Get the Word Out
Bible Reading: Matthew 28:18-20
Go and make disciples of all the nations (Matthew 28:19, NIV).
God has a huge rescue mission going on. And your part is called evangelism—communicating the good news of Jesus to lost people. You might freeze with fear at the thought of becoming an “evangelist,” but spreading God’s good news isn't about getting a TV program or a slicked-back hairdo. Actually, the Bible reveals that real evangelism is made up of three activities:
1. Tell the facts (1 Corinthians 15:1-4). Sure, how you act around non-Christians shows the importance of Christ in your life. If you’re living by the Bible’s guidelines—you don’t cheat, you aren't into drugs or alcohol or premarital sex, and you respect adults—that’s superb. But don’t mistake all that for evangelism. The good news centers on what God has done to free us from sin and introduce us to his love. At some point, you have to tell people how Jesus’ death and resurrection has provided forgiveness for their sin and won them eternal life—and how they must trust Christ to claim what God has done them. You haven’t started to evangelize until you spill the facts.
2. Call for a decision (2 Corinthians 5:11,20). Imagine you just discovered a pill that cures cancer. If your best friend was dying of cancer, you wouldn't be content just to tell your friend about the cure. You would do everything in your power to persuade her to take the pill. The fact that a cure exists isn't enough. Your friend has to swallow the pill, or your wonder drug does no good.
Just like that, you need to persuade your non-Christian friends to respond to God’s provision for their rescue. Knowing the facts isn't enough. If they don’t trust Christ personally, then the good news isn't good news for them. Sharing the facts and persuading non-Christians to respond doesn't mean you threaten or pester people or bicker with them until they can’t stand to be around you. Instead, reason calmly with them and convince them about the facts, lovingly challenging them to change their minds about God and trust Christ.
3. Make disciples (Matthew 28:19-20). Jesus left no doubt that the ultimate result of evangelism is that people become his steadfast followers. Once your friends trust Christ, they need teaching and encouragement to grow up in the faith. Introducing your non-Christian friends to Christ includes telling them the facts and calling them to trust their lives to Christ. But God likely also wants to use you over the next weeks and months in helping your new Christian friends mature.
REFLECT: As you think about God’s rescue mission today, what non-Christian friends or family members does God want to reach through you?
PRAY: Pray for those people by name, asking God to show you how to share Christ with them.
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