When objections arise before you have shared the gospel
I call these “premature objections,” because in case your discussion of the question turns into an argument, your conversation may end before the listener has heard the gospel. Since it is the “gospel” that is the “power of God unto salvation,” it is worth it to try to bring the subject back to the gospel, and then return to the objection later, so that even if the person does not agree with your view on the objection, and even if the person then shuts off communication with you because of anger over the disagreement, at least you know that the person has heard the gospel. God can still make use of that message, which is now in the person’s memory bank.
If you try to return the subject to the gospel, and the person refuses, then of course go ahead and talk about the objection. Even if the conversation ends before the person has heard the gospel, you can attempt to discuss in such a way that the person will be willing to talk with you another time.
The best model known to this author for tactfully bringing the subject back to the gospel is that provided by Donald A. Abdon in his book Training and Equipping the Saints(Indianapolis: Parish Leadership Seminars, 1977).
On page 232, Rev. Abdon promotes these 4 principles:
1. Determine what the real objection is.
2. Accept the Objection
3. Reassert the Subject
4. Reaffirm the Gospel
His book then continues with dozens of examples showing how to apply these principles. I have added the list of topics below, so you can search for the example number in the examples found below by using your computer’s search feature (use control-F or command-F, then type just the number in the search box. The number in the list will probably come up first, and then you will scroll until you the the number highlighted again).
LIST OF TOPICS:
Bible complaints 16; Boring 40; Busy 9; character of God 15; church complaints 11, 13; church failed me 12; church not necessary 19; clothing 32; communion 21, 33; crowds 22; death 15; embarrassed 21; fear of crowds 22; forced as child 4; golden rule 5; gone on weekends 26; good enough 2; grudge 24; handle own problems 36; health problems 30; husband 6; hypocrites 7; interpretation 29; Jesus not God 18; know I should go 45; minister problem 20; money 25; not free 10; not interested 8; not ready 39; not your business 28; pastor problem 20; religions are the same 3; religion at school is enough 25; save self 2; science 14; self-righteous 1; sick 30; sleep 23; straighten out life 38; suffering 15; take chances 7; transportation lacking 37; wait for spouse 6, 31; war 15; weekends not free 26; work on Sunday 10; world religions 3.
Here are Pastor Abdon’s examples, published here with his permission:
GROUP 1: SUBSTITUTES FOR CHRIST
The objections in this group seem quite diverse. Actually, they all stem from the same basic problem—the attempt to cope with the diversity of religious viewpoints and competing ideologies by reducing them all to the lowest common denominator. IN ACTUALITY, THE REAL OBJECTION IS TO THE EXCLUSIVE CLAIMS AND THE CENTRALITY OF CHRIST. He is not one option among many; HE IS THE ONLY OPTION FOR SALVATION. These objections lead one off the subject because we end up discussing “religions” or “religious viewpoints” instead of the person’s relationship to THE PERSON, JESUS CHRIST. Now let’s see if we can handle these objections and get back on the subject.
Objection #3: “All religions are the same.” .
Caller: “I know that there are lot of people who think that and there are certain similarities in religions. But there is one basic difference. A religion is something people do, or practice. Christianity isn’t a religion; it’s a faith. Christ is the center of that faith. To be a Christian is to know and believe in a Person—Jesus Christ. He’s the One we came to talk to you about.”
Comment: You will note that we could spend all night talking about “religions.” We came to talk about this person’s faith or lack of it. Get back on the subject. Note that we use his concept (religions) to get back to the real subject. Go back into the subject where the individual came out. ,
Objection #5: “My religion is the Golden Rule.”
Caller: “I’m happy to hear that. The Golden Rule talks about doing to others what we would like them to do to us. The real idea behind the Golden Rule is love, andthat’s what we came to talk to you about—the man who formulated the Golden Rule — Jesus Christ. There was a man who knew how to love. Let me tell you about Him.”
Objection #14: “Religion is too unscientific.” i
Caller: “You know, you are absolutely right. Religion is totally unscientific. Science deals with the five senses: what we can see, touch, taste, feel and smell. That’s thescientific side of life. There is another side of life that is just as real and that’s the spiritual realm, our spiritual life. Jesus Christ said that there was truth in this realm too. In fact, He said, “I am the Truth.” Let me tell you about the truth of God’.s love for people we can know in Him.”
Objection #18: “Jesus was only another prophet.”
