The elderly of our world provide another vital target population. For the first time in our history, there are as many people over age 65 as there are under 18. Often the elderly are lonely, ill, poor or dying. They need the help and fellowship of the church. To be ready for living and for dying, they need Christ. In every local church we have energetic and devoted members who are approaching retirement age. Moreover, these unique members can reach those of their own age with the gospel.
Even the elderly, in many cases, have dabbled in idolatry or the occult or immoral sex. Consequently, spiritual ground is not easily gained in their lives. Their minds have been bound by the powers of darkness and much intercessory prayer is needed to reach both backslidden Christians and nonbelievers. However, it is not impossible, if Christians are willing to pay the price to pray.
We must minister to various races, nationalities and cultures around the world and to those pockets of people who come to the United States. Some 25 Million Hispanics live in the United States, and their number is growing. Migration from the Middle East has reached such proportions that Muslims outnumber both Jews and Presbyterians.
We can reach them when we deliberately seek to understand them. The apostle Paul said, “And unto the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might gain the Jews; to them that are under the law, as under the law, that I might gain them that are under the law; 21 To them that are without law, as without law, (being not without law to God, but under the law to Christ) that I might gain them that are without law,” (1 Cor. 9:20-21).
Born Again Believers
The Christian church is supposed to be a congregation made up of “born-again believers.” These are believers who trust in Jesus Christ as their Savior. These believers also meet together to fellowship and learn to carry out the Great Commission of the evangelism of the Word of God. The church is not a building where Christians meet but the building is the church time in which the believers meet. However, the Bible uses the metaphor of a building to picture the church which is mystically made up of believers with Jesus Christ as the Cornerstone.
Paul, the apostle gives us the analogy in (I Cor. 3:11),“For no other ‘foundation’ can no man lay than is laid, which is Jesus Christ.” Then Jesus becomes the head of the church and connected to His people. The Apostle Peter addresses the church as consisting of people to a living mystical organism in (I Pet. 2:5), “Ye also as ‘lively stones,’ are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ.” Paul continues this comparison of the church to a living spiritual body in (Eph. 2:21), “In whom all the building fitly ‘framed’ together groweth unto a holy temple.”