OPENING PRAYER: Father, please help me to fulfil Your mandate in hospital and prison evangelism.
PREVIOUS KNOWLEDGE: The leader should ask the members to explain how a believer can be like Christ in mission work.
MEMORY VERSE: Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me. – Matthew 25:36
BIBLE TEXT: Matthew 25:31-46 (KJV)
Mat 25:31 “When the Son of Man comes as King and all the angels with him, he will sit on his royal throne,
Mat 25:32 and the people of all the nations will be gathered before him. Then he will divide them into two groups, just as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats.
Mat 25:33 He will put the righteous people at his right and the others at his left.
Mat 25:34 Then the King will say to the people on his right, ‘Come, you that are blessed by my Father! Come and possess the kingdom which has been prepared for you ever since the creation of the world.
Mat 25:35 I was hungry and you fed me, thirsty and you gave me a drink; I was a stranger and you received me in your homes,
Mat 25:36 naked and you clothed me; I was sick and you took care of me, in prison and you visited me.’
Mat 25:37 The righteous will then answer him, ‘When, Lord, did we ever see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you a drink?
Mat 25:38 When did we ever see you a stranger and welcome you in our homes, or naked and clothe you?
Mat 25:39 When did we ever see you sick or in prison, and visit you?’
Mat 25:40 The King will reply, ‘I tell you, whenever you did this for one of the least important of these followers of mine, you did it for me!’
Mat 25:41 “Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Away from me, you that are under God’s curse! Away to the eternal fire which has been prepared for the Devil and his angels!
Mat 25:42 I was hungry but you would not feed me, thirsty but you would not give me a drink;
Mat 25:43 I was a stranger but you would not welcome me in your homes, naked but you would not clothe me; I was sick and in prison but you would not take care of me.’
Mat 25:44 Then they will answer him, ‘When, Lord, did we ever see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and we would not help you?’
Mat 25:45 The King will reply, ‘I tell you, whenever you refused to help one of these least important ones, you refused to help me.’
Mat 25:46 These, then, will be sent off to eternal punishment, but the righteous will go to eternal life.”
Prisons in Nigeria have now be rebranded as Correctional Centres. Hospitals and prisons are unpleasant places to be admitted into. The two places are for people that are going through storms of life, afflictions, suffering or trials occasioned by sins, miscarriage of justice or in some cases it may be a test of their faith like Job etc.. – Job 2:7, Genesis 3:11, 4:8.
Many of the people in the hospitals and prisons are desperately in need of divine intervention and are therefore ready to receive anyone with a solution to their problems.
Churches need to encourage/create the hospital and prison evangelism units and strengthen their house fellowship centres to reach out to such souls in our hospitals and prisons sometimes called “the affliction zone” as all these souls are important to God. Christ’s ministry, when He was here on earth, was heavenly places on this zone. – Luke 4:18, 1 Peter 2:21-24
LESSON AIM: To examine hospital and prison evangelism holistically based on biblical perspectives.
TEACHING OBJECTIVES: At the end of the lesson, members should be able to:
i. Follow strictly bible based hospital and prison evangelism.
ii. Identify the benefits that accompany this.
TEXT REVIEW: MATTHEW 25:31-46
i. It is pertinent to note the wording of this text; two groups of people will stand before the king.
ii. The first group of people are known for Christian Social Responsibility (CSR) as part of evangelism while the second group of people sees this as a burden. It should not be done at all.
iii. The first group is given a place in heaven but the second group is sent to hellfire.
TEACHING METHOD: The leader should use the teaching/lecture method.
TIME MANAGEMENT: Share the teaching time using the suggested time schedule.
LESSON OUTLINES: There is one outline:
WHY DO WE EVANGELISE THE AFFLICTED PEOPLE?
- Sin can cause long-term internal suffering or curse. – Genesis 4:6-7, Romans 8:18-21, hence they need salvation.
- To encourage the afflicted to trust God through suffering. – Job 16:16, Hebrews 3:17-19
- Sometimes the suffering or affliction can be honour in disguise. – Acts 16:28-30
- To preach to true believers that suffering for Christ’s sake is a privilege. – Philippians 1:29, 1 Peter 2:21-24
- To offer to help hands and bear their burden. – Matthew 25:40
ACTIVITY: Is it proper to evangelise prison inmates? Why?
SUMMARY: We are mandated to evangelise all nations of the world. This means everywhere, even prisons and hospitals. Please start now if you are yet to.
CONCLUSION: Current research and studies show that more and more people are getting into affliction zones, mainly because of an increase in the incidence of diseases and injustices in many countries/governments. But this gives us an opportunity to reach out to such souls for salvation because in their affliction they are waiting for a solution and would readily accept any divine intervention. Our house fellowship centres and churches should begin to set aside days for hospital and prison evangelism.
- Father, thank You for the salvation of my soul.
- Father, have mercy on the sick and those in captivity all over the world.
- Father, revive the hospital and prison evangelism units in our churches and house fellowship centres.
- Father, reward Daddy G.O.’s passion for the souls in hospitals and prisons.
- Individual prayer.
ASSIGNMENT: Diligently carry out all the daily tasks outlined in the GOLDEN DIET below.
GOLDEN DIET FOR THE WEEK (print or write it out so that you can participate daily):
God is a specialist in caring for the hurt and afflicted. – 2 Kings 4:32-37
Jesus teaches, preaches and cares for others. – Luke 10:29-37
Learn and follow Jesus’ examples. – John 11:32-44
Have you encouraged someone in a difficult situation lately? – Romans 1:6-9, 1 Thessalonians 5:11
Go out to the affliction zone, God may be giving you a soul to be registered in heaven. – Philippians 3:7-11
Suffering or afflicted for Christ’s sake is a privilege. – Philippians 1:29
Join the hospital and prison evangelism today. – John 16:33.
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I know you might agree with some of the points that I have raised in this article. You might not agree with some of the issues raised. Let me know your views about the topic discussed. We will appreciate it if you can drop your comment. Thanks in anticipation.
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