Caller: “I see you’ve given this some thought and have heard about Jesus Christ. You’re right. He was a prophet. But He was so much more. than that. He once said that He came to fulfill the Law and the prophets. He was the One the prophets all talked about as the promised Savior. Let me tell you about Him.”
GROUP 2: SELF-RIGHTEOUSNESS
Basically, all objections to God or His Word demonstrate self-righteousness in some way. The objections handled here are specifically rooted in self-righteousness as an overt objection to the Gospel. These objections are some of the most difficult to deal with until we understand that THE PERSON WHO USES OVERT SELF-RIGHTEOUSNESS AS AN OBJECTION KNOWS THAT HE IS WRONG. WE DO NOT ATTEMPT TO DEFEND OURSELVES OR PROVE OUR “RIGHTEOUSNESS” UNLESS WE KNOW THAT WE ARE WRONG. TRUTH AND RIGHTEOUSNESS NEED NO DEFENDING. The real problem behind all of these objections IS THE FEAR THAT THEY WILL BE “FOUND OUT” OR “PROVEN WRONG.” Do not attempt to argue with this type of person or the communication will collapse almost immediately. Help this person to understand that he can give up the self-justification game through the righteousness of Christ.
Objection #1: Self-righteousness, per se. “I’m as good as the next man. I try to do right. I wouldn’t hurt a fly. I try to keep the Ten Commandments.”
Caller: “I’m glad to hear that you are concerned about moral things. Far too many people today don’t care. But the great moral code that underlies all moral codes, the Ten Commandments, is like a balloon. It only takes one hole to break the whole thing. That’s why the New Testament says, ‘Whoever shall keep the whole Law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all.’ That’s why Jesus Christ came. He kept the Ten Commandments for us so that we wouldn’t have to be afraid of God continually. Let me tell you about how and why He did that.”
Objection #2: “I’m good enough to save myself.”
Caller: ”I know there are some people who think that; it would be true if it was human judgment we had to face. But here we are talking about the judgment of God. Someone has to answer for human sin—and Someone has—Jesus Christ. We call Him Savior because He makes it possible for us to stand before the judgment of God unafraid. Let me tell you how that happens.”
Comment: Note that our entrance was the word “save”. Salvation always implies the judgment and wrath of God in the Scriptures. Jesus Christ has endured the wrath of God for us and through faith in Him we escape that terrible fate.
Objection #8: “I’m just not interested.”
Caller: “Thank you for your honesty. I’m sure you are telling me the truth. Getting interested in God and spiritual things is about the last thing :most of us care to do. But Iknow Someone who is interested in you. He worries a lot about you and would really like to have you back in His care. His name is Jesus Christ. Let me tell you a littlebit about! how much He is concerned about you.
Objection #15: “I can’t believe in a God who allows sickness, suffering, war, and death.”
Caller: “To be truthful with you, I don’t believe in a God like that either. The implication in your statement would be that somehow God is responsible for sickness,suffering, war, and death. But you know, God has given us the awesome power to reject Him and do without Him. What’s causing man’s problems is sin, and the hatred and bickering, etc. that come from sin. Man causes most of the suffering, war, and death in this world. In fact, God was ready to suffer with us and for us, and He did. He sent His Son Jesus Christ for that. Let me tell you about Him.”
Objection #7: “I’ll take my chances.”
Caller: “I know a lot of people who feel that way. But, you know, our eternal life is one thing with which we can’t afford to take chances. If the Scriptures are right, it would be horrible to miss an eternity with God and spend it separated from Him when it could all be different. Why take chances? God sent His Son Jesus Christ so that we can be sure, absolutely certain, of His love for us and that we have eternal life. Let me tell you about Jesus Christ and how you can be sure.
Objection #28: “It’s none of your business what I do.”
“I can understand how you might feel that way. Most of us don’t really want someone snooping around in our business. There is one thing we ought to be sure about, though. Mankind felt the same way when Jesus Christ came, but God made it His business to try and win people back to His love. Jesus Christ made it His business to help us even when we didn’t know we needed it. Let me tell you about Him.”
Objection #34: Promising to Change. Confession or remorse that is not genuine is the person’s attempt to get rid of the caller. It comes out sounding this way: “Well, I know I should go to church, and I’ll be around Sunday. You can count on it.” Or, “I know I do some things wrong once in a while, but so does everybody.” BE PARTICULARLY CONSCIOUS OF THE PERSON WHO IS TRYING TO SHOO YOU OUT THE DOOR OR TELL YOU WHAT HE THINKS YOU WANT TO HEAR.
