King's Business - 1911-04

Soul Winning.

A. T. Pierson, D. D. F IRST of all let us remember that our subject is "Soul Winning." We are told in Proverbs 11:30 that "he that winneth souls is wise." This might be translated, "he that winneth souls must be wise, or it is a wise man that winneth souls." There are many people who think that what the Bible asks of believers is to save souls and in their impetuous zeal they approach men and women without method and without a study of the peculiar circumstances characteristic of those whom they seek to bless. Sometimes without any regard to the fitness of times or seasons or the presence of others. Their methods are abrupt and sometimes verge on rudeness and incivility, and the consequence is that instead of winning they repel and instead of bless- ing they rather prove a damage and drive from the gospel and the cross those who should be won. Now with this thought emphatic as the one great conception before' us, let us consider what are the elements that enter into soul winning. We name first of all a personal and assured knowledge of Christ and salvation. Those who are uncertain of their own standing lack solid ground pn which to stand and their approach to others is like a man that slips as he seeks to advance, or like one who in muddy places finds his feet to stick and become entangled. But when one knows that he himself is saved and has no room for doubt, he can speak to others with a quietness of confidence which is born only of such as- surance. We cannot imagine pentecostal blessing without this pente- costal assurance. When the spirit of God descended upon those early disciples the first result was to make them confident of the message they were delivering and that there was salvation in no other than the Lord Jesus, but that there was salvation in Him. That when he was proclaimed faithfully, prayerfully and constantly the Gospel would be the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth. In this confidence more progress was made in the first thirty years of the church's history than in some respects has been made in all the centuries since. Thev went from house to house and from place to place constantly bearing witness that Jehovah was the Christ. They told men whether they were friends or foes that there was in Him life and salvation. Whosoever believeth hath eternal life,—not shall have it or may have it or in some cases will have it, but that it is the in- stantaneous gift of God to every believer, and when this confidence does not exist there can be no soul winning. The testimony of the Gospel becomes a parrot like repetition of a message,—-the words are there but the power is trone and this is the meaning of bearing wit- ness. The word witness is from the old Saxon root wittan, which means,

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