Should you share your faith? (Part 1)
This month’s question will be the beginning of a 4-part mini-series. I was initially tempted to answer the question with just one word… “Yes”. It would humorously make the point that it should really go without saying we are to share our faith with others. However, I have a lot more to say in response than just “Yes”.
Here’s the series overview:
Why should we share our faith?
Many Christians don’t witness to others, but readily admit they really should. However, there are some who feel justified in “keeping it to themselves”. They sometimes feel it’s not their job or right to “judge others”. They (as a Christian) can just live according to their own convictions and don’t feel they should be telling anyone else they are wrong about what they believe. (In reality, we should not be judging others against our own standards and personal philosophy, but we do have a mandate to judge others against and according to God’s Holy Word. We ultimately do this for their benefit – their eternal salvation – not simply to point out they are wrong and we are right.)
The question of why we should witness to others has a very simple and straight-forward answer… Scripture commands us to do so! Here are just a few examples:
And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. (Mark 16:15)
But watch thou in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, make full proof of thy ministry. (2 Timothy 4:5)
O give thanks unto the Lord; call upon his name: make known his deeds among the people. (Psalm 105:1)
There is no ambiguity whatsoever with where the Bible stands on this question.
Let’s take a look at a second reason why we should evangelize. Have you ever wondered why, when you become a Christian, God doesn’t just instantly transport you up to heaven? That would be nice, wouldn’t it? It’s primarily because He wants to use you to tell others!
How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him who brings good news… who publishes salvation. (Isaiah 52:7 ESV)
How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things! (Romans 10:14-15)
God’s main purpose for our lives while here on Earth isn’t to just get a college degree, a good job, get married, have a family, travel, retire and watch re-runs of Gilligan’s Island. He wants us to reach out to a lost and dying world. People all around us are struggling with serious issues and we have the answer! (Whether they recognize or receive it is another issue, but that’s between them and God and the work of the Holy Spirit to bring conviction.) God doesn’t ask you to convert anyone… you can’t! He does, however, graciously and sovereignly allow us to be part of the process through which others can hear the truth (and hopefully see it lived-out in our own lives).
Here’s a third and final reason why we should evangelize. This is a very powerful way of looking at this question; one that many people have probably not thought about, but it’s very logical.
When you don’t take the time to share your faith with someone else, it can easily convey one of the following messages (neither of which is good);
I’ll close with a powerful hypothetical situation. I want you to think of someone close to you who you are very confident is not saved. [I really want to you to do this, so please do so before reading any further.] Let’s say through some very unfortunate accident, you both end up dying and are now waiting in line outside the “pearly gates”. (I am not saying this is how it actually works… I am simply making an important point here.) Your friend stands just ahead of you, and when it’s his or her turn, God asks, “Why should I let you into heaven?” Your friend sheepishly says, “Well, I know I wasn’t the best person, but I tried. I was a hard worker, tried to be nice to people, never was seriously into drugs, and didn’t drink too much most of the time.” God then says, “Depart from me into everlasting torment.” Your friend, in complete despondency, hangs their head, turns, and walks away. You’re next… God asks, “Why should I let you into heaven?” You say, “I know I don’t deserve to be here, but you sent your Son to die on a cross to pay the penalty for my sins, and it’s because of His shed blood, not any of my efforts, that I have that right.” God responds with, “You speak the truth, your sins have been completely forgiven, enter in!”
As you walk in, your friend turns and says, “Wait a minute, where are you going?” You say, “I’m going into Heaven.” “How did you get in?” they reply. “Well, I placed my trust in Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of my sins.” In utter shock, their response is, “You knew that was the answer and you never shared that with me!!!” “Well, I didn’t want you to think I was judging you and have you laugh at me, so I never really said anything.”
Can you imagine that scenario? As I close, I want you to think about that very seriously and ask yourself, “Who is it that I have not shared with?” and ask God for opportunities to do so. Nothing could be more important!
Next month (Should you share your faith? Part 2) I will be addressing the question of “What is our message?” The answer is not what many Christians think, so be sure to be watching for that article.
In the meantime, if you have any questions about this or any other issue, please don’t hesitate to contact us!
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