An Answer for author Dan Kimball

  The Longer We Are Christians

"…if the below chart/timeline is true for Christians who become more separated from non-Christians the longer they are Christian, how does this lessen the impact we have as salt and light in our communities?

The irony is that we are on a mission for Jesus, but the more older and mature we become as Christians (and hopefully wiser), the less non-Christians then get to see and experience Jesus in us. I am talking about actual relationships and friendships where trust and dialogue are built with people who get to know us personally, not just street witnessing type of a thing to strangers.
Instead of only circling in closer with all Christians as we get older and more mature in our faith, shouldn't it almost be the opposite as we grow older? Of course, provided we maintain Christian community in the midst of being on a mission for Jesus, as we all need Christian community. But it seems ironic that when we mature and know Scripture better, and Jesus better and are transformed all the more by the Spirit - that less and less non-Christians get to really experience that through relationships with us since we are more and more entrenched in the Christian sub-culture.

  We do not hesitate to give answer… Who were the people Jesus & His disciples spent a lot of time with? Their meaningful encounters with individuals seem brief to us; often measured to minutes or hours of a single day; not long enough to endeavor actual relationships and friendships where trust and dialogue are built with people who get to know us personally

  Dear friend, we're mistakenly looking for people to grow to trust us, so that they might also come to trust Jesus Christ. Big mistake…

  Here are a few notes pertaining:
1) There is an urgency in the gospel of Jesus Christ. (without Jesus Christ, your friend-to-be will die in his/her sins) Our delaying suggests: that person's life forever is/was not as much important to us. [Acts 22:16; II Corinthians 6:1-2]
2) It is the power of God unto salvation. The message of Christ is not dependent upon social merit of any person carrying His message of life. [Acts 2; Romans 1:16]
3) Building relationships does not equal "making disciples" of His. Salvation & discipleship begin with repentance and baptism into Jesus Christ. Rather than presenting salvation as a prize of relationship, genuine relationship is realized in Christ (no greater prize). [Philippians 3:14; I Thessalonian 1:5]
4) Fraud by proxy: messenger regarded as the mediator. If a man or woman does come to acknowledges Christ in you without fully turning to Him, they have not yet entered into His salvation. Many become entangled in this error, seeking God through the bearer of good news while praying for their own salvation. [I Corinthians 1:12-13; I Timothy 2:1-7]

They will know we are His disciples by our love for one another. [John 13:34-25]

Consider examining the New Testament writings carefully, with an eye for what leads men to God; how they come to repentance and salvation.