Summary: Everything you need to be an effective witness.
28, September 2003
Dakota Community Church
Passing It On
If you have ever been a part of helping someone to find faith you know there is nothing like it. The angels may rejoice but if you were in on it, you did some rejoicing of your own.
Three things you need before you can share your faith.
1. A faith worth passing on.
9But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light. 10Once you were not a people, but now you are the people of God; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.
8What is more; I consider everything a loss compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them rubbish, that I may gain Christ 9and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ--the righteousness that comes from God and is by faith.
You cannot convince someone else to believe if you are not convinced yourself.
- What has God done for you lately
- Is your faith a blessing or a burden? Does it lift you up or weight you down? Does it carry you or do you carry it?
- If your faith has become a burden, you are doing it wrong!
2. A belief that faith needs to be passed on.
I love the Far Side comic by Gary Larsen of the Blob Family at home. The J.W.’s are coming to the door and the dad says, “Quick, everybody act like bean bag chairs.”
11 Rescue those being led away to death; hold back those staggering toward slaughter.
12 If you say, "But we knew nothing about this," does not he who weighs the heart perceive it?
Does not he who guards your life know it? Will he not repay each person according to what he has done?
15But 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.
7 I will tell of the kindnesses of the Lord, the deeds for which he is to be praised, according to all the LORD has done for us.
9 But if I say, "I will not mention him or speak any more in his name," his word is in my heart like a fire, a fire shut up in my bones. I am weary of holding it in; indeed, I cannot.
18Then they called them in again and commanded them not to speak or teach at all in the name of Jesus. 19But Peter and John replied, "Judge for yourselves whether it is right in God’s sight to obey you rather than God. 20For we cannot help speaking about what we have seen and heard."
13It is written: "I believed; therefore I have spoken." With that same spirit of faith we also believe and therefore speak.
14And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.
"Millions of surveys which we have helped to take around the world indicate that approximately 98 percent of the Christians do not regularly introduce others to the Savior." -Bill Bright, president of Campus Crusade for Christ
Christ met unbelievers where they were. He realized what many Christians today still don’t seem to understand. Cultivators have to get out in the field. According to one count, the gospels record 132 contacts that Jesus had with people. Six were in the Temple; four in the synagogues and 122 were out with the people in the mainstream of life. -J.K. Johnston
3. The wisdom to be effective.
- Most of what we call “witnessing” does more harm than good.
- Usually seeds are not planted rather, walls are erected.
- Walls of offence that will need to be torn down by someone else later.
- Stranger evangelism is not effective.
- More than 75% are in because of a close friend or family member.
- Why do we keep doing it?
The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over hoping to get a different result.
25About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening to them. 26Suddenly there was such a violent earthquake that the foundations of the prison were shaken. At once all the prison doors flew open, and everybody’s chains came loose. 27The jailer woke up, and when he saw the prison doors open, he drew his sword and was about to kill himself because he thought the prisoners had escaped. 28But Paul shouted "Don’t harm yourself! We are all here!"