"For Christ's love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died. And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again. So from now on we regard no one from a wordly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation. We are therefore Christ's ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ's behalf: be reconciled to God. God made him who had no sin to be sin fo rus, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God."
--2 Corinthians 5:14-21
I'm not going to break this passage apart too much, but I think there are some important things we can get out of it about why we share the good news of Christ. First, exactly like it says: 'For Christ's love compels us.' We share because we are compeled to, because Christ's love for us makes it necessary that we do so. Later, it says 'we implore you.' We beg you, we beseech you.
Compel, implore. This is pretty urgent language. I think this is what was trying to be communicated Friday night, and I agree with that completely. At some point--and probably at many points--we will hear messages about 'what if you wake up tomorrow and get in a car accident?' or 'what if your friend dies suddenly?' and either you've never accepted Christ or your friend hasn't.
BUT--and I think this part is important and needs to be very clear--salvation is the Lord's and the Lord's only. The eternal souls of the people we care about and of anyone are not in our hands. We are called to share the gospel, yes. 'On Christ's behalf.' We are commanded to go and make disciples. If we love our neighbor, we will also share Christ with him, and we do so no because God needs us to, not because if we don't we're condemning people to hell, but because we have a chance to be a part of glorifying God. If we don't, God will still be glorified, his plans will still be made complete and perfect, we just might have forfeited our part there. Like in Luke 19, if no one praises the Lord, then even 'the stones will cry out.'
I don't say this to say that we don't have to evangelize. We do. The Bible is very clear about this. Matthew 28:19-20, 2 Timothy 4:1-5, all through Acts and a bunch of other places. However, if anyone tells you that if you don't do this and this, then so-and-so will reject Christ and it is your fault, then I would respond to him: the Bible does not say that. Yes. We are called to share the gospel. We are compeled to do so. But not out of guilt and fear, and it is no more in our power to condemn than to save. And our God is so much bigger than that. He can't save this person if we don't do this and this? True that they can still reject him, but the only person who can reject God is that person. And in fact, I'd say that God's more about using how imperfectly we share the gospel in our words and how we live. You see? It's not in our power. 2 Cor. 12:9: "But he said to me, 'My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.' Therefore I will boast all the moer gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me."
So. Please don't misunderstand me. I thought Friday was wonderful. And I thought the intentions were to glorify the Lord, to call people to share the good news, and these are wonderful things. However, they are because of Christ's love, not out of fear or guilt: "For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control." 2 Timothy 1:7 And the great thing about Friday? The message could have been either of those things, it could have been the best message ever or a train wreck and still God would use it! He is, he already is!
And to that I would say: praise God. Praise God that he is working good things out of everything we give him and that he will be glorified. And that's what we want to do. We just want to glorify God.