Why We Need A Plan: 7 - The Day Of Small Things

We’re still considering what R. A. Torrey has to say about the importance of “personal work”, also known as “personal dealing”, or “personal evangelism”. Here’s how he ends his account.

6. It meets the definite need, and every need of the person dealt with.
Even when men are aroused and convicted, and perhaps converted, by a sermon, personal work is necessary to bring out into clear light and into a satisfactory experience one whom the sermon has thus aroused, convicted and converted.

7. It avails where other methods fail.
One of my best workers told me a few weeks ago that she had attended church for years, and had wanted to become a Christian. She had listened to some of the best-known preachers, and still was unsaved, but the very first inquiry meeting she went into she was saved because some one came and dealt with her personally.

8. It produces very large results.
There is no comparison whatever between what will be effected by good preaching and what will be effected by constant personal work. Take a church of one hundred members; such a church under an excellent pastor would be considered as doing an exceptionally good work if on an average fifty were added annually to this membership. But suppose that that church was trained to do personal work, and that fifty of the one hundred members actually went at it. Certainly one a month won to Christ by each one would not be a large average. That would be six hundred a year instead of the fifty mentioned above. A church of many members, with the most powerful preaching possible, that depends upon the minister alone to win men to Christ by his preaching, would not accomplish anything like what would be accomplished by a church with a comparatively poor preacher, where the membership generally were personal workers.

Well, what about that last paragraph? “But suppose...” Is what follows in any way feasible, in our day - a day, as it is so often said, “of small things”? May I invite you to turn to Zechariah, chapter 4 and verse 10? “For whoever has despised the day of small things shall rejoice, and shall see the plumb line in the hand of Zerubbabel.”

It might be worth spending some time putting that text into its context, before coming to a conclusion on the question.

To be continued.