Caller: “I’m glad to hear that, but I didn’t come to talk to you about going to church Sunday or anything like that. I really came to talk to you about Someone you need toknow and who knows you—Jesus Christ. He’d like to have a word with you.”
Objection #36: “I’ll handle my own problems myself.”
Caller: “I am sure that there are many people who feel the way you do. It takes courage to be responsible for yourself. But there is one problem none of us can handle alone—sin, and the death that is sure to follow. That’s why God sent His Son Jesus Christ, to handle the greatest problem of life for us. He’s offering you and me His help and forgiveness. Let me tell you how.”
Objection #38: “I’ll straighten my life out first, then I’ll come to church.”
Caller: “You know, there are a lot of people who think that. But that is like saying that I’m sick, so I’ll wait till I get well and then go see the doctor. That’s our problem, you see. Only God can straighten out our life so that it is really good for us and pleasing to Him. That’s why God sent His Son Jesus Christ for us, to make all the bent things in our life straight. Let me tell you how He did that.”
Objection #39: “I’ll come when I’m ready.”
Caller: “That would be a good idea. Things usually work out badly when we aren’t ready to do something. But I wonder if you’ve thought about the fact that God cares about things and people being ready. Jesus even said that about our eternal life. He told His disciples that He was going back to eternity to prepare a place for them, to get things ready. Through Jesus’ death and resurrection God’s love has won our forgiveness for sin. He’s ready to take us back. He’s offering that to you as a gift through His Son Jesus. Let me tell you what He’s promising you.”
GROUP 3: BLAMING OTHER PEOPLE
The objections encountered here come from people who are not very mature emotionally. They will blame all their failings on someone else. There may be some truth to what they say in certain instances, however. For example, the person who says he had religion shoved down his throat as a child may be telling the truth. One man once told me that his father used to beat him if he didn’t go to Sunday School. That individual will be hostile toward religion and for good reason. Be aware with this type of objection, however, that there is something hypocritical under the surface of most of them. THE REAL OBJECTION HERE IS THE ATTEMPT TO TRANSFER ONE’S SPIRITUAL RESPONSIBILITY TO SOMEONE ELSE, AND THEN JUSTIFY ONE’S SPIRITUAL IRRESPONSIBILITY BECAUSE THEY FAILED TO BE RESPONSIBLE FOR HIM.
Objection #4: “I had religion shoved down my throat as a child.”
Caller: “I am really very sorry to hear that. No one should ever be forced into anything as wonderful as our relationship to God can be through Jesus Christ. But, you know, you aren’t a child anymore. I have something adult for you that any person can receive as his own — Jesus Christ — and God’s offer of love and forgiveness through Him. Let me tell you about Someone who loves you.”
Objection #6: “I am waiting for my husband or wife to do something about religion.”
Caller: “I can understand how you might want to begin your spiritual life
together. But, you know, Someone \s waiting for you with out
stretched arms. He has a gift for you and wants you to rise up and
claim that gift. His name is Jesus Christ and the gift is eternal life.
You can have that now. Let me tell you how.”
Objection #31: “I can’t get my spouse to come so I don’t go either.”
Caller: “I can see that you and your spouse have a lot of regard for each other. That’s great to see. God, you see, has a great deal of for regard all of us. That’swhy He sent His Son Jesus Christ. It was His way of loving us and offering us His forgiveness and help. That’s what He is offering you and your spouse. Let me tellyou about that.”
GROUP 4: THE ORGANIZED CHURCH
This group of objections really deals with externals. The Church here is not viewed as a spiritual fellowship but as an organization that ought to be run to suit the individual you are dealing with. It is a blind alley to attempt to deal with any of these issues without faith in Christ. The real objection here is that the Church IS NOT RUN TO SATISFY THE SELFISH NEEDS OF THE PERSON YOU ARE TALKING TO AND HIS PRIDE HAS BEEN HURT SOMEWHERE ALONG THE LINE. Objection #40 (church bores me)may be the most honest response among all the objections. He is usually telling you the truth.
Objection #11: “The Church is becoming too involved in politics, social gospel, etc.”
