A good, successful gospel meeting doesn’t happen by accident. It’s the result of careful, detailed work and planning by everyone — the local church, individual members and families, and the visiting preacher. It’s an investment of time, money and other resources. But sadly, there are some brethren who have grown weary of gospel meetings. They’re outdated, archaic and a tradition of men, according to the naysayers. The question is even raised if there is really any value in having gospel meetings anymore. With our meeting at Tidewater at the end of the month, let me suggest to you four reasons why gospel meetings are valuable.
The value of reaching the lost: There are two types of people described in scripture — those who are lost and those who are saved by the blood of Jesus Christ. In order for a lost sinner to obey the gospel, they must first hear the gospel (Rom. 10:17). A gospel meeting provides that opportunity. There are plenty of prospects (John 4:35). Who are they? Friends, relatives, neighbors, co-workers, classmates, and even ourselves. We are people of influence; gospel meetings allow us to influence.
The value of worshiping and edifying: It is an opportunity to worship God (Ps. 122:1). As a Christian, I should be excited about any and every opportunity to worship God. It is also an opportunity to edify the brethren, and I can do that by participating. Welcome visitors. Sing in a spirited manner. Those who lead, lead with enthusiasm. Give God the best (Col. 3:16-17, 23). Pay close attention to the sermons.
The value of learning and growing (II Pet. 3:18): Gospel meetings proclaim the word of God. Nothing more, nothing less. It is a spiritual feast. A gospel meeting is an opportunity to fulfill that hunger and thirst (Matt. 5:6). But it’s also an opportunity for self-examination (II Cor. 13:5). Maybe I need a shot in the arm or a jumpstart to my spiritual life. Let us prepare our hearts to receive God’s Word (Ezra 7:10).
The value of spiritual over worldly (Matt. 6:33): A gospel meeting is an opportunity to demonstrate our priorities and our attitude toward the gospel. Additionally, it also exposes one’s priorities in life. We prepare for social occasions, but have we placed an equal amount of emphasis to attend our gospel meeting? This is “our” meeting. Let us take ownership of this meeting and make it a priority to be here.