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Why our Community feels Hard

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Why does our community feel hard? Four reasons listed below

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John 4:35 KJV 1900
Say not ye, There are yet four months, and then cometh harvest? behold, I say unto you, Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields; for they are white already to harvest.
.3
John 15:1–8 KJV 1900
I am the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman. Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit. Now ye are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you. Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me. I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing. If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned. If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you. Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples.
Colossians 1:5–7 KJV 1900
For the hope which is laid up for you in heaven, whereof ye heard before in the word of the truth of the gospel; Which is come unto you, as it is in all the world; and bringeth forth fruit, as it doth also in you, since the day ye heard of it, and knew the grace of God in truth: As ye also learned of Epaphras our dear fellowservant, who is for you a faithful minister of Christ;

I. It’s not Really Being Evangelized

In Jerusalem, the Christians were accused of saturating the city with the gospel. The authorities complained to the apostles, “Ye have filled Jerusalem with your doctrine” (read ). This should be the goal of people who were commanded by Jesus to, “Preach the gospel to every creature” ().The fact is, that most cities we label as gospel-hardened are really gospel-ignorant.
If there is little spreading of the gospel going on in your town, there is something you can do about it. It isn’t the town that’s so hard; the problem is that the church is not really evangelistic.

II. Because we are not really filled with the Holy Spirit

Our witness to Christ is supposed to be given in the power of the Spirit of God. The Lord Jesus made this clear before He went back to Heaven.
Acts 1:8 KJV 1900
But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.
Acts 1:8 KJV 1900
But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.
Luke 24:46-49
Luke 24:46–49 KJV 1900
And said unto them, Thus it is written, and thus it behoved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day: And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. And ye are witnesses of these things. And, behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you: but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high.
The bible Teaches that we must be “endued with power from on High.” In order to effectively preach the gospel, we must be willing to be filled with the Spirit!
Acts 5:32 KJV 1900
And we are his witnesses of these things; and so is also the Holy Ghost, whom God hath given to them that obey him.
The night before He died on the cross, our Lord introduced His disciples to the new ministry of the Holy Spirit, which would begin on the day of Pentecost. He would live within them, and would act as their “Comforter” (Helper), giving them the power to obey the commands of Christ (see ). He explained His role in our witnessing with these words:
John 15:26–27 KJV 1900
But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me: And ye also shall bear witness, because ye have been with me from the beginning.
John 16:7–8 KJV 1900
Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you. And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment:
The Holy Spirit in believers will reprove the world and prepare lost men to receive the Saviour. With the Holy Spirit testifying to the truth as we witness for Jesus, sinners will see their need of Jesus. In this way, we can expect to bear fruit (read ).
The Holy Spirit in believers will reprove the world and prepare lost men to receive the Saviour. With the Holy Spirit testifying to the truth as we witness for Jesus, sinners will see their need of Jesus. In this way, we can expect to bear fruit (read ).
Now every Christian receives the Spirit when He believes in Jesus (), but every believer, thus sealed with the Holy Spirit, is commanded to be filled with the Spirit (). That happens when we surrender to obey the Lord Jesus, no matter what (see and 15:14). Before fulfilling our horizontal duty to evangelize, we must address the vertical issues we have with God, just as the first Christians did in the days before Pentecost. When we line up with Jesus and are thus abiding in Him, we are filled with the Spirit for evangelism and our witness is made effective.
Spirit-filled Christians have power in their witness, and men will be saved (look at ). God gave us all we need to meet the needs of our town (), but the town seems hard when sins and rebellion keep us from being filled with the Spirit. We need to get on our knees before we start blaming our town.

III. Because Satanic influences are not being restricted

Often, we fail to fix spiritual problems because we fail to take into account activity in the invisible world.
Ephesians 6:11–13 KJV 1900
Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.
We must “resist the devil” for him to “flee” from us (see and ).
We must “resist the devil” for him to “flee” from us (see and ).
Sometimes the problem in our town is in the invisible world. Perhaps we are being opposed in our work of evangelism and preaching by satanic principalities and powers. Thankfully, the Lord Jesus Christ defeated the devil and his angels (), and we can stand against them successfully in the authority of our Lord. In prayer, let’s bind them and bring them to defeat. It can be done, and often must be done before the truth can advance.

IV. Because nobody has had the patience to Prevail

Persistence is an essential element in winning spiritual victories. Have you run across the Scriptures that call on us to persist and not give up (such as , , and )? In the New Testament, the work of evangelism is compared to the work of farming. We plow, sow, water, and reap, but it is God that gives the increase. Farming requires patience and persistence (be sure to read , , and ).
We must stay at it if we are to reach our town: stay at evangelizing, stay at praying, stay at seeking the Lord, stay at letting God lead us, stay at living for Jesus, and stay at believing for results. When our church persists in such things, it looks like the church in Acts!

CONCLUSION

Often, a town gets the reputation of hardness because nobody has stayed at it long enough to reap a harvest. The city of Ephesus finally saw the triumph of the gospel after several years of sowing the seed in the power of the Spirit. Read the story again in . Somebody will have to persist in the important work of getting the love of Jesus to everyone in your town, and sticking with people until they are made into His disciples!
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