Caller: “Yes, there are some churches that have gotten off the beaten path pretty far. But, you know, Jesus Christ came into a world where the issues of politics and social problems were pretty hot. In fact, His way of life ran counter to those in power and they finally crucified Him. The real issue that God wants His church to be concerned about is human sin and the hatred that produced all the political and social problems. God did something about that. He sent His Son Jesus Christ to help us, you and me, get our own attitudes toward Him straightened out. He loves us and wants us back. Let me tell you about that.”
Objection #12: “The Church has never done anything for me.”
Caller: “| can understand how you might feel that way. So often the Church can seem like a cold, unfeeling organization. But, .you know, God has done something for you through His Son, Jesus Christ—a very great thing. He has redeemed you from the power of sin and an eternal death. The Church is here simply to keep telling people thatGood News. God is offering you His forgiveness and help right now. Let me tell you how.”
Objection #13: “The Church is behind the times.”
Caller: “I can understand how you might feel that way. Everything today moves pretty fast. But, you know, some things never change, things like sin and the need forforgiveness. How about death? Everybody still suffers that. The real problems of man don’t change; the only thing that changes is the way man shows his sin and hate and fear. That’s why God did something about that, once and for all. He sent His Son Jesus Christ because man was behind the times and out of tune with the Creator’s plan forliving. Few people have been able to catch up with Jesus Christ. He had a vision for a better world that nobody has been able to match—love. God is offering you a chance to enter that world and get a glimpse of what it’s all about. Let me tell you how.”
Objection #7: “There are too many hypocrites in the Church.”
Caller: “I’m sorry to say you are right. There are some. Unfortunately, not everyone in the Church lives up to all that is taught and believed. But that is the heart of what God has to say to us. We all sin and fall short of what He demands. In His love He sent His Son Jesus Christ to help us with all our failings and hypocrisies. He loves us just as we are. He loves you. Let me tell you about His promises to you.”
Comment: This is one of those objections that needs qualification. The Church is not full of hypocrites; there are some. Be sure you qualify that on the way past.
Objection #20: “I don’t like the minister.”
Caller: “I can understand how you might feel that way. Ministers have a difficult job. They have to talk to people about sin, their sin, and about God’s Law and wrath. Nobody wants to hear that. The Bible itself is full of people who hated the prophets and apostles of God because they exposed their sin. But, you know, God doesn’t ask us to like the minister. Our personality and his may just not match up. What God does ask us to do is to love the minister for the sake of the difficult job he does for us all. His real job, you see, is to tell people about the remedy for sin, Jesus Christ, and how much God loves us all. Let me tell you about Christ.”
Objection #24: “I have a grudge.”
Caller: “I am sorry to hear that. I know how difficult it can be when something gets stuck in our hearts and we can’t get it out. We have all had that problem. I always think about how fortunate we are that God doesn’t hold any grudges. If anybody ever had a reason to hold a grudge it was He. We disobeyed Him, killed His messengers, and finally crucified His Son. But that is what makes God different from men. He knows how to love and forgive. The best news is that He is able to give us His own nature and helps us to love and forgive through His Son Jesus Christ. Let me tell you about Him.”
Objection #19: ” I don’t have to go to church to be a Christian.”
“You are absolutely right. Nowhere does the Bible command us to ‘go to church.’ What God does talk about is worship. The word ‘worship’ comes from the Old English word ‘worthship’ which means the value or worth we place on something. Christians gather to worship because they want to tell each other and the whole world the value and worth they place on God. He is first in their lives and they want everybody to know it. That’s true because God places a great deal of value and worth on us. St. Paul once said, ‘You are bought with a price.1 The price was the lifeblood of the Son of God, Jesus Christ. That’s how much value God places on us. Let me tell you why.”
Objection #25 “The kids get religion five days a week at the school.”
“Yes, and that is a great blessing. But, you know, it is difficult to learn to fly a plane in the classroom. The training in religion your children receive is useless if they neverfly, if they never put any of what they learn to work in worship. That’s why your children are learning to know Christ personally. Knowing Him is more than a religion. It’swalking with Him every minute of every day. That’s why Jesus came—so that we could know God and His love for us. That’s what He’s offering you. Let me tell you how.”
Objection #27: “All the Church wants is my money.”
