What type of Christian witness am I?
Have you ever asked yourself “What type of Christian witness am I”? By that I mean, how exactly do you go about getting the message of the Gospel across to people? We are all different and so naturally the way we share the good news about Jesus will vary too.
Some people are very direct while others have the opposite approach. Here are some different witnessing personality types for you to consider.
Does the way in which you witness fit with any of these descriptions?
Key Point: There will be a method of witnessing that you feel most comfortable using
You may be like me and use many, or even all, of the suggestions listed below. However, there is likely to be one method which you use more than any of the others because it feels the most comfortable way to you and therefore you are more confident with it, too.
1) Confrontational: Do you confront people's fears or objections in a very direct manner when you are witnessing? Ever been told that you are quite blunt when you share the Gospel? If so, there is a good possibility that you may be like Peter, with a very straight forward and confrontational style.
Jesus was like this at times, when He asked direct questions and expected direct responses from His listeners, such as the occasion when He asked the disciples a vitally important question:
"But what about you?" He asked. "Who do you say I am?" Matthew 8: 29
2) Invitational: Both the Samaritan woman and Levi are great examples of this when they invited people to meet Christ. Some Christians take this approach, inviting friends and others to church services or church events and activities, hoping that they will be able to see God in action. It is a ‘low pressure’ way of bringing someone along to a meeting. Some Christians are very successful in inviting others always managing to bring someone along with them to church for almost any event. My wife Desiree is outstanding at this method, as people respond readily to her outgoing and friendly manner when she invites them.
"Then Levi held a great banquet for Jesus at his house, and a large crowd of tax collectors and others were eating with them." Luke 5: 29
"Come, see a man who told me everything I ever did. Could this be the Christ?" John 4: 29
3) Intellectual: Many people have an intellectual viewpoint often developed through their education or working environment. Paul the apostle favoured this approach to witnessing. In fact, he often used logic to get his message across. An excellent demonstration of this is found in the book of Acts where he gave logical reasons to believe in the "Invisible God”.
"For He has set a day when He will judge the world with justice by the man He has appointed. He has given proof of this to all men by raising him from the dead."Acts 17:31
4) Testimonial: Sharing your personal testimony of salvation through Jesus Christ is extremely powerful. Explaining the way God helped you through some tough times or how you came to realise that Jesus was a real person often gets people to listen with interest, because people love to hear stories, especially ones that are true. If you share in this way, then you are similar to the blind man in John 9 when he told the Pharisees he believed because Jesus healed him. His incredible testimony helped others see that Jesus really was the Way.
"The man answered, "Now that is remarkable! You don't know where He comes from, yet He opened my eyes. We know that God does not listen to sinners. He listens to the godly man who does His will. Nobody has ever heard of opening the eyes of a man born blind. If this man were not from God, He could do nothing." John 9:30-33
5) Bridge Builder: Some Christians much prefer to witness individually. Sometimes there can be a period of time before they are ready to share their faith. They like to get to know the people that they share their faith with, and they tailor their conversation to each person. Jesus often did this with small groups as well as individually. He showed this with the Canaanite woman, when initially He appeared uninterested in her request for help. Then He responded to her with these words:
"Then Jesus answered, 'Woman, you have great faith! Your request is granted.' And her daughter was healed from that very hour" Matthew 15:2
6) Service: Some Christians prefer to be examples of Christ through their lives, allowing the light of Jesus to shine for all to see: in other words, living out an evangelistic lifestyle. Dorcas was a very good example of this through helping the poor and leading by example. Many missionaries witness through service rather than through words alone. Witnessing in this way speaks volumes as there is a practical demonstration of the love of God behind the actions.
"In Joppa there was a disciple named Tabitha (which, when translated, is Dorcas), who was always doing good and helping the poor." Acts 9:36
Which style matched your personality?