Sometimes, when you introduce one acquaintance to another you’ll do so with the question “Have you met _____?” I have a couple of friends whose names would fit nicely into the title sentence, above. That is, with the addition of the word “yet” before the question mark.
I think that describes these friends with greater accuracy because it suggests that these extroverts have probably already introduced themselves! They eagerly walk up to people they’ve never met because they would like to meet them. They’re not running for office, simply enlarging their circles of acquaintances and potential friends.
We had such a man in our midst at Redeemer this weekend. His name is Gary Thies and he serves as a Mission Development Counselor for the Lutheran Church – Missouri Synod. He works through a marvelous organization known as Mission Central, where he is the director. Throughout our services and the Bible class this affable brother in Christ Jesus came back, time and again, to a variation of the title of this blog. His question, which he would encourage everyone to adopt, was not “Have you met Jesus, yet?” but “Do you know Jesus?”
The more I think about it, that’s a wonderful way to describe part of our task as Christians, called by the Lord Jesus to be His witnesses in the world (Acts 1:8). It is more than a question about where one might attend worship or to which denomination a person might belong. It cuts right to the heart of the matter. “Do you know Jesus?”
It helps to consider where the conversation could go from there. The follow up to that question’s answer can be (a) a wonderfully encouraging talk between brothers and sisters in Christ, (b) an invitation to come to worship, or (c) an opportunity to clarify a misconception someone might be harboring regarding the message of the Bible or the work of the church.
Our message needs to be one that centers on the Person, the words, and the work of Christ Jesus. He is the One whose suffering, death, and resurrection brings forgiveness, meaning, and everlasting life to all who put their trust in Him.