Summary: We can connect unbelievers to God by understanding their context, by making a connection, by communicating in their language, and by presenting a relevant gospel message that challenges them to make a decision to follow Christ.
(I AM PREACHING THIS SERMON TO A CHRISTIAN MIDDLE AND HIGH SCHOOL)
Everyone, turn with me in your Koran to the book called “The Dinner Table,” we will start in chapter 5, verse 17:
(17) Certainly they disbelieve who say: Surely, Allah-- He is the Messiah, son of Marium. Say: Who then could control anything as against Allah when He wished to destroy the Messiah son of Marium and his mother and all those on the earth? And Allah’s is the kingdom of the heavens and the earth and what is between them; He creates what He pleases; and Allah has power over all things,
(18) And the Jews and the Christians say: We are the sons of Allah and His beloved ones. Say: Why does He then chastise you for your faults? Nay, you are mortals from among those whom He has created, He forgives whom He pleases and chastises whom He pleases; and Allah’s is the kingdom of the heavens and the earth and what is between them, and to Him is the eventual coming.
Hopefully, you have realized that I am not reading from the Bible, but from the Koran, the Muslim’s Bible and hopefully, this bothers you (joking)! Every time I have a speaking engagement, part of my preparation is to put myself in my audience’s shoes. For you guys, I try to think of what would I want to hear, if I was in this school. Without a question, I am going to use the Bible, but what passage am I going to use. Am I going to come here and preach a sermon geared towards 1st - 6th graders? NO! What I am going to preach is a sermon that is on your level with this setting in mind.
Also, if I were to witness to somebody from the inner city, the ghetto, where there is poverty, etc. where people do not have as much education as you who does not know Jesus in a personal way. Am I going to use big words when I approach this person and say things like you need to get saved, receive salvation, be baptized, and repent for the kingdom of God is near. I do not think so. They will probably think that I am on drugs and need more help, then they do.
The words you choose to use when witnessing to un-believers have to be hand picked. It all boils down to your audience. When we talk to unbelievers, we have to tone down our vocabulary to meet people where they are at in life. How are you going to do that? How are you going to speak into somebody’s life that does not necessarily live in the same culture as you and like the same things as you? How are you going to cross cultural boundaries and effectively bring the gospel to people who are in desperate need to hear about Jesus?
How to connect to the unconnected?
Let me assure you that this task is not impossible. I want you to see how the apostle, Paul, crossed cultural boundaries with the gospel in Acts 17: 16-34. Since there are 18 verses and since I understand you will be bored and probably fall asleep (joking), if I read them all in one shot, so I decided that I am going to break them up into smaller portions through out the message.
The main idea, I want you to take from our time together is that “we can connect unbelievers to God by understanding their context, by communicating in their language, and by presenting a relevant gospel message that challenges them to make a decision to follow Christ.”