The Proper Evangelistic Viewpoint

by Mike Ratliff

Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving. At the same time, pray also for us, that God may open to us a door for the word, to declare the mystery of Christ, on account of which I am in prison– that I may make it clear, which is how I ought to speak. (Colossians 4:2-4 ESV)

From the moment the Lord opened my heart to understand the necessity of having the right understanding of salvation in light of His sovereignty; I have been seeking to understand how He saves His people. I dug deep into reformation theology books and articles, prayed for wisdom and understanding, and listened to godly reformed teaching and preaching. I now have a fairly complete understanding of the doctrines of grace, the five solas, and salvation by grace. However, I have realized that majoring in these doctrines to the exclusion of evangelism is a huge error. Being a logical and reasoning disciple of Jesus Christ, I became perplexed about how to reconcile, within my service of my Lord, how to preach and teach the gospel to the lost according the Great Commission (Matthew 28:18-20) while never compromising God’s sovereignty to the determent of His glory. Continue reading

The Sword of Truth

by Mike Ratliff

“Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I have not come to bring peace, but a sword.” (Matthew 10:34 ESV)

For as long as I can remember, I have heard stressed in our churches that peace and coexistence must be sought above all. We must not do anything to offend anyone. The one and only church discipline event that I have witnessed came as a complete surprise to most of the congregation. An adulterous husband was cast out of the church because he would not repent by returning to his family. This event brought to light in my heart that there is a gray area that contains both the necessity of seeking peace and fellowship within the body of Christ and the fact that we must not allow doctrinal truths to become diluted with the poison of compromise. Continue reading