Caller: “I can understand how you might think that. It does seem that the only contact some churches have with their members is when it is pledge time. But, you know, your money isn’t what God wants. That belongs to Him anyway. God wants your heart. That’s why He sent His Son, Jesus Christ, to open your heart and mine to Him again. He loves us and wants us to respond to His love. Money is only a very small part of that response. What He really wants to know is if you love Him and are willing to show that. Let me tell you how that happens.”
Objection #40: “Church bores me.”
Caller: “Thank you for your honesty. It bores me, too, sometimes. That’s a major problem with the whole human race. God always bores us when we don’t understand what He is trying to say to us. That’s why He did the most exciting thing anybody ever heard about. He sent us His own Son, Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ by His death and resurrection opened up a new life that never ends, an eternal life that can begin right now. God loves us and is offering that to us. It’s the most exciting lifethere is. Let me tell you how we can share that.”
GROUP 5: INTELLECTUAL DIFFICULTIES
The person who objects on intellectual grounds usually is suffering from an overestimation of his own importance. He may be genuinely confused by the conflicting claims of many denominations. THE REAL OBJECTION HERE IS THE FEAR THAT RELIGION AND FAITH ARE NOT INTELLECTUALLY ACCEPTABLE OPTIONS. THIS PERSON FEARS THAT HE WILL BE THOUGHT TO BE ‘UNINTELLIGENT” IF HE ACCEPTS RELIGION. He does not understand that his standards of what is ‘‘intelligent’’ are warped.
Objection 16: ‘‘I don’t believe in the Bible.’’ or ‘‘There are so many interpretations of the Bible that I can’t be sure what you are telling me is true.’’
Caller: ‘I can understand your difficulty, and I would like to ask you a question. Would you agree with me that the Bible has influenced the lives of more people than any book ever written? (If the person knows anything. the answer is “yes”.) Would you tell me what you think the main theme of the Bible is? (If the person is not a Christian, you will get the wrong answer every time, something other than God’s plan of salvation by grace through faith). I was afraid that might be the case. You have dismissed the Book that has influenced the lives of more people than any ever written and you are not sure what the main theme is. Let me share it with you. God wants us to be sure of one thing: His love for us and our salvation through the death and resurrection of His Son. Jesus Christ. Intelligent people have recognized that sacrifice of God as real love. That’s the way love is. The Bible can interpret itself when it comes to that central theme. Anybody can read and understand that for himself. Let me tell you more about it.”
Objection 29: ‘‘That’s only your interpretation.’’
Caller: ‘‘I can understand how you might think that. There are many religious ‘nuts’ loose in the world, genuine fanatics. Sensible Christians have found that God’s Word is capable of making its own meaning plain, particularly when it comes to the central message of salvation. God wanted to interpret his feelings about us, His lost and straying creatures. He wanted to let us know how He felt about us. the longing love He had to bring us back to Himself. That’s why He sent us His Son, Jesus Christ, instead of a letter. By His death and resurrection, Christ made Gods love and mercy available to us all. It’s not hard to interpret that kind of sacrifice, It is love at work. Let me tell you what God is trying to say about you.”
GROUP 6: THE ENVIRONMENT
This group of objections all share a common factor — in some way the environment of worship makes their participation impossible. The person who uses these objections may, on occasion, have a genuine problem. Objection 4f22 about being in crowds may be a genuine psycho-neurotic problem that needs therapy. For the most part, however, the person using these excuses is extremely selfish. THE REAL OBJECTION HERE IS THE FEAR OF SHARING ONESELF WITH OTHERS. THESE PEOPLE ARE USUALLY LONELY BECAUSE LONELINESS IS THE FEAR OF LOVE. Remember, however, not to make uncharitable judgments. Some of these objections may be valid.
Objection 21: I don’t like to get up in front for Communion.
Caller: ‘I can understand that. Many of us are self-conscious about being up in front. I’ve always thought about something else, however. Did you ever think about how God. through His Son Jesus Christ, has put us ‘up in front’’? He has singled us out and made us very special people through His Son. Holy Communion is His offer to share all the benefits of Christ’s death and resurrection with us and assure us of His love. Everybody partaking of Holy Communion is being assured that they are precious in God’s eyes. Let me tell you about that.’’
Comment: ‘You may have to deal with a genuine shyness here or offer to serve this person the Sacrament in the pew. if possible, get off the subject of their fears and self-consciousness and on to the Gospel and what God is offering them.
Objection 22: I can’t stand to be in a crowd.’
