually said.
     
  16. Revmitchell

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    I do not agree with the sentiment in the op but your position is an extreme in the other direction.
     
  17. RLBosley

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    How? I have no problem with the preacher telling the lost that may be present that they need to come to Christ. I think it should be done.

    However the "traditional" invitation/altar call is not the same and should be abandoned.
     
  18. DHK

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    If one is in a larger church I think it would be proper to do so.
    Not necessarily an altar call, or even asking for a show of hands, but just closing his sermon with a concise gospel message and/or call to come to Him--whichever way the Pastor is led to close the service.
     
  19. JonC

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    I think that this is the big issue when it comes to "alter calls." Many have negative experiences of something that is not what a great number of churches practice as an "alter call." I suppose this is a prejudice not unlike many others...a broad based assumption based on more localized experiences. Others define the term in an abnormal manner and miss the discussion entirely (e.g., not too long ago someone commented on approaching a wooden alter for salvation as an "alter call").

    But the gospel message includes a call to respond, an invitation,...i.e., a call to repent and believe. John wrote his Gospel for that specific reason...so that they may believe. Just like the preaching of Peter and Paul, I think that when we present the gospel message we are to voice those same concentrations to unbelieving audiences. But the "gospel message" apart from a call to respond is no gospel at all. My experience has been that "alter calls" were opportunities for people who are being drawn to God, who are wrestling (either cognitively or spiritually) with the truths of the gospel, to speak with someone about the gospel message. The term that often comes to mind in terms of conducting an "alter call" in this manner is the command to "disciple." This is a verb...it is a command to action. We are to disciple, not just to toss out information and ideas. Hence an opportunity to speak with someone after the gospel has been delivered.

    The question then is whether or not the gospel message should be given at the conclusion of every sermon to the church. I do not think it necessary (as I believe that sermons given to the church are primarily focused on the church as a body of believers and to strengthen the saints to function within the Body of Christ) but I do think it a good idea (as within the church as a community of professing Christians, there will be wheat and tares...and others may wander in the building).
     
  20. Revmitchell

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    Why? because of the poor characterizations and over generalizations of it?

    I do not think you and I will see eye to eye on this. I am not a Calvinist
     

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