There is a joke that I sometimes quote to make a point about how Christians often resist change. It goes like this. Question: How many church members does it take to change a light bulb? Answer: Change?
I am all for change and we need to make use of out of the box thinking in order to come up with new ideas on how to reach people with the most important message in the world. We should make use of all new mediums of communication like the internet and other technology. My concern is that in our modern seeker sensitive, politically correct world many Christians are abandoning the proven traditional methods that still work to replace them with ones that are less about one to one witnessing for Christ.
By that I mean that we should be talking directly to people, asking them questions about their deepest beliefs, discovering how these beliefs effect the way that they live their lives, leading on to presenting the truth of the Gospel of salvation. Sometimes it will be gently and on other occasions confrontationally, but it must always be done in love, out of having a heart for the lost.
There are three important scriptures that come to mind that we should never forget when it comes to evangelism and witnessing.
He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation. Mark 16: 15
Then the master told his servant, 'Go out to the roads and country lanes and make them come in, so that my house will be full’ Luke 14: 23
"If you love me, you will obey what I command” John 14: 15
These scriptures I believe tell us that we must go. Yes, we can still make use of new ideas and methods to share Jesus. But we must be careful that we don't throw the baby out with the bath water in favour of more modern approaches.
Jesus knew what He was saying when he spoke those words. He knew about the radio, TV and internet revolution that was to come. He knew that through technology we would be able to reach millions. It really in incredible when you consider what we can do today. Jesus even said himself:
“I tell you the truth, anyone who has faith in me will do what I have been doing. He will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father” John 14: 12
The point that I am making is that we still need to pray for opportunities to share the Gospel one to one, to speak to people and engage them in conversation, letting the way that we live our lives be a witness for Jesus.
Key Point: Leaflets, notices, internet campaigns are all good, but at some point witnessing will involve conversation and sharing the Gospel if you have a desire to win souls
For me to see the truth I needed someone to actually talk to me about Jesus. They pointed out that there was only one way to heaven which is through the Son. At first when I heard the “Good News” I thought it was rubbish, nonsense and baloney. But over a period of time I was won to Christ through them building a relationship one on one. The people who shared Jesus with me let their lights shine, as well as through being salt and by demonstrating the love of Jesus through kindness and compassion as well showing their belief in Christ in both word and deed. Through all of this, and much more my eyes were eventually opened to the truth that Jesus died for me.
I want to challenge you as a Christian to obey the commands of Jesus by being a ready and active witness for Him. It may be difficult at times, but when you consider what He did for us at Calvary there is no comparison.
If you know that you are not witnessing enough personally for Christ, make a plan to do the following:
- Pray daily for opportunities to witness
- Ask God so send people to you who are ready for the message
- Pray specifically for people you are trying to reach personally
- Get into the word of God
- Set aside time to read scriptures that relate to witnessing
- Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal the truth of His word to your heart
- Prepare your testimony so that it lasts from a couple of minutes and another for 5 or ten minutes.
- Try to keep to this formula, cover 30% before being saved, 40% how you were saved, 30% on what has happened since being saved
- Learn answers to common questions that the unsaved have
- Listen to evangelistic messages
- Learn how to lead someone to Christ
- Spend time with people who are effective witnesses
- Ask questions and find out what they do
- Mirror these people and opportunities will come
If being a witness was easy, everyone would be doing it. The truth is that it will mean operating in faith and believing that the Holy Spirit will back you up.
The Good News is that when you do, He will.