Summary: Principles of testimony
Tips from the Truth for Testimony [Part III]
When Paul was given permission to speak before King Agrippa and his wife Bernice in Acts 26, some of the most powerful words of testimony were unleashed upon the lost souls that heard. It brought the king to a place of near decision in just a few Spirit-filled moments as he stated ‘Almost thou persuadest me to be a Christian’.
Paul’s testimony too was most effective with those who knew him as shown in (v.4,5). He spoke of his former ‘manner of life’ and those who ‘knew me from the beginning’ indicating who and what he was before he was saved.
Then he gave details of his past sinful life in (v.9-12) telling that he did ‘many things contrary to the name of Jesus of Nazareth.’ He included the details of how he ‘shut up in prison’ the saints of God even ‘when they were put to death, I gave my voice against them. And punished them oft in every synagogue, and compelled them to blaspheme…being exceedingly mad against them…persecuted them…’ He went into great detail concerning his past offenses against the Lord.
He unfolded the events of his salvation experience focusing on the fact that it was Jesus whom he persecuted and it was Jesus who called him to serve Him ‘to make thee a minister and a witness’ giving him the charge of being sent to the Gentile ‘To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God…’(v.13-18)
He then utilizes the Word of God in (v.22,23) showing from the Old Testament Scripture the truth concerning the Lord Jesus Christ’s suffering, resurrection and His showing light to the people [Jews] and the Gentiles.
He used the name of Jesus Christ (v.15,23) in his testimony giving us this powerful and effective example of personal testimony. The name of Jesus and His title the Christ or Messiah must be central in our giving the Gospel to those who are without the Saviour.
Paul not only used the Word of God emphasizing the name of Jesus and his title Christ, but he keyed in on the main message of Christ’s suffering and resurrection as the central events in bringing light to the Jews and Gentiles for it truly is ‘the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.’ (Romans 1:16)
And the bottom line and last point is the fact that his testimony got results! Even though Agrippa was not converted and instead accused Paul of being mad, Paul’s response to this accusation caused Agrippa to consider and make his now famous statement: ‘Almost thou persuadest me to be a Christian’.