Wednesday, 8 March 2017

A simple request

It is very likely that at some time in the past you have been at a function or a busy meeting.  While you were in conversation with somebody you said something like, “Oh, I must introduce you to……………” or, “Come and meet……….”.
We do this because we really want the individual we are in conversation with to meet to the person that we value so much.  We have a great desire to want to connect them; we want them to get to know each other because we feel it is so very important.
Andrew brought his brother to Jesus. And when Jesus saw him, he said, “Simon son of John, you will be called Cephas.” John 1:42
Philip found Nathanael and told him, “We have found the one Moses wrote about in the Law, and about whom the prophets also wrote—Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph.” “Nazareth! Can anything good come from there?” Nathanael asked. “Come and see,” said Philip. John 1: 45 – 46
Introducing people is a perfectly natural thing for us to do.  The fact is that we do it very often, and we do it without thinking about it.  The question that we should be asking ourselves is, “Isn’t that how we should be when it comes to letting people know about Jesus?
Witnessing I believe is quite possibly the Christian believers greatest fear.  From conversations and teaching many people on the subject of one to one evangelism, I have discovered that most of this fear is involved with a concern that people will judge us for the wrong reasons and end up possibly even avoiding us.
We have a natural tendency to want to preserve friendships and relationships and worry about damaging them.  It was once said, that we care more about friendship than we actually care about our friends.  It’s very that this is the case when it comes to witnessing to people who are close to us.
In times that we do feel fearful, we need to remember this important scripture. Fear of man will prove to be a snare, but whoever trusts in the LORD is kept safe” Proverbs 29: 25
It is a wonderful reassurance to know that when we are afraid, or are a little worried we can rest assured that when we put our trust in Jesus He will always keep us safe.  Want a promise!
I read recently that witnessing is one of the most neglected commands in all of Scripture.  We know in many cases that bible reading and prayer are also disregarded by many Christians.  Experience tells me that witnessing has to be the least practiced of all.
As a result of meeting with Jesus, Andrew, realised something that was very important.  It was the fact that he mustshare his good news with his brother, Simon. We also read that Phillip did the same with Nathaniel.
Key point: When someone has tasted and seen that the Lord is good, their most natural response is to want to share Jesus with others.
Andrew and Philip both went and found Peter and Nathaniel to tell them about what had happened.  The reality is, that when someone has tasted and seen that the Lord is good, their most natural response is to want to share Jesus with others.
Andrew and Philip were so convinced that Jesus was the one that they didn’t just tell people about it; he took them to meet Jesus in person.  This is a great example for us as we know from research that people are more likely to come to church for the first time if the person who invites them actually meets them and goes with them.
When we are offering an invitation, all we are saying to the person is “Come and see”.  It is not a complicated evangelism strategy.  Just a simple polite invitation to an event or meeting when we ask something like, “Come and see what happens, I am sure you’ll enjoy it”.  It’s not a pressure question; it’s just a friendly request. “Why not come and see”?
I think that the interesting point to note is that immediately after Andrew and Philip found Christ they quickly became concerned that others should find Him as well. When we come to know Jesus as our saviour, the immediate impulse we have is to tell someone about the one who saved us from a lost eternity.
From teaching personal evangelism, I have learned is that sometimes it can often be easier for us to speak to someone else’s brother or sister because we feel less pressure.  Family relationships can often make witnessing difficult, but we must be concerned for those who need salvation in our own families and don’t know Jesus.  We need to pray for opportunities and open doorways to let those that we love know about what Jesus can do for them.
It is often the case with new believers that their changed life speaks volumes.  The difference in the way that they live their life is immediately noticeable.  This creates spiritual curiosity and earns them the right to share the good news or even invite someone to church.
In the case of people who have been Christians for some time.  We should set an example of consistency and live an evangelistic lifestyle with the love of Jesus shineingfor people to see.  If we show love first, opportunities will come.
When Andrew and Philip basically said “Come and see” they were excited, enthusiastic and passionate.
Next time you want to invite somebody to church, why not model the same behaviour and say “Come and see”.

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