We are living in the end times. Today more than ever before the Church needs to make a concerted effort to reach out to those who do not believe with the saving Gospel of Jesus Christ.
But how do we know?
How do we know who has been marked with the sign of the cross and is safely in the Kingdom of God, and who does not have saving faith? Scripture clearly tells us that only God knows who has saving faith and who does not. How does the Church know which houses in its neighborhood are homes to those who believe and which houses are homes to those who do not believe?
Ultimately the Church and her members must adopt the philosophy that everyone is a heathen, until they are proven faithful.
That means that the Church needs to knock on every door and invite the residents to worship; if the response is that they are members of another church and they are happily worshiping there, well and good. Simply offer a word of encouragement that they continue to do so and go to the next house.
But, if the answer is anything short of faithful attendance in a Christian house of worship, that is a place where the full resources and efforts of the Church need to be unleashed.
Answers indicating that a person does not attend but regularly reads the Bible are not acceptable. This is not about who can quote chapter and verse of the Bible; this is about who is in worship hearing the Word of God preached and their sins forgiven; who is in worship being reminded of their Baptism and being fed with the body and blood of Jesus in the Lord’s Supper.
The model for this is the Jehovah’s Witnesses. They go door to door and conduct conversations with whoever they meet, no matter the answer. Now while they are promoting a false religion that will not lead to eternal life; their model is one that can be copied.
Nothing should be assumed, a house should not be avoided just because someone thinks the residents go to this church or that. They are too considered heathens, in desperate need of salvation until proven otherwise.
For in the end times, there is no room for error. If the Church is convinced that people will go to hell for their unbelief, then the Church needs to make every effort to reach out to those in need of the Gospel.