Summary: This is the 2nd sermon in the series "Unlocking The Doors To Freedom". We are to look like Jesus Christ.
Series: Unlocking The Doors To Freedom [#2]
THE DOOR OF WITNESS
There are many things that can rob a Christian’s joy and peace. In the last study we looked at one of these- Works. In this sermon we are going to look at another possible culprit- Your witness. A poor witness for Christ can create feelings of guilt, shame, worry, etc.… From Paul’s testimony we will identify 3 areas of a person’s witness. As we study this, ask yourself, “Does my witness bring glory to God or is it robbing me of my joy”? Let’s look at the keys to unlocking the door of your witness.
Galatians 1:11-12 (NIV)
“I want you to know, brothers, that the gospel I preached is not something that man made up. I did not receive it from any man, nor was I taught it; rather, I received it by revelation from Jesus Christ.”
Key #1: What you say.
There are times that believers have to be able to tell others about what God has done for them. There are times that you must share things from your past in order to show what God has done. This was what Paul was doing; but notice that Paul is careful to not “brag”. Allow the Holy Spirit to give you the words to say. Often times when you are nervous you will forget Scripture and certain lines you have practiced to say. Don’t make things up, just share with them what God has done for you.
Paul had to explain to people why he was preaching the very thing he had tried to destroy earlier in his life. Some ridiculed Paul because of his past; but others believed in Jesus Christ as their Savior. Christians, we must tell others about the Gospel of Jesus Christ and how Jesus has changed our lives.
Galatians 1:13-2:5 (NIV)
“For you have heard of my previous way of life in Judaism, how intensely I persecuted the church of God and tried to destroy it. I was advancing in Judaism beyond many Jews of my own age and was extremely zealous for the traditions of my fathers. But when God, who set me apart from birth and called me by his grace, was pleased to reveal his Son in me so that I might preach him among the Gentiles, I did not consult any man, nor did I go up to Jerusalem to see those who were apostles before I was, but I went immediately into Arabia and later returned to Damascus. Then after three years, I went up to Jerusalem to get acquainted with Peter and stayed with him fifteen days. I saw none of the other apostles--only James, the Lord's brother. I assure you before God that what I am writing you is no lie. Later I went to Syria and Cilicia. I was personally unknown to the churches of Judea that are in Christ. They only heard the report: "The man who formerly persecuted us is now preaching the faith he once tried to destroy." And they praised God because of me. Fourteen years later I went up again to Jerusalem, this time with Barnabas. I took Titus along also. I went in response to a revelation and set before them the gospel that I preach among the Gentiles. But I did this privately to those who seemed to be leaders, for fear that I was running or had run my race in vain. Yet not even Titus, who was with me, was compelled to be circumcised, even though he was a Greek. [This matter arose] because some false brothers had infiltrated our ranks to spy on the freedom we have in Christ Jesus and to make us slaves. We did not give in to them for a moment, so that the truth of the gospel might remain with you.”
Key #2: What you do.
More important than what you say is what you do. For most, we can talk “religiously” if we have to. We can tell about what God has done for us on certain occasions. Unfortunately, most believers try to turn their witness for Christ on and off like a water faucet. Paul had to constantly fight the Jewish Christians from trying to make circumcision a part of salvation. There were some who were trying to add requirements to salvation in Paul’s day and it is still happening today. Do not fall into the trap of having to “look religious” or “act religious” to enjoy your salvation. This goes back to our last study on works versus faith. An obedient Christian will want to serve God out of love not obligation; but the evidence of your salvation is the fruit your life shows. Don’t give in. Salvation comes through faith in Jesus Christ. Nothing else is required.