This week we are exploring How to Share the Gospel but first lets recap last weeks post! Last week we tackled the question, “What is the Gospel?” We discovered why we need the Gospel in the first place; our wrong doing and rebellion against God, our need for a savior to take the punishment we deserved, and our response to the free gift given to us by Jesus. I encourage you to become familiar with the Gospel before diving into this post! Check out the link above to learn about the Gospel of Jesus Christ!
So you have accepted Christ as your Savior and you understand the Gospel, now what? In Matthew 28:18-20, Jesus gives us a clear and concise next step to take. It reads,” And Jesus came and said to them, ‘All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.'”
In these verses Jesus makes a few clear statements; He has be given all authority, He commands His disciples to make more disciples by going into the nations and baptizing them in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, and finally He instructs them to teach these new disciples all that He commanded.
Jesus had been walking with His disciples for three years, teaching and instructing them. He knew that when He left them they would need instruction to continue to do the work of spreading the Gospel. Just like the disciples that walked with Jesus and every other follower of Jesus since that time, we must obey Jesus’ command and share our faith.
Many Christians accept Christ and receive forgiveness of their wrong doings; they receive a new life through Christ’s death for them but keep that good news to themselves and live their life for their our personal spiritual growth. I know because I have lived that life before.
But if we, as Christians who know the radical life-transforming truth of Jesus Christ don’t share it with the world around us then what are we doing but living selfish lives. We’ve stopped allowing the Gospel to change and redirect us.
But I want to encourage you that you can shift from focusing solely on your personal spiritual growth and accept the call all Christians have been given, to share the Gospel unashamedly and boldly! Here is some scripture to encourage you in this call:
For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? Romans 10:13-14
For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. Romans 1:16
And every day, in the temple and from house to house, they did not cease teaching and preaching that the Christ is Jesus. Acts 5:42
but in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect 1 Peter 3:15-16
Practical Tips for sharing the Gospel
A great way to share the Gospel is to share it with people you have already developed relationships with. How many friends do you have that you haven’t brought your faith up to? My Pastor recently said, I want my friends to know about the faith that is so central to my life. If they don’t know, he asks if he can share it with them, not to convert them but because to be truly friends with someone they should know the most important parts of your life and the Gospel should be one of them.
Your testimony is a powerful tool for the Gospel! What is a testimony? A common definition of testimony is when a person comes in front of a group of people and attests to and gives evidence of their personal experience and knowledge; this is a regular practice in court rooms. For a Christian, sharing your testimony consists of sharing your personal experience and evidence of how God has changed you personally, specifically when you came to saving faith through the acknowledgement of your sin and acceptance of the sacrifice Jesus paid for you.
No one can argue with your story of God’s mercy and forgiveness in your life, this is why this tool is so powerful. I will make this caveat, it is vital to specifically share the story of the Gospel after you have shared how Jesus has changed your life. The point of sharing our testimony is to point to the ultimate testimony of the work of Jesus Christ on our behalf. Your testimony is a tool to bring the conversation back to What the Word says about Jesus.
An amazing way to cultivate great conversations with non believers is to ask questions. Do you genuinely want to know their story? Are you prepared to hear the stories that make up their life experience? Are you a good listener?
People will generally listen if you listen
People will generally listen if you listen. To many people have created a stereotype of Christian witness that paints us as people who try to “beat the truth” into someone by shouting our do’s and dont’s without hearing the other person, getting to know their story, and graciously sharing the hope we have found in our own lives.
Know them by their fruits
You will know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes from thornbushes or figs from thistles? Even so, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Therefore by their fruits you will know them. Matthew 7:15-20
The context of this verse in Matthew is specifically addressing false prophets, those who bring a different gospel then the one that was preached to you through the word, but I believe we can all find application in this text.
According to this verse every person bears some kind of fruit from their actions, either good or bad and people will know who they serve by that fruit.
When we are sharing our story of grace with those we are in relationship with or are pursuing friendship with, it is important that we are living our life in such a way that they could recognize something different about us. We must make a way, with our actions, to be granted the honor to share our faith with them. No one wants to hear what you have to say if your life is in deep contrast to the message that you are bringing them. This is something to pray through and ask the Holy Spirit to reveal any areas you are not living faithfully and honorably before God and man.
A great way to get conversation started is to just ask questions. Asking questions helps you to direct the conversation in the way you want to navigate it. Is this someone you know? Ask them what they think of your faith. This gives you the opportunity to share more about why you believe what you do and to be able to correct any misconceptions about the Gospel and Jesus very easily. Is this person a stranger? Asking questions communicates a humility that makes having conversations about faith seem less combative and more friendly. This goes back to listening, we need to listen to the people we engage with to fully understand what shapes their faith or lack thereof, in this way we can steer the conversation with questions that bring us to sharing the Gospel.
Share clearly and concisely
It is so important to be aware of how we communicate. Often times it is very easy for a Christian to communicate truths from the Word of God in a way that is difficult to understand if you are hearing it for the first time, we call this “Christianese”. What I mean by Christianese is that we use words that people who are familiar with the Christian faith use often but it could be misleading or confusing for someone who doesn’t understand.
So be sure to use words they can clearly understand. For example, if im talking to someone about sin and how that has effected our relationship with God and why we need a savior, the person im talking to may not fully understand what sin is and not understand the weight of its effect on their life. When you are talking about sin try using its definition in its place. The hebrew word for sin is chata’ and it means to miss the way, go wrong, incur guilt (Blue Letter Bible Website). See the difference? Use wordings that are an easily understandable definition of what you are trying to communicate.
Communicate concisely, as well. When we are communicating the Gospel it is best to explain it simply and use scriptures to back up your explanation. Leave out the unnecessary or the more mature aspects of the faith until a later time of discipleship.
- Dont concern yourself with being eloquent
- You don’t need to be a seminary student to share your faith so don’t allow fear of not knowing a ton of scripture keep you silent. Share the truth of the Gospel and how it has changed your life, people will connect with that.
- Have confidence in what your sharing
- Have confidence knowing the Gospel is the greatest truth anyone will hear and respond to. Don’t be ashamed of sharing it and realize that those who have not accepted Christ need to hear this truth regardless of how they respond to you.
Think of 2 people you could share your faith with who you are around on a regular basis. This could be family members, co-workers, or friends. Pray God would help you to be bold and confident as you share with them. Pray God would soften their heart to receive what you are saying and that they would understand the gospel and respond by giving their life to Christ.
Read a book about sharing the Gospel, here are a few books to start with:
1.) The Master Plan of Evangelism by Dr. Robert E. Coleman
2.) Sharing Jesus without Freaking Out: Evangelism the Way You Were Born to Do It by Alvin L. Reid
3.) Tell the Truth: The Whole Gospel Wholly by Grace Communicated Truthfully & Lovingly by Will Metzger
Let me know in the comments if you have questions or some of your stories of sharing the gospel! If you have prayer request, as always, you can leave them here and I will pray over them!