Personal Soul Winning

By Evangelist John R. Rice, Th.D.

VI. It Is Important to Follow Up the New Convert, Leading to Public Profession of Faith, Baptism, and Church Membership

A few weeks ago my daughter was delivered at the hospital of a lovely baby boy, and the eight-pound, two-ounce boy was named for his proud grandfather, John Robert Rice, II. (His father is also a Rice.) But his parents did not leave the baby at the hospital! They brought him home and began elaborate care of the little fellow -- feeding, bathing, changing diapers. So when you have a soul born, do not leave the lamb for the wolves; do not leave the new convert without assurance of salvation and without leading him in the road for success and happiness in the Christian life. In the Great Commission the Lord Jesus said that when souls are saved, then we are to baptize them, "teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you."

1. First, arrange if possible for a public profession of faith.

I would explain simply that one who is on the Lord's side ought to say so. He has been all this time before without Christ and on Satan's side, and now he should make known publicly his grand decision and the transaction by which he is made now a child of God. I would teach the new convert Matthew 10:32: "Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven." There is special joy in claiming Christ openly. And I would explain that that simply means that his decision ought to be made known in some simple way. The most logical way is for you to arrange to pick him up in your car or to meet him at some church service where he will be given an opportunity to come forward and let it be known that he is taking Christ as Saviour. You make the plans to take him to some such good Bible-preaching church. Sit by him in the services. Walk forward with him and tell the preacher, "My friend here has trusted Christ and wants you to know it and wants you to tell the people that he has been saved."

2. The new convert should be taught to be baptized.

Jesus made much of this. It is in the Great Commission as expressed in Matthew 28:19 and 20, and in Mark 16:16. It was the universal practice of New Testament Christians that as soon as one was saved, he was taught to be baptized, often "the same hour of the night," as with the Philippian jailer and his family.

And of course the young convert should be taught to attend some Bible-believing church where he will learn the Word of God and will find usefulness and fellowship. And he should be taught to start out to read his Bible through, reading daily, and to have a secret time of prayer every day and to get into soul-winning activities.

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