John 1 shows us how Jesus’ first disciples were called. Two disciples of John the Baptist responded to Jesus’ invitation “Come, and you will see” (v. 39, NASB). The next day, Jesus called Philip, who then told his brother, Nathanael, that Jesus of Nazareth was the long-awaited Messiah. Nathanael famously responded, “‘Can any good thing come out of Nazareth?’ Philip said to him, ‘Come and see’” (v. 46, NKJV).
That simple invitation is a friendly, non-threatening approach. We can use it today as we share the gospel with everyone we can. Does God exist, and if He does, what can we know about Him? Come and see. Do I truly face God’s judgment, and if I do, is there a way that I can be rescued? Come and see. Can I learn to effectively share the gospel? Can my local church develop nurturing family and/or common interest Bible study groups? Can my local congregation intentionally become a “Welcoming Church”? Come and see.
The theme overarching our entire GC evangelism initiative is “Come and See.” All the training opportunities and materials being made available by our three teams — Personal Evangelism, Small Group Ministries, and Welcoming Church — and by our Publications ministry are (or soon will be) available to you and your congregation. Come and see.
This is also the theme for our 2023 General Conference Convention, scheduled Monday evening, July 10, through Saturday night, July 15, 2023, in Covington, Kentucky. The primary purpose of GC conventions is to allow adult members to gather and conduct the business of the General Conference as required by our bylaws. That gathering also allows us to worship together, be instructed by God’s Word together, fellowship together, and learn and grow together as the Church of God (Seventh Day) United States and Canada.
Should you involve yourself and your congregation in the GC evangelism initiative? Is it worth the time and expense to attend our GC conventions? Come and see!
— Loren Stacy