• Mike

    Why is accepting the Gospel equivalent to coming back to a church service?

  • Savoy

    Wow!!! Of all, I think this one hit home the most! Thank you!!

  • Jack Schmitt

    I agree with you up to a point, Pastor Rick, but I am very put off by the fact that you actually ENCOURAGE people to put-off making the decision to accept Christ into their lives. The truth is that the “salvation decision” is not even in the same league as marriage and career decisions! And with all due respect, who are you to give people an excuse to wait, when the Holy Spirit may want the person to respond right now? You’re assuming that that individual will come back or will get a chance somewhere else, at some other time. None of us are guaranteed a tomorrow. Yes, high pressure tactics certainly can be counter-productive, but so can delaying.

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  • Pastor Brian Smith

    Amen to this article! One way we have found to lower the “pressure” to make a commitment is to gently invite people to talk to a prayer team member after the service. Members of the prayer team are trained for leading someone in how to make a decision for Jesus. This method is much less public than an altar call or other “whole assembly” method, and a few people have committed their lives to Jesus in this way.

  • Pastor Tina Suwa

    Sometimes iam disappointed that people who already are hungering for GOD dont get to make commitments but reading your piece has helped me a lot. While i wait i will pray that the people make strong and permanent commitments.Thank you Pastor.

  • Campbell Adenodi

    Pastor Rick is right. Conviction of sinners to Christ is the prerogative of Holy Spirit. Once the vessel has delivered the Good news, there might be instant acceptance of Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour (Instant Salvation which might be lost considering the parable of the sower) and some might differ till another time to gain full understanding of whom he or she is believing. Thus both approaches can be employed considering which society or audience you are ministering to. Paul planted Apollo watered the increase comes from Him alone – Lord Jesus Christ in the power of the Holy Ghost.

  • George

    I agree with you,time to be given for decision making.

  • Tim

    I agree with the basic premise, however the decision of salvation is life or death. Because of the uncertainty of death, I think we are to be bold in our invitations. We are not talking about a normal decision. The Bible says “Today is the day of salvation, behold now is the accepted time.”

  • PastorVLT

    I agree with Betty…the problem of doing “gimmick” preaching on special days like Easter/Christmas/Mother’s Day (and I am guilty of doing my share) is when they come back to visit again and there is no “show” they tend to be disappointed.

  • Chris

    Great article!

    “And there went great multitudes with him: and he turned, and said unto them, If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple. And whosoever doth not bear his cross, and come after me, cannot be my disciple. For which of you, intending to build a tower, sitteth not down first, and counteth the cost, whether he have sufficient to finish it? Lest haply, after he hath laid the foundation, and is not able to finish it, all that behold it begin to mock him, Saying, This man began to build, and was not able to finish. Or what king, going to make war against another king, sitteth not down first, and consulteth whether he be able with ten thousand to meet him that cometh against him with twenty thousand? Or else, while the other is yet a great way off, he sendeth an ambassage, and desireth conditions of peace. So likewise, whosoever he be of you that forsaketh not all that he hath, he cannot be my disciple.” (Luke 14:25–33)

  • Dr Linda

    excellent – this is so important, thank you Rick for keeping us on the right track.

  • Pastor Scott Allen

    I would like to change our sanctuary into the garden tomb. A very real visualization and speak on the empty tomb means a full life

    • Betty

      i wouldn’t ever listen to a message about a tomb. it seems like you missed ricks point