Comment: This objection may be real. Of the three persons the author has dealt with here, one was genuine, the other two insincere. They could stand crowded supermarkets. etc. but not crowded churches. You need to clarity this situation before proceeding further.
Caller: Oh? I’m sorry to hear that. Do you get out at all? (Answer). How do you get your groceries and other necessities? Could we be of any help?
Comment: Should you suspect from the answers that you are dealing with a person who is genuinely having difficulty in crowds, let the Pastor deal with this problem professionally. Should you conclude that the problem is manufactured, you might want to proceed along the following lines:
Caller: ‘I guess we need to keep reminding ourselves that we are something very special with God and not just one of the crowd. He speaks to us personally through His Word. Jesus Christ. He died for us one by one and assures us that He calls us by name. He promises that He knows us well enough to be able to number the hairs on our head. That’s what I came to talk to you about — God’s love for each of us no matter what our problems. Let me tell you about that love.’
Objection 30: “I have bad health and am unable to come to church.”
Caller: “I’m sorry to hear that. But, you know, God came to us in the person of His Son, Jesus Christ. That’s what He offers to do for us every day of our lives through His Word. Let me tell you about His love for you and me and His promise to be here with us right now.”
Comment: This objection may also be genuine. If so, here is a person who needs the supporting love and helpfulness of God’s people. If it is an excuse, present the Gospel and offer the 16-Week type course at home. If they come to faith, the problem will resolve itself.
Objection #32: “I have nothing to wear.”
Caller: “I can understand how you feel. It does seem that people put on their very best clothes to come to church. But, you know, God made provision for usall to have something to wear. The Bible calls it the righteousness of Christ. That’s what God sees when people come to worship. With an old coat or house dress you might be the best-dressed person there; people look at the outward appearance, but God looks at our hearts. Let me tell you a little bit about how God sees you through the eyes of His love in Christ.”
Objection #33: “I don’t like Communion from the common cup.”
Caller: “I have heard people say that before. From a purely physical point of view, the cup is non-absorbing metal and the wine has strong enough alcohol content that germs are not a problem. But I think we need to remind ourselves of something else. In Holy Communion Christ offers to unite Himself to us and us to Him. Our problem is worse – our problem is sin and it’s killing us. Our Lord JesusChrist unites us to Himself and to each other because joined to Him we have what He has—purity, holiness, righteousness, cleansing.In Holy Communion He takes what we have — sin, death, disease. In Holy Communion God seals His love to us. Let me tell you about the meaning of that love.”
Objection #37: “I don’t have any transportation.”
Caller: “I’m sorry to hear that. It must be frustrating to want to move around and have no way to get there. I guess, in a sense, that’s why I’m here. When it comes to God, we don’t have any way to get to Him. No transportation is the problem there, too. That’s why He sent His Son into the world — to open the way for us to get back to Him. Let me tell you how Jesus Christ did that for us and what God is promising you.”
Comment: Don’t be too quick to offer to pick this person up. If they had wanted to find a way, they would have. Talk the Gospel to them first or you will find that there is no “power” for them to want transportation even if you offer it. If you present the Gospel and they respond, you may find them accepting your offer of transportation later.
GROUP 7: THE PACE OF LIFE ITSELF
This group of objections is very common in the hustle and bustle of life in this country. Many of the objections in this group seem insurmountable ONLY BECAUSE WE THINK OUR TASK IS TO GET THEM TO COME TO CHURCH, WHICH, OF COURSE, IS ON SUNDAY. REMEMBER THAT “GETTING THEM TO COME TO CHURCH”IS NOT WHAT YOU ARE THERE FOR. The 16-Week course or its equivalent doesn’t meet on Sunday! Inviting them back to church will nol solve the spiritual problem here anyway. The real objection here IS THAT THIS PERSON IS IN LOVE WITH THE WORLD AND USUALLY HAS WORN HIMSELF OUT CHASING IT. HE WANTS TO ESCAPE THE CONSEQUENCES OF THE FEVERISH PACE THE WORLD KEEPS, HOWEVER. SLEEP AND TRIPS ARE ESCAPE MECHANISMS FOR THIS TYPE OF PERSON.
Objection #9: “I’m too busy.”
Caller: “| understand what you are telling me. Life can get to be pretty much of a hassle, a real rat race sometimes. To live well takes a real sense of timing. God had that kind of sense of timing when He sent us His Son, Jesus Christ. He came into a world that was just as busy then as now. But here was a difference. Jesus was busy with the Father’s business —winning for us forgiveness of sins and eternal life. He loves us and wants us to acknowledge that love. We need to take time forthat. Let me tell you about Him.
Objection #10: “I work on Sunday.”
Caller: “I’m sorry to hear you have to work Sundays. But that really isn’t why I came—to get you to go to church. I came to share with you something about One who isworking for us seven days a week. He never tires of helping and serving us. I’m talking about Jesus Christ, our Savior. God loved us and sent His Son to do the work wecouldn’t
do, the work of our salvation from sin and death. Let me tell you about Him.”
Objection #23: “It’s too hard to get up on Sunday morning.”
Caller: “I can understand how you feel. I’m not always too keen on getting up on Sunday either. Life is made up of ups and downs. That’s why I get up for worship on Sunday. Worship is one of those high spots in the week. In fact, without praising and worshiping my Savior, Jesus Christ, on Sunday, the week doesn’t have any ‘ups’ or high spots to speak of. It’s a great thing to know that God loves us and invites us to share His love and forgiveness every day of our lives and not just on Sunday. Let me share a little of what that means to me.”
Objection #26: “We are usually gone on weekends.”
Caller: “I can understand that you like to take the time to be together as a family. But I really didn’t come to talk to you about weekends or Sundays. I know that there are a lot of people who believe they can worship God out in the woods or in nature and don’t need church anyway. They overlook one important fact, however. God comes to us through His Son Jesus. May I tell you more about him.
Summary — the 4 steps to answering an objection, as stated by Abdon and illustrated above:
STEP 1: DETERMINE WHAT THE REAL OBJECTION IS.
STEP 2: ACCEPT THE OBJECTION.
STEP 3: REASSERT THE SUBJECT.
Whether it is apparent at first or not, the objection has introduced a new subject and we are no longer discussing the individual and his relationship to God. Examples: “The Church is lull ofhypocrites.” Now we are no longer discussing the individual but how many hypocrites there are in the church—quite a different subject! “I don’t have to go to church to be a Christian.” Now we are discussing “going to church” instead of the individual’s relationship to God. HANDLE OBJECTIONS WITH TWO OR THREE SHORT SENTENCES AND GET BACK ON THESUBJECT. REMEMBER: YOU DO NOT OWE THIS PERSON AN AIR-TIGHT, RATIONAL “PROOF” THAT GOD IS RIGHT AND HE IS WRONG. THE BEST METHOD FOR REASSERTING THE SUBJECT IS TO PICK THE KEY WORD OUT OF HIS OBJECTION AND GO BACK INTO THE REAL SUBJECT WHERE HE CAME OUT. We will demonstrate this technique in the paragraphs below.
STEP 4: REAFFIRM THE GOSPEL.
This is what we came for — to present the good news of God’s love and mercy in Christ to someone who, though they may have been church members, either didn’t hear it or refused to hear it. THE WHOLE PURPOSE OF OUR VISIT IS TO BEAR WITNESS TO THE TIRELESS LOVE OF GOD FOR PEOPLE AND TO INVITE THE PERSON BACK HOME TO THE FATHER’S HOUSE. THE WORD OF THE GOSPEL IS THE ONLY POWER IN THE WORLD THAT CAN EFFECT THE CHANGE OF HEART AND LIFE WE ARE SEEKING THROUGH THIS VISIT.
HANDLING OBJECTIONS AND MANAGING THE INTERVIEW
The list of 40 objections looks rather foreboding, yet a little training and some experience indicates that there are really six or seven major objections behind all 40 on the list. You will recall that Step 1 in the process of handling objections was to determine what the real objection is. Let’s see if we can break the list of 40 major objections down into groups that really stem from the same objection. These are the major objections:
SUBSTITUTES FOR CHRIST: Objections #3, #5, #14, #18
SELF-RIGHTEOUSNESS: Objections #1, #2, #8, #15, #17, #28, #34, #36, #38, #39
BLAMING OTHER PEOPLE: Objections #4, #6, #7, #20, #24, #31
THE ORGANIZED CHURCH: Objections #11, #12, #13, #19, #25, #27, #40
“INTELLECTUAL” DIFFICULTIES: Objections #16, #29
THE ENVIRONMENT: Objections #21, #22, #30, #32, #33, #37
LIFE ITSELF: Objections #9, #10, #23, #26, #35