Summary: Second message on witnessing - this one focusing on some practical helps.

Be Intentional

#10 – Sharing the Good News (Part 2)

1 Peter 3:15-16

March 30, 2003


Two weeks ago we looked at the issue of sharing the good news, and we talked about 4 things we need to do on a foundational basis to be effective in telling others about Jesus.

The first was that we should ask God to impress each of us with a sense of ownership and gratitude for our own salvation.

Then I said we should ask God to give us a sense of the “lostness” of those around us, and how it grieves God’s heart.

Thirdly, I mentioned that we need to develop and maintain a personal, authentic relationship with God, based on a love for God and gratitude for His love for you.

And lastly I said that we’ve got to develop solid Biblical convictions about the truth of Christ.

Today I want us to look at some very practical things about how to tell someone the good news of forgiveness and a home in heaven through Jesus.

A lot of people would like to share their faith, but feel inadequate and unequipped. Today I hope to give you some help in both those areas.

The basis for this message is found in 1 Peter 3:15-16, which is printed at the top of your bulletin.

Please read this aloud with me as we begin our message time today.

But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, 16 keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander.

I want to offer you five actions to take in sharing the good news with those God puts in your path.

And I promise that if you put these into practice, you will find strength and adequacy in Christ, and you will have some tools to use.

Let’s dig in, shall we?

Five actions to take in sharing the good news.

1. Make sure you’ve got your own priorities right.

“Set apart Christ as Lord.”

If you want to see long-term success in seeing people become followers of Christ, it is essential that you are doing your level best to be a disciple of Christ.

What do you mean, Pastor? Aren’t all believers disciples? I don’t think so.

We have lots of believers, but not as many disciples. You can’t be a disciple without being a believer, but the problem comes when we stop at being a believer, instead of moving on to being a disciple.

So what is a disciple? My definition of a disciple is someone who seeks to become a devoted follower of Jesus as Savior and Lord. A disciple is someone who has taken Jesus not just as his Savior, but also as Lord – the Boss.

I have been guilty of helping many people become believers, and not followed them up in a way that helps them become a devoted follower of Christ.

But now I introduce the concept of being a disciple right away when I am telling people about Christ.

I tell them that God offers forgiveness and a home in heaven to all who trust in Him; and I tell them that Jesus offers a full and abundant life to those who follow Him in trusting obedience.

And I offer help to them get started right away in establishing that relationship with God in a way that helps that person become not just a believer, but a disciple from the get-go.

A disciple has a more fulfilled life in Christ, because he has a relationship with Christ that allows Him to take full advantage of the promises and presence of God.

Why is this so important? Because just before Jesus left earth to go back to the Father, He said that our job until He came back was to make disciples of all nations.

We could spend weeks talking about being a disciple. In fact, we have been. That’s the theme of my preaching this year.

Being intentional about your walk with God is what discipleship is all about.

So before we move on, let me ask you: are you earnestly seeking to become more than just a believer, but rather, a disciple?

If you want to see people come to Christ through your ministry, it is essential that you can call Jesus your Lord.

The second action to take in sharing the good news is to…

2. Prepare for opportunities.

“Always be prepared to give an answer.”

 Have some tools:

- Tracts

- Invitation cards

- Diagrams

- Marked Bible

- Tapes, CD’s, or videos of gospel presentations

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