Francis Chan has issued a warning that Satan likes to use methods of distraction – including cell phones – to prevent believers from sharing the Gospel with a fallen world.
Satan knows that when the Church becomes united, understands that Jesus is enough, and gets “all the hatred and all this other craziness out,” the world’s going to believe, Chan, author of Crazy Love and founder of We Are Church, recently argued.
“That’s why Satan’s going to do everything he can to keep this from happening, to keep everyone just staring at their phones,” he said. “Satan wants you isolated. He doesn’t want you in close proximity with your brothers and sisters.”
“He doesn’t want you loving them as much as Jesus loved you, because Satan knows when they do that, the gates of hell aren’t going to stop them, so let me keep them divided. Let me keep them thinking that they can’t be witnesses. Let me keep them thinking they need this life jacket because if they figure out they can swim, look out, man,” he continued.
Chan lamented that today, Christians look for external “life jackets” to keep them afloat instead of resting in the power of the Holy Spirit.
“Satan knows if you actually believed in the power within you, that you’ll have the power to look another human being in the eyes, your friends, your family, and tell them the greatest thing that’s happened to you and of the forgiveness that is found in Jesus Christ,” he said.
“You keep believing, ‘no, I need someone else. I need a life jacket. Give me my John Piper life jacket, give me my Hillsong life jacket, give my my Ravi Zacharias life jacket,'” he said. “We’re kept afloat by all these other things, and you don’t realize you can swim. You can be witnesses.”
He added, “If you discover you cannot swim, it’s better to figure that out now and have someone teach you to say, ‘I don’t want to go back to the life preserver or whatever else has been keeping me afloat. I, from the core of my being, want to cry out to God and experience this power.”
Previously, Chan argued that churches in the West often rely on external factors, like music, popular speakers, and light shows, to share the gospel instead of understanding that Jesus is enough. They are “so stoppable the moment it gets too difficult,” he explained.
“What if you actually go, ‘I want to suffer for Christ?'” Chan asked. “Will you suffer to obey these things? Will you actually sacrifice? Because it’s a lot easier to come somewhere and be fed than to love [others] as much as Christ loved you, as much as the Father loves the Son, and to break bread with [others] thinking, ‘Christ was tortured for me; would I do that for [others]?'”
Chan explained that in countries like China, where religion is strictly monitored, you must do what is best for the Gospel not what is best for yourself.
“Somehow you have millions and millions of believers in China, and it wasn’t about all these paid clergy [where] that was their business. And even in the inner cities of America where most of those pastors are bi-vocational.”
The underground Chinese church, he said, has grown so large despite persecution because Chinese Christians “actually believed they could make disciples and start these gatherings because Jesus was enough.”
“I started to think, ‘This is what made the underground church in China unstoppable. If you have a group of people that actually embrace suffering, how are you ever going to stop them?'” he asked.