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Ron Hutchcraft~ Reaching the Global Youth Culture

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Ron Hutchcraft~ Reaching the Global Youth Culture

Post  Admin on Sat 05 Nov 2011, 8:30 pm

Friday, November 4, 2011
Subject: D, Here's "Say it Plainly" by Ron Hutchcraft

Reaching the Global Youth Culture: How to Understand
and Rescue Lost Young People (Day 11 of 15)
They are the largest generation of young people in history, the most unreached generation in history, and the most reachable generation in history. If today's young people leave their early years without Christ, they will probably live without Christ, die without Christ, and spend eternity without Christ! No one who has answered Jesus' call to "go into all the world and preach the good news" (Mark 16:15) can ignore half the world - especially the half who are, by far, most likely to come to Christ. It's time to rescue lost young people!
Day 11 - Say it Plainly
Last time we found that if our message begins with a need they have because of their sin problem, they may realize the Good News about Jesus is for them. They don't care about the disease of sin, but they really care about its symptoms—loneliness, uncontrollable dark feelings, pointlessness and despair, emotional pain, and failure and guilt. As we lovingly speak to young people about a need they care about, we have touched a sin-symptom that opens their heart. Once they understand the terminal spiritual cancer of sin, they will understand what incredible Good News the death and resurrection of Jesus are for them!
Are you explaining the Gospel clearly?
Christians speak their own language, and I call it "Christianese. " Unreached young people have no idea what we're talking about! Every missionary to a different culture knows that you must translate the message into the language spoken by the person you are trying to reach. When you go to reach the young people around you, you are becoming a cross-cultural missionary. Those young people are the "inhabitants" of a global youth culture that is radically different from our Christian culture—and widely separated from it. If we are going to break through to dying young people, we must do what every effective missionary does—we must translate Jesus' message, not just transmit it.
Jesus provided a wonderful example for us as He jumped all the cultural gaps to reach the woman at the well. He did not talk with her in religious words. He talked in plain language about "living water," being "thirsty again," and "a spring of water welling up" (John 4:10-13). Jesus communicated life-or-death truth in non-religious language, and that is how we can introduce a young person to Jesus.
Words such as "born again," "saved," "accept" or "receive Christ," "sin," "believe," and "become a Christian" are either not understood or misunderstood by most lost young people. If they are from another religious background, those words are either unfamiliar or convey a totally different meaning from what they mean Biblically. If they have no religious background, "Christianese" sounds like a foreign language to them. If they have some Christian background, they may be immune to the Christian words they have heard so much but never acted upon.
It is critical for a "missionary" to young people to speak in words they can understand by retraining himself to avoid "Christianese" and to explain the Gospel in plain words. When Paul asked his friends to pray for his presentation of the Gospel, he asked them to "pray that I may proclaim it clearly as I should" (Colossians 4:4). When Jesus told the parable of the four soils, He pointed out that the only difference in the fourth, truly fruitful, response to the seed was this: "The one who received the seed that fell on good soil is the man who hears the word and understands it" (Matthew 13:23). All of the "soils" heard the word; the only one that truly bore fruit was the one that understood it. That is why we who communicate the life-or-death message of Jesus must translate it from "Christianese" into words a lost heart can understand.
For example, I have found it helpful to explain that:
* sin is running your own life when God was supposed to,
* believing is grabbing Jesus like a drowning person would grab a lifeguard and saying, "You're my only hope!",
* repenting is turning your back on "my way" living to living "God's way," and
* a Savior is someone who rescues you from a deadly situation that you cannot rescue yourself from.
Many a young person who may appear to be rejecting our Savior may actually be stumbling over our vocabulary. When the message is life-or-death, we have to do whatever it takes to make sure that message is clear.
Tomorrow, we will discuss how to present the importance of a relationship with Jesus Christ.
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© Ronald P. Hutchcraft • Distributed by Ron Hutchcraft Ministries, Inc.
"Reaching the Global Youth Culture: How to Understand and Rescue Lost Young People" by Ronald P. Hutchcraft is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution- Noncommercial- No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. Based on a work at www.Hutchcraft,com
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