In today’s world people do not always want to hear what God has to say on any given topic. It takes courage to speak God’s word to a society that has it’s own ideas, worldview and values, yet this is what God’s people have been called to do for thousands of years, and it is what we, as disciples of Christ, are still called to do today. Many people tell me that they struggle to share their faith because either they are not good with words or they don’t know what to say. We are certainly not the first generation of believers who have struggled in this way; the Bible gives us stories of people like Moses, Jonah and even Paul to remind us that God Himself will equip us and strengthen us when we speak God’s word, but first we must follow His direction.
But can’t we just lead good lives? Living a “good life” is not what the Bible calls us to do, we are called to live a godly life - and this is a powerful witness in a world far from God; mainly because one common response to the Christian message is that Christians as hypocritical because we say one thing but do another. So living a Godly life is one part of sharing our faith with a sceptical world - we may not be able to answer all of their questions, but they can’t deny the reality of what Christ has done in our life. But At the same time, we must do more than simply live Godly lives. People need to hear the Gospel—to hear that God loves them, that Christ died for them and that they can have eternal life. Romans 10:13-14 says, “‘Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.’ How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them?”
Here are 5 simple steps to sharing the Gospel:
1. Tell them about God’s Plan - peace & life. (John 3:16)
2. Share out problem - separation from God (Romans 2:23 & Romans 6:23)
3. Talk about the remedy - the cross (1 Peter 2:24)
4. Explain the response - receive Christ (John 1:12)
5. Give assurance - Whoever calls upon the name of the Lord will be saved (Romans 10:13)
Remember You can’t open someone’s heart to the truth of the Gospel—but God can, by His Spirit. We see time and again in the Bible how God does not call the equipped; He equips the called—and as Christians, we are all called to share what Christ has done. Some of Christ’s last words on earth were, “Go and make disciples of all nations” (Matthew 28:19). Sharing our faith isn’t just a suggestion, it’s a command. And God is with us when we obey Him.
So let’s all Go and make disciples!
Grace & peace
Last fortnight we spoke of the importance of belonging and being active in our church; but how do we, as the people of God help each other, and especially help new comers to belong?
There are two ways in which we (Christians) operate within the church and also welcome newcomers; we either become table people or tower people.
Towers are tall, dominant, imposing, impressive and often quite exclusive. Often when you reach a tower in the city you can’t get in unless you have a code, or unless you already know someone inside. If you do get in towers are often difficult to navigate and there are some floors which are totally off limits without a key or a membership card. From a tower we look down on the world, we look down passers by, and we look down on those who want to access our tower. Towers are made out of uniform materials, they are hard, clean, man made, and they are almost religious in their conformity (and they are very often boring). When God’s people built a tower in Genesis 11 God had to come down to see what His people were doing; and He said “this will never do … My people are not tower people”.
On the other hand tables are flat, low and accessible. Table are usually made out of more natural materials, they are soft and often beautiful. Tables are inviting, they are places of welcome, and feasting, and conversation and learning. The Bible tells us that God has set a great banquet table for His people (imagery of the Kingdom of God), In Luke 14, when God is told that there is still room at the table, He sends ambassadors to bring more people in; in fact he tells His ambassadors to “compel’ people to come, to offer repeatedly, to encourage, to remind, even to beg! God is not satisfied until His table is full. In Luke 14 God’s banquet table is not uniform, but it certainly is interesting! God is a table person … and He calls us to be table people! To go out and compel all people to come to fill His table and His house, and therefore to fill our table with the poor, the cripple, the lame, foreigners, widows, children - those who are the same as us, and those who are different. We help each other, we help new people, we even help ourselves to belong when we become table people.
So a question to ponder this week: Are you a tower person or a table person? Is your church a tower or a table? Are you compelling all people to come and belong?
Grace & peace
Jen is an energetic and passionate disciple of Christ who loves to share Jesus with anyone who will listen!