Skip to main content

Secret To An Open Door - A Review

David A. Morel's short book, Secret To An Open Door: Igniting a Passion for the Lost, was recommended to me by a dear friend. I'm glad it was.


This book focus is different than virtually every other book on evangelism that I've ever read.

Greatest Strength

Being different isn't always better. In some cases, books are better simply because they are different. I found the difference in approach that was presented by Morel to be a refreshing and edifying angle.

The biblical information that Morel starts with isn't what you might expect. He doesn't start at 1 Corinthians 15 or John 3:16. Instead, the biblical content emphasized is regarding the gospel as a "mystery." Morel spends a good amount of effort to trace the importance of this theme through the pages of Scripture and the life of the Apostle Paul in particular.

Understanding the spiritual aspect of the gospel is lost on many. Morel tries to make this clear. This spiritual understanding requires us to use spiritual means to advance the gospel. Such talk may make some people nervous. But denying the reality of spiritual warfare would be a mistake. Morel focuses his attention and writing on the importance of understanding the unseen forces at work when preaching the gospel. He seeks to help Christians learn the secret to fruitful evangelism based on the ministry and, particularly, prayers of the Apostle Paul.

Relying on the power of Prayer
Learning to pray like Paul for success and open doors in evangelism is extremely important. Relying on God instead of methods of the flesh is crucial. After reading this book, I immediately began praying more like Paul. I found that God was pleased to open a door for me to share the gospel unexpectedly right away. If every Christian prayed this way, I am confident that much more genuine and fruitful evangelism would be the result.

Greatest Weakness

I mean everything I said above. Even still, I have a lot of theological differences with the material in Secret to an Open Door. Reading the section on the process of personal witnessing was very difficult. Aside from the discussion on the spiritual nature of evangelism and the importance of prayer in opening the door for effective witness, I can't say I found much of value for me personally.

Conclusion

For people I know who are already practicing evangelism in their daily lives, I would have no problem recommending this book. I would probably qualify my recommendation by saying they could read the first four chapters (only 46 pages) and ignore the last four.

Even with half of the book removed, I am not exaggerating when I say the part that remains is well-worth careful consideration. It is extremely easy for Christians, especially those who are comfortable in their personal witness, to rely on their experience and methods instead of the power of God. The Apostle Paul clearly understood the importance and power of prayer in effective gospel ministry. Morel's book brought clarity to this important subject more than any other book I've ever read. For that, I will always be thankful.

Comments

Popular Posts

Prayer vs. Petition

Q: What's the difference between prayer and petition? Phil 4:6 for example.

A: An excellent word study question! When attempting to study words from the text it is necessary to analyze the word being studied in the original language (in this case Greek) as attempting to look up the words in English will often produce erroneous results.

For example, in English the word petition has within its range of meanings things that are certainly not within the scope of meanings for the Greek word (i.e. “a sheet that is signed to demonstrate agreement with some principle or desire for some social action to be taken” is part of the range of “petition” but not of the Greek deesis from which “petition” is translated).

The word most commonly translated as “prayer” in our English Bibles is proseuche, which appears 36 times in the New Testament (NT) in one form or another (for the purposes of this study, we are only examining the usage of these words as nouns – the verbal forms will not be included…

What is Salvation, Part 4

Q: What is salvation and can you lose it?

There's the saying "once saved always saved". Using the scripture that no one is able to snatch them out of the Fathers hand. (John 10:29) but it says in verse 27 My sheep hear my voice, I know them and they follow me. So the no snatching is referring to those who hear and follow, in other words who are obedient to His Word. So, the ones that do not heed the call of the Lord and follow can be snatched?

What about sin hardening the heart? (Hebrew 3:13)

Shipwrecked faith? (1Tim 1:19)

I have heard the saying - "It's not how you start the race but how you finish it."

In Hebrew 3:14 For we have become partakers of Christ if we hold the beginning of our confidence steadfast to the end,

If you aren't a true follower of Christ then how can you have the strength on your own to even run the race. It is because of Christ and who He transforms you to be that you would even want to run the race at all. So…

The Judgment Seat of Christ

Q: If our sins are forgiven, what are we going to stand judgment for?
A:Part of the good news of the gospel of Jesus Christ is that "...there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus" (Romans 8:1). This is great news indeed! How amazing that the Holy and Righteous Judge and Creator of the world has made a way for rebellious and wicked sinners to be reconciled to Him.

Jesus the Christ, the one who became accursed by God so that all who believe in Him could be justly forgiven, and who rose from the dead and who is exalted at the right hand of God, has secured a victory over sin, death and the devil both now and forever. On the foundation of this completed work of Christ, believers can have assurance that they will be able to stand on the Day of Judgment. This is why it is good and right to sing the praises of Him who has overcome!

Because of what Jesus has done, the Bible teaches very clearly that our salvation is not on the basis of deeds, but on the basis of…

The Church Isn't A Business

I used to be a salesman. I sold a lot of different stuff. I worked retail. I did door-to-door. In all my various jobs my function was essentially the same. I was the link between company and customer.

Successful companies know their customer demographics. Many sales meetings revolve around numbers. Persons are treated as statistics. The customer becomes a set of numbers, preferences, and habits. Really successful companies cater their goods and services to a target demographic.

It's all about the consumer experience.
I remember when I began in pastoral ministry. People assured me that my experience as a salesman would be beneficial. They said there was a lot of overlap between pastors and salespeople. That may be true in our experience. But is it true of what we read in Scripture?

When I open my Bible and read about Christ's church I see a beautiful design that is very different from a business. Night and day different.

When Jesus walked the earth He rebuked those who failed t…

Lift Up The Son, Part 1

"As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up; so that whoever believes will in Him have eternal life." (John 3:14-15)
There is a difference between outreach and evangelism. Outreach can take many different forms. It can be service. It can be advertising. Outreach can (and should) contain evangelism. But it doesn't always.

Sometimes Christians fall into the trap of preaching ourselves. Preaching our churches. Preaching our favorite doctrines, moral battles, pressing burdens, or our pet programs.

To be sure, there is a time and a place for all of that.

But Christians must also remember the counsel of Paul, the Apostle to the Gentiles:

For we do not preach ourselves but Christ Jesus as Lord, and ourselves as your bond-servants for Jesus' sake. (2 Corinthians 4:5)
We do not preach ourselves. We preach Christ Jesus as Lord. We present ourselves as servants of others for Jesus' sake. Our service to them can take